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Burt Rutan

Posted by: spaceboy - Wed Jul 16, 2003 7:50 pm
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Burt Rutan 
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Post    Posted on: Mon Aug 11, 2003 11:26 pm
Well, as long as we're speculating....

Scaled Composites -- 50%
Armadillo Aerospace -- 20%
Da Vinci Project -- 10%
Starchaser -- 9%
Canadian Arrow -- 8%
Somebody Else -- 3%

Scaled has a good lead, but only one aircraft. Although they have funding, I think a crash would require a long lead-time to build a replacement. I have full faith in Burt, but he's subcontracted his rocket...look for possible problems there...it'll be fired at altitudes not available during test.

Armadillo has funding also, and already expect to loose a vehicle during testing. The time to build a replacement would be faster than any of the other teams.

Davinci is less complicated than the remaining front runners...so less chance of gremlins; though I think weather will be the big problem for them.

Starchaser has a good multi-vehicle approach, and can probably handle malfunctions better than others...though they'll probably run out of time.

Canadian Arrow looks good, but things always look good until your first problem. How will they handle that? How long would it take them to build a replacement vehicle?


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Post    Posted on: Tue Aug 12, 2003 5:02 pm
skybum wrote:
In the "Somebody Else" category, I would include the teams that we don't often hear from. Some of them are *much* more serious than anyone suspects. But I still think that Burt has an almost overwhelming lead.

As for somebody else category:
ArcaSpace , Pablo de Leon . Both have tested real hardware at relatively large scale.
Bristol is reported to be very serious too by some people, but i havent seen any public info on their progress. Plus, i think all kinds of single-stage "spaceplane" concepts are too far-fetched anyways at this time and age.

Edit: One more, Interorbital systems, high profile people, have apparently tested some hardware, were scheduling a subscale test launch for this august ( but cancelled due to notice by X-Prize board, they were using government-developed engines )


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Post    Posted on: Tue Aug 12, 2003 5:42 pm
Somewhat off topic.... but are any of the competing teams publicly traded companies? In the US or abroad?

anyone know?

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Post    Posted on: Tue Aug 12, 2003 6:12 pm
One of Rutan's subcontractors, SpaceDev, which is building the hybrid engine, is a publicly traded company. Check out Yahoo Finance: SPDV.

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Post    Posted on: Fri Aug 22, 2003 8:09 am
Another 10 points for Scaled Composites, LLC.

Mojave, California (BNS) - In the race to demonstrate that non-government, commercial manned space flight is feasible at minimum cost Scaled Composites, LLC announced recently the unveiling of its commercial manned space program.

Source: http://www.barutiwa.com/cgi-bin/bns/pub ... _136.shtml

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Post Wow!   Posted on: Fri Aug 22, 2003 5:52 pm
Some absolutely stunning pictures (click here) were just posted to the Scaled Composites web site, including this one:

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"SpaceShipOne flying at sunset"


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Post neck and neck   Posted on: Thu Aug 28, 2003 6:05 pm
:idea: It's too bad that the competition doesn't have a set date of completion. It doesn't seen like the event can run neck and neck


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Post Burt Rutan has got it right   Posted on: Thu Sep 04, 2003 4:21 pm
After reading the article noted by The Legionnaire, http://www.airventure.org/2003/sunaug3/ ... ipone.html, I've come to the conclusion that Burt has got it right.

Rutan said they have a different philosophy about regulatory agencies trying to make them safe. “We tell them, ‘No, we will not do that.’ Our people must always question if it is safe or not and look for better ways to make it safe. When regulators come in to help you, it puts you in a position where you have to defend safety of your product. Then safety goes out the window.”

It is all about safety. That's something about which, the regulators know very little. Go Burt Go!


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Post    Posted on: Fri Sep 05, 2003 1:39 am
Burt is going to win the race!


