Blue Origin Aerospace (updates)

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DocM    12,777

Blur Origin's RBS launcher, which is not the Next Generation Launch System being built with ULA, will also use the BE-4 methane first stage engine and their recently qualified BE-3 upper stage engine.

A suborbital vehicle, New Shepard, is also using the BE-3 engine and and is expected to start test flights later this year.

The SV crew vehicle is a biconic capsule originally a competitor in NASA's Commercial Crew competition.

http://www.floridatoday.com/story/tech/science/space/2015/04/09/blue-origin-eyes-cape-build-launch-rockets/25505063/

Blue Origin eyes Cape Canaveral to build, launch rockets

A billionaire-backed company that aspires to make human spaceflight more affordable would build rockets near Kennedy Space Center and launch them from Cape Canaveral if state officials can secure its commitment in the coming weeks.

Blue Origin, founded in 2000 by Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos, could choose from among several states as soon as next month. Brevard County is a contender to win a rocket manufacturing site and up to 300 jobs in preparation for orbital launches in the next five years.

"I have talked to Jeff Bezos, urging him to come to the Cape," U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson told FLORIDA TODAY, confirming Seattle-based Blue Origin is the company the state has been wooing under the code name of Project Panther.

Blue Origin's arrival would be a boost for the Space Coast's future in the commercial space sector, not long after SpaceX chose Texas as a commercial launch site.

It would also mark a successful conclusion to a deal forced to shift gears late when the company's preferred launch site near Volusia County ran into obstacles, threatening the state's bid.

The state's revised proposal would have Blue Origin set up a manufacturing site in Exploration Park, a planned research and industrial complex outside KSC's south gate, and launch from Launch Complex 36, a state-run pad on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

Blue Origin so far has confirmed only that Florida is one of the states it is considering for orbital launches. "We're hoping to make a decision about that soon," said company President Rob Meyerson.

The company plans to begin flight tests this year of a suborbital spacecraft designed to carry at least three people. It is also developing an engine to power a new rocket for United Launch Alliance, the U.S. government's primary launcher of high-value missions.

Fighting for Shiloh

Talks about the so-called Project Panther initially focused on the state's proposed Shiloh commercial launch complex, which straddles the Brevard-Volusia border on property NASA shares with the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. A rocket factory would have been located in nearby Oak Hill in southern Volusia County.

Blue Origin was one of the first commercial space companies to express interest in the Shiloh site after Space Florida in 2012 asked NASA for 200 acres of land there for one or two launch pads.

Like SpaceX, which plans to build a private launch complex in Texas, Blue Origin believes commercial launchers need facilities outside NASA or Air Force control to thrive, just as commercial aviation operates independently from military bases.

Blue Origin will fly its New Shepard suborbital capsule from its own private range in western Texas, a step toward development of an orbital rocket and spacecraft.

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Blue Origin SV crew vehicle

B9316889725Z.1_20150409065805_000_GHIAEV

New Shepard suborbital concept

prototype-new_shepard.jpg

Reusable Booster System concept

booster_system.jpg

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DocM    12,777

Blue Origin test this week

http://tfr.faa.gov/save_pages/detail_5_6644.html

Issue Date : April 13, 2015 at 1629 UTC

Location : FOR VAN HORN, New Mexico near SALT FLAT VORTAC (SFL)

Beginning Date and Time : April 14, 2015 at 1300 UTC

Ending Date and Time : April 14, 2015 at 1800 UTC

Reason for NOTAM : DUE TO ROCKET LAUNCH ACTIVITY WITHIN A 3 NM RADIUS THE SALT FLAT

Type : Space Operations

Airspace Definition:

Center: On the SALT FLAT VORTAC (SFL) 127 degree radial at 24 nautical miles. (Latitude: 31

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DocM    12,777

http://tfr.faa.gov/save_pages/detail_5_1252.html

Issue Date : April 22, 2015 at 1724 UTC

Location : VAN HORN, Texas near SALT FLAT VORTAC (SFL)

Beginning Date and Time : April 23, 2015 at 1400 UTC

Ending Date and Time : April 23, 2015 at 2359 UTC

Reason for NOTAM : DUE TO SPACE FLIGHT OPERATIONS WITHIN AN AREA DEFINED AS 17NM RADIUS OF 3127N10446W OR THE SALT FLAT

Type : Space Operations

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Beittil    369

Yeah well, unless some NSF fanatics are staking out nearby with zoom lens camera's I doubt were going to hear/see about it anytime soon, at least not from BO... 

