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Questions tagged [rockets]

Questions regarding the boosters or thrusters used to propel man-made objects.

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Maturity of interplanetary rockets technology with known fuel supply is close?

Considerably, the scale of current jet propulsion rocket technology to leave Earth is closely connected to the target delivery mass, mission goal and the required fuel quantity to lift and deliver ...
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Why is there such a large range of stage numbers, including fractional stages?

Falcon 9 clearly has two stages, but the smaller two-stage Electron has a "kick-stage" so some might call that 2.5. The question Quantitative benefits of Atlas II's engine-dropping or 1.5 staging? and ...
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Trying To Understand This Characteristic Velocity To Force Problem

Having problems trying to solve part b of this problem. Rocket Propulsion Elements 8th - Chapter 2 A jet of fluid hits a stationary flat plate in the manner shown below. (a) If there is 50 kg of ...
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Why is Adiabatic wall temperature taken as the driving temperature in rocket engines?

Going by the definition of convective heat transfer coefficient from Wikipedia (which I have started to doubt; reason follows): $h=\frac{q}{\Delta T}$, where the $\Delta T$ is taken as the difference ...
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What's the actual oxidizer/fuel ratio in the combustion chamber of the Vulcain?

I'm working on a simple exercise on the Vulcain, but I'm having a hard time figuring out what the real O/F ratio is, in the combustion chamber. I need the mixture ratio in the chamber to calculate the ...
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1answer
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Does a rocket sound louder to the astronauts as it leaves the atmosphere?

Rocket launches are LOUD, even to nearby observers on the ground. However, once in space, the vacuum does not transmit sound, so any sound produced by the engines will be contained to the spacecraft. ...
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Reliability of self pressurization of propellant tanks for liquid engines

In a cryogenic propellant tank, the liquid always continuously changes into gas which pressurizes the tank. To pressurize the tank more we can run the liquid through the pipes along the outer wall and ...
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Pressurization line chilling while pressurizing LOX tank

I have read that in rockets and launch vehicles Helium is used for the pressurization of propellant tanks. What temperature Helium is stored at? If Helium is stored at room temperature then while ...
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1answer
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How does falcon-9 engine survive while re-entry burn without chilling ?

I've often seen that in launch sequence, "engine chilldown". I've learnt that chilling is done to avoid thermal cracking in plumbing lines and also to avoid cavitation. While re-entry, do they ...
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2answers
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If I wanted to try to terraform Mars, who would have the authority to stop me?

Let’s say hypothetically I could fund a rocket ship and pack it with lots of biomaterial. Biomaterial that would hopefully survive the impact, reproduce and potentially alter the atmosphere of Mars. ...
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57 views

Can VTVL rockets use dampers like high rise buildings to provide stability?

VTVL with long and thin body have a difficult time in obtaining stability during landing. Watch this failed SpaceX rocket landing for example: Why can't they use "...
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Gimballing angle consider for liquid rocket engines [duplicate]

I went through the documents for gimbaling of liquid rocket engines and saw that there is about 20 degrees per second of gimbaling rate (in comments). But I am not able to get, what is the maximum ...
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Effect of the location of igniter in starting liquid rocket engine

What will be the effect of off axis igniter, say a Spark igniter has to be used along with a pintle? Will the igniter being off axis have any effect on engine start? Also, will an off-center igniter ...
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What is meant by chamber pressure in rocket engines?

Is "chamber pressure" the pressure at the tip of the injector, or the pressure before combustion inside the chamber, or the pressure after combustion inside the chamber?
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What is the typical mach number at which the peak dynamic pressure occurs?

Is there any mach number range (say 0.8-1.4) where the maximum Q of the rocket should occur?
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How much would mass-production impact the cost of solid-fuel rockets?

Let's imagine that, for some arbitrary reason, solid-fuel rocket stages were needed and built en masse in factories, like planes or even like cars. How much would it drive down the cost of an ...
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Why not keep the engine for multi-stage rockets?

Rocket engines are a huge weight in a multi-stage rocket. and they are stacked like so: Fairing/Payload Fuel Engine -- Seperator -- Fuel Engine and so on, which means multiple engines. Is there ...
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How to make a orbital launch tube work?

Normal rockets would not work in a pressurized tube, but could a stage be made for the diagonal launch tube to save fuel and weight? Can the bottom stage be nuclear powered? Unlike the piston launch ...
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Why is the exhaust plume of Falcon 9 upper stage shaped the way it is?

The (single) Merlin 1D vacuum engine's exhaust plume has a symmetric shape, comprising of six distinct "inner" plumes. Why does it have this shape? Is it due to the shape/configuration of fuel ...
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Is it feasible to take liquid Helium in a Pressure Fed System?

Can liquid Helium be flowed through a heat exhanger to increase its temperature and pressure which will further pressurize fuel-oxidizer tanks.
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2answers
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Challenges of using propyne (aka methylacetylene) as rocket fuel

Propyne is a light hydrocarbon which packs quite a lot of energy in a triple carbon bound. It poses no significant health or explosion hazard by itself, and some European studies have found it to be a ...
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4answers
280 views

What is the most energy efficient & inexpensive propulsion system other than chemical fuel oxidizer that could be used in rockets?

I have read ionic/plasma propulsion system don't provide enough thrust to even lift themselves in Earth's atmosphere & photonic beamed propulsion is not in application yet so there any other ...
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Are ion/plasma thrusters sufficient for propulsion from Earth? [closed]

I'm looking to make something like a jet pack and I'm looking for super cheap thrusters to carry humans than normal chemical oxidized ones that are used in spacecrafts. I read that ionic thrusters can'...
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Why is ethylene (ethene) not considered as a rocket fuel

In an answer to this question, the brilliant diagram below was given: The chart makes chilled ethylene look like a very appealing choice, yet I don't believe it is ever used. Why not? Edit: I just ...
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1answer
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Curves on Isp/density chart, what varies along each curve?

