Author Topic: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan  (Read 252696 times)

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #960 on: 07/10/2018 03:40 PM »
That's less than half the "L" in EDL. New Shepard does the whole thing.
The "E" and the most of the "D" are in the wrong regime (far too low an initial velocity, no horizontal velocity) and with the wrong vehicle. None of the control required to fly to a pinpoint landing from a sub-orbital trajectory has been demonstrated (not much good if you can stick a landing if you're landing on a patch of open ocean 100km from the recovery vessel).

NG can do a entry and descent similar to NS (~Mach 4 max velocity) and still put a payload in orbit. The numbers I quoted are total velocity. The horizontal component effectively increases the scale height of the atmosphere, and makes generating lift easier, which actually means NG can have a higher total velocity with a lower heating rate.

And NS does get blown off course horizontally by upper level winds both on ascent and descent, which at the last test were over 100 kph. It has to navigate precisely back to the landing pad approach using its aerosurfaces and body lift during high supersonic/near hypersonic descent. Landing downrange is a very similar problem, just at a different scale.

It is a different vehicle and scale, but flight environment and duration is more critical than either of those. Clearly SpaceX testing at full scale didn't immediately translate to success in a radically different flight environment, full duration flight, with flight weight and low margin vehicles. NS is much closer to the same environment, weight, and margin as a low end New Glenn launch than Grasshopper/F9R-Dev1 were to F9.

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #961 on: 07/10/2018 04:12 PM »
You are conflating Falcon and Dragon payload masses, those are not at all the same thing.

No.

No to which?

No to you incorrectly describing what you quoted.  You said I was mixing the smaller missions with the ISS missions but I was not.  And I'm honestly kinda confused how you could think that because I was talking about the ISS missions as well.  Why would I be saying the ISS missions in addition to themselves?

I will say that scruitizing your argument did show some validity to the point.  Before I was just thinking that it was ~20 missions to make the landings work.  Now that I've checked it I see that it was actually 5 light missions, 5 nominal reusable capacity missions and the other stuff were just heavier missions where landing wasn't on the table.  So I will agree that it wont take 20 attempts.  However thinking they could do it in 2 or 3 is insanely, insanely optimistic.

Yes, I see what you meant and updated my post.

However, this goes to a point that Ron made below, one of definition: many flights that you call a crash, SpaceX would call a successful test flight. Most of them didn't have a barge to land on, and some didn't even have landing legs.

Only 3 F9 flights had any considerable margin and failed an actual landing attempt: CRS-5, CRS-6, and Jason-3, and Jason-3 even landed fine but collapsed after landing.

I fully expect Blue's first orbital launch attempt to feature the landing ship (which they have already obtained and are retrofitting), landing legs, and an all-up landing attempt (assuming the booster get though launch, staging, re-entry, and descent, which are hardly givens).

Offline woods170

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #962 on: 07/10/2018 04:12 PM »
In terms of flight regime, NS is much closer to Grasshopper than to F9.

That is incorrect. Grasshopper and F9R-Dev1 never left and reentered the atmosphere, never flew either up or down with any notable speed, never used active aerodynamic controls, and never restarted an engine in flight.

You are correct on everything, except the bolded parts:

Steered grid fins are very much active aerodynamic controls.

Hmm, I didn't know they added them. Most photos of F9R-Dev1 clearly show it flying without fins.

Either way, it wasn't flying fast enough for the aerosurfaces to do much.

Oh really? I suggest you review the video again, from the 1:20 minute mark forward. The grid fins rotate the rocket counter-clockwise 120 degrees and then reverse so that F9R-Dev1 eventually lands 90 rotated counter-clockwise from its lift-off position.
That may not be much in your perception but it proved the basic aerodynamic control principle behind the grid fins.
« Last Edit: 07/10/2018 04:14 PM by woods170 »

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #963 on: 07/10/2018 05:27 PM »
In terms of flight regime, NS is much closer to Grasshopper than to F9.

That is incorrect. Grasshopper and F9R-Dev1 never left and reentered the atmosphere, never flew either up or down with any notable speed, never used active aerodynamic controls, and never restarted an engine in flight.

