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The mother ship rolls out!!

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posted on May, 31 2017 @ 08:13 PM
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a reply to: blackbird9393

What happens if they put a different pilot in each cockpit, then they don't agree about what to do in a bad situation?

Has anyone done a meme yet, with about 10 of them side-by-side?




posted on May, 31 2017 @ 08:26 PM
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a reply to: Nothin

Only the right side has flight controls. The left side has the computer and payload control systems.



posted on May, 31 2017 @ 08:28 PM
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With the center wing free to twist, they had better be able to match pitch of the fuselages.



posted on May, 31 2017 @ 08:32 PM
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a reply to: pteridine

They'll be linked through the flight controls I would imagine.



posted on May, 31 2017 @ 08:44 PM
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The carrier aircraft is an impressive feat of engineering, but I really don't know how they're going to keep launch costs competitive. Stratolaunch originally (circa 2011) was supposed to be using an air-launched version of the SpaceX Falcon 9, then changed to an upgraded Pegasus rocket from Orbital ATK (which they were calling Pegasus II) circa 2013. Now that too has been shelved, and the first launches are slated to use Orbital's existing Pegasus rockets.

Pegasus had some teething problems early on but has racked up an impressive launch record, with no failures/partial failures since 1997. Still, it is an expensive rocket for its throw weight - just under 1,000 lbs to LEO, with the next upcoming launch (scheduled for June 15) running NASA $56.3 million. Considering that Pegasus generally launches from a re-purposed Lockheed L-1011, it is unlikely that using the custom-built one-off Stratolaunch vehicle will make them any cheaper.

For comparison, SpaceX advertises a base price for the Falcon 9 of $62 million to send 50,265 pounds of payload to LEO, and that is without factoring in discounts for re-use that can be expected in the upcoming years.

There are really only two unique capabilities that air-launch provides. One is the ability to avoid overcrowded spaceport facilities that may be tied up with launch campaigns for other vehicles. One look at the Pegasus launch history - if the June launches goes off as scheduled, a total of 44 launches since 1990, or less than 2 a year on average - it would appear that there is a limited market for this capability. Ditto the other unique capability of air-launch, the ability to fly to different locations and enable launches to different orbital inclinations using the same hardware. There is nothing to suggest a massive market for this kind of capability.

The aircraft itself is an amazing piece of engineering, and I hope I get to see it fly someday. I just don't see a business case for it.



posted on May, 31 2017 @ 09:25 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: pteridine

They'll be linked through the flight controls I would imagine.


The question would be how well the control can prevent torque stresses while dampening oscillations under the load of the cargo and cargo free. Transitions will be critical and I think the release of the rocket will be difficult to model if the engines start close to the mothership.



posted on May, 31 2017 @ 10:08 PM
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Problem with this design is shoot between the wings!

This plane is too big for its own good. Can you imagine it trying to crash land on a road or small runway?
Look how wide is it already? Almost wider than the runway.



posted on May, 31 2017 @ 10:15 PM
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originally posted by: pteridine

originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: pteridine

They'll be linked through the flight controls I would imagine.


The question would be how well the control can prevent torque stresses while dampening oscillations under the load of the cargo and cargo free. Transitions will be critical and I think the release of the rocket will be difficult to model if the engines start close to the mothership.


The carrier aircraft is being built by Scaled Composites, which has some experience using the same basic design (although obviously on a smaller scale) with their White Knight Two aircraft, which has been used to launch suborbital rockets (SpaceshipTwo). I would think their experience with the White Knight/SpaceShipOne system - which also air-launched a suborbital rocket but used a different carrier aircraft design - would be meaningful.

Scaled probably has the most experience of any private organization in the world with in-flight release and air-start of rockets.
edit on 31-5-2017 by PhloydPhan because: grammar



posted on May, 31 2017 @ 11:46 PM
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originally posted by: makemap
Problem with this design is shoot between the wings!

This plane is too big for its own good. Can you imagine it trying to crash land on a road or small runway?
Look how wide is it already? Almost wider than the runway.


You're joking right??? please



posted on Jun, 1 2017 @ 11:18 AM
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So the pictures don't do it justice. That thing is huge.



posted on Jun, 1 2017 @ 03:27 PM
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a reply to: pteridine

First thought I had. The torsional rigidity of that center section must really be one helluva piece of engineering design. OTOH, it is Burt Rutan, so ....



posted on Jun, 1 2017 @ 04:07 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Did you get to see it zaph?



posted on Jun, 1 2017 @ 04:30 PM
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a reply to: blackbird9393

Oh yeah. And we're going back by tomorrow so I should be able to get more pictures. Right now I have some good ones on my camera, but I can't upload them until I can get a net connection. The only one I can upload is the obligatory lousy cell phone photo.

It's a freaking monster.



posted on Jun, 1 2017 @ 05:00 PM
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originally posted by: makemap
Problem with this design is shoot between the wings!

This plane is too big for its own good. Can you imagine it trying to crash land on a road or small runway?
Look how wide is it already? Almost wider than the runway.


If you land it, you haven't crashed. "Forced landing" is a more accurate term. I have had to make 4 forced landings (2 engine failures, 1 runaway engine, and 1 bad oil leak) but none were crashes. And a lot of aircraft are wider than the runway. We use a 747 SP to haul racehorses out of Lexington, KY and we have to pay a special fee to takeoff there because every time we rotate to takeoff, the outboard engines exaust blowfurrows through the grass alongside the runway blowing runway lights into the sky. The fee is for replacing wiring and lights and resodding the trench. The long runway at KLEX is 150 feet wide. The 747SP wingspan is 45 feet wider.



posted on Jun, 2 2017 @ 06:37 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Damn, can't wait to see lol



posted on Jun, 2 2017 @ 07:58 AM
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Stratolaunch, huh?

Looks like that strato launcher Burt Rutan invented has come to fruition. They'll keep it on standby to evacuate the elite to the ISS just before the comet strike they know is coming.



posted on Jun, 2 2017 @ 08:01 AM
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originally posted by: Pandaram
Look silly. Cant they just fill the middle bit?

That would defeat the purpose, as a rocket plane would be mounted there, and when the combined aircraft make it to a very high altitude the rocket plane will dislodge from the larger craft and propel itself into low earth orbit.
edit on 6 2 2017 by Sabz228 because: Spelling



posted on Jun, 2 2017 @ 08:03 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Would love to see a gallery once you get them uploaded.



posted on Jun, 2 2017 @ 01:53 PM
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a reply to: intrptr

When are you expecting this Comet strike? Genuine question btw.



posted on Jun, 2 2017 @ 02:11 PM
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a reply to: blackbird9393

We're about to head back down and see if she's still out. Then after we do some things I'll be online and will upload them.




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