Dec 05 2017

SpaceX Scheduling Madness

This is going to be interesting – a two-fold article. On one half, I have a bit more to say about what upcoming SpaceX content I have coming, and on the other half, I feel it worth discussing the actual current scheduling that SpaceX is launching on in the upcoming months.

On my end, as I mentioned a few days ago in “About The Upcoming SpaceX Articles… ” I’ve got many delayed SpaceX related subjects I want to discuss, and I want to get them out before the end of the year, or at least before the the planned January launch of the Falcon Heavy.  As I said, there’s been a month delay in me putting out some of the entries I wanted to before now, so I’m kind of in a crunch to actually say what I feel I need to in the time I have – once I get all of this out, though, I know I never have to deal with it again – I can always cite back to those entries and if I need to update them, or address something new, I will.

On a side note, to address it now, if anyone wonders why I’m putting so much focus on this, it’s because I can’t escape it in something I like. I can’t pay attention to the space scene without, well, the “cult of SpaceX” showing itself in one way or another. The attitude ruins what has been one of my longest interests in life – space travel and rocketry.

So to answer why I care so much, it’s a direct reaction to how much you, or others, care, and rather than carry on pointless arguments on social media, I find it better to compose these articles to express what I have to say, address points and counterpoints that do come up, or could come up, and let them stand as they are online for when I need to cite back to them or for people to find and consider – and yes, people do find them and they do read them. It isn’t that I want to tick people off or be annoying, just that I feel a counterpoint must be provided.

Basically, don’t be surprised at the flood of content coming related to SpaceX – once the month is over it should die down for a good, long while.

Anyway, moving onward to the actual SpaceX launch schedule, we have an interesting little chain of events. A launch planned for the end of last month, a mystery payload known as “Zuma” was delayed due to something being wrong with the payload fairing.

This makes me laugh a bit on the grounds that I’ve seen people criticize United Launch Alliance over issues they have had which have caused delays – not so funny when your own company can’t get something off the ground, now is it?

In any case, that has shuffled things around, so that we have coming up, I believe on the 8th (nope, wrong) 12th the launch of the next Dragon resupply vehicle to the ISS. This launch is supposed to be the first one in over a year from Pad 40, which has recently been repaired: it has been out of use since the explosion in September of 2016; that pad being operational again would open up Pad 39A, the one they have been using for all East Coast launches this year, for the upcoming Falcon Heavy test firing and, if things go well, a 2018 launch.

I’m sure there’s another launch planned somewhere in there, but I can’t quite find out for sure without having to go out of my way to get the info – you would think the SpaceX website would list this info in detail but nope, that just acts as a way for the average person to see successes and to read up on how wonderful everything the company does is. You know, the typical stuff a generic business in 2017 would have, not the kind of in depth stuff you would expect for something like this.

Oh, wait, in planning for future articles I saw there IS a Vandenberg launch planned later in December. Of course it would take some other source to provide this info.

Whatever, all snark aside, they have had to do some shuffling on their launch plans, and quite a bit is riding right now on 39A being clear for Falcon Heavy, and SLC-40 being able to take over Falcon 9 launches while Falcon Heavy operations continue. As I said, I’m sure there are other launches being pushed around, but I can only discuss what I hear about, so, yeah.

We’ll see how things pan out.


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