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Launch window
2005-Jul-08, 08:26 PM
Someone said as Shuttle returns there was a 28 launch mandate to bring the science up to speed and finish the ISS. So lets say the Shuttle finishes the job, or perhaps it might pick up some small damage in Space that causes a little problem and Congress decides its too risky to keep Shuttle going.
What type of craft will be next for manned space flight ? Perhaps the capsule design would be best, Apollo-type space capsules ? Europeans thought about a Aurora: Mars mission and had a Press briefing in London while Russia's Energia Rocket and Space Corporation have released a full-scale mockup of an untested design it wants to replace the reliable Soyuz it is called the Klipper space plane. Lockheed have a looked at plans for a strange and unique looking ship, Boeing are looking at new rockets and maybe HLV proposals might be better or will they have a new Space plan as a Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) ? Somebody said Griffin favors Shuttle Solid Rocket Booster for Launching CEVs, some said the X-38/CRV program is finished. What are the current CEV proposals and which kind of designs of next generation rockets will NASA need for the Shuttle replacement and missions to Mars, are there are good websites on this ?

Manchurian Taikonaut
2005-Jul-09, 01:01 AM
CEV plan
http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=10732&highlight=
http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=15514&highlight=
http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=22416&highlight=

hammo1j
2005-Jul-10, 10:11 AM
I would like to see the US mothball the Shuttle for manned launch capability, use BDBs to do unmanned probes and have a crack at the space elevator with the manned money.

Here's a list of Equatorial countries

# Sao Tome and Principe
# Gabon
# Republic of The Congo
# Democratic Republic of The Congo
# Uganda
# Kenya
# Somalia
# Indonesia
# Kiribati (the equator may or may not touch dry land)
# Ecuador
# Colombia
# Brazil

All of them could do with the economic boost of siting the SE in their country. If it went ahead wonder which US would choose?

skrap1r0n
2005-Jul-11, 06:46 PM
Is the SE actually feasable now? I mean it's a fantastic idea, but do we have the tech to actually DO it? Do we have the tech to create a nanotube ribbon? How would it handle a storm or hurricane?

I am looking but does anyone know of a decent SE faq page?

John Kierein
2005-Jul-12, 07:20 PM
http://tinyurl.com/ah8zn

Says they've let the contracts which will be downselected from.

skrap1r0n
2005-Jul-12, 07:34 PM
man I dunno, NASA seems like a bureaucratic money sink. I mean take the IIS...Damned expensive. How much more could we have gotten had we used inflatable tech instread of ridgid tech. I really think the next real level of space travel and exploration will be from the private sector. Sure NASA will still be around slogging along, but the privaet sector is gonna blow it away.

I mean Freedom 7 cost the equiv of $1.9 billion (2005 dollars), and Scaled only spent what 40 or so million do do the same thing?

Tensor
2005-Jul-12, 07:36 PM
I mean Freedom 7 cost the equiv of $1.9 billion (2005 dollars), and Scaled only spent what 40 or so million do do the same thing?

That's not a fair comparison. How much would Scaled have spent if they didn't have all the R & D of the last 50 years?

skrap1r0n
2005-Jul-12, 07:40 PM
I mean Freedom 7 cost the equiv of $1.9 billion (2005 dollars), and Scaled only spent what 40 or so million do do the same thing?

That's not a fair comparison. How much would Scaled have spent if they didn't have all the R & D of the last 50 years?

Yeah Perhaps. However, that was for the freedom seven itself, not the redstone/mercury project. To be fair, I am not sure how much of the R&D was seperated from that figure.

Also, it's not as if scaled used a proven design, they had some R&D costs as well.

John Kierein
2005-Jul-12, 09:18 PM
But then Scaled didn't get into orbit yet either. Let alone with such a huge mass. Nor have they de-orbited.

hammo1j
2005-Jul-12, 11:55 PM
There's not a bad link at

http://www.spaceelevator.com/

It seems like NASA is sponsoring some of the challenges, so that might appeal to the "Private Sector does it best" brigade who are quite vocal on this forum. Myself, I think NASA does a good job on a low budget, but, ultimately, it's going to come down to the private sector to get the thing commercialised.

I don't think space travel will ever be commercialised with rockets. There is just too much energy to be supplied and removed. This is especially true of orbital flight where the KE is massive in comparison to PE. This is why the X Prize achievement is so far off orbital space flight, since it only provides PE to lift someone to a height.

The Space elevator is clever in that we only have to provide the PE and let the Earth provide the KE through the normal reaction in the cable/strip which results in the rotation of the earth slowing down minutely *. We don't even have to provide the PE if we drop something down at the same time we lift something up.

I really think NASA could benefit from dropping manned exploration until something like this comes along.

* Wait for the woo woo - Space Elevator will make the working day longer...

skrap1r0n
2005-Jul-13, 02:04 PM
But then Scaled didn't get into orbit yet either. Let alone with such a huge mass. Nor have they de-orbited.

Freedom seven was suborbital as well. NASA wasn't burdened with it either.

jleslie48
2005-Jul-13, 02:37 PM
I always thought the natural next generation of the shuttle was the Russian STS system, the Energia/Buran STS. the shuttle could take off and land without any on-board personell, (much safer for RTF tests) is was far more effecient, and the Energia was designed for multiple heavy lifting purposes. The boosters were also liquid fueled which meant they could be turned on and off.

I would love to see this version be adapted by Nasa.

skrap1r0n
2005-Jul-13, 02:50 PM
ok here's a question. Is a disposable Soyutz launch, cheaper than a reuseable shuttle launch? I would think so, does anyone have the numbers to compare? If it's a cargo issue, then why not launch cargo seperately and hook up after orbital insertion?

I honestly believe that we could have a much larger more efficient program if NASA was willing to wipe the slate clean and start over. All new hardware. I am becoming a huge supporter of the Inflatable Structures, but thats another topic altogether.

ToSeek
2005-Jul-13, 04:45 PM
I mean Freedom 7 cost the equiv of $1.9 billion (2005 dollars), and Scaled only spent what 40 or so million do do the same thing?

How do you figure that? The entirety of Project Mercury only cost about $275 million. Using the CPI inflation rate since then only comes out to about $1.7 billion.

skrap1r0n
2005-Jul-13, 05:37 PM
Ok toseek your right that was the entire mecury program. I somehow got my wires crossed. here's the link I used for the info

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury_program

I adjusted the 1.7 in '95 to 1.9 in 2005.

At any rate, NASA cannot do what scaled did for that amount of money.

publiusr
2005-Jul-13, 08:54 PM
Space elevator talk at www.liftport.com
The strength of carbon nano-tubes has been questioned sadly.

Launch window
2005-Oct-02, 12:07 AM
past RLV plan
http://xnwp021.utc.com/ssi/ssi/Applications/SpaceVehicles/rlv.html
Shuttle MDC study
http://www.astronautix.com/lvs/shulemdc.htm
another past idea : CTV from NASA - X-38 is a prototype of the CRV
http://www.nasaexplores.com/show2_articlea.php?id=01-026
http://www.mems.rice.edu/TAFSM/INTERNSHIP/1999/melton/
new Shuttle idea ?
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/forums/thread-view.asp?tid=310&start=1

publiusr
2005-Oct-05, 06:26 PM
The last one is the one that makes the most sense. The Bimese RLVs cost half as much as the whole moon mission--and lifting bodies still have the Six Million Dollar Man stigma on them.

Launch window
2006-Jan-12, 10:30 AM
NASA Refines Design for Crew Exploration Vehicle
http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=18701
NASA's Constellation Program is making progress toward selecting a prime contractor to design, develop and build the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV), America's first new human spacecraft in 30 years

Spherical
2006-Jan-12, 04:18 PM
Ok toseek your right that was the entire mecury program. I somehow got my wires crossed. here's the link I used for the info

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury_program

I adjusted the 1.7 in '95 to 1.9 in 2005.

At any rate, NASA cannot do what scaled did for that amount of money.
Scaled had materials to work with that NASA did not have available back during the Mercury Program. Scaled also had the benefit of all the research done by NASA and other organizations. Just the aerodynamics alone took a lot of money and a lot of lives to sort out.

NASA is a captive of the US Congress, it pork barrel politics and incessant log rolling. Scaled is largely immune to that madness. On the other hand, Scale has made a lot of money from government contracts. They worked on the B-2 bomber, for instance.

The comparison is not one that is easily made and it is easily distorted. Scaled is not a large enough company to do many of the things that NASA must get done, either, but that may change with the formation of the Spaceship Company. We'll see.

joema
2006-Jan-12, 06:39 PM
SpaceShipOne (SS1) was an impressive achievement, but bears very little resemblance to the energy, capability OR development cost needed for orbital flight. By contrast Freedom 7 (i.e, Mercury) was capable of orbital flight with the Atlas booster.

There's a common misconception that because SS1 reached 65 km (about halfway the min. altitude needed for orbit), it was therefore about halfway way to orbit.

In reality most required orbital energy is expended horizontally attaining orbital speed, not reaching orbital altitude. SS1 reached about 1/65th the energy needed for orbital flight.

Because energy scales as the square of velocity, even the X-15 had about 3x-4x the energy capability of SS1. And the X-15 wasn't remotely capable of air launched orbital flight, despite the B-52 launch platform having vastly more payload capability than White Knight.

I seriously doubt White Knight 2 or SpaceShipTwo, or upgrades to them will be capable of orbit. You'd need something much bigger than a B-52 for sufficient payload to air launch a manned orbital vehicle.

Given enough money, Rutan may be able to build an orbital vehicle, and that would be an incredible achievement. SpaceShipOne is a good first step, but it's a small one. Right now he's about as close to orbit as the Wright brothers were to crossing the Atlantic in 1908.

Van Rijn
2006-Jan-12, 11:04 PM
There's a common misconception that because SS1 reached 65 km (about halfway the min. altitude needed for orbit), it was therefore about halfway way to orbit.


Common? Perhaps in the general publc. General question: Is there anyone here that was unaware that SS1 was far from orbital velocity?



Given enough money, Rutan may be able to build an orbital vehicle, and that would be an incredible achievement. SpaceShipOne is a good first step, but it's a small one. Right now he's about as close to orbit as the Wright brothers were to crossing the Atlantic in 1908.

I disagree - it is not such a great leap. The essential technology exists and fuel costs play a minor role in space operations. The issues will be economic: Will they get enough traffic to support the development of an orbital spacecraft? How much does it cost for an unconventional aerospace company to develop one? Can they build something (probably largely reusable) where the operational costs can be kept to something reasonable?

The answers to these questions and similar ones will dictate whether or not they go orbital.

joema
2006-Jan-12, 11:45 PM
...I disagree - it is not such a great leap. The essential technology exists and fuel costs play a minor role in space operations... .
The essential technology does not exist in SpaceShipOne. The technology needed for a 112 km high, 65 km long, suborbital hop is very different from that needed for orbital flight. It's not just fuel. Heat shielding, aerodynamics, propulsion, booster energy -- all on an entirely different scale for orbital operations.

It's like saying the X-15 (which was 3x-4x the energy performance of SpaceShipOne) developed the technology for orbital flight. It did not. It probed hypersonic flight and low hypersonic speed reentry, which is what SpaceShipOne did. The X-15 nearly burned up (despite spray-on ablative head shielding) when they pushed it to Mach 6.7. The same thing would happen to SpaceShipOne, Two, etc. It would have to be an entirely different design, using different materials technology.

I've met Rutan and Mellville. They are great guys, true pioneers and I wish them the best. If Rutan ever builds an orbital vehicle, SpaceShipOne was a 1st step, but a small one. It is a gigantic leap from SpaceShipOne to orbital flight, and will require far more than refinements to existing SpaceShipOne technology.

Van Rijn
2006-Jan-13, 12:16 AM
The essential technology does not exist in SpaceShipOne. The technology needed for a 112 km high, 65 km long, suborbital hop is very different from that needed for orbital flight.


Well, of course. It wasn't designed to go into orbit. Why would it be designed like an orbital spacecraft?

The point I disagreed with was:


Right now he's about as close to orbit as the Wright brothers were to crossing the Atlantic in 1908.

Which is untrue. There was no existing technology for the Wright brothers to base their work on. They had to break fundamentally new ground. That's not the case here. The technology exists, the science exists, there is experience with orbital flight.



It's not just fuel. Heat shielding, aerodynamics, propulsion, booster energy -- all on an entirely different scale for orbital operations.


You're missing the point about fuel: It is often mistakenly assumed that fuel is a major cost in space flight and technical efficiency is often overemphasized when the primary issue is keeping operational costs down. The issues are economic, not the fundamental technology.

joema
2006-Jan-13, 12:45 AM
he's about as close to orbit as the Wright brothers were to crossing the Atlantic in 1908.
Which is untrue. There was no existing technology for the Wright brothers to base their work on. They had to break fundamentally new ground. That's not the case here. The technology exists, the science exists, there is experience with orbital flight.
But I thought the goal was NOT using previous expensive technology, rather doing it a new way, which requires new development.

In 1908 the Wright brother's longest trip was 77 miles (124 km). To cross the Atlantic requires a minimum of 1900 miles (3057 km). The Wright brothers were short of that by a factor of 25. In theory a Wright Flyer with enough fuel could cross the Atlantic. They didn't need entirely new materials technology.

By contrast SpaceShipOne is short of orbital energy by a factor of 65, conservatively. He needs entirely new (to him) materials technology. Of course he can use previous research. The point is he's SHORT of the needed energy and technology by a lot more than the Wright brothers were short of the technology to cross the Atlantic in 1908.


The issues are economic, not the fundamental technology.
You're right in that given enough money you can buy or develop whatever technology you need. However I was replying to the common misconception (which I've heard many times) that "the essential technology exists", that SpaceShipOne is "almost there", or just needs some refinement, or is a good foundation for achieving orbital flight (pick one). In fact it is a very long way from orbital flight, and any Rutan orbital launcher will be very different from White Knight and SpaceShipOne.

If you call an action/reaction rocket "essential technology", yes Rutan doesn't need to invent that. But if he achieves low cost, reliable, manned orbital flight, he needs to invent or refine a lot of things.

Cugel
2006-Jan-13, 12:45 AM
Well, obviously orbital flight has been achieved and its properties and requirements are well known nowadays. However, I think that a breakthrough is still needed in the safety/reliability of spaceflight. The key question seems to be: how do you make spaceflight orders of magnitudes cheaper while at the same time increasing safety significantly. That's quite a challenge, because for making it cheaper you must fly a lot, 100 of flights per year or so. This means you not only need safe technology, but also very reliable ground procedures. Most accidents are still caused by human error. Keeping this at an affordable price and at the same time survive the initial huge investments is far from easy for a single, small company. To say the least.

Van Rijn
2006-Jan-13, 01:19 AM
But I thought the goal was NOT using previous expensive technology, rather doing it a new way, which requires new development.


The issue isn't expensive technology but high operational costs. What you need is something that is reliable, can be flown a lot and will be flown a lot. Design cost is an issue. It is unclear if it must be as expensive as it would be when done by a conventional aerospace company, but it wouldn't be cheap.



By contrast SpaceShipOne is short of orbital energy by a factor of 65, conservatively. He needs entirely new (to him) materials technology. Of course he can use previous research. The point is he's SHORT of the needed energy and technology by a lot more than the Wright brothers were short of the technology to cross the Atlantic in 1908.


I don't know why you keep mentioning SS1. An orbital spacecraft would be a different design. The materials technology exists. Highly reliable engines (for instance, the RL10 and other engines in that series) exist. The design goals are very different than for a suborbital spacecraft.




You're right in that given enough money you can buy or develop whatever technology you need. However I was replying to the common misconception (which I've heard many times) that "the essential technology exists",


What essential technology required to achieve orbit is missing in your opinion?



that SpaceShipOne is "almost there", or just needs some refinement, or is a good foundation for achieving orbital flight (pick one). In fact it is a very long way from orbital flight, and any Rutan orbital launcher will be very different from White Knight and SpaceShipOne.


Certainly SS1 won't get there. There is no argument on that.



If you call an action/reaction rocket "essential technology", yes Rutan doesn't need to invent that. But if he achieves low cost, reliable, manned orbital flight, he needs to invent or refine a lot of things.

Such as?

joema
2006-Jan-13, 04:25 PM
...It is unclear if it must be as expensive as it would be when done by a conventional aerospace company, but it wouldn't be cheap.
That's exactly my point. To achieve orbital flight, Rutan must do significant development, which wouldn't be cheap. There is a huge leap from a 112 km altitude suborbital hop to orbital flight, which would require at least 65 times the energy and equally upgraded or totally new systems. It's a bigger leap and requires far more development for Rutan to build an orbital vehicle than it would have been for the Wright brothers to cross the Atlantic in 1908.


I don't know why you keep mentioning SS1. An orbital spacecraft would be a different design. The materials technology exists. Highly reliable engines (for instance, the RL10 and other engines in that series) exist. The design goals are very different than for a suborbital spacecraft.
Exactly my point. A totally different design is needed, totally different design goals are needed, completely new and expensive development is needed. I'm not saying it can't be done, just that Rutan's little suborbital hop is such a tiny step to achieving orbital flight that it has relatively little meaning.


What essential technology required to achieve orbit is missing in your opinion?
He needs all the technology (or equivalent) pioneered by NASA and the Soviet Union 45 years ago. Attitude control, heat shielding, environmental control, vastly higher energy boosters (relative to what he's done so far), etc. I'm not saying these can't be done, but his work to date is so small relative to the magnitude required for orbital flight it has relatively little meaning.

E.g, I see frequent statements Rutan will "leverage the technology" he developed for SpaceShipOne to make an orbital vehicle. It's unclear to me what technology that is, since the requirements for orbital flight are so vastly beyond a little 112 km suborbital hop.

He can't use the same heat shield, he can't use conventional graphite-composite construction, he can't use an air drop from a larger vehicle unless he's building something bigger than a B-52. It's unlikely he could use the same "feather" aerodynamics when reentering from orbital speed. He could possibly use a modified version of his inertial nav/attitude reference and cold jet thrusters for attitude control, although the GPS would require custom programming for orbital operation.

It's only a slight exaggeration to say SpaceShipOne has the same relationship to orbital flight as Chuck Yeager's NF-104 flight did to Mercury/Atlas.

I hope Rutan pursues manned orbital flight and I hope he's successful. He could probably do it vastly cheaper than NASA, mainly because of the lower fixed and development costs. He's not paying billions per year for a huge standing army whether he flies or not.

But I've heard many statements by many people that the little suborbital hop by SS1 "opens the way to space", or who compare it to Alan Shepherd's 1961 suborbital flight which immediately led to orbital flight. In reality Rutan's SpaceShipOne flights are so far removed from orbital flight that it's hard to draw conclusions about the success likelihood of follow-on Rutan orbital vehicles.

Van Rijn
2006-Jan-14, 02:20 AM
It's a bigger leap and requires far more development for Rutan to build an orbital vehicle than it would have been for the Wright brothers to cross the Atlantic in 1908.

But I've heard many statements by many people that the little suborbital hop by SS1 "opens the way to space", or who compare it to Alan Shepherd's 1961 suborbital flight which immediately led to orbital flight. In reality Rutan's SpaceShipOne flights are so far removed from orbital flight that it's hard to draw conclusions about the success likelihood of follow-on Rutan orbital vehicles.

We are left with two major points of disagreement.

(1) Your assumption that a private company has to "go it alone" technologically and can't leverage off of the existing aerospace knowledge base. While they certainly will have to do a lot of work, it is unreasonable to compare them to the Wright brothers.

(2) Looking at SS1 strictly from a hardware standpoint but not looking at the business and government ramifications. SS1 has already changed law, increased interest in private passenger space flight dramatically, and started a new industry. If it is a successful industry, then it would indeed be correct to say that SS1 opens the way to space. From a business standpoint, the details of orbital hardware are not nearly as big an issue as whether there is a market to support it.

As for how it works out - we'll see. We need to give it a few years.

joema
2006-Jan-14, 03:21 AM
...Your assumption that a private company has to "go it alone" technologically and can't leverage off of the existing aerospace knowledge base.
I'm not saying that. Rather in spite of the existing knowledge base, more is required to achieve orbital flight than the Wright brothers would have required in 1908 to cross the Atlantic. They could have theoretically done that with a bigger gas tank and bigger plane, with no further technological development at all.

By contrast Rutan, despite leveraging previous work, needs major development on many fronts to achieve orbital flight. I hope he succeeds. He's a very smart guy -- that was obvious when I met him.


SS1 has already changed law, increased interest in private passenger space flight dramatically, and started a new industry.
I don't deny that, nor was I addressing that.


If it is a successful industry, then it would indeed be correct to say that SS1 opens the way to space.
Yes if that were to happen you could say that SS1 was an early pathfinder.

However many people have the misconception that SS1 (or SS1 technology) is fairly close to orbital flight. My main point is SS1 is a very tiny first step, and the remaining hurdles required for orbital flight are huge.

Manchurian Taikonaut
2006-Jan-18, 12:12 PM
Space Exploration: The next big leap
http://www.flightinternational.com/Articles/2006/01/17/Navigation/177/204129/Space+Exploration+The+next+big+leap.html
The next few years will be make-or-break for NASA’s Vision for Space Exploration (VSE), Howard McCurdy, professor of public affairs at the American University in Washington DC, believes. An expert on the agency, McCurdy says advocates of VSE “have only a few years to establish this programme before it becomes vulnerable to death by transition”.


NASA Encounters Possible Problems With Crew Launch Vehicle Design
http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewnews.html?id=1087
According to industry sources, NASA has encountered some problems with its planned CLV (Crew Launch Vehicle) design as spelled out in the yet to be (formally) released Exploration Systems Architecture Study (ESAS) Final Report.

publiusr
2006-Jan-25, 09:30 PM
They are going to hypergolics now--methane is just too involved. Not enough money.

Launch window
2006-Apr-09, 07:34 AM
ok here's a question. Is a disposable Soyutz launch, cheaper than a reuseable shuttle launch? I would think so, does anyone have the numbers to compare? If it's a cargo issue, then why not launch cargo seperately and hook up after orbital insertion?

I honestly believe that we could have a much larger more efficient program if NASA was willing to wipe the slate clean and start over. All new hardware. I am becoming a huge supporter of the Inflatable Structures, but thats another topic altogether.



Griffin told a news conference at Mission Control at Korloyov, following the return of Expedition 12 from the International Space Station that, NASA, of course, will not be able to meet the 2010 deadline, and more time will pass from 2010 to the end of the work to develop a new spaceship.

The U.S. will rely on Russian and other foreign colleagues to have access to the ISS in this time span, he said.

Griffin also announced that the U.S. is working on a piloted research spaceship to replace space shuttles.
interfax news (http://www.interfax.ru/e/B/politics/28.html?id_issue=11494314)
The new spaceship will fly to the ISS, beyond the low earth orbit and to the Moon, the NASA administrator said.

Griffin said the US will continue using Russian spaceships to ferry astronauts and cargoes to the ISS, and thanked the Russian Space Agency for support after the suspension of shuttle flights over the shuttle Columbia disaster. He added that the U.S. will count on Russian colleagues in the future.

Launch window
2006-Jul-29, 10:03 PM
They are going to hypergolics now--methane is just too involved. Not enough money.

Next Moonshot has a name: Project Orion

http://reports.discoverychannel.ca/servlet/an/discovery/1/20060724/060724_discovery_cev_orion/20060724?hub=DiscoveryReport

Doodler
2006-Jul-31, 08:26 PM
I would like to see the US mothball the Shuttle for manned launch capability, use BDBs to do unmanned probes and have a crack at the space elevator with the manned money.

Here's a list of Equatorial countries

# Sao Tome and Principe
# Gabon
# Republic of The Congo
# Democratic Republic of The Congo
# Uganda
# Kenya
# Somalia
# Indonesia
# Kiribati (the equator may or may not touch dry land)
# Ecuador
# Colombia
# Brazil

All of them could do with the economic boost of siting the SE in their country. If it went ahead wonder which US would choose?

Indonesia or Brazil.

No other nation on that list has a stable enough government, sufficiently developed transport infrastructure, and reasonable access to port facilities in one package.

If its the US paying for it, Brazil wins hands down on proximity.

loglo
2006-Aug-01, 01:40 PM
Hi Doodler
You could also use a Non-Equatorial Uniform-Stress Space Elevator (www.mit.edu/people/gassend/publications/NonEquatorialUniformStressSpaceElevators.pdf) to include landing points to sites away from the equator. There are many possible places within +-30 degrees of the equator and there are other advantages as well despite the lessened payload capacity.

Doodler
2006-Aug-01, 06:10 PM
Hi Doodler
You could also use a Non-Equatorial Uniform-Stress Space Elevator (http://www.mit.edu/people/gassend/publications/NonEquatorialUniformStressSpaceElevators.pdf) to include landing points to sites away from the equator. There are many possible places within +-30 degrees of the equator and there are other advantages as well despite the lessened payload capacity.

Good stuff, but considering that the equator is the optimal spot, the nation in question has a newly minted space program with operational status and strongly supported interest in spaceflight, and they're one of the most stable nations in the area of interest, I'd still go with Brazil.

Just my personal $.02.

loglo
2006-Aug-01, 07:18 PM
I'd still go with Brazil.

Sure.. and it has a large educated population too which always helps.

selden
2006-Aug-01, 09:39 PM
Relating back to the earlier discussion about Rutan and SS1 capabilities, Scaled Composites has been involved in the efforts by t/Space to design an airborne launching system for their CXV COTS proposal. Supposedly they made it through the first round of COTS approvals.

See http://www.transformspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=projects.viewalbum&workid=CCD3097A-96B6-175C-97F15F270F2B83AA&albumid=EB30DFB5-96B6-175C-917444B2997782E4
for sketches of a possible SC launch vehicle.