Re: What comes next?
I am sure the ULA would love to see some flight ready BE4 engines, only 4 years late.
66 posts • joined 13 May 2012
Once had to sit in the car outside a distillery in Scotland while on holiday explaining to a senior software engineer for a German provider of Mainframe Laser Printers that yes, JES2 got restarted when you IPL the mainframe.
This was in the 90’s and I had the misfortune to be in the only place there was a Vodafone signal in miles – ‘not’ helped that the phone was in it’s car cradle so using the cars antenna to pull in the weak signal.
I did catch up with the family before they went on the tour, after taking the phone off the cradle and switching it off.
Can the Falcon launch the JWST?
The F9, no, the FH, yes.
JWST is 6500Kg at launch and requires a C3 (characteristic energy) of -0.7Km2/s2 to get to L2.
The F9 recovering to the droneship can do 3400Kg, the FH can do 6820Kg recovering all three boosters.
So the FH can launch the JWST and recover all three boosters, but with a small margin for any under performance (e.g. loose a Merlin on the way up). I suspect if bidding today it would be an FH and expend the centre booster to give the extra margin which NASA love.
My understanding is the A5 launcher is the ESA's buy in to the project to get access to the JWST.
They tried a darkened satellite last year. I understand that although it reduced the brightness it caused a lot of thermal problems.
Keeping a satellite cool is not easy where all you have is radiation to get rid of heat, so having a large non-reflective surface facing a nice big heat source, e.g. the Earth, does not help with your thermal management.
I am sorry it did not launch last night, been waiting a long time.
But I am pleased that the presence of so many big wigs did not cloud their decision making.
The weather for the weekend does not look much better, maybe they should look to a morning launch before the summer thunderstorms have a chance to build up, but the timing is dependent of where the ISS is and if you launch when the ISS is not in the right place in relation to the launch site, Dragon will need to burn a lot of fuel making the required orbital changes to meet up with the ISS.
But they had a full wet dress rehearsal, which improves the confidence in the vehicle and procedures.
The RD-180 is actually built in Russia. The ULA has a license to build them in the US, but the bean counters must have decided it was better to leave the production of a critical bit of defence infrastructure in Russia.
I wonder if ULA are getting a bit nervous in case Vulcan is not ready before they run out of RD-180's for Altas V.
No, this was the only in-flight Abort test.
One piece of info gleamed by someone single framing through the video stream was that the Dragon must of reacted within 80ms of the lost of thrust and initiated the abort. They worked out that the time from the start of the exhaust plume starting to reduce to the time the Dragon parted company was 180ms and it takes about 100ms to pressurise the abort system tanks and activate the super draco's
Well, the Delta IV production line is being run down, and according to ULA, it takes about 3 years from order to delivery, so unless the USAF or NRO are open to giving up on a couple of their Delta IV heavies (Can't see that happening).......
This leaves only the Falcon Heavy, even then it would take two launches to put the the Orion + service module + boost stage into orbit.
Solar panels for power, the reaction wheels for fine pointing (powered by the solar panels), then the hydrazine powered RCS for things like unloading the momentum built up in the reaction wheels etc.
The reaction wheels failed over time so it had to use the RCS to do the pointing, which used more hydrazine.
So after 9 1/2 years, it had used up its 11.7 Kg of hydrazine. The camera was failing as well, so it was time for Kepler to retire with a job well done.
Short answer is yes.
Long Answer is yes, Dragon-2 has a dry mass of 6,400Kg, so adding fuel, etc you are looking at around 10,000Kg, a Falcon 9 can do about 3300Kg to the Moon. It needs a Falcon Heavy, expending the centre core.
BFS (The spaceship part of the BFR) is schedule to start Grasshopper type testing next year. Orbit? 2020-21 I think.
The diameter of the Falcon 9 was dictated by the max size which could be transported on the US roads on a daily basis.
SpaceX setup in Hawthorn as there is a pool of labour skills there which he needed and he picked up some suitable buildings at a very good price (ex. Northrop). They have never been adverse to picking up a bargain, the transporter they use to move the cores about KSC and CCAFB was originally built by NASA to move the Shuttle about, they picked it up for a song and converted it, saved a million or so.
For big pork space, look up SLS.
Had basically the same thing happen to me one night shift in the early '80s. In this case it was an 3800 (we had the fanfold paper version). There was a paper jam under the hot fuser and the cut off did not work.
It started to smoke so I quickly powered it off and switched off the power to it.
Then rang IBM for a CE.
Me, "we have a problem with our 3800 printer, serial 'what ever the serial number was'
IBM ' OK, any error codes'
Me ' No, just smoking well, I have cut the power to it'
IBM ' OK, CE on the way'
A couple of jobs later I working in a office building which was the headquarters for a Brewery.
We had a spat of false fire alarms, the building had a automatic alarm to the local firestation, so within about 5 minutes a couple of engines would turn up. Now if there are too many false alarms we would be charged, so the facilities manager would nip into the staff shop and grab a few trays of beer and slip them to the firemen.
The next time the alarm went off, 4 engines from two stations turned up.....
This was originally scheduled to be launched in 2016, but a problem with one of the instruments caused it to miss the 2016 window. At the time it looked like the eastern range (Basically KSC and in the Atlas's case, CCAFS) would have scheduling issues so they moved it to Vandenberg. Now the eastern range is even busier so it was kept at VFB.
The mission was originally sized for a Delta II, but they have been just about retired, last one is launched in September from VFB and the Delta II pad at CCAFS had been decommissioned, so the Atlas V 401 was selected, which is a lot more powerful vehicle, so does not need the assist of being launched to the east to send InSight to Mars. InSight is about 850Kg, the 401 can launch about 2000Kg from VFB to Mars.
Is it dumb to try and recover 75% of the LV for re-use? (It has been stated that the 1st stage makes up 75% of the hardware costs of a F9).
A lot of missions do not require the LV's full performance, so use the spare fuel to recover the 1st stage. SpaceX has always said that if the mission requires the LV's full performance, then they do not fit the legs and the 1st stage is expended.
It has been said that in the days of the Shuttle, the range safety officers made the point of not mixing with the astronauts in case they had to terminate a shuttle flight and kill the astronauts.
The shuttle had no effective escape system. Only the first test flights did the Shuttle have ejection seats, and that was just for the two pilots.
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