Author Topic: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch  (Read 14964 times)


Offline Space Pete

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Offline jcm

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Not only was Antares the name for the Apollo 14 LM, as noted by another poster, it was the name of the family of the solid rocket motors used as the third stage of the Scout launch vehicle (ABL X-254 Antares I, ABL X-259 Antares II, Thiokol Star 31 Antares III).

Of course, let's not forget the true meaning of the name for the red star Antares: "Rival of Ares".  Subtle dig at the Liberty folks? :-)
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Offline Prober

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Not only was Antares the name for the Apollo 14 LM, as noted by another poster, it was the name of the family of the solid rocket motors used as the third stage of the Scout launch vehicle (ABL X-254 Antares I, ABL X-259 Antares II, Thiokol Star 31 Antares III).

Of course, let's not forget the true meaning of the name for the red star Antares: "Rival of Ares".  Subtle dig at the Liberty folks? :-)


maybe they should have called Liberty..... "Antares"
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Offline Ronsmytheiii

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Of course, let's not forget the true meaning of the name for the red star Antares: "Rival of Ares".  Subtle dig at the Liberty folks? :-)

Considering the fact that ATK makes the upperstage for Antares and the first stage for Ares I/Liberty, highly doubtful.  It was just an available constellation name.
And this is a good reminder that just because one of your fellow space enthusiasts occasionally voices doubts about the SpaceX schedule announcements or is cautious about believing SpaceX has licked a problem before actually seeing proof that's true, it doesn't mean they hate SpaceX.

Offline neilh

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I like the new name, excited to see it launch. :)
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Offline aquanaut99

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I like it, tho one thing bothers me about this design: why choose a solid upperstage? Performance-wise that doesn't seem like a very smart move to me, as solids usually have a pretty low isp, no?

Offline MP99

I like it, tho one thing bothers me about this design: why choose a solid upperstage? Performance-wise that doesn't seem like a very smart move to me, as solids usually have a pretty low isp, no?

This isn't about squeezing the last iota of performance from the smallest package, it's about delivering a large enough payload to orbit at an affordable price.

I guess HESS is still there as a growth option for the future if they have a customer for the higher performance.

cheers, Martin

Offline baldusi

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HESS would also put it very close to the Falcon 9 on performance. I'm not sure they want to go head to head. The basic idea was to go below it's performance and below its price.

Offline kevin-rf

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HESS would also put it very close to the Falcon 9 on performance. I'm not sure they want to go head to head. The basic idea was to go below it's performance and below its price.

The real question is can they beat the Falcon 9 price.

The COTS contracts say no. Those are the only real prices we have at present. If like many claim, SpaceX's prices are to head north and Orbital stay inline, maybe...
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Offline strangequark

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #10 on: 12/13/2011 03:08 PM »
I like it, tho one thing bothers me about this design: why choose a solid upperstage? Performance-wise that doesn't seem like a very smart move to me, as solids usually have a pretty low isp, no?

The Russian government had issues with them importing the liquid engine they wanted to use. Unfortunately, the American offerings for upper stage engines are pretty slim right now.

Offline Antares

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #11 on: 12/13/2011 03:12 PM »
Orbital does things for one reason: profit.  There's nothing wrong with that, aside from occasional pennywise pound foolish moves.  If F9 stays successful, it's hard to see how TRFKAT2 sells to anyone but the government.

Turfcat... I like it ;)
« Last Edit: 12/13/2011 03:14 PM by Antares »
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Offline Robotbeat

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #12 on: 12/13/2011 03:14 PM »
Orbital does things for one reason: profit.  If F9 stays successful, it's hard to see how TRFKAT2 sells to anyone but the government.

Turfcat... I like it ;)
Now everyone will think you're an Orbital fanboi. :)
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Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #13 on: 12/13/2011 03:15 PM »
I like it, tho one thing bothers me about this design: why choose a solid upperstage? Performance-wise that doesn't seem like a very smart move to me, as solids usually have a pretty low isp, no?

