Page 1 of 6 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 151

Thread: This rocket won't die...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034

    This rocket won't die...

    By which I mean that the ATK 'Liberty' is still being developed:

    ATK's Liberty rocket targets 2015 debut

    Which all sounds well and good until you get near the bottom where the big snag is revealed:
    Kent Rominger confirmed that the 2015 target for a first crewed launch was dependent on Nasa choosing Liberty as one of its preferred systems, in which case it would then receive financial support.
    In other words if they can cream off a chunk of CCDev they can develop this by 2015. Even if they got such funding I'm more than dubious about that date. This would be about the same time frame as a manned Dragon, a CST-100 or even Dreamchaser, all of which appear to be a lot further along in the design process. And there is also the small question of how this rocket which is essentially a derivative of the Ares-1 can be ready sooner than that rocket would have been while having so much less money put into it?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    3,767
    "I know I've been bad, but I can do better. This time I mean it, I really mean it. You've just got to trust me baby"


    They even had the audacity to show a chart showing just how dreadful the vibration was on Ares 1 and how Liberty would be better.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    4,332
    I note that their projected price is higher per launch than Falcon Heavy, nearly 4 times higher per kg, while launching less than half the mass to LEO. It's also higher per launch than Atlas V Heavy and Delta IV Heavy, while lifting a comparable payload.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    7,307
    See also The BA's Post on the subject. Color me unimpressed.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    See also The BA's Post on the subject. Color me unimpressed.
    Yeah he seems to have missed the part where they admit they need a chunk of CCDev money, for which read all of it, to make this deadline.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    8,198
    In this week's article from "Aviation Week & Space Technology" May 7, 2012 edition--page 21--we see this quote from Jean-Lin Fournereaux, COO for Safran: "This project is a very smart project, low-risk, low-cost, using almost off-the-shelf products..." Safran USA also looks to be producing solid rocket propellants. On page 29 of the same issue we see information on Blue Origin's Space Vehicle, and Liberty is talked about once again on page 30:

    "Boeing and perhaps other companies (developing capsules) are considering Liberty as a possible lower-cost alternative to the Atlas V."

    http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2012/...acecraft-mlas/
    http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/ind...?topic=28840.0

    Oh well--I guess we will wait and see.


    Ironically, the beggest news in this issue of AV WEEK was the page 24 story of Delta buying its own refinery. I think we are seeing vertical integration on a come back--and not just in launch vehicle assembly: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vertical_integration

    Here is a novel idea for Musk and others. Buy your own small oil field in Texas, and supply your own rocket fuel.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    13,132
    I presume this is how women who date feel when they see their ex-boyfriends acting dumb in public.

    Giggle, avert your eyes, and keep on walking.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    8,198
    I'm not so ready as to count them out yet. There are a lot of folks looking for contracts. In the article from Av Week and space I list above--in other news--Dream Chaser will have a 2g load on the crew as opposed to a 5 g tounchdown from Boeing's capsule. (page30).

    One question I'd like to know is this. Based on everything I've read (esp. SPACEFLIGHT IN THE ERA OF AEROSPACEPLANES), top-mount spaceplanes are subject to weight creep, pitch-loads, bending moments, etc. So a rugged, engine-out vehicle like Falcon 9 would make more sense than Atlas V.

    But if even the alt.spacers on the payload side of things won't ride atop their brothers in the alt.LV community, then what does that say about folks who don't have ATKs/Lockheed's chops?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    3,767
    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    In this week's article from "Aviation Week & Space Technology" May 7, 2012 edition--page 21--we see this quote from Jean-Lin Fournereaux, COO for Safran: "This project is a very smart project, low-risk, low-cost, using almost off-the-shelf products..."
    Apart from the fact it's not low cost. It's very high cost. As for risk...the team have demonstrated that they will happily take government money and work on a vehicle they knew to be dangerous. Frankly - I'd call dealing with them a risk.

    Here is a novel idea for Musk and others. Buy your own small oil field in Texas, and supply your own rocket fuel.
    What's the benefit? Economics of scale dictate they wont be able to do it cheaper than just buying ready to go RP1 off the shelf. Why attempt to reinvent that particular wheel. Even if you save a buck per gallon, you're not saving a statistically significant portion of the cost to fly the vehicle. There are far more important and impacting areas to focus on.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    8,198
    Delta doesn't see having their own oil field as anything but a way to save money. If you can supply your own fuel at cost, then rising fuel prices won't affect your profits as much. As for Safran--it's easy to call it salesmanship--but I don't think their COO is stupid either. Notice what I said about Safran USA also buying into solid production--vertical integration again, it seems.

    Quote Originally Posted by djellison View Post

    Frankly - I'd call dealing with them a risk.
    That's also true with the alt.spacers

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034
    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    In this week's article from "Aviation Week & Space Technology" May 7, 2012 edition--page 21--we see this quote from Jean-Lin Fournereaux, COO for Safran: "This project is a very smart project, low-risk, low-cost, using almost off-the-shelf products..." Safran USA also looks to be producing solid rocket propellants.
    This is the same argument made for the Ares-1, and it proved specious then. Rockets are not lego sets, this kind of rearrangement is almost bound to throw up problems. As for the notion Boeing et al are considering it as an alternative to the Atlas V it seems far fetched. Any cost benefits are purely theoretical at this point and the Atlas V is a known and reliable vehicle, when you are talking about manned flights that has to be a consideration. If they really wanted lower launch costs they would looking at a Falcon derivative, not Liberty.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    7,307
    It's a shuttle SRB with an Ariane 5 first stage as the second stage. Why not a just use a really proven system -- Ariane 5 all by itself?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    3,767
    Because politically that would be no better than the current problem of buying rockets from Russia.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    10,438
    Within the bounds of forum rules on political content, I really do have to have say this...

    I SMELL BACONNNNNN!!!!!

    This thing's continued existance must be the result of someone in DC massaging priorities for pork spending.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034
    Quote Originally Posted by djellison View Post
    Because politically that would be no better than the current problem of buying rockets from Russia.
    Besides ATK couldn't squeeze any more money out of NASA if they did that.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    8,198
    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
    This is the same argument made for the Ares-1, and it proved specious then.
    It isn't specious at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    It's a shuttle SRB with an Ariane 5 first stage as the second stage. Why not a just use a really proven system -- Ariane 5 all by itself?
    That is a good question. You'd think that Safran would encourage ATK to have an Americanized Ariane 5, but with two larger solids than used now on Vega--two stumpy SRBs so the vehicle wouldn't be as tall.

    Other solids:
    http://www.astronautix.com/engines/srm1.htm
    http://www.astronautix.com/engines/p230.htm

    According to Wade the SRM was used on Titan 34 and Shuttle. That doesn't seem right. I thought Titan solids were a bit smaller in size--closer to Ariane 5's...

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    3,767
    Publiusr - why do you continue to treat rockets like lego blocks? It doesn't work that way.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    8,198
    To say that rockets aren't "Legos" as you put it tells me you haven't heard of Atlas Able, Thor Able, Thor Able Star--etc.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlas-Able
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thor-Ablestar

    So as you can clearly see, there is a history of mixing and matching after all--going all the way back to Bumper WAC:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bumper_(rocket)

    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
    As for the notion Boeing et al are considering it as an alternative to the Atlas V it seems far fetched.
    I'm just telling you what was reported in AV WEEK. Now have they gotten some things wrong in the past? I imagine all publications do.

    The biggest controversy was over this: http://www.thelivingmoon.com/45jack_...paceplane.html
    http://www.aviationweek.com/Blogs.as...c-10f2622b4029

    But by and large Av Week is a respectable--and reliable--publication.
    Last edited by publiusr; 2012-May-12 at 05:12 PM.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    The Great NorthWet
    Posts
    7,307
    I was just looking up the Boeing CST-100 and, at least according to Wikipedia, they say the same thing about needing the NASA funding to continue. It's probably true of SpaceX as well when you get down to it. Still, it's a pretty exciting time for the future of American manned space travel with at least four efforts under way. At least the CST-100 is planned to be launched on an existing rocket.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034
    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    To say that rockets aren't "Legos" as you put it tells me you haven't heard of Atlas Able, Thor Able, Thor Able Star--etc.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlas-Able
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thor-Ablestar

    So as you can clearly see, there is a history of mixing and matching after all--going all the way back to Bumper WAC:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bumper_(rocket)
    Did you actually read those links you provided?

    Atlas-Able
    Total launches 3
    Failures 3

    Bumper(A research vehicle consisting of a sounding rocket stuck on top of a V2)
    8 Launches only one of which was a complete success

    Thor-Ablestar
    Total launches 19
    Successes 12
    Failures 5
    Partial failures 2

    Not exactly resounding endorsements for the 'Lego rocket' approach are they?

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034
    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    I was just looking up the Boeing CST-100 and, at least according to Wikipedia, they say the same thing about needing the NASA funding to continue. It's probably true of SpaceX as well when you get down to it. Still, it's a pretty exciting time for the future of American manned space travel with at least four efforts under way. At least the CST-100 is planned to be launched on an existing rocket.
    You have a number of projects like Dragon/Falcon 9, CST-100, and Dreamchaser that have received CCDev funding and are a long way towards having working hardware. Then you have Liberty which exists only on paper and has already been rejected once by NASA, twice if you count Ares-1. The only exciting news from ATK would be that they've dropped this and decided to focus on squeezing as much money as they can out of the SLS.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    3,767
    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
    Did you actually read those links you provided?
    Clearly he doesn't - they are all damning indictments against the case he's trying to make.

