Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register
  • The final cut of the 9th episode of the Tesla Motors Club Podcast, featuring Chad Schwitters, the former president of Plug In America, is now available. You can watch it now on YouTube or listen to it on all major podcast networks.

SpaceX F9 - 14th Reuse - CRS-15 - SLC-40 - Return 8/3

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
6,431
8,666
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Launch Date: June 29, Friday
Launch Window: 5:41 AM EDT (0941 GMT)
Launch site: SLC-40 Cape Canaveral
Booster Recovery: Very unlikely
Booster Type: B1045 - Block 4 - Reused from TESS (Dragon is reused)
Orbit: ISS in LEO
Dragon Return - August 3rd

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the 17th Dragon spacecraft mission on its 15th operational cargo delivery flight to the International Space Station. The flight is being conducted under the Commercial Resupply Services contract with NASA. This is the third and final launch of the first extension to the original CRS contract.

This will be the 12th launch of the year for SpaceX if it maintains the current schedule.

The TESS booster that will be reused returned in spectacular shape from a very easy ASDS recovery. CRS launches are also typically easy on the booster. So if SpaceX does a recovery on this booster, it is likely to be reused for a third launch. Edit: it is now unlikely to be recovered at all. The IFA will be done with a Block 5. The Dragon capsule is reused from CRS-9.

According to a NASA Inspector General report of June 2016, CRS-15 is expected to carry 2,410 kg (5,310 lb) of pressurized mass and 900 kg (2,000 lb) of unpressurized. According to a 2016 presentation, the external payload manifested for this flight is ECOSTRESS and a Latching End Effector for Canadarm2.

SpaceX CRS-15 - Wikipedia
Commercial Resupply Services - Wikipedia
 
Last edited:
  • Informative
  • Like
Reactions: Snerruc and Rik59

adiggs

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
Sep 25, 2012
5,667
19,934
Portland, OR
I thought SpaceX had said they only plan on doing one reuse for non Block 5 boosters.

They have. I believe @Grendal's point is that if there were any pre Block 5 boosters to get a shot at visiting space 3 times, this is the one.

Edit: And a hint that SpaceX is thinking along these lines is that they do a recovery of the booster rather than discard it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: mongo and Grendal

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
6,431
8,666
Santa Fe, New Mexico
I thought SpaceX had said they only plan on doing one reuse for non Block 5 boosters.
That has been the plan. However, the upcoming In Flight Abort test will be intentionally throwing away a booster. The current rumor is that it will reuse the B1040 Koreasat booster, but as far as I can tell there is a possibility of reusing this booster for a third launch for that test. So I am leaving it open until we get confirmation from SpaceX. If they recover the booster then that is a good indication that they plan on reusing it.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: croman and mongo

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
Mar 6, 2013
9,391
25,328
San Diego
Does SpaceX have any new block 4 boosters in inventory waiting for first use? The reason I ask is that it'll probably be a few months at least before SpaceX will want to do anything with block 5. They are currently taking their recovered block 5 apart to verify that it will indeed be able to refly without much refurbishment going forward. So that booster is out of commission for a while. And I can't see SpaceX building any new block 5 boosters until they've verified their design assumptions on block 5 are correct. So that leaves previously reflown boosters going forward or an unused block 4 for the dwindling number of customers that want a new booster.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Grendal

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
6,431
8,666
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Does SpaceX have any new block 4 boosters in inventory waiting for first use? The reason I ask is that it'll probably be a few months at least before SpaceX will want to do anything with block 5. They are currently taking their recovered block 5 apart to verify that it will indeed be able to refly without much refurbishment going forward. So that booster is out of commission for a while. And I can't see SpaceX building any new block 5 boosters until they've verified their design assumptions on block 5 are correct. So that leaves previously reflown boosters going forward or an unused block 4 for the dwindling number of customers that want a new booster.

A second Block 5 B1047 has been tested at McGregor. There should be a third new Block 5 B1048 ready to leave the factory at any time. B1049 is probably also close to completion. NASA said that the groundwork for B1051 was already being done back in late March. B1051 is slotted for the non-manned demonstration launch of the Dragon 2 capsule.

Meanwhile, SpaceX will disassemble B1046 and check its new systems to see how well they held up. I'm sure B1047 (which is likely to be Telstar 19V in June) will launch before the full breakdown is complete.
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
Mar 6, 2013
9,391
25,328
San Diego
A second Block 5 B1047 has been tested at McGregor. There should be a third new Block 5 B1048 ready to leave the factory at any time. B1049 is probably also close to completion. NASA said that the groundwork for B1051 was already being done back in March/April. B1051 is slotted for the non-manned demonstration launch of the Dragon 2 capsule.

Meanwhile, SpaceX will disassemble B1046 and check its new systems to see how well they held up. I'm sure B1047 (which is likely to be Telstar 19V in June) will launch before the full breakdown is complete.

Why am I surprised that SpaceX isn’t doing it the slow methodical way? You’d think I would have learned by now!
 
  • Like
  • Funny
Reactions: Grendal and e-FTW

mongo

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2017
14,545
49,181
Michigan
Does SpaceX have any new block 4 boosters in inventory waiting for first use? The reason I ask is that it'll probably be a few months at least before SpaceX will want to do anything with block 5. They are currently taking their recovered block 5 apart to verify that it will indeed be able to refly without much refurbishment going forward. So that booster is out of commission for a while. And I can't see SpaceX building any new block 5 boosters until they've verified their design assumptions on block 5 are correct. So that leaves previously reflown boosters going forward or an unused block 4 for the dwindling number of customers that want a new booster.

Not related to current inventory: The Block 5 should be cheaper to build given the bolted octoweb and other known reuse improvements. Making more 5's even if they are not fully vetted might make sense over more 4's.

Also need the 7 launches (with new COPVs) for NASA astronaut rating.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Grendal

mongo

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2017
14,545
49,181
Michigan
It all depends on your comfort level and your confidence on your design

True true.

And if you have common engine mounting structures.

It seems like with the engine development testing, production unit testing, and rocket pretesting that the big questions will be on the new legs, octo-web, and thermal protection systems. There could be a flaw in their latest approach with those that gets addressed by new production.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Grendal

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
6,431
8,666
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Successful launch, MECO, SECO, and deployment.
NASA TV coverage was also done. You get two different versions of the launch with different angles shown at times. So check out both.
The second stage went into sunlight. So there are some incredible pictures out there of backlit plumes.
Last Block 4. So likely the last throw away booster for a very long time.
 
  • Like
Reactions: bmah and Nikxice

Bobfitz1

Active Member
Supporting Member
Sep 24, 2012
1,222
3,944
Ludlow, Vt
Last Block 4. So likely the last throw away booster for a very long time.

Completing the development and now switchover to Block 5 feels like a quiet milestone for SpaceX on a par with
pulling off Falcon Heavy. It brings Musk's vision of reusability to fruition, ensures SpaceX dominance of global launch market for next half decade or more, and is the stepping stone to full reusability with the BFR/BFS.
That said, there is no question that the first FH flight was as dramatic a launch as we'll see until the first BFR/BFS flight.
The next FH launches can't come soon enough!
 

Products we're discussing on TMC...

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top