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SpaceX's Starship SN4 prototype explodes after rocket engine test

May 29, 2020
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Anyone else feel like this whole rocket program is like watching a train wreck in slow motion? The prototypes look amateurish, and the launch facility looks amateurish. This is not going to end well.
 
May 29, 2020
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It's called a prototype for a reason. Have you ever seen the very first apple computer? Did look like an Iphone to you? Why put spit and polish on something that is likely to fail? That would be nothing but a waste of money. Look at the astronaut launch, they look really cool and the finished starship will too, once they finish it.
 
Dec 12, 2019
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The launch facility, specifically launch pad 39A has a vast historical legacy. It was used to send the first Astronauts to the moon, so "looks" aren't everything. Most prototypes lack "window dressing", so don't go by the looks. A test on a prototype isn't doom if it fails, but helps to reveal flaws, learn from them and fix them.
 
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Dec 20, 2019
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You know darn well that things are going BOOM!
Why bother with good looking facilities and a shiny rocket.
That's for the finalized design.
People forget Redstone?
 
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Nov 25, 2019
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I think the last person to have had such a string of rocket explosions was Wernher von Braun. One V-2 Rocket after the other exploded. Then his boss, Adolf Hitler, noticed and von Braun got the things to work. Good for him (but maybe not those living in London.)

Later, Von Braud achieved his dream and built a rocket (the Saturn V) that flew to the Moon. Maybe Musk's program goes the same way (He explodes a few dozen rockets but eventually gets to Mars) but maybe not. he needs a boss like Von Braun's who is really good at motivating his subordinates.

Seriously, We see a similarity because Musk is the only one to use von Braun's old method which was to start production BEFORE the design is finalized. Today we tend to review and simulate new designs before we build and they generally work on the first try. But this is how they used to do it. Just try until it works. It is more entertaining this way and it might cost less in the end.
 
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May 29, 2020
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Anyone else feel like this whole rocket program is like watching a train wreck in slow motion? The prototypes look amateurish, and the launch facility looks amateurish. This is not going to end well.
Sir, Your not understanding the full scope of this engineering? In Research and Development no one plans to fail and failures happen all the time. In this development of SN4 rocket engine Reliability of a Successful Firing is what you gain in knowledge so when the engine is fully developed what made this failure will not occur again. Whatever the cause Make Dam Sure it is not repeated. In aerospace there is a term called Murphy's Law. If something is going to go wrong it will and that's when everyone feels it's OK to GO too. Your might agree that the SS Main Engines worked well on all the Space Shuttles. What you don't know is how many failures we had before we brought them to perfection.
 
Nov 25, 2019
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Sir, Your not understanding the full scope of this engineering? In Research and Development no one plans to fail and failures happen all the time....
Actually this is NOT how modern R&D works. Elon Musk is using a very different method that has not been used for rocket development since the 1940s. Today we tend to finish the engineering BEFORE we build anything and it generally just works. SpaceX is building before they have a final design. Blowing up four rockets of this size in a row is unheard up today. It is likely he will lose another four.

He might save money doing it this way, who knows. But this is far from the way thngs are typically done.

My guess is that he will have to change his method
 
May 30, 2020
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Anyone else feel like this whole rocket program is like watching a train wreck in slow motion? The prototypes look amateurish, and the launch facility looks amateurish. This is not going to end well.
They are using a different development methodology known as Agile, fail fast and fail often.

If you find your weaknesses early it is usually cheaper and more efficient.

There are always failures when you are pushing the boundaries of engineering.

The other thing is they are (for better or worse) doing it in the public eye, most developments have failures, SpaceX are choosing to publish them.
 

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