    13 success out of 30 launches across the projects he cites....I'm not sure that's 'man rated'

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    14,064
    Well, the electric chair is also man-rated...

    In defence of the legorockets, these projects were from the very early days of spaceflight. Perhaps such endeavours would go better today. Still, it will be a huge challenge & project if both parts weren't made for each other from the start.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    8,198
    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
    Not exactly resounding endorsements for the 'Lego rocket' approach are they?
    Bumper is how we learned staging--and if you will recall, all early LVs were a bit wonky. 12 successes is nothing to sneeze at.

    Centaur has been used on Titans, the new Atlas, etc. I'd say that IS a resounding endorsement.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    705

    Thumbs down

    Oh my, frankenstein is back! Or most ridiculous rocket currently in development.

    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    Bumper is how we learned staging--and if you will recall, all early LVs were a bit wonky.
    Do you have any modern examples of LEGO rocketry besides Liberty itself? Preferably with a little more successful history.

  26. #26
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034
    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    Bumper is how we learned staging--and if you will recall, all early LVs were a bit wonky. 12 successes is nothing to sneeze at.

    Centaur has been used on Titans, the new Atlas, etc. I'd say that IS a resounding endorsement.
    You really think think Centaur is a reasonable comparison to the monstrosity that is Liberty? It's going to be more expensive than alternates that already fly without offering any new capability. Liberty is simply the product of ATK realizing there's a pot of NASA money they haven't gotten a hand in. They have a piece of COTS through their involvement in the Taurus II or Antares as it is now known. They have a chunk of the SLS funding, and still they have to find a way to get a piece of the CCDev cake.

  27. #27
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    1,686
    Here's a relevant past discussion -- read from the linked post on: http://www.bautforum.com/showthread....72#post1760772

    Short version: US gov't uses solid motors in its space program to subsidize missile manufacturers.

    Thus, in a contrived way, Liberty actually makes a lot of sense: ATK gets their subsidy, and Arianespace gets access to US gov't orders. It's a clear win for both parties.

  28. #28
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    4,034
    Quote Originally Posted by kamaz View Post
    Here's a relevant past discussion -- read from the linked post on: http://www.bautforum.com/showthread....72#post1760772

    Short version: US gov't uses solid motors in its space program to subsidize missile manufacturers.

    Thus, in a contrived way, Liberty actually makes a lot of sense: ATK gets their subsidy, and Arianespace gets access to US gov't orders. It's a clear win for both parties.
    And a clear lose lose for anyone interested in opening up space access, they might as well just restart the Ares-1. If ATK needs a subsidy why doesn't the DOD come up with some pointless project for them to do? They certainly have more money to spend than NASA.

  29. #29
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    440
    Quote Originally Posted by kamaz View Post
    Here's a relevant past discussion -- read from the linked post on: http://www.bautforum.com/showthread....72#post1760772

    Short version: US gov't uses solid motors in its space program to subsidize missile manufacturers.

    Thus, in a contrived way, Liberty actually makes a lot of sense: ATK gets their subsidy, and Arianespace gets access to US gov't orders. It's a clear win for both parties.

    Wasn't the whole point of COTS and CCDev to get away from doing that? It makes no sense at all for anyone except certain special interests.

  30. #30
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    N.E.Ohio
    Posts
    19,815
    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    Delta doesn't see having their own oil field as anything but a way to save money. If you can supply your own fuel at cost, then rising fuel prices won't affect your profits as much...
    But Djellison is talking about scale. Here's a comparison.
    Delta uses 3.9B gal of fuel/year... 36% of it's budget.
    So; saving a buck on fuel translates to well over 10% of thier operating expenses.

    Falcon 9 uses 29K gallons of kerosene. At $3/gal (using Delta's cost) they would save $58K per launch. Or about 1% of thier launch cost.

    The realistic numbers would be based on Delta's savings:
    Delta is only expecting to save $300M with this move. Or about $0.08/Gal.

    Now the numbers are Delta: 3%, Falcon 0.004%.

    It's a comparison that doesn't even sound worth mentioning.

Similar Threads

  1. A HLV without a new rocket?
    By Commodore in forum Space Exploration
    Replies: 25
    Last Post: 2011-Aug-30, 07:52 AM
  2. Ice Rocket
    By mike alexander in forum Space/Astronomy Questions and Answers
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 2011-Jun-08, 07:37 PM
  3. how can a rocket run at 102%?
    By tofu in forum Space Exploration
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 2007-Sep-10, 03:47 PM
  4. Rocket Man
    By SkepticJ in forum Small Media at Large
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 2007-Feb-19, 08:41 AM
  5. It Is Rocket Science
    By RBG in forum Space Exploration
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 2006-Jul-05, 09:40 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
here
The forum is sponsored in-part by: