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Cost Per Pound From OrbitTraditional studies of Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) designs have focused on designs that are completely reusable except for the fuel. This may not be realistic with current technology . An alternate approach is to look at partially reusable launch vehicles. This raises the question of which parts should be reused and which parts should be expendable. One approach is to consider the cost/pound of returning these parts from orbit. With the shuttle, this cost is about three times the cost/pound of launching payload into orbit. A subtle corollary is that RLVs are much less practical for higher orbits, such as the one on which the International Space Station resides, than they are for low earth orbits.
Document ID
20020073112
Document Type
Conference Paper
Authors
Merriam, M. L.
(NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA United States)
Date Acquired
August 20, 2013
Publication Date
April 1, 2002
Publication Information
Publication: 26th JANNAF Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee Meeting
Volume: 1
Subject Category
Launch Vehicles And Launch Operations
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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