The Russian government had issues with them importing the liquid engine they wanted to use. Unfortunately, the American offerings for upper stage engines are pretty slim right now.

Is that the RD-0148, the RL-10B-2 equivalent?
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Offline ugordan

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #14 on: 12/13/2011 03:16 PM »
The Russian government had issues with them importing the liquid engine they wanted to use.

Interesting, I always thought they simply gave up on a liquid upperstage.


TRFKAT2

Ha!

Offline strangequark

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #15 on: 12/13/2011 03:28 PM »
The Russian government had issues with them importing the liquid engine they wanted to use. Unfortunately, the American offerings for upper stage engines are pretty slim right now.

Is that the RD-0148, the RL-10B-2 equivalent?

Honestly not sure on details. I heard it second hand, though from a reliable source.

Offline Ronsmytheiii

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #16 on: 12/13/2011 03:53 PM »
The Russian government had issues with them importing the liquid engine they wanted to use. Unfortunately, the American offerings for upper stage engines are pretty slim right now.

Is that the RD-0148, the RL-10B-2 equivalent?

Honestly not sure on details. I heard it second hand, though from a reliable source.

There has been considerable discussion on what liquid engine we would select for the Enhanced configuration liquid upper stage.  Having lost my own personal battle for an RL10-based upper stage (probably for good reason...) I am happy to report that we are negotiation with the Russian government for usage approval of the RD-0124, the current (relatively new) Soyuz upper stage engine.  The bad news is that it is yet another non-U.S. engine (the rest of the stage, however, is U.S. manufacture, with final assembly in Chandler).  The good news is that it has the perfect packaging aspect ratio for Taurus II, and it's performance kicks a$$!!!

Initially it will not have restart capability, so it's definitely ISS-oriented.  With restart capability (to be developed later) it has some serious mid-class GTO capability.

Now Taurus II ("II E"?) has an easy time lifting a three-person capsule!
And this is a good reminder that just because one of your fellow space enthusiasts occasionally voices doubts about the SpaceX schedule announcements or is cautious about believing SpaceX has licked a problem before actually seeing proof that's true, it doesn't mean they hate SpaceX.

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #17 on: 12/13/2011 04:50 PM »
There has been considerable discussion on what liquid engine we would select for the Enhanced configuration liquid upper stage.  Having lost my own personal battle for an RL10-based upper stage (probably for good reason...) I am happy to report that we are negotiation with the Russian government for usage approval of the RD-0124, the current (relatively new) Soyuz upper stage engine.  The bad news is that it is yet another non-U.S. engine (the rest of the stage, however, is U.S. manufacture, with final assembly in Chandler).  The good news is that it has the perfect packaging aspect ratio for Taurus II, and it's performance kicks a$$!!!

What I find very interesting about this is that, if adopted, using RD-0124 would mean that both 'new-space' commercial launchers are all-kerolox.
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Offline Jose

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #18 on: 12/13/2011 04:55 PM »
Heh.
Quote
To clear up any marketplace confusion and provide clear differentiation between this new launch vehicle and our Taurus XL rocket.

I wonder why...

Was this in the press release at some point? It's gone now.



Offline edkyle99

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Re: Taurus II changes name to the Antares ahead of debut launch
« Reply #19 on: 12/13/2011 05:03 PM »
I like it, tho one thing bothers me about this design: why choose a solid upperstage? Performance-wise that doesn't seem like a very smart move to me, as solids usually have a pretty low isp, no?

There have been improvements.  Castor 30 provides 301 to 303 sec ISP, closing the gap a bit on, say, gas generator hydrocarbon liquid alternatives.  A solid upper stage could prove more reliable than a liquid upper stage that uses cryogenics, though that is not guaranteed.  In addition, a solid upper stage requires less work (umbilicals, propellant loading) on the pad, etc.

Of course a real issue was lack of liquid upper stage alternatives in the U.S. 

 - Ed Kyle

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