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#1 2012-06-16 15:42:46

RGClark
Member
From: Philadelphia, PA
Registered: 2006-07-05
Posts: 534
Website

On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Two posts to my blog.

This first one argues that the importance of what SpaceX accomplished is that other
companies can do it too and at similar costs. There was nothing particularly
innovative about the SpaceX engines or of their structures. All that would be
required is to use normal good business practice in privately developing the
launchers and the spacecraft:

On the lasting importance of the SpaceX accomplishment.
http://exoscientist.blogspot.com/2012/0 … pacex.html

And this one proposes the orbital DC-Y as a private, commercial passenger
launcher at a few hundred million development cost:

On the lasting importance of the SpaceX accomplishment, Page 2.
http://exoscientist.blogspot.com/2012/0 … ex_15.html


  Bob Clark


Nanotechnology now can produce the space elevator and private orbital launchers. It now also makes possible the long desired 'flying cars'. This crowdfunding campaign is to prove it:
Nanotech: from air to space.
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/nano … 13319568#/

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#2 2012-06-17 09:58:08

GW Johnson
Member
From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 4,571
Website

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Nice posts,  Bob.

GW


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#3 2012-06-17 16:47:03

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,078

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Agreed nicely done.

If I recall some of the head start on the design path was purchased and gotten through the technical exchange with Nasa plus once it looked like a falcon 1 was nearing its final stages of design Nasa stepped in again to aid in finallizing it.

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#4 2020-10-05 08:41:15

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

This topic seemed (to me at least) the best fit for the update at the link below ...

https://www.fool.com/investing/2020/10/ … ets-now-w/

The Motley Fool organization looked into the contracts recently awarded to SpaceX by the new US Space Force.

Savings estimated by the analysts exceed the predictions by SpaceX itself.

However, it should be kept in mind that these ** are ** estimates.

The article includes impact assessment for rivals, including NASA, other competing US organizations, and foreign government competitors.

(th)

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#5 2020-10-05 19:53:35

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,078

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Part of the issue is they pay for the technology and are not creating unobtainum for building on cutting edge rather space x is working to make a robust easier manufactured parts.

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#6 2020-10-06 05:00:52

Forrest White
Banned
Registered: 2020-10-05
Posts: 6

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Despite the fact, Boeing was the leading commercial company and no one actually understands why NASA cooperates with SpaceX, today SpaceX proves how much values it brings. They plan the mission to ISS this month.

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#7 2020-10-06 19:16:11

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,078

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Boeing has the military paper trail process which takes longer and is more expensive to do.
Space x can short cut much of the triplicate paper that normally would be required....

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#8 2020-10-09 02:24:35

RGClark
Member
From: Philadelphia, PA
Registered: 2006-07-05
Posts: 534
Website

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

tahanson43206 wrote:

This topic seemed (to me at least) the best fit for the update at the link below ...
https://www.fool.com/investing/2020/10/ … ets-now-w/
The Motley Fool organization looked into the contracts recently awarded to SpaceX by the new US Space Force.
Savings estimated by the analysts exceed the predictions by SpaceX itself.
However, it should be kept in mind that these ** are ** estimates.
The article includes impact assessment for rivals, including NASA, other competing US organizations, and foreign government competitors.
(th)


Thanks for the interesting link.

  Bob Clark


Nanotechnology now can produce the space elevator and private orbital launchers. It now also makes possible the long desired 'flying cars'. This crowdfunding campaign is to prove it:
Nanotech: from air to space.
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/nano … 13319568#/

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#9 2021-01-26 13:27:36

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Thanks to RGClark for encouragement in #8 of this topic ...

The article at the link below is about the growth of SpaceX's launch business, and in particular the Rideshare program.

I am interested in this program because the promising topic of RobertDyck (Large Ship et al) is vulnerable due to lack of validation of the physics of the proposed vessel.  It may be possible (somehow) to collect the funds to fly an experiment to validate the proposal for a single body rotating passenger vessel with no bearings between the rotating habitat and the central shaft of the ship.

I'd very much like to see this innovative concept succeed for a variety of reasons, but I would prefer the risks of failure were reduced substantially.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/lift-spacex- … 46206.html

The reusable rocket ferried 133 commercial and government spacecraft and 10 Starlink satellites to space - part of the company’s SmallSat Rideshare Program, which provides access to space for small satellite operators seeking a reliable, affordable ride to orbit, according to the company.

