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Dunno if this got posted up the thread or not:

It's kind of amazing how well they characterized the descent and landing ops over a year ago. It tells us something about their behind the scenes work, and their understanding of the system as a whole.

We see stuff like SN9 tipping, or some dumb GSE issue at Boca Chica and it's easy to think they are doing this "seat of the pants," but they are more careful/precise than people often imagine.

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3 minutes ago, tater said:

Dunno if this got posted up the thread or not:

It's kind of amazing how well they characterized the descent and landing ops over a year ago. It tells us something about their behind the scenes work, and their understanding of the system as a whole.

Actually, it seems they've further refined descent and landing since that simulation was made. In that we see the flaps moving around quite significantly and the body of the vehicle pitching and yawing slightly, but with SN8 only tiny flutters from the flaps were required to keep it almost perfectly stable.

6 minutes ago, tater said:

We see stuff like SN9 tipping, or some dumb GSE issue at Boca Chica and it's easy to think they are doing this "seat of the pants," but they are more careful/precise than people often imagine.

Yeah, screw-ups and dumb mistakes will always happen from time to time, no matter how well-oiled the system is. They're not indicative of a deeply flawed operation, despite what anti-SpaceX people will have you believe.

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Pictures of the failed sn9 stand with weights attached make me think that they knew the ground anchors could fail and had no better option, which in turn makes me think the foundation is fundamentally inadequate and will require a full reconstruction of the high bay. It's really not that heavy when empty though...
Anyway, this is all speculation.

Edited by ExtremeSquared
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34 minutes ago, ExtremeSquared said:

Pictures of the failed sn9 stand with weights attached make me think that they knew the ground anchors could fail and had no better option, which in turn makes me think the foundation is fundamentally inadequate and will require a full reconstruction of the high bay. It's really not that heavy when empty though...
Anyway, this is all speculation.

Th failed stand seems like a dumb mistake. Then you realize this is the same way they are designing the rocket.

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1 hour ago, RealKerbal3x said:

What do you mean? They're designing the rocket in a dumb way?

Not exactly. But it seems to me that if you can build an orbital rocket, you should be able to design a stand for it that doesn't break. 

Super fast development has much higher risk of failure. If you are willing to accept the risk, you can go really fast, but you might make some dumb mistakes along the way.

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1 hour ago, Nightside said:

Th failed stand seems like a dumb mistake. Then you realize this is the same way they are designing the rocket.

The rocket that just flew and completely validated the skydiver and flip approach?

Also, did the stand fail? I have yet to see evidence that this happened. My personal guess is that the floor failed. I think if the stand were to fail, the results would have been more catastrophic, because it would be more likely to cascade as remaining stand components take not just more static load, but dynamic load.

It would not take much of a settling of the floor to create a problem with something that heavy/tall.

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6 minutes ago, tater said:

The rocket that just flew and completely validated the skydiver and flip approach?

Also, did the stand fail? I have yet to see evidence that this happened. My personal guess is that the floor failed. I think if the stand were to fail, the results would have been more catastrophic, because it would be more likely to cascade as remaining stand components take not just more static load, but dynamic load.

It would not take much of a settling of the floor to create a problem with something that heavy/tall.

Yes, the progress of the rocket is a clear example of the advantages. 

Ultimately the floor is part of the stand and they built them both.  It's not a simple design challenge, in that terrain, it should probable be built on piles. But a stand should be way easier to build than a rocket!  Any Texas oil refinery would have structures with similar requirements.

So yeah. If the rocket is a failure because the stand failed, I say that makes them look dumb. BUT, that doesn't matter as long as they don't mind looking dumb. (Elon's twitter output clearly shows he doesn't mind looking dumb.)

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23 minutes ago, Nightside said:

So yeah. If the rocket is a failure because the stand failed, I say that makes them look dumb. BUT, that doesn't matter as long as they don't mind looking dumb. (Elon's twitter output clearly shows he doesn't mind looking dumb.)

Do you look dumb if you put your rocket assembly area in a hurricane zone, and facility damage sets finishing back by long time periods every time a hurricane happens?

Obviously companies look dumb if they don't test stuff in the right way, say integrated software tests.

What if they design something in such a way that if an important part breaks they cannot easily get to it to fix it, and it delays the program by many months, or they go ahead and fly without redundancy, instead?

Cause now we have NASA, Boeing, and LockMart respectively all also looking pretty dumb.

Maybe they're all dumb sometimes in different ways?

Edited by tater
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24 minutes ago, Nightside said:

But it seems to me that if you can build an orbital rocket, you should be able to design a stand for it that doesn't break. 

I'd guess that the stand isn't built on site by SpaceX but rather contracted out to some other company. We see them get trucked in.

Though it looks as if they made some modifications to SN9's stand on site so that they could install Raptors, and that may have contributed to the failure.

24 minutes ago, tater said:

Also, did the stand fail? I have yet to see evidence that this happened. My personal guess is that the floor failed. I think if the stand were to fail, the results would have been more catastrophic, because it would be more likely to cascade as remaining stand components take not just more static load, but dynamic load.

We don't have any information but some are speculating that it was the pipe stands that the stand sits on that failed or fell over.

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It's also interesting to look at mistakes made that cost the company itself time/money, vs mistakes that cost the company... nothing at all, indeed, they end up making MORE money, because they get paid to do it again, paid to fix it, continue to get annual payments, or even get rewarded for being a great contractor.

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17 minutes ago, RCgothic said:

SpaceX is to significantly expand at Vandenberg. Just a month or so ago we thought they were winding down over there!

Well, they have to make the larger fairing, and vertical integration stuff for their AF contract—most launches for the AF are polar anyway, right, or at least high inclination.

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I've looked at it for a while now and the only damage I can see is on the fins so I think Snine will fly.

 

Also I am looking for a diagram of Starship with all the vents marked as I would use it for a detailed model of SN8 that includes functioning vents so I can hook it up to a smoke machine.

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If they took it out, and put it right back in, then the floor was not the issue. If they didn't redesign the stand, the stand was probably not the issue. They obviously know things we don't, maybe there was an accident (like someone banged into the stand with a lift or something?)

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21 hours ago, Nightside said:

But it seems to me that if you can build an orbital rocket, you should be able to design a stand for it that doesn't break. 

If you build civil structures with the safety factors of an aircraft or rocket you'd be laughed out. If that's what they did I'd be more surprised it only failed now.

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