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When will the X-33 come out?

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posted on Aug, 26 2004 @ 07:54 AM
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I can remember back in 1999 or 1998 out at one of the Palmdale plants... I had to go out and inspect some equipment the USAF had on loan to the X-33 project. I stood on the bulkhead of the thing.....AMAZING how big it was....one solid piece of titanium for the forward bulkhead...had to be over a foot thick!! Enormous, and it's like 1/3 the size that the venture star is going to be. The LOX tank will have only about 16" clearance from the outer skin which has to have some outrageous heat shielding for re-entry......but when is it due to be on the launch pad?????




posted on Aug, 26 2004 @ 08:21 AM
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It was cancelled. THe fuel tank imploded durring testing, so the project kind of fell apart. The Crew Exploratory Vechicle is now the manned craft of the future.



posted on Aug, 26 2004 @ 08:23 AM
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The X-33 was scrapped a few years back because of problems with the composite fuel tanks. The Venture star will probably never be built, even though nanotech could possibly save the program. The future replacement for the shuttle is now indoubt, and is further reason why the private sector needs to become a player in these matters.



posted on Aug, 26 2004 @ 10:26 AM
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DC-X 1/3 Scale Demonstrator

In 1991 Scaled Composites was selected by McDonnell Douglas Aerospace for the SDIO Single Stage to Orbit demonstrator program. MDA proposed a lightweight 1/3 scale proof of concept (POC) demonstrator vehicle to validate the rocket powered vertical take off and landing concept.
Scaled was tasked with building the structural aeroshell and aerodynamic control surfaces. The DC-X aeroshell has a height of 62 feet and a maximum width of 15 feet at the base. Four large hydraulically-actuated flap sections are incorporated into the aeroshell for aerodynamic control during reentry and landing. A removable nose cone houses the emergency parachute recovery system. Also incorporated into the aeroshell was a "finger ring" used to restrain and stabilize the fuel tanks during temperature induced expansion and contraction cycles. The retractable landing gear are mounted to the aeroshell structure and all landing gear loads are reacted through the aeroshell. This structural philosophy would benefit the overall vehicle both in weight and complexity. Scaled employed low cost tooling methods for fabrication of the DC-X structure. A 1/4 fuselage section male plug was fabricated from the loft lines supplied by MDA. A single female tool was fabricated from the male plug, and the four graphite/epoxy sandwich panel sections were fabricated in the female tool. The sections were installed in an assembly fixture and bonded together using in-place graphite/epoxy laminates. The landing gear receptacles, flap mechanisms and servos were then added. The materials and structural design of the sandwich panel proved to be capable of maintaining structural integrity under the extreme conditions of the operating environment.
In order to deliver the aeroshell structure in a timely fashion, Scaled did not delay the aeroshell fabrication schedule while waiting for the resolution of sub-systems integration issues. Scaled sent a structures team to MDA's facility to support the final installation of the subsystems, which were often performed as minor repairs to the aeroshell structure. This was made possible because the vehicle was not an autoclaved or high-temperature-cured structure; the low-temperature curing and simple manufacturing process allowed this prototype flexibility. Despite all the post fabrication modifications, Scaled was able to build the complete aeroshell structure for 300 lb (10%) less than the weight goal. This weight reduction was instrumental in helping the DC-X vehicle stay within its weight budget.
Scaled was responsible for the emergency parachute recovery system. Scaled selected a parachute vendor and worked closely with that vendor to insure a timely and cost effective response to the program schedule. Scaled fabricated the necessary parachute test/qualification components and supervised all the qualification testing for the recovery system. Scaled's team was also dispatched to the White Sands launch facility to support additional modifications and repairs to the aeroshell structure during the test program.




this one i like but was only a prototype...:S



posted on Aug, 26 2004 @ 03:06 PM
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What does the DC-X have to do with his question?

Also I think the whole tank didn't hold up during testing is a cover story. I think they made the X-33 and it worked better then they thought and built the Venture star, The Venture star went black and to help cover it up they said the fuel tank wouldn't work and cancelled the whole billion dollar program. Why else would they of cancelled the "Next Gen Shuttle", you can't possibly buy their reason.

