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Skylon
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31 minutes ago, cubinator said:

Which rocket is that? The one from the first successful recovery? And this is just sitting on the street corner like it thinks it can pass for a lamp post or something?

Yes, it is the the one from the first successful recovery. It's displayed at the SpaceX headquarters.

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On 4/20/2018 at 9:04 AM, Teilnehmer said:

I meant not retracting but expanding the wings.

I'm confused. Are we talking about DreamChaser or some hypthetical F-111/Space Shuttle mashup ?

Cargo DreamChaser has foldable stabilizers so that it can fit inside a fairing (It actually stole the idea from the Russian Spiral). It needs to be in a fairing because it carries unpressurized cargo palettes on the outside. After the fairing is jettisoned, the stabilizers unfold. There is no reason for them to ever fold back during flight, so it probably uses some sort of reliable one-way spring and latch mechanism (like most other space-deployable solar panels, antennas, and landing gear).

Crew DreamChaser, if it ever flies, will have fixed stabilizers, because it doesn't launch inside a fairing. It doesn't have a fairing because it needs to be able to abort surely and rapidly, so you want to minimize any unnecessary jettison and unfolding events that only introduce extra points of failure.

Edited by Nibb31
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You could probably map that, but I doubt you'll learn anything from that.
AFAIK Launch windows have to do with the intended final orbit and are simply calculated backwards for minimum fuel requirements.

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4 hours ago, Skylon said:

Is there a graph/chart anywhere of the day and time at which launches have taken place during the week? It would be interesting to see if there is any pattern at all.

 

1 hour ago, Kr0noZ said:

You could probably map that, but I doubt you'll learn anything from that.

I guess you'd just end up with mostly dawn/dusk.

Vandenberg has a functional civilian railway only 1 mile away from the pads, within the airbase area - they are empty during dawn/dusk. Launches from Cape Canaveral/Kennedy is slightly more free but as I haven't watched any launches during midday from here (12 hrs away from yours), I presume they don't launch mid-night. Unless there's a secret thing going on...

Edited by YNM
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27 minutes ago, YNM said:

Launches from Cape Canaveral/Kennedy is slightly more free but as I haven't watched any launches during midday from here (12 hrs away from yours), I presume they don't launch mid-night. Unless there's a secret thing going on...

Most of the night/early morning launches I can think of have been interplanetary satellites.

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1 hour ago, cubinator said:

Most of the night/early morning launches I can think of have been interplanetary satellites.

Yeah, that makes sense for escaping Earth.

GEO launches don't require a specific time; polar mapping orbits would do with dusk/dawn.

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Just now, cubinator said:

Those wouldn't require a specific time either, as your orbit would pass over different parts of Earth as it rotates anyway.

You want the resulting photographs to have relatively consistent sun angle. Also, doing them at the Earth's terminator means it can work 24/7 instead of a half of that.

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19 minutes ago, cubinator said:

Those wouldn't require a specific time either, as your orbit would pass over different parts of Earth as it rotates anyway.

If you launch at dusk/dawn into a polar orbit, you are launching in a sun-synchronous orbit, meaning the sun is shining at the satellite constantly for a few months at a time, so the solar panels can operate constantly.

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3 hours ago, cubinator said:

Most of the night/early morning launches I can think of have been interplanetary satellites.

Assuming that interplanetary mission want to get into the earth sun orbital plane. It would make sense to launch at night during the winter and in the middle of the day in the summer.

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4 minutes ago, Nefrums said:

It would make sense to launch at night during the winter and in the middle of the day in the summer.

Why should that vary ?

 

All KSP has taught me is that if you want to launch to Duna, you launch at dusk/night ; if you want to launch to Eve you launch at dawn/morning/midday.

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