Sorry if this is the wrong place to ask this question, as its very much hypothetical.
In the computer game Kerbal Space Program , there are 3 main Staging Options that are used
- Conventional Staging where each stage separates, then reveals the engines above it, the same as used in the Saturn V Rocket.
- Onion Staging where an outer tank feeds into an inner tank and when empty is dropped, similar to the crossfeed between the Shuttle and Main Orange Tank
- Asparagus Staging where Engines and tanks surround the main rocket, which feed into the rocket beside it around the central core then to the next to the next and then to the central core which above it has the final stage, this setup in KSP allows lifting huge spacecraft into orbit.
This means that the Fuel and Oxidizer Tanks in S4 actually feed all 7 Engines, until empty and dropped, then S3 feeds all 5 until empty, the dropped, Same with S2, and then S1 is now already very high in the atmosphere traveling very fast but is basically fully fueled and continues on into orbit
This is the meat of the question, Asparagus staging in KSP is easy, just done with magical fuel lines, but in reality, it would take huge pumps and fuel lines and structural supports. so all this added weight would reduce the effective delta-V you could gain from it. but I'm not sure how much
Now I know that without specific information in terms of Mass of the stages etc it's impossible to do the actual maths, but:
Is this even realistically possible in real life? or would the drawbacks outweigh the benefits