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About Lukaszenko

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    Spacecraft Engineer
  1. Undoubtedly. But there's no way in hell that's the full story. My point is that it works on a closed-loop feedback control. It moves the grid fins, checks how the rocket reacts, and then moves them some more until the rocket reacts the way that it should. Okay, so it's a bit obvious now that I said it, but it's just something I never thought about
  2. Interesting. I thought that the computer would know more or less how the rocket will react when it tilts and twists the grid fins. But, here it looks like they just came in and slapped on some bigger & curvier fins and they still expect the rocket to return no problem. I guess it implies that the computer basically learns how to control the rocket on the fly. It makes sense; so many variables are always changing. I wonder if, for example, half a grid fin got ripped off, would the computer be able to adjust for it?
  3. Seems not everybody knows about this link.
  4. That's cool. I guess a whole new market IS opening up
  5. I didn't see anybody say anything about this, but it seemed really clear in this launch:
  6. So yeah, smack in the middle of my party, I just switched the TV to SpaceX launch and turned off the music. I was a bit made fun of, but in the end it was a big hit. I don't care whotf you are, it's an interesting thing to watch. Funnily, after the first stage landed, I turned it off and switched back the music. I guess the fun part was over
  7. Dammit, next launch is smack in the middle of my party time. I can postpone work or sleep, but Saturday evening? Maybe I'll just host a launch party....
  8. Didn't they they find a perfect, low-tech solution in the 80s?
  9. After watching for an hour, I'm starting to suspect that the fairing GIF doesn't lead up to its eventual landing
  10. Did anybody else see this article? Apparently they want to build many An-225s and use them as launch vehicles. Kind of cool. I guess. But, did they get their math REALLY wrong? "90% of the energy of the launch vehicle is spent getting up to an altitude of 10km"? Even my friend who knows NOTHING about spaceflight was dubious about this, if for no other reason than that satellites fly MUCH higher than 10 km (disregarding any sideways velocity). He's actually the one that asked about this. Anyway, it's not him that's going to throw down billions to make this happen, so he didn't really care that much. And what? They wanted to use the An-225 to launch a fully loaded Buran & Energia from this plane's back? Eh? I know it can lift a lot, but 2.5 million kg is a bit more than a lot. Anyway, normally I wouldn't care about stuff like this, but this is a legitimate article about a legitimate thing from a legitimate source. Really made me go like this
  11. Holy.... If I was watching a movie, I would have said it was fake
  12. I don't think it's that simple. Reentry vehicles are especially shaped to push the hot plasma away and create a cooler boundary layer between the vehicle and the hot gas. And even then, they use special materials and various tricks to withstand the extreme heat. A grid fin, at first glance, is a smack in the face to this design concept. You're basically asking it to go directly through the hot plasma, and even adding extra surface area for it to impinge upon. I'm confident that using everyday materials such as titanium as a heat shield would be catastrophic. I'm also confident that a grid-fin out of purpose-made reentry material (if even possible) would fail. A titanium grid fin though? There would be no chance.
  13. I'm guessing that making the 2nd stage reusable can't be worse (payload wise), but probably even much better than attaching a Dragon 2 to it, since a Dragon 2 already has all the things necessary for reusability. If my math is correct, you would then be left with a ~10,000 kg payload. Not that bad, really. It's what the original Falcon 9's payload was, except now all the hardware is reusable.
  14. But they didn't, and that makes all the difference. Even the difference between *almost* to orbit and TO orbit is a world of difference, because one stays up and the other doesn't. And on the same note, you could also just slap 3 Falcon 9s together and have a Falcon Heavy. And yet somehow it's not there, despite being worked on for the better part of a decade. Turns out that in aerospace, seemingly simple things have a way of not being so.
  15. That's like saying it's not the gun that does the killing, it's the bullet. The point is, they're part of a system designed for a specific goal, and one is useless without the other.