(th)

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#10 2021-01-26 18:13:21

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Speaking of SpaceX ...

Axiom’s first customers include Larry Connor, a real estate and tech entrepreneur from Dayton, Ohio, Canadian financier Mark Pathy and Israeli businessman Eytan Stibbe, a close friend of Israel’s first astronaut Ilan Ramon, who was killed in the space shuttle Columbia accident in 2003.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/fl … -ntp-feeds

This is a private flight to the ISS ... $55 mm per ticket.

Nice!

(th)

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#11 2021-02-09 11:33:28

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

In another topic, the idea of shoving Starships toward Mars without consuming any of their onboard propellant is under discussion.

The SpaceX Starship system is a proposed fully reusable, two-stage-to-orbit super heavy-lift launch vehicle under development by SpaceX. The system is composed of a booster stage, named Super Heavy, and a second stage, also referred to as "Starship".

The above snippet from the Wikipedia article on SpaceX covers the suggestion I have here...

A Super Heavy could boost a duplicate of itself to allow the duplicate to secure a place in LEO.

The duplicate would then refuel from supplies provided from Earth or from Mars or other less expensive sources.

The duplicate would attach to a waiting, fully fueled Starship, and give the Starship the impulse it needs to travel to Mars.

Meanwhile, the duplicate would reorient itself to perform a recovery burn, and return to LEO for the next assignment.

(th)

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#12 2021-02-09 17:53:56

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,078

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Starship fuel payload is 100 mT and a fully fueled up takes more than 6 payloads to get one ship ready for Mars.

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#13 2021-02-09 22:34:00

Oldfart1939
Member
Registered: 2016-11-26
Posts: 2,221

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

You're essentially suggesting a "kick stage." In the long run, that will probably happen.

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#14 2021-02-10 08:47:36

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

For Oldfart1939 re #13

Thanks for your kind words!

There is a business opportunity waiting for an enterprising organization interested in a nice close-to-Earth situation.  The provision of launch boost services could go hand in hand with fuel supply.  Now that Elon and SpaceX are showing the way, anyone can imagine being able to set up a service to help him (for a fee), as well as other customers who will be coming along.

The key technology that is NOT available is on-orbit refueling.

For SpaceNut ... a topic for On-Orbit Refueling would be timely, if you can think of the appropriate topic for it.

The technical challenges are such that no one on Earth has attempted it so far, although ( I gather ) plenty of people have thought about it.

(th)

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#15 2021-02-10 11:07:40

Oldfart1939
Member
Registered: 2016-11-26
Posts: 2,221

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

My concept for something similar as a kick stage, was sending a stable fuel module to orbit and available for use as needed. About 3 years ago I was thinking about an enlarged Falcon 9 as a potential deep space transport vehicle, and using MMH/NTO fueled deep space stages as modular, on demand boosters. The fascination with Methylox propulsion has eclipsed the use of Hydrazine based systems.

This kick stage would be a complete powered unit, complete with a rocket engine and hydrazine attitude thrusters. Strictly an emergency backup throwaway. 

My biggest concern with the current Starship concept is it may be a bit TOO big. Too big to refuel easily on Mars, and difficult to land in rough, unprepared terrain.

That said, I'm 110% supportive of Elon's efforts. I'm currently envisioning the Starship as an orbital truck, the heavy hauler to LEO. Beyond that, I am still somewhat skeptical about it's deep space usefulness.

Last edited by Oldfart1939 (2021-02-10 15:25:53)

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#16 2021-02-10 19:10:51

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,078

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

tahanson43206 post 14
refueling and fuel depot posts made with topics here

No matter which topic is used the fuels delivered to orbit must be the one's need for the craft that is waiting there...

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#17 2021-03-17 07:24:27

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Apparently there is a book recently published about SpaceX, and how close they came to demise in 2008.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/early-spacex … 25328.html

SpaceX had proved its rockets could get off the planet. Afterward, the company scraped together enough contracts to keep funding flowing.

Dunn stayed at SpaceX for another decade, eventually becoming senior vice president of production and launch. Last year, he left SpaceX to oversee manufacturing at Relativity Space, a startup that hopes to automate the rocket-production process with 3D printing.

The article at the link above describes how Mr. Dunn crawled inside the rocket to let air flow to equalize pressure between the inside and the outside of the oxygen tank as a plane carrying the rocket descended to land.

(th)

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#18 2021-03-23 09:56:20

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/spacex-betti … 27628.html

Business Insider
SpaceX is betting big on its UK Starlink rollout, and is in talks to become part of the government's $6.9 billion 'Project Gigabit' plan for rural internet
Kate Duffy
Tue, March 23, 2021, 7:48 AM

** Now ** we're talking!

(th)

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#19 2021-04-09 19:46:06

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Here is a small item about financial number crunching at SpaceX ...

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/technolo … d=msedgdhp

SpaceX is big on analytics — you have to be when you’re building rockets from scratch — and that’s what led the company to attempt to catch the fairings in the first place. The idea being that catching them would save a lot of money since they could be reused rapidly and wouldn’t risk being damaged by the salty ocean water. It’s likely that the company crunched the numbers and determined that the cost of the ships and the operations to catch the fairings didn’t provide cost savings over just picking them up from the ocean and doing a bit more work to refurbish them.

In any case, SpaceX boss Elon Musk has already confirmed that there will be no more fairing catch attempts and both Ms. Tree and Ms. Chief have been stripped of their SpaceX branding and seemingly sold off.

(th)

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#20 2021-04-10 08:29:05

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,078

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Number crunching of the cost to manufacture - recovery costs = savings to reuse if you do no inspection but thats the cost to make sure its reusable as the shell can become distorted and no longer seal or line up to be reassembled for use.

The real thing about space x is its not unionized to the military's triplicate form process and that saves big money.

Watching SpaceX attempt to catch the components was a lot of fun, and while it was definitely a good idea, it just didn’t pan out. Going forward, SpaceX will still be reusing its nosecones, but they’ll just be a little bit wetter when they make it to port.

Over 50 fairing catches were attempted and less than 10 returned positive results. That’s a disappointing percentage and, with SpaceX seemingly getting better and better at recovering and refurbishing its fairings after they’ve splashed down in the ocean, SpaceX seems to have decided that it wasn’t worth trying to catch them anymore at all.

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#21 2021-05-13 07:06:00

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 7,297

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

Google has gotten into the practice is giving me tips about YouTubes when I log in ...

The suggestions seem to be space oriented, which would be the AI's best guess as to my interests ...

The video below is well done, and might be worth a moment of someone's time ..

The animation of rocket movement during descent is of (possible) interest to those debating the idea of landing on a post.

While the animation is NOT a realistic depiction of real life capability, it ** does ** show what the engineers are thinking about.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IfLEa1nLuzA

(th)

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#22 2021-05-23 07:22:09

Mars_B4_Moon
Member
Registered: 2006-03-23
Posts: 884

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

SpaceX Mars program

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SpaceX_Mars_program

' At the Axel Springer Award 2020 Elon Musk said that he is highly confident that the first crewed flights to Mars will happen in 2026 '

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#23 2021-06-17 06:55:56

NewMarsMember
Member
Registered: 2019-02-17
Posts: 231

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

This post is from GW Johnson, who is still incommunicado on the forum ...

According to today's AIAA's email newsletter "the Daily Launch",  Spacex has gotten itself tied up with an environmental impact statement problem.  As a matter of law,  that environmental impact statement thing has to be resolved,  before (!!!) the FAA can grant a license for Spacex to fly Starship/Superheavy out of Boca Chica.  I saw nothing to prevent further Starship-only flight tests,  but the article explicitly said there was no way Spacex could possibly legally fly the orbital mission in July. 

The article did not say what the environmental concern (or concerns) were,  but I rather suspect that (1) lethal levels of noise more than 3 miles away and (2) a rather large explosion hazard near that of a small nuclear warhead,  are the causes for this ***.  Those two risks are precisely what the offshore launch platform alleviates in full for Spacex,  so it is perfectly clear why they are building such a thing.  Superheavy has a lot more takeoff thrust than Saturn-5 ever did (initially 7.5 million pounds,  later 8.5 million pounds). 

The main reason that the larger-than-Saturn "Nova" rocket was never built was the lethal noise and giant explosion hazard at Cape Canaveral of rockets very much bigger than Saturn-5 (15+ million pounds,  ranging upwards of 25 million pounds).  A 28-engine Superheavy has 56 MN of thrust,  which is something like 12.6 million pounds.  They will need 32 to 37 engines before they are done proving this design out (64 to 74 MN = 14.4 to 16.6 million pounds).  That kind of thrust level is ultimately driven by the T/W=1.5 requirement at liftoff with a 1400-to-1450-metric-ton class upper stage,  to achieve adequate acceleration kinematics.  Those physics are simply inescapable.

In my own opinion,  an early orbital test with Superheavy like the supposed July test may be premature anyway.  The offshore platform is nowhere near ready,  plus neither stage will be recovered,  except as floating derelicts after splashing down (hopefully gently).  They really need the landing leg solutions for both stages,  and they are not the same.  Nor is either landing leg solution the same as that on the Falcon cores. 

Even if they do reach orbit and return per what was the July launch plan,  they do it with a very incomplete (!!!) design.  Bear in mind that one successful flight to orbit demonstrates very little of what is really needed to have a reliable orbital transport,  much less what is necessary take this vehicle to the moon or Mars. Even if they pull this first flight off before year's end,  it is a mistake to read very much into it. 

That is because PR press releases are notorious for overstated lies.  And everybody knows that is true,  even if they won't admit it.

*** Don't go telling me there is no way that a chemical explosion can do the catastrophic damage of a nuke.  I know better!  Even at 1/4-1/3 yield for no fuel oil,  two 10,000 US-ton shiploads of ammonium nitrate did the damage of a ~4-5 KT nuke to Texas City,  Texas,  in 1947.  The same with many other ammonium nitrate explosions from the 19th century onwards,  including the fertilizer at the agriculture business in West,  Texas,  a few years ago.  Only 20-something tons exploded there.  Which is precisely why there still is a town of West,  Texas.  West is only about 30 miles from my home,  as the crow flies.

I suppose the forum guys might like to see this,  most likely in the "Starship is go" thread.  I tried unsuccessfully to submit from my wife's computer today,  now that she has run some anti-malware (that process is not done yet).  I saw the same "bad referrer" problem as before,  even though the other symptoms I saw on her machine have seemingly been corrected.  So,  no further progress,  not yet.

GW

GW Johnson can log in, but he cannot post.

For SpaceNut ... I found a post at FluxBB.org that contained a specific procedure GW Johnson might try to fix the Bad Referrer error.

I send a copy of the post and hope he might be able to try it in the next day or so.

The essence of the post is that there is (apparently) a referrer code that is used for security purposes.  Apparently that code can be changed by software on a person's computer, and if it does NOT have a value of "2" then the error will be generated.

I'll post a copy of the advice in Housekeeping.

(th)


Recruiting High Value members for NewMars.com/forums, in association with the Mars Society

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#24 2021-06-17 08:07:51

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 6,858

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

I've always thought something like this was on the cards. The local environmental impact must be huge.  Apparently Texans have some state constitutional right to access beaches as well.  They've also been pissing off the authorities by having their security people act like police officers, stopping traffic and so on - not acceptable.

Don't discount the possible entry of politics into this. I have long predicted the Biden administration could well move to frustrate the Starship programme and the Mars Mission. Both offend Far Leftists, Woke Greens, rival billionaire globalists and the CCP - so a powerful coalition.

I disagree with GW on one thing: "Bear in mind that one successful flight to orbit demonstrates very little of what is really needed to have a reliable orbital transport," 

That wasn't the Apollo approach. Apollo went from first (uncrewed) orbital flight to lunar landing in just over a year and a half and they went from first crewed orbital flight to lunar landing in 9 months.

So I think a successful first orbital will demonstrate a lot.

Will an ocean launch kill marine life?


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#25 2021-06-17 08:25:55

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 1,154

Re: On the lasting importance of SpaceX.

louis wrote:

Will an ocean launch kill marine life?

Maybe.  The thermal backwash from the rocket probably isn't a big issue, as infrared rapidly attenuates in water.  But the noise and vibration at take off are extreme and sound transmission is more damaging in water, because it is incompressible.  Expect a lot of dead fish within a mile of the launch site.


Interested in space science, engineering and technology.

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