Re: Launch Technology

From: Ken Clements (
Date: Mon Jan 22 2001 - 10:40:57 MST

Spike, I am somewhat surprised to read what you wrote below after all the years
we have been thinking about the expected impact of molecular design on rocket
fuel. I guess you consider all that outside of "standard chemical rockets." I
fully expect someone to design solid fuel rockets that are one big crystal that
has been constructed to have a supervelocity anisotropic burn characteristic.
In this kind of design the molecular reaction mass is accelerated in nearly
only one direction when the chemical bonds are broken. This is something like
the old gag gift of the can of spring "snakes" that come spraying out when you
open it.

Also, "way" cheaper could be achieved now if we had a "way way" cheaper source
of energy so as to drive the cost of making rocket fuel "way" down.


Spike Jones wrote:

> Ja. There are no great breakthrus in our future for standard
> chemical rockets. No one tomorrow is gonna discover a
> previously unknown chemical that will get us to orbit way
> cheaper than now. In the area of chemical rockets, the
> only development we can look forward to is economies
> of scale by making a lot of them.

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