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Old 24th May 2018, 06:17 AM   #41
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An Australian state needed a quick fix for a power supply problem. Tesla provided the world's biggest battery in an extremely short time. The battery is working out to be better than expected.
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Old 24th May 2018, 06:40 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by Octavo View Post
... snipped for relevance ...

Why? Does Dragon have trained pilots? No? FAA certifies that to fly. Will have Dragon 2 have pilots? Not on cargo flights and the "Pilot" on a crew flight doesn't actually pilot anything.

What exactly is a pilot going to do on a BFS anyway? I wouldn't trust a human to have the reactions necessary to time a suicide burn perfectly and then hit a tiny target in the ocean.

Crew to calm passengers and demo safety features, yes, definitely. But, no pilots. There's no point. If you have a bad day in a BFS, survival chances approach zero since there's no escape system. Hence the focus on reliability.
You may not be aware of this fact, but in order to for any aircraft to be used for commercial use, then that aircraft must be certified by the FAA as such. And getting that certification for an entirely new aircraft design (such as your Dragon) is very tough indeed.

Historically, the FAA has always required two pilots when the aircraft has a gross weight of 12,500 pounds, or more.

Now then, most modern aircraft can be readily flown by one pilot, however the FAA still requires two pilots.

And I have no idea of how these pilots would work into the system for this rocket, but I expect that the FAA would still require them all the same.

Furthermore, it is quite unlikely that any insurance company will write a policy for an aircraft that is being used for commercial purposes when that aircraft has not been certified by the FAA as an aircraft which can be used for commercial purposes. And if the aircraft cannot be properly insured, then it is very unlikely that it will be used for commercial purposes since the company flying the aircraft will be entirely responsible for any law suits that may result from the operation of said aircraft.
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Old 24th May 2018, 07:14 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
I'd say he is more like Eddison than PT Barnum in that he directs researchers and engineers and so on, some of his ideas are pie-in-the-sky etc. but some have already paid off.
This. Edison was also an a-hole who was much better at selling himself while taking credit for other peoples ideas than coming up with his own, but he did get those inventions out there for use and catapulted the world into a whole new age.
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Old 24th May 2018, 07:38 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by Crossbow View Post

Historically, the FAA has always required two pilots when the aircraft has a gross weight of 12,500 pounds, or more.

Now then, most modern aircraft can be readily flown by one pilot, however the FAA still requires two pilots.
Several groups (notably the NASA/Uber collaboration) are currently working on pilotless passenger aircraft projects. Most are small duct-fan or tilt rotor projects of the "flying car" type. If approved, they will provide the precedent for pilotless passenger aircraft, Elon Musk will then only have to get that rule applied to his vehicle.
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Old 24th May 2018, 07:47 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by Pope130 View Post
Several groups (notably the NASA/Uber collaboration) are currently working on pilotless passenger aircraft projects. Most are small duct-fan or tilt rotor projects of the "flying car" type. If approved, they will provide the precedent for pilotless passenger aircraft, Elon Musk will then only have to get that rule applied to his vehicle.
Indeed so!

I have heard about the same sort of thing as well, but considering that there is still a good bit of work to do with these issues it will take at least a few more years before such things are in use.
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Last edited by Crossbow; 24th May 2018 at 08:47 AM. Reason: Typo correction
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Old 24th May 2018, 07:50 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
The best comparison between Musk and Barnum is that both are very successful businessmen.
Their "success" is at peddling hype...
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Old 24th May 2018, 07:54 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
Lets have a look at some of those "impossible" ideas

- Landing first stage rocket boosters back on land or at sea for re-use
First looked at long before Musk and abandoned as not economically viable.

Quote:
- Solar panels that look just like ordinary roofing tiles
Their appearance does not affect their function.

Quote:
- Reducing the cost of putting satellites into orbit by over 50%
Plenty of other rocket programs out there.

