Author Topic: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)  (Read 454957 times)

Offline Herb Schaltegger

Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1080 on: 08/27/2020 02:46 pm »
Iíd be curious whether thereíd be any benefit in a flight profile that exploits the 3-engine restart capability by (for example) shutting them down in parallel with a usual throttle down (IIRC, to 40%?) in the other six engines, and then some combination of restarting the three and/or shutting down the six after booster separation.

I would think that the startup/shutdown transients might be an interesting GNC problem to compensate for when planning a precise interplanetary trajectory.
Ad astra per aspirin ...

Offline Citabria

  • Member
  • Full Member
  • **
  • Posts: 288
  • Michigan
  • Liked: 248
  • Likes Given: 270
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1081 on: 08/28/2020 12:09 pm »
Engine throttling or shut down during ascent can only compromise performance. It's done when necessary such as when passing through max Q or when limiting G load. That's part of the reason for fewer engines in the core. Also with 5 engines the spacing is wider and the nozzle extensions can be larger for peak performance between booster sep and staging.

Offline su27k

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5418
  • Liked: 7814
  • Likes Given: 715
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1082 on: 02/21/2021 03:11 am »
This made an appearance in the PPE/HALO launch thread, was then deleted by mods probably for being off-topic, which is unfortunate since I think it's interesting info and should be preserved, so I'm posting it again here.

Mercury Lander - A Mission Concept Study, final report pdf can be downloaded here.

It's a concept study for a New Frontier class mercury lander mission, launch in 2035 on expendable FH to C3=14.7, for a mass of 9410kg. Takes 10 years cruise using SEP to arrive at Mercury in 2045. The mission is enabled by FH since no other launch vehicle in the LSP catalog has the performance (For C3=14.7, DIVH payload is less than 8t, Atlas 551 is less than 5t, expendable FH is 11t+).

The report mentioned a launch price of $210M ("The price for a LV with expendable Falcon Heavy-type capabilities, based on past pricing to NASA missions of evolved expendable launch vehicles, would be at least $210M for a launch using a standard sized fairing"), but note this is a launch 15 years from now, so need to take inflation into account. $210M in 2035 roughly translate to ~$160M today.
« Last Edit: 02/21/2021 03:11 am by su27k »

Offline Slarty1080

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2561
  • UK
  • Liked: 1689
  • Likes Given: 745
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1083 on: 02/23/2021 09:24 pm »
According to Jeff Foust (Space News Inc) it seems like Europa Clipper might have abandoned SLS and be heading to a commercial provider. FH? This was reported on the SLS thread. Thought it would be of interest here as well.

https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1359591780010889219?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1359591780010889219%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_c10&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fforum.nasaspaceflight.com%2Findex.php%3Ftopic%3D50297.1100
My optimistic hope is that it will become cool to really think about things... rather than just doing reactive bullsh*t based on no knowledge (Brian Cox)

Offline Citabria

  • Member
  • Full Member
  • **
  • Posts: 288
  • Michigan
  • Liked: 248
  • Likes Given: 270
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1084 on: 03/10/2021 03:29 pm »
Engine throttling or shut down during ascent can only compromise performance. It's done when necessary such as when passing through max Q or when limiting G load. That's part of the reason for fewer engines in the core. Also with 5 engines the spacing is wider and the nozzle extensions can be larger for peak performance between booster sep and staging.

Edit: Since this post I have learned about flow separation inside the nozzle and how damaging that would be, so it makes no sense to enlarge the M1-D nozzles. Still, I wonder if removing 1 or 2 engines from the center core might improve performance as opposed to throttling, due to mass fraction effects.

Offline shiro

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
  • Liked: 19
  • Likes Given: 128
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy : USSF-44 : KSC LC-39A : July 2021
« Reply #1085 on: 03/11/2021 04:00 pm »
I don't want to get off topic, but one question about the Falcon Heavy center core is intriguing me. Why the booster's interstage is still being white? I've thought ALL Falcon rockets are enjoying their stylish black interstages with some extra thermal protection nowadays.

