sojourner

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About sojourner

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  1. Those are the new titanium grid fins.
  2. The customers don't care about the fate of the first stage once the second stage has separated.
  3. I could see a development of the "roomba" used on the barges as a landing pad that "centers" itself on the incoming ITS booster. It would obviously have to be much bigger than the current roomba and you would have to be careful to avoid a feedback loop of the roomba trying to center and the booster also trying to center, but it makes sense to work it out for that last few feet of landing. The key there would be to have the booster ignore the roomba and focus on a fixed landing point while the roomba is focused on lining up with the hardpoints on the booster to grab it.
  4. Dragon 1 berths, not docked. Someone would have to remain onboard the ISS to unberth it.
  5. Maybe by "reuse" he really meant "land".
  6. That's getting easier as SpaceX is ramping up to a launch every two weeks. It'll be even more frequent once they get both pads back in operation this fall.
  7. LOL. Titan may not be economical to mine for use on Earth, but in some far flung future it will be the economic power house of the Saturn system.
  8. I believe that's the old strongback and probably no longer works for FH. Regardless, SpaceX has already said that debut launch of FH will be from LC-39a and that updating the pad is the long pole now on when it will launch.
  9. Nope, they have to do some final work to make LC-39a compatible with FH and they can't afford the downtime until they get SLC-40 back in operation.
  10. Which is not orbital velocity and would not need a heatshield. As demonstrated by Falcon first stage.
  11. From my original post: If the vehicle gets compromised for use on re-entry you're pretty much stuck where every other vehicle would be if it's heatshield has been compromised: having to do a crew transfer on orbit to another vehicle. Unless of course this monstrosity of a system has enough payload mass to allow for the crew pod to have it's own secondary heatshield. But that's really starting to cut into the mass of the vehicle for scenario that has only occurred once in the history of manned space flight.
  12. Not true. Falcon 9 first stage does just fine without a heat shield. A heat shield is only really necessary if you need to shed orbital velocity. pad abort would be the tricky part with a side ejecting pod. Low altitude shouldn't be a problem. Depending on what you mean by "low". The abort motor system would have to be designed to take the pod laterally at first to clear the rocket and then curve into a vertical climb to give it enough altitude to deploy chutes.
  13. Build a secondstage/spacecraft with a bi-conic profile. give it cargo bay doors similar to shuttle. Send crew up as cargo in a pod in the bay. Launch abort sideways after blowing the doors. Or go a step further for crew mission and remove the doors and have the crew pod fit in flush (this would also allow for much easier access to a docking port for in space transfers_. Separate everything needed by the crew from the vehicle to the pod. If the vehicle gets compromised for use on re-entry you're pretty much stuck where every other vehicle would be if it's heatshield has been compromised: having to do a crew transfer on orbit to another vehicle. Unless of course this monstrosity of a system has enough payload mass to allow for the crew pod to have it's own secondary heatshield. But that's really starting to cut into the mass of the vehicle for scenario that has only occurred once in the history of manned space flight.
  14. The G's pulled by a launch abort system would trash pretty much any satellite you tried to save with it. Designing satellites tough enough to survive a launch abort would be prohibitive in mass usage. Most of the mass of the satellite would be taken up for a scenario that would be only seconds of it's planned life. It's cost prohibitive. This is why payload customers are perfectly fine with holds and scrubs for the least little variable out of range. Better to wait a day and fix that out of range sensor than take a chance with a multi-million dollar payload.