Author Topic: The Reaction Engines Skylon/SABRE Master Thread (6)  (Read 120394 times)

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #20 on: 08/05/2016 12:30 AM »
I sympathize with your frustration, because it is such an a**-backwards business plan. (if accurate) If they have any interest in bringing Skylon to reality, REL needs to LEAD this consortium, not hope that someone else will do it. They need to become the prime contractor.
In REL's org chart there is a thing called "Skylon Enterprises. " I'll be watching that space.

REL are quite clear that the skillset for building a large aircraft is very different than that for building engines for such a vehicle.  They don't expect to lead that group, but they do expect to have a lot of input to it.

I think it's interesting that their position has moved from just the precooler (and maybe some other heat exchangers) to saying "Yes, we can do the whole engine, it's not beyond our resources"

But the fact remains people buy Airbuses, Boeings, Cessnas, Ariane's and F9, not P&W's, Rolls Royces, Lycomings, Vulcains or Merlins.   :(
I've never seen any evidence at all of any potential customer with the financial resources to matter having any interest in such a "pre-agreement".
Nice qualification of you disagreement. In fact it's basically how Steve Jobs bankrolled the Apple II and roughly how most  Boeings and Airbuses have had their finance raised for them.

What actually makes it difficult is the fact the organisation that would actively deal with the customers is not the final recipient of the money, and indeed that body would not exist in its final form (how could it, as those pledges would be a key part of bringing it into existence).   :(
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And, even if they did by some miracle get those pre-agreements in place, that doesn't automatically mean they'd get development funding because the pre-agreements only address market risk, not development risk.  If I go around and get 100 people to agree to buy my anti-gravity device if it works, that doesn't mean I'll get funding because there's still the substantial risk that I can't actually make an anti-gravity device to fulful the terms of the pre-agreements.
As I and others have  noted smart VC's have never invested in ideas, but in the teams behind them.

Your antigravity team would appear to be someone with no knowledge of physics, no working theory to make it happen and no prototype to show you even have the skills to make it if you wanted to.

So yes I can see you'd have a lot of trouble raising a cent.

REL OTOH has a solid track record of developing various parts of their concept. You'll only see them mentioned in passing but they indicate a substantial of projects completed and risks retired.

I'd suggest that's a lot more from day one that quite a few Silicon Valley startups have brought to the table. Mostly a belief that somehow they can make it work before the money runs out.

The original value proposition of Skylon was versus the old state-of-the-art: expensive, expendable launch vehicles.  Now, the state of the art is changing.  As both Blue Origin and SpaceX move closer to inexpensive, reusable launch vehicles,
That's a reusable sub-orbital in Blue's case and a semi reusable vehicle in SX's case. The distinctions have serious implications on economics.
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it erodes the value proposition of Skylon in comparison.  It's one thing to say they want to spend $16 billion to produce a system that reduces launch costs from $250 million per launch to $5 million per launch.  It's a harder sell if the reduction is from $60 million to $5 million.  And even harder when the reduction is from $40 million, then $20 million, and so on.
If that was all Skylon offers you'd be right, but that ignores it's life expectancy, which will be demonstrated, not guesse, it's launch reliability (and the only known semi reusable vehicle that's actually flown had a reliability of about 1 in 36, with root cause failures in the expendable or refurbished-to-the-point-of-being-rebuilt parts of the design)
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On the other hand, having other competitors moving toward a low-cost launch system could prove and expand the market, giving investors confidence to invest in REL, particularly if Europe is afraid of the new low-cost launchers and wants its own alternative.

So, which is the bigger effect?  My opinion is that the changes in the market from Blue Origin and SpaceX will have much more of a negative effect on REL than a positive effect.
We keep hearing about a how F9SR will change the market but none have launched so far and the market has to expand radically to offset the revue loss from the lower prices. My instinct is those prices are simply not low enough to actually bring many people flocking to SX with ideas that they've just been waiting to launch. So SX has a net revenue loss. Wheather or not it loses profit as well is another matter.