Quote:
- Electric cars with the performance specifications of a supercar (the Tesla Model S P100D has a 532 HP motor, does 0-100kph (60mph) in 2.8 seconds, has a top speed of 250 kph (155 mph) and a single charge range of 540km (337 mi).
Tesla is a money pit. STILL not making a profit and you can't get a drive-away car from them. You have to sign up and wait and wait.
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Old 24th May 2018, 08:05 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Octavo View Post
Methane and Oxygen are non-renewable resources only in the most technical of senses. Production of Methane and Oxygen can be carbon negative if you're using CO2 from the atmosphere and doing all the chemistry off solar. That's actually the plan eventually, so... No, it will MASSIVELY reduce carbon emissions. Try running your 787 on Methane. Just no.
Steady on

There are plenty of proposals out there to power conventional aircraft with LNG, which is mainly methane.

And the commercial BFR flights will only 'massively reduce carbon emissions' if they replace a significant proportion of conventional flights. Is that going to happen? Will anyone care that their 60-minute conventional flight could be cut to a 5 minute BFR flight, as long as they wear a g-suit and take anti-nausea pills and leave the kids with friends?

But it will be interesting to see whether SpaceX generate their methane with solar power, as that's exactly what they're proposing to do on their Mars mission.
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Old 24th May 2018, 08:08 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Steady on

There are plenty of proposals out there to power conventional aircraft with LNG, which is mainly methane.

And the commercial BFR flights will only 'massively reduce carbon emissions' if they replace a significant proportion of conventional flights. Is that going to happen? Will anyone care that their 60-minute conventional flight could be cut to a 5 minute BFR flight, as long as they wear a g-suit and take anti-nausea pills and leave the kids with friends?

But it will be interesting to see whether SpaceX generate their methane with solar power, as that's exactly what they're proposing to do on their Mars mission.
I wonder what % of fuel is burned by very short, ie 60 minute airline flights, as compared to the long haul flights. Of course this thing won't be worth it for short flights. But turning a 10 hour flight into 30 minutes? Hell yeah. It could also greatly increase the amount of continental travel people do.
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Old 24th May 2018, 08:11 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by AnonyMoose View Post
PT Barnum was all about entertainment... nothing more, nothing less.
He did a lot of real-estate development as well, especially in Denver and some of the towns to the north. There's a "Barnum" neighborhood in Denver, and he bought a number of properties in Greeley was well.
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Old 24th May 2018, 08:14 AM   #51
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G-suits are not used for prone position passengers (Astronauts and Cosmonauts, for example). They are only needed where the acceleration force passes downward through the body, draining blood from the head, as in conventionally seated aircraft pilots while pulling positive gee maneuvers. The "speed genes" squeeze the legs and lower torso, forcing more blood into the upper body. Even for an upright position, G-suits would not be necessary for a healthy person at the anticipated three gee acceleration.
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Old 24th May 2018, 08:49 AM   #52
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Quote:
Air travel 'now' is profligately wasteful of resources.
A full Boeing Dreamliner ( and they are usually always full ) gets better fuel mileage per person than a Prius with 4 people aboard.
Would you like to inform me of a less wasteful method to get from Toronto to Cairns Australia?
These engines run perfectly happy on biofuels and carbon offsets are inexpensive to neutralize the carbon footprint. Long distance air travel is NOT and issue and soon enough short haul will be electric.

Tesla's release of its electric vehicle patents for open source use is very progressive.

The comparison to PT Barnum is ridiculous.
You might as well put Steve Jobs there too.... ...the fact that Jobs was a terrifically entertaining presenter and visionary takes nothing away from his contributions to civilization.

Part of funding a breakthrough company is getting investors hyped with the vision. Both Musk and Jobs are/were masters in that.
The short sellers will continue to crap on Tesla just as they STILL do with Apple.
WIll Wallstreet never learn...
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Old 24th May 2018, 09:46 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by Pope130 View Post
G-suits are not used for prone position passengers (Astronauts and Cosmonauts, for example). They are only needed where the acceleration force passes downward through the body, draining blood from the head, as in conventionally seated aircraft pilots while pulling positive gee maneuvers. The "speed genes" squeeze the legs and lower torso, forcing more blood into the upper body. Even for an upright position, G-suits would not be necessary for a healthy person at the anticipated three gee acceleration.
OK, cheers. I was just going by the wiki article on g-suits, plus other sources:

"Astronauts wear g-suits similar to aviators ..."
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Old 24th May 2018, 10:05 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by macdoc View Post
A full Boeing Dreamliner ( and they are usually always full ) gets better fuel mileage per person than a Prius with 4 people aboard.
You're welcome. (I was a contractor to Boeing on the Dreamliner, and that's the sort of thing we wanted to happen.)

