Author Topic: Speculation into what future versions of Dragon will involve  (Read 69386 times)

Offline ciscosdad

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Given the current cargo dragon is Version 1, and the crewed model is Version 2, what is known or can be inferred about the 3rd version?
Ref the Aeronautical Society lecture thread.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=30381.210

The info I have gleaned is:
7 crew (still)
Methane/LOX  Raptor engine Integrated
Cooler shape (whatever that means.... I speculate it looks more akin to the double clamshells of the recent Curiosity entry vehicle)
Integral cargo bay(?)  ie no trunk.

What have you gleaned for recent revelations?
Is anyone game to speculate?
All up mass? Delta V? Cargo capacity? Endurance?
« Last Edit: 11/25/2012 09:32 pm by Chris Bergin »

Offline sanman

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Re: Dragon version 3 (Speculation)
« Reply #1 on: 11/25/2012 07:02 am »
What is Dragon3's main mission? Is it meant for Mars, or mainly for Earth?

Offline mlindner

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Re: Dragon version 3 (Speculation)
« Reply #2 on: 11/25/2012 12:55 pm »
Absolutely nothing is known about what dragon version 3 may or may not have or heck, if it even will exist. This topic shouldn't exist yet.
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Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Dragon version 3 (Speculation)
« Reply #3 on: 11/25/2012 05:10 pm »
Purely FWIW, I understood that the next-gen design Musk was talking about was nicknamed 'Dragon-2' for ease of reference whilst the crewed Dragon is most properly termed 'Dragonrider' and could be described as 'Dragon 1.5' due to its structural and subsystem commonality with the robot cargo freighter.
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Offline Lars_J

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Re: Dragon version 3 (Speculation)
« Reply #4 on: 11/25/2012 06:35 pm »
Nope. If you combine several of the Dragon 2 quotes from Musk, the most logical interpretation is that it simply is crew Dragon. The SD thrusters and legs will account for the different appearance.

Nobody has talked about a Dragon 3. Stop inventing stuff out of nothing

Offline alienmike

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Re: Dragon version 3 (Speculation)
« Reply #5 on: 11/25/2012 07:09 pm »
I think this thread is worthy of discussion - Musk made it sound in the video as if the next Dragon would look nothing like the current Dragon. I was surprised when I came to this forum and found only discussion on MCT/Raptor with such a major revelation. Yes, this is worthy of some speculation.

Its been bothering me for a while now. Do they actually have room for the SuperDracos and the fuel for them and for the landing legs in what looks to me to be a rather smallish form factor? Is it actually possible/a good idea, to extend the landing legs through the heat shield? My immediate thoughts were that they are looking at a completely different shape. Something that could handle much bulkier, less dense, cargo as well; including more people. And a shape that can handle all of the components necessary for a ground landing.

So I'm thinking they do a 'stretch' and give themselves more room with a more cylindrical shape and add PICAX up one of the sides like they show on the re-entry/re-usability video of the second stage.

Any thoughts on what shape you think might favor the known requirements?

(First post...)

Online Chris Bergin

Thread renamed and trimmed.

Online meekGee

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There is no Dragon 3 of course, but there is a valid question on whether the first ISS crew Dragon will be the same as the "cool looking" or "Spaceship"-y Dragon.

I think the nomenclature of calling the "cool looking"/"Spaceship"-y thing Dragon 2 and calling the first ISS crew Dragon 1.5 makes sense, and so the question is whether 1.5 exists independent of 2.0.

I'll copy my post from the general thread onto here then.
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Online meekGee

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EDIT:  Originally posted in the general thread

So regarding Dragons....

This is actually very obvious, and has been bugging me for a while.

SpaceX are very early to put up engineering development hardware on display (F1, F9, Dragon).

Also, once they started talking publicly about powered recovery of F9S1, Grasshopper was up in no time, and is now even flying.

They have Dragon, and they've been testing SuperDracos for quite some time now.

...  so where's Dragon 2?   There was a mockup on display, but nothing more.

I think all of this got reconciled when Elon said - "We didn't really know what we were doing with Dragon 1" and "Dragon 2 will look really cool", etc.

I think once Elon decides on a change in direction, he doesn't waste time on sunk-cost projects just because they're half-way through the engineering pipeline.

My tea-leaf reading from this is that the possibility that Dragon 2 has been greatly revised away from Dragon 1 + SuperDracos, and the conspicuously missing Dragon/Draco test-bed hopping around McGregor are in agreement here.
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Offline mlindner

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There is no Dragon 3 of course, but there is a valid question on whether the first ISS crew Dragon will be the same as the "cool looking" or "Spaceship"-y Dragon.

I think the nomenclature of calling the "cool looking"/"Spaceship"-y thing Dragon 2 and calling the first ISS crew Dragon 1.5 makes sense, and so the question is whether 1.5 exists independent of 2.0.

I'll copy my post from the general thread onto here then.

Elon Musk with the recent talks has numerous times referred to Dragon 2 as the crewed dragon that will go to the ISS. There is no dragon 1.5. There is current cargo dragon (dragon 1) and crewed dragon/dragonrider (dragon 2). These are the only two versions that have been talked about.
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Offline Avron

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Question .. is a heart shape stable for re-entry ? vs say a cone or sphere 

Offline ciscosdad

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Dragon versions:


Maybe we should agree to the version number?
Can we agree on:
Ver 1.0 is the existing Cargo dragon
Ver 1.5 is the crewed version of 1.0
Ver 2 is the "cool looking spaceship"

There is no version 3

Thanks for the rename Chris. Much more appropriate.