Sorry but $60m is better than $120m and $30 is better still but IMHO it's simply not that much better to double (or more than double ideally) the market. It's still a shedload of money (and that's not for a comm sat launch, just to LEO) for a ticket to ride with (hopefully) a reliability record that will be one day as be demonstrated to be as good as Ariane or Atlas and a launch date at the suppliers (any suppliers) convenience, not mine.

It's quite easy to run the numbers on the economics of the ELV business and very tough to beat them. A fully reusable F9 might have done it. For whatever reason it didn't happen.

I don't see F9SR being anywhere near the breakthrough in price you seem to think it is.  :(
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline CameronD

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #21 on: 08/05/2016 12:38 AM »
The original value proposition of Skylon was versus the old state-of-the-art: expensive, expendable launch vehicles.  Now, the state of the art is changing.  As both Blue Origin and SpaceX move closer to inexpensive, reusable launch vehicles, it erodes the value proposition of Skylon in comparison.  It's one thing to say they want to spend $16 billion to produce a system that reduces launch costs from $250 million per launch to $5 million per launch.  It's a harder sell if the reduction is from $60 million to $5 million.  And even harder when the reduction is from $40 million, then $20 million, and so on.

On the other hand, having other competitors moving toward a low-cost launch system could prove and expand the market, giving investors confidence to invest in REL, particularly if Europe is afraid of the new low-cost launchers and wants its own alternative.

So, which is the bigger effect?  My opinion is that the changes in the market from Blue Origin and SpaceX will have much more of a negative effect on REL than a positive effect.

I'd second that opinion. ..and add that as 'low-cost launch' becomes more of the norm, REL may find themselves forced onto a different course.  The SST market stagnated with the demise of Concorde, but might be somewhere REL can carve out a place to play using their SABRE engines (in mostly air-breathing mode) and a much-modified, re-purposed Skylon.
 
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline ChrisWilson68

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #22 on: 08/05/2016 04:09 AM »
I've never seen any evidence at all of any potential customer with the financial resources to matter having any interest in such a "pre-agreement".
Nice qualification of you disagreement. In fact it's basically how Steve Jobs bankrolled the Apple II and roughly how most  Boeings and Airbuses have had their finance raised for them.

Which has exactly nothing to do with my point.

My point is about Skylon in particular, not about whether people are willing to sign agreements to buy other products before they are developed.

What actually makes it difficult is the fact the organisation that would actively deal with the customers is not the final recipient of the money, and indeed that body would not exist in its final form (how could it, as those pledges would be a key part of bringing it into existence).   :(

Or, people with money just don't think Skylon is a good bet.

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And, even if they did by some miracle get those pre-agreements in place, that doesn't automatically mean they'd get development funding because the pre-agreements only address market risk, not development risk.  If I go around and get 100 people to agree to buy my anti-gravity device if it works, that doesn't mean I'll get funding because there's still the substantial risk that I can't actually make an anti-gravity device to fulful the terms of the pre-agreements.
As I and others have  noted smart VC's have never invested in ideas, but in the teams behind them.

Your antigravity team would appear to be someone with no knowledge of physics, no working theory to make it happen and no prototype to show you even have the skills to make it if you wanted to.

So yes I can see you'd have a lot of trouble raising a cent.

Again, you're not addressing my point at all.  My point is a simple one: getting pre-development purchase agreements only addresses market risk, not development risk.  Whether or not there is development risk for Skylon is not relevant to that point.  The point is just that pre-development purchase agreements aren't sufficient.

I'd suggest that's a lot more from day one that quite a few Silicon Valley startups have brought to the table. Mostly a belief that somehow they can make it work before the money runs out.

No Silicon Valley start-up has ever gone to a VC and presented a business plan that requires $16 billion in funding before the first revenue comes in and we find out if it works or not.

The original value proposition of Skylon was versus the old state-of-the-art: expensive, expendable launch vehicles.  Now, the state of the art is changing.  As both Blue Origin and SpaceX move closer to inexpensive, reusable launch vehicles,
That's a reusable sub-orbital in Blue's case and a semi reusable vehicle in SX's case. The distinctions have serious implications on economics.

