SpaceShipTwo

Point out news stories, on the net or in mainstream media, related to polywell fusion.

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paperburn1
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SpaceShipTwo

Postby paperburn1 » Mon Nov 03, 2014 12:00 pm

Hart told a news conference that investigators had determined the "feathering" system, which helps it descend into the atmosphere from space, should have been deployed when the vehicle was traveling about 1.4 times the speed of sound.

Instead, the feather began rotating when the rocket-powered vehicle was traveling at Mach 1, he said, using a technical term for the speed of sound at a given altitude.

Hart said the feathering system, which folds the vehicle in half to create more atmospheric drag, was unlocked early by the co-pilot, according to video from the spaceship’s cockpit. About two seconds later, the spaceplane’s tail section began to fold.

"I'm not stating that this is the cause of the mishap. We have months and months of investigation to determine what the cause was," Hart said.


NO EXPLOSION

SpaceShipTwo was released normally from its carrier aircraft, WhiteKnightTwo, at an altitude of about 45,000 feet. Shortly afterwards its hybrid rocket motor, which was flying for the first time with a new plastic propellant, ignited as planned, Hart said.

Investigators also recovered SpaceShipTwo’s propellant tanks and engine intact, indicating there was no explosion.
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

Maui
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby Maui » Mon Nov 03, 2014 6:39 pm

Certainly seems to point to about the least damaging cause imaginable to the program.

DeltaV
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby DeltaV » Tue Nov 04, 2014 5:25 pm

The idea that either pilot would intentionally unlock the feathering system prior to motor burnout and trajectory apogee seems bogus to me.

That would violate common sense about how the system is supposed to operate.

If the feathering system was accidentally unlocked during motor burn, that would make more sense.

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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby swamijake » Tue Nov 04, 2014 5:28 pm

I'd really like to know how the pilot survived.

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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby Maui » Tue Nov 04, 2014 5:58 pm


Betruger
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby Betruger » Tue Nov 04, 2014 6:11 pm


DeltaV
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby DeltaV » Tue Nov 04, 2014 6:52 pm


DeltaV
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby DeltaV » Tue Nov 04, 2014 6:54 pm


dkfenger
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby dkfenger » Tue Nov 04, 2014 11:14 pm

There's some really good discussion on the NASA Spaceflight Forum. The consensus there seems to be that the feather unlock is done during the burn so that you have the option to abort the burn if it won't unlock. Once the burn is done you're headed for space no matter what you do. If you find out at that point that you can't configure for reentry, it's too late.

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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby Maui » Tue Nov 04, 2014 11:33 pm

I guess they neglected to consider that you are just as F'd if it deploys during the burn as you are if it doesn't deploy after. At least you probably have a short bit of time to deal with the issue of it not opening vs the instant dis-assembly when it deploys too soon.

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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby paperburn1 » Tue Nov 04, 2014 11:43 pm

Remember the NTSB said it was just unlocked and the did not "hit the switch" to tilt the tail section.
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

paperburn1
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby paperburn1 » Tue Nov 04, 2014 11:49 pm

A point I'd like to make it and I don't think a lot of non-aviation types understand is that how violent control reversal or flutter can be. It's not unheard of for a pilot to break his neck or otherwise severely injure themselves. I personally walked away with a nasty knot on my head after experiencing control reversal in the simulator. The simulator motions are limited in response to help protect the equipment when we are demonstrating this phenomenon.
http://www.scaled.com/projects/test_log ... aceshiptwo
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

Betruger
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby Betruger » Wed Nov 05, 2014 1:22 am


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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby GIThruster » Wed Nov 05, 2014 6:50 pm

"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

Maui
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Re: SpaceShipTwo

Postby Maui » Wed Nov 05, 2014 10:44 pm

Without actually watching that, I assume a lava video wasn't what you meant to paste?


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