Linked Questions

19
votes
3answers
4k views

Why is Falcon 9's shape so tall and skinny?

Compared to most rockets I know of, Space X's Falcon 9 seems unusually tall and skinny. The v1.1 version is nearly 70m tall, yet only 3.6m thick. For comparison, Atlas V is 58m tall and 3.8m thick, ...
14
votes
1answer
3k views

Why does the CRS-8 Falcon 9 rocket appear to be swaying before launch?

I just saw the video from the YouTube channel SpaceX Edits titled SpaceX B1021: The First Rocket to Fly Twice (a supercut of highlights mentioned in the Pod Bay, and noticed the Falcon 9 for the CRS-8 ...
11
votes
1answer
3k views

After Crew Dragon launch abort, was Falcon 9's detonation intentional?

On 2020 January 19 SpaceX launched the Crew Dragon capsule and tested an in-flight abort, where the capsule separated from the Falcon 9 shortly after launch. Many headlines claim that the Falcon 9 ...
4
votes
4answers
601 views

Is a Falcon Semi-Heavy plausible?

Some rockets use strap-on boosters to match the payload requirements, even sometimes launching with only one strap on. Is this a plausible scenario for Falcon to be strapped together with only one ...
10
votes
3answers
567 views

How are SRBs and solid rocket motors transported safely? Do they ever end up on trucks driven down public highways?

The BBC News article The Rocket Scientists Mixing Up a Giant Firework begins with: In a remote corner of tropical South American jungle, French scientists are mixing a ‘cake’ with a difference – a ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Why are these Falcon 9 1st stage bodies (apparently) wrapped in black plastic for transport?

The Teslarati article SpaceX’s third Block 5 rocket heads to Texas test site as launch marathon nears includes the image and caption below. Is this an unused rocket body being transported for launch, ...
7
votes
1answer
333 views

explain to a 6 year old the parts of a rocket

The curious 6 year-old sitting next to me asks "how do you build a rocket?" What kind of rocket? "A big rocket that flies". (He came by when I was answering a question and he was very excited when I ...
9
votes
1answer
989 views

Just how much can tall skinny rockets bend? (roughly, safely)

Below is a GIF I prepared and used in an earlier question, and the answer seems quite reasonable. With a height to diameter ratio of about 70 m to 3.7 m (nearly 20:1) a weight-conscious design, ...
9
votes
1answer
452 views

Why would a significant non-zero angle of attack be an advantage during 1st stage burn?

From videos of both the SES-10 launch shown in @RusselBorogrove's question, Cause of apparent plume deflection on SES-10?" and the Block 5 launch Bangabandhu Satellite-1 Mission at ...
7
votes
1answer
304 views

Falcon 9 fairings stability on reentry

On the descent of the fairings into the atmosphere how is stability provided? Why does it not start to rotate in a uncontrollable fall but reenter gently without apparently damage on the interior ...
2
votes
1answer
984 views

Why spray LOx into combustion chamber, if GOx is more effective?

Are there any issues in transforming the liquid oxygen into gaseous oxygen before injecting into the combustion chamber? Gaseous Oxygen will be readily available for combustion and will mix well with ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

What determines rocket height/width?

I was wondering what determines the height/width ratio of a rocket? What are factors that influence the choice between a tall skinny rocket like Falcon 9 or a wider shorter (in ratio) like Ariane 5 or ...
3
votes
1answer
274 views

Most noodle-like (highest aspect ratio) orbital launch vehicle ever?

Just how much can tall skinny rockets bend? (roughly, safely) Why is Falcon 9's shape so tall and skinny? If not constrained by underpasses, etc., would Falcon 9 have been less of a flying noodle? ...
6
votes
0answers
535 views

Why is the diameter of the boosters of some launch vehicles smaller than the diameter of their payload fairing?

Whilst watching yesterday's Starliner launch I've noticed how skinny that Centaur (3.1m) looks compared to the CST-100 (4.5m). Looking up the Atlas V I was amazed to find out that it has even larger (...
4
votes
1answer
126 views

What criteria influence launcher aspect ratio?

One factor when designing a launcher is the total $\Delta V$ required. For a given $\Delta V$, engineers can define the propellant quantity. From this quantity they can define the volume of the ...

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