SPACEX FALCON 9V1.1 SECOND FLIGHT WILL LAUNCH SES-8 COMMUNICATION SATELLITE!
Photo Credit: SpaceX: (CLICK for full size photo as well as links to where you can watch LIVE online as well as mission/vehicle facts & resources below).
Second launch of the new Falcon 9v1.1 will take place this week. Best of luck to Mr. Musk and his Hawthorne team:
Monday, November5, 2013 at 2237 UTC (1737 EST) a SpaceX Falcon 9, version 1.1 rocket will be launching the Orbital Sciences built, GEOSTAR SES-8 communication satellite from Cape Canaveral, Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40 pronounced “SLICK-40”) in Florida. This will be the Falcon 9’s seventh flight “F9-7″ and the second for the new Falcon 9R v1.1 rocket and SpaceX’s first launch of a satellite into geostationary transfer orbit (GTO).
NOW FOR THE ROCKET: The Falcon 9R v1.1 rocket is a 2-stage partially reusable rocket with future ambitions of becoming fully reusable. The new version is 3.7 meters (12ft) in diameter and 68.4 meters (224.4 ft.) tall which is much taller than the Falcon 9 v1.0 or “Block 1” in order to house a longer fuel tank.
It is also fitted with upgraded and reconfigured Merlin family main engines replacing the 9 Merlin-1C with the more powerful Merlin-1D engines that will provide a thrust of nearly 600,200kg (1.5 million lb.) at sea level which equates to a significant payload capacity increase. Each Merlin-1D provides 147,000 lb. of thrust at sea level or about 55% more thrust than the original 1C engines. The new merlin 1-D engines are also equipped with the capability to throttle between 70% and 100%. All in all the Falcon 9 v1.1 is able to loft 13,150kg (28,990lb) into low Earth orbit (LEO); 4,850kg (10,690lb) into a geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO) or 2.9 tons to escape velocity.
MAIN COMPOSITE PAYLOAD FAIRING = the composite payload fairing is 13.1 meters (43ft) in length and 5.2 meter (17ft) in diameter.
SECOND STAGE = is powered by a single Merlin-1D Vacuum engine with aluminum-lithium alloy tanks fueled by liquid oxygen and rocket grade kerosene (LOX/RP-1). This stage can be restarted multiple times to place multiple payloads into desired orbits. For maximum reliability, the second stage has redundant igniter systems and has a burn time of 375 seconds.
INTERSTAGE = a composite structure that connects the first stage to the second stage and holds the release and separation system. Its al all pneumatic stage separation system for low shock, highly reliable separation that can be tested on the ground, unlike pyrotechnic systems used on most launch vehicles.
FIRST CORE/BOOST STAGE = is powered by nine (9) Merlin-1D engines with aluminum-lithium alloy tanks fueled by liquid oxygen and rocket grade kerosene (LOX/RP-1). The core stage has a burn time of 180 seconds and is gradually throttled. Its 9 new Merlin-1D engines have been reconfigured from the square “Tic-tac-toe” pattern to the circular “Octaweb” configuration. The 9 engine system can sustain up to two engine shutdowns during flight and still successfully complete its mission.
WATCH THE LAUNCH LIVE AT: http://www.spacex.com/webcast/
Orbital Sciences SES-8 Spacecraft: http://www.orbital.com/SatellitesSpace/Communications/SES-8/
SpaceX Falcon 9 v1.1 page: http://www.spacex.com/falcon9
SpaceX Twitter: https://twitter.com/SpaceX
Elon Musk Twitter: https://twitter.com/elonmusk
NASA Spaceflight page for the Falcon 9 v1.1 and SES-8 mission: http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2013/10/ses-8-florida-next-falcon-9-v1-1-launch/
Spaceflight101 SES-8 mission page: http://www.spaceflight101.com/spacex-falcon-9-v11-ses-8-launch-updates.html
Space Launch Report Falcon 9 data page: http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/falcon9.html
Space Launch Report Falcon 9 v1.1 data page: http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/falcon9v1-1.html#config
Spaceflight 101 standard Falcon 9 rocket page: http://www.spaceflight101.com/falcon-9-launch-vehicle-information.html