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Old 28-07-2020, 08:15 AM
Startrek (Martin)
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Space X Starship SN5 Static Fire Test

For those who are interested in our small or micro steps towards the Moon, Mars and beyond , Space X will be carrying out a static fire test of Starship SN5 this morning from Boca Chica Texas
Unfortunately itís only streamed on 3rd party media like NASA Spaceflight channel
The test is aimed at firing the raptor engines for a couple of seconds to test hardware and systems of Starship leading up to a possible 150m ďhopĒ in a few months time
Exact time of ignition is not confirmed
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Old 28-07-2020, 09:17 AM
glend (Glen)
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Not much time left in the road closure window for today Martin. I see there was an RCS test but it does not look like they can be ready for static fire this time, as there is no icing of the tanks visible.Hopevi am wrong.
They are up agasinst some pretty serious obstacles over the past few weeks. Testing pretty much ground to a halt. There was obviously Hurricane Hanna which closed down the site, but prior to that it was evident that fewer and fewer workers were onsite ( judging by the reduced evidence of work and movement at the shipyard site in BocaChicaGals (Mary's) daily video updates. Also the car parks were mostly empty. I suspect the Covid is impacting the workers onsite, as Texas is being seriously hammered by it now. I know Elon is a big skeptic about it, as he was backing the ' just a flu' line, but even he has been very quiet the last couple of weeks, although he did suggest the 150m hop would take place by last weekend, which it did not. Time will tell, it might hop this week.
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Old 28-07-2020, 09:34 AM
Startrek (Martin)
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Thanks Glen

Yeh the static test is scrubbed for today, vehicles moving back to the pad

Suppose to be rescheduled for tomorrow ??
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Old 28-07-2020, 10:58 AM
glend (Glen)
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Thanks Glen

Yeh the static test is scrubbed for today, vehicles moving back to the pad

Suppose to be rescheduled for tomorrow ??
Well I might have been premature in that call. According to the LabPadre live feed, Elon is onsite and has been to the pad to inspect storm damage. There is apparently a Tweet about it. The test cycle seems to have been extended beyond the closure cutoff. They are saying there may be a static fire later tonight (local time).
Anyone interested can watch the LabPadre Utube channel for the live feed from the tower camera.

The link is here, it operates 24/7:

https://youtu.be/5QbM7Vsz3kg

The NASA Spaceflight Utube channel does not operate continuously, but usually posts videos from Mary each day, and has real time commentary and video for known scheduled events.
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Old 28-07-2020, 02:17 PM
glend (Glen)
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They worked through all the fueling/pressurisation steps to static fire but scrubbed it at the last minute. Reset for tomorrow.
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Old 28-07-2020, 03:09 PM
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multiweb (Marc)
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Originally Posted by Startrek View Post
The test is aimed at firing the raptor engines for a couple of seconds to test hardware and systems of Starship leading up to a possible 150m ďhopĒ in a few months time
Does this mean take off 150m in the air then land back on its feet?
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Old 28-07-2020, 03:15 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Does this mean take off 150m in the air then land back on its feet?
I guess so , didnít you see the Starhopper earlier in the year. It launched, went up vertically 150m and then drifted a hundred feet or so laterally before coming down for a safe landing on its landing gear.

Iím sure the Starhopper was a prototype for Starship ??

Glen seems to be more up to speed with Space X and their test program than I am
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Old 28-07-2020, 03:25 PM
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I guess so , didnít you see the Starhopper earlier in the year. It launched, went up vertically 150m and then drifted a hundred feet or so laterally before coming down for a safe landing on its landing gear.

Iím sure the Starhopper was a prototype for Starship ??

