Amazing rocket control technology has just been developed for launch and landing of rockets.
See it at: http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=72a_1373080361#tuRbRU5K30UmUZIH.01
Elon Musk makes Werner von Braun and the rest look like amateurs. He may be the Henry Ford of our era.
He's also known for making a mint creating Paypal, gambling on the Tesla cars, and then on to SpaceX, supplying the Space Station.
Shucks, Flash Gordon used to land like that decades ago.
This has been done only once or twice before, and not with this precision. The DeltaX in the 90s, and I think the soviets did some work too. Since the base of his technology is Von Braun's (and Werner's was R. Goddard) I hardly think he is making anyone look amateurish, especially he's using computers and the older generation used slide-rules.
It is nice seeing what can be done when bureaucracy is moved over a bit.
When the U.S. Navy was thinking of going to LPH type ships for helicopters they developed a 4K 'computer', yes 4K which was radical for the time, to match the ships actual roll and yaw to the helicopter blade pitch control. Sometimes resulted in a hard landing, but the technology did exist in its infancy that long ago.
Chris, Henry didn't invent the automobile, either, but he had the mechanical aptitude, foresight, and the guts to put the world on wheels. Elon Musk has that combination of talents. If you get Bloomberg tv, watch for their story on him.
I think Musk took a wrong turn with the electric car, but maybe battery tech will catch up to the demand. The batteries in his Model S weigh 1,000 pounds. The Model S moniker was chosen with the Model T Ford in mind.
Right, and Henry wasn't an amateur either. I don't own a television.
The 1950's space movies revisited! Cool!
Bloomberg tv has a couple of series on people. One is "Movers & Shakers", and the other is "Game Changers", which I believe covered Elon Musk's life, from growing up a nerd in South Africa, to fleeing to Canada to dodge the Apartheid govt military draft, to his business ventures.
Of course I used the wrong term of amateur for von Braun. I have heard that he was the kind of genius who couldn't tie his own shoes, whereas Ford and Musk drove an idea to its final outcome.
Maybe you can play Game Changers from www.Bloomberg.com .
To my surprise, Tesla is now profitable. They can change the Model S battery pack faster than you can fuel an Audi.
Wow! That took A LOT of fuel for that short flight. While the control is very impressive, I'm afraid it does not have much of an application for anything but an impressive demonstration, using the old style fuels technology of the solid booster or Oxy/Hydrogen mix. Both very heavy fuels to carry. The only reason it did not go any higher than 325.17 meters is because that is probably all the altitude the engineers calculated it could get without running out of fuel on its' way back down.
Don't get me wrong. I am impressed and do not mean to diminish this accomplishment, but with the current fuel technology, it is only good for what you just saw. The gyroscopic and control technology, however, can be used in the future whenever new, more efficient fuels have been discovered and developed which allows for further flights, but until then, we must be satisfied with 325.17 meter hops. Jim Patrick
Jim: The nice thing about this is that now retros can be used to land once they are up. Using a lifter to take it to say, the Moon, then landing tail down with enough fuel to take off and come back from earth without redocking like they did with the LEM. I believe that you are correct about the fuel limits. Heinlein had a lot to say about keeping enough reaction mass to get home.
I'm waiting for Mr Spock to just beam me up.