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Waspie_Dwarf

Bezos claims spaceship success

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Waspie_Dwarf

New Shepard: Bezos claims success on second spaceship flight

The Amazon.com entrepreneur Jeff Bezos has claimed success on the second flight of his New Shepard spaceship.

Intended eventually to carry people just above the atmosphere, the re-usable vehicle launched from west Texas on Monday with no-one aboard.

Both parts of New Shepard - the capsule and its propulsion unit - landed safely, Mr Bezos' company said.

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Merc14

I hadn't realized he had gotten this far with his rocket program! Well done with the landing of the propulsion system. This reminds me of the early history of aviation with many aircraft producers taking different paths to accomplish the goals and missions. Immensely more expensive however

Edited by Merc14

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Hammerclaw

Certainly makes more sense than trying to land it on a barge bobbing about in the ocean. Before space was politicized, it was assumed by many that private enterprise would get us into orbit.

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Waspie_Dwarf

Certainly makes more sense than trying to land it on a barge bobbing about in the ocean.

Landing on a barge in the ocean makes perfect sense if you understand why it is being done.

New Shepard is just a sub-orbital rocket it just goes up 100 km and then returns to the ground.

What SpaceX are attempting to do is recover the first stage of an orbital launch vehicle. As such they are attempting to recover a rocket stage which is larger, has a much higher velocity and a substantial horizontal flight path over the ocean.

The barge landings are the first stage in a development programme that will eventually see the Falcon 9 first stage turn around at supersonic speeds, change direction and land back at the launch site. That manoeuvre is highly complex and highly difficult. Like all good test flight programmes SpaceX are taking things step by step. Once they have perfected the landing then they will attempt the complicated return procedure.

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Hammerclaw

Landing on a barge in the ocean makes perfect sense if you understand why it is being done.

New Shepard is just a sub-orbital rocket it just goes up 100 km and then returns to the ground.

What SpaceX are attempting to do is recover the first stage of an orbital launch vehicle. As such they are attempting to recover a rocket stage which is larger, has a much higher velocity and a substantial horizontal flight path over the ocean.

The barge landings are the first stage in a development programme that will eventually see the Falcon 9 first stage turn around at supersonic speeds, change direction and land back at the launch site. That manoeuvre is highly complex and highly difficult. Like all good test flight programmes SpaceX are taking things step by step. Once they have perfected the landing then they will attempt the complicated return procedure.

Yeah, I know it's for safety reasons. I just think that solid ground, such as an uninhabited atoll would serve the same purpose and be an easier target. Fewer random factors.

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Waspie_Dwarf

Historic Rocket Landing

Blue Origin’s New Shepard space vehicle successfully flew to space, reaching its planned test altitude of 329,839 feet (100.5 kilometers) before executing a historic landing back at the launch site in West Texas.

Credit: Blue Origin

Source: Blue Origin - YouTube Channel

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Merc14

I don't care how high they went, they did it! Thanks for that video Waspie, I hope the success continues.

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Waspie_Dwarf

I don't care how high they went

How high they went is fairly important. If the New Shepard hadn't reached an altitude of 100 Km then it wouldn't be a spacecraft.

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pallidin

Yeah, I recall seeing the vid on the 'net.

Very impressive, to be sure!!

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Talion78

Very, very impressive....

The rocket comes in a nice soft landing the pod comes down with a thump.....lol

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highdesert50

Historic ... and about 46 years ago a couple of guys piloted a rocket powered craft to the surface of the moon. The Eagle has landed.

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Saitung

Utterly amazing, but not so historic, at least not publicly. I haven't seen anything like that since the early NERVA rocket re-enty tests back in the late 1990's.

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Noteverythingisaconspiracy

Utterly amazing, but not so historic, at least not publicly. I haven't seen anything like that since the early NERVA rocket re-enty tests back in the late 1990's.

The main difference between the Bezos tests and what you descibe is that this actually happened in the real world. What you descibe never happened and is either fantasy or a case of misidentification. (I think the latter)

The NERVA project was cancelled 1972 and never produces any flight hardware. Every NERVA test was ground based. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NERVA

I have a hunch that you might be thinking of the DC-X, which is the only rocket powered descent I can think of from the 90's https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McDonnell_Douglas_DC-X.

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TheGreatBeliever

Think space travel will soon be a common thing in the near future. After that comes space colonisation

Edited by TheGreatBeliever

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Waspie_Dwarf

Launch. Land. Repeat.

The very same New Shepard booster that flew above the Karman line and then landed vertically at its launch site last November has now flown and landed again, demonstrating reuse. This time, New Shepard reached an apogee of 333,582 feet (101.7 kilometers) before both capsule and booster gently returned to Earth for recovery and reuse.

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Waspie_Dwarf

Launch. Land. Repeat.

Our vision: millions of people living and working in space. You can’t get there by throwing the hardware away. Watch the re-flight!

Credit: Blue Origin

Source: Blue Origin - YouTube Channel

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crandles57

Landing on a barge in the ocean makes perfect sense if you understand why it is being done.

New Shepard is just a sub-orbital rocket it just goes up 100 km and then returns to the ground.

What SpaceX are attempting to do is recover the first stage of an orbital launch vehicle. As such they are attempting to recover a rocket stage which is larger, has a much higher velocity and a substantial horizontal flight path over the ocean.

The barge landings are the first stage in a development programme that will eventually see the Falcon 9 first stage turn around at supersonic speeds, change direction and land back at the launch site. That manoeuvre is highly complex and highly difficult. Like all good test flight programmes SpaceX are taking things step by step. Once they have perfected the landing then they will attempt the complicated return procedure.

>"Once they have perfected the landing then they will attempt the complicated return procedure."