Quote:
Part of funding a breakthrough company is getting investors hyped with the vision. Both Musk and Jobs are/were masters in that.
And the public too. This was where I stood several years ago in the launch market. I'd just seen a string of Falcon 1 failures and felt at the time that SpaceX was more hype than substance. But see, the existing launch industry didn't need hype. We knew who our customers were, and they knew who we were, and everyone knew what was expected from everyone else. And I mean the commercial launch market, not the government-funded specialty markets like ISS service and exploration or the defense markets. There was no need to go to social media or host events or engage in any way with the public. That industry largely just plugged along.

What Musk did is make space cool again for everyone. If he also stepped up and made cool rockets, the so much the better. But in transforming the industry to be a more public-facing one, he made it fun to compete again. At about the same time I was finishing up on the Dreamliner project I was starting work with Orbital Sciences on a redesign of their Antares rocket, and with ATK on what would turn out to be the Ares 1X. In a separate thread, if you want, we can talk about those in more depth. But point here is that now with Cygnus-Antares, people actually know that these flights are taking place and getting enthusiastic about them and talking about a competition and rivalry between the major players in the launch business. This conversation wasn't happening ten years ago. It's happening now, only because Elon Musk decided it was going to happen.

Yes, that would tend to make him a showman and a technology evangelist rather than a more traditional entrepreneur. But I'm one of the who initially thought he was all talk and who has come to see his value in the various industries in which he competes. I'm hoping I'll eventually get to drive the Model 3 I've preordered, but I'm not willing to write him off as a Barnum just yet.
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Old 24th May 2018, 10:20 AM   #55
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
OK, cheers. I was just going by the wiki article on g-suits, plus other sources:

"Astronauts wear g-suits similar to aviators ..."
Sorry if I came across critically. It's always good to re-check what Wiki says.

I just noticed that my spell check changed "jeans" to "genes". I need to re-check these things myself.
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Old 24th May 2018, 11:30 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by Octavo View Post
Methane and Oxygen are non-renewable resources only in the most technical of senses. Production of Methane and Oxygen can be carbon negative if you're using CO2 from the atmosphere and doing all the chemistry off solar. That's actually the plan eventually, so... No, it will MASSIVELY reduce carbon emissions. Try running your 787 on Methane. Just no.

"Can be... if... eventually."

Let's say Musk, rather than just saying, "natural gas is still cheap, we'll use that instead" as every actual business man making every actual business decision in the real world has done so far, actually does invent and build a massive solar methane generating infrastructure. Then at some point a few years down the road, that system will have been in operation long enough and produced enough methane and recaptured enough carbon to offset the amount of non-renewable energy used in constructing it. (Unless he's been using it to fuel rockets instead... hmm.)

At that point, there's a source of a steady supply of a certain amount of carbon-neutral methane. Which could be used to provide the energy to build additional solar methane generating infrastructure. Or it could be used to generate electricity, replacing some of the many plants still using natural gas, oil, or coal. Or it could be used for a few rich people to jump around the globe in rockets. Hmm.

This makes me wonder. It's just possible that Musk is a humanitarian genius using space travel for the elite as bait to get government subsidies to support things that could actually be necessary and useful in the actual future, like solar methane generating infrastructure. If so, more (solar) power to him.
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Old 24th May 2018, 11:56 AM   #57
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Originally Posted by macdoc View Post
A full Boeing Dreamliner ( and they are usually always full ) gets better fuel mileage per person than a Prius with 4 people aboard.
Would you like to inform me of a less wasteful method to get from Toronto to Cairns Australia?

