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Space Travel Progress

Saturday 26th October 2013

Space Travel

The is another step forward for the Virgin Galactic start up. It has now completed several trips into space including a recent flawless return cycle. And the mechanism used to launch the space vehicle is to get the craft to a high altitude using conventional lift then use a much smaller rocket to do the rest.

Here is the video which shows a vehicle much smaller than a Space Shuttle.

The full news story is at  Virgin Galactic wants to do moon cruises.

Space X has demonstrated rocket launch and is the first private space company to successfully dock with the International Space Station. I covered this in Space Goes Private. 

NASA Space Launcher

NASA has demonstrated assisted Space Launch using a glider.

 The key to the assisted launch is that it remove the need to keep enough fuel on the spacecraft to get the fuel into space. Up to 80% of the fuel on the space shuttle is to get the space craft and fuel into space. If you aren’t having to lift the fuel then you need a much smaller rocket.

And the use of aeronautical lift saves fuel for both the lift vehicle and the rocket. In the  case of NASA’s glider assisted lift, there is no fuel at all on the lift vehicle.

 The full IEEE article on NASA supported air and space technology programs is at Meet NASA’s Futuristic Drone Research Program.

Space Elevator

The ultimate lift vehicle is the Space Elevator.

It may be a while before we get to the Space Elevator but the gliders and use of aeronautical lift make a lot of sense as an next best step in getting into space.

Successful Endeavours specialise in Electronics Design and Embedded Software Development. Ray Keefe has developed market leading electronics products in Australia for nearly 30 years. This post is Copyright © 2013 Successful Endeavours Pty Ltd.

One thought on “Space Travel Progress

  1. I’ve been following the Virgin Galactic start-up for sometime now, although not from and engineering perspective as my background would suggest.

    Richard Branson is a role model of mine and I admire the way he sets a goal and slowly but surely achieves it. He has over 400 start-ups to his name and most of them are very successful in their own right.

    When Richard first announced the Virgin Galactic brand there where many people, including myself that said “Paid flights into space – never in my lifetime” however with every success of the Virgin team, we draw one step closer to that being a reality.

    Just my 20c worth!

    Simon Maselli – Metamorph
    http://www.metabiz.com.au | 1300 916 082
    Finding Additional Capacity in Existing Resources

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