Nuclear Blue Origin? How the Vulcan Centaur May Stop Bezos' Latest Antics (Why I Love This Rocket)

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The Angry Astronaut finally reveals why he likes the Vulcan Centaur and details his personal hopes that this rocket may end the dangerous behavior of a certain private space company. BLUE ORIGIN WITH A NUCLEAR REACTOR?!

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Vulcan Centaur

ULA’s Fuel Depot Proposal (Over 10 years ago!!)
s-flight-experience.pdf

50 comments
  1. Of all the legacy space companies, I like ULA the best, due to its impressive track record for safety and reliability. We need to keep ULA.
    Blue Origin doesn't deserve to exist, at least not in its present form. It's a joke. If ULA were to buy out BO and make some use of it, great.
    Of course I'm hyped about SpaceX but having a true competitor makes everything better.
    And it could be their missions are different enough that they don't compete head to head every time. Maybe SpaceX is better for deep space missions while ULA is better for LEO missions. But where they compete, we will have competition. I'm thinking mainly the Moon.

    If it's all done on NASA's dime, SpaceX would probably be first to the Moon and build a colony, mainly as a prototype Mars colony.
    Let's just go ahead and call that Moon Base Alpha. It's a good name.
    Many activities could happen simultaneously there. You could have SpaceX missions and ULA missions at the same time.
    Competition but also cooperation.

    The remaining issue would be NTP. We can't trust Bezos to deliver on this. It's too important.
    NTP is not a launch technology. We would need to use it in space only. But it's so powerful and efficient that it would be the propulsion of choice to get us to Mars and beyond. We need NTP.
    And I don't much care whether we test it out using SpaceX or ULA, so long as it's tested. Then once the bugs are gone, we can adapt it to any rocket of sufficient size.
    Hopefully ULA buys out BO by then and has the New Armstrong.
    Then we could have all that fun stuff like orbiting Jupiter stations.

  2. So why hasn't ULA sued BO for contract violations, excessive cost overrun (ie. profiteering), etc?

  3. Their engines are first class. If someone is going to design an engine with a nuclear stage you would want someone, like Blue Origin, to design it because of the engine track record. .

  4. If ULA's Vulcan-Centaur presents a threat to Blue Origin, and Blue Origin is an "irreplaceable" supplier of BE-4 engines to ULA, then Blue Origin would be motivated by self-interest to delay delivery of the BE-4s to ULA for as long as possible, right? … so is it a co-incidence that Blue Origin is delaying delivery of the BE-4s to ULA? … but Bezos would never do something so unethical as that, right? 😉

  5. i just love him saying that it might put jeff out of bezos even though that the engines are his, lol

  6. Why bother? BO doesn`t do anything worth the time we lose at watching videos. It would be more interesting to know what everybody else is doing, including the Russians and Chineses. What a shity humanbeing that jeff.

  7. TBH, it might be worth it for SpaceX to look at a slightly more powerful version of the Raptor, something to match the BE-4, and put that to ULA as an alternative to BO's engine.

  8. What do BO know about reactors?? How are they going from their ”space” hopper to this?? Its gona be like 20y wait for a working produkt…

  9. Why Bezos is not using his own rockets to launch his satellites? If his company is not capable to do that, much more going to the moon.

  10. Blue Origin is 'almost' ready to go to LEO; so are SpaceX and ULA. SpaceX is really almost ready to go to Mars, but ULA is really almost ready to use the Moon to develop space, LEO and cislunar, and that's a huge difference. Lunar oxygen in LEO would make Marship so much easier; everything Musk wants to do on Mars will be so much easier with lunar resources!

  11. See when you have money now let's hope that with all the nuclear payloads do not blow up NASA should have given the contract to ElonMusk SpaceX Dragon1.

  12. I don’t see how BO’s lack of an orbital launcher is relevant to their selection to work on nuclear thermal propulsion. The two tasks share very little in common. Fuel tank design and construction is the only thing that comes to mind. Other than that, launch vehicles and satellites are wildly different beasts. Its like the difference between a zeppelin and a submarine. They look vaguely similar and both use buoyancy and propellers, but you wouldn’t think less of someone’s zeppelin construction just because they don’t have a submarine yet. (That’s not to say you can’t or shouldn’t judge the companies management if they have a history of failed sub construction.)

  13. Noone and nothing is a threat to the New Glenn rocket. How can you be a threat to something that isn't there and wasn't ever going to be there in the first place…

  14. I have a radical idea!!! Maybe Blue Origin doesn’t want to actually put anything into space, but instead they developed an engine and a penis rocket to sell to the highest bidder. BO’s engine is more powerful than the raptor, and besides the horrible lander, they do have a suborbital rocket. BO developed just enough tech to make an up an coming company want to pay for it, or a foreign company without this tech want it.

  15. Doesn't New Glenn's second stage use LH2/LOx BE-3U engines though? Although I don't recall seeing any mention of refueling or reusing New Glenn second stages.

