Good point pathfinder_01. I really hadn't thought of the coking problem myself. Probably in the long run, we need to look at a lunar ice exporting business, to be processed in space as needed. I think the technology to do that is not far off, even for raw unprocessed lunar ice:pathfinder_01":y2j7ljsj said:The problem with kerosene isn't storage. Kerosene stores well in space. LOX\Kerosene rocket engines generate coke. On earth this isn't a big problem because the engine is only going to be used once (or perhaps serviced then reused in an RLV). They are designed to work with the coking problem. However an engine that cokes itself up might be a poor choice for an in space engine that needs to be used many times without servicing.
Also a Kerosene first stage and hydrogen upper stages have a synergy. The hydrogen upper stage will mass less than a Kerosene one while lox\kerosene is better thrust than lox\loh. You can get better performance than each alone. LOH is expensive, but the cost of propellant is rather a small part of the whole system. A totally Kerosene rocket would have to mass more than a mixed one to do the same work or cut into payload margin.
Inexpensive Metal Catalyst Can Effectively Generate Hydrogen from Water
If in-space refueling is our goal, maybe we need to re-think our current lunar strategy:
“We’ve been there before. Buzz has been there.” - Dr Paul Spudis
New data suggests massive lunar ice chunks
Personally, if the above is true, I think it would be a major "tactical mistake" for our space exploration program to ignore it, and go chasing around the solar system "running on empty"....