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Sir Richard in on the action

Posted by: Bullspace - Fri Jun 11, 2004 2:34 pm
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Sir Richard in on the action 
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Post H2O2 Orbital   Posted on: Sat Jun 12, 2004 2:58 pm
They can get to orbit with hydrogen peroxide. The Brittish did it with the Black Arrow. Before they abandoned their program (which should have a special notation in some history of bad decisionmaking, somewhere), they had plans to enlarge the Black Arrow significantly.


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Post    Posted on: Sat Jun 12, 2004 3:15 pm
TJ wrote:
The big question in my mind is who's going to get to orbit first. That's going to be quite an accomplishment.

and quite a wait as well i presume :wink:

edit: maybe the x-prize will result in more companies being interested in picking up old ideas like this one: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/293366.stm

even though the space shuttle seems to be lying on it's deathbed (the idea on using the tanks probably isn't practical anymore)


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Post Re: H2O2 Orbital   Posted on: Sat Jun 12, 2004 4:22 pm
bad_astra wrote:
They can get to orbit with hydrogen peroxide. The Brittish did it with the Black Arrow. Before they abandoned their program (which should have a special notation in some history of bad decisionmaking, somewhere), they had plans to enlarge the Black Arrow significantly.


That's news to me and good news as far as I'm concerned. I certainly agree that the British giving up such a program was a bad decision.

n54 wrote:
[and quite a wait as well i presume :wink:

edit: maybe the x-prize will result in more companies being interested in picking up old ideas like this one: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/293366.stm

even though the space shuttle seems to be lying on it's deathbed (the idea on using the tanks probably isn't practical anymore)

I'm hoping for 5 years but I can be overly optimistic on some things.

Not at least trying to use one tank for some experiments along those lines is a real waste.

As for the shuttly being on it's deathbed, one can only hope. Sorry I know that is was an incredible achievement and all but using 20/20 hindsight, it should never have been used for anything more than an X-vehicle. It's time to give up the shuttle in my opinion.


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Post    Posted on: Sun Jun 13, 2004 5:55 pm
The shuttle even made a bad X-Plane. Like the X-33 it tried to do to many things at once without having an express need to do so. NASA needed a reason to exist and after Apollo, that reason quickly became STS. But then STS needed a reason to exist, and that reason grew into Space Station Freedom. All during that time the Russians were manning their own space station and supplying it using ELV's. Meanwhile the shuttle's only good points were that it was a safer (and just possibly cheaper) way to get a big payload up then Titan IV, provided massive pork for congressional districts all over the map, and could bring things back from orbit, which it did less then a handful of times.

By the time America had gotten around to REALLY thinking about replacing the shuttle (not that it needed replacing, as it never had a very well defined job, anyway), the DoD was not longer intersted in the Shuttle and had scrapped the SLC-6 facilities. LockMart sold NASA on the snakeoil X-33/Venturestar, and the rest is saddening history.

I don't know if the shuttle ever COULD have been a good idea. In retrospect it nearly killed the US launcher market, by creating a state owned monopoly on launch services just as the industry was cutting its teeth. Maybe if the DOD hadn't forced NASA to require wings for crossrange, we could have had something more like Big Gemini, with reusable Saturn Ib stages. Maybe if the DOD hadn't required shuttle to be so damned big, it wouldn't have needed SRBs. Maybe if someone had forseen the drag problems on Skylab and made certain that getting soemthing ready quick enough to dock to skylab before it was lost forever was a key priority.. Maybe pigs would've flown. Oh stuff it, happier days are here now.


Best wishes to Melville or Binnie or whoever is in that seat on June 21!


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Post    Posted on: Mon Jun 14, 2004 8:28 am
Nice picture of Black Arrow Bad_Astra! I see you all forsee Branson joining up with the rich set at Scaled being almost a dead cert then? Virgin Space coming to an airport near you. I just hope it takes after the airline and not the rail service! :roll:

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Post    Posted on: Mon Jun 14, 2004 11:25 am
Sir Richard certainly gets around. He just set a record for crossing the English Channel in an amphibious sports car a la James Bond.

http://www.cnn.com/2004/WORLD/europe/06/14/branson.record.reut/index.html

Going to be interesting seeming what he announces soon.

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Post    Posted on: Mon Jun 14, 2004 5:06 pm
Does anyone know enough about this Sir Richard to guess if there any chance that he might support someone other than Scaled?


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Post    Posted on: Mon Jun 14, 2004 5:25 pm
Branson is very well known in the world of business. The guesses that he's supporting Scaled are based on his current project with them (the nonstop jet flight around the world). But it could be anyone he's supporting (except maybe BRNA or the antigrav project that got rejected by the X Prize folk). But, who knows? A little suspense here. :D

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Post    Posted on: Mon Jun 14, 2004 5:32 pm
I could see it either way myself. Being already involved with Scaled supports the idea that he would work with them. Although SS1 entering space would be a big enough event that anyone revealing something unrelated to Scaled but involving space tourism would be smart to announce it then.


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Post    Posted on: Mon Jun 14, 2004 7:12 pm
Branson does like balloons.. so who knows maybe Da Vinci, but he's working closely with Scaled already, and as others have mentioned, Scaled has shown images of "Tier 2" with a much larger version of SS1 (SS2) that would need to be piggybacked or towed by a large jet.


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