I'm also not sure if the lack of it in the FH center core has something to do with the structural loads. No doubt, the center core is not your average Falcon 9 booster, but it's just a special paint, right? Do we have any good explanation why the interstage for B1066 is the "old-fashioned" white one? Maybe it's just cheaper if they don't have any plans to recover this core?

Offline woods170

  • IRAS fan
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11201
  • IRAS fan
  • The Netherlands
  • Liked: 14635
  • Likes Given: 8627
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1086 on: 04/13/2021 08:54 am »
Moved my reply from the Delta IV Heavy discussion thread, because the discussion below is OT for that thread.

The missing Orion might be NROL-69 going up on a Falcon in Q3 2023.

I don't think so. SpaceX is only getting $160M for two launches, so these are likely to be Falcon 9, which is not powerful enough for Orion. Historically, SpaceX has charged over $300M for Falcon Heavy launches to the government ($316M for USAF and $332M for HALO).

You are famous here for being really good with engine numbers.
However, your quoted post shows that you need a bit more information with regards to launch contract numbers.

$316M for USAF is for one specific FH launch which requires VI. As explained by Gwynne Shotwell, this one-time high pricetag contains the cost of building the required VI MST. It also contains the cost of developing the required long fairing. Because SpaceX receives no ELC, the cost of building/developing these VI items are charged on the first contract to make use of them.


$332M for NASA, for the launch of PPE and HALO is the cost to NASA, which is not equal to what SpaceX charges NASA for the launch.
As explained by Jim the cost to NASA includes not only what SpaceX charges for the launch (which is quite a bit less than $332M) but also launch prep related costs born by NASA but not charged by SpaceX.

Particularly 'Payload processing' cost will be very substantial for the PPE/HALO launch. As part of the cost to NASA, NASA has Maxar and Northrop Grumman perform the integration of PPE and HALO into one payload (the Co Manifested Vehicle - CMV), at the launch site, including all the integration testing. Which requires NASA to pay for a large payload processing facility at KSC/CCAFS for a full year. And that is expensive, adding many tens of millions of US dollars to the cost to NASA for this launch.


Edit: that last link is to a PDF that not always loads correctly. So I attached the PDF to this post as well.
« Last Edit: 04/13/2021 10:02 am by woods170 »

Offline DreamyPickle

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 912
  • Home
  • Liked: 879
  • Likes Given: 196
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1087 on: 07/24/2021 11:51 am »
With the Europa Clipper contract we now have a new public price point for a Falcon Heavy launch: $178M.

People have expressed surprise that this is much less that the >$300M charged for PPE+HALO and USSF-64 but it is entirely consistent with SpaceX charging more for the extended fairing and vertical integration. That extended fairing and the vertical integration facilities do not exist yet and the development and build cost is being passed on to those specific missions that require them.

We will see if other missions that require the longer fairing and/or VI get charged more.

Offline Mandella

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 477
  • Liked: 741
  • Likes Given: 1900
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1088 on: 07/24/2021 04:25 pm »
With the Europa Clipper contract we now have a new public price point for a Falcon Heavy launch: $178M.

People have expressed surprise that this is much less that the >$300M charged for PPE+HALO and USSF-64 but it is entirely consistent with SpaceX charging more for the extended fairing and vertical integration. That extended fairing and the vertical integration facilities do not exist yet and the development and build cost is being passed on to those specific missions that require them.

We will see if other missions that require the longer fairing and/or VI get charged more.

I think it is applicable to note that this is the price for a *fully expended* launch.

Presumably the price is less if SpaceX plans to get their boosters back.

Offline rpapo

Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1089 on: 07/24/2021 10:38 pm »
With the Europa Clipper contract we now have a new public price point for a Falcon Heavy launch: $178M.

People have expressed surprise that this is much less that the >$300M charged for PPE+HALO and USSF-64 but it is entirely consistent with SpaceX charging more for the extended fairing and vertical integration. That extended fairing and the vertical integration facilities do not exist yet and the development and build cost is being passed on to those specific missions that require them.

We will see if other missions that require the longer fairing and/or VI get charged more.

I think it is applicable to note that this is the price for a *fully expended* launch.

Presumably the price is less if SpaceX plans to get their boosters back.
Careful with that price point.  It is the price point for a Falcon Heavy governmental launch.  Government launches, because of all the additional oversight required, cost more.  That has been known for a while now.  In addition, this will probably be a totally expended Falcon Heavy.
An Apollo fanboy . . . fifty years ago.

