Vanamonde

Blue Origin thread. (New, replacing lost thread.)

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That's note a quote of me, its a quote of Bezos.

That said, space is not expensive because it has to carry random civilians, since so far it has not done that.

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2 hours ago, tater said:

That's note a quote of me, its a quote of Bezos.

That said, space is not expensive because it has to carry random civilians, since so far it has not done that.

I'm not sure what the cost basis the US military uses to risk its soldiers in combat, but it is far less than the insured cost of a commercial satellite (well, officially.  The DoD has done some amazing things in reducing casualties far below what you would see if you used the official number).  "Crew rated" issues are largely due to personal nature that NASA and employees/contractors/US citizens feel about losing astronauts and the PR hit it entails.

Most of the "cost to space" centers around the fact that it is high R&D, low volume.  From the numbers I've seen thrown around, if ULA had their boosters magically returned and Spacex had to expend all their rockets, spacex would still be vastly cheaper.  Much of this is thanks to DoD procurement rules (if you've never been on the inside, just expect that you make a standard profit re-selling things with a 10x markup.  No kidding, the red tape eats the rest of the profit, but at least much of the money goes to pay employees in make-work stuff), the rest is a completely different attitude in vertical integration and cutting costs (and Musk convincing his employees to work cheap to be part of something so awesome).  The last is important: spacex has only launched 1 or 2 reused boosters, but undercut competition on 20+ flights.  Making a profit is easy when you don't have to pay the overtime he gets.

I'm sure spacex could make a "daily rocket" for 10% or less cost/flight of the Falcon (it wouldn't be a falcon, but something much cheaper to launch).  But I doubt even Musk is willing to design the thing until he at least sees the market for a daily launch.

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Daily launches? What would you be launching at that rate? Probably not anything terribly fragile, so a railgun with a rocket circularization stage would probably suffice for that market of rapid launch rate, not a rocket.

That said, New Shepard was designed with a 24 hour turnaround schedule in mind. They haven't demonstrated that with the first one, but that was probably due to it being more of a development vehicle than a production vehicle. I wouldn't be surprised if the first stage of New Glenn was able to operate on a 2-week turnaround schedule, which would be quite rapid.

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F9 is aiming for 24 hours, and people constantly mistake that for the idea they'd actually reply at that rate---better would be man-hours to refurb. SX wants to be able to have a team of X people refurb a booster in 24 hours---even if it doesn't fly for 6 months. It's about cost, nothing more.

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4 hours ago, MaverickSawyer said:

Daily launches? What would you be launching at that rate?

Mass tourism. Otherwise a space hotel will stay an overexpensive toy for several overrich people.

And this also requires absolutely another level of reliability,

Say, artists, writers, dancers, etc, could find the orbital cafe and dancing room inspiring.
But they mostly are neither billionaires, nor desperate spacemarines.

Edited by kerbiloid

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3 hours ago, tater said:

F9 is aiming for 24 hours, and people constantly mistake that for the idea they'd actually reply at that rate---better would be man-hours to refurb. SX wants to be able to have a team of X people refurb a booster in 24 hours---even if it doesn't fly for 6 months. It's about cost, nothing more.

Okay, that I can see as reasonable. Full turnaround of a week or so, to account for rolling to the pad, a static fire, rolling back to the integration building, payload integration, roll back out to the pad, and launching... that's a fairly reasonable operational tempo, IMO.

 

19 minutes ago, kerbiloid said:

Mass tourism. Otherwise a space hotel will stay an overexpensive toy for several overrich people.

And this also requires absolutely another level of reliability,

Say, artists, writers, dancers, etc, could find the orbital cafe and dancing room inspiring.
But they mostly are neither billionaires, nor desperate spacemarines.

Or, do fewer launches with bigger vehicles. How big of a capsule could you hoist with a Falcon Heavy in reusability mode, or with a New Glenn?

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The FAA have just approved a launch licence for the NS system, allowing commercial flight of 'active and passive payloads'. 

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Same as before, they dumped the tapered down fairing.

 

45 MT to LEO, too, so a B330 fits in there with room/mass to spare.

Edited by tater

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3 hours ago, rudi1291 said:

Didn't now they had a 3 stage version planned... I guess thats for GTO?

Pretty sure so, having an lightweight 3rd stage helps a lot for GTO, that is why Ariadne 5 has an so high GTO faction to GTO over falcon 9.
I would put 3rd stage entire inside the fairing or interstage to save weight. 

Is the upper stage very small compared to falcon 9? 
With so high cargo capacity upper stage recovery becomes practical. 



 

 

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Yeah, I thought it was an interesting little article. Myself, I happen to agree with Bezos regarding where humans should live in space (assuming there is ever a need/desire for that).

Interesting times... (and I'm really happy that I can say that, my space interest had truly been beaten out of me until SpaceX and BO came along)

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Quote

New Glenn will be built at a factory outside the gates of the Kennedy Space Center in Florida that is nearly complete, Meyerson said. “In early December — the first week of December — we’ll be moving our folks in and starting the integration on the first New Glenn vehicle.”

Sooner than I expected! :) 

http://spacenews.com/blue-origin-signs-up-third-customer-for-new-glenn/

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Well, it’s good to know the ridiculous amount of money I spend on Amazon buying crap is at least going to good use. :D

Pity their test facility is down in Texas when their factory is up here. Not like they’d let me in, anyway, but still...

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1 hour ago, CatastrophicFailure said:

Well, it’s good to know the ridiculous amount of money I spend on Amazon buying crap is at least going to good use. :D

Pity their test facility is down in Texas when their factory is up here. Not like they’d let me in, anyway, but still...

I know people who work there. What are your skills? They do hire people.

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