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China Moon Space Transportation Science

Details of Chinese Moon Rocket Emerge 138

MarkWhittington writes "AmericaSpace has published the results of a study of Chinese rocket development by Charles Vick, a noted expert on the Russian and Chinese space programs who works for, using Chinese language sources. Of note are the developing concepts for a super heavy launch vehicle designated as the CZ9 or Long March 9, capable of taking Chinese astronauts to the moon and points beyond. 'Liang outlined several new Long March versions, virtually all of them testing elements that would eventually find their way into the Long March 9 that has 4 million lb. more of liftoff thrust than the 7.5 million lb. thrust NASA Saturn V. Forty-three years ago this week a Saturn V propelled the Apollo 11 astronauts to the first manned landing on the Moon on July 20, 1969.'"
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Details of Chinese Moon Rocket Emerge

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  • by Hatta ( 162192 ) on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @06:48PM (#40691709) Journal

    I'm pretty sure it's this attitude that is responsible for the Fermi paradox [].

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @07:30PM (#40692081)

    Sensibly, the Chinese appear to have looked to the most recent super heavy (100t+ payload capacity) launch vehicle that successfully flew for design cues.

    There's nothing sensible about building a super heavy launcher that will only fly every couple of years.

    Launch cost is largely driven by launch rate, so you'll save a ton of cash by splitting your lunar vehicle into smaller payloads which can launch on rockets that other people will use to launch their satellites. This is the equivalent of building a hundred-ton pickup truck to use when you move house, rather than just loading everything into a container and hiring a truck to deliver it to where you're going.

  • by mbone ( 558574 ) on Thursday July 19, 2012 @12:22AM (#40694079)

    The big problem is that liquid Hydrogen won't keep long in space. A few hours, sure. A week? Not so much. So, if you are going to use the most efficient propellant, LEO rendezvous is very dicey. (If the second launch, the one with the crew, doesn't go on time, you spent a lot of money to orbit an empty tank.)

    The Soviet plan was to land a return vehicle on the Moon, check it out, and then send a crew to land, walk over , and fly it back. The return vehicle could be hypergolic so there was no rush on the crew's timing. Everything could be sized this was to enable long stays on the Moon. They actually built this hardware, but of course it never flew. Given the close ties between the Russian and Chinese space efforts, look for the Chinese to do something broadly similar.

  • Re:meh (Score:5, Interesting)

    by cusco ( 717999 ) <> on Thursday July 19, 2012 @12:46AM (#40694183)
    When the Apollo 11 astronauts toured the world after their successful landing they were surprised to hear people everywhere, even in the USSR, exclaim "We did it!" Not "You did it", but "We", as though the entire human race had participated.

The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford