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About DDE

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  • Location Moscow, Russia
  • Interests Anything that doesn't have to do with my actual career

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  1. Recovering upper stages - in orbit?

    For a small, dense package, as opposed to a massive rocket stage, the difference is much more miniscule, and you get to pick an arbitrary LZ.
  2. Likely not without compromising their ability to take care of themselves, similar to how people with no sense of pain keep injuring themselves until they die of sepsis.
  3. Recovering upper stages - in orbit?

    At which point the question is, why don't themselves do it themselves, Vulcan-style?
  4. Manned Mars mission poll

    It might work for a tiny, landlocked country; not for a thassalocracy like the United States. If the US gives up its 11-carrier fleet, its global network of military bases, and the force projection capability both of these afford, it would be effectively finished as a global power in general and a global economic power in particular. The United States CANNOT AFFORD being on a defensive footing; in order to retain its current standing, it must be able to conventionally annihilate anyone, anywhere and at any time. Hence the fascination with Prompt Global Strike and Hot Eagle, hence the - possibly misplaced - emphasis on carriers, hence the countless military bases encircling every even remotely potential adversary.
  5. Recovering upper stages - in orbit?

    It's a rather dubious plan. You're simply delegating the need for reusability to an even larger spacecraft, which will be transporting mostly vacuum. It's probably less efficient than the failure that the Space Shuttle was.
  6. Manned Mars mission poll

    Musk wants to borrow the VAB now, has reduced the diameter from 12 m to 9 m and may be reviewing the Mars landing mode. It remains to be shown that this sort of spending is any more worthwhile. Nor does reducing military spending lead to a reduction in objective military threats. Military spending is subject to the Prisoner Dilemma: lower it, miss out on the latest toys, and you end up exposed for decades to people from whom you should expect no mercy.
  7. Manned Mars mission poll

    With the likely caveat that the consumers have to be spaceborne. Thus, there's only one way to jumpstart space settlement:
  8. I arrived to a similar conclusion, actually. Heck, the Baltic fleet's long-range reconnaissance teams during WWII (i.e. guys who spent months at a time camping out in wind-blasted, pedant-ridden mountains to report on steel and tungsten shipments out of Kirkenes) recruited people who were either Norwegian or submariner.

    And they further wreck the ascent TWR with those skewed nozzles - I still recall that thesis on supersonic retro someone posted.
  10. https://ntrs.nasa.gov/search.jsp?R=20140008733 Props to @nyrath, as always. TL;DR 'Afterbuner' design with hydrogen injection into the exhaust of a dusty plasma reactor results in Isp=32000 sec, allowing for a single-stage trip from Earth to Mars orbit and back, hence a high degree of reusability.
  11. @kerbiloid, these things are REALLY heavy.
  12. Manned Mars mission poll

    Yes, because NASA literally discards every bit of equipment after one year and totally doesn't have absurd fixed, non-material or mothballed assets, right?
  13. Manned Mars mission poll

    @NSEP, it's funny how the guy directly quotes Zubrin in the "Alpha Centauri by 2000" rant. Reveals certain sympathies.
  14. Manned Mars mission poll

    I think it's because non-kerbonauts have little to no idea of the magnitude of the challenges involved. The average normie's understanding of spaceflight is informed by Star Wars and Star Trek, not Apollo 13; their view on space policy is informed by usually misunderstood opportunities and not realistic possibilities. Actual space cadets are forced to learn to consider the costs and sacrifices.
  15. I think SpaceShipOne had such a design... and they immediately ran into cooling issues.