Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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SSTO supercavitating rocket

A better name may be in order for what you are about to behold.
  (+2, -3)
(+2, -3)
  [vote for,

Build a rocket shaped like a huge bullet, place an aerospike engine at the back of the rocket with an air augmenter attached, then at the nose of the rocket place small vents to vent hydrogen gas uniformly around the body of the rocket as it flies. Hydrogen is provided by the turbo pumps after they have extracted the usefull heat energy. venting is done via the venturi principle and due to the low pressure generated by doing this the turbos run more efficiently.

This has many benefits: one reduced drag, two the hydrogen will be scooped up by the air augmenter and burned as additional fuel, three it can take a portion of its oxidizer from the atmosphere and so reduce launch mass, four eliminates base drag and five air augmenter doubles as a supersonic air brake when not being powered such as during reentry.

Additionally the skin of the rocket can be made like cardboard with the channels running lenghtwise and filled with water, a small tank provides additional storage and is placed between the passenger/payload and the fuel tanks effectively doubling as a blast shield should the rocket fail, as the rocket orbits the earth the water in the skin of the craft provides micrometeor protection to the touronauts and or payload as well as some radiation shielding. Upon reentering the atmosphere the water in the skin will boil and the steam will be vented out the nose vents providing an insulating barrier between the rocket and the reentry plasma and carrying away additional heat.

The skin will also be plated in gold for bling and thermal reasons.

Spaceman Spiff, Feb 19 2009


       You spilled coffee on your keyboard, didn't you. I can tell, because your period key works only about a third of the time, and sometimes it makes commas. Also, the shift key seems a little flakey.   

       Anyway, '+' for the rocket shaped like a huge bullet place.
colorclocks, Feb 19 2009

       Ok, I think I got most of the coffee.
Spaceman Spiff, Feb 19 2009

       Less drag because of the hydrogen at the boundary layer? We're in pretty turbulent conditons at rocket speed.
Texticle, Feb 19 2009

       Turbulent at rocket speed? rocket speed is virtually all supersonic, only at transonic speeds do you encounter a lot of turbulence once you are going supersonic the flow smoothes right out unless something ahead of you is creating turbulence.
Spaceman Spiff, Feb 20 2009

       [texticle] having just possibly made an ass out of myself to one who works with rockets (your post seems to indicate that ) or possibly an areodynamic expert, I must ask the question are you? <crosses fingers-hopes not>
Spaceman Spiff, Feb 20 2009

       /I must ask the question are you?/   

       Am I an ass? Probably.
Texticle, Feb 20 2009

       previous research was done by NASA involving applying a negative pressure to the wings to suck in the inevitable turbulence caused by friction... haven't been able to find a link for positive pressure and fuselage though, yet.
FlyingToaster, Feb 20 2009

       You cowardly boners. Why don't you post why it is deserving of a fishbone?
Spaceman Spiff, Feb 20 2009

       At supersonic speed the air augmenter will have to be HUGE or attached to some kind of appendage to actually get any air unless it is at the front of the rocket. The engines on the SR-71 are just outside the shockwave so I wouldn't expect you could build a reasonable scoop for an aero spike that way. You could put the scoop at the front, but that ruins the whole burn the extra H2 thing.
MisterQED, Feb 20 2009

       I like that crosswinds will cause thrust in a compensating direction.
FlyingToaster, Feb 20 2009


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