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Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Mon Mar 23, 2015 4:30 pm
by swamijake
If your libido is bouncing into space you might have a problem. I think you mean albedo.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Mon Mar 23, 2015 7:17 pm
by GIThruster
Okay yeah, this is a very cool idea. Combine this with the right target though. Mars isn't the place. Jupiter's moons Ganymede and Europa are both supposed to have water beneath, that could house life. One imagines this could cut miles though ice and look for water to dump a submarine drone into:

http://nextbigfuture.com/2015/03/techni ... lasma.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plasma_dee ... technology

Plasma furnaces are probably the most efficient way to refine space ores, and spark plasma sintering is a great way to turn many ceramics into useful materials, so plasma tech has more than this one use above.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Wed Mar 25, 2015 6:33 pm
by GIThruster
Musk weighs in on flying cars. Note that M-E cars avoid all his concerns:

http://www.roadandtrack.com/car-culture ... your-head/

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Wed Mar 25, 2015 6:41 pm
by raelik
GIThruster wrote:Note that M-E cars avoid all his concerns:


Well, almost all of them. A complete loss of power would still make your M-E car fall from the sky. A good design would have emergency thrusters backed by enough batteries to get you down safely in a power loss scenario.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Wed Mar 25, 2015 6:56 pm
by kunkmiester
METs would be in redundant arrays to the point serious losses would be needed to cause loss of lift. Power supplies would be similar, lots of small ones spread around so even a catastrophic crash would have trouble killing everything.

Makes me ponder, we've talked about the centrifugal generators with thrusters on flywheels. Would METs be conducive to a solid state design?

Would a generator be possible that could provide other proofs? Say, instead of putting a thruster on a balance, and trying to measure miniscule thrusts, you build a generator and see if you can get measurable current. Would the signal be any clearer?

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Wed Mar 25, 2015 8:02 pm
by krenshala
I think that would be harder, at least at lower thrust levels, as you'd have to account for power added, used, lost and gained through a number of different mechanisms. The design of the generator would determine how easy (or hard) each of those would be.

With a thrust balance, you measure the force generated before, during and after power is being applied to the thruster. To me this is at least a little bit simpler, though, as GIThruster has repeated stated, still not easy.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Wed Mar 25, 2015 8:32 pm
by 93143
Yeah, at least with a flywheel design it takes significant thrust efficiency to get net power, because the relative speed of the thruster with respect to the generating equipment it's reacting against has to be high enough that Fยทv (minus losses) exceeds the thruster's input power. I can't imagine how a solid-state design could avoid this fundamental requirement, and I don't see it becoming vastly easier to meet. And if you don't have net power you don't have a demo. Thrust is probably a better metric to shoot for first.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 11:29 pm
by GIThruster
ULA's days numbered?

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2015/03/26/ ... bsidy-ula/

Those Atlas V's cost $400M@ and although they're talking about building a new, reusable system, they should have done this 10 years ago or at least 5. End of subsidy may mean the end of their monopoly and ULA should be broken up at this point.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 12:49 am
by 93143
GIThruster wrote:Those Atlas V's cost $400M

No they don't.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:41 am
by paperburn1
I understand that the air force got reprimanded by the pentagon for the review process used on spaceX.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 2:02 pm
by GIThruster
93143 wrote:
GIThruster wrote:Those Atlas V's cost $400M

No they don't.

Pretty sure that's what they charged DoD for the last contract, plus a heady subsidy. Do you recall the numbers? Ended up something like $19B for 22 launches or some such? It was way more than the $160-200M figure they've been floating around. I think the $400M figure is pretty conservative when you look at what DoD is actually spending.

What were the figures for that contract SpaceX objected to as they were not able to compete? That's the real cost, unless there are other, hidden costs like subsidies that need to be added to it.

From 2011 to 2015, DoD paid $15B for 8 launches per year, or about $330M/launch, plus the subsidy, so $400M/launch is pretty close.

http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=128409

http://cagw.org/media/wastewatcher/gao- ... ract-plans

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Sat Mar 28, 2015 8:45 pm
by TDPerk
paperburn1 wrote:I understand that the air force got reprimanded by the pentagon for the review process used on spaceX.


Of course, the perfumed princes in the inner ring need to have cozy chairs in boardrooms to eject into when they leave the service. SpaceX has destroyed the cost-plus business model, and SpaceX doesn't need old brass.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Sat Mar 28, 2015 8:48 pm
by TDPerk
GIThruster wrote:From 2011 to 2015, DoD paid $15B for 8 launches per year, or about $330M/launch, plus the subsidy, so $400M/launch is pretty close.


I was dying to mention like facts but couldn't get the logon to work from my phone. For the next block buy of launches, if the subsidy is maintained, ULA will be paid $459 million per launch.

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Mon Mar 30, 2015 2:28 am
by 93143
The block buy already covers the capability contract (the subsidy) for more launches than are supplied by the 36-core procurement.

Besides, you're forgetting a couple of things - first, we were talking about Atlas*, and Delta is more expensive; second, ULA has other customers, who pay the lower prices (NASA, for instance). Third, a non-negligible portion of the funding covers DoD/NRO-specific requirements rather than costs inherent to the LV - SpaceX has already bumped their launch price by 50% for this very reason, and at least one EELV payload expert thinks it will get worse.

* After a double-take... yeah, those aren't Atlas cores. One engine bell, AJR logo... never mind that the caption specifically states that they're for the EFT-1 DIVH...

Re: SpaceX News

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2015 10:34 pm
by krenshala
For those not otherwise keeping track, the SpaceX CRS-6 launch is currently scheduled for 1633 eastern time on Monday, 13 April. They will be trying the barge landing again. The Universe Today article about it.