Author Topic: Virgin Galactic (Orbit) preparing for busy LauncherOne future  (Read 23557 times)

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #60 on: 03/06/2017 07:20 PM »
Here's a much higher res version from Virgin Orbit:

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Our manufacturing facility is starting to fill up with hardware for #LauncherOne. Structures,  engines, and more! Here's a small taste:

https://twitter.com/virgin_orbit/status/838836577577095169

Offline envy887

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #61 on: 03/06/2017 08:52 PM »
Closeups of the interstage, fairings, and S2 LOX tank and skirt. 151 lbm for the interstage :D

Offline ringsider

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #62 on: 03/08/2017 07:25 PM »
Love the high quality plywood work stands...

Offline SDSmith

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #63 on: 03/08/2017 09:15 PM »
Love the high quality plywood work stands...
And the padding on the supporting frames.

Online HMXHMX

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #64 on: 03/09/2017 04:02 AM »
Love the high quality plywood work stands...

This is the influence of ex-Scalies that work at The Spaceship Company. 

Offline ringsider

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #65 on: 03/09/2017 04:06 AM »
Love the high quality plywood work stands...

This is the influence of ex-Scalies that work at The Spaceship Company.
Ha. You are right, had not thought of that. Burt's legacy lives on.

Just seems incongruous to have about 300 employees, a 747-based concept, an enormous expensive factory in LA - and save money on plywood tressles...

Online HMXHMX

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #66 on: 03/09/2017 03:59 PM »
Love the high quality plywood work stands...

This is the influence of ex-Scalies that work at The Spaceship Company.
Ha. You are right, had not thought of that. Burt's legacy lives on.

Just seems incongruous to have about 300 employees, a 747-based concept, an enormous expensive factory in LA - and save money on plywood tressles...

Back when Scaled was Scaled (I'm thinking mid to late 90s) they had 30-60 employees, no 747 and a very inexpensive shop in Mojave.  That's how they could build prototype jet aircraft for $1-2M in 18 months or less.

To my mind, this is the way to build rockets.  Labor is everything, but these days, investors are wowed by "shiny."  VG is the poster child for shiny, in more ways than one.  (And to be fair, "shiny" started with Elon.)

Offline Hobbes-22

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #67 on: 03/10/2017 08:11 AM »
Isn't this the first rocket being assembled? It'd make sense to have temporary, improvised fixtures while the assembly process is being figured out.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #68 on: 03/14/2017 06:53 PM »
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Honored to be named to the Rising Five, alongside the great teams at OneWeb @planetlabs, @SpireGlobal @KymetaCorp http://www.satellitetoday.com/telecom/2017/03/08/sspi-names-top-five-coming-space-companies/

https://twitter.com/virgin_orbit/status/841730997200740352

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The Society of Satellite Professionals International (SSPI) named the first annual Rising Five, the five NewSpace companies in the satellite industry that have made the most substantial progress over the past year. The 2017 Rising Five are Kymeta, OneWeb, Planet, Spire Global and Virgin Galactic.

Offline Lars-J

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #69 on: 03/14/2017 07:21 PM »
https://twitter.com/virgin_orbit/status/841730997200740352

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The Society of Satellite Professionals International (SSPI) named the first annual Rising Five, the five NewSpace companies in the satellite industry that have made the most substantial progress over the past year. The 2017 Rising Five are Kymeta, OneWeb, Planet, Spire Global and Virgin Galactic.

That's not exactly a ringing endorsement of the state of the small sat business. Progress is being made, but are these really the best five?

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #70 on: 03/15/2017 09:57 PM »
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Testing of our NewtonFour rocket engine (for #LauncherOne upper stage) continues! Now w/ diffuser tube to simulate lower backpressures

https://twitter.com/virgin_orbit/status/842144666959011841

Offline zotiraki

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #71 on: 03/17/2017 08:43 AM »
Anybody know how many OneWeb satellites can be launched with a single LauncherOne? I can't find a definitive answer!  Thanks

Online brickmack

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #72 on: 03/19/2017 06:26 PM »
Anybody know how many OneWeb satellites can be launched with a single LauncherOne? I can't find a definitive answer!  Thanks

1 each. Each satellite is about 200 kg, it pretty much maxes out LauncherOnes current performance target. Theres probably room for growth though

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #73 on: 03/27/2017 09:04 PM »
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Because we know you love rocket engines: Full-thrust, long duration NewtonFour (upper stage engine) test last week. 1 of a couple that day!

https://twitter.com/virgin_orbit/status/846464634026524672

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #74 on: 04/02/2017 09:17 AM »
George Whitesides was interviewed on TMRO yesterday. Interview starts at about 20:50 into the show:



Interview covers LauncherOne from about 34:10. Don't think there's anything new. George said LauncherOne payload is 300 kg SSO, list price $12M.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #75 on: 04/10/2017 02:37 PM »
Virgin Orbit blog post on their use of 3D printing: https://www.virgin.com/entrepreneur/how-3d-printing-changing-future-space-industry

It's written for a general audience and includes this snippet:

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Recently we tested a hybrid manufactured printed rocket engine part in a hot fire test for the very first time. It was a nozzle skirt extension for our upper stage engine and performed very well.

In the time it would take to build another nozzle skirt, we can 3D print it, make modifications and test it ten times.
« Last Edit: 04/10/2017 02:37 PM by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline jongoff

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #76 on: 04/10/2017 03:23 PM »
Interview covers LauncherOne from about 34:10. Don't think there's anything new. George said LauncherOne payload is 300 kg SSO, list price $12M.

So two OneWeb sats for $12M, or roughly twice the payload of Electron (300kg SSO vs 150kg SSO) for a bit more than twice the price ($12M vs $5M). My only disappointment was that for a while they were saying "less than $10M" for the launch, without being specific, so I was hoping they had found a way to drive down the price, and were only being vague to not tip off the competition.

At $12M per launch, it puts them in the same $35-40k/kg to SSO category as most other dedicated smallsat launchers. Potentially interesting for constellation gap filling, but not really competitive for launching the main bulk of a constellation.

Still will be great to see if both they and RocketLabs can really get their first flights off this year.

~Jon
« Last Edit: 04/10/2017 03:23 PM by jongoff »

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Virgin Galactic preparing for busy LauncherOne future
« Reply #77 on: 05/04/2017 07:41 AM »
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Auction alert: Virgin Orbit donated a behind-the-scenes look at their rocket factory for the winner and 5 guests! http://buff.ly/2pFjazM

https://twitter.com/setiinstitute/status/859504532383989760

I like the first picture with this tweet:

Offline Chris Bergin

Added "Orbit" to the thread title given they are going with that on most comments now.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Added "Orbit" to the thread title given they are going with that on most comments now.

And here's their new logo to go with the new name.

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