Glen seems to be more up to speed with Space X and their test program than I am
Oh wow! I must have been living under a rock. I wasn't aware of that one. I remember one that blew up on the launch pad but didn't realise they actually did a flight test already.
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Old 28-07-2020, 06:43 PM
glend (Glen)
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The current test vehicle is SN5, contains a Single Raptor engine. It is scheduled to fly up to 150m and land in the newly constructed landing pad a Boca Chica (which is the main SpaceX facility for the Starship program). Update from Elon via the Utube feeds, says there was a problem with the fuel spin valve this afternoon, which is why they scrubbed the static fire. They are working on it now, in the dark. And it is expected to be good to conduct static fire tomorrow morning. Static fire is just a short ignition of the engine (like 4 seconds), to make sure all the systems are operational before the test flight. SN5 carries externally mounted RCS control systems to control orientation during this short Hop. Later versions have internal RCS system.
They have several other test vehicles (SN6, SN7, and SN8) in the shipyard being readied for more ambitious flights, each of these are improvements on the previous model. Assuming SN5 hops to 150m then it will be retired and SN6 will be moved to the launch area, likely for the 20km test flight. SN6 will likely be the first of the full stack vehicles (which means it will have the nose section and maybe control fins). SN6 will carry three Raptor engines. SN5 is basically the tank section with a mass simulator in top to mimic the weight of a full ship.
SN5 does have landing legs, they are tucked up under the engine skirt and will deploy for landing on the pad. Subsequent version will have more robust landing leg designs, but unlikely to be like the Falcon 9 legs.
SpaceX is also constructing a high bay building, where the Super Heavy Boosters will be assembled. The SH boosters are needed to get a loaded Starship to high orbit and for Lunar and Martian flights.Each SH booster will likely contain between 27 and 31 Raptor engines. So they are going to need a bigger building.
A Starship can achieve low Earth orbit on its own, if lightly loaded, pushed by 7-9 Raptor engines. I won't go into the differences between atmo and vacuum engines right now.

Hope that helps.
Yes I am a tragic, I do watch the Utube feeds from the site, but I avoid the chat line these days.
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Old 29-07-2020, 03:51 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Glen
Where do think the final Starships will be assembled and tested ready to roll out and launch ? A modified VAB at the Cape ? They are expected to be launched from pad 39A.
I visited the KSC back in 2018 for 3 days and Space X at the time had only 2 main hangers which were around 30m x 20m x 12m high. Things may have progressed a lot since my visit

Martin
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Old 05-08-2020, 10:36 AM
glend (Glen)
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Starship SN5 Test Flight Success.

Success! Starship prototype SN5 tank section conducted a successful test flight this morning our time. It was limited to about 150m by the approval but it achieved it's goals and landed on the landing pad upright on its short drop down legs. It will now be taken back to the shipyard in coming days for removal of the Raptor engine for careful examination.
Next flight steps yet to be announced by SpaceX but they have two later versions to choose from. The original plan was to fly a three engine version up to a 20km altitude to test higher speed flight and landing maneuvers from altitude.

As to the question about future build site, it is Boca Chica. They are building a new high bay assembly building right now, which will take the Super Heavy Booster, which is required for Lunar and Mars insertion orbit lifting. The Starship will be able to achieve low Earth orbit with its full engine complement but with limited payload, so test flights mainly. No estimate of Super Heavy Booster assembly start. Super Heavy Booster launch pad is under construction at Boca Chica now.

