SpaceX Working on “factory model” of Operation for Continuous Rocket Launches

SpaceX is working on a “factory model” of operation that will ensure continued operation of rocket launch equipment. Efforts are aimed at achieving 144 launches planned for 2024.

SpaceX’s Vice President of Launch, Kiko Dontchev, said in a post on X that the company is working on a new operating model. SpaceX is focused on scaling launch speed, so it strives to ensure that launch equipment is always running, excluding time for scheduled or unscheduled maintenance.

He wrote that the company is currently undergoing routine maintenance on various equipment. But, the mentioned model assumes that the equipment will operate continuously, with the exception of maintenance.

“As we move to a higher launch rate, we are adopting more of a factory model where the equipment is always running except for planned and unplanned maintenance,” Dontchev said.

“JRTI (Just Read The Instructions) is going through a planned dry dock while pad 40 also undergoes a planned maintenance period. The bonus is sneaking in some work on Bob/Doug given the gap in east coast launches!” he added in response to another post.

In 2024, SpaceX aims to complete 144 launches. This means the company must conduct an average of 12 launches every month—that is, one launch every 2.5 days. This speed is truly impressive and requires smooth work of the equipment. Dontchev emphasized the importance of the launch system to achieve this goal. This includes all parts involved in the launch, from take-off pads to autonomous spaceport droneships. All this must withstand the high intensity of work, ensuring the achievement of 144 launches in 12 months.

In 2023, SpaceX dominated spaceflight. Of the 200 successful flights last year, 96 were carried out by Elon Musk’s company. SpaceX has conducted a record series of orbital launches using reusable Falcon 9 rockets and partially reusable Falcon Heavy rockets. The number of SpaceX launches increased by 57% compared to a year earlier. In 2022 there were 61, in 2021 there were 31, and in 2020 there were 26 successful launches.

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