You are correct on everything, except the bolded parts:

Steered grid fins are very much active aerodynamic controls.

Hmm, I didn't know they added them. Most photos of F9R-Dev1 clearly show it flying without fins.

Either way, it wasn't flying fast enough for the aerosurfaces to do much.

Oh really? I suggest you review the video again, from the 1:20 minute mark forward. The grid fins rotate the rocket counter-clockwise 120 degrees and then reverse so that F9R-Dev1 eventually lands 90 rotated counter-clockwise from its lift-off position.
That may not be much in your perception but it proved the basic aerodynamic control principle behind the grid fins.

I did see that. Compared to what the fins need to do during a hypersonic entry and descent, terminal roll control at a few m/s is not much. E.g. those fins clearly didn't work enough to run out of hydraulic fluid like CRS-5, and they don't look like they were retargeting the vehicle at the landing pad or maintaining any angle of attack.

Offline johnfwhitesell

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #964 on: 07/11/2018 02:54 AM »
Yes, I see what you meant and updated my post.

There was also the part where I talked about a Lagrange transfer mission and you replied as if I had been unaware that GTO missions take more energy then LEO.

However, this goes to a point that Ron made below, one of definition: many flights that you call a crash, SpaceX would call a successful test flight. Most of them didn't have a barge to land on, and some didn't even have landing legs.

It's possible for a successful test flight to be a crash.  In fact, it's the only demonstrated method of testing this particular technology.

Besides crashing rockets, what other way is there to actually learn this process?  "Being careful" isn't a process.  Is there some massive supercomputer wargaming every possible problem?  Soothsayers looking through entrails?  Ninja's kidnapping Musk's children and holding them for ransom to get SpaceX's software?

And also, for that matter, when is this going to take place anyways?  Blue Origin has been around for a long time but they didn't actually get serious funding until pretty darn recently.  You say they are going to take their time but ULA is already getting down to the wire to make the Vulcan deadline and NG is supposed to fly on the same engine just a few months later.  In fact it kind of looks to me like they are going faster then the move fast and break things kids over at SpaceX are going with the BFR.

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #965 on: 07/11/2018 01:11 PM »
It's possible for a successful test flight to be a crash.  In fact, it's the only demonstrated method of testing this particular technology.

Besides crashing rockets, what other way is there to actually learn this process?  "Being careful" isn't a process.

Blue has been crashing rockets. Two so far.

The process is redundancy and systems engineering. It's how NASA flew STS-1, the first flight of possibly the most complex machine ever built, with crew on board and managed to not kill them. SpaceX doesn't specialize in systems engineering because it slows down iterative development, but it's basically all that NASA does, and Blue appears to prefer that approach.

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And also, for that matter, when is this going to take place anyways?  Blue Origin has been around for a long time but they didn't actually get serious funding until pretty darn recently.  You say they are going to take their time but ULA is already getting down to the wire to make the Vulcan deadline and NG is supposed to fly on the same engine just a few months later.  In fact it kind of looks to me like they are going faster then the move fast and break things kids over at SpaceX are going with the BFR.

Blue has had serious funding for quite a while. Not $1 billion/year serious, but more than enough to get BE-4 development going back in 2011 and keep it going to the point where it's just about complete.

BE-4 is supposed to finish qualification late this year, and the first Vulcan and New Glenn flights about 2 years after that. I'd expect Blue to start building static test article structures soon, if they haven't already.

http://spacenews.com/blue-origin-expects-be-4-qualification-tests-to-be-done-by-years-end/

Offline edzieba

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #966 on: 07/11/2018 01:23 PM »
It is a different vehicle and scale, but flight environment and duration is more critical than either of those. Clearly SpaceX testing at full scale didn't immediately translate to success in a radically different flight environment, full duration flight, with flight weight and low margin vehicles.
Of SpaceX's failed landing attempts, all but one were in that final landing sequence. That one was Cassiope, the first ever attempt, which had insufficient roll authority (resolved with the grid-fins). All other failures were in the terminal landing phase, and mainly due to fine control response issues (valves and sensors).

