New spaceships

Roamy here.  Yesterday, XBradTC sent me this link and asked what I thought.  We need something to replace the Space Shuttle; I really don’t want to rely on the Russians any longer than we have to.  I have to agree that Boeing and SpaceX are good choices for a manned spacecraft, based on prior experience and launch readiness.  I had not heard of either Sierra Nevada or Blue Origin, but look how much SpaceX has accomplished in less than 9 years.

This also made me wonder where Lockheed Martin’s Orion spacecraft is in all this. Looks like there are some cuts, but Orion is still being developed as a deep-space exploration vehicle, rather than simply a ferry to the International Space Station.  That means more radiation-resistant materials and a longer duration design than the CCDev2 vehicles.

And just because I like putting pictures in posts…

Friction stir welding of the Orion vehicle for ground testing. These welding techniques were developed for the Shuttles External Tank.

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