Author Topic: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?  (Read 18511 times)

Offline strangequark

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #20 on: 05/08/2013 03:13 PM »
The war of words continues...

Can you spot at least four things wrong with the following sentence (from an <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-25/what-spacex-can-teach-us-about-cost-innovation.html> article "about" SpaceX[/url]):

"Another similar space venture is still using fuel-inefficient surplus Russian rocket engines built in the 1960's that cost more to run and maintain over time. Due to their finite number, the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

I find the date the article was issued (April 25) interesting...

The fuel-inefficient comment is really annoying. May this man be haunted mercilessly by the ghost of Kuznetsov.

Offline Nickolai

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #21 on: 05/08/2013 03:14 PM »
The war of words continues...

Can you spot at least four things wrong with the following sentence (from an <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-25/what-spacex-can-teach-us-about-cost-innovation.html> article "about" SpaceX[/url]):

"Another similar space venture is still using fuel-inefficient surplus Russian rocket engines built in the 1960's that cost more to run and maintain over time. Due to their finite number, the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

I find the date the article was issued (April 25) interesting...

OK, I'll bite:

1. Fuel ineffcient??
2. Cost more to run??
3. Finite number?? Umm, yes, until more are built...just like Merlins are finite in number...until more are built...
4. Limited future unless own engine developed??

Ah, the indignities.

3. I think the point is that no more are being built. No more have been built in nearly 40 years, which means the production line has to be created nearly from scratch, which is going to be a capital intensive process. Although IIRC either Aerojet or Orbital has a license to build NK-33's AJ-26's in the US.

And one you missed: NK-33 were built in the 1970's.

Offline strangequark

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #22 on: 05/08/2013 03:30 PM »
3. I think the point is that no more are being built. No more have been built in nearly 40 years, which means the production line has to be created nearly from scratch, which is going to be a capital intensive process. Although IIRC either Aerojet or Orbital has a license to build NK-33's AJ-26's in the US.

And one you missed: NK-33 were built in the 1970's.

It's Aerojet. They've done some of the preliminary footwork for producing in Huntsville in collaboration with Teledyne Brown.

Test NK-33As have been built and fired in Samara in the last few years.
« Last Edit: 05/08/2013 03:34 PM by strangequark »

Offline Lurker Steve

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #23 on: 05/08/2013 04:20 PM »
The war of words continues...

Can you spot at least four things wrong with the following sentence (from an <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-25/what-spacex-can-teach-us-about-cost-innovation.html> article "about" SpaceX[/url]):

"Another similar space venture is still using fuel-inefficient surplus Russian rocket engines built in the 1960's that cost more to run and maintain over time. Due to their finite number, the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

I find the date the article was issued (April 25) interesting...

Since you aren't re-using the engines, what is the "maintenance" cost ? Sure, Aerojet needs to test and qualify each engine down at Stennis. These costs might actually be less than SpaceX, since they didn't need to build a complete testing facility and test stands like SpaceX did at McGregor.

How about the assembly cost ? What is easier, attaching 2 larger engines to the thrust structure, or working on complex plumbing and control connections for 9 separate engines ?

Online edkyle99

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #24 on: 05/08/2013 04:50 PM »
The war of words continues...

Can you spot at least four things wrong with the following sentence (from an <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-25/what-spacex-can-teach-us-about-cost-innovation.html> article "about" SpaceX[/url]):

"Another similar space venture is still using fuel-inefficient surplus Russian rocket engines built in the 1960's that cost more to run and maintain over time. Due to their finite number, the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

I find the date the article was issued (April 25) interesting...
So much wrong there.  The author, like so many, wants to write an Antares versus Falcon 9 fight to the death kind of story.  But there is no story.  Antares is in its own class.  SpaceX has decided to battle United Launch Alliance.  That's the story, but for some reason it seems so much less interesting.

 - Ed Kyle

Offline Lurker Steve

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #25 on: 05/08/2013 05:17 PM »
The war of words continues...

Can you spot at least four things wrong with the following sentence (from an <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-25/what-spacex-can-teach-us-about-cost-innovation.html> article "about" SpaceX[/url]):

"Another similar space venture is still using fuel-inefficient surplus Russian rocket engines built in the 1960's that cost more to run and maintain over time. Due to their finite number, the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

I find the date the article was issued (April 25) interesting...
So much wrong there.  The author, like so many, wants to write an Antares versus Falcon 9 fight to the death kind of story.  But there is no story.  Antares is in its own class.  SpaceX has decided to battle United Launch Alliance.  That's the story, but for some reason it seems so much less interesting.

 - Ed Kyle

Actually, you could say that Orbital has already won the first "battle" with SpaceX, since the Minotaur and Pegasus have won the market for smaller payloads, thus shutting Falcon 1 out of that market.

Offline kevin-rf

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #26 on: 05/08/2013 05:37 PM »
Well, Luker Steve one error is they have not won, but are still winning ;)
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Offline Lurker Steve

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #27 on: 05/08/2013 05:48 PM »
Well, Luker Steve one error is they have not won, but are still winning ;)

Does the Falcon 1 still exist ?

Offline antonioe

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #28 on: 05/08/2013 05:50 PM »
I usually don't respond to Elon's jabs, but that one just left me out of breath... the part that hurt me the most was the implication "Another similar space venture [Orbital, I guess - who else?] ... the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

*SIGH*... the company, not the rocket...

Now, I don't think Mr. Agan came up with that one by himself.  But why?  Why is it necessary to sling mud at others to succeed in business?

The whole thing reminds me of Salvor Hardin's favorite maxim...

ARS LONGA, VITA BREVIS...

Online Lar

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #29 on: 05/08/2013 05:55 PM »
I usually don't respond to Elon's jabs, but that one just left me out of breath... the part that hurt me the most was the implication "Another similar space venture [Orbital, I guess - who else?] ... the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

*SIGH*... the company, not the rocket...

Now, I don't think Mr. Agan came up with that one by himself.  But why?  Why is it necessary to sling mud at others to succeed in business?

The whole thing reminds me of Salvor Hardin's favorite maxim...


I don't think that was Elon. He knows there is plenty of room for both SpaceX and OSC, and for widely diverging paths. It was just a clueless reporter.

Sad thing is that there is some merit in the themes (of innovation, of long range goals, of planning for long term cost reduction) that the article is trying to explore.
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Offline antonioe

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #30 on: 05/08/2013 06:09 PM »
Yes, there is merit in innovation, long-range goals (did I mention there were 20 employees at Orbital when I joined Dave 27 years ago?) and cost reduction, but there is no merit in distorting truth.  By the way, he's a consultant, not a reporter according to his bio (from his own web site):

With over 25 years of experience, Tom has advised many of the world’s leading companies in a diverse range of industries—consumer packaged goods, automotive, financial services, retail, insurance, entertainment, pharmaceuticals, and telecom. He has worked with companies like Red Bull, Kraft, Sainsbury’s, Procter & Gamble, Cisco, GE, Toyota, UBS, The World Bank, and Kmart, to name a few.

Most recently, Tom served as senior vice president and managing director at The Nielsen Company where he oversaw global services for one of the world’s largest consumer packaged goods companies. There he pioneered an innovation best practices study shared around the world. For the first time ever, the study tied variations in new product revenue to differences in processes, culture, organizational structure, senior executive roles, and investment among dozens of global companies. Also at Nielsen, he was a principal for The Cambridge Group, its management consulting arm, where he led innovation and other go-to-market projects for leading companies.

Tom has also held senior positions at Interbrand (as executive director, strategy), Penn, Schoen and Berland (as managing director), Prophet (as senior partner launching and managing Europe, and managing North America), and Kurt Salmon Associates (as a principal). He began his career at Andersen (Accenture).

Agan’s work and expertise have appeared in leading media including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Forbes, Fast Company, BBC, NBC, PBS, Advertising Age, and BrandChannel.com. His white papers have covered a range of topics from micro-targeting to changes in the consulting industry, the latter written for Harvard Business School.

An engaging speaker, Tom has presented at top industry conferences such as the Economist CMO Marketing Summit, National Retail Federation and Sustainable Brands. He was a judge for the 2012 Edison Innovation Awards.

Tom has also served as an Outward Bound instructor in Maine and North Carolina teaching wilderness programs for executives on leadership and personal development and as a VISTA volunteer in Kansas leading community development programs in a poor and working class neighborhood.

Tom holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BS in forestry from Iowa State University.

Tom is based in Chicago and Boston.
« Last Edit: 05/08/2013 06:12 PM by antonioe »
ARS LONGA, VITA BREVIS...

Offline Jason1701

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #31 on: 05/08/2013 06:10 PM »
"a incorrect in forestry"? :D

Offline Space Pete

Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #32 on: 05/08/2013 06:11 PM »
I usually don't respond to Elon's jabs, but that one just left me out of breath... the part that hurt me the most was the implication "Another similar space venture [Orbital, I guess - who else?] ... the company has a limited future unless like SpaceX it develops its own engine."

Just ignore him - he's just "feeling the heat" from your AJ-26's. ;)
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Online notsorandom

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #33 on: 05/08/2013 06:13 PM »
Got to love that auto censor filter!

Offline antonioe

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #34 on: 05/08/2013 06:20 PM »
I'm sorry - you're right.  I apologize.  As a matter of fact, I saw Gwynne last night at the AIAA fellows dinner (she was just elected a fellow) and got up to her "gauntlet" (a long-standing tradition at the AIAA fellows dinner is an "attack" of each newly elected fellow by his/her friends and supporters as they come down from the stage after receiving the award - hence the "gauntlet")
ARS LONGA, VITA BREVIS...

Online Lar

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #35 on: 05/08/2013 06:26 PM »
"a incorrect in forestry"? :D
We preferred to call it "Twigonometry" at Michigan Tech...

I'm sorry - you're right.  I apologize.  As a matter of fact, I saw Gwynne last night at the AIAA fellows dinner (she was just elected a fellow) and got up to her "gauntlet" (a long-standing tradition at the AIAA fellows dinner is an "attack" of each newly elected fellow by his/her friends and supporters as they come down from the stage after receiving the award - hence the "gauntlet")

I don't think you have anything to apologise for. The reporter/consultant was confused, and OSC has much to be proud of.
« Last Edit: 05/08/2013 06:27 PM by Lar »
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Offline deltaV

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #36 on: 05/08/2013 11:45 PM »
Elon makes a much bigger deal about the Merlin's T/W than is justified IMHO. The reporter's mistaken fuel efficiency claim sounds like a distorted version of Merlin's record T/W, so Elon is in part responsible for that mistake.

Offline kevin-rf

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #37 on: 05/08/2013 11:57 PM »
Who has a higher ISP again? Kinda hard to top an AJ-26. That is the only measure of fuel efficiency I know.
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Offline Lars_J

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #38 on: 05/08/2013 11:57 PM »
Elon makes a much bigger deal about the Merlin's T/W than is justified IMHO. The reporter's mistaken fuel efficiency claim sounds like a distorted version of Merlin's record T/W, so Elon is in part responsible for that mistake.

How is he to blame? A fact is a fact. Either he is wrong about the T/W record or he isn't.

The issue is that the reporter was unaware (or did not bother to research) that there is more to engine efficiency than just T/W ratio.

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Re: Antares - How much is actually built by Orbital?
« Reply #39 on: 05/09/2013 12:50 AM »
Elon makes a much bigger deal about the Merlin's T/W than is justified IMHO. The reporter's mistaken fuel efficiency claim sounds like a distorted version of Merlin's record T/W, so Elon is in part responsible for that mistake.
The only measure of engine efficiency I know of is Isp, and SpaceX's engines suck big time in this. T/W has nothing to do with engine efficiency.
« Last Edit: 05/09/2013 12:50 AM by asmi »

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