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Last 3 LLC teams

Posted by: fatron - Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:17 am
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Last 3 LLC teams 
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Post Last 3 LLC teams   Posted on: Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:17 am
According to the Xprize LLC web site, the last 3 teams only had until August, 31st to remain anonymous. They haven't been announced yet, so I'm wondering how competitive they'll be, or if they'll even fly.

In looking at the websites of the teams that have been announced, it looks like Armadillo is the only one who has flown. All the others still appear to still be testing engines.

The FAA site isn't showing any launch permits yet. I'm assuming that since teams need to get a permit to test that permits will show up on the FAA site soon. I'm getting anxious to see what the challenge will be like this year.


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Post    Posted on: Thu Sep 04, 2008 2:37 pm
I honestly doubt, that we well see anybody compete in the LLC this year besides Armadillo Aerospace and maybe Unreasonable Rocket.

Masten Space: isn't competing this year, so they won't be one of the secret teams.

BonNova: seems to have a working engine, but as Masten found out last year: the engine isn't really the hard part to achieve flight, but controls and flightsoftware are!

ParagonLabs: has a poorly maintained website, there isn't anything new there since last year. I would not bet my money on them to compete. But to be honest I don't really know what to think about them, according to the info on the LLC page they have a working suborbital vehicle?! and several different engines. But the lack of information about their LLC efforts puzzles me.

Team Phoenicia: they have some fancy animations of a 7-engine design. I think that is a far too complex configuration for a "simple" vehicle. Do they even have any bit of hardware completed yet?

TrueZer0: They have a vehicle similar to the one Paul Breed is currently working on. Actually looks promising, but first they have to demonstrate a full duration run of the engine (or multiple ones to show reliability) and of course stable flight. Maybe they can surprise us?


If anybody besides Unreasonable and Armadillo actually competes, it would make the LLC08 even more amazing/interesting, but I would not bet my money on any of those teams.


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Post    Posted on: Fri Sep 05, 2008 3:10 am
I've been following the LLC and especially Paul Breed for a while now and yeah I agree with Marcus, Armadillo and Unreasonable Rocket are the favourites.
But looking at Truezer0 they do look promising and could well be the supprising entrant from looking at their website.
Only time will tell though!!!
Looking foward to it!!!


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Post    Posted on: Sat Sep 06, 2008 1:18 am
Marcus Zottl wrote:
BonNova: seems to have a working engine, but as Masten found out last year: the engine isn't really the hard part to achieve flight, but controls and flightsoftware are!


I'm not so sure about that. Look at how AA progressed. Lot's of engine problems/challenges. Then, in what seemed like an amazingly short time following LLC '07, they whipped together the film cooled engine and it's been roses ever since. As you look back on the AA story, it appears that they had a variety of workable control configurations long before they had an engine that started and ran smooth every time.

I've been looking over the other competitors sites as well. Nobody is showing a replicable hover, much less an LLC flight profile. Is everyone else just playing it all close to their vest? I thought that we might see at least a few flight profile tests from some of these guys. I'm sceptical that even Unreasonable will fly. Their website implies that they're showing us progress updates, but where is their flight profile video or hover test?

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Post    Posted on: Sun Sep 07, 2008 4:36 pm
How about Blue Origin? They did a test flight almost two years ago, they should be able to compete or not?
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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:39 am
You know, there was a big pow wow recently in preparation for the LLC '08 and everyone was supposed to be there that was going to compete. The only hint I've gotten has been a comment by Team Phoenicia about some new configuration that they hope to see fly by a new (?) team.

It's past Aug 31st now. It seems like we would have heard something if one of the mystery teams turned out to be Blue Origin. That would be big news. John Carmack makes very little mention of them. However, they seem to be the only other group that has flown. Of course, it looks like Jeff Bezos is pouring a ton of money into it. That alone reduces my awe factor. I am far more interested to see the comparitively austere teams crack this problem.

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Post Got a response from LLC '08   Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:35 pm
Hello Everyone,

I got this response from the LLC '08 people. Copied below:

RE: [Press] 2008 LLC competitors
From: Becky Ramsey (Becky.Ramsey@xprize.org)
You may not know this sender. Mark as safe | Mark as unsafe
Sent:Mon 9/08/08 7:44 AM
To: memhopkins@hotmail.com; prcontact (prcontact@xprize.org)





Hi Marc,

Thanks for your email. We are working on the official announcement of the mystery teams, and hope to have that out soon. The list on the website will be updated early this week.

Thanks,Becky Ramsey

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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2008 6:27 pm
Sharky wrote:
How about Blue Origin? They did a test flight almost two years ago, they should be able to compete or not?
Andre


Blue Origin has no reason to compete. They won't have to do it for the money because 2 million dollars is chump change for Bezos. They probably do not have the time either because they should be hard at work designing New Shepard.

Bezos has far bigger goals than winning the small lunar lander challenge.


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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2008 6:34 pm
Soyuz wrote:
Blue Origin has no reason to compete. They won't have to do it for the money because 2 million dollars is chump change for Bezos. They probably do not have the time either because they should be hard at work designing New Shepard.

Bezos has far bigger goals than winning the small lunar lander challenge.


I believe this is the correct answer. For the first Lunar Lander Challenge, it could have been argued that they didn't compete because hydrogen peroxide was not among acceptable propellants per the rules, but last year H202 up to 90% concentration was allowed. Now, it could be that the concentration Blue Origin is using is higher than 90%, but I doubt that's the answer. I think "Soyuz" has it nailed.


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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2008 7:10 pm
After seeing the size of Blue Origin's vehicle, I'm not so sure it would even fit on one of the LLC landing pads (assuming they were planning to use the same vehicle in their videos).


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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 08, 2008 7:24 pm
Speaking of Blue Origin's intent. Any thoughts on what you plan on after the LLC '08.

I'm hoping to seeing some altitude, quad or six-pack work. Is that further development dependent on winning the LLC?

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Post    Posted on: Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:39 pm
MarcHopkins wrote:
I'm hoping to seeing some altitude, quad or six-pack work. Is that further development dependent on winning the LLC?

That's pretty much the plan. Not winning LLC would just make that a bit more difficult, but that would still be the plan.


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Post    Posted on: Thu Sep 18, 2008 9:57 pm
Just realized, that this thread isn't exactly in the right forum, but anyway since there is no other on this topic:

Looks like the folks over at the xprize foundation have a very weird definition of the term "early this week". Is there anybody out there, who could shed some light into the whole mystery-team issue? As far as I can tell there is no longer any "NDA" under which they can remain secret.
I begin to wonder if there even are any of those teams left... maybe they've already retreated and that's why there hasn't been an announcement?


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Post    Posted on: Fri Sep 19, 2008 3:05 am
I think Armadillo will be the only team. At least the FAA issued only one license.

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Post Unreasonable   Posted on: Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:16 am
Has anyone seen the footage posted by Paul Breed on his latest tethered test flight. I've got to applaud that team for their perseverance.

I'm having trouble finding any other video footage of any other team (AA excluded, of course) doing any flight testing. It would be a lot of fun to see a fly-off at LLC '08.

Can anyone help me with some links of other "competitors" actually trying to fly?

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