- Not going from Toronto to Cairns Australia.

- Trains and sailing ships.

I'm sure you'll be quick to point out the relative disadvantages of these alternatives, which are indeed enormous. But those are the options our descendants will be left with. The ability to pretend that how the fuel a specific vehicle uses is sourced is what matters, within a global economy still overwhelmingly run on non-renewable fossil fuels, is one of the reasons. For the foreseeable future, what matters is total energy usage and the economic capacity and political will to increase the renewable supply. All the rest is just shuffling the paths by which carbon moves from under the ground to into the atmosphere.

Air travel uses a lot of it, to relatively little overall benefit. The Musk passenger rocket would use far more.
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Old 24th May 2018, 01:07 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
I'm sure you'll be quick to point out the relative disadvantages of these alternatives, which are indeed enormous. But those are the options our descendants will be left with.
Do you have a timeline in mind for the decline of air travel? Also, on what basis do you make this prediction? Peak oil (gas/coal)? Or the decline of modern techological civilization due to climate change? Other factors? A combination of the above?

I think I understand the general concern, but I'm genuinely curious to understand specifically where you are coming from.

The environmentalist in me sees that there are valid concerns. The technological optimist in me thinks that those concerns will be overcome, and while new problems will arise, they will be dealt with in turn.

I might be wrong, though, so I would appreciate hearing your case for the specific decline you seem to be hinting at.
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Old 24th May 2018, 01:10 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
At that point, there's a source of a steady supply of a certain amount of carbon-neutral methane. Which could be used to provide the energy to build additional solar methane generating infrastructure. Or it could be used to generate electricity, replacing some of the many plants still using natural gas, oil, or coal. Or it could be used for a few rich people to jump around the globe in rockets. Hmm.
Yeah, pretty much this. Energy is fungible.

I suppose an argument could be made that developing these rockets could create a demand for methane that would lead to research and development of solar-produced methane which could lead to new technologies and eventually an economically competitive carbon neutral methane production, but I'm very skeptical that it would work out that way.
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Old 24th May 2018, 01:15 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Pope130 View Post
Sorry if I came across critically. It's always good to re-check what Wiki says.

I just noticed that my spell check changed "jeans" to "genes". I need to re-check these things myself.

You didn't come across critically. I was admitting that my 'research' was probably pretty superficial. Man, this place is a minefield

However ... would it be fair to say that untrained, yet reasonably fit and young everyday folks, taking such a flight, might find several minutes of 3g acceleration/deceleration and several more minutes of weightlessness to be - at the very least - rather distressing? Quite likely vomit-inducing? Maybe "**** that. My brother tried it ... no way, Jose" ?

I've still to picture how passengers might board (this is pure detail, a fun concept to consider) to take up their recumbent position relative to the line of flight. Their attitude is pretty much the same as in a conventional aircraft, except their 'plane' is pointing upwards. octavo has suggested they might be loaded into pods/cassettes that are prepared outside the ship and then slotted in. Sounds tricky to me, not to mention expensive.

Let's not even get started on the nature of the BFR 'airports'. I can't picture a lot of taxiing round to the unloading areas, and then there's reloading on a fresh booster and pumping LOX ... Sorry, I got started Will they just be novelty BFR flights between a few chosen destinations? That could work, though it's hard to see why anyone would bother.

So, Musk eh? Has certainly done some great stuff, but often talks utter bollocks. For my money he doesn't get a free pass on the bollocks just because of the great stuff. Open mind ... brain ... fall out ... But this commercial BFR stuff is certainly not a commercial proposal, unless it's encouraging the fanboy fringe to buy Teslas.
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Old 24th May 2018, 01:41 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by ChristianProgressive View Post
First looked at long before Musk and abandoned as not economically viable.
And yet, look who has made them economically viable

Originally Posted by ChristianProgressive View Post
Their appearance does not affect their function.
No, it affects buy up.