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DocM    12,777

This is true. They're extremely secretive with few signs of changing. Even the L2 info is scarce.

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Beittil    369

I mean, how lame is it that even when an FAA official says they are going to be testing soon and on the FAA website you can dig this NOTAM info up... they still refuse to even confirm that they are going to do a test today :s

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DocM    12,777

Well, we do know that they plan on flying their suborbital New Shepard (see above) this year. It's to use the BE-3 LH2 engine which was recently qualified. The NS flew a few times in 2012-2013 with another engine, but had a failure at 14,000 ft after which they clammed up.

blue-origin-new-shepard.jpg#geekosystem

NewShepard_BlueOrigin02.jpg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NANePoo_p30

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Beittil    369

Wow... They actually shared a video :D

@blueorigin: We took to the skies in West Texas! Check out http://t.co/XNq9WB3aZ2 for details & video from New Shepard's 1st developmental test flight.

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Beittil    369

And wow! Not just a tiny hop either!!! A full launch, separation and landing of their capsule to, damn :D

 

 

 

I am also going to assume that the booster didn't come down quite so gently :p

Way to go BO!

 

Edit: Added video's

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DocM    12,777

The New Shepard suborbital systems booster is supposed to land and be reused.

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Beittil    369

Yes, it does. But the lack of video from the booster after CC sep (at least, after it fades from view because the camera is following the CC) could suggest it didn't go as planned and they forgo showing exploding hardware :p

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DocM    12,777

We'll find out soon enough.

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Beittil    369

Also, rough landing still at 7.31 m/s (24ft/s)... I wonder what they are going to do to soften that... Soyuz style retrofire or perhaps CST-100 style airbags!?!

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DocM    12,777

AIUI a Soyuz style braking burn.

Hearing they lost the booster, again. Their first one bit the dust in 2013.

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DocM    12,777

Also,

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XerXis    251

wow, I wouldn't want to be in that capsule when it touches down, that seemed very rough

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DocM    12,777

Bezos post. They lost the booster.

https://www.blueorigin.com/news/blog/first-developmental-test-flight-of-new-shepard

Soyuz landings have been known to rattle teeth, so yeah. IF New Shepard is doing a terminal braking burn the last 2-3 meters it'll be much like a Soyuz landing.

In contrast, SpaceX's Dragon V2 chutes & rockets landing mode (1 of 3) does the braking burn about 10 meters up and settles softly.

This conference video is a tad out of date, no Dragon V2, but correct. Landing starts at about 02:20.

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flyingskippy    126

You'd think they would do a engineering review of the hydraulic system after SpaceX CRS5 attempt. If you want to set the bar for safety in the aerospace/aviation industry, you have to study the failures and accidents of prior flights. Even if they are your competition.

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DocM    12,777

Looking at New Shepard, it almost looks like the spaceship in Flesh Gordon (1974) ;)

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DocM    12,777

Rumors about Blue's orbital booster from baldusi at NSF (but with a BE-4 thrust number correction and BE-3 info by me),

S1 engines: 6x BE-4 methane

S2 engine: BE-3 hydrogen

S1 thrust: 14.4 MN (3.3 mlbf)

S2 thrust: 490 KN (110,000 lbf}

GLOW: ~1,250 tonnes

LEO (disposable): ~25 tonnes

LEO (reusable): 12+ tonnes

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DocM    12,777

Check out New Shepard with the upper ring fins and bug legs deployed. Looks a bit like a bacteriophage virus.

rocket_legs_blue.jpg

T4+bacteriophage.jpg

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Unobscured Vision    2,154

Sometimes designs copied from nature work extremely well. Maybe they keyed in to something that showed good numbers in simulation. We'll have to wait and see how it works out. ;)

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Draggendrop    5,175

Here is a good quick article (with a few video's) that talk's about the "three"...

 

 

 

In the booming commercial space business, ventures founded by tech billionaires Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk and Paul Allen are reinventing the most expensive aspect - launching spacecraft into orbit.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-06-billionaires-aim-cheaper-spaceflight.html#jCp

http://phys.org/news/2015-06-billionaires-aim-cheaper-spaceflight.html

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DocM    12,777

Blue trying to get in some publicity ahead of the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing later this week

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Click here to view the Tweet

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