Author Topic: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)  (Read 72922 times)

Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #40 on: 02/22/2016 03:58 AM »
Was building virtually a carbon copy of the first ship a wise move?

Yes. Starting from scratch would have cost them another ten years with no guarantee that the new design would be any better. (Hint. They should have stuck with SpaceShip One.)

Quote
Or does the new ship incorporate some of the same flaws that Scaled built into it?

They have said they have fixed the known problems. Flight testing should hopefully bring out any other unknown problems.

Quote
Are they going to flight test the shit out of it?

According to Mike Moses, yes. Read the NSF article.

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2016/02/moses-guide-vss-unity-her-north-star/

“We have tested thousands of elements of the ship and still need to test many more. Reaching milestones like our first glide flight and our first powered flight are exciting, but at every step of the way we will do everything possible to make sure that the each of the next steps are safe – and ultimately ready to fly you into space.”
« Last Edit: 02/22/2016 04:04 AM by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #41 on: 02/22/2016 04:37 AM »
Would it be too soon to start asking Virgin Galactic about the number of flight tests the second vehicle will fly that essentially duplicate what the first vehicle had already flown? Could they be planning flight test 1 as unpowered, and then immediately moving to a powered flight test 2?
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Online matthewkantar

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #42 on: 02/22/2016 05:02 AM »
I have waited patiently, is no one going to make a big deal of the baby breaking a bottle on the ship with out safety glasses? North star my eye. <snark

Matthew

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #43 on: 02/22/2016 08:36 AM »

Quote
Mr. Negativity is back on this thread. Could you for once, just for once, add something constructive to VG threads, in stead of just taking random stabs? Thanks.

I also appreciate the informed critiques that parabolicarc has been making. There's been plenty of PR-type cheerleading coming from VG and insufficient realism, IMHO.

Yes, we all want to see them succeed, but ignoring their many problems is rather like trying not to discuss the elephant in the living room.

It's not asking for an uncritical echo chamber but rather that particular poster seems to have a relentlessly negative agenda.

Offline ethan829

Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #44 on: 02/22/2016 10:34 AM »
Would it be too soon to start asking Virgin Galactic about the number of flight tests the second vehicle will fly that essentially duplicate what the first vehicle had already flown? Could they be planning flight test 1 as unpowered, and then immediately moving to a powered flight test 2?


https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/700775349240467456
Quote
Moses: not giving a schedule for test program; this is requirements-based, so not planning a specific number of flights at each step.


https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/700777028614664192
Quote
Shane: in captive carry flights will have 95% of propulsion system installed. Propulsion was “long pole” for 1st SS2 by years.


That sounds to me like they're going to be going through the entire testing regime again, captive, glide, and powered. Although I'd be surprised if the captive and glide tests weren't de-emphasized somewhat, given how thoroughly the last vehicle explored those areas.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VSS_Enterprise#List_of_test_flights

Offline woods170

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #45 on: 02/22/2016 10:45 AM »
The devil is in the details.

Was building virtually a carbon copy of the first ship a wise move?

Or does the new ship incorporate some of the same flaws that Scaled built into it?

Are they going to flight test the shit out of it?

Or are they pursuing a shorted powered flight test program along the lines of reckless program they had planned before the first ship went down?

Everyone said all the right things on Friday. But, they said the same things about safety before the crash. It was more rhetorical than real.


 
Mr. Negativity is back on this thread. Could you for once, just for once, add something constructive to VG threads, in stead of just taking random stabs? Thanks.


Woods why put fuel on the fire with a neg comment about someone whom you dislike...just screen out his comments and move on.


No, I won't. I'll explain why. Below is my personal opinion on this:

The reporting done here on NSF is of the highest standard and always neutral in tone and objective. Lot's of kudos to Chris, the other Chris and all those other great authors and editors on this site. In the past decade they have managed to establish and maintain a very high standard of reporting on anything spaceflight.

But whereas reporting on NSF is of the highest standards possible for journalism, the reporting on parabolicarc.com is most decidedly not. Over the years their reporting on anything VG has ever so gradually become biased and subjective towards the negative.
Now, that would not be a problem if that remained confined to parabolicarc.com. Unfortunately, their primary author has found it necessary to start spreading his FUD over here, at NSF. I really don't care for that. IMO it drags down the quality of NSF. IMO he is free to voice whatever biased opinion he has at his own site, but he should not be doing that over here as well. And IMO the folks at parabolicarc would be well advised to take an example from NSF, Spacenews, SFN, etc. where the journalism is done the way it is supposed to: be neutral and objective.

But I digress.
« Last Edit: 02/22/2016 10:47 AM by woods170 »

Offline SimonFD

Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #46 on: 02/22/2016 10:49 AM »
Would it be too soon to start asking Virgin Galactic about the number of flight tests the second vehicle will fly that essentially duplicate what the first vehicle had already flown? Could they be planning flight test 1 as unpowered, and then immediately moving to a powered flight test 2?


https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/700775349240467456
Quote
Moses: not giving a schedule for test program; this is requirements-based, so not planning a specific number of flights at each step.


https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/700777028614664192
Quote
Shane: in captive carry flights will have 95% of propulsion system installed. Propulsion was “long pole” for 1st SS2 by years.


That sounds to me like they're going to be going through the entire testing regime again, captive, glide, and powered. Although I'd be surprised if the captive and glide tests weren't de-emphasized somewhat, given how thoroughly the last vehicle explored those areas.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VSS_Enterprise#List_of_test_flights

I would expect (or is that hope) that VG consider this a completely new vehicle type and start testing again. Any changes made to the airframe or internals to support the findings of the NTSB enquiry or their own previous testing, could affect the flight characteristics and so a full regression test regime should be implemented.

With Mike Moses on board, this is what I would expect.
Space is big! Really big! You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is! I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space. Listen............

Offline yg1968

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #47 on: 02/22/2016 02:11 PM »
The devil is in the details.

Was building virtually a carbon copy of the first ship a wise move?

Or does the new ship incorporate some of the same flaws that Scaled built into it?

Are they going to flight test the shit out of it?

Or are they pursuing a shorted powered flight test program along the lines of reckless program they had planned before the first ship went down?

Everyone said all the right things on Friday. But, they said the same things about safety before the crash. It was more rhetorical than real.


 
Mr. Negativity is back on this thread. Could you for once, just for once, add something constructive to VG threads, in stead of just taking random stabs? Thanks.


Woods why put fuel on the fire with a neg comment about someone whom you dislike...just screen out his comments and move on.


No, I won't. I'll explain why. Below is my personal opinion on this:

The reporting done here on NSF is of the highest standard and always neutral in tone and objective. Lot's of kudos to Chris, the other Chris and all those other great authors and editors on this site. In the past decade they have managed to establish and maintain a very high standard of reporting on anything spaceflight.

But whereas reporting on NSF is of the highest standards possible for journalism, the reporting on parabolicarc.com is most decidedly not. Over the years their reporting on anything VG has ever so gradually become biased and subjective towards the negative.
Now, that would not be a problem if that remained confined to parabolicarc.com. Unfortunately, their primary author has found it necessary to start spreading his FUD over here, at NSF. I really don't care for that. IMO it drags down the quality of NSF. IMO he is free to voice whatever biased opinion he has at his own site, but he should not be doing that over here as well. And IMO the folks at parabolicarc would be well advised to take an example from NSF, Spacenews, SFN, etc. where the journalism is done the way it is supposed to: be neutral and objective.

But I digress.

Yes, I agree. His articles give the impression that he has an agenda against VG. The thing is he is often the first one to report on news relating to VG. So his article do contain a lot of good and often exclusive information. But I wish that it was presented with less of a slant.
« Last Edit: 02/22/2016 02:13 PM by yg1968 »

Online Lars-J

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #48 on: 02/22/2016 06:55 PM »
IMO - if there is a slant/bias, it is a slant/bias that has a basis in actual past history of what has happened in the last decade, and what has not happened. I certainly appreciate parabolicarc (the site and postings here) for the journalism that he provides - something that few (if any) other sources seem willing to provide.

Pretending that there aren't *significant* issues for them to deal with is not helpful in any way.

(Not that I think that what we write here has a direct effect on the employees at VG - I believe that they are more dedicated and have more important work to do than to be discouraged by some negative postings on NSF)

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #49 on: 02/22/2016 07:00 PM »
https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/700777028614664192
Quote
Shane: in captive carry flights will have 95% of propulsion system installed. Propulsion was “long pole” for 1st SS2 by years.

