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Space - reinventing the wheel

#1
NASA have announced the latest launch vehicle for manned space exploration- the Space Launch System (SLS). An uncanny resemblance to Saturn V/Apollo with a pair of SRBs nailed to the side.

Will be good to see a big feck off rocket launching its way in to proper space as opposed to the frankly dull Shuttles tip-toeing around near Earth orbit. Time for NASA to revert back to crisp white shirts, high and tight crew cuts and give Gene Kranz his job back? I hope so!


More gen here on wiki


and here from NASA

Sls-launching-art.jpg
 
#2
Apparently this is the way ahead in space travel. It cheaper and easier to build disposable launchers than re-use the shuttle.

The shuttles key draw of fast reuse was never really realised, although it did play a part in skimming more money out of the Soviet budget when they developed Buran to counter the shuttle.

The two 'disasters' were a bit of a p1sser too.
 
#3
From the NASA article
The SLS will have an initial lift capacity of 70 metric tons. That's more than 154,000 pounds, or 77 tons, roughly the weight of 40 sport utility vehicles. The lift capacity will be evolvable to 130 metric tons -- more than 286,000 pounds, or 143 tons -- enough to lift 75 SUVs. The first developmental flight, or mission, is targeted for the end of 2017.

Fek me that's some sized beast, Gene's missus will have to get the needle and thread out and start knocking up a few more waistcoats
 
#4
They'll need the weight... they want to go to Mars with this thing.

I know its a bit Sci-Fi... but if we want to go galavanting around space, shouldn't we be building some sort of permenant space craft up in orbit? They want to go Mars, but surely with a payload of a mere 70 tons (in this instance it is 'mere') how do we get enough food, air, water and w4nk mags on board for the journey?
 

maguire

LE
Book Reviewer
#5
nice to have a proper escape mechanism rather than a parachute and 'lets hope it doesnt blow up'. as for 'The shuttles key draw of fast reuse was never really realised' - substitute 'never really existed' and you're closer. the Shuttle as the engineers wanted to build it may have stood a chance at getting to that level of usability - the Shuttle after the accountants had got their hands on it never would.
 
#7
They'll need the weight... they want to go to Mars with this thing.

I know its a bit Sci-Fi... but if we want to go galavanting around space, shouldn't we be building some sort of permenant space craft up in orbit? They want to go Mars, but surely with a payload of a mere 70 tons (in this instance it is 'mere') how do we get enough food, air, water and w4nk mags on board for the journey?
One way to make it more efficient is to get rid of those 75 sport utility vehicles they'll be carrying!

Funnily enough it was one of Wernher von Brauns untermench who suggested Earth orbit rendezvous as a solution to lunar and deep space travel for Apollo. But good ole Wernher just wanted to build ******* big rockets hence Saturn V. You'd like to hope the ISS is factored in to being a rocket factory for deep space but it just appears to be a place where geeks **** off to grow plants and look at ants having sex in zero G. Arthur C Clarke would be spinning in his grave.

I'm off to watch 'the Right Stuff' and 'From the Earth to the Moon' again :-D
 
#8
They want to go Mars, but surely with a payload of a mere 70 tons (in this instance it is 'mere') how do we get enough food, air, water and w4nk mags on board for the journey?
Simple. Cut back on the food and water.

It's actually quite nice to see that even with their economy going down the shitter the yanks can still articulate a vision and act on it. That's pretty damned inspiring, IMO, and shows the best of their nation.
 
#9
... one of Wernher von Brauns untermench who suggested Earth orbit rendezvous as a solution to lunar and deep space travel for Apollo. But good ole Wernher just wanted to build ******* big rockets hence Saturn V....
Nothing to do with the fact that they were in a race which the USSR appeared to be winning, and that to build a space station in addition to everything else would have added extra complications and obviously time. GBFO rockets were the pragmatic answer, build one big enough to take the minimum payload required to reach the moon and return, and you cut out the need for a staging post.
 
#10
Nothing to do with the fact that they were in a race which the USSR appeared to be winning, and that to build a space station in addition to everything else would have added extra complications and obviously time. GBFO rockets were the pragmatic answer, build one big enough to take the minimum payload required to reach the moon and return, and you cut out the need for a staging post.
Good point, well spotted!


As a matter of interest (forgetting the space race and that being the massive driver to what was actually achieved on both sides of the curtain), imagine what could have been achieved if the US had collaborated with the USSR? I think we'd all be living on Mars by now :-D
 
#14
So they got an old Saturn V, dusted it down. Get a load of shuttle orbiter engines and nail them to the bottom, cable tie a couple spare SRB's to it. Hey Presto, present $17 billion dollar bill to US government.

Sounds familiar.
 
#16
The Skylon blokes must be rubbing their hands in glee as NASA seems ever more backwards looking.

The thing about the Shuttle was that it was basically a prototype or first try at something that was never really followed up properly. It's the equivalent of giving up on the idea of locomotives because Trevithick's first try had a few problems and blew up (because it's operators went down the pub...).
 
#17
At last!
Someone else who saw it!
It was excellent, I thought
Probably the best mini-series ever made. I like to watch the whole thing in one go every couple of months. Just makes you realise what they actually achieved in such a short space of time. In 2998 days, they went from chucking Al Shepard up to 115 miles to plonking Buzz and Neil on the moon 239,000 miles away.

And we've gone from this;

lynx-wg13-dev_web.jpg

to this:

AW159.jpg

in 40 years......
 
#18
Good point, well spotted!


As a matter of interest (forgetting the space race and that being the massive driver to what was actually achieved on both sides of the curtain), imagine what could have been achieved if the US had collaborated with the USSR? I think we'd all be living on Mars by now :-D
Maybe, or maybe the lack of competition would have had it stagnate into one BFO bureaucratic money-sink. Who knows?

Anyway, "the chances of anyone living on Mars, are a million to one they say".

Christ, I can still remember that first Lunar landing. If it wasn't mankind's greatest achievement, it has to be up-there with them. It was the most inspiring moment in my life so far.

Good find BTW. :thumright:
 

maguire

LE
Book Reviewer
#19
So they got an old Saturn V, dusted it down. Get a load of shuttle orbiter engines and nail them to the bottom, cable tie a couple spare SRB's to it. Hey Presto, present $17 billion dollar bill to US government.

Sounds familiar.
I dont know...I read an article some time ago which claimed the Sovs found soyuz/progress boosters relatively cheap to run as built in (relatively, for this kind of thing) large quantities. they also salvaged a lot of bits from spent boosters as well apparently, bringing costs down further. Presumably this new booster's SRB's will be recoverable...presumably it would too much sense to recover the 5 ssme's from the first stage after each launch, wouldnt it? then you'd only really be throwing away the fuel tankage and the upper stage eacht ime you launched.
 
#20
Probably the best mini-series ever made. I like to watch the whole thing in one go every couple of months. Just makes you realise what they actually achieved in such a short space of time. In 2998 days, they went from chucking Al Shepard up to 115 miles to plonking Buzz and Neil on the moon 239,000 miles away.

And we've gone from this;

View attachment 50627

to this:

View attachment 50628

in 40 years......
lol, I thought the episode where they were trained as geologists was particularly interesting.
 

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