How much would it cost for SpaceX to add a crew access arm to the launch tower for the Starship?
Quote from: Vahe231991 on 09/18/2023 03:54 amHow much would it cost for SpaceX to add a crew access arm to the launch tower for the Starship?Elon recently tweeted that the full stack will likely grow by 10%-20% in height. This will require tower modifications. IDK for sure, but I believe this tower is much more easily modified than SLS tower. I think it was designed with simplicity of future modifications in mind.
If they can support 150+ tonnes at 4(?) g axially (FH payload & fuel at MECO), but can't support their own empty mass of 4 tonnes at 2 g laterally even with the aid of "highly specialized structures"... that would be quite a result for a horizontally-integrated LV
It will be interesting to see how SpaceX intend to land both vehicles to make the system fully reusable as stated. The Super Heavy goes higher and faster than the Falcon 9 first stage but they haven't tested such a landing. As far as the second stage is concerned assuming it will have the capability to do a controlled landing from LEO escape velocity is a different story. Currently, a ballistic re-entry is the only possibility.
You might need to expend the starship for higher delta-v, instead you could just fill the spacecraft inside with a big fuel tank and let that do some of the work.
Here's a fun one I don't recall seeing before, but may well have overlooked:Could SH SSTO with a simple nose cone for low-altitude aerodynamics?If so, with orbital refueling you could stack a payload after the fact and REALLY expend a booster.