I specifically asked that we avoid derailing this thread again arguing about whether SpaceX is capable of buidling a reusable second stage or not.

Can we just agree to disagree and move on?  You believe they're not capable of doing it.  Everyone else believes they chose not to for the near future but could at some point in the future much more easily than REL could build Skylon.  There.  Positions stated, nobody is going to change anyone's mind, so we can move on.

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it erodes the value proposition of Skylon in comparison.  It's one thing to say they want to spend $16 billion to produce a system that reduces launch costs from $250 million per launch to $5 million per launch.  It's a harder sell if the reduction is from $60 million to $5 million.  And even harder when the reduction is from $40 million, then $20 million, and so on.
If that was all Skylon offers you'd be right, but that ignores it's life expectancy, which will be demonstrated, not guesse,

Life expectancy for Blue Origin and SpaceX vehicles will be demonstrated, not guessed, long before Skylon will, so that's not a distinguishing characteristic of Skylon.

it's launch reliability (and the only known semi reusable vehicle that's actually flown had a reliability of about 1 in 36, with root cause failures in the expendable or refurbished-to-the-point-of-being-rebuilt parts of the design)

Are you really trying to convince anyone that Skylon is somehow likely to have better reliability than a Blue Origin or SpaceX vehicle because somehow you think the Blue Origin and SpaceX vehicles are more like that Space Shuttle than Skylon is?

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On the other hand, having other competitors moving toward a low-cost launch system could prove and expand the market, giving investors confidence to invest in REL, particularly if Europe is afraid of the new low-cost launchers and wants its own alternative.

So, which is the bigger effect?  My opinion is that the changes in the market from Blue Origin and SpaceX will have much more of a negative effect on REL than a positive effect.
We keep hearing about a how F9SR will change the market but none have launched so far

Surely if we're going to consider a world in which Skylon is actually built and meets its targets, we can consider the much, much smaller leap of Falcon 9 first stages, which already exist and which have already launched and landed successfully, eventually re-flying.

and the market has to expand radically to offset the revue loss from the lower prices. My instinct is those prices are simply not low enough to actually bring many people flocking to SX with ideas that they've just been waiting to launch. So SX has a net revenue loss. Wheather or not it loses profit as well is another matter.

For Skylon numbers to work out, the market would have to expand enormously at the $5 million price point.  I don't see how it's defensible to posit that there's so little elasticity in the market until $5 million but then suddenly at that price point there's an enormous elasticity.  Markets just don't tend to work that way.

Sorry but $60m is better than $120m and $30 is better still but IMHO it's simply not that much better to double (or more than double ideally) the market. It's still a shedload of money (and that's not for a comm sat launch, just to LEO) for a ticket to ride with (hopefully) a reliability record that will be one day as be demonstrated to be as good as Ariane or Atlas and a launch date at the suppliers (any suppliers) convenience, not mine.

There's no reason to think Skylon will have higher reliability than Blue Origin or SpaceX.  By the time Skylon flies, both of those others will have many years of experience getting those reliability rates very high.

And there's no reason that Blue Origin and SpaceX can't have some rockets sitting in the hangar ready to go at short notice, just like Skylon.

It's quite easy to run the numbers on the economics of the ELV business and very tough to beat them.

Running numbers is easy, but knowing what the market is is hard.  Skylon counts on a huge increase in launch rate.  Maybe it will happen, maybe not, but if it does, SpaceX and Blue Origin will be all over that.

A fully reusable F9 might have done it. For whatever reason it didn't happen.

It didn't yet happen.

I don't see F9SR being anywhere near the breakthrough in price you seem to think it is.  :(

It doesn't actually matter to my point.  My point is that if SpaceX and Blue Origin only ever get the price point to $60 million, that still hurts the value proposition of Skylon.  If they get it to $40 million, that hurts the value proposition even more.  $20 million even more.  At $5 million (Shotwell has told satellite operators to plan for that price point in the future), it entirely goes away.


