What is the Landing accuracy of Cargo Dragon D1 vs Crew/Cargo Dragon D2 ? I always wondered why SpaceX splashes Down where they do in the Pacific. If they are to transport returned science to Texas, why not land in Gulf of Mexico?
"the Dragon capsule would splashdown off the coast of Florida wherevehicle recovery would occur."
Could you not do a first deorbit burn and then drop the Trunk/SM so that it lands in the middle of the drink, then tweak your orbit accordingly to pick a different location for the Dragon? The prop is all in the Dragon itself, isn't it? As long as you don't plan to boost yourself back to orbit and sit there for a long time before de-orbiting for real... how long can D1/D2 operate without the Trunk/SM ?
..but I always disliked the fact that Dragon 2 still has a trunk that is disposed of for landing...
Trunk/service module disposal
Hope this is not too off topic, but I always disliked the fact that Dragon2 still has a trunk that is disposed off for landing. I think that an integrated trunk would not only safe money but would also result in a more buoyant craft that should theoretically already slow down higher in the atmosphere and thus would - to my understanding - put less stress on a TPS.
Quote from: Elmar Moelzer on 01/13/2018 10:24 pmHope this is not too off topic, but I always disliked the fact that Dragon2 still has a trunk that is disposed off for landing. I think that an integrated trunk would not only safe money but would also result in a more buoyant craft that should theoretically already slow down higher in the atmosphere and thus would - to my understanding - put less stress on a TPS.Every single space capsule (except shuttle, if you're being loose with "capsule") has disposed of the "service module" before reentry, which tells me that this is likely either a much harder problem than you imagine, totally unworkable for some reason, or just not at all worth it. My first guess would be that if you were going to try to do that, you would have to reengineer the trunk to support much higher loads than it currently sees and you would therefore lose significant performance for not that much gain. Not to mention that it would totally change the gumdrop profile of the capsule, etc. Also, you would have to figure out some sort of garage door operation to access unpressurized payloads in the trunk that are now behind your heat shield.
...Crew Dragon (aka Dragon 2) is still adhering to the KISS principle. The trunk from Cargo Dragon is beautiful in its simplicity so it was kept unaltered. Prime focus for Crew Dragon is focused on its primary function: fly crew. You don't go wasting money on something that doesn't need changing.