  16. In short:
    Falcon 9/Falcon Heavy/New Glenn Reuse 1st stage
    Space Shuttle/Vulcan Centaur reuse 2nd Stage
    Starship will reuse both

  17. Enter rocketlab. Still beats U.L.A. on price per ton and they've only just started

  18. I read on Reddit that Elon & Tory do respect each other, and even if not the best of friends, they are quite civil and polite with each other. In fact, Tory was one of the first persons congratulating SpaceX for the successful conclusion of Demo-2.

    Elon & Jeff, though…

  19. Because of how they designed it (Kerbal), sounds like a “no bid” by Blue Origin.
    By the way, if it sounds to good to be true, it ain’t true. They can draw anything the want in terms of capability … doesn’t mean the math balances out.

  20. Okay, so I found out I should be interested in BO because they are developing a nuclear engine.

  21. The main progress BO have made is that New Glenn doesn't look like a great big willy.

  22. Please ask GAO to explain how a company that hasn't reached Orbit in 20 years wins a Contract from Darpa to build a Nuclear rocket engine something they have zero experience in?
    🔴
    Government Accountability Office
    441 G St., NW
    Washington, DC 20548
    (202) 512-3000
    [email protected]gao.gov

  23. At the 18-minute mark, there is a very basic error. New Glenn's second stage is hydrolox, not methalox. Hence that stage's use of BE-3U hydrogen-fuel.engines. Only the first stage is methalox, and that will clearly be refueled on Earth.

    While I don't know of specific plans to refuel New Glenn's second stage in space, it's obvious that the Blue Moon lander is using hydrolox propulsion to take eventual advantage of lunar water-ice. It wouldn surprise me if Blue Origin hasn't considered other applications of lunar water, such as refueling the hydrolox New Glenn upper stage.

  24. You nailed it again. Your analysis about who at the end will stay on track in the commercial space race is quite realistic. As you said, I am very curious now about who will stay in business? SpaceX, Blue Origin? Or ULA? I am so glad to be a witness to the continual improvements in all systems. Who will be the leading edge private company to boost the Moon exploration? SpaceX fan from Europe.

  25. The 'problem' with ULA's vision is the ethos and vision of having water. H20 as an exchange medium of space/cislunar monetary exchange. Wicked and evil. Think about it. What would potential future inhabitants of any business opportunity in space get paid in. Water. Something you need to live. It is like paying for air. Simply evil. This company's entire ambition of the future of space is feudalism at galactic scale. Dude….. You need to read up on ULA and its vision before you say one more word about this future. So you need to post content. Cool. But please research.

  26. The smart re-use only brings back 70% of the cost of the rocket, but I wonder how much cheaper it is to develop that and how much cheaper the recovery operation is also. I wonder what the actual cost savings is in the long run compared to full reuse with a propulsive landed rocket once you add up the recovery and refurbishment costs. New Glenn is a much larger rocket to handle similar size payloads because it needs the margin for propulsive landing. It would be interesting to see the total cost over, say, 10 flights for each rocket.

  27. You must like corruption if you like ULA is so corrupt, 😂💜😂💜😁💜😂

  28. so they have never put a ship into space. I believe America not only designed but built some pretty good war planes with NO experience.

  29. Could a volcun 2nd push a lunar StarShip nosecone only, to artimas?
    How hard is it to come by methane around the moon? Space cow farts?

  30. I have a question why are blue origin not using bwht to build nuclear powered rockets it can't be that much different through the systems on sub

  31. I don't get it. The New Glenn second stage uses liquid hydrogen fuel, same as Centaur. They can take advantage of lunar resources, or an orbital depot just as easily.
    Sure Vulcan is planned to land its engine bay while using all of its fuel, but it still needs substantial mass for the landing – navigation, heat shield, parachutes. And it takes more time to be installed into a new first stage. New Glenn is supposed to land in one peace, be refueled and ready to fly. Of course it would need some technical inspection, but a lot less actual mechanical work.
    Of course the devil is in the details, if one of the two has a Shuttle-style reusability that costs an arm and a leg and takes forever it would mean their reusability is useless. But I don't see any signs to consider Blue Origin already doomed.

  32. Bezos and BO are all show…and no GO! One of the reasons they just lost to SpaceX for the Lunar Lander contract was they DEMANDED upfront money for development which was a VIOLATION of the NASA RFP terms and conditions.

  33. Jeff Bezos Is Blue Origin's problem. He FOMO's into aerospace just because he thinks having a lot of money gets you all you want. He has no technical skills or vision.

  34. Unfortunately, Jeff Bezos has enough money to keep doing whatever he wants with Blue Origin for as long as wants, no matter how stupid or how bradley they fail.

  35. You gotta remember, ULA is still a joint venture company of Lockheed Marin and Boeing. They have a lot of government connections and lobbyist too.

  36. “New Glenn first stage is fully reusable” 🤣🤣 It can’t be called “fully reusable” when it hasn’t even had a test fright yet. It took SpaceX more than a few attempts to get a first stage to land and I very much doubt that Blue Origin will succeed on the first attempt so this rocket won’t be reusable until it does succeed.

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