That sounds to me like they're going to be going through the entire testing regime again, captive, glide, and powered. Although I'd be surprised if the captive and glide tests weren't de-emphasized somewhat, given how thoroughly the last vehicle explored those areas.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VSS_Enterprise#List_of_test_flights

Thanks for the quote; it is encouraging to see the use of the plural in "captive carry flights!" What are the odds they glide on flight test 3? ;)
I think that's where we'll see whether they "walk the walk" or just "talk the talk" when it comes to thorough retesting.
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Offline A8-3

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #50 on: 02/22/2016 07:11 PM »
Quote
IMO - if there is a slant/bias, it is a slant/bias that has a basis in actual past history of what has happened in the last decade, and what has not happened. I certainly appreciate parabolicarc (the site and postings here) for the journalism that he provides - something that few (if any) other sources seem willing to provide.

I share this opinion. It seems they never had a realistic idea of what it was going to take, they constantly over hyped, and it's hard not to conclude that this contributed to the deaths of four men.

If you haven't read parabilocarc's coverage of the nitrous oxide explosion that killed three, do so now. Maybe then you'll understand why he has the opinion he does.

Offline parabolicarc

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #51 on: 02/22/2016 07:47 PM »
Would it be too soon to start asking Virgin Galactic about the number of flight tests the second vehicle will fly that essentially duplicate what the first vehicle had already flown? Could they be planning flight test 1 as unpowered, and then immediately moving to a powered flight test 2?


https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/700775349240467456
Quote
Moses: not giving a schedule for test program; this is requirements-based, so not planning a specific number of flights at each step.


https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/700777028614664192
Quote
Shane: in captive carry flights will have 95% of propulsion system installed. Propulsion was “long pole” for 1st SS2 by years.


That sounds to me like they're going to be going through the entire testing regime again, captive, glide, and powered. Although I'd be surprised if the captive and glide tests weren't de-emphasized somewhat, given how thoroughly the last vehicle explored those areas.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VSS_Enterprise#List_of_test_flights

I would expect (or is that hope) that VG consider this a completely new vehicle type and start testing again. Any changes made to the airframe or internals to support the findings of the NTSB enquiry or their own previous testing, could affect the flight characteristics and so a full regression test regime should be implemented.

With Mike Moses on board, this is what I would expect.

Moses has been there since October 2011. In other words, he'd been there for 3 years prior to the crash.

At the time of the accident, they had planned one additional flight test around three to four weeks after the Halloween one. There would probably have been another one to maximum altitude in December. Then they were going to turn it over to Virgin Galactic in December.  Commercial flights would have begun shortly thereafter from New Mexico with Branson & Son aboard the first flight.

So, think about that. Three short flights to low altitudes with one engine. Perhaps three others with a different engine with different characteristics. One flight to max altitude. And that's the entire powered flight test program.

What my sources were telling me is that Virgin Galactic was under financial pressure due to low funds and schedule pressure from Aabar to wrap up the flight test program and begin commercial flights. Despite Moses being there with all his expertise, the remaining flight test program was being driven by schedule and financial pressure, not by requirements.

This is what makes me cautious. Are Moses and the engineers now in charge, letting them do a thorough flight test program. Or will it still be driven at partly by cost and schedule (flight tests are expensive and time consuming) and by competitive pressure (Blue Origin)?

The original plan had been to do 30 powered flights. If they take a newish vehicle with a bunch of changes, zip through the captive carry and glide flights, then do only a handful of powered test, then how safe would you feel flying on this thing?

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #52 on: 08/01/2016 05:46 PM »
FOR  RELEASE –    AUGUST 1, 2016

FAA-AST AWARDS VIRGIN GALACTIC OPERATOR LICENSE FOR SPACESHIPTWO

New Spaceship Conducts Taxi Test as it Nears Start of Flight Test Program

Mojave, CA - August 1 2016 – The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration’s Office of Commercial Space Transportation (FAA-AST) has awarded Virgin Galactic an operating license for SpaceShipTwo.

The license award comes as the new vehicle, VSS Unity, begins to stretch its legs with the first tests conducted out of the hangar.  Unity conducted the first taxi test today to evaluate and calibrate the navigation and communications/telemetry systems.  Unity was pulled by a Range Rover Autobiography provided by Virgin Galactic's automotive partner Land Rover, the same vehicle that will be used to tow Unity off the runway after flight tests.

