• Andrew Tubbiolo

    Yeah, that’s the kind of plume 39A was designed for. While I love the Falcon, in single stick mode, it’s kinda wimpy for this pad. Justice was done for 39A today, the old gods of Apollo and Shuttle got their well deserved burnt offerings. Falcon is about to become the most versatile space launch vehicle system yet. Only to be outmatched by the empty promise that was Energya.

    To borrow from space opera. “This launch system is the most powerful and versatile launch system on this planet. I suggest we use it!”

  • Jeff2Space

    Well done! Lots of steam, but no kaboom, just like it should be.

  • Terry Stetler

    Give ’em 2-3 years and something even larger could be there.

  • Zed_WEASEL

    Doubtful. Maybe like 6-9 years.

    Somehow don’t foresee enough down time to rebuild 39A before SpaceX retires the Falcon family.

    Texas will host the Biggest rocket in a few years.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    I’ll give them 7 to 15. 🙂 But I hope it’s sooner.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Man, I read that too about using Boca Chica for the BFR. They’re going to have to move everyone out of that town to give enough blast radius should something to wrong with the fuel-gox munition that a BFR is. Positively atomic in scale, totally tactical.

  • Michael Halpern

    likely it will be an artificial island to be safe

  • Zed_WEASEL

    There is less than a handful of permanent residents at Boca Chica village. The blast zone is only slightly bigger for the BFR. It is not linear.

    Also for your fuel-gox idea. It only gets near tac nuke level if all the methane and oxygen get mixed up then ignited. What will likely happened is that any RUD blast will be a small faction of the of the total energy of the propellants just like the Amos-6 incident. More like a BLU-82 FAE bomb blast than a tac nuke blast.

  • Terry Stetler

    I’m betting on both. Low inclinations & BEO at Boca, medium and high-ish from KSC.

  • JS Initials

    I did some calculations. If the SF burn was 12 seconds, then about (ballpark figure) 100 tons of propellant were consumed in flame. BTW, with the SF complete and apparently successful, there is ‘talk’ over at NSF forums that the launch will be a week away. That would be January, 31, 2018 if it happens on that day; 60th anniversary of America’s first artificial satellite. Even I am not old enough to remember the launch of Explorer 1, and I assume many of you weren’t even a twinkle in your parent’s eye.

  • JS Initials

    Something like that already happened outside of the town of Baikonour on July, 03, 1969. The rocket was called N1…I think you just gave a hint of how young you are.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    And your point is? The USSR did not have an FAA AST licensing office that won’t issue a launch license unless you can prove to them to a high degree that 3rd parties and property won’t be effected by a systems failure. And … Not that it matters but …. I was alive on July 03, 1969. And neither you nor I learned about what happened on that date until the late 1970’s.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Yeah, you’re right. I just used the nukemap page to set off a groundburst of a 1.2 kt bomb at the SX launch site on Boca Chica and all it did was take out the SX facility. The 1.2psi overpressure contour (window breaking) was about halfway to the housing development at Eichorn Blvd and Rt4. Even optimizing an airburst for an overpressure of 1.2 psi, the outer contour fell short of the housing development by about 1000 ft. I’m still not so sure the FAA is going to like having private homes that close to that much CH4, but it seems SX has already taken this into account. It’s still a pretty close thing.

  • Zed_WEASEL

    Will only quibble that SX will eventually either build a new pad at KSC or more likely an offshore coastal launch platform somewhere on the East coast..

  • Zed_WEASEL

    Actually people will pay to be that close to “history”. 🙂

  • Kirk

    With SpaceX scheduled to launch SES-16 on a reused Falcon 9 from the Cape on Tuesday, 30 January, that would be pretty tight. I’d expect them to need a few days between launches. The SES-16 booster should be recoverable, but they may dispose of it (as they did with the reflown booster which launched Iridium Next 4) so that the barge (ahem, ASDS) will be available to recover the FH center core, which I assume they really want to get back for post-flight analysis.

    SpaceX is scheduled PAZ & their two internet constellation demo sats on a reused Falcon 9 from Vandenberg on Saturday, 10 February, so it will be a busy two weeks. And their plan is for a busy year.

  • Terry Stetler

    I watched it on a round-screen B&W TV 🙂

  • So here’s a question:

    You can hear the staggered startup of the engines (I think I count five individual shock fronts), which makes perfect sense. But you can also hear multiple shocks on shutdown. What’s the deal there?

  • JS Initials

    There’s irony here. The Jupiter C first-stage used less than 1/2 the amount of propellant that Falcon Heavy used for the SF.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Hellzzzz yeah! Minimum safe distance party? Count me in.

  • It wasn’t even close to ten seconds. I’d guess maybe three at full thrust.

  • Vladislaw

    shut down the engines in the order they shut down on the flyback? 9 up then shut down 6 then 2 then 1 ?

  • Vladislaw

    They are not retiring the Falcon right away.. they decided to fly it as long as customers demand it.

  • I wouldn’t think so. After all, the boosters are separated from each other at MECO, and the core is just a vanilla-flavored F9.

    I’m thinking that the collapsing nozzle shocks put some kind of mechanical stress on the vehicle and/or pad hardware, but that seems… kinda weird.

  • Zed_WEASEL

    I did posted 6 to 9 years.

    The customers will choose a cheaper ride up as long as they are not the initial guinea pig IMO.

  • windbourne

    Im hoping that they will add more.

  • Vladislaw

    someone commented on this at nasaspaceflight but didn’t get time to finishing reading the thread.