I am sure the Utube channels monitoring SpaceX at Boca Chica will have SN5 flight test on repeat for the next week or so.
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Old 05-08-2020, 02:56 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Glen
I just watched the SN5 test hop , very impressive to say the least
Do you happen to know the thrust level ( @ sea level lbs ) of that single raptor engine during the test and the weight of the vehicle ?
Itís been a huge week for all at Space X
Martin
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Old 05-08-2020, 05:46 PM
glend (Glen)
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Glen
I just watched the SN5 test hop , very impressive to say the least
Do you happen to know the thrust level ( @ sea level lbs ) of that single raptor engine during the test and the weight of the vehicle ?
It’s been a huge week for all at Space X
Martin
Martin, SpaceX has just posted their own video of the test, taken from their drone hovering over the launch site, and using footage from their onboard camera in the engine bay. That video is by far the best i have seen because of the quality, the onboard view out the bottom of the ship, showing the leg deployment, and the lack of dust and smoke which obscured some of the flight in other ground based camera views.
As far as the Raptor thrust is concerned, I believe the single atmo Raptor can provide 220 tonnes of lift capacity, with plans for newer version to go as high as 250 tonnes. As far as the weight of the vehicle is concerned, the present configuration is mainly the tanks and engine sections, as can be considered fairly light. If you noticed the square box on top, that is the Mass Simulator, it is there to bring the weight up to the equivalent of a fully configured Starship with the nose section installed. The Mass Simulator, as carried by SN5, weighs 22 tonnes. It is highly likely that the Raptor was not throttled up for this last test flight.
All of the next test prototypes (SN6, 7 & 8) have a three engine thrust puck at the bottom of the tank section, as did SN5 (albeit it carried only one engine mounted slightly off centre, which can be compensated for by gimballing the thrust and use of the RCS thrusters to control vertical orientation - which can be seen firing in the test videos). I don't know at this point when they will move to three Raptors, but they will need them for the high altitude tests and to achieve super sonic speeds in the atmo. Later production orbital versions can carry up to 9 Raptors with the same area, so expanding the size is not required. The Super Heavy Booster will have 27 Raptors, some will be vacuum and some atmo.
Rumour has it that the Raptor will be pulled out of SN5 and sent back to the factory for tear down and analysis. The issue that they had with the turbo spin valve failing to open on a couple of previous test attempts will need to be resolved and updates applied to later versions of the Raptors. These engines need to be very reliable, and able to start without issues.

Last edited by glend; 05-08-2020 at 05:56 PM.
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Old 05-08-2020, 06:29 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Thanks Glen
Well detailed as usual
Just on the lift thrust , if the Super Heavy lifters power plant is 27 raptors each with a 250 tonne lift rating then total lift capacity would be around 6,700 tonnes
Is that correct ??

The Apollo Saturn 5 fully fuelled weighed 2,800 tonnes or around 6 million pounds and the 5 x F1 engines had a combined lift thrust of 7.5 million pounds

That means the Super Heavy Lifter will be 2.5 times the weight of a Saturn 5 !!
I donít know if Iíve got the maths right but this Super Heavy Lifter will be a launch vehicle of astonishing magnitude !!!
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Old 05-08-2020, 11:12 PM
glend (Glen)
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Thanks Glen
Well detailed as usual
Just on the lift thrust , if the Super Heavy lifters power plant is 27 raptors each with a 250 tonne lift rating then total lift capacity would be around 6,700 tonnes
Is that correct ??

The Apollo Saturn 5 fully fuelled weighed 2,800 tonnes or around 6 million pounds and the 5 x F1 engines had a combined lift thrust of 7.5 million pounds

That means the Super Heavy Lifter will be 2.5 times the weight of a Saturn 5 !!
I don’t know if I’ve got the maths right but this Super Heavy Lifter will be a launch vehicle of astonishing magnitude !!!
Honestly, the figures on the Super Heavy are pretty vague still, the only sure thing is the 27 Raptors that Elon has talked about. Data from the link below indicate:
Super Heavy now would stand about 68 meters tall. The 118 meter tall two-stage vehicle could ultimately weigh about 5,000 tonnes at liftoff and rise on about 7,500 tonnes of thrust, growing heavier from 2017 plans.* It would be able to boost 100 tonnes to LEO initially, with 150 tonnes as a future goal.*
Here is an old document provided by SpaceX on the details:

http://spacelaunchreport.com/bfr.html


Here is the SpaceX video of the test:


https://youtu.be/s1HA9LlFNM0

Last edited by glend; 05-08-2020 at 11:23 PM.
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