Re: SPACE: Beyond Apollo

From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Mon Apr 17 2000 - 01:37:31 MDT

On Saturday, April 15, 2000 6:34 AM Robert Bradbury
> Regarding the Saturn 5 plans:
> > Maybe an FOIA search might uncover something???
> I know that I've read something about this but I can't remember
> whether it was one of Zubrin's books (Case for Mars?), or
> perhaps something out of the Starflight Handbook, or other
> papers by Mallove & Matloff et al. But it has been researched
> to some degree, the problem is finding out who has the most
> recent info. This was the mid-'60's so there have to be a
> large number of individuals who actually worked on designing
> and building Saturn 5's who are still alive and kicking.

It might be a start. If I had the money and time, I'd try to do the

> Related to this, given modern day CAD tools and the fact that you
> know the Saturn 5 worked, how much of a reduction over the original
> effort do you think it would be to take to reproduce the engineering
> part of the job? 50% less? 90% less? What fraction of the Apollo
> effort went into designing the Saturn 5 and getting it to actually
> work?

I don't know, though I reckon it would be less than 100%.:)

> According to a paper by O'Neill on my desk, in 1975 dollars, the
> cost of Apollo was $39 billion, space shuttle development was
> $5-8 billion and advanced lift vehicle development was estimated(?)
> at $8-25 billion.

That's $39 billion we don't have to spend again. Overall, I prefer the
Saturn V to the Shuttle because you don't have to worry about reuse. The
goal should be to make it cheap and reliable -- not to make it reusable as
an end in itself.

> > Sad but true in a lot of places, but I still think this would be easier
> > do than making a whole new launch system.
> I would have to think though, that scaling up the Arienne 5 or
> getting the Energia to be more reliable would be a cheaper approach
> than recreating the Saturn 5.

I've nothing against using proven Soviet and Russian designs, but the Ariane
5 has a habit of blowing up.:@ Plus, it's a very high end launch system.

Daniel Ust

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