Weather delays Falcon 9 launch till Thursday

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High winds has forced SpaceX to delay today’s commercial Falcon 9 launch two days.



  • Michael

    I have a couple of questions that may seem silly but they intrigue me.

    Shortly after the second stage engine starts up a band of some sort can be seen flying off the the bottom of the bell. What function is being performed?

    Secondly, where is the Space X firing room for LC39A? For Shuttle we used FR1 for most OPF and Pad operations, even when we went off Pad B. We occasionally used FR2, and FR3 was left as a monument to Apollo. I imagine FR1 is reserved for SLS, between the various OPF bays and on-going projects I can imagine FR2 being used, and I cannot see NASA giving up FR3. So where? I see a building adjacent to the HIF that may be the location, but I keep thinking about how close it is to the launch mount –- but then I remember at Vandenberg you could spit from the control room at Slick 6 and hit the pad.

    Anyway, just curious.

  • wayne

    I’ve noticed that band as well.
    –I could speculate, but I know we have actual rocket-scientists, who can & will enlighten us, so I’ll refrain.
    (There are no silly questions— just silly answers!!)

  • Calvin Dodge

    Per reddit:

    That is the second stage engine nozzle stiffener ring. The bell nozzle on the MVac is not very rigid (this is for a variety of reasons, most importantly are weight savings and ensuring good thermal radiative properties to keep it cool), especially when the engine is not firing. The ring keeps the nozzle from flexing too much during the first stage burn. After the MVac is ignited, the positive pressure from the engine firing pushes on the inside of the nozzle which prevents it from flexing, so the stabilizer ring is no longer needed and it falls off, as it is designed to do.

  • wayne

    Calvin Dodge–
    Thank you very much for that factoid!

  • Michael

    Calvin Dodge–
    Thank you for the info

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