In an answer to this question, the brilliant diagram below was given: Each fuel has a similarly shaped curve on the chart. What does that signify? what varies along the curve?
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1answer
318 views

Which rockets have their upper stages separating at(around) 100 km?

Are there any current rocket systems that go to the Karman line with just 1 stage without boosters? Recent Rockets like the Falcon 9 separate at 80 km. New Shepard launches recently touched 100 km ...
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How far has Artificial Intelligence (AI) came in satellites? [closed]

Are AIs being used in satellites? If yes, have they learned to adapt in satellites? In what way AI has benefited space exploration for us?
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Liquid propellant stored as solid

Some propellants have wildly different melting points. The most extreme case is the theoretically fantastic (and nightmarish in practice) Fluorine-Lithium-Hydrogen tripropellant, with liquid hydrogen ...
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1answer
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Density of propylene when used as rocket fuel, and advantages (if any) over RP-1?

Recently Vector space from USA has said that propylene is a better choice of fuel than RP-1. See Ars Technica's After a decade of testing, propylene rocket fuel may be ready for prime time Why is ...
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1answer
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Effects of atmospheric conditions on rocket performance?

Do atmospheric conditions including (but not limited to) temperature and barometric pressure and humidity play role in rocket performance? While weather has a strong impact on decision to launch, I'...
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215 views

What happens to rocket stages that land in the oceans, and how many are still there?

When a rocket stage is jettisoned into the ocean, does it typically sink? Assuming yes, how many rocket stages are now lying on the ocean floor? Are there, on the ocean floor, areas where there ...
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2answers
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What kind of Visual Sensors are employed aboard Rockets?

Cameras are the most common form of visual sensors and I usually see one strapped on the side of the stages as well as inside the separation module to show the separation of the rocket stages. What ...
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2answers
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What are the advantages of separating a stage few seconds after its burn out?

Will separating a stage(first) immediately after its burnout cause damage to the upcoming stage (2nd stage).? Also,do the first stage separation and second stage ignition happen at the same instant ??...
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Shorten trip to Mars

As someone adviced me in a previous thread, I want to ask a question related to Can you refuel chemical rockets to increase the speed?. If the numbers in this comment and this comment of @...
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1answer
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Vented interstage for the final stage of Saturn V

As we can see in the figure below, the interstage between the escape module and the command module is vented. Why did they go for vented interstage? Wouldn't it increases the serodynamic loadings and ...
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7answers
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Can you refuel chemical rockets to increase the speed?

Chemical rockets have max delta v ( max.speed ) about 10 km/s. Can you refuel them in deep space to increase the speed? For example Nasa Deep space habitat (DSH). Once it is assembled in orbit ...
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Could a gyrojet firearm be used in space or has it?

Saw a cool article about gyrojet weaponry and was thinking that these guns could probably be pretty useful in space. Mainly I was thinking more of a space grappling hook than space weaponry. 380 m/s ...
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Do rocket labs store propellants at higher pressure than the other rockets?

It is known that the Rutherford engines run on an electric pump-fed cycle. There must be a trade-off between the tank pressure of the electron rocket and battery capacity, for batteries are dead ...
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Why GSLV uses different stage seperation mechanism for their different varients

Why GSLV mk II is using Marman mechanism for stage separation but GSLV mk III is using Collet mechanism for stage separation?
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Marman vs collet seperation mechanism

The Marman and the Collet mechanisms are used for stage separation in rockets and launch vehicles. Which of these is most efficient, cost wise, weight wise and ease of usability wise? Which of the ...
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273 views

What is the thickness of the Falcon 9 - Electron outer casing (outer shell)?

What is the material of the Falcon 9 outer casing/electron shell, and what is the technical jargon for that specific part?
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Do rockets, launch vehicles or spacecraft contain a black-box?

Like aeroplanes, do rockets also contains some black-box kind of thing to see what went wrong at the time of failure?
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Post processing of destruction of a rocket

If a rocket fails whether on the launch pad or after the lift-off, how is it determined what component failed? What are the different methods by which failure is determined?
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How is payload fairing designed?

What are all the design criteria considered when designing a payload fairing (some are payload volume, drag) ?
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Do some solid rockets burn faster at the bottom? What's an extreme case?

Discussion in comments below this answer relate to how much solid rockets or SRBs burn bottom-to-top versus radially outward. I am sure I've seen a diagram somewhere showing that different designs ...
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3* Tonnes Unaccounted for in Falcon 9 FT Weight Wikipedia Calculation?

On the Falcon 9 FT Wikipedia page, the fully fuelled weight of Falcon 9 is only 546 300kg instead of 549,054kg as stated on SpaceX website. 546,300 kg - Wikipedia ...
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F1 engine specification?

I am collecting the engine specification data of different engines. I want to know the nozzle length and combustion chamber length and diameter of the F1 engine of Saturn-5. Please give some ...
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How is supersonic rocket exhaust able to match sea-level pressures?

I understand that the diverging portion of a rocket nozzle speeds up the flow and also expands it, in order to best match ambient pressure outside. However, doesn't higher speed flow lower the ...
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1answer
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Center of gravity calculation for any rocket or launch vehicle

I understand that the the center of gravity can be calculated by making a 3D model of the rocket or launch vehicle when it is completely filled and stationary. But in case of continuous ascent (i.e. ...