Author Topic: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2  (Read 189799 times)

Offline Space Ghost 1962

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1160 on: 05/18/2017 05:34 PM »
He means that the parents won't spend, not that they don't have it.

Offline ArbitraryConstant

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1161 on: 05/18/2017 07:46 PM »
What makes you think that LockMart and Boeing are incapable of doing what NASA is doing right now?
-Nobody's going to tell them "it's the law".
-Nobody's going to pay them upfront.

Offline woods170

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1162 on: 05/19/2017 06:10 AM »
What makes you think that LockMart and Boeing are incapable of doing what NASA is doing right now?
-Nobody's going to tell them "it's the law".
-Nobody's going to pay them upfront.

That was not my point. My point was that Boeing and LockMart can do what NASA is doing right now: re-learn how to build rockets in a (as of yet) theoretical scenario where ULA has been allowed to "die" and - for some reason - needs to be raised from the dead. The keyword here is "need". When there is a corporate need, the order to do something to satisfy that need, and the money to make it so, will eventually follow. See the original exchange of posts below:

Well maybe it should be more independent or they'll have a dead JV (Joint Venture) on both their hands.
Then if they need it they'll revive it from the dead.
That doesn't really make sense though. If everyone is laid off, institutional knowledge lost, factories shut down, contractors exit the market etc, they won't be able to just restart production even for the existing proven Atlas V/Delta IV. Seems like Centaur in particular would be extremely difficult to resurrect, and the Russian engine purchases have been grandfathered in but likely wouldn't be allowed to restart. The actual value in ULA would be lost forever even if they played "weekend at Bernies" with the corpse.
« Last Edit: 05/19/2017 06:17 AM by woods170 »

Offline ArbitraryConstant

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1163 on: 05/19/2017 01:58 PM »
-Nobody's going to tell them "it's the law".
-Nobody's going to pay them upfront.
That was not my point. My point was that Boeing and LockMart can do what NASA is doing right now: re-learn how to build rockets in a (as of yet) theoretical scenario where ULA has been allowed to "die" and - for some reason - needs to be raised from the dead. The keyword here is "need". When there is a corporate need, the order to do something to satisfy that need, and the money to make it so, will eventually follow.
Agreed they would be able to re-learn how to build rockets. My point in this scenario is that the things where ULA really offers unique value over and above all other launch providers in the world, like Centaur which I mentioned in the previous post, would be the most difficult to bring back. As likely as not, LM or Boeing would build a new rocket like Blue or SpaceX would do it. Forget about the legacy, grab new manufacturing techniques off the shelf, and build something new. Unless they were funded to recreate Centaur, but it's unlikely they would. There's a bunch of hydrogen upper stages among various providers in the world but none replace Centaur.

So it's not that Boeing or LM couldn't figure out how to build a rocket, it's that they would most likely never bring back the same capabilities that ULA provides today.

Offline Star One

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ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1164 on: 05/26/2017 04:27 PM »
Loser of  ULA’s Vulcan engine downselect will likely lose Air Force funding

Quote
Whichever engine is not selected by United Launch Alliance to power the Vulcan rocket could lose its Air Force funding, although top acquisition officials declined to say Wednesday whether they would definitely take that action.

“Once ULA makes their decision, that’s a choice that ULA makes, I’m interested in the launch service capability,” said Maj. Gen. Roger Teague, the director of space programs in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Acquisition.

Speaking to reporters at the Pentagon, Teague declined to say whether the Air Force would cancel funding for the development of whichever engine ULA does not select, but said that the service is focused on launch services rather than engine development.

“I’m not going to continue to fund a separate engine that may not be used as part of our overall assured access requirement,” Teague said.

http://spacenews.com/loser-of-ulas-vulcan-engine-downselect-will-likely-lose-funding/
« Last Edit: 05/26/2017 04:31 PM by Star One »

Online savuporo

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1165 on: 05/26/2017 04:32 PM »
Agreed they would be able to re-learn how to build rockets. ..
I'm hoping neither Boeing nor LM will start 're-learning' rocketry, but just go and snap up one of the new startups and go carefully about augmenting and complementing their capabilities to help them grow up fast.
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Online rst

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1166 on: 05/26/2017 06:12 PM »
I'm hoping neither Boeing nor LM will start 're-learning' rocketry, but just go and snap up one of the new startups and go carefully about augmenting and complementing their capabilities to help them grow up fast.

Boeing currently has two active rocketry projects, at very different scales: SLS and XS-1.

Offline clongton

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1167 on: 05/26/2017 08:03 PM »
Are you saying ULA is a prisoner of its parents shortsightedness?

Yes. Which is why I personally do not have a lot of confidence that Vulcan will actually fly.
The parent companies are run by boards of directors with no vision beyond tomorrow's closing bell.
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I started my career on the Saturn-V F-1A engine

Offline Jim

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1168 on: 05/26/2017 08:26 PM »
- the ICE component of IVF is dated. 

That means you don't understand IVF.  The least benefit of IVF is the power it generates. The ICE provides heat and pressure.   The savings is from the elimination of He and hydrazine.  IVF doesn't work with fuel cells, the heat of the ICE is needed to make IVF work.
« Last Edit: 05/26/2017 08:33 PM by Jim »

Offline Jim

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1169 on: 05/26/2017 08:30 PM »

But some of these are contradictory...  If you have to vent boil-off, you clearly do NOT have a pressurization issue, right? 


Wrong.  The stage pressures during coast vs during engine operation are at two different levels.  Boil off can not provide enough pressure during engine operation. 

And RCS thrusters, they can operate on Methalox without requiring the entirety of IVF.

No, not at regular tank pressures of around 30 psia
« Last Edit: 05/26/2017 08:32 PM by Jim »

Offline Jim

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1170 on: 05/26/2017 08:34 PM »
There is no radiator on ICE.

Where does the excess heat go?

Back into the propellant and out the thrusters

Offline Jim

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1171 on: 05/26/2017 08:36 PM »

So if overall Methane gain favor, IVF becomes less attractive than it was under Hydrogen.


Not true at all.  Still have the same pressure and RCS prop issues.

Offline joek

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1172 on: 05/26/2017 09:30 PM »
Are you saying ULA is a prisoner of its parents shortsightedness?

ULA is, by definition (and has always been) a prisoner of its parents.  ULA is a JV-construct of Boeing and LM.  ULA does not bark, sit, roll over, fetch or sh*t unless directed and allowed by ULA's board--which consists of LM and Boeing executives who have only one loyalty and one remand (by contract and law)--their parents.

Whether you view constraints on ULA's activities as the parent's shortsightedness, or the parent's putting themselves (and their shareholders) first... is open to debate, but boils down to the same.

I really wish we could strike "ULA" from these conversations, and substitute "Boeing-LM JV", as too often ire is directed at ULA, when in fact ULA is simply a pass-through and whipping boy for the real players.
« Last Edit: 05/26/2017 09:34 PM by joek »

Offline ChrisWilson68

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Re: ULA Vulcan Launch Vehicle - General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1173 on: 05/26/2017 10:31 PM »
Agreed they would be able to re-learn how to build rockets. ..
I'm hoping neither Boeing nor LM will start 're-learning' rocketry, but just go and snap up one of the new startups and go carefully about augmenting and complementing their capabilities to help them grow up fast.

Big, old-guard companies buying up small, innovative companies because they can't innovate themselves usually doesn't work out very well.  They usually end up destroying what was innovative in the small companies.

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