Offline joek

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4412
  • Liked: 2268
  • Likes Given: 950
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1090 on: 07/25/2021 12:10 am »
Careful with that price point.  It is the price point for a Falcon Heavy governmental launch.  Government launches, because of all the additional oversight required, cost more.  That has been known for a while now.  In addition, this will probably be a totally expended Falcon Heavy.

Believe that is understood. Simple first-order estimate:
1. Take the ~$300M for PPE+HALO and USSF-64 and subtract NRE (non-recurring engineering) for VI and extended fairing. NRE $ unknown.
2. For missions which require VI add incremental $. Additional $ unknown.
3. For missions which require extended fairing, add incremental $. Additional $ unknown.
4. For missions which require additional DoD/NASA mission assurance, add incremental $. Additional mission assurance $ unknown; will be mission-dependent.
5. Add FH reusable or expended $ for total $.

Would love to see some firm numbers on the above, but so far we appear to have only speculation. And no, it is not "the price point for a Falcon Heavy governmental launch" unless you can fill in some of the blanks with credible sources.

edit: p.s. Putting the data points into a set of linear equations might help suss out more details. I'll leave that for others; I' to lazy (and busy) to do it at the moment.
« Last Edit: 07/25/2021 12:26 am by joek »

Offline Grandpa to Two

Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1091 on: 07/25/2021 12:52 am »
Careful with that price point.  It is the price point for a Falcon Heavy governmental launch.  Government launches, because of all the additional oversight required, cost more.  That has been known for a while now.  In addition, this will probably be a totally expended Falcon Heavy.

Believe that is understood. Simple first-order estimate:
1. Take the ~$300M for PPE+HALO and USSF-64 and subtract NRE (non-recurring engineering) for VI and extended fairing. NRE $ unknown.
2. For missions which require VI add incremental $. Additional $ unknown.
3. For missions which require extended fairing, add incremental $. Additional $ unknown.
4. For missions which require additional DoD/NASA mission assurance, add incremental $. Additional mission assurance $ unknown; will be mission-dependent.
5. Add FH reusable or expended $ for total $.

Would love to see some firm numbers on the above, but so far we appear to have only speculation. And no, it is not "the price point for a Falcon Heavy governmental launch" unless you can fill in some of the blanks with credible sources.

edit: p.s. Putting the data points into a set of linear equations might help suss out more details. I'll leave that for others; I' to lazy (and busy) to do it at the moment.
6. For missions requiring additional boost engines additional $ís. Eg. a Star 48 engine as will be needed for this mission.
« Last Edit: 07/25/2021 12:53 am by Grandpa to Two »
"All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them" Galileo Galilei

Offline Jim

  • Night Gator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 35502
  • Cape Canaveral Spaceport
  • Liked: 17425
  • Likes Given: 394
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1092 on: 07/25/2021 01:06 am »

6. For missions requiring additional boost engines additional $ís. Eg. a Star 48 ÖÖ.

Not always provided by the launch vehicle
« Last Edit: 07/25/2021 01:42 am by Jim »

Offline AstroWare

  • Full Member
  • **
  • Posts: 219
  • Arizona
  • Liked: 157
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1093 on: 07/25/2021 01:14 am »



6. For missions requiring additional boost engines additional $ís. Eg. a Star 48 engine >>>>as will be needed for this mission.<<<<<

Not always provided by the launch vehicle

When did a star48 kick motor get added to Europa Clipper?? (Emphasis added above)

Offline Grandpa to Two

Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1094 on: 07/25/2021 01:35 am »



6. For missions requiring additional boost engines additional $ís. Eg. a Star 48 engine >>>>as will be needed for this mission.<<<<<

Not always provided by the launch vehicle

When did a star48 kick motor get added to Europa Clipper?? (Emphasis added above)

As stated in Eric Bergerís ARS Technica article dated July 23. Basically Falcon Heavy can accomplish the mission using a Star 48 in place of a Venus flyby gravity assist.