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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2003 2:38 am
First of all i would like to say that the X-prize is probably in my top ten of coolest events in space travel, it will ultimately lead to the creation of the space tourism industry, but only for the rich abled men and women of this world. However this is better then nothing, hopefully if the teams develop better technologies, and lower their costs maybe oneday the average person will be able to go into space, giving able inspiration for us all.

Secondly i believe that Scaled composites is going to win, and i love thier vechicle concept and design. NASA was going to make somthing like it almost 35 years ago but they never came close ( the closest being the x-33 and 38,and of course the relatively "cheap" shuttle at 1/2 a billion $ a launch). The only thing i dont like about them are their intentions. On thier website i kind of get the feeling that they will not let civilians travel in spaceshipone, they mention that the task of space tourism for civilians will be left up to other companies to achieve (quote: How much will it cost to get a ride into space? ->Rides will not be offered in SpaceShipOne) . They do suggest however that the primary aim of thier project is to investigate the fesability of a commercial human space program. This is sadding in way because they might just take the prize, win the title of first human non-goverment funded spaceflight and just leave it a that. My best bet regarding this case is that scaled is simply keeping its mouth shut and not boasting about what they "may" be able to do in the near future as compared to doing the now so to speak. However i am hoping that they will make other projects, like perhaps the first non-goverment funded ORBITAL spaceflight- that would own.

-Just Imagine if a company like Scaled composites or another competing x-prize team could ferry Astronauts for NASA to the International Space Station or a station of thier own...

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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2003 9:01 pm
Starchaser Industries have the stated aim of making space tourism accessible to everybody. Their intention is that space trips will be offered as soon as possible, as cheaply as possible and will in the future be comparable to a top notch cruise or a flight on concorde - i.e. not quite easyjet, but within the reach of many many people. here's cheering Starchaser!


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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2003 10:59 pm
There's a good interview of Mr. Rutan on the Air & Space mag' website. I seem to recall that he said somewhere that he wasn't interested in developing a space-tourism venture, but I got the feeling that it was purely a question of what motivates him, as an individual. I can totally understand how someone who is so challenge-driven would be tepid about running a fairly mundane tourist agency. He says that "by then, he'll be doing something more interesting".

JD


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Post Xprize   Posted on: Thu Sep 11, 2003 5:52 am
Hi, I'm new...

This is sooo cool, Rutan looks to have it nailed but...I was wandering around the googlesphere lookin at all things rocket powered when I stumbled accross an article about Xcor and their rocket powered air plane
http://www.xcor.com/ezflight10-content.html
Now I know they are not listed as an Xprize contestant, and they are a major aerospace contractor but...this looks pertty good. and as I understand it if no Gov't funds were used in developement they could still apply. All they need is a bigger ship


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Post    Posted on: Tue Sep 23, 2003 5:03 am
"Now I know they are not listed as an Xprize contestant, and they are a major aerospace contractor but...this looks pertty good. and as I understand it if no Gov't funds were used in developement they could still apply. All they need is a bigger ship"

Xcor get equity from the Department of Defence - http://www.xcor.com/dodequity.html

Xcor are also keeping quite tight lipped about their program, but given that the EZ jet is still in its testing cycle, I'm guessing their full-scale vehicle is still a year or so away from completion. It would be a pity if a non x-prize contender got to space first, and took the wind out of x-prizes sails.

On another note - wow, what an exciting time to be alive in terms of space exploration :D One way or another, we're on the verge of a new era of space travel. After the tragedy of Columbia things could very well have gone quiet in the world of human space flight, but now we have several private teams that could very well achieve it within 12 months. Furthermore, the Chinese are about to launch their first man into space. Even India has signalled its intentions to start a manned space program. And if the Chinese, and the Indians start exploring space, it should really shake up the American space program.


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Post Winner in a few months?   Posted on: Sat Sep 27, 2003 1:44 am
http://www.canada.com/technology/story. ... 31BE025CAE

I can believe that Scaled is ready to fly. All they have to do is pop in an engine and get going. But Armadillo? They must be a lot closer to having the big vehicle ready than their website alludes to.


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