Author Topic: Merits of a flyable crew vehicle on a Jupiter variant  (Read 2116 times)

Offline JohnFornaro

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Deftly taking the hint from:

...The first part of your post is not related to DIRECT, so I'm hesitant to answer here.  But I will.  There is a significant aerodynamic difference between a cargo container (sidemount) and a winged vehicle such as the Shuttle.  The budgetary issues forced NASA to drop the concept of a flyback booster.

I ask the question here.  Are there any merits to the idea of a winged crew only reusable flyback vehicle mounted on top of a Jupiter variant?

Such a vehicle, in my mind, would be loosely based on X-33 or X-37 concepts.  Such a vehicle would be new in almost every aspect, and this probably will be raised as an objection.  At the same time, it can be said that the Ares design is also new.  In any case, my casual discussions with a few people here and there indicate that it should be possible.

I realize that some type of Orion capsule is atop a Jupiter, but it is not flyable.  I believe there is debate on its reusability as well.  Part of what I'm asking is maybe about national prestige, and what the taxpayer might want.  This might depend on whether the taxpayer's judgement could be considered sound, given all the facts.  The dismissive common characterization of the new capsule as Apollo on steroids is easily understood by many people.
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Offline Lampyridae

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Re: Merits of a flyable crew vehicle on a Jupiter variant
« Reply #1 on: 04/09/2010 10:36 PM »
A biconic design would serve almost all purposes almost as well as a winged lander, such as cross-range performance, g loads, for a much neater integration (no pesky aero loads etc). Frankly, I think it would just be too expensive to justify.
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Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Merits of a flyable crew vehicle on a Jupiter variant
« Reply #2 on: 04/10/2010 01:51 AM »
A flyable crew vehicle is the DreamChaser.


On top of a Jupiter there is also sufficient spare mass for an Earth Departure Stage or cargo and a booster motor.

http://www.spacedev.com/spacedev_advanced_systems.php

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dream_Chaser_(Spacecraft)

Offline Mike D

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Re: Merits of a flyable crew vehicle on a Jupiter variant
« Reply #3 on: 04/10/2010 08:11 PM »
I think it's a great idea.  The Space Shuttle is expensive because its a big, multi-role vehicle.  I think reusibility should start with a small, seven-person-and-their-luggage winged spacecraft using existing shuttle tech on a very small scale. The DreamChaser, or some sort of X-38 variant.

Fly it (in conjunction with Orion, etc), and go from there.

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: Merits of a flyable crew vehicle on a Jupiter variant
« Reply #4 on: 04/13/2010 06:00 PM »
Actually, now that I think about it, maybe I'm trying to ask:  Is there any merit in the idea such that there are actual proposals?  Because without actual proposals, the official consensus would be that it lacks merit.
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Offline JasonAW3

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Re: Merits of a flyable crew vehicle on a Jupiter variant
« Reply #5 on: 05/01/2010 09:06 PM »
Actually, now that I think about it, maybe I'm trying to ask:  Is there any merit in the idea such that there are actual proposals?  Because without actual proposals, the official consensus would be that it lacks merit.

I would say that Lockheed's original proposal and the Dream Chaser, (which uses a combination of Shuttle and Spaceship one tech) would qualify as proposals.

     And, on another note; from what I have read, it seems to me that a biconic spacecraft design has a vastly smaller cross range capibility tjan a flyback spacecraft.   The Delta Clipper would have been an exception to this, as it would have used a powered descent rather than an unpowered descent.

     I am curious though; Has anyone considered interlocking TPS coated upper body flaps that could be extended into the oncoming air for attitude control, in addition to the trusters around the base of biconic designed capsules?
     I imagine that it could be a mass saver, but perhaps it would also create so much drag that it destabilizes the craft during re-entry.

Jason
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Offline Lars_J

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Re: Merits of a flyable crew vehicle on a Jupiter variant
« Reply #6 on: 05/02/2010 12:05 AM »
Actually, now that I think about it, maybe I'm trying to ask:  Is there any merit in the idea such that there are actual proposals?  Because without actual proposals, the official consensus would be that it lacks merit.

I would say that Lockheed's original proposal and the Dream Chaser, (which uses a combination of Shuttle and Spaceship one tech) would qualify as proposals.

Please quantify that statement. Dreamchaser seems to be only powerpoint and vaporware at this stage, so it would be useful to *know* what is shuttle-derived and SS1 (!!) derived.
« Last Edit: 05/02/2010 12:06 AM by Lars_J »

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