Author Topic: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)  (Read 442361 times)

Offline Asteroza

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1620 on: 07/05/2016 11:16 PM »
I wonder if that might be a backdoor war to fund the nacelle test vehicle? In the same vein as other marginally militarily useful vehicles like the X-37...
I hope that was a Freudian slip! We don't need any more wars to achieve political aims.

That said, the original proposed NTV had identical twin-engine configuration as Skylon, just with a shorter Sears-Haack body. I'm not sure how useful the BAE configuration would be for testing either the nacelle nor SABRE, given the stated purpose of Mach 5 "rapid response" cruise, not orbital launch.

Well, spellcheck won't prevent putting my foot in my mouth...

Rapid response as a term these days generally falls into non-ballistic depressed trajectory profiles to "show" you aren't delivering a nuke. Using SABRE as a booster engine for a boost-glide hypersonic delivery vehicle sort of fits. If it's like Hypersoar, you could potentially skip glide to target, drop payload, and reboost home, but that makes the fuselage design much harder. Though skip gliding and the ostensible boost-glide are a bit different, as skip glide had a secondary objective of getting out of the atmosphere to reduce heating.

Offline Hankelow8

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1621 on: 07/07/2016 10:50 PM »
If BAC do intend to use SABRE as shown in the video as an atmospheric vehicle , I was under the impression LAPCAT was the design best  suited to this form of flight, is SABRE capable of prolonged flight in the
 atmosphere ?.

REL are developing SABRE as a booster engine not a sustainer, however they don't say this is SABRE (the article only says "along the lines of"). At Mach 5-6, I can't see why they would want any of the rocket engine aspects of SABRE.

Nitpick - they haven't been called BAC since 1977.

Dear Nitpick!,

Thanks for bringing me back to present day (freudian slip).
It does look very much like "British Aerospace" are concentrating on the military aspects of SABRE/LAPCAT designs, great shame if Skylon is frozen out, but I still think the concept in 20 years will be what drives down cost even further with even greater reliability from the skylon type design.

How about views on what satellite launchers will be like in 30 years time, open to any thoughts from the forum on this, new thread I would think.
« Last Edit: 07/07/2016 10:54 PM by Hankelow8 »

Offline Archibald

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1622 on: 07/08/2016 06:21 AM »
IMVHO If they concentrate on LAPCAT rather than Skylon it is a very mad move - kinetic friction born out of  hours long cruise at Mach 5 is much more complicated than reaching orbit. And noise will be a problem, as will integration into airports and ATC.
Seriously - go for skylon !
« Last Edit: 07/08/2016 05:43 PM by Archibald »

Offline t43562

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1623 on: 07/08/2016 08:46 AM »
IMVHO If they concentrate on LAPCAT rather than Skylon it is a very mad move - kinetic friction born out of a hours long cruise at Mach 5 is much more complicated than reaching orbit. And noise will be a problem, as will integration into airports and ATC.
Seriously - go for skylon !

I don't think there's any suggestion of that.  They seem to have done some design work for a vehicle that is (I assume) a lot smaller than LAPCAT since there is no need to carry passengers. Possibly the engine might bear some slight comparison with the one proposed for lapcat.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1624 on: 07/08/2016 01:14 PM »
Thanks for bringing me back to present day (freudian slip).
It does look very much like "British Aerospace" are concentrating on the military aspects of SABRE/LAPCAT designs, great shame if Skylon is frozen out, but I still think the concept in 20 years will be what drives down cost even further with even greater reliability from the skylon type design.
They aren't called that either.

It's BAe Systems. And their nearest counterpart is neither Boeing or even ULA, it's LM.

The company that brought you the X33.

This is not a proud pedigree for lowering costs.   :(

I don't think there's any suggestion of that.  They seem to have done some design work for a vehicle that is (I assume) a lot smaller than LAPCAT since there is no need to carry passengers. Possibly the engine might bear some slight comparison with the one proposed for lapcat.

Scimitar was the engine, LAPCAT was the EU programme that funded and the outline REL design to carry the engine was A2.

Scimitar is a very different design to SABRE as it's a very different mission.

BTW interesting point about LAPCAT was REL was one of 2 designs remaining. The other was German. They said they could do a M8 SCramjet but it could not quite meet the mission range requirements. REL can't match that (theoretical) top speed but their design met the range requirements comfortable, although only 2.2x faster than Concorde.
« Last Edit: 07/08/2016 01:15 PM by john smith 19 »
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1625 on: 07/08/2016 01:23 PM »
ESA will be at Farmborough 11-17th July in the Hall 3 "Space Zone." Tuesday the 12th is "Space Day.

http://www.esa.int/About_Us/Exhibitions/FIA_2016/ESA_at_FIA_2016_-_Programme_of_key_events

Not especially 1130-1200

"Signature of the contract for the continued development of the SABRE - Synergetic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine - Phase 3B programme, "

If I'm reading this right then 3a is complete.