There are many people who would not have ugly old solar panels on their house, but they would have these because they don't look like solar panels... that was the whole idea (I guess you were to busy being hypercritical to notice)

Originally Posted by ChristianProgressive View Post
Plenty of other rocket programs out there.
And NONE of them have brought the cost to orbit down the way SpaceX has.

Originally Posted by ChristianProgressive View Post
Tesla is a money pit. STILL not making a profit and you can't get a drive-away car from them. You have to sign up and wait and wait.
Those who lead the way always carry the brunt of R&D costs. Regardless, the performance specs of the Tesla Model S P100D are undeniable
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Old 24th May 2018, 02:14 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
You didn't come across critically. I was admitting that my 'research' was probably pretty superficial. Man, this place is a minefield

However ... would it be fair to say that untrained, yet reasonably fit and young everyday folks, taking such a flight, might find several minutes of 3g acceleration/deceleration and several more minutes of weightlessness to be - at the very least - rather distressing? Quite likely vomit-inducing? Maybe "**** that. My brother tried it ... no way, Jose" ?
Oh, I agree. I've experienced both 3g, and free-fall, for brief periods. Most people would not find it enjoyable. Yet there are people who jump out of airplanes recreationally, take parabolic flights in jets and indulge in other activities that most would find unpleasant. I suspect that finding passengers would not be difficult.

Perhaps a prerequisite centrifuge ride and some zero-g time will be required.

I think an indication of potential will be how well Virgin Galactic does in the tourist trade.

I'm inclined to give Musk the benefit of the doubt on this. He's brought considerably more innovations to market than I have.
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Old 24th May 2018, 03:55 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I think Musk's idea of rocket travel replacing air travel is a little ridiculous. It's solving a problem that doesn't exist (it takes too long to get from one point on the globe to another? Not really).

Sure, people would like to make travel around the world even faster than it already is. But I highly doubt they will be willing to pay the kinds of fares that would be necessary to make the improvement in travel time that we're talking about here.

It's an interesting idea in so much as if the market were there it could potentially put a lot of money into the rocket industry, leading to new advances and economy of scale. But I really don't think the market is there, not even if the BFR could be as safe and efficient as advertised, and while I expect that SpaceX can make some major gains and pull off something spectacular, I also expect that they will fall far short on the the level of safety that they are talking about for the BFR. That isn't to say that it can't be made much safer than current rockets, but as safe as air travel? I'm sorry but just the simple fact of how rockets work compared to how airplanes work makes me doubt that.
I suspect it's largely a way to support multiple globally-dispersed launch/landing sites (providing multiple launch windows per day for orbital refuelling launches) and to keep flight rates up (important for maintaining safety and low operating costs).

The safety issue really may not be what you're making it out to be. The engines go through more extreme treatment, but only operate for a short amount of time, and lack the huge compressor fans that seem to be such a bad failure point. SpaceX has gotten pretty good at building engines, and so far has done ~500 engine launch burns (omitting the subsequent first stage burns for recovery/landing maneuvers, and second stage relights) since the last and only Merlin failure (which did not cause the vehicle to be lost). On top of that, the BFS has a high level of redundancy, with now 3 engines for landing, and lacks problem elements like the helium system that doomed CRS-7. The duration of the aerodynamic portions of flight are short, limiting interference from weather (no iced-up pitot tubes), and the vast majority of aircraft incidents are pilot error, which wouldn't be an issue for BFR. (Someone on the ground could still pull an Ariane 5 flight VA241 and point the rocket in the wrong direction, but the high flight rate is part of preventing that kind of thing. And if they manage that, the BFS should at least be better at landing without a landing pad than airliners are at landing without runways.)

