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    IRL Aero Engineer

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  1. Nuclear bonds are simply vastly more energy-dense than chemical bonds. Project Orion was not proposed because exploding bombs behind your ship is a great way to provide thrust. It was proposed because nuclear power is necessary to get anywhere beyond maybe Mars or Venus. A "non-nuclear Orion" misses the ENTIRE point. Besides, fuel/air bombs work because the bomb only supplies the fuel. The oxygen is already there. That is not the situation in space.
  2. Most nuclear power plants use rivers for their heat sink. Either that or the ocean or a large lake.
  3. Drake is a lot more than his Hammer books. The Hammer series was pretty obviously his attempt to work through his experiences in the Vietnam War. But he also writes a lot of other things.
  4. Maybe, but probably not. Here's a very famous simple liquid fuel rocket: This is basically what you are talking about.
  5. You need to control how much fuel you pump in. You need to control how much oxidizer you pump in. You need to mix them. You need to burn them VERY QUICKLY. You also need to extract some power from the combustion in order to run the pumps. And you need to keep all the parts cool enough so that they will survive long enough for you to burn all that fuel. AND you need to do this as efficiently as possible in order to make the best use of your propellant. And you need it to be as light as possible. And you need it to be as cheap as possible. But also as reliable as possible. Whether you use hydraulic power or electrical power to control all your valves, you also need plumbing and wiring for that. You probably also need a hydraulic pump and an electrical generator.
  6. I find it depressing how many people play a game like KSP and instantly want to add weapons. It would be so nice if we didn't have to militarize everything. (And I say that despite working for the world's biggest defense contractor.) I do read military science fiction, though. I happen to like David Drake a lot.
  7. Well, the launch happened. Currently in second stage burn. Back to killing aliens, I guess.
  8. "L-34min" The announcers are explaining that they are both vaccinated and outside, so that's why they are not wearing masks.
  9. As predicted, I am awake, and playing video games. Looks like the stream is now scheduled to start at 2am (my time). Probably won't watch.
  10. And SpaceX says they are going to be flying 1000 people p2p around the world for the same price as an airline ticket. Airbus had a video about how they were going to make transparent airplanes so you would have a great view as you fly. People say a lot of crazy stuff in these videos.
  11. Yeah, I hope so. I'm not rooting against them. I'm just saying "don't count your chickens until they hatch".
  12. LOL at this: https://waterfordwhispersnews.com/2021/10/14/shatner-sent-to-work-in-amazon-factory-until-he-pays-back-cost-of-space-flight/ Starship has NEVER FLOWN TO SPACE, and yet you are just assuming they are going to have this super-high flight cadence. I mean, they might. But they might not. The shuttle was supposed to be able to fly 100 times a year or whatever too. NG only exists on paper right now (or possibly as some parts in a factory), so I will definitely give Starship a higher chance of success then NG. But if you judge them by the same standard, then you really can't just assume Starship is going to work any more than you can just assume NG is going to work.
  13. Live in 11 hours? 1am? I probably won't be asleep at 1am on a Friday night, but I'll probably be too busy playing a videogame or something to watch a rocket launch.
  14. https://www.theonion.com/william-shatner-90-becomes-oldest-person-to-travel-to-1847865251
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