Quote ď However, politicians continued to insist that NASA launch Clipper on the SLS rocket. Three different events finally forced legislators to relent. First, in late 2018, NASA scientists concluded that the Falcon Heavy could complete the Clipper mission without needing a gravity assist from Venus, and therefore it would not have to go into the inner Solar System. The Falcon Heavy could do so with the addition of a Star 48 "kick stage." Reference https://arstechnica.com/science/2021/07/spacex-to-launch-the-europa-clipper-mission-for-a-bargain-price/
I hope I didnít break any NSF guidelines with adding the web site link.
Edit to correct spelling of technica.
« Last Edit: 07/25/2021 01:37 am by Grandpa to Two »
"All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them" Galileo Galilei

Offline Robotbeat

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 34748
  • Minnesota
  • Liked: 18550
  • Likes Given: 9852
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1095 on: 07/25/2021 01:37 am »
With the Europa Clipper contract we now have a new public price point for a Falcon Heavy launch: $178M.

People have expressed surprise that this is much less that the >$300M charged for PPE+HALO and USSF-64 but it is entirely consistent with SpaceX charging more for the extended fairing and vertical integration. That extended fairing and the vertical integration facilities do not exist yet and the development and build cost is being passed on to those specific missions that require them.

We will see if other missions that require the longer fairing and/or VI get charged more.

I think it is applicable to note that this is the price for a *fully expended* launch.

Presumably the price is less if SpaceX plans to get their boosters back.
Careful with that price point.  It is the price point for a Falcon Heavy governmental launch.  Government launches, because of all the additional oversight required, cost more.  That has been known for a while now.  In addition, this will probably be a totally expended Falcon Heavy.
Yeah, it may include integration of a kick stage.

$150 million is what Musk quoted as expendable Falcon Heavy price, so this really isn't far from that, considering the greater integration costs vs a typical commercial launch.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline Jim

  • Night Gator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 35502
  • Cape Canaveral Spaceport
  • Liked: 17425
  • Likes Given: 394
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1096 on: 07/25/2021 01:41 am »
. Basically Falcon Heavy can accomplish the mission using a Star 48 in place of a Venus flyby gravity assist.

There isnít one.  This is doing a Mars gravity assist

Offline AstroWare

  • Full Member
  • **
  • Posts: 219
  • Arizona
  • Liked: 157
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1097 on: 07/25/2021 01:46 am »


. Basically Falcon Heavy can accomplish the mission using a Star 48 in place of a Venus flyby gravity assist.

There isnít one.  This is doing a Mars gravity assist

That was my understanding too. Thanks.

Online Coastal Ron

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7633
  • I live... along the coast
  • Liked: 8747
  • Likes Given: 10587
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1098 on: 07/25/2021 02:22 am »
With the Europa Clipper contract we now have a new public price point for a Falcon Heavy launch: $178M.

A number of people have already chimed in on this topic, and here is what I would say.

The Falcon Heavy price for basic launches was negotiated as part of being an option for the NASA Launch Services (NLS) II Contract. We in the public don't know what that price is, but for the basic launch service that price is set.

What changes from launch to launch is the additional services the customer wants for each payload or mission. I would imagine these are bid for each contract, and they are added to the pre-negotiated NLS II launch cost for that launch vehicle.

And from a public standpoint Elon Musk has stated that a Falcon Heavy fully expended is $150M. The NLS II contract price could be less, but the major takeaway is that SpaceX is not changing their launch prices for every contract. It is the additional services required by each launch customer that is what accounts for the variance in launch contract pricing.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline Jim

  • Night Gator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 35502
  • Cape Canaveral Spaceport
  • Liked: 17425
  • Likes Given: 394
Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 6)
« Reply #1099 on: 07/25/2021 02:38 am »
the major takeaway is that SpaceX is not changing their launch prices for every contract.

We don't know that.  The prices are not fixed. The contract has not to exceed prices for each year. The company doesn't have to charge the NTE price.
« Last Edit: 07/25/2021 02:39 am by Jim »

Tags:
 

Advertisement NovaTech
Advertisement SkyTale Software GmbH
Advertisement Northrop Grumman
Advertisement
Advertisement Brady Kenniston
Advertisement NextSpaceflight
Advertisement Nathan Barker Photography
1