Does Elon's Musk stink?

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thoreau
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by thoreau » 04 Apr 2017, 20:44

As libertarians, aren't we obligated to believe in billionaires who say that they have the solution to our transportation problems?
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Warren » 05 Apr 2017, 01:55

thoreau wrote:As libertarians, aren't we obligated to believe in billionaires who say that they have the solution to our transportation problems?
I'm going to have to ask for your monocle.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Aresen » 05 Dec 2017, 12:24

I'll just leave this here:

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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Warren » 15 Dec 2017, 10:45

NASA is riding on Space X. Now that they're taking fares, they could change their name to Space Uber... Spuber.
I like it!
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Kolohe » 06 Feb 2018, 15:26

They're about to launch a tesla into space


eta, cmon guys cheering in the background of the webcast, act like you've been there before.
when you wake up as the queen of the n=1 kingdom and mount your steed non sequiturius, do you look out upon all you survey and think “damn, it feels good to be a green idea sleeping furiously?" - dhex

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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Highway » 06 Feb 2018, 16:00

Yeah, but that's all peanut gallery, isn't it? So it's like any sports fans.

Are they planning on recovering the side boosters as well as the core for those?
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Mo » 06 Feb 2018, 16:01

They did.
his voice is so soothing, but why do conspiracy nuts always sound like Batman and Robin solving one of Riddler's puzzles out loud? - fod

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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Warren » 06 Feb 2018, 16:03

The booster landing was impressive. Though I still can't wrap my head around retro rockets as the best landing technique.
Any word on whether they got the core?
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Kolohe » 06 Feb 2018, 16:04

That may have been the only two they did. (I only realized about a second before the hosts called it out that the double shot from the booster was actually a shot from each individual booster. The lineup symetry was remarkable)
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Sandy » 06 Feb 2018, 16:19

They tried for core, but no word yet on whether it landed on the robobarge. I'm guessing it crashed, based on the radio silence.

The two boosters landing simultaneously was The Future.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Jasper » 06 Feb 2018, 16:23

The boosters landing side by side was amazing.

Seems odd they wouldn't have more cameras on the chase ships for the drone pad.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Warren » 06 Feb 2018, 16:30

Jasper wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 16:23
The boosters landing side by side was amazing.

Seems odd they wouldn't have more cameras on the chase ships for the drone pad.
Ships? Plural?
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Kolohe » 06 Feb 2018, 16:48

During the countdown to the launch, on the live stream, one wide shot (prob from aerial drone, but maybe stock footage) showed two tug-sized boats station keeping off the robo landing pad ship.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Mo » 06 Feb 2018, 16:59

Sandy wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 16:19
They tried for core, but no word yet on whether it landed on the robobarge. I'm guessing it crashed, based on the radio silence.

The two boosters landing simultaneously was The Future.
his voice is so soothing, but why do conspiracy nuts always sound like Batman and Robin solving one of Riddler's puzzles out loud? - fod

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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Warren » 06 Feb 2018, 17:11

Kolohe wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 16:48
During the countdown to the launch, on the live stream, one wide shot (prob from aerial drone, but maybe stock footage) showed two tug-sized boats station keeping off the robo landing pad ship.
Huh. There's no reason to have lost feed from them.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Eric the .5b » 06 Feb 2018, 18:37

Jasper wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 16:23
The boosters landing side by side was amazing.
I'm still amazed that the state of the art is, "No, really, landing rockets on their tails like a 50s SF book cover? We can totally do that."
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Warren » 06 Feb 2018, 18:39

Eric the .5b wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 18:37
Jasper wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 16:23
The boosters landing side by side was amazing.
I'm still amazed that the state of the art is, "No, really, landing rockets on their tails like a 50s SF book cover? We can totally do that."
It's not so much that we can do that, as it is "We decided that's the best way to do it".
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by lunchstealer » 06 Feb 2018, 18:48

Warren wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 18:39
Eric the .5b wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 18:37
Jasper wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 16:23
The boosters landing side by side was amazing.
I'm still amazed that the state of the art is, "No, really, landing rockets on their tails like a 50s SF book cover? We can totally do that."
It's not so much that we can do that, as it is "We decided that's the best way to do it".
Well, all you have to do is carry extra fuel (OK not trivial) processors for controlling descent, and some basic landing gear, whereas other landing methods require more extensive systems. I mean, we've done parachutes for the SRBs, and great big wing and airplane thing for the rest of the Shuttle.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Kolohe » 06 Feb 2018, 18:52

It seems plausible to me that Musk's way could be cheaper, because of less you have overhaul between launches i.e. the shuttle SRBs landing in seawater after every use.
when you wake up as the queen of the n=1 kingdom and mount your steed non sequiturius, do you look out upon all you survey and think “damn, it feels good to be a green idea sleeping furiously?" - dhex

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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Eric the .5b » 06 Feb 2018, 19:01

Kolohe wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 18:52
It seems plausible to me that Musk's way could be cheaper, because of less you have overhaul between launches i.e. the shuttle SRBs landing in seawater after every use.
Certainly; I assume they have decent reasons for doing it.