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NS is much closer to the same environment, weight, and margin as a low end New Glenn launch than Grasshopper/F9R-Dev1 were to F9.
I'm sorry, I can't read that with a straight face. A vehicle with the same dimensions, tanks, engine, legs (for F9R Dev1), actuators and control surfaces to the flight version is less similar than a vehicle with a vastly smaller dimensions, different engine, different tanks (and different propellants!), different legs, different actuators, and different control surfaces?

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #967 on: 07/11/2018 02:37 PM »
It is a different vehicle and scale, but flight environment and duration is more critical than either of those. Clearly SpaceX testing at full scale didn't immediately translate to success in a radically different flight environment, full duration flight, with flight weight and low margin vehicles.
Of SpaceX's failed landing attempts, all but one were in that final landing sequence. That one was Cassiope, the first ever attempt, which had insufficient roll authority (resolved with the grid-fins). All other failures were in the terminal landing phase, and mainly due to fine control response issues (valves and sensors).
That was a controlled splashdown attempt, not a landing. I highly doubt Blue will ever try a controlled splashdown.

Most of the actual failed landings were due to SpaceX not having or not using - due to envelope pushing - enough available performance margins. CRS-5 (hydraulic fluid), SES-9 (propellant+sporty landing), Jason-3 (legs), Eutelsat (propellant+sporty landing), and the FH center core (starter fluid + sporty landing) were all directly or indirectly due to running out of something. Only the CRS-6 crash was due to a "valves and sensors" issue, and even something like that could be avoided with full single-fault tolerance over the entire flight profile.

Blue is much slower to push the performance envelope, and due to New Glenn's massive size has little incentive to do so before characterizing it's abilities at the lower end of the performance spectrum.
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NS is much closer to the same environment, weight, and margin as a low end New Glenn launch than Grasshopper/F9R-Dev1 were to F9.
I'm sorry, I can't read that with a straight face. A vehicle with the same dimensions, tanks, engine, legs (for F9R Dev1), actuators and control surfaces to the flight version is less similar than a vehicle with a vastly smaller dimensions, different engine, different tanks (and different propellants!), different legs, different actuators, and different control surfaces?

Size, of itself, doesn't matter. In fact, a larger vehicle is easier to land softly (as Blue has noted) because inertial forces like mass and inertial moment scale faster than destabilizing forces like gravity and wind.

The propellant tanks also don't appear to matter (landing structural loads are much lower than ascent), unless you you can point to a landing failure caused by a structural problem?

The engine is only important insofar as it's startup/shutdown transients and throttle and gimbal response characteristics are well known. These will be well characterized on the test stand, and Blue's habit of starting the engine early and hovering before landing greatly reduces the sensitivity to transients. SpaceX never tested startup on it's suborbital platforms, and they ended up having a few failures during flight tests.

The difference in propellants is irrelevant. Hydrogen has no advantages over methane for VTVL, but has many disadvantages.

New Shepard's legs appear to be much closer to New Glenn's in function, since they actually deploy. Neither F9R-Dev1 nor Grasshopper tested deployment, and the only leg-related failure was due to incomplete deployment. Another area where the "more similar" partial model missed a failure mode.

SpaceX actually had a greater functional difference in serosurfaces since their suborbital test platforms did not operate over the part of the flight regime where the aerosurfaces actually have significant control. New Shepard does operate over that part of the flight regime. While there is a significant risk associated with the new design of New Glenn's control surfaces, that risk mostly applies to the entry and descent and not the terminal landing where the fins lose most of their control authority - and the longer landing burn and translating hover reduce the need for fin authority.

What does matter is accurately modeling and then validating the model for in-flight engine restart, heating rate and stagnation temperature requirements, aerodynamic control during supersonic retroflight, and dynamic response during the terminal landing sequence. as well as real-time navigation and trajectory optimization, and position and altitude tracking needed to get a good guidance solution. All these can be done at subscale, but cannot be completely done at 1 km altitude and a few 10s of m/s velocity.

