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Gian

Jumbo Jet spaceships to the outer planets

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At the BIS Christmas lecture in December John Zarnecki spoke about how he and his team designed and built the Huygens probe for Titan from scratch. No wonder it took so long and was so expensive.

Why can't someone design a generic spaceprobe which can be used anywhere and built on a production line like Boeing airliners? Has anyone tried this?

Cheerz Gian☺

 

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I think a large part of the problem is that every mission has different requirements: the set of instruments to be included; the conditions it has to endure (temperature, pressure, corrosive); how it will land (eg. is there enough atmosphere to use a parachute, does it need rockets or airbags, etc.).

A general purpose probe that could meet all possible requirements would be massively over-engineered for any of them (and therefore too heavy and too expensive).

But for manned (or routine freight) flights, this is the sort of thing that companies like SpaceX and others are working on.

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Cheerz Mr Strange. Well at least someone could produce a generic basic probe with additional components which could be added as required according to the nature of the mission.

Thanks for the SpaceX tip I'll check them out

GIAN x

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