SpaceX Tuesday...

SpaceX Tuesday...

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Beati Dogu

7,369 posts

104 months

Saturday 17th April
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SpaceX's latest image shows the Starship with a few outward changes.




The landing rockets are smaller and more numerous than on the previous render. They're in a ring just below the solar panels, which have themselves been moved from the nose.





It now has proper extending legs that keep the base clear of the ground.



Edited by Beati Dogu on Saturday 17th April 02:03

craig_m67

882 posts

153 months

Saturday 17th April
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Do you have a link to the renders, info?

xeny

1,625 posts

43 months

Saturday 17th April
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It strikes me that if this all goes ahead, with reusable Starship tankers/HLS and boosters used in combination with expendable SLS and Orion, the contrast in living volume and cost is going to make "Old Space" look ridiculous.

Given Congress' enthusiasm for funding SLS, how are they going to avoid this making them look stupid?

RizzoTheRat

20,612 posts

157 months

Saturday 17th April
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Eric Mc said:
I'm struggling to see how a Starship sitting on the surface of the moon can be used to deliver heavy gear like rovers, habitats and processing plants..
Given that they currently seem to consider them cheap and disposable, I wonder if they'd build some equipment in to a starship and leave it permanently on the moon? Probably a bit awkward as the payload is at the top though.

The landing gear on those renders is a fair bit wider than standard, but it still doesn't look like it would cope with uneven terrain that well, I assume they'd have some kind of self levelling system though.


rxe

4,877 posts

68 months

Saturday 17th April
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Eric Mc said:
I'm struggling to see how a Starship sitting on the surface of the moon can be used to deliver heavy gear like rovers, habitats and processing plants.

The Blue Origin lander is basically a large, flat, platform fitted with derricks which can carry anything and the derricks used to lower the cargo onto the surface.

I haven't seen how SpaceX plan to use the Starship in this role.
I would imagine that the configuration of a moon Starship is very different. Once it is up there, presumably they’d just use it as a ferry between Earth and the moon, it will never do Earth re-entry, so can be much lighter. Given that the engines are half way up, would the configuration be “fuel at the front, payload at the back”? Once you’ve got that configuration, making the back cylinder openable is not that hard, and given that the gravity on the moon is not a big deal, a lightweight arm + winch could be used to get anything out. They could use it for habitation I suppose, but I would guess that the long term plan would be to dig habitats into the ground for radiation protection.

annodomini2

6,136 posts

216 months

Saturday 17th April
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rxe said:
Eric Mc said:
I'm struggling to see how a Starship sitting on the surface of the moon can be used to deliver heavy gear like rovers, habitats and processing plants.

The Blue Origin lander is basically a large, flat, platform fitted with derricks which can carry anything and the derricks used to lower the cargo onto the surface.

I haven't seen how SpaceX plan to use the Starship in this role.
I would imagine that the configuration of a moon Starship is very different. Once it is up there, presumably they’d just use it as a ferry between Earth and the moon, it will never do Earth re-entry, so can be much lighter. Given that the engines are half way up, would the configuration be “fuel at the front, payload at the back”? Once you’ve got that configuration, making the back cylinder openable is not that hard, and given that the gravity on the moon is not a big deal, a lightweight arm + winch could be used to get anything out. They could use it for habitation I suppose, but I would guess that the long term plan would be to dig habitats into the ground for radiation protection.
It's intended to transition between lunar surface and lunar orbit, they are putting a small space station around the moon known as lunar gateway.

Which SpaceX will also launch.

The other factor in the SpaceX design is that it's intended to be fully reusable.

Unlike the others, which discard various bits to allow their operation.

This is likely to be one of the main factors in the cost of the contract as they only have to fly fuel, maybe spare parts, rather than sending another space craft.

Flooble

2,973 posts

65 months

Saturday 17th April
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Eric Mc said:
I'm struggling to see how a Starship sitting on the surface of the moon can be used to deliver heavy gear like rovers, habitats and processing plants.