TDLR version: a booster returning from suborbital spaceflight is supersonic and unpowered immediately before the terminal landing sequence. A fully powered very subsonic flight like Dev1 can't model those critical starting conditions. New Shepard does, all the way up to ~Mach 4.
« Last Edit: 07/11/2018 02:37 PM by envy887 »

Offline johnfwhitesell

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #968 on: 07/11/2018 06:15 PM »
Size, of itself, doesn't matter. In fact, a larger vehicle is easier to land softly (as Blue has noted) because inertial forces like mass and inertial moment scale faster than destabilizing forces like gravity and wind.

It's easier if all else is equal.  But that isn't going to be the case until your program is mature.

For instance while you are launching rockets once each, the rate at which you can build them is extremely important.  If you think you know what went wrong but won't launch for another 6 months, that's 6 months you dont have any new information.

The process is redundancy and systems engineering. It's how NASA flew STS-1, the first flight of possibly the most complex machine ever built, with crew on board and managed to not kill them.

NASA did a test flight of the Space Shuttle 4 years before STS-1.


And this isn't even getting into the fact that a spaceplane is a hell of a lot easier of a task.  There have been at least 4 spaceplane designs I am aware of.  The goddamn Buran landed safely and that was while the Soviet space program was in desperate straits.
« Last Edit: 07/11/2018 06:16 PM by johnfwhitesell »

Offline Bob Shaw

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #969 on: 07/11/2018 06:38 PM »
Hey, don’t knock the USSR - their Shuttle program killed nobody. And, all their deaths were in the first decade of human spaceflight, not the fifth...

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #970 on: 07/11/2018 07:37 PM »
Size, of itself, doesn't matter. In fact, a larger vehicle is easier to land softly (as Blue has noted) because inertial forces like mass and inertial moment scale faster than destabilizing forces like gravity and wind.

It's easier if all else is equal.  But that isn't going to be the case until your program is mature.

For instance while you are launching rockets once each, the rate at which you can build them is extremely important.  If you think you know what went wrong but won't launch for another 6 months, that's 6 months you dont have any new information.

The process is redundancy and systems engineering. It's how NASA flew STS-1, the first flight of possibly the most complex machine ever built, with crew on board and managed to not kill them.

NASA did a test flight of the Space Shuttle 4 years before STS-1.

And this isn't even getting into the fact that a spaceplane is a hell of a lot easier of a task.  There have been at least 4 spaceplane designs I am aware of.  The goddamn Buran landed safely and that was while the Soviet space program was in desperate straits.

The landing of a spaceplane isn't particularly amazing, nor is a unpowered subsonic atmospheric glide test remotely comparable to a launch. It's the launch and reentry that's difficult. 3 of those spaceplane designs catastrophically failed and killed their crews on ascent and/or reentry (X-15, STS, SS2).

Buran was an impressive accomplishment, but it only flew once. It's impossible to tell how reliable it would have been.

The same applies to VTVL rocket boosters; although the landing is a bit more sporty than your typical spaceplane, ascent and reentry are still much harder.

Offline johnfwhitesell

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #971 on: 07/12/2018 02:54 AM »
The landing of a spaceplane isn't particularly amazing,

Then your example seems to be showing that in fact Blue is NOT following in the footsteps of STS, since NASA was far more careful when doing something not particularly amazing then Blue is with pretty much the hardest task out there.

Blue has had serious funding for quite a while. Not $1 billion/year serious, but more than enough to get BE-4 development going back in 2011 and keep it going to the point where it's just about complete.

I ask where the funding is for a very expensive project and you reply with they have had some amount of money for some amount of time.

SpaceX had burnt through around a billion dollars by 2008.  They didn't make their first landing until 2015.  In what year did Blue Origin pass the billion dollar mark?  I think it was 2016.

BE-4 is supposed to finish qualification late this year, and the first Vulcan and New Glenn flights about 2 years after that. I'd expect Blue to start building static test article structures soon, if they haven't already.

Two years is an appropriately gradatium timeline for building their first orbital rocket.  So when do they work on the reusable parts?  AFAIK they dont have significant staff working on it right now.
« Last Edit: 07/12/2018 02:56 AM by johnfwhitesell »

Offline Star One

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #972 on: 07/12/2018 08:02 PM »
New article from SN.

Blue Origin to offer dual launch with New Glenn after fifth mission

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JAKARTA, Indonesia — Blue Origin will begin flying two customers on the same New Glenn rocket after the launch vehicle has performed five missions with solo customers, according to Ted McFarland, Blue Origin’s commercial director of Asia-Pacific business.

“Our first five are all dedicated missions as we release margin and prove out our operational reusability concept,” McFarland said July 4 at the APSAT 2018 conference here. “But starting from launch six on, we will have a dual-manifesting capability.”

https://spacenews.com/blue-origin-to-offer-dual-launch-with-new-glenn-after-fifth-mission/

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #973 on: 07/12/2018 08:11 PM »
New article from SN.

Blue Origin to offer dual launch with New Glenn after fifth mission

Quote
JAKARTA, Indonesia — Blue Origin will begin flying two customers on the same New Glenn rocket after the launch vehicle has performed five missions with solo customers, according to Ted McFarland, Blue Origin’s commercial director of Asia-Pacific business.

“Our first five are all dedicated missions as we release margin and prove out our operational reusability concept,” McFarland said July 4 at the APSAT 2018 conference here. “But starting from launch six on, we will have a dual-manifesting capability.”

https://spacenews.com/blue-origin-to-offer-dual-launch-with-new-glenn-after-fifth-mission/

And

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By launch six, New Glenn will have a direct to geosynchronous-orbit capability of 13 metric tons, McFarland said.

That has to be a typo. New Glenn is big, but not THAT big.

Offline Aurora

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #974 on: 07/12/2018 08:54 PM »
That has been New Glenn stated performance for over a year,  13 metric tonnes to GTO.    They will be able to dual manifest two satellites to GTO, with an average of 6 metric tonnes, and approximately 1 metric tonne dispenser/adapter/separation system.   

Offline Aurora

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #975 on: 07/12/2018 09:05 PM »
What was really interesting is the statement that they will launch eight times per year.   They have been projecting twelve time per year.    AND, Blue Origin New Glenn launch service will not wait for a delayed payloads (satellite) and will switch to a dedicated mission and still charge that customer the same price.   Cadence is their primary objective for delivery of satellites - great proposition.   

Right now, Arianespace is delaying a lower position customer due to the upper position customer satellite delay (GSAT11).   The lower berth customer is delayed waiting for the GSAT 11 satellite to be ready, or to switch co-passenger assignments, all controlled by Arianespace.   Over two years ago, Intelsat could not wait for their co-passenger for their EPIC satellite, and paid an undisclosed premium to launch dedicated on Ariane 5.

Blue Origin is making a bold statement and promise to customer that the price contracted will be the same whether they launch dedicated or dual launch . . . and schedule will be maintained.

Offline johnfwhitesell

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #976 on: 07/12/2018 09:24 PM »
That has to be a typo. New Glenn is big, but not THAT big.

That's about what one should expect from a 45 ton to LEO launch and a 450 isp vacuum engine.

This does seem like a smart strategy to me.  Reducing the need for electric propulsion on geostationary satellites is the sort of thing that gives them a selling point compared to the other LH2 second stage rockets.

That has been New Glenn stated performance for over a year,  13 metric tonnes to GTO.    They will be able to dual manifest two satellites to GTO, with an average of 6 metric tonnes, and approximately 1 metric tonne dispenser/adapter/separation system.   

That has been the stated performance since after the switch from BE-4U to BE-3U?

Offline gongora

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #977 on: 07/12/2018 09:26 PM »
The Blue web site says 13 tons to GTO.  The article says 13 tons to GSO.  Those are very different.

Offline johnfwhitesell

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #978 on: 07/12/2018 09:28 PM »
The Blue web site says 13 tons to GTO.  The article says 13 tons to GSO.  Those are very different.

Yes they really, really are.  However I was under the impression that the website figures hadn't changed since they switched the engines.

Offline envy887

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Re: New Glenn: Blue Origin Announcement of Orbital Rocket Plan
« Reply #979 on: 07/13/2018 12:10 AM »
The Blue web site says 13 tons to GTO.  The article says 13 tons to GSO.  Those are very different.

Yes they really, really are.  However I was under the impression that the website figures hadn't changed since they switched the engines.

Blue did say the performance increased, but not exactly how much.

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