SpaceX Breaks Ground On Falcon Heavy Launch Site | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

** Airborne 08.29.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne 08.29.14 **
** Airborne 08.27.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne 08.27.14 **
** Airborne 08.25.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne 08.25.14 **

Thu, Jul 14, 2011

SpaceX Breaks Ground On Falcon Heavy Launch Site

Vandenberg AFB Will Be The Home Of "The World's Most Powerful Rocket"

SpaceX CEO and chief rocket designer Elon Musk was joined by California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, 30th Space Wing Commander Colonel Richard W. Boltz and Lompoc Mayor John Linn to break ground Wednesday on a new launch site for the Falcon Heavy–Space Launch Complex 4 East at Vandenberg Air Force Base.


Falcon Heavy Artist's Rendering

SpaceX says this will be "the world’s most powerful rocket," with more than twice the payload-to-orbit capacity of the space shuttle, but at only one third the cost of the Boeing/Lockheed Delta IV Heavy. The Falcon Heavy will be the first ever rocket to break the $1,000-per-pound-to-orbit barrier, less than a tenth as much as the Shuttle.

With a launch site at Vandenberg and the Falcon Heavy, along with the medium-lift Falcon 9, SpaceX expects to be able to compete for the full range of US government business, provided competition is allowed. Currently, United Launch Alliance, a joint venture between Boeing and Lockheed, has a sole-source monopoly contract for Defense Department business. “These are difficult fiscal times for our federal government and the Falcon vehicles can save the Department of Defense almost $2 billion per year in launch costs, while increasing reliability and capability,” said Musk. “This presents a great opportunity for the DoD to avoid canceling other programs and minimize reductions in personnel as budgets contract.”

Falcon Heavy is to arrive at Vandenberg by the end of 2012, and its inaugural flight will follow soon after. It will be the most powerful rocket since the Saturn V, which launched the Apollo spacecraft to the moon. The SpaceX launch vehicle boasts 3.8 million pounds of thrust from its 27 engines–equivalent to fifteen 747s at full power.

Vandenberg AFB has been the proving ground for US defense vehicles for more than half a century, from the critical Intercontinental Ballistic Missile testing that helped win the Cold War to mighty launch vehicles like the aforementioned Titan. The Falcon family of launch vehicles will continue this rich tradition, with its wide range of capabilities for the NRO and other Department of Defense agencies, NASA and other civil customers, as well as commercial customers.

FMI: www.spacex.com

Advertisement

More News

Annual Oshkosh 2014 'Best/Worst Of' Award Selection Invites YOUR Participation!

YOU Can Contribute To The Annual List Compiled By The Staff and Readership of the ANN and Aero-TV! E-I-C Note: We're going to start naming names and dropping details THIS week--- t>[...]

Airborne 08.29.14: Google Drone!, Cessna's 10,000th, Bearhawk LODA

Also: Big Boeing Order, Napa Tower Quaked, Landsberg Retires, Galileo Falters Breaking News! Google has unveiled an exciting new UAV project, called Project Wing, which has been un>[...]

Aero-TV: The Tecnam Juggernaut -- SeaSky, P2008, P2010, Trainers, and Astore!

An Impressive Line-Up Continues To Make A Solid Impact On Sport Aviation ANN CEO and Editor-In-Chief, Jim Campbell seized the opportunity to talk with Phil Solomon, the CEO of Tecn>[...]

AD: Bombardier, Inc. Airplanes

AD NUMBER: 2014-17-04 PRODUCT: Certain Bombardier, Inc. Model CL-600-2B19 (Regional Jet Series 100 & 440) airplanes.>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (09.02.14)

FAA General Aviation Airports Report Beginning in 2010, the FAA began a national review of the general aviation airports resulting in two reports, General Aviation Airports: A Nati>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2014 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC