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Thread: Relativity Space's Terran series of rockets

  1. #1
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    Relativity Space's Terran series of rockets

    "Relativity Space reveals fully reusable medium lift launch vehicle Terran R"

    https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2021...eals-terran-r/

    Relativity Space, leveraging their 3D printing technology, has announced the next step towards supporting multiplanetary spaceflight: a fully reusable, medium lift launch vehicle named Terran R.

    The companyís second launch vehicle, succeeding the Terran 1 rocket to debut later this year, will have more payload capacity than the partially reusable SpaceX Falcon 9, and is only the second fully reusable commercial launch vehicle to be revealed publicly after SpaceXís Starship.
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  2. #2
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    Ars technica has an article on it too:

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2021...it/?comments=1

    I wish them luck, competition would be great for SpaceX. A fully reusable rocket would be great, but as usual Iíll wait until they have it flying before I get too impressed and excited. Or, put it another way, Iíll believe it when I see it.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." ó Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

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  3. #3
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    Of all the startups, I'm especially skeptical of Relativity. They're treating 3D printing as a magic wand. You build a good rocket by setting out to build a good rocket, but their goal is building a rocket by printing it.

    SpaceX, Rocket Lab, etc. are not ignoring 3D printing technologies, they're using them wherever they can find an advantage in doing so, but 3D printing technologies have their own set of benefits and limitations. Sometimes it makes more sense to use materials that can't be printed, or more efficient processes to build things up from simple shapes, but Relativity Space is ruling these alternatives out before they even start. I just don't see this leading to a superior or even a competitive product...their printers are going to spend months fabricating structures a rolling mill could produce in seconds.

  4. #4
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    I have no idea whether 3D printing will help or hinder them, I’ll just say that a fully reusable Falcon 9 equivalent rocket would be a huge technological accomplishment, and I expect it would be hard to achieve, so I’m skeptical just on general principles. But I wish them luck.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." ó Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

    The Leif Ericson Cruiser

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjameshuff View Post
    Of all the startups, I'm especially skeptical of Relativity. ..
    Iím skeptical just on general principles (Van Rijn)
    Thanks Van Rijn and cjameshoff. When I first read it I thought 'that sounds too good to be true'. And now I'm a bit more convinced that this is probably the case.

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