Falcon Heavy update

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Link here. The article provides a very good overview of the testing plans that will lead up to launch, hopefully sometime before the end of January.



  • ken anthony

    FH will be the riskiest vehicle to date (and hopefully, SpaceX will make it look easy.) Even more than the BFR will be. Already it’s obsolete (F9 will probably continue for longer.)

    Even landing the BFR will have less risk than the current cores as the greater mass will make it more stable (although perhaps less tolerable of landing in high winds?).

    So SpaceX can focus on making money until the next hurdle; Landing a BFS. Licensing the FH may be a logical step to increase market size? In part because SpaceX technology will already have moved on but it will still be a better rocket than its competitors are producing so why not collect the licensing fees? It could be a strategic move to keep Bezos from catching up? Although Bezos would likely build BE-4s for others?

    Perhaps I’m overly biased toward keeping SpaceX from owning the entire market which I think is unhealthy and possible. I continue to wish them greater success. They vitalized the entire industry.

  • Localfluff

    Monopoly is the best! When it is freely established, it’s like with Gilette. Their razor blades are the best, and keep getting better. When you’re so good that no one wants to even try to compete, but do something they are good at instead, that’s the pinnacle of a market economy. No need for, and no good idea to, compete with solving problems that are already very well solved.

  • Edward

    Localfluff wrote: “Monopoly is the best! When it is freely established, it’s like with Gilette.

    Actually, Gillette has competition with various brands of the electric razor. One reason for Gillette to continually improve is that there are small companies constantly trying to get into the safety razor market. Barbers still tend to use straight blade razors — the old technology.

    We tried the monopoly route in space access, where the governments of the world ruled the monopoly for half a century. All we got was what they wanted, not what we wanted. This is why in the 1990s there was a new effort to create a commercial space industry. It has taken a lot of effort to beat the governmental monopoly, but after two decades the new competition is finally making strides in doing things better, faster, and cheaper than the governments did.

    And why not? When the governments were competing during the Space Race (the race to the Moon), they were motivated to do things better and faster, but then they lost that motivation and made space access political, not economical. Our new commercial space industry is motivated to improve quality and reliability, but also to improve service and reduce costs.

    In both examples, razors and space, we see that competition is the best.

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