Parity with airlines is a long way off and I doubt it'll be achieved with BFR as the first suborbital rocket transport system to ever fly, but I wouldn't rule it out altogether.
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Old 24th May 2018, 05:53 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by ChristianProgressive View Post
Their "success" is at peddling hype...
SpaceX. You dismissed this before, but now it's obvious you never actually stopped to think about it.
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Old 24th May 2018, 07:52 PM   #65
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Likely a Tesla short seller ....who got burned.
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Old 24th May 2018, 10:00 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
And the commercial BFR flights will only 'massively reduce carbon emissions' if they replace a significant proportion of conventional flights. Is that going to happen? Will anyone care that their 60-minute conventional flight could be cut to a 5 minute BFR flight, as long as they wear a g-suit and take anti-nausea pills and leave the kids with friends?
A five minute suborbital surface to surface rocket flight? Are you kidding me? Where have you seen plans for that?

If we have the minimum of zero seconds coast phase that is going to be 2½ minutes from lift off to entry interface. You are going to hit around 20G on lift off, and then about the same during the 2½ minutes to touchdown. As Private Hudson said... "We're on an express elevator to hell, going down!"..

I think part of SpaceX's deal with passengers is that they will get them to their destination quickly... and alive.


Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
But it will be interesting to see whether SpaceX generate their methane with solar power, as that's exactly what they're proposing to do on their Mars mission.
I don't see why not, although it will need some advances in the efficiency of solar cells over the next few years.
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Old 24th May 2018, 11:25 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
A five minute suborbital surface to surface rocket flight? Are you kidding me? Where have you seen plans for that?
I haven't, and won't. I was responding ironically to octavo's point about huge savings in CO2 emissions, and referring to short-haul flights where the BFR is a non-starter. The proposals might just work as a rare and expensive novelty but, given the infrastructure they'll have to build and the regulations already mentioned, I'd doubt it.
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Old 25th May 2018, 12:29 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
I haven't, and won't. I was responding ironically to octavo's point about huge savings in CO2 emissions, and referring to short-haul flights where the BFR is a non-starter. The proposals might just work as a rare and expensive novelty but, given the infrastructure they'll have to build and the regulations already mentioned, I'd doubt it.
Look, I'm as fanboi about Musk as they come and I'm super skeptical we'll ever see P2P BFR, but Gwynne was absolutely adamant in that Ted talk. It will happen and within a decade. I'm not sure why she's so confidant, so I'm guessing they've done a lot of research into this and really believe they can do it.

Time will tell.
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Old 25th May 2018, 01:15 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by Octavo View Post
Look, I'm as fanboi about Musk as they come and I'm super skeptical we'll ever see P2P BFR, but Gwynne was absolutely adamant in that Ted talk. It will happen and within a decade. I'm not sure why she's so confidant, so I'm guessing they've done a lot of research into this and really believe they can do it.

Time will tell.
She's talking up the idea because she's president and COO of SpaceX?

Last year Musk claimed that a Tesla would soon (in late 2017) drive entirely hands-off from LA to NYC, plotting its own route according to local conditions. Was that claim plausible because they'd 'done a lot of research into it'? It didn't happen and it was never going to happen. Still hasn't.
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Old 25th May 2018, 02:31 AM   #70
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
She's talking up the idea because she's president and COO of SpaceX?

Last year Musk claimed that a Tesla would soon (in late 2017) drive entirely hands-off from LA to NYC, plotting its own route according to local conditions. Was that claim plausible because they'd 'done a lot of research into it'? It didn't happen and it was never going to happen. Still hasn't.
Fair point... But but but this is totally different because I really want it to happen, so there!!

You guys and your skepticism. Sheesh, anybody would swear this was an educational forum.
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Old 25th May 2018, 03:05 AM   #71
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Originally Posted by Octavo View Post
I'm guessing they've done a lot of research into this and really believe they can do it.

Time will tell.
I have no doubts it's do-able. At this stage it doesn't actually require doing anything that hasn't been done already, it just needs to be done bigger with people on and that's just a question of development hours.

I just can't see it being economically viable.
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Old 25th May 2018, 12:55 PM   #72
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An interesting report about production and sales of the Tesla Model 3 -

You could be forgiven for thinking that Tesla was already shipping $35,000 Model 3s, given it is still the quoted starting price for the vehicle and every news report comes attached with that “mass market” caveat. But it isn’t. The cheapest version that is shipping to owners is the long-range variant with a bigger battery that starts at $44,000.

In a tweet this week, Musk said that Tesla needed “three to six months after [producing] 5,000 vehicles per week to ship the $35,000 Tesla” to achieve target cost. Tesla only produced around 2,270 Model 3s per week in April. But the company is still targeting 5,000 vehicles a week in “about two months”, delaying the $35,000 version to at least October and probably into 2019.

Why? “Shipping the minimum cost Model 3 right away would cause Tesla to lose money and die,” said Musk.


Hmmm ...
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Old 25th May 2018, 01:09 PM   #73
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and?
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Old 25th May 2018, 01:47 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by macdoc View Post
and?
Tesla is touted as one of his great accomplishments. Yet it can't ship the basic model for fear of folding?
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Old 25th May 2018, 06:52 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Tesla is touted as one of his great accomplishments. Yet it can't ship the basic model for fear of folding?
Tesla is one of his great accomplishments. You can not possibly claim it's anything else. That doesn't mean its capabilities are limitless and it will never encounter obstacles or make mistakes. Their production troubles have put them in a position where they can't sell the low-end, low-profit margin vehicles at this time. That doesn't negate everything else they've done.
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Old 25th May 2018, 07:05 PM   #76
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Originally Posted by 3point14 View Post
I have no doubts it's do-able. At this stage it doesn't actually require doing anything that hasn't been done already, it just needs to be done bigger with people on and that's just a question of development hours.

I just can't see it being economically viable.
Again, it may not be economically viable in isolation, but it may reduce the cost of other things they see as necessary by enough to be worthwhile.

BFR is not great for direct flights to, for example, geostationary orbit. The upper stage burns most of its propellant getting to orbit, and is a lot of mass to haul out there and back. But refuel in LEO and you can go to the moon and Mars. One refueling flight should get them much more payload to GEO. But Earth rotates, and a given launch site starts moving out of the plane of a spacecraft's orbit immediately after launch. More launch sites means more windows for refueling launches, as well as distributing the logistics of LOX and LCH4 supply. And keeping that equipment busy doing high-speed freight and passenger service might not make a huge amount of money, but it could reduce the cost of having it around.
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Old 26th May 2018, 08:59 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Tesla is touted as one of his great accomplishments. Yet it can't ship the basic model for fear of folding?
Horrors! A businessman doesn't go out of his way to do something that could harm his business! Who ever heard of such a thing!
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Old 26th May 2018, 10:13 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Horrors! A businessman doesn't go out of his way to do something that could harm his business! Who ever heard of such a thing!
You've phrased that in such general terms that they're hard to disagree with.

But can you think of another example of a significant company that advertises a product but won't sell it, out of fear of financially wrecking the company?
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Old 26th May 2018, 11:00 AM   #79
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
You've phrased that in such general terms that they're hard to disagree with.

But can you think of another example of a significant company that advertises a product but won't sell it, out of fear of financially wrecking the company?
It's not even slightly unusual for things to be up for sale with a lead time before stock will become available, or put on hold as other products are prioritized. Many times, a product will be canceled outright due to supply issues or unprofitability. Tesla's not doing that, they're just putting off sales of the low end models.

They're beating their established competition in both manufacturing and sales by a substantial margin, even with their production problems. It takes quite a bit of creative reinterpretation of the facts to turn that into a failure.
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Old 26th May 2018, 12:12 PM   #80
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Quote:
But can you think of another example of a significant company that advertises a product but won't sell it, out of fear of financially wrecking the company?
It is not a matter of "won't sell it"......they have limited production facilities and are allocating those facilities to higher margin products so they can avoid diluting the company by raising more capital.
That's a management decision.

If you are Tesla 3 buyer and you see a basic with lead time of 1 year and a higher end product with a shorter delivery time .....it then becomes your decision.

Tesla has to compete against an overly ripe ICE industry whose infrastructure and production has been refined over a century....gov is doing its bit with subsidies ( consider the curve for solar panels which are now mature and getting cheaper.

He'll make decisions that keep his burn rate within reason as he ramps up.
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