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28 minutes ago, RCgothic said:

It's there really nothing going on in the High Bay at the moment?

Nope, depending on how quick B7 and B8 go S25 may go there once it's too high for the mid bay. They have more bays than what their current production rate needs, so that's what needs to increase in the future

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4 hours ago, tater said:

 

Very much looking forward to this. Between Grace and Webb, exoplanet science is going to go pretty far. We won't find nearly as many planets as we did with Kepler, but we will gain a lot more knowledge on the ones we already found. And, hopefully, even the first tentative signs of life.

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8 hours ago, tater said:

 

2026.. I wonder if fh will even still be flying by then. Perhaps it can do things that ss/sh can't? 

 

One reason I can see is boosting it beyond Leo. Starship would have to be refueled for that right?

Edited by Flying dutchman
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What FH has that Starship doesn't is a Falcon Family flight heritage that supports flagship class NASA missions.

If Starship works as planned, refilling will be no big deal and it'll be cheaper and more capable than F9 and FH in every way.

But F9 and FH will continue to fly for as long as their reputation supplies them with profitable missions that would reject a transfer to Starship.

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34 minutes ago, RCgothic said:

What FH has that Starship doesn't is a Falcon Family flight heritage that supports flagship class NASA missions.

If Starship works as planned, refilling will be no big deal and it'll be cheaper and more capable than F9 and FH in every way.

But F9 and FH will continue to fly for as long as their reputation supplies them with profitable missions that would reject a transfer to Starship.

On top of F9 heritage, FH itself will likely have flown three very high profile missions by 2026: Europa Clipper, Psyche (provided it survives cancellation and rescheduling, which I hope it does) and that earth orbit flagship mission I forgot the name of

Edit: PACE, that was the name

Edited by Beccab
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14 hours ago, Flying dutchman said:

2026.. I wonder if fh will even still be flying by then. Perhaps it can do things that ss/sh can't? 

 

One reason I can see is boosting it beyond Leo. Starship would have to be refueled for that right?

One issue with a reusable launch vehicle (or at least an upper stage) is the case where you want to send something far away and don't care about ever getting it back. A one-way trip to the L2 point by a simple upper stage is likely cheaper than a return flight by something like a Starship.

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5 hours ago, RCgothic said:

But an expendable starship is an extremely easy step. Just strip off the fins, heat shield and header tanks and put in a jettisonable payload fairing.

In theory, yes, but you still have to certify a new type. Like they aren't sending something like the JWST on an untested, expendable variant "just cuz" the reusable one worked.

But In hindsight, they are making the HLS...so maybe? I guess we need to see how big the new satellites are.

Edited by Meecrob
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Sending something to Earth-Sun L2 shouldn't require a disposable Starship, nor a special variant.  

Assuming the payload has station keeping thrusters, a refuelled Starship should be able to boost the payload onto an Earth-Sun L2 transfer orbit, separate from the payload, then make a small braking burn to set itself up for re-entry in a week or so with a similar re-entry velocity to a lunar return.   (It might need extra battery capacity or solar panels, but Lunar variants would need those as well).

Alternatively a refuelled Starship should have enough dV for a trip to L2 and back, with  re-entry velocity a little over Lunar return velocity.  I wouldn't expect the round trip to take more than a couple of months.  (From memory Webb was about 30 days to L2)?   So it probably needs solar panels, but Mars variants will need those as well.

 

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Ok, but someone is gonna have to pay for the release mechanism, all related hardware and associated R&D? Or you can send it on one that is already certified.

Edit: I missed your solar panels bit...same deal though....who is paying for that? Like I know SpaceX wants to be a bus service as they have done to LEO, but right now, they can't exactly open a profitable line to Earth-Moon L2.  Like its not some untapped market nobody can reach, its just not useful for lots of purposes.

Edited by Meecrob
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1 hour ago, Meecrob said:

Ok, but someone is gonna have to pay for the release mechanism, all related hardware and associated R&D?

Sure, which is true for every launch vehicle. The most notorious case is Zuma and Northrop's custom release mechanism that failed to work

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Stream has started, the fog is obscuring the rocket but there's no weather violation. T-1 minutes and the rocket is go

Some data from the stream:
- the current launch will have a pad turnaround of 11 days
- no issues being tracked for this launch
- fourth flight for this booster
- next month there's 4 polar starlinks from vandy scheduled, first in two weeks from now

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