[ExI] new heavy lifter

Keith Henson hkeithhenson at gmail.com
Tue Apr 5 18:46:24 UTC 2011

2011/4/5 spike <spike66 at att.net>:
> This caught my attention because I have long thought of this approach as
> compelling:
> http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/04/04/6409132-spacex-shoots-for-next-big-thing
They are saying $1000 per pound, $2200 per kg to LEO.  The cost to GEO
would be at least double, the cost per kW at 5 kg/kW for the lift
would be $22,000 plus the cost of the power sat materials and
rectenna.  Call it $24,000 per kW.  Paid off by the delivery of 80,000
kWh in a decade, the cost per kWh would be 30 cents per kWh.

Making synthetic oil out of power costs $10 per bbl for the capital
and $20 x 30 for the energy, or $610 per bbl.

Gasoline from that would sell for around $24 per gallon.

The Reaction Engine people think they can get the cost of a flight
down into the $2 million range for a high flight rate.  For that they
get 12 tons to LEO, or about 6 tons to GEO.

That's perhaps $400 per kg to GEO.  The lift cost would be $2,000 per
kW plus $1000 for parts and the rectenna.

This give a cost for power generation of around 4 cents per kWh.

Synthetic oil would be $90 per bbl and gasoline at about $4 per gallon.

Using laser boost on a Skylon type vehicle allows swapping oxygen for
payload so the payload to LEO would be 50 tons and the payload to GEO
35 tons.  You have to pay energy and capital on the lasers, but even
so, the cost of parts to GEO gets down to $100/kg and the cost per kW
to $1600.  At that the cost of power would be two cents.

The cost of synthetic oil would be around $50 per bbl and gasoline
around $2 per gallon.  If might be less if the synthetic oil companies
could buy off peak power and the numbers were expanded to where peak
demand could be met mostly from power satellites.

Power at a penny a kWh makes synthetic oil at $30 per bbl and gasoline
for under a dollar a gallon.


> It has advantages in structural dynamics to have side-by-side boosters
> instead of stacked vertically.  The aerodynamic disadvantage of that
> arrangement is more than compensated by weight savings in structural
> rigidity.  It has costs in replicating the thrust vector control so many
> times, and it has disadvantages in reliability, since the risk of failure in
> one or more of the 27 nozzles, but the design can likely tolerate any one
> failing, and some pairs, so long as they are not adjacent.
> spike
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