X-33 Engine



posted on Aug, 26 2004 @ 11:47 PM
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I stood on the thing during assembly and was told the tanks had passed testing. Hmmmmm.....more intrigue. I know there was concern because the LOX tank was to be in the forward section and there would be about a 16" gap between the outer skin and the tank. Tank temp could only reach 300F. Skin temps would be in the 1400F range??? Memory fade- something like that. Anyway, if it ever took off....we would know about it. The takeoff by-product is a rain cloud.....it would be massive and seen for hundreds of miles. Maybe possible to do a night takeoff...........it did have a portable launch pad. I personally liked the hyper-x (X-43)....now that was a cool airframe!!!!!!!!!!!!



posted on Aug, 27 2004 @ 11:55 AM
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I Agree, can't wait to see if it reaches mach 10 this fall. But I think its sad that they cancelled the add-on program, the X-43C, which would of been bigger and possibly become a AF Bomber.



posted on Sep, 12 2004 @ 10:53 AM
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If i remember correctly.....mermory fading......the x-43 was scrapped after it crashed during a drop test. I also recall that the engine for the X-43 was tested and I think it passed. Will research this.....have some info on this topic. The engine (X-43) was mounted between the rear vertical stabilizers on an SR-71. When the SR-71 got to altitude, they fired the engine to see what would "happen" I believe the engine was a scale down version though. The engine was tested, but I can't recall the details. As for the X-43.......hyper-X...I think it went black......but then again it was a NASA project.......who knows...

[edit on 12-9-2004 by age_ranger]



posted on Sep, 12 2004 @ 08:41 PM
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Ok, found my info on the X-33........Testing on the linear aerospike engines was done in Mississippi and scheduled for late 2000. 14 single engine test firings were completed earlier that year in 2000. The high speed heat tests for the thermal shield were completed by february 1999. I can remember the assembly of the airframe and actually standing next to the bulkhead in late 1999 i think......somewhere around that time frame... The tanks were not yet installed into it. But drop testing of the mock up had been completed by the time I had left in Dec. 2000. I have'nt heard of anything else since I left......I know the airborne laser program was starting up full swing....



posted on Sep, 12 2004 @ 09:31 PM
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I got some questions for age_ranger.
,
First off all, In 2001 the X-43 was launched by a Nasa B-52, they used a pegesus rocket to get it going to mach 5'ish, but the rocket stabalizer failed and so they had to blow it up. But they have since lauched one in 2004 and it worked bringing the craft up to mach 7 for 11 seconds of flight. They built 3. The last one will be launched this fall, it should hit mach 10. They cancelled the X-43B and its add-on the X-43C.

That was one of Nasa's stupidiss mistakes, But Nasa isn't very short sighted, some missions take over a decade of planing then years more to reach there destination and years more off its mission. So thats why I think they cancelled from pressure from our government and the Air Force.

On another note, When your talking about the SR-71, I think your refering to the D-21 drone, as far as I know the SR-71 had no connections with the X-43. Do you have any info on this?

As for the AirBorne Laser program, that thing is beginning to worry me, it keeps falling farther and farther behind schedule. I'm hoping it also doesn't go black.

[edit on 12-9-2004 by Murcielago]



posted on Sep, 13 2004 @ 12:09 PM
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I had'nt heard of the the further testing on the X-43, only that they had crashed a mock up and had engine problems...I left Edwards in Dec of 2000. No, not the SR-71 drone....NASA actually mounted an engine between the vertical stabs on an SR-71 and tested it.....i'll try to find info on it....looked through the papers I had and can't find the articles. NASA had 2 SR-71's out at Edwards which they flew. Edwards had 2 (From Beale AFB) but they were de-commisioned. My son actually got to sit in the pilots seat before they ran a full double afterburner run ... Talk about awesome!!!!.... then they shut them down for storage. Not cost effective recon i guess...and with Global Hawk hitting over 140,000 ft........who needs 'em now?


E_T

posted on Sep, 13 2004 @ 03:23 PM
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Originally posted by Murcielago
That was one of Nasa's stupidiss mistakes, But Nasa isn't very short sighted, some missions take over a decade of planing then years more to reach there destination and years more off its mission. So thats why I think they cancelled from pressure from our government and the Air Force.
Might be easier for them if politicians wouldn't have control of things that should belong to scientists.



