posted on Aug, 31 2015 @ 12:32 PM
a reply to: Zaphod58
I'm convinced that Scramjets are right up there with Tokamaks and laser fusion on the "never gonna happen in *my* lifetime" scale.
The only real advantage they offer over conventional rockets is the old "it doesn't look like an ICBM on radar" one, and even that is pretty tenuous
most of the time. Turbo-ramjets and conventional ramjets are more than capable of hitting mach 4 or even 5, and rockets make too much sense, are way
too proven, and honestly have no equal for any speed above mach 6.
My feeling is that the old HOTOL-derived idea of pre-cooling air and feeding it into a turbopump, while more complex at face value, will end up being
to the scramjet what the CANDU was to the PWR/BWR (at least for power generation). A "more expensive and complex" design from the Commonwealth that
solved many of the major problems of it's simpler, sexier american cousin, and has the potential to become a far superior product, but will probably
just wither on the vine because of the whole "not developed here" bit.