Elon Musk says Spacex is planning for its first rocket reflight in either September or October.
Fourth rocket arrives in the hangar. Aiming for first reflight in Sept/Oct. pic.twitter.com/TqW8d6Cc3U
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 7, 2016
Next launch targeting June 14 from Cape Canaveral – 45 minute launch window opens at 10:32am ET, 2:32pm UTC pic.twitter.com/o8m9bIbfF8
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) June 3, 2016
Here are the estimated costs for one use and partially reusable and more reusable Spacex rockets.
One use Falcon 9 rocket launch cost $1233/lb (Low earth orbit)
One use Falcon Heavy launch cost $750/lb
The above costs are recently updated costs from the Spacex website.
SpaceX intends to cut the price of a Falcon 9 rocket launch by up to 30 percent when flying with reused first stage booster
First stage reusable Falcon 9 launch cost $860/lb
First stage reusable Falcon Heavy launch cost $525/lb
The cost of fuel and the Spacex rockets has been repeated a few times.
Fuel is only 0.3 percent of the total cost of a rocket, with construction materials accounting for no more than 2 percent of the total cost, which for the Falcon 9 is about $60 million.
Musk said that a rocket’s first stage accounts for three-quarters of its total price tag, so a vehicle with a reusable first stage can be produced at far less cost — assuming the hardware is fully and rapidly reusable.
A reusable rocket stage would be able to launch about 80% of the cargo of a one use rocket. The weight of fuel is needed to fly the stage back and the extra weight of landing legs and other modifications for reuse have to be carried.
Two launches with second reusing the first stage.
Capital cost – 1.25 times the cost of one full rocket.
0.6% for fuel
Launch cargo 1.6 times the cargo of one rocket.
78% of the cost of a single use rocket
Three launches with reuse of the first stage twice.
Capital cost – 1.5 times the cost of one rocket
0.9% for fuel
Launch cargo 2.4 times the cargo of one rocket
62.5% of the cost of a single use rocket
50% of the cost with five launches and four reuses of the first stage [$617 per pound for the new falcon 9 and $375 per pound for the heavy]
Reusable first stage falcon heavy [with about twenty reuses] can get down to about $250/lb [one third the one use price].
Reusable (about fifteen times) Falcon 9 rocket launch cost all stages reusable $120/lb [all three stages of a falcon heavy, should get to about ten times cheaper]
SOURCES- Twitter, Spacex, Elon Musk
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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