Author Topic: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)  (Read 6735 times)

Offline CameronD

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1386
  • Melbourne, Australia
    • Norton Consultants
  • Liked: 448
  • Likes Given: 330
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #40 on: 07/30/2018 03:22 AM »
I take your point but I think it's a storm in a teacup: the SS2 flight rate will never be high enough to match the rate of pollutants pumped out by any major cities' idling cars stuck in traffic jams, every single day.

Perhaps... but that's a bit like saying it's okay for old-school coal-fired power stations to pump pollutants into the atmosphere because there's only a few of them.  I'm no greenie and I don't disagree with you, but Joe Public (and social media) just might, worst case forcing VG customers to reconsider or be forever branded Environmental Saboteurs.

In this media-frenzied world we live in, perception is everything:  if it looks bad, it probably is.  It'll be interesting (to me at any rate) to see how VG, and RB specifically, handle this when the time comes.
« Last Edit: 07/30/2018 03:31 AM by CameronD »
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Online MATTBLAK

  • Elite Veteran & 'J.A.F.A'
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4311
  • 'Space Cadets' Let us; UNITE!! (crickets chirping)
  • New Zealand
  • Liked: 1096
  • Likes Given: 2092
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #41 on: 07/30/2018 05:58 AM »
You're right; I was just spinning it a way that might be useful - and truthful - should one need to put a positive spin that defends space travel. It's worth a shot, if you ever need to...
"Those who can't, Blog".   'Space Cadets' of the World - Let us UNITE!! (crickets chirping)

Offline Kabloona

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4303
  • Velocitas Eradico
  • Fortress of Solitude
  • Liked: 2533
  • Likes Given: 524
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #42 on: 07/30/2018 05:23 PM »
I take your point but I think it's a storm in a teacup: the SS2 flight rate will never be high enough to match the rate of pollutants pumped out by any major cities' idling cars stuck in traffic jams, every single day.

Perhaps... but that's a bit like saying it's okay for old-school coal-fired power stations to pump pollutants into the atmosphere because there's only a few of them.  I'm no greenie and I don't disagree with you, but Joe Public (and social media) just might, worst case forcing VG customers to reconsider or be forever branded Environmental Saboteurs.

In this media-frenzied world we live in, perception is everything:  if it looks bad, it probably is.  It'll be interesting (to me at any rate) to see how VG, and RB specifically, handle this when the time comes.

Back in the late 1980's when the Air Force was planning for the Advanced Launch System (ALS) vehicle, there was a concern that exhaust from the solid propellant boosters would become an environmental issue in Florida (the ammonium perchlorate oxidizer contains chlorine, which results in acidic exhaust gases like HCL). So the Air Force did research on developing "clean" solid propellants for ALS, but those efforts didn't amount to much and ALS was cencelled.

And no one in Florida seemed to care that Shuttle, Titan, Atlas, etc, all kept pumping out huge volumes of acidic "non-clean" solid rocket booster exhaust, so the pre-emptory concern turned out to be a non-issue.

Ironically, it's only the white aluminum oxide in SRB exhaust that makes it look "clean." If  aluminum oxide was black, it's probably a good bet that SRB exhaust wouldn't be viewed so benignly.

Compared to the large volumes of acidic exhaust from the many large SRB's still being used on launchers around the world, a tiny bit of black smoke from SS2 is one very small potato.
« Last Edit: 07/30/2018 05:57 PM by Kabloona »

Offline CameronD

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1386
  • Melbourne, Australia
    • Norton Consultants
  • Liked: 448
  • Likes Given: 330
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #43 on: 07/30/2018 11:15 PM »
Back in the late 1980's when the Air Force was planning for the Advanced Launch System (ALS) vehicle, there was a concern that exhaust from the solid propellant boosters would become an environmental issue in Florida (the ammonium perchlorate oxidizer contains chlorine, which results in acidic exhaust gases like HCL). So the Air Force did research on developing "clean" solid propellants for ALS, but those efforts didn't amount to much and ALS was cencelled.

And no one in Florida seemed to care that Shuttle, Titan, Atlas, etc, all kept pumping out huge volumes of acidic "non-clean" solid rocket booster exhaust, so the pre-emptory concern turned out to be a non-issue.

Ironically, it's only the white aluminum oxide in SRB exhaust that makes it look "clean." If  aluminum oxide was black, it's probably a good bet that SRB exhaust wouldn't be viewed so benignly.

Compared to the large volumes of acidic exhaust from the many large SRB's still being used on launchers around the world, a tiny bit of black smoke from SS2 is one very small potato.

Good point.  So long as the billowing white exhaust dissipates into-non-visible particles quickly enough, I suppose, to the viewing public, it might as well be steam.  :)

There's also the Wow Factor to consider here: Maybe VG are banking on Joe Public being so stunned by the spectacle (and the paint job) that they won't notice a tiny wisp of black smoke trailing behind...
« Last Edit: 07/30/2018 11:17 PM by CameronD »
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine - however, this is not necessarily a good idea. It is hard to be sure where they are
going to land, and it could be dangerous sitting under them as they fly overhead.

Offline Rocket Science

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8636
  • NASA Educator Astronaut Candidate Applicant 2002
  • Liked: 2681
  • Likes Given: 6979
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #44 on: 07/30/2018 11:26 PM »
With the rate that the EPA is being dismantled maybe they'll be no one to come after VG.... Just sayin'...
« Last Edit: 07/30/2018 11:27 PM by Rocket Science »
"The laws of physics are unforgiving"
~Rob: Physics instructor, Aviator, Vintage auto racer

Offline bad_astra

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1849
  • Liked: 239
  • Likes Given: 289
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #45 on: 08/01/2018 02:36 PM »
Apparently you like Jonathan McDowell's argument is that the von Karman line should be lowered to 80 km.

So does George Whitesides CEO of Virgin Galactic:  “[McDowell] lays out a solid case that … a reasonable position for ‘where space begins’ is around 80 kilometers. That's consistent with the precedent set by NASA and the Air Force, which award astronaut wings to X-15 pilots who fly above 80 kilometers, a recognition we have always respected.”

Of course, the US Air Force awarded "astronaut wings" to pilots who flew above 50 miles, which is 80.47 km, but a nice round number in quaint old Imperial units.

But their original goal was >100 km, the internationally recognized boundary in SI units.
And Blue Origin, (or Blorigin as their commentator pronounces it) just "sprinted" to 120 km.

My opinions on it are irrelevant. I was pointing out that when they hit 80km AGC they crew will qualify for FAA Commercial Astronaut wings. Right now Brian Binnie and Mike Melville are the only who have those wings.
« Last Edit: 08/01/2018 02:36 PM by bad_astra »
"Contact Light" -Buzz Aldrin

Offline bad_astra

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1849
  • Liked: 239
  • Likes Given: 289
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #46 on: 08/01/2018 02:42 PM »
No full flight video.   Maybe she was shaking like hell like the last flight and virgin are trying not to scare away customers.

Well, she was certainly pumping out smoke!  In these days of environmental consciousness, if they don't want to scare away customers they're going to have to do something about that exhaust plume.
 
Space tourists aren't going to give a crap about that. If they're interested enough, they know rockets make exhaust. It's part of the appeal. The diesels in their yachts most likely make a bit of smoke as well, but they're probably not staring off the stern.

If they want to spend a few minutes in the mesosphere right now it's rockets or a balloon, and no one is offering mesospheric balloon adventures to tourists right now.
"Contact Light" -Buzz Aldrin

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6362
  • UK
    • Plan 28
  • Liked: 5898
  • Likes Given: 1700
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #47 on: 08/08/2018 06:08 AM »


Quote
Published on 7 Aug 2018
On July 26th, 2018 VSS Unity completed its third rocket-powered test flight, a key step forward the path to space.

Julia Hunter, Virgin Galactic Vice President and longtime employee, gives us a behind-the-scenes look into her life as a program leader, astrophysics scholar and space mom working to realize a longtime dream of opening commercial spaceflight to citizens and science. Join Julia as she narrates a key test flight that surpassed 170,800 feet, reaching Mach 2.47. VSS Unity was piloted by Dave Mackay and Mike “Sooch” Masucci, with pilots Kelly Latimer and Todd Ericson in carrier aircraft VMS Eve. Read more at:
https://www.virgingalactic.com/articles/Into-the-Mesosphere-at-Mach-2/
« Last Edit: 08/08/2018 06:14 AM by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline AndyE

  • Member
  • Posts: 20
  • Liked: 30
  • Likes Given: 18
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #48 on: 08/13/2018 03:54 PM »
A very detailed profile of Virgin Galactic pilot Mark Stucky in the New Yorker, also serving as an overview of the company's progress to date.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/08/20/virgin-galactics-rocket-man

Acronyms are the enemy of understanding. Why not spell them out and let everyone understand what you are saying?

Offline Andy Bandy

  • Member
  • Posts: 65
  • California
  • Liked: 28
  • Likes Given: 1
Re: Space Ship Two - General Thread (4)
« Reply #49 on: 08/16/2018 08:30 PM »
No full flight video.   Maybe she was shaking like hell like the last flight and virgin are trying not to scare away customers.

Well, she was certainly pumping out smoke!  In these days of environmental consciousness, if they don't want to scare away customers they're going to have to do something about that exhaust plume.
 

Branson is Mr. Save the Oceans/Stop Global Warming so this is a bit embarrassing. Or it ought to be. His deep concern for the environment hasn't hindered his plans to launch three new massive cruise ships, which are not good for oceans or the atmosphere.

VG has always said emissions from SS2 are no worse than roundtrip first-class airplane ticket from NY to London. Of course, you're burning for a minute as opposed to hours. And they've never explained how they reached that conclusion. And the emissions during flight don't include the carbon produced manufacturing the nitrous oxide, which is substantial.

Not that any of this matters, really. In this New Yorker story Branson dismisses 14 years of bad predictions about SS2 as just an example of his optimism and posits that it somehow inspires the workers. The man's great at spin.
 


Tags: