Talk:Mars Colonial Transporter

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Super Heavy Lift Launch Vehicle (SHLV)[edit]

Falcon 9 v1.0, Falcon 9 v1.1 and SHLV comparison.svg

I tossed together this picture to give a sense of scale.--Craigboy (talk) 15:36, 8 March 2014 (UTC)

Labels would be necessary for correct interpretation, Thanks, BatteryIncluded (talk) 16:02, 8 March 2014 (UTC)
@Craigboy:—Thanks for generating this image. I believe this is a useful graphic, and is based on well-sourced information. And I think it will fit in some article. I'm not sure it is yet this one on MCT, since it is not clear that the MCT will have a 10m core and 9 Raptor engines, even though it is clear per the Raptor article published on NSG earlier this month that the booster rocket for the MCT would have a 10m core and 9 Raptor engines. Net: still thinking on where your graphic might go. Feel free to leave any ideas. N2e (talk) 10:51, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
I should rephrase that just a bit. I think your graphic, as is, totally and well describes the scale size comparison of the MCT launch vehicle to the legacy SpaceX launch vehicles.
I'm just unsure that, at the present time, the launch vehicle (engine-end view) for the MCT should be the only image in the Wikipedia article on the MCT, when SpaceX has not yet disclosed how far the "MCT" designator will be applied. For example, we don't know that the MCT name will apply to the first stage at all per any source I've seen. The "MCT" name might be more analogous to "Dragon", where Dragon flies on a "Falcon 9"; we just don't know how the BIG ROCKET of SpaceX will be named, and whether that name will include "MCT." YMMV, as well as other MMV. That's just my two cents based on what's in my head based on all the sources I've read to date. Cheers. N2e (talk) 11:20, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
During a recent interview (The Space Show - 21 March 2014), SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell stated that the SHLV didn't yet have a name (22:16). She also stated that she believed that Pad 39A would be too small for it and that they would need to build a new pad (20:40).--Craigboy (talk) 03:28, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
@BatteryIncluded:—You are correct, labels or a caption would be required before the graphic could be used in the main space. However, I believe we do have sufficient information in the various sources to write a caption that is solid. My first draft would be: "Scale size comparison of SpaceX first-stage launch vehicles: (from left) Falcon 9 v1.0 (2010), Falcon 9 v1.1 (2013), and the 10-meter diameter, 9-Raptor, booster for the future Mars Colonial Transporter." N2e (talk) 11:03, 21 March 2014 (UTC)
Yes, the addition of height/diameter and a descriptive caption including the thrust force should be informative for such comparison. Cheers, BatteryIncluded (talk) 03:32, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
We don't yet know the height or how many cores the SHLV will consist of.--Craigboy (talk) 05:00, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
@Craigboy:/@BatteryIncluded:—Okay, I have added the image to the Raptor (rocket engine) article, as there, it very well illustrates the very large size of the Raptor engines on the (now in plan) 10 m diameter "BFR", or MCT launch vehicle, or whatever we call it until such time as SpaceX chooses to name the huge first stage booster rocket. If anyone would care to look over there, and see if the caption might be improved, that would be fine with. Cheers. N2e (talk) 19:42, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
I have created a section in the MCT article now just to cover the little bit we have sources on for the MCT launch vehicle. Given that this is now a separate section, with a narrowly-defined and well-specified scope, I think that adding the graphic to the MCT article is entirely appropriate. If other's disagree, just revert my edit, and we can discuss further here. N2e (talk) 04:29, 25 March 2014 (UTC)

Rumor has it that SHLV will have single 15 meter in diameter core stage. It can't be added to the article until we have a solid source but I thought it would good to keep some of the other editors up to date.--Craigboy (talk) 06:41, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

15 metre core diameter... wowzers. That's kinda crazy:). — Gopher65talk 15:02, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

MCT Nomenclature[edit]

I'm starting to get the picture from side comments made by SpaceX that the Mars Colonial Transporter might be the in-space portion of their transport system. IE Raptor = BFE. Unnamed SHLV = BFR. MCT = the thing they're launching that will actually take people to Mars. So I think our naming system could use an update. Maybe not today, but as soon as we have enough information to convince everyone. — Gopher65talk 14:35, 23 March 2014 (UTC)

Ah, I see N2e has already made some moves in this direction when I wasn't looking:). Cool, never mind them. — Gopher65talk 14:37, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
@Gopher65:—Yeah, I created a short-term use redir called MCT launch vehicle for this purpose. I think that is about all we know about it, for now. But it does give us a place to put info that comes out about it. And I do think, as you apparently do, that the 1st stage is separate from the MCT payload carrying Mars transport vehicle. N2e (talk) 19:44, 23 March 2014 (UTC)
@Gopher65:—Well, one week later, turns out that I learned something else; but it was something that Craigboy was already aware of. The MCT launch vehicle will be either one or three cores, each with 9 Raptors, according to the NSF source. So Craigboy updated a part of the article a few days ago, and I got on yesterday and tried to make the prose consistent on that count. As we learn more, we'll no doubt be able to flesh out the