The President announced that SpaceX's launch of a rocket was implemented at "cost less than half of conventional"


SpaceX, a private rocket development and launch company, launched the first stage booster of its reusable rocket "Falcon 9" on March 30, 2017Successfully launched reuse actuallyI did. Regarding the expenses incurred at that time, President Gwyn Shotwell of the company revealed it is "less than half the price of the past".

SpaceX gaining substantial cost savings from reused Falcon 9 -

SpaceX spent 'less than half' the cost of a new first stage on Falcon 9 relaunch | TechCrunch

Mr. Shotwell was held in Colorado on April 5, 2017The 33rd Space SymposiumAnd talked about the rocket launch technology that the Falcon 9 rocket can realize.

Among them, Mr. Shotwell said that it is less than half of the cost when launching a new rocket as usual as to the cost of launching the current SES - 10 mission. Although specific numerical values ​​and amounts are not disclosed, after the launch and return in April 2016 SpaceX is investigating the first booster of Falcon 9 rocket in detail, even if the cost at that time is deducted "half price It can be said that it is very significant in future private rocket development to be below.

The following movie contains a state that the first stage booster used in the SES - 10 mission was docked to the barge of a drone ship (barge). The one rising to 70,000 meters above the sky got back to the target of about 20 meters square on the sea surface by autopilot, returning the shock and relieving the shock and the series of ways to hit the "Fuu" comes out only as "awesome." not. It seems that only one of the "Merlin engines" that are equipped with nine units is used at the time of ship.

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It was the first re-launch this time, and although it is a Falcon 9 rocket which was re-launched almost one year after the first launch on April 8, 2016, Earlon Mask CEO is talking with the following tweets According to SpaceX, we aim to shorten this turnaround time to 24 hours finally.

Mr. Shotwell also shows similar goals for this. Mr. Shotwell said at the symposium, "This time I spent more time than I planned in the future," he says, "When considering reusability (reusability), re-launch in a really short time, for example an airplane I think that it is important to make a re-launch with a turnaround time that is as short as it will land and flip back and fly, "states the prospect of breaking common sense in conventional rocket technology.

However, this does not mean just a "positive hope", it is also a management task necessary for SpaceX to survive as a company. At a press conference on March 30, 2017, Mr. Mask has revealed that SpaceX has invested $ 1 billion (about 110 billion yen) in the development of reusable rockets so far It is extremely important to recover this cost steadily.

Also, even if the launch cost is greatly reduced, it is still unclear as to how much the launch fee actually charged to customers can be compressed. The current SpaceX is in the stage of verifying how much cost reduction can be achieved through actual launch, "To collect expenses for development, the price reduction rate offered to customers is actually It can not be the same as reductions, "Mr. Mask says.


In addition to the first stage booster, SpaceX also develops collection and reuse of parts called "fairings" covering the tip of the rocket. The fairing is huge, about 13 meters in length and 5.2 meters in width, and it plays a role of protecting cargo at the tip of the rocket by combining two pieces. It is a big part that will also cost 6 million dollars (about 700 million yen) made of aluminum honeycomb and composite carbon material, each of which is equipped with an injection device so that it can return to the earth on the targeted trajectory I will.


In the SES - 10 mission on 30th March, it seems that one fairing has returned to the ground and arrived at the sea, and SpaceX seems to be the first fairing collection. As this "one piece of 700 million yen" cost will be significant in the rocket launch expenses, it is believed that fairing collection technology will also be one of the factors that greatly influence SpaceX's plan. Mr. Shotwell shows a positive view on this technology, he says that in the rocket launched in 2017, more fairings will be recovered.

Regarding the collection of the fairing, Mr. Mask said, "There was a discussion as to whether fairing collection should be done, but please think, but if there is 700 million yen cash at hand, it will be in the sky If you fly away and crash into the ocean, do not you think to go get it? Of course I'm thinking. "

For SpaceX, it is indispensable to clarify the actual cost problem in the future. However, Mr. Shotwell sees that the skeptical gaze that the rocket industry has shown has gradually turned into confidence. Using science fiction writer Arthur C. Clark, "Three stages shown by people to innovative things" Mr. Shotwell said, "For the past 15 years"That's impossible.It has been continued being told. And still "It's possible, but it's not worth doingI also hear the voice saying. However,I always thought it was a good ideaI hear the reaction "I hear the reaction," I talk about the change in the surrounding reaction.

It is said that SpaceX is also considering collection of the second stage booster in addition to the first stage booster and fairing, so to speak, the possibility that "complete recovery of rocket" is ultimately the ultimate form . Indeed, it seems that interest will gather more like whether the SpaceX can grow well like the name of the president "shotwell (well launch)".

◆ Meanwhile, the same private rocket development company "Blue Origin"
The development of rockets is also underway at Blue Origin established by Amazon's Jeff Bezos CEO. At the beginning of March 2017, the "Falcon 9 rocket has a size larger than"New GlennLarge rocket engine scheduled to be installed in "BE-4It has been reported that the assembly of "Happy New Year" was completed. The second and third following are also in the assembly stage, and in the future it is supposed that inspection and performance evaluation will be carried out by actually putting the fire in the engine.

Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin finally assembled a large rocket engine, "The Amazon plan to the moon" also emerged - GIGAZINE

Blue Origin has a feeling that it is a few steps behind SpaceX, but Mr. Bezos said that he will talk about prospects for raising development funds by selling Amazon shares annually by 100 billion yen a year . It is a plan that can be done because it is Mr. Bezos who is one of the world's leading wealthians, but can you regain the difference that it seems to be between SpaceX and it can deliver the super gigantic rocket "New Glenn" to Mars? I can not take my eyes off.

Jeff Bezos will sell Amazon stock every year to fund Blue Origin - The Verge

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