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SpaceDev to Construct NASA's HL-20 Shuttle!

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posted on Nov, 23 2005 @ 09:16 AM
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Instead of deriving a spacecraft from NASA’s X-34 space plane concept, the firm has opted for a blunt-nosed lifting body approach to cut down on reentry heating stresses, SpaceDev chief Jim Benson said in a telephone interview. The plans stem from work SpaceDev performed with NASA’s Ames Research Center to study the use of hybrid rocket propulsion for spaceflight testbeds.

“Because of the X-34’s pointed nature and sharp edges, the high temperatures would meet the limits of our vehicle right at the ragged edge,” Benson said, adding that the new Dream Chaser design more closely resembles the Horizontal Landing-20 (HL-20) model studied by NASA’s Langley Research Center. “The HL-20 was a great little vehicle and it’s already designed.”

Small enough to fit inside the payload bay of a NASA shuttle with folded wings, the HL-20 Personnel Launch System was slated to carry 10 astronauts (two pilots and eight passengers) or small payloads into orbit, though funding for the program dried up in 1990.


SpaceDev was the company, which made spaceshipone’s hybrid engines, and it is expected that their craft will launch atop a stack of these engines. Even though this craft is a shuttle and closely resembles NASA's shuttle there will be no issue with foam or ice falling and damaging the shuttle. They will not be using explosive cryogenic liquids so this is another benefit.
Here's the comparison between SpaceDev's proposed craft and NASA's current space shuttle.



Within 2 years SpaceDev could have this craft up and running, which could reach sub orbital altitudes, and with additional funding of around 100million they could have a craft capable of reaching orbit. This orbital version would have a 1tonn cargo capacity and limited passenger space, which would give them the opportunity to service the ISS as well as performing their own experiments.
If SpaceDev can achieve their new concept for their Dreamchaser project it would be awesome. This would also take a lot of the ISS burden upon NASA away. I really hope SpaceDev can get the necessary funding for this. The fact that they are using NASA's old blueprints will attract investors as this design has had a lot of time money and effort poured into it, even though it never came into fruition.

Link:www.space.com...




posted on Nov, 23 2005 @ 09:24 AM
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Excellent post m8,nice to see that the private sector is now seeing the potential in opening up space.Hopefully we will soon see this happening more and more in the future...maybe the PanAm spacecraft seen in 2001 A Space Odyssey might not be a pipe dream after all.Well in terms of spaceflight not airline obviously..


[edit on 23-11-2005 by bmdefiant]



posted on Nov, 23 2005 @ 03:02 PM
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So much for payload capacity. Why not revert back to Gemini and Apollo style modules with something like that or plan on making the CEV?



posted on Nov, 23 2005 @ 08:09 PM
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wow...seems there a pretty bussy company lately...coming out with the 10 billion to the moon plan, buying a Falcon 1 rocket, and now this.


Wonder how much of it is going to be reusable.?

looks pretty cool, Although I wonder why their first stage is going to be done by a rocket...you think it would be cheaper to use a specificaly build jet aircraft, a big one with like 6 engines, that way all you would have to do is top off its tanks to launch again.

Its interesting that they decided not to go with the X-34...and now are going for the more smoothly done X-38, which "once apon a time" Nasa was calling it the CRV (Crew Return Vehicle), and planned for it to be able to delivery new crews to the ISS, as well as have one stay there indeffiniatly...just in case they needed to evacute for some reason.

They need 20 million to build the Sub-orbital version...HEY PAUL ALLEN!, CARE TO FUND ANOTHER ONE? (I wish)


I hope they get their funding. Theres getting to be some pretty tuff competition in the sub-orbital business.





posted on Nov, 23 2005 @ 08:23 PM
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Originally posted by Frosty
So much for payload capacity. Why not revert back to Gemini and Apollo style modules with something like that or plan on making the CEV?


I believe this is meant primarily for Humans to use. Payload cap is secondary for this project, Safety and Efficiency is the primary goal here.




They need 20 million to build the Sub-orbital version...HEY PAUL ALLEN!, CARE TO FUND ANOTHER ONE? (I wish)


Hey it could happen. Consolidation has to happen sooner or later and SpaceDev would compliment Rutans company.

[edit on 23-11-2005 by sardion2000]

[edit on 23-11-2005 by sardion2000]



posted on Nov, 24 2005 @ 06:06 AM
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I thought the sub orbital version needed a 10million dollar investment? And the orbital needed 100million.
I totally agree with sardion2000 on response to Frostys quote, the craft was not designed to haul payloads into orbit, it was meant for space tourism and possibly to help ferry the ISS astronauts and some small supplies to and from the ISS.



posted on Nov, 24 2005 @ 06:17 AM
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I was thinking about this concept too, and how it was odd that you saw something like this on the Airplane 2 movie... Mind wanders a lot...


I'm sure that once they put a habitat on the moon that people would be able to buy a ticket and go there for a couple weeks or so play tourist, the company providing the transportation could set up highway bulletin boards for advertising as they cruise to the moon... Now that would be something there... I wonder how much Coca Cola and Pepsi would pay to have their ads up that way...

I wasn't meaning this post to be something off topic, just thinking ahead with the space tourism and ways they could get funding for it.



posted on Nov, 24 2005 @ 11:58 AM
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wow...that would suck...for the 3 day trip to the moon you look out expecting to see pitch black with stars in it. But instead you cant see the stars because the space billboards are to bright.


luckily space billboards will never happen, since it would cost a but load of money, since the billboard would have to have maneuvering rockets on board...but theres no point into getting into the detail on something that wont ever happen.....thankfully.



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