Author Topic: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : KSC LC-39A : 25 June 2024 (21:26 UTC)  (Read 64303 times)

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Discussion Thread for launch of GOES-U

NSF Threads for GOES-U : Discussion

25 June 2024 on Falcon Heavy from 39A to GTO.



https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-awards-launch-services-contract-for-goes-u-mission

Quote
Sep 10, 2021
CONTRACT RELEASE C21-025

NASA Awards Launch Services Contract for GOES-U Mission

NASA has selected Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) of Hawthorne, California, to provide launch services for the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-U (GOES-U) mission. GOES-U will provide advanced imagery and atmospheric measurements of Earth’s weather, oceans, and environment, as well as real-time mapping of total lightning activity and improved monitoring of solar activity and space weather.

The total cost for NASA to launch GOES-U is approximately $152.5 million, which includes the launch service and other mission-related costs.

The GOES-U mission is targeted to launch in April 2024 on a Falcon Heavy rocket from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. GOES-U is the fourth and final spacecraft in the GOES-R Series of geostationary weather satellites operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The GOES-R Series is a joint effort between NASA and NOAA and includes GOES-R, GOES-S, GOES-T, and GOES-U.

NASA’s Launch Services Program at Kennedy Space Center in Florida is responsible for launch vehicle program management of the SpaceX launch service. NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, manages the GOES-R Flight Projects office, which oversees the acquisition of the GOES-R series instruments and spacecraft. A collaborative NOAA and NASA team manages the GOES-R Program.

For more information about the GOES satellite network, visit:

www.nasa.gov/goes

-end-
« Last Edit: 06/25/2024 08:36 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #1 on: 09/10/2021 08:26 pm »
https://twitter.com/spacex/status/1436425327849316356

Quote
NASA has selected Falcon Heavy to launch GOES-U in 2024! This next-generation satellite operated by @NOAA will support weather forecasting, severe storm tracking, and meteorology research → nasa.gov/press-release/…

Offline Conexion Espacial

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #2 on: 09/10/2021 08:56 pm »

This would be the first GOES satellite launch that is not launched with ULA's Atlas or Delta. Comparing the contract for GOES T ($165.7) launched with ULA's Atlas V and GOES U ($152.5) to be launched with SpaceX's Falcon Heavy, NASA would be saving $13.2 million, if ULA offered the same amount for this mission.


I believe that if ULA offered something for this mission, it would be to launch it with the Vulcan.


Regarding this mission, is it possible that the Falcon Heavy will launch the satellite directly to GEO? similar to USSF-44?
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Online gongora

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #3 on: 09/10/2021 09:03 pm »
At that price it's possible they could expend the center core and do GEO

Offline abaddon

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #4 on: 09/10/2021 09:18 pm »
According to Wiki the launch mass of GOES-17 (nee GOES-S), the most recent GOES bird orbited, was a little over 5 metric tons and was launched on an Atlas 541: https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2018/03/ula-atlas-goes-s-launch/ to a GTO which was somewhat boosted to make the ascent to GEO easier.  It does seem likely the Falcon Heavy can get it all the way to GEO while expending the center core.

This is a nice win for SpaceX.
« Last Edit: 09/10/2021 09:21 pm by abaddon »

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #5 on: 09/10/2021 10:15 pm »
I believe that if ULA offered something for this mission, it would be to launch it with the Vulcan.

Yes, with the last Delta & Atlas missions all accounted for. But as Vulcan isn’t yet certified, can ULA win any new NASA missions at the moment? So isn’t SpaceX the only effective bidder currently? (at least beyond a certain payload mass)

Offline Conexion Espacial

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #6 on: 09/10/2021 10:33 pm »
I believe that if ULA offered something for this mission, it would be to launch it with the Vulcan.

Yes, with the last Delta & Atlas missions all accounted for. But as Vulcan isn’t yet certified, can ULA win any new NASA missions at the moment? So isn’t SpaceX the only effective bidder currently? (at least beyond a certain payload mass)
Of course, the Vulcan is not yet certified, but remember that the Atlas V will not be sold anymore, the only possibility to see more missions with the Atlas V, is that they are missions of the 29 missions that are already contracted (of the 29 missions, 9 are for Kuiper).
« Last Edit: 09/10/2021 10:49 pm by Conexion Espacial »
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Offline ThePonjaX

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #7 on: 09/12/2021 12:40 am »
The article on spacenews:

https://spacenews.com/spacex-wins-contract-to-launch-weather-satellite-after-ula-withdraws/

Says ULA  withdraws from the bid:

Quote
ULA spokesperson Jessica Rye said the company withdrew its bid to launch GOES-U because it did not have any Atlas 5 vehicles available. “All of the remaining 29 rockets have been sold to customers for future launches so we had to withdraw our bid for NASA’s GOES-U launch service,” she said.

