8 thoughts on “Starship”

    1. A legal immigrant, not a refugee. There’s a difference and you:
      don’t… want… to live… like a refugee.

  1. One successful test flight does not a program make. They need to expand the envelop with progressively more challenging flights. They need to prove that the successful landing wasn’t a fluke (and preferably without fire shooting out after the landing). They need to test the monster first stage, and then the full stack. Due to reusability, this rocket program is unlike any other in history. As long as the flights are successful, they don’t have to build a new rocket each time which saves both time and money. This stuff is amazing.

    1. How many can they store on site? Perhaps they can increase testing tempo. But if one is going to be retired anyway, good reason to test to failure.

  2. Thermal protection system hasn’t had a lot of testing either, other than we’ve seen it not come off descending from 10km. Perhaps its first real test will be a reentry from orbit. I assume orbital re-entries will attempt to land at Boca Chica? I haven’t seen or heard of much activity with that sea platform Elon purchased awhile back. Maybe I’m not well informed on that one? But an orbital attempt using SN20 may come as early as late summer this year.

    Not to be too smug in our assessments of shortcomings. According to Elon there were MANY MANY novel things tested in the new SN15 and I believe him. It was great to see it light 3 and land on 2 Raptors. Very smooth. Very impressive. Seems to be an issue with methane escaping post landing. Methane is a bit of an escape artist, otherwise natural gas wouldn’t require a rather non-flowery odoriferant.

    1. Personally I’d love to see flare off of the methane from two or three ports off Starship post landing. Was a big big fan of those Atlas verniers as a kid. Coolest part of the early Atlas. Wouldn’t that look just incredibly cool as a controlled vent from Starship? Especially on night landings! But I know, I know, wasteful. Recapture would be best. But hey maybe as in interim step?

      1. So far as I can tell from various diagrams, there’s no way to keep from venting any methane that’s past the primary fuel valve, just downstream of the methane pump. From there the high pressure fuel is circulated all around the bell and combustion chamber, returns to go through the pre-burner and turbine, then heads over to the injector head. There is a small fuel-tank pressurization line tapping off from the pipe that heads to the injectors, but no cut-off line to return all the extremely compressed methane to the tank. It has to go vent through the combustion chamber.

        If they had a three-way control valve where the methane feeds into the injector head, the could return it to the main tank, and also circulate methane through the engine for pre-chill without venting it anywhere. If I knew the sizes of all the components, I could calculate the mass of methane involved, but alas, that information isn’t readily available.

        The oxygen side, in contrast, is extremely short. The output of the LOX pump runs straight through the turbines and into the injectors.

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