Author Topic: Starship!  (Read 3873 times)

Offline Zakalwe

  • Uranus
  • ****
  • Posts: 1518
Re: Starship!
« Reply #120 on: December 31, 2020, 04:38:25 AM »
Oh, and if there was any doubt that Elon is quite, quite mad...

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1344327757916868608
Quote
We’re going to try to catch the Super Heavy Booster with the launch tower arm, using the grid fins to take the load
:o

That'll make for an interesting YouTube stream!  :o
"The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' " - Isaac Asimov

Offline bknight

  • Neptune
  • ****
  • Posts: 2973
Re: Starship!
« Reply #121 on: December 31, 2020, 02:08:33 PM »
Oh, and if there was any doubt that Elon is quite, quite mad...

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1344327757916868608
Quote
We’re going to try to catch the Super Heavy Booster with the launch tower arm, using the grid fins to take the load
:o

There are quite a lot of challenges, but it isn't  impossible to slow a ship to landing speed and then latch a stand alone platfom then gently lower to the "ground"
Truth needs no defense.  Nobody can take those footsteps I made on the surface of the moon away from me.
Eugene Cernan

Offline molesworth

  • Mars
  • ***
  • Posts: 275
  • the curse of st custards
Re: Starship!
« Reply #122 on: December 31, 2020, 07:57:29 PM »
Oh, and if there was any doubt that Elon is quite, quite mad...

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1344327757916868608
Quote
We’re going to try to catch the Super Heavy Booster with the launch tower arm, using the grid fins to take the load
:o

There are quite a lot of challenges, but it isn't  impossible to slow a ship to landing speed and then latch a stand alone platfom then gently lower to the "ground"
The fine art of understatement...  ;D
Days spent at sea are not deducted from one's allotted span - Phoenician proverb

Offline Peter B

  • Saturn
  • ****
  • Posts: 1068
Re: Starship!
« Reply #123 on: December 31, 2020, 08:27:52 PM »
Oh, and if there was any doubt that Elon is quite, quite mad...

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1344327757916868608
Quote
We’re going to try to catch the Super Heavy Booster with the launch tower arm, using the grid fins to take the load
:o

Any illustrations of exactly what he has in mind?

Offline raven

  • Uranus
  • ****
  • Posts: 1589
Re: Starship!
« Reply #124 on: December 31, 2020, 11:13:58 PM »
Maybe I'm too nice to the guy, but a lot of the stuff he comes up with sounds like public spitballing, made public to keep the interest high and the conversation flowing.

Offline JayUtah

  • Neptune
  • ****
  • Posts: 3680
    • Clavius
Re: Starship!
« Reply #125 on: January 01, 2021, 12:24:12 AM »
Maybe I'm too nice to the guy, but a lot of the stuff he comes up with sounds like public spitballing, made public to keep the interest high and the conversation flowing.

There's no question Elon Musk has revitalized enthusiasm for U.S. space enterprise.  He doesn't have shareholders or a board of directors at SpaceX to answer to, so he can play a unique role in that respect even if a substantial part of it is Harold Hill theatrics.  The pre-existing space infrastructure wasn't largely concerned with public interest or enthusiasm.  It didn't need it.  And I don't mean that arrogantly; we knew who our customers were and they knew who we were, and no one needed to advertise during the Superbowl.  Capturing the imagination of the American public was only a small part of the business model, so you got only the most basic public outreach efforts.

The problem is that the enthusiasm quickly became partisan.  It was characterized as SpaceX succeeding where other companies failed due to incompetence and lazy stagnation, which wasn't especially fair.  This doesn't mean everyone is entitled to share in the glory of one company's conspicuous innovation.  But a more properly directed surge in public enthusiasm could have led to more aggressive changes in the NASA funding model and a more credible change in marketing posture among existing companies to appeal differently to corporate customers.  So keeping the conversation flowing doesn't have to be rabidly adversarial.  Inevitably someone will say, "That's so bold!  Why isn't ULA thinking of similar things?"
"Facts are stubborn things." --John Adams

Offline cjameshuff

  • Mars
  • ***
  • Posts: 342
Re: Starship!
« Reply #126 on: January 01, 2021, 06:50:48 PM »
I just skimmed the video of Starship assembly, so everyone please forgive me if I'm misrepresenting it.  But it looked like some parts of assembly and stacking were being done using general-purpose construction equipment.  Naturally almost none of that would be acceptable in the development of any other crewed space vehicle, if done under the auspices of a NASA contract to do so.

Genuine question... why?

If a $5 million "general purpose" crane meets and exceeds all the specifications required to do the job, why is it necessary to design, build or buy a $50 million "special purpose" crane to do the exact same job?

Special-purpose equipment may be designed to make the process safer or more efficient, or to bake in a known level of reliability.  A general-purpose mobile crane can handle a lot of different tasks, but may not have a level of precision that a special-purpose crane can provide.

But...

SpaceX’s answer appears to be to tailor their design and process to accommodate commercial equipment rather than vice versa.

Note that the big expensive SLS Vertical Assembly Center (which had to be rebuilt after they got it crooked the first time) didn't keep them from dropping a tank dome.

SpaceX isn't entirely avoiding custom equipment. They're building a gantry crane into the building they're constructing for putting together the booster, and will probably go back and install similar cranes elsewhere. They just didn't move forward with the crane construction until they had actual experience stacking Starship components to tell them what would be most useful. Their approach could be summarized as "try it and see what we really need", adding automation and special fixtures as needed. Musk seems to be very carefully avoiding the mistakes he made at Tesla with the Model 3, like the "fluff bot" he's mentioned that gave them so much trouble handling fiberglass mats which it turned out could be eliminated entirely from the design.

Offline smartcooky

  • Uranus
  • ****
  • Posts: 1846
Re: Starship!
« Reply #127 on: January 02, 2021, 02:24:25 PM »
Oh, and if there was any doubt that Elon is quite, quite mad...

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1344327757916868608
Quote
We’re going to try to catch the Super Heavy Booster with the launch tower arm, using the grid fins to take the load
:o

Any illustrations of exactly what he has in mind?


Well, here is Scott Manley's take on catching boosters...

► What you can assert without evidence, I can dismiss without evidence
► When you argue with idiots you risk being dragged down to their level and beaten with experience.
► Conspiracism is a shortcut to the illusion of erudition