Originally posted by age_ranger
I had'nt heard of the the further testing on the X-43, only that they had crashed a mock up and had engine problems...I left Edwards in Dec of 2000. No, not the SR-71 drone....NASA actually mounted an engine between the vertical stabs on an SR-71 and tested it.....i'll try to find info on it....looked through the papers I had and can't find the articles.

Here, it's called Linear Aerospike SR-71 Experiment.
www.dfrc.nasa.gov...
www.dfrc.nasa.gov...
www.dfrc.nasa.gov...


Not cost effective recon i guess...and with Global Hawk hitting over 140,000 ft........who needs 'em now?

Speed, speed and speed. It's only recon asset which can get fast to target and at specified time, whatever it is. (remember that time when satellites gets above specific area depends on their orbits)



posted on Sep, 13 2004 @ 03:51 PM
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Ummmmm......Ace Ranger, I think you might of meant to say the X-34 not the X-43. I read those things ET posted and its only refers the engine to the X-33 and X-34, I didn't see anything where it talked about the X-43.

Also, 140,000 ft. - huh - Are you refering to the UAV Global Hawk, it cant go no where near that high. Or maybe you accidentaly hit a "1" first?



posted on Sep, 13 2004 @ 08:34 PM
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Easy to get some of the X planes mixed up......so many of them going on. I will have to find a reference for the Global Hawk ceiling. I could swear that I remember 140k+. Of course without compromising any of my non-disclosure statements....i'll have to get back to you on this........may take some time though.


E_T

posted on Sep, 14 2004 @ 04:54 AM
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Originally posted by age_ranger
I will have to find a reference for the Global Hawk ceiling.
Here:

The Global Hawk UAV is optimized for high altitude, long range and endurance; it is to be capable of providing 28 hours of endurance while carrying 3,000 pounds of payload and operating at 65,000 feet mean sea level.

www.globalsecurity.org...

www.is.northropgrumman.com...
www.airforce-technology.com...

[edit on 14-9-2004 by E_T]



posted on Sep, 14 2004 @ 06:38 PM
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That sounds more like it, But if I remember correctly, I believe its endurance is 36 hours.



posted on Sep, 16 2004 @ 04:23 AM
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Well look what I found! It seems that the X-33 might be able to fly anyways!

www.spacedaily.com...

According to the link, it seems that Northrop Grumman have built and tested a successful cryotank, capable of repeated use! To me it would be inexcusable not to use this on the X-33 project, considering all the effort that went into its research and design. Ofcourse, I am sure that Nasa will come up with a reason not to use it with the X-33, instead opting for a new project that will set our space program back another 10 years.


E_T

posted on Sep, 16 2004 @ 04:44 AM
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Originally posted by Sigma
To me it would be inexcusable not to use this on the X-33 project, considering all the effort that went into its research and design. Ofcourse, I am sure that Nasa will come up with a reason not to use it with the X-33, instead opting for a new project that will set our space program back another 10 years.
Well, without significant additional funding there isn't left anything for developing next generation space shuttle after Bush's space plan.



posted on Sep, 16 2004 @ 05:29 PM
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After doing some digging I guess it appears that NASA contracted Lockheed to do the design and fabrication of the X-33. Unfortunatly after some minor hiccups with the budget and the equipment, the project was supposibly "canned", my own personal belief is that it went black and has been in development ever since. Even if the project was dropped, it could easily be picked up again and developed into a workable design, ofcourse the issue of money always comes into question, and our country doesn't like spending money on space anymore.

Except ofcourse for the extraordinary individuals like Burt Rutan, who still have a pioneering spirit.


[edit on 16-9-2004 by Sigma]



posted on Sep, 17 2004 @ 12:11 AM
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Sigma
and our country doesn't like spending money on space anymore.


What? Currently theres 2 rovers on Mars and they each cost 400 million.

There a probe in Saturns orbit called Cassini and that cost 3 billion.

As for the future goes, there developing a nuclear powered craft that will orbit 3 of Jupiters moons and that will cost around 8-10 billion.

Not to mention dozens of other programs going on at nasa and others, there mission in one word is "Explore".

Nasa puts billions into space every year, So one thing you can't say about Nasa is "they dont spend money on space".




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