Online guckyfan

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #23 on: 08/05/2016 05:14 AM »
It doesn't actually matter to my point.  My point is that if SpaceX and Blue Origin only ever get the price point to $60 million, that still hurts the value proposition of Skylon.  If they get it to $40 million, that hurts the value proposition even more.  $20 million even more.  At $5 million (Shotwell has told satellite operators to plan for that price point in the future), it entirely goes away.

If I was understanding john smith 19 correctly, those $5 million were refurbishment cost per flight. Add depreciation of Skylon and grund handling it will be somewhat more. Dividing $1B purchase cost by 200 flights alone will add another $5m, not counting other cost of ownership.

Offline Star One

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The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #24 on: 08/05/2016 08:01 AM »
Should be next month hopefully that we hear from the AFRL in relation to this topic from what I can remember.
« Last Edit: 08/05/2016 08:01 AM by Star One »

Offline RanulfC

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #25 on: 08/05/2016 03:51 PM »
I sympathize with your frustration, because it is such an a**-backwards business plan. (if accurate) If they have any interest in bringing Skylon to reality, REL needs to LEAD this consortium, not hope that someone else will do it. They need to become the prime contractor.

Because Aerojet, Rocketdyne, GE, Rolls-Royce, and Pratt and Whitney have shown that engine manufacturers always have to be the "prime contractor" and take the LEAD in designing and building the vehicles their engines power... :)

The business plan is in fact rather normal as long as you realize that Blue Origins and SpaceX are not in fact 'normal' business' but aberrations, (granted paradigm changing ones so far but still not how things in aerospace have been run) from the norm. This doesn't mean either is superior or inferior than the other they are in fact different in methodology and long term goals so comparisons are usually misleading to the extreme.

Main point is that REL is finally getting enough interest to allow a consortium to be built around it's engine concept to attract enough professional interest to put to rest many of the general questions on the Skylon. What remains is the biggest and most important question of does the SABRE operate as planned in a 'full-up' manner which is the focus of current work and effort. Once that question is answered then full detail work can proceed on the actual "Skylon" system that will use it.

Who's business model "wins" in the end isn't something we can predict as history shows being 'first' very often does not mean you thrive from doing so, or even survive. (Wright aircraft is a good example of this) Modes, models and planning can be effected by false assumptions, logical falsehoods, bad timing and even fickle public opinion or regulatory interference. Being one of the first to get into the lead on the 'next-big-thing' can even work for a while before a change or two in something beyond your control turns it into a dead end, (Marquardt) and you end up on the loosing end of the equation. It's far to early to call winners and losers people.

Randy
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Offline Lars-J

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #26 on: 08/05/2016 06:15 PM »
I sympathize with your frustration, because it is such an a**-backwards business plan. (if accurate) If they have any interest in bringing Skylon to reality, REL needs to LEAD this consortium, not hope that someone else will do it. They need to become the prime contractor.

Because Aerojet, Rocketdyne, GE, Rolls-Royce, and Pratt and Whitney have shown that engine manufacturers always have to be the "prime contractor" and take the LEAD in designing and building the vehicles their engines power... :)

They do have to if they hope to have any input in the design of the vehicle. Imagine SpaceX just building the Merlin 1D, and then only selling it if someone would build a Falcon 9 with it. Or an elevator builder selling blueprints for a skyscraper that someone needs to build for them. THAT is the backward part.

Nobody would bat an eye if REL was selling a neat engine that had its use for an air breathing vehicle. But instead they are trying to sell... Skylon.
« Last Edit: 08/05/2016 06:23 PM by Lars-J »

Offline Paul451

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #27 on: 08/05/2016 06:37 PM »
I sympathize with your frustration, because it is such an a**-backwards business plan. (if accurate) If they have any interest in bringing Skylon to reality, REL needs to LEAD this consortium, not hope that someone else will do it. They need to become the prime contractor.
Because Aerojet, Rocketdyne, GE, Rolls-Royce, and Pratt and Whitney have shown that engine manufacturers always have to be the "prime contractor" and take the LEAD in designing and building the vehicles their engines power...

AJ/RD/GE/etc don't propose aircraft. They are catering to an existing market. They anticipate that aircraft developers will keep developing newer models and will go looking for engines to power those models, so they try to push the technology further in the direction they think that market is going (more power, better fuel economy, lower maintenance costs) and sometimes they pick correctly and are selected, and sometimes they fail and have to scramble to catch up. But the basic aircraft design is never the engine manufacturer's. Not in large airliners, not in supersonic fighters, not cargo planes, not rocket launchers, not missiles.

Skylon is REL's design. Solely and utterly. Even moreso, it's mainly Bond's design.

There is no "market" of Skylon-type vehicle developers that is going to go looking for a suitable engine to power their future designs. Skylon is REL, REL is Skylon.

There's no comparison with engine companies. Hence this continual reference to conventional aircraft development makes no sense.

[In fact, the only time REL would be acting like a conventional engine company is with the proposal for LAPCAT and the 2STO proposal from the USAF.]

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #28 on: 08/07/2016 02:08 PM »
Which has exactly nothing to do with my point.
I'll deal with it more directly then. Why exactly would you expect to know? Do you have access to REL's internal paperwork?  I would suggest that "because I've not heard it" is not really proof of anything. Perhaps you weren't listening?
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Or, people with money just don't think Skylon is a good bet.
Which is just your first opinion repeated.
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Again, you're not addressing my point at all.  My point is a simple one: getting pre-development purchase agreements only addresses market risk, not development risk.  Whether or not there is development risk for Skylon is not relevant to that point.  The point is just that pre-development purchase agreements aren't sufficient.
I addressed exactly your point. pre-developmet purchase agreements address market risk. Study of REL's detailed track record would address their development risk.

Every large project has a development risks. Yes having put in a shed load of money it may prove impossible to make work.

OTOH Theranos demonstrated you could get a shedload of money, run for a decade and still not deliver a working product. 

You post like you understand these matters but you don't seem to.
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No Silicon Valley start-up has ever gone to a VC and presented a business plan that requires $16 billion in funding before the first revenue comes in and we find out if it works or not.
Such deep insight into REL's business plan. Do you work for them?  :)

In reality REL's plan has always been expected to have money released in tranches based on performance to targets. In reality once the consortium is up and running and Skylon is into it's development I'd expect some of those pre-sales agreements, based on actual progress to date, to turn into the first stage of an actual sale, especially if it gives them priority.
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I specifically asked that we avoid derailing this thread again arguing about whether SpaceX is capable of buidling a reusable second stage or not.
Perhaps you should read what I wrote instead of what you think I wrote?

You want to talk about now. Now is the F9SR.  Now is throwing away the upper stage on every launch. 

Later SX promise that BFR will be fully reusable. That should lower costs to them but will it lower prices? Only if all the payload is used.  That will give either a Shuttle sized rideshare problem or you'll want a single massive payload. That gives you the SLS payload problem. Who has a MW sized nuclear  reactor, or 15m telesope they want to launch?
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Are you really trying to convince anyone that Skylon is somehow likely to have better reliability than a Blue Origin or SpaceX vehicle because somehow you think the Blue Origin and SpaceX vehicles are more like that Space Shuttle than Skylon is?
What they are most like is a VTO ELV. Atlas V has demonstrate an unbroken list of 50+  launches and Ariane 5 64. so in principle you could have done all of them with the same 1st stage (certainly the Ariane flights with the same core, not sure about the Atlas V).

But Shuttle is the only vehicle which was designed for reuse and the vehicle was not a payload during launch. It failed at roughly 1 in 65 and the root cause was either the fully expendable parts or the heavily rebuilt parts, not the parts designed (mostly) for reuse.

So ELV's can be built with good launch reliability. Being able to study the actual damage to the F9 first stage can help improved the reliability of the first stage, but nothing about that of the upper stage.

All these designs have some things in common.  They have no intact abort option and for the ELV's "abort to orbit" is the best you can hope for as they have no down mass capability.

Skylon has no mission critical separation events to LEO and is designed to cope with a main engine fail. None of these vehicles could dump propellant and return to base. Skylon can, abort to a down range site or abort to orbit. It is also designed with full payload still on board. 

TL:DR  No.
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For Skylon numbers to work out, the market would have to expand enormously at the $5 million price point.  I don't see how it's defensible to posit that there's so little elasticity in the market until $5 million but then suddenly at that price point there's an enormous elasticity.  Markets just don't tend to work that way.
And you'd be wrong. What needs to happen is that there have to be people who want to own a vehicle, not a ticket to ride, and have the ability to launch a payload on their schedule, not a supplier in another country years in the future.
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There's no reason to think Skylon will have higher reliability than Blue Origin or SpaceX.  By the time Skylon flies, both of those others will have many years of experience getting those reliability rates very high.
There's a big difference between something that can eventually be made reliable and something that's reliable because what makes the first item unreliable (2nd stage separation, 2nd stage ignition, 2nd is always flying for the first, and only time, in its flight history) simply does not exist in the 2nd design.
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And there's no reason that Blue Origin and SpaceX can't have some rockets sitting in the hangar ready to go at short notice, just like Skylon.
The fact they are Blue's and SX hangars would speak volumes about the problem.
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Running numbers is easy, but knowing what the market is is hard.  Skylon counts on a huge increase in launch rate.
Again it does not. REL count on people wanting to own a vehicle not a (maybe) ticket to ride. They count on people wanting to own an asset they can resell, not a launch contract. They count on people wanting to launch on demand on a time scale of days, not months and they count on people who want to control their launch, not be controlled by their launch services provider.

Expanding the market is a consequence, not a requirement for REL success.  It is an absolute imperative for SX to maintain their profit stream if they are serious about cutting prices to customers.
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Maybe it will happen, maybe not, but if it does, SpaceX and Blue Origin will be all over that.
You said you don't want this to be an argument about designs. Why don't you stop doing what you don't want and talk about Skylon?
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It didn't yet happen.
When the CEO and Chief Designer of SX say's it's not going to happen I'm fairly sure it's off the table.
[EDIT So let me be clear. You claim to know that Elon Musk is wrong and he will change his mind on this? 

Wow. Your powers of insight are truly abnormal. Nor are you handicapped by excess modesty either. ]
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It doesn't actually matter to my point.  My point is that if SpaceX and Blue Origin only ever get the price point to $60 million, that still hurts the value proposition of Skylon.  If they get it to $40 million, that hurts the value proposition even more.  $20 million even more.
$20m will never happen while F9 has an expendable upper stage. A point that has been made repeatedly and which you keep ignoring.
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At $5 million (Shotwell has told satellite operators to plan for that price point in the future), it entirely goes away.
What a very selective memory you have.

Shotwell was saying that when SX thought they could still do a fully reusable F9 with enough payload to accommodate a full size comm sat to GTO.  That was in June of 2013

That's been off the table since Sept 2014.

Do you not understand what the words "no reusable upper stage based on F9 or F9 derived hardware" mean?
« Last Edit: 08/08/2016 11:17 AM by john smith 19 »
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #29 on: 08/07/2016 05:35 PM »
We need Reaction Engines to make significant progress to spare us from listening to arguments to why Falcon 9 or BFR are dumb.
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Offline Robotbeat

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #30 on: 08/08/2016 11:29 AM »
Thank God for China, rescuing this thread from whining about SpaceX:

Looks like they're developing their own version of Skylon.

And good for them, as Europe is too timid to fully fund such a huge sum for the full-up space plane and Reaction Engines refuses to come up with a more practical, gradual plan to develop a reusable orbital vehicle.
http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/organizations/china-national-space-administration/china-develop-hybrid-spaceplane-cheaper-space-travel/
« Last Edit: 08/08/2016 11:30 AM by Robotbeat »
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Offline high road

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #31 on: 08/08/2016 01:03 PM »

Won't that just replace whining about SpaceX with whining about Chinese spacecraft looking too much like 'existing' designs? Until they're first to actually launch one of these, that is.

Offline flymetothemoon

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #32 on: 08/08/2016 01:25 PM »
Thank God for China, rescuing this thread from whining about SpaceX:

Looks like they're developing their own version of Skylon.

And good for them, as Europe is too timid to fully fund such a huge sum for the full-up space plane and Reaction Engines refuses to come up with a more practical, gradual plan to develop a reusable orbital vehicle.
http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/organizations/china-national-space-administration/china-develop-hybrid-spaceplane-cheaper-space-travel/

We knew this was coming. We've had several rumours. Congratulations Europe! Infuriating.

Offline Star One

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #33 on: 08/08/2016 01:35 PM »

Won't that just replace whining about SpaceX with whining about Chinese spacecraft looking too much like 'existing' designs? Until they're first to actually launch one of these, that is.

Well it makes a change from certain posters hyping up Space X on a REL thread

Offline Rocket Science

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #34 on: 08/08/2016 01:38 PM »
Thank God for China, rescuing this thread from whining about SpaceX:

Looks like they're developing their own version of Skylon.

And good for them, as Europe is too timid to fully fund such a huge sum for the full-up space plane and Reaction Engines refuses to come up with a more practical, gradual plan to develop a reusable orbital vehicle.
http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/organizations/china-national-space-administration/china-develop-hybrid-spaceplane-cheaper-space-travel/
"Knock-off artists champs"... :o For a nation with such a rich early history of civilization, have these people ever had an original idea in the last  100 years? ::)
"The laws of physics are unforgiving"
~Rob, Physics instructor, aviator, vintage auto racer

Offline momerathe

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #35 on: 08/08/2016 02:44 PM »
Thank God for China, rescuing this thread from whining about SpaceX:

Looks like they're developing their own version of Skylon.

Quote
It will rely on an indigenous turbine, ramjet, and rocket engines to power the spaceplane in various phases of flight.

Sounds like a multi-engine approach, rather than a single hybrid engine.

If they can make the design close with the mass penalty of three sets of engines, I will be very surprised.

thermodynamics will get you in the end

Online guckyfan

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #36 on: 08/08/2016 03:37 PM »
"Knock-off artists champs"... :o For a nation with such a rich early history of civilization, have these people ever had an original idea in the last  100 years? ::)

Sorry, that's deeply unfair. Really original ideas are exceedingly rare today. If they make it when Europe isn't, who should blame them.

To bring the thread back to SpaceX.  ;) Whenever SpaceX has done something new, someone comes and claims it is not original. Someone has done that before.


Offline Rocket Science

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #37 on: 08/08/2016 03:47 PM »
"Knock-off artists champs"... :o For a nation with such a rich early history of civilization, have these people ever had an original idea in the last  100 years? ::)

Sorry, that's deeply unfair. Really original ideas are exceedingly rare today. If they make it when Europe isn't, who should blame them.

To bring the thread back to SpaceX.  ;) Whenever SpaceX has done something new, someone comes and claims it is not original. Someone has done that before.
I have no problem with them building it if they pay REL for the licence to do so. Have a look at the aviation and space craft and you will see copies made of them since WWII with slight mods... On a general note they are not a nation of innovators but a communist system that demands conformity... Mass production yes, innovation not so much...
« Last Edit: 08/08/2016 03:50 PM by Rocket Science »
"The laws of physics are unforgiving"
~Rob, Physics instructor, aviator, vintage auto racer

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #38 on: 08/08/2016 03:50 PM »
On a general note they are not a nation of innovators but a communist system that demands conformity... Mass production yes, innovation not so much...

That's been said about Japan not so long ago, in my life perspective. But this is OT and I won't continue the discussion on this thread. If anyone opens a new thread.........

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (6)
« Reply #39 on: 08/08/2016 04:43 PM »
Sounds like a multi-engine approach, rather than a single hybrid engine.

If they can make the design close with the mass penalty of three sets of engines, I will be very surprised.
Indeed. They're going with a turbine/ramjet/rocket approach instead of the turbine/ramjet/SCRamjet approach which is a bit more sensible.

Chances of making it close on the mass is practically zero.
« Last Edit: 08/08/2016 04:45 PM by john smith 19 »
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

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