"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1626 on: 07/08/2016 01:32 PM »
IMVHO If they concentrate on LAPCAT rather than Skylon it is a very mad move - kinetic friction born out of a hours long cruise at Mach 5 is much more complicated than reaching orbit. And noise will be a problem, as will integration into airports and ATC.
Seriously - go for skylon !
True. The nicest short description of hypersonic cruise is "continuous re-entry."

In theory that will be the airframe mfg's problem.  :(

I remember  Alan Bond talking about some sort of military consulting or other work, quite some time ago) and when asked more, he said something like:  "well  you know - it's always about small pointy things zooming around"  or words to that effect.
Quote
Bond has mentioned that he has worked on problems of "National Defense." There is one area that countries have studied continuously in high speed flight and that's in respect to warhead reentry. In the UK that would have been the "Chevaline" project.
I watched that film recently about the US ambassador/representative to Libya. One can imagine how useful it would have been for them to receive reconnaissance/other support very quickly.
Don't get too excited. The USAF scrapped the SR71 because they didn't want to maintain the JP7 supply chain of storage tanks and tankers to carry it and that's room temperature storable.

LH2 is chemically much simpler to make but very difficult to store.
« Last Edit: 07/08/2016 01:37 PM by john smith 19 »
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline knowles2

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1627 on: 07/08/2016 01:36 PM »
ESA will be at Farmborough 11-17th July in the Hall 3 "Space Zone." Tuesday the 12th is "Space Day.

http://www.esa.int/About_Us/Exhibitions/FIA_2016/ESA_at_FIA_2016_-_Programme_of_key_events

Not especially 1130-1200

"Signature of the contract for the continued development of the SABRE - Synergetic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine - Phase 3B programme, "

If I'm reading this right then 3a is complete.


Phase 3A is the final design of the ground test engine?

Phase 3B would be the construction of that engine?
Phase 3C would be ground testing that engine and resolving any technological problems they encounter?


Offline Star One

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The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1628 on: 07/08/2016 03:28 PM »
IMVHO If they concentrate on LAPCAT rather than Skylon it is a very mad move - kinetic friction born out of a hours long cruise at Mach 5 is much more complicated than reaching orbit. And noise will be a problem, as will integration into airports and ATC.
Seriously - go for skylon !

At the end of the day you build what the customer wants and what they are paying you for. I doubt the military are that concerned by noise as such vehicles would operate out of airbases in the middle of nowhere.

I am increasing convinced BAE are far more interested in building something for the USAF than doing anything with Skylon any time soon. In fact it's a pretty good guess that's why the invested in REL in the first place.
« Last Edit: 07/08/2016 07:53 PM by Star One »

Offline knowles2

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1629 on: 07/08/2016 04:52 PM »
I think we should wait until we see their announcements at Farmborough before coming to any conclusions. The fact they continue to mention previous programs that were aimed at developing Skylon, suggests they plan on at least building Sabre test engine, which is probably the biggest step needed to produce Skylon.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1630 on: 07/08/2016 07:07 PM »
ESA will be at Farmborough 11-17th July in the Hall 3 "Space Zone." Tuesday the 12th is "Space Day.

http://www.esa.int/About_Us/Exhibitions/FIA_2016/ESA_at_FIA_2016_-_Programme_of_key_events

Not especially 1130-1200

"Signature of the contract for the continued development of the SABRE - Synergetic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine - Phase 3B programme, "

If I'm reading this right then 3a is complete.


Phase 3A is the final design of the ground test engine?

Phase 3B would be the construction of that engine?
Phase 3C would be ground testing that engine and resolving any technological problems they encounter?
In one of the REL reports key items listed in 3a (from memory can't find the report).

Final decision on SABRE 3 or 4 cycle
Improve inlet modelling
Thrust chamber manufacture development
Heat exchanger mfg improvement
Design ground demonstration
System design requirements review.

"3b" would appear to be "make it happen."
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline Misha Vargas

Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1631 on: 07/08/2016 07:27 PM »
They aren't called that either.

It's BAe Systems.

You're still one merger behind the times in capitalization. It's BAE Systems.
« Last Edit: 07/08/2016 07:28 PM by Misha Vargas »

Offline momerathe

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1632 on: 07/08/2016 09:59 PM »
It's BAe Systems. And their nearest counterpart is neither Boeing or even ULA, it's LM.

Even that's not a terribly good comparison. BAE haven't made a whole new aircraft in 20 years or more (excluding drones). I don't doubt that BAE can develop the engine, but I do doubt their ability to build a Skylon.
thermodynamics will get you in the end

Offline Star One

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The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1633 on: 07/08/2016 10:03 PM »
It's BAe Systems. And their nearest counterpart is neither Boeing or even ULA, it's LM.

Even that's not a terribly good comparison. BAE haven't made a whole new aircraft in 20 years or more (excluding drones). I don't doubt that BAE can develop the engine, but I do doubt their ability to build a Skylon.

I don't see why you're excluding drones being as Skylon is also a drone.
« Last Edit: 07/09/2016 07:16 AM by Star One »

Offline knowles2

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1634 on: 07/09/2016 12:39 AM »
It's BAe Systems. And their nearest counterpart is neither Boeing or even ULA, it's LM.

Even that's not a terribly good comparison. BAE haven't made a whole new aircraft in 20 years or more (excluding drones). I don't doubt that BAE can develop the engine, but I do doubt their ability to build a Skylon.
Skylon is a drone and so is the craft they show in the video.

The only area BAE might not have all of the in house know how or knowledge that can be brought in from other companies, is how to construct a heat shield that is capable of withstanding multiple reentries and other technologies in that area. Reaction Engines have done some work on this but I'm pretty certain if Skylon went ahead a tonne more work would have to be done on those areas before construction of the vehicle could begin.
« Last Edit: 07/09/2016 12:45 AM by knowles2 »

Offline Ravenger

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1635 on: 07/09/2016 10:58 PM »
Looks like REL are moving towards a new phase in Sabre development.

They're recruiting a Production Manager 'To plan, direct and coordinate all manufacturing operations and activities in line with company strategy and business plan.'

http://www.reactionengines.co.uk/careers_031productionmanager.html

Key Responsibilities and Accountabilities:

Establish the overall manufacturing vision and implement world-class manufacturing capabilities
Ensure manufacturing capability and capacity is available to support the SABRE programme, including fast make
Maximise the financial, human and capital assets while meeting the production schedule and objectives
Drive and reinforce lean manufacturing principles at all levels in the organisation
Lead efforts to continuously control costs, improve efficiency and productivity
Maximise opportunities for return on investment through commercial customers
Develop and lead a high performing team, well integrated with the wider organisation
Promote core company behaviours and accountability, leading by example
Planning and organising production schedules
Estimating, forecasting and agreeing budgets and timescales with customers (internal & external)
Procedure and process management
Accountability of HS&E for manufacturing facilities/sites

Offline john smith 19

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1636 on: 07/10/2016 11:06 AM »
The only area BAE might not have all of the in house know how or knowledge that can be brought in from other companies, is how to construct a heat shield that is capable of withstanding multiple reentries and other technologies in that area. Reaction Engines have done some work on this but I'm pretty certain if Skylon went ahead a tonne more work would have to be done on those areas before construction of the vehicle could begin.
It's not called a heat shield, it's called a skin and it's the other area that REL have (quietly) been working on.

In truth no one has experience of building using these materials. However at least 2 aircraft have flown with corrugated panel structures, including the SR71. The structural architecture for Skylon is very conservative, being panels riveted to a framework. This is well understood and frequently used. 

More to the point the issues around these designs are well understood.  The properties those parts need to have to build a safe vehicle is also known.

However let's keep in mind that REL's core goal is the mfg of the engine for a vehicle, not the vehicle itself.

REL's key problems are not technical, but financial. Specifically how to turn interest in the SABRESkylon into actual commitments that can be taken to banks for funding when the organization that builds it has not been formed yet.
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline topsphere

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1637 on: 07/11/2016 01:00 PM »
A tweet from REL states "We've strengthened our management team and opened a US Office".


https://twitter.com/ReactionEngines/status/752487279814406144

link to their news update

http://www.reactionengines.co.uk/news_11jul2016.html

Online Chris Bergin

Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1638 on: 07/11/2016 01:10 PM »
Beat me to it, Mr. Fast Fingers ;D

That is probably the most interesting thing about them for a long time. A step forward.

Offline knowles2

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Re: The Reaction Engines Skylon Master Thread (5)
« Reply #1639 on: 07/11/2016 04:02 PM »
A tweet from REL states "We've strengthened our management team and opened a US Office".


https://twitter.com/ReactionEngines/status/752487279814406144

link to their news update

http://www.reactionengines.co.uk/news_11jul2016.html
The biggest news here is Reaction Engines actually have a Twitter Account! I thought this whole PR mullarkey was beyond them.

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