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  1. I was able to pull together a basic B-2 clone that didn't use any reaction wheels and relied on split aileron differential drag for yaw control, but I had to use a KAL for it so it responds to manual input only.
  2. Do they, tho? I was under the impression that, while e.g. the "Big-S" wing parts indeed have variable thickness, they're still symmetric and thus have zero camber (and thus work equally well even if placed upside down). Let me do a quick test and see. Yep. Those rear wings are rotated 180 degrees and they have the exact same positive or negative lift as the front ones all the way.
  3. Why are you doing all these random estimates and guesstimates when Elon has already said how much an expendable Starship would mass? 40 tonnes dry, 1200 kg of propellants. As an SSTO, though, you'd need to add six more engines, so tack on 10 tonnes more. So 50 tonnes dry. ~16 vs ~4 is a totally different question than anything related to SSTO applications, so that's immaterial.
  4. I think MOAR BOOSTERS are needed. Specifically on the near side of the vehicle.
  5. Now, if you could mount the boosters on either side of the orbiter and send it up in parallel launch style, that could work.
  6. Yeah, and even weirder he conceptualized launching it on a pair of Falcon 9s: Putting in SuperDracos for aux is nice and all but it's not like they're going to be a meaningful contributor during abort. Eight SuperDracos together produce only a quarter the thrust of a single sea level Raptor 2. Could be useful for moon landings though.
  7. That's how most of the flying wings I've built in KSP fly, but in real life you have to be able to have full control in an engine-out scenario, which is where you run into problems. A more workable solution is differential drag via split ailerons. Rather than just having a single aileron control surface at the tip of each wing, you have two overlapping ones, and so you can either deflect them up or down in a pair (to control roll) or you can deflect them in opposite directions to induce drag. By making the tip of one wing more draggy than the other, you turn the plane toward that wing in the yaw axis.
  8. I beg to differ. Flying Wing Starboost88 Beautiful! Of course I mean in real life. But yes. I'm trying to think whether there is any better orientation to come up with in terms of engines than the one in the NASA study. Excited to see what you come up with!
  9. Unrelated to the launch, I'm surprised I never saw this anywhere on this thread. It's a cool concept from a couple of years ago. Full concept art gallery is here.
  10. So not only magic Isp but magic engines. Because either those engines rotate or are duplicated and still don't overdo the mass issues of SSTO. And of course all those SF vehicles somehow don't abuse the landing pad (Kirk landed his Klingon Bird of Prey in a 20th century park, Stormtroopers stood nearby the Millennium Falcon when we first saw it take off) even with a TWR>>1. On the other hand, Arthur C. Clarke was right about the definition of "magic" and such things might well be possible well before the 2200s. Oh yes, magic indeed. Of course, the slower the exhaust is moving, the less dangerous it is to be in the vicinity. And fortunately the ground has a bunch of thick air around it which tends to be useful for such things. I've always wanted to come up with a realizable way that you could have air intakes with extremely high bypass in one direction and progressively lower bypass in the other direction so that you wouldn't need variable geometry for an airbreather. Just rotate the nacelle based on speed and altitude.
  11. Oh, that's very cool! One of the specifics about the bi-directional flying wing idea is that it's supposed to NOT be symmetric in different flight modes. But yeah, very nice job.
  12. Looks like they used an Einstein doll for the zero-g indicator. And nose cone deployment started! All systems go.
  13. Entry burn start. Nice pretty Eye of Sauron. I love seeing that hard-over body lift turn into the wind at the end of the entry burn. SECO -- we have Endurance in orbit! Landing burn, and down! Very shaky coming in, though. And a nice clean separation from the second stage. Endurance is flying free.
  14. Very cool shot -- the camera on the booster picked up the sight of the thrust plume from its own ascent rising off the coast.
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