The Blue Origin lander is basically a large, flat, platform fitted with derricks which can carry anything and the derricks used to lower the cargo onto the surface.

I haven't seen how SpaceX plan to use the Starship in this role.
It's easy to forget the size and mass of the Starship. They will have a lot of mass at the bottom (6 Raptors, ~ 9 tonnes just for engines let alone plumbing & legs) so lowering relatively heavy items from the top should not take them outside the centre of gravity. Inside the payload bay of the Starship you can still have a large flat platform with a crane attached, the only real difference is you'll have to lower the items from much higher up and through a door, the size of which isn't totally clear form the render (but "normal" Starship allows for 22 metres by 8 metres).

Vehicles for use on the Moon don't have to be particularly heavy either - the Apollo Lunar Rovers were barely quarter of a tonne, about the same as the average American.

When you look at the astronauts at the bottom of the Render, it becomes clearer just how big the door they have depicted actually is - it looks to be about two astronauts high and four wide. So probably about 4 metres by 4 metres (with a very large error bar as the render isn't clear!).

That sort of size is big enough to slide a caravan out and lower it to the ground to live in smile

Or, being a tad more sensible, you could fit a Dragon capsule in the "payload bay" and still get it out through that size of door, if you wanted a quick "habitat" on the ground. You'd have to provide the capsule with power and other supplies (it can't "free fly" for long) but presumably some of the remaining load capacity could be given over to building supplies e.g. more solar panels.

Beati Dogu

7,369 posts

104 months

Saturday 17th April
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Animation of the crew/cargo system complete with sound:

https://twitter.com/harrystrangerpg/status/1383235...

smile


craig_m67 said:
Do you have a link to the renders, info?
It’s on the SpaceX website now:

https://www.spacex.com/updates/starship-moon-annou...

Edited by Beati Dogu on Saturday 17th April 11:10

RizzoTheRat

20,612 posts

157 months

Saturday 17th April
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Beati Dogu said:
Animation of the crew/cargo system complete with sound:

https://twitter.com/harrystrangerpg/status/1383235...
This being Musk, he probably has considered having it pipe that elevator muzak over thier helmet speakers when the use it rofl

Beati Dogu

7,369 posts

104 months

Saturday 17th April
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It's definitely something he'd do. SpaceX actually used that music on their fairing recovery video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oTH3mq7SsK4

I'd like the Are You Being Served theme, but perhaps that's too British. smile



Meanwhile, in Florida, they've static fired the Falcon 9 that'll take the next group of 4 astronauts to the ISS.




The Crew-2 launch is scheduled for Thursday, 22nd April at 6.11 am EDT (1.11 pm UK time).

There'll be a week or so handover before the 4 Crew-1 astronauts depart in their Dragon capsule and splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Florida.

The previous Soyuz crew (2 Russian, 1 American) landed safely back on Earth this morning.

FourWheelDrift

82,045 posts

249 months

Saturday 17th April
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RizzoTheRat said:
Beati Dogu said:
Animation of the crew/cargo system complete with sound:

https://twitter.com/harrystrangerpg/status/1383235...
This being Musk, he probably has considered having it pipe that elevator muzak over thier helmet speakers when the use it rofl
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7XlEpZttQoo

N0ddie

265 posts

130 months

Saturday 17th April
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Eric Mc said:
I'm struggling to see how a Starship sitting on the surface of the moon can be used to deliver heavy gear like rovers, habitats and processing plants.

The Blue Origin lander is basically a large, flat, platform fitted with derricks which can carry anything and the derricks used to lower the cargo onto the surface.

I haven't seen how SpaceX plan to use the Starship in this role.
Essentially the 2 other competitors (Blue Origin & Dynetics) proposals were naff. The selection document ripped Blue Origin's and Dynetics proposals a new one. It openly calls them immature and unrealistic, and don't hold any praises regarding SpaceX's proposal.

Eric Mc

114,997 posts

230 months

Saturday 17th April
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What did specific areas did they "rip" on the Blue Origin proposal?

My main problem with Blue Origin is that they have virtually no real space experience of any sort.

Einion Yrth

18,874 posts

209 months

Saturday 17th April
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Eric Mc said:
What did specific areas did they "rip" on the Blue Origin proposal?

My main problem with Blue Origin is that they have virtually no real space experience of any sort.
Well neither did Grumman when they designed the LM to be fair; turned out a pretty decent machine in the end though.

Dog Star

12,422 posts

133 months

Saturday 17th April
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This decision for the lunar landing system and SpaceX is without doubt the right one.

However I’m quite amused by this - the Gateway. Basically all ferried to lunar orbit (built by?) SpaceX. Lunar lander: SpaceX starship lunar variant.

So there are these whopping great big Starships, unmanned and I would imagine by then manned, plying the route between earth and moon. Fabulous, huge, future visions of space travel, huge interiors, panoramic windows. You get the picture.

But to actually get to the lander/gateway in lunar orbit they have to take the hugely wasteful SLS and travel in a (relatively) tiny Orion capsule and st in a plastic bag.

At some point someone has got to just knock this SLS on the head. It’s expensive, wasteful, outmoded and totally outclassed.

hidetheelephants

16,989 posts

158 months

Saturday 17th April
quotequote all
Einion Yrth said:
Eric Mc said:
What did specific areas did they "rip" on the Blue Origin proposal?

My main problem with Blue Origin is that they have virtually no real space experience of any sort.
Well neither did Grumman when they designed the LM to be fair; turned out a pretty decent machine in the end though.
No-one knew much about space travel and heehaw about landing on the moon in 1962.
Dog Star said:
Travel in a (relatively) tiny Orion capsule and st in a plastic bag.
Strapline for the brochure? hehe

eharding

11,616 posts

249 months

Saturday 17th April
quotequote all
hidetheelephants said:
Dog Star said:
Travel in a (relatively) tiny Orion capsule and st in a plastic bag.
Strapline for the brochure? hehe
They could call it OrionAir, and charge £20 you for the plastic bag, plus another £20 to dispose of it afterwards.

annodomini2

6,136 posts

216 months

Saturday 17th April
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N0ddie said:
Eric Mc said:
I'm struggling to see how a Starship sitting on the surface of the moon can be used to deliver heavy gear like rovers, habitats and processing plants.

The Blue Origin lander is basically a large, flat, platform fitted with derricks which can carry anything and the derricks used to lower the cargo onto the surface.

I haven't seen how SpaceX plan to use the Starship in this role.
Essentially the 2 other competitors (Blue Origin & Dynetics) proposals were naff. The selection document ripped Blue Origin's and Dynetics proposals a new one. It openly calls them immature and unrealistic, and don't hold any praises regarding SpaceX's proposal.
The decision is purely financial, NASA don't have the funds to pay any of them, SpaceX have basically been amiable to NASA's financial position and are more willing to wait for payment.

hyphen

19,728 posts

55 months

Saturday 17th April
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N0ddie said:
Essentially the 2 other competitors (Blue Origin & Dynetics) proposals were naff. The selection document ripped Blue Origin's and Dynetics proposals a new one. It openly calls them immature and unrealistic, and don't hold any praises regarding SpaceX's proposal.
It wasn't Blue Origin. It was a consortium of known respected names.

The BBC article says that price was the deciding factor- SpaceX's bid was lower by a wide margin. So either SpaceX are hugely more efficient, or have made a break-even/low margin bid that could bite them if things don't go to plan.

As the BBC article also says, Nasa were refused the budget to hire two partners and make them compete as Nasa would normally do, and Nasa rather strangely announced the winner prior to Biden appointing a new head of NASA. So suggests politics at play too.

Edited by hyphen on Saturday 17th April 21:58

MartG

17,735 posts

169 months

Saturday 17th April
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Scott Manley says both other bidders had issues:

Blue Origin wanted payment in advance for work, counter to one of the requirements of the RFP

Dynetics failed on the requirement for future growth, as their proposal was already too heavy and would need lightening to meet the basic mission requirements.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GuSM_-Aw5HM