I don't assume they're utterly right, but finding out is the point of trying new approaches. I just never expected this one.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Highway » 06 Feb 2018, 19:01

lunchstealer wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 18:48
Warren wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 18:39
Eric the .5b wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 18:37
Jasper wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 16:23
The boosters landing side by side was amazing.
I'm still amazed that the state of the art is, "No, really, landing rockets on their tails like a 50s SF book cover? We can totally do that."
It's not so much that we can do that, as it is "We decided that's the best way to do it".
Well, all you have to do is carry extra fuel (OK not trivial) processors for controlling descent, and some basic landing gear, whereas other landing methods require more extensive systems. I mean, we've done parachutes for the SRBs, and great big wing and airplane thing for the rest of the Shuttle.
It's not necessarily "the" best way, but they decided it's the best way that they could engineer right now (they started out with the "parachutes and splashdowns" paradigm, and decided fairly quickly that that was not the way to go) . And really, for as short as the burns are on the landing, you really wonder how much "extra" fuel they have to carry. And even if it's the widely reported "30% of lift capacity", remember that the Falcon 9 has gone from a 10-ton lift capacity to a 23 ton lift capacity with just internal improvements to the boosters. There's probably been some increase in the amount of fuel required to whoa it down from higher speeds as they access more orbits, but it's not like the rocket has gotten commensurately heavier with the increase in payload capacity.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Aresen » 06 Feb 2018, 19:18

I am skeptical that the powered landing of the Falcon rockets will save money.
1) As others have said, the extra fuel to power the landing has to be carried on the liftoff, adding to the weight.
2) The rocket, fuel tanks and structural supports all have to be larger to carry the extra weight and thus weigh more themselves, compounding your weight problem.
3) The manufacturing of the rocket has to be more robust to withstand the greater stresses and the prolonged stress due the extra run time.
4) After each launch, the rockets are going to need extensive overhaul to make them ready to go again. This will be a significant fraction of the original cost of manufacture. (Ex recto, I'd be surprised if the cost of the overhaul was under 40% of the original cost.)
5) Related to 4): How many launch cycles would a rocket be good for? [Would you buy a used rocket from Elon Musk?]
6) The recovery platforms are going to be more expensive than the recovery of a disposable booster in terms of construction, maintenance and operation.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Fin Fang Foom » 06 Feb 2018, 20:07

Sure "Life on Mars" is a better song, but Musk needs to show a little respect and play Radar Rider.
Last edited by Fin Fang Foom on 06 Feb 2018, 20:54, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Highway » 06 Feb 2018, 20:10

Aresen wrote:
06 Feb 2018, 19:18
I am skeptical that the powered landing of the Falcon rockets will save money.
1) As others have said, the extra fuel to power the landing has to be carried on the liftoff, adding to the weight.
2) The rocket, fuel tanks and structural supports all have to be larger to carry the extra weight and thus weigh more themselves, compounding your weight problem.
3) The manufacturing of the rocket has to be more robust to withstand the greater stresses and the prolonged stress due the extra run time.
4) After each launch, the rockets are going to need extensive overhaul to make them ready to go again. This will be a significant fraction of the original cost of manufacture. (Ex recto, I'd be surprised if the cost of the overhaul was under 40% of the original cost.)
5) Related to 4): How many launch cycles would a rocket be good for? [Would you buy a used rocket from Elon Musk?]
6) The recovery platforms are going to be more expensive than the recovery of a disposable booster in terms of construction, maintenance and operation.
You can be skeptical, but the prices that SpaceX is charging for launches are significantly cheaper than United Launch Alliance's costs. All-up costs of around 100 million dollars for a military launch on SpaceX, versus 420+ million on ULA. They've induced ULA to cut prices on Atlas launches to 100 million to try to keep market share (and those are comparable to a Falcon 9 launch, which SpaceX lists as a 62 million dollar cost).

I would imagine that a lot of your additional costs aren't as much as you think. For instance, it's not like they'd make the rocket significantly cheaper or less substantial if they weren't trying to recover it. It would just have a higher rated lift capacity. So there's little marginal cost to making it reusable from a "we need a bigger rocket". The rocket is the rocket. And if the rocket is not consuming itself during the launches, then there may not be much in the way of refurbishment needed. This is especially true if they can recover it dry. And even if they cost of the overhaul was 50%, and they could only use it one more time (which apparently has not been the case), then you're getting two launches for 150% of the price of 1 launch, so that's already a significant cost savings. If they can continue to launch the same rocket at a 50% cost saving, it's a 50% cost saving. That's huge. But I have a feeling that they're probably 1) cheaper than that to refurbish, and 2) cheaper in the first place.
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Re: Does Elon's Musk stink?

Post by Aresen » 06 Feb 2018, 22:07

Time will tell. I don't expect the cost of a visit to the Mare Tranquillitatis Resort is ever going to be in my price range.

TBS, a million year from now, when kittens replace us as the dominant life form in the solar system, I wonder what they are going to think when they find a Tesla orbiting Mars.
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