Re: Sharing Models, was: Intestinal Fortitude

From: Adrian Tymes (
Date: Fri Mar 16 2001 - 23:12:19 MST

Spike Jones wrote:
> PS hey, heres a thing for you rocket fans to be thinking about,
> an idea I had today. A lot of us whine about the space shuttle,
> how expensive it is, etc, but look at it this way. Suppose you
> are a rocket designer and you are given the same set of requirements
> the shuttle designers were given in 1965. To orbit with 30 tons,
> 18.5 meters by 4.8 cylindrical, *return to earth with 10 tons*
> and land with dignity. What would it look like? spike

Using 1965 tech, I assume? Much the same, but fully RLV - no external
tanks or external solid boosters. Bolt down the wires more firmly, or
possibly draw insulated electric leads on the walls of the wire
conduits instead so they won't come loose or abrade as much. Don't
rely on explosive bolts so much, except maybe as emergency backups.
Put the assembly/loading hangar closer to the launch pad, or make the
launch crawler faster...or equip the launch gantry with a crane, and
let the shuttle be towed horizontally on its landing gear to (and, if
necessary, from) the launch pad. Design for maintenance access, like
commercial-production cars and planes.

They say you can't argue with success. I say you can improve on it.

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