The license award, which will ultimately permit commercial operations of the vehicle, was the culmination of several years of in-depth interaction with the FAA.  The license review process consists of an in-depth review of the vehicle’s system design, safety analysis and flight trajectory analysis, culminating in FAA-AST approval.

Virgin Galactic Senior Vice President of Operations Mike Moses said, “The granting of our operator license is an important milestone for Virgin Galactic, as is our first taxi test for our new spaceship.  While we still have much work ahead to fully test this spaceship in flight, I am confident that our world-class team is up to the challenge.”

For more information and media inquiries:

 

http://www.image.net/virgingalactic

http://www.virgingalactic.com 

http://thespaceshipcompany.com/   

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #53 on: 08/01/2016 07:04 PM »
The license review process consists of an in-depth review of the vehicle’s system design, safety analysis and flight trajectory analysis, culminating in FAA-AST approval.

But clearly no review of in-flight test results of the rocket engine, as it hasn't ever flown!

I'm struggling to understand the point of a regulatory process that looks at the design and analysis but doesn't require flight test results.

Or is this licence conditional or caveated in some way, such as provided flight test results are in-line with design analysis predictions?

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Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #55 on: 08/01/2016 07:47 PM »
Ok, to answer my own question it turns out the licence doesn't cover space flight participants (ie paying passengers) until further test evidence is submitted to FAA. So right now VG is limited to test flights, although non-deployed payloads are possible.
« Last Edit: 08/01/2016 07:52 PM by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline Archibald

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #56 on: 08/09/2016 09:42 AM »
Overall I rate Parabolicarc way, way above NASA watch (which has become a caricature of itself a loooong time ago and never came back)

Quote
At the time of the accident, they had planned one additional flight test around three to four weeks after the Halloween one. There would probably have been another one to maximum altitude in December. Then they were going to turn it over to Virgin Galactic in December.  Commercial flights would have begun shortly thereafter from New Mexico with Branson & Son aboard the first flight.

So, think about that. Three short flights to low altitudes with one engine. Perhaps three others with a different engine with different characteristics. One flight to max altitude. And that's the entire powered flight test program.

What my sources were telling me is that Virgin Galactic was under financial pressure due to low funds and schedule pressure from Aabar to wrap up the flight test program and begin commercial flights. Despite Moses being there with all his expertise, the remaining flight test program was being driven by schedule and financial pressure, not by requirements.

This is what makes me cautious. Are Moses and the engineers now in charge, letting them do a thorough flight test program. Or will it still be driven at partly by cost and schedule (flight tests are expensive and time consuming) and by competitive pressure (Blue Origin)?

The original plan had been to do 30 powered flights. If they take a newish vehicle with a bunch of changes, zip through the captive carry and glide flights, then do only a handful of powered test, then how safe would you feel flying on this thing?

So they went from 30 to 7 (or less) test flights along the years. Indeed it says about the lack of funding and pressure they were on. All things considered, not unlike NASA in the pre-Challenger days, with similar result. Spaceflight reality is hard. Try to get ride of it, and it come bitting you hard.
« Last Edit: 08/09/2016 09:45 AM by Archibald »

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #57 on: 08/27/2016 05:14 AM »
[GSF]Tour of FAITH

Virgin Galactic

Published on Aug 26, 2016

Update 8/27/2016 video removed by user.

« Last Edit: 08/28/2016 03:26 AM by catdlr »
Tony De La Rosa

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #58 on: 08/28/2016 02:48 AM »
Video has been taken down. Can anyone who saw it please summarize?

Offline DeimosDream

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Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (3)
« Reply #59 on: 08/28/2016 01:20 PM »
Video has been taken down. Can anyone who saw it please summarize?

The video featured an extremely wide angle fish-eye lens oriented to show a 360-degree view plus ceiling. This distorted features of interest and may have reveled more than than permitted even if public release was intended.

The video began in the parking lot, led the narrator through several corridors and then across a working hanger containing a White Knight and a Space Ship Two.

Regrettably I ended the video when travel paused beneath what I assume where the twin tails of the White Knight before the Branson cut-out was found. I had grown tired of trying to mentally unwarp the video and falsely assumed the rest of the forum would shortly perform a more complete analysis than I ever could.

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