Except the first successful SpaceX landing was back near the launch site on solid ground so they did attempt the 'complicated' return procedure before they perfected the landing.

Why complicated return procedure? Guidance is complicated sure but they have to be able to do that with rockets and for a barge landing, similarly they still have to flip the rocket around. If anything, less complex as land doesn't move as a barge can. Thus, I don't really see any extra complications, just extra fuel required. Certainly not so much more complicated they have to do it in different steps as evidenced by SpaceX first successful landing.

Some missions allow return to launch site because the payload weight is well below the maximum for the rocket so enough fuel can be loaded to return the first stage. However, other higher orbit missions need to get to higher speeds and it would take so much fuel to not only accelerate it but also slow it down and then send it back towards launch site you get to the point where you wouldn't be able to have any payload at all.

Barges are useful when your landing zone has not yet completed an environmental impact assessment as was the case for the last SpaceX attempt from VAFB. I would guess you can't manage on just one landing zone say 300 miles from launch site as different orbits will require rockets to go in different directions. One barge may well be cheaper than buying several of parcels of land and developing them as landing zones and this will give you more ability to move the landing site to exactly where you want it.

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Merc14

>"Once they have perfected the landing then they will attempt the complicated return procedure."

Except the first successful SpaceX landing was back near the launch site on solid ground so they did attempt the 'complicated' return procedure before they perfected the landing.

Why complicated return procedure? Guidance is complicated sure but they have to be able to do that with rockets and for a barge landing, similarly they still have to flip the rocket around. If anything, less complex as land doesn't move as a barge can. Thus, I don't really see any extra complications, just extra fuel required. Certainly not so much more complicated they have to do it in different steps as evidenced by SpaceX first successful landing.

Some missions allow return to launch site because the payload weight is well below the maximum for the rocket so enough fuel can be loaded to return the first stage. However, other higher orbit missions need to get to higher speeds and it would take so much fuel to not only accelerate it but also slow it down and then send it back towards launch site you get to the point where you wouldn't be able to have any payload at all.

Barges are useful when your landing zone has not yet completed an environmental impact assessment as was the case for the last SpaceX attempt from VAFB. I would guess you can't manage on just one landing zone say 300 miles from launch site as different orbits will require rockets to go in different directions. One barge may well be cheaper than buying several of parcels of land and developing them as landing zones and this will give you more ability to move the landing site to exactly where you want it.

I believe the barges are mainly there to support bigger missions. Heavier payloads and/or higher orbits wouldn't leave enough fuel to get the first stage all the way back to the cape but a barge can be parked in a position directly below the payload release or second stage launch area so the first stage has a shorter more direct descent path.

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crandles57

>"position directly below the payload release"

Payload release is usually at something like 75km altitude and travelling at 6000km/h at something like T+2min 25 sec. From there its momentum takes it up to somewhere near 100km and they do the boostback burn somewhere near the top of the path when travelling near horizontal. This starts at around T+3min 50 sec. To maximise payload, you want to use minimum fuel here so slow it down a little but still leave some speed in this direction that can be adequately slowed down by air resistance over rest of journey. The ideal location for barge is clearly a lot further from the launch site than directly beneath the payload release. The barge was 200 miles from the launch site for the Jason 3 launch. I would think directly below payload release would be less than a quarter of the ideal distance for the barge.

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Merc14

>"position directly below the payload release"

Payload release is usually at something like 75km altitude and travelling at 6000km/h at something like T+2min 25 sec. From there its momentum takes it up to somewhere near 100km and they do the boostback burn somewhere near the top of the path when travelling near horizontal. This starts at around T+3min 50 sec. To maximise payload, you want to use minimum fuel here so slow it down a little but still leave some speed in this direction that can be adequately slowed down by air resistance over rest of journey. The ideal location for barge is clearly a lot further from the launch site than directly beneath the payload release. The barge was 200 miles from the launch site for the Jason 3 launch. I would think directly below payload release would be less than a quarter of the ideal distance for the barge.

My mistake, I should've said positioned for the shortest descent possible which will vary depending on mission parameters.

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Waspie_Dwarf

Blue Origin launches same New Shepard spacecraft for third time

Blue Origin launched its reusable New Shepard suborbital spacecraft on its third test flight Saturday, successfully boosting an unpiloted capsule out of the discernible atmosphere for a few minutes of weightlessness before a parachute descent to the company’s West Texas launch site.

The New Shepard booster, meanwhile, plunged back to Earth tail first, re-igniting its hydrogen-fueled BE-3 engine at an altitude of just 3,635 feet. The engine quickly throttled up, four landing legs deployed and the rocket settled to a gentle touchdown, according to Amazon-founder Jeff Bezos, owner of Blue Origin.

arrow3.gifRead more...

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Merc14

I wonder if they plan on using this tech on the BE-4 engined vehicles?

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Waspie_Dwarf

Flight Three: Pushing the Envelope

New Shepard flew again on April 2, 2016 reaching an apogee of 339,178 feet or 103 kilometers. It was the third flight with the same hardware. We pushed the envelope on this flight, restarting the engine for the propulsive landing only 3,600 feet above the ground, requiring the BE-3 engine to start fast and ramp to high thrust fast.

Credit: Blue Origin

Source: Blue Origin - YouTube Channel

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Waspie_Dwarf

Flight 3: GH2 Vent Cam

Video from our New Shepard flight on April 2, 2016 showing flight of the booster from just ahead of reentry through descent and landing. Video is from the GH2 vent camera located just below the booster’s ring fin.

Credit: Blue Origin

Source: Blue Origin - YouTube Channel

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Merc14

That was beautiful to watch.

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