- Conference date: 26-30 Jan 1997
- Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico (USA)
Thrust augmentation offers the Single Stage to Orbit (SSTO) space launch vehicle improved payload capability while reducing vehicle weight and cost. Optimization of vehicle configuration and flight profile are studied. Using a 612,000 kg Gross Lift Off Weight (GLOW) SSTO with three strap-on motors, payloads in excess of 18,000 kg to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) are achievable. Emphasis is placed on finding vehicle optimums in the 9,000 kg payload range to capture over 80% of commercial payloads. Strap-on boosters allow a small SSTO vehicle to fly with a mass fraction of only 0.88 and engines operating at 445 sec vacuum specific impulse. Payload sensitivity due to variations of mass fraction, and pitch rate are quantified.
- Space vehicles
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