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LINUX-L  2007

LINUX-L 2007

Subject:

Re: "build your own sputnik" (BBC article)

From:

Brian Bartholomew <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Platform Independent Linux List! <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Wed, 24 Oct 2007 00:18:06 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

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text/plain (25 lines)

> The claim was not that the total cost would be similar to airplanes,
> but that fuel would make up a similar portion (1/3 to 1/2) of the
> total cost. Thus $10 worth of fuel per pound of payload translates
> into between $20 and $30 of total cost per pound of payload. Your
> arguments which follow all suggest a higher fuel consumption but
> provide no indication that costs other than fuel should make up a
> larger portion of the total cost.

Let's say in round terms that rockets are as much harder to build than
airplanes, as airplanes are than cars.

> Of course, we all know it costs tens of thousands of dollars to put
> a pound of payload into orbit. I wonder where the rest of that money
> goes.

Engineering salaries. Logistics of a launch location which doesn't
endanger people underneath. Lots of experimental vehicles, which
explode during testing without leaving core dumps to analyze, and have
to be remade again from scratch. Customer payloads which you blow up
and have to pay for with increased insurance premiums.

> It doesn't seem to explain anything about lobbying or permits.

That's why it's science fiction.
Brian

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