Offline dchenevert

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #8 on: 09/12/2021 01:19 am »
The article on spacenews:

https://spacenews.com/spacex-wins-contract-to-launch-weather-satellite-after-ula-withdraws/

Says ULA  withdraws from the bid:

Quote
ULA spokesperson Jessica Rye said the company withdrew its bid to launch GOES-U because it did not have any Atlas 5 vehicles available. “All of the remaining 29 rockets have been sold to customers for future launches so we had to withdraw our bid for NASA’s GOES-U launch service,” she said.

I think there is a story buried in this.

"There are 29 Atlases left. All of those RD-180s are safely ensconced in a warehouse in Alabama. I believe that is more than I need to transition smoothly to Vulcan.”

but apparently, the are all spoken for... "All of the remaining 29 rockets have been sold to customers....". I.e., *not* "more than I need'.

Something does not compute.

Maybe "all 29" is exaggerated, in that many of those launches might be contract as "use Atlas V or Vulcan, whichever is ready", and several years out. In this case, ULA could have used one of the 29 for this bid, but just did not want to.

A little more interesting would be if ULA is slowly being painted in a triangular corner. If
...the customers for the "remaining 29" are putting their foot down, so those 29 are not available
...and "no more Atlas's after those 29" is too much of a hill for ULA to back down from
...and if the Vulcan delay metastasizes

In this case ULA, starting now, can only specify Vulcan in future launch bids, effective immediately, and the next customers for this class of launch will be comparing risks for SpaceX (tried and true) to Vulcan and BE-4 (no comment).

TLDR I will be curious to hear about the next launch bid that ULA wins.

Offline GWR64

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #9 on: 09/12/2021 09:25 am »
According to Wiki the launch mass of GOES-17 (nee GOES-S), the most recent GOES bird orbited, was a little over 5 metric tons and was launched on an Atlas 541: https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2018/03/ula-atlas-goes-s-launch/ to a GTO which was somewhat boosted to make the ascent to GEO easier.  It does seem likely the Falcon Heavy can get it all the way to GEO while expending the center core.

This is a nice win for SpaceX.

SpaceX only has to do what the customer demands.
The first two satellites in this series went into a GTO at around 1000 m/s to the GEO.
If that's similar with GEOS-U, SpaceX will do that and land all cores if possible.
SpaceX currently has no competitors in this segment with proven launch vehicles. worldwide (except the chinese)

Online oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #10 on: 09/12/2021 06:18 pm »
The associated NASA document on certification requirements for LVs as it would relate to GOES-U being a Category 2 payload.
 

Offline joek

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #11 on: 09/12/2021 07:11 pm »
The associated NASA document on certification requirements for LVs as it would relate to GOES-U being a Category 2 payload.
Not sure what that is telling us, other than that SpaceX is the only qualified provider (other than ULA/Atlas)? Which think we know based on their selection? Or trying to confirm that GEOS-U is a Cat-2 mission? Which think we know based on previous GEOS missions?

Online oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #12 on: 09/12/2021 07:35 pm »
The associated NASA document on certification requirements for LVs as it would relate to GOES-U being a Category 2 payload.
Not sure what that is telling us, other than that SpaceX is the only qualified provider (other than ULA/Atlas)? Which think we know based on their selection? Or trying to confirm that GEOS-U is a Cat-2 mission? Which think we know based on previous GEOS missions?
There is additional documentation that I currently cannot find a copy off the states that as long as you meet the Category requirements by Launch time a contract can be awarded. But then there is another one about use of the NLS II contract is where NASA picks a LV from to be awarded a contract. And to get onto the NLS II contract. The real things are convoluted. But basically if ULA had done an additional bid using Vulcan vs using Atlas V they could have still been awarded a contract. NOTE SpaceX has been doing this with Starship bid and a separate fallback Falcon Heavy bid. So since they did not bid Vulcan separately they had no options.

Offline joek

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #13 on: 09/12/2021 08:31 pm »
There is additional documentation that I currently cannot find a copy off the states that as long as you meet the Category requirements by Launch time a contract can be awarded. The real things are convoluted. ...

Correct, as long as LV is certified, or has a credible plan to be certified by the time of launch (approved by NASA), the provider may be awarded a contract. It is not particularly "convoluted"; those requirements are documented and should be well understood by all prospective providers

Quote
But basically if ULA had done an additional bid using Vulcan vs using Atlas V they could have still been awarded a contract.
Not necessarily. What this tells us is: (1) ULA does not have a certified LV (e.g., Atlas) to bid; or (2) ULA does not have a credible plan for certifying Vulcan prior to GEOS launch.

Quote
But then there is another one about use of the NLS II contract is where NASA picks a LV from to be awarded a contract. And to get onto the NLS II contract.
Just because a provider has been admitted as a potential NLS bidder means little. For example, New Glenn is on the list. Does not mean squat unless they are eligible to bid. To be eligible to bid they have to check a few boxes, including---at minimum--an approved plan to be certified prior to launch for the mission they are bidding. If they cannot pass that gate, they might as well not bother bidding.
« Last Edit: 09/12/2021 08:33 pm by joek »

Online oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #14 on: 09/12/2021 08:51 pm »
Thanks for clarifying the details.

I went and looked up the calendar of events.

March 30, 2021 the Final RFP for GOES-U was released for bid.
April 19, 2021 Amazon closed the deal for 9 Atlas V flights with ULA.

So suddenly the plan to just use another Atlas V for GOES-U like for the other GOES launches got crunched. And ULA did not have time to put forth an alternative before bids were due. The other item is probably ULA held onto not withdrawing until the final stage of the award process in case the Kuiper deal fell through.

Offline soltasto

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #15 on: 09/12/2021 10:25 pm »
So suddenly the plan to just use another Atlas V for GOES-U like for the other GOES launches got crunched.

We don't know that. For all we know SpaceX could have won even if the Atlas V was still available.

Offline joek

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #16 on: 09/12/2021 11:19 pm »
So suddenly the plan to just use another Atlas V for GOES-U like for the other GOES launches got crunched.
We don't know that. For all we know SpaceX could have won even if the Atlas V was still available.

What don't we know, and what would it matter? Part of the privilege of being a part of the NSL/NSS club is that you have to bid for any mission you are qualified for. Declining to bid requires reasonable justification, not simply "we think we're too expensive so why bother". Presumably ULA had a reasonable justification for declining to bid (as @oldAtlas_Eguy suggests). That SpaceX "could have won" if ULA had bid tells us what?

Offline soltasto

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #17 on: 09/13/2021 01:06 am »
So suddenly the plan to just use another Atlas V for GOES-U like for the other GOES launches got crunched.
We don't know that. For all we know SpaceX could have won even if the Atlas V was still available.

What don't we know, and what would it matter? Part of the privilege of being a part of the NSL/NSS club is that you have to bid for any mission you are qualified for. Declining to bid requires reasonable justification, not simply "we think we're too expensive so why bother". Presumably ULA had a reasonable justification for declining to bid (as @oldAtlas_Eguy suggests). That SpaceX "could have won" if ULA had bid tells us what?

We don't know if the Atlas V would have been the first choice. "the plan to just use another Atlas V for GOES-U like for the other GOES launches" most likely just doesn't exists as NASA can't just launch on something because it was always done like that.

Offline Kiwi53

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #18 on: 09/13/2021 01:22 am »
Not necessarily. What this tells us is: (1) ULA does not have a certified LV (e.g., Atlas) to bid; or (2) ULA does not have a credible plan for certifying Vulcan prior to GOES-U launch.
(emphasis mine)

Since we know that there are no more Atlas-V launch vehicles, ISTM that this means that ULA does not believe that Vulcan is likely to be certified for a Category-2 launch by April 2024.

Hmmmm


Offline baldusi

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Re: SpaceX FH : GOES-U : April 2024 : LC39A
« Reply #19 on: 09/13/2021 01:23 am »
So suddenly the plan to just use another Atlas V for GOES-U like for the other GOES launches got crunched.
We don't know that. For all we know SpaceX could have won even if the Atlas V was still available.

What don't we know, and what would it matter? Part of the privilege of being a part of the NSL/NSS club is that you have to bid for any mission you are qualified for. Declining to bid requires reasonable justification, not simply "we think we're too expensive so why bother". Presumably ULA had a reasonable justification for declining to bid (as @oldAtlas_Eguy suggests). That SpaceX "could have won" if ULA had bid tells us what?

We don't know if the Atlas V would have been the first choice. "the plan to just use another Atlas V for GOES-U like for the other GOES launches" most likely just doesn't exists as NASA can't just launch on something because it was always done like that.
GOES-U is the last of four GOES satellite of equal design. Keeping the same LV means no integration expenses. A known launch flow, etc. It’s not un heard off to make a block buy for a series. I understand NASA can’t do that, but there are certain synergies to launch again with Atlas V.

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