Offline Jim

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Dragon versions:


Maybe we should agree to the version number?
Can we agree on:
Ver 1.0 is the existing Cargo dragon
Ver 1.5 is the crewed version of 1.0
Ver 2 is the "cool looking spaceship"

There is no version 3

Thanks for the rename Chris. Much more appropriate.

1.5 and 2 are the same

Offline Mongo62

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I must agree with Jim here, there are only two versions of Dragon currently flying (or currently being designed):

Dragon 1 -- the current unmanned cargo transport
Dragon 2 -- the currently planned manned spacecraft

However, I also think that it is likely that Dragon 2 has undergone a thorough redesign in the past year, and no longer resembles the known mock-up.  The hints we have had from Musk indicated that the SuperDracos have been shifted from their previous 90-degree spacing, that the landing gear has been modified from the mock-up, and that it will be much more "cool looking" in appearance.  He gives as a reason for the change, that SpaceX did not really know what they were doing when designing Dragon 1, but they do now.

It will be years before Dragon 2 flies in any case.  SpaceX has the time and resources to do a complete redesign if they feel that it will result in a superior spacecraft.
« Last Edit: 11/25/2012 10:48 pm by Mongo62 »

Offline go4mars

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Can we agree on:
Ver 1.0 is the existing Cargo dragon
Ver 1.5 is the crewed version of 1.0
Ver 2 is the "cool looking spaceship"

1.5 and 2 are the same
Are version 1 and version 2 the same diameter?  Mars One suggests no.  I'm inclined to suspect dragon 2 will be larger diameter in addition to "cooler looking".
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Offline Patchouli

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I must agree with Jim here, there are only two versions of Dragon currently flying (or currently being designed):

Dragon 1 -- the current unmanned cargo transport
Dragon 2 -- the currently planned manned spacecraft

However, I also think that it is likely that Dragon 2 has undergone a thorough redesign in the past year, and no longer resembles the known mock-up.  The hints we have had from Musk indicated that the SuperDracos have been shifted from their previous 90-degree spacing, that the landing gear has been modified from the mock-up, and that it will be much more "cool looking" in appearance.  He gives as a reason for the change, that SpaceX did not really know what they were doing when designing Dragon 1, but they do now.

It will be years before Dragon 2 flies in any case.  SpaceX has the time and resources to do a complete redesign if they feel that it will result in a superior spacecraft.

It's not that unusual for a spacecraft to under go a lot of changes during it's development.
Just look at the LEM and this was before it's first flight.

Things I expect to see different with Dragon 2 same basic shape but likely changes in window location ,seating arrangements, and changes to the landing gear vs the art work what has been shown.

The first crewed version may not even perform a vertical powered landing and instead would simply splash down like the cargo version.

They do have competition you know so the rev 1.0 crew vehicle most likely won't be too different from what is flying.
« Last Edit: 11/25/2012 10:59 pm by Patchouli »

Offline billh

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I agree with those who have said these are all just names for the crewed Dragon they are working on for CCiCap. The outer mold line will be different because of the Super Dracos, and that is a substantial difference. I'm wondering if they might do the same thing with the landing legs. Rather than come through the heat shield (from where?) maybe they will be side mounted and extend at an angle, with some sort of aerodynamic fairing like the Super Dracos will have. Collectively that would cause the spacecraft to look quite a bit different, and be a substantial departure from a simple conical section. It is also probably more of a departure from the standard conical section than they were willing to consider for their initial design. That would be consistent, in my view, with Musk's comments about Dragon V2 in his RAeS talk.

Offline go4mars

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... landing legs. Rather than come through the heat shield (from where?) maybe they will be side mounted and extend at an angle, with some sort of aerodynamic fairing like the Super Dracos will have.
If the fold-down landing legs double as control surfaces, access ramps, and solar array holders, I'll have to high-5 someone somewhere. 
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Offline Lars_J

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Can we agree on:
Ver 1.0 is the existing Cargo dragon
Ver 1.5 is the crewed version of 1.0
Ver 2 is the "cool looking spaceship"

1.5 and 2 are the same
Are version 1 and version 2 the same diameter?  Mars One suggests no.  I'm inclined to suspect dragon 2 will be larger diameter in addition to "cooler looking".

No. They will be the same diameter, there has been no indication of otherwise. "Mars One" does not count - it has little to do with reality.

Offline mlindner

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Can we agree on:
Ver 1.0 is the existing Cargo dragon
Ver 1.5 is the crewed version of 1.0
Ver 2 is the "cool looking spaceship"

1.5 and 2 are the same
Are version 1 and version 2 the same diameter?  Mars One suggests no.  I'm inclined to suspect dragon 2 will be larger diameter in addition to "cooler looking".

From a friend who interned at SpaceX:
During one of Elon Musk's company employee Q&A sessions he apparently runs, someone in the room asked him about Mars One (this was soon after their announcement, including that they were using SpaceX). Elon had never heard of them. Employee explained their mission to him. Elon responded with something along the lines of "Our rockets are always waiting."

tl;dr: Mars One is not a source for any kind of imagery for SpaceX craft.
« Last Edit: 11/26/2012 01:38 am by mlindner »
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