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SpaceX Wants to Send a Positively Massive Rocket to Mars

RATE THIS! +34
Posted in Science on 13th Mar, 2014 11:53 PM by AlexMuller

The future of spaceflight will be powered by ion engines and warp drives, right? Not just yet. There is still some uncharted territory in the world of liquid-fueled rockets, which have been powering spacecraft since the 50s, and SpaceX is testing the waters with its new Raptor engine.

 

It could be the engine that, if Elon Musk gets his wish, propels the first colonists to Mars. 

 
Right now the Raptor looks like it will be developed to deliver 1 million pounds of thrust at launch, which is certainly a step up from SpaceX’s existing engines, SpaceX's Merlin 1D delivers about 147,000 pounds at launch.
 
The Raptor will even beat out the Space Shuttle’s main engine, which delivered 375,000 pounds of thrust at launch. In other words, the Raptor is expected to be a huge engine, dwarfed only by the F-1 engine powering the gigantic Saturn V rocket.
 
Can SpaceX build a rocket engine to rival the giants? The firm has had good luck developing rocket engines in the past. Its Merlin 1D engine, which uses the traditional mixture of kerosene and liquid oxygen, has the highest thrust-to-weight ratio of any engine currently in use. But it still uses the same basic technology of all liquid rocket engines that came before it.

Tags: SpaceXspaceMarsElon MuskSpace ShuttleRaptor engine

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-14
+2
Great ambition and a long way to get to Mars! SpaceX has a good basis to be optimistic that they could solve many problems related to the engine and difficulties of landing on Mars
3 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-14
+0
Yes, Space X is doing great. Besides NASA contracts, SpaceX has signed contracts with private sector companies, non-American government agencies and the American military for its launch services Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-14
+0
Many missions successfully accomplished and some important contracts with NASA in place. It would be great to see this continue .... Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-14
+2
SpaceX is keen on new engine designs. Its seems that the Raptor engine is very interesting- it is a staged combustion engine using liquid oxygen and hydrogen to power heavy rockets.
2 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-14
+1
Other fuels are considered: a new liquid methane and oxygen rocket would have enough power to launch his envisioned Mars Colonial Transporter, a fully reusable system that could theoretically transport 100 colonists at a time to the red planet. Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-14
+2
Iaccording to information released n late 2013, the Raptor was the powerful stage combustion engine fueled by liquid methane and liquid oxygen. In a configuration similar to the Falcon heavy, with nine of these full flow engines powering three rocket stages, SpaceX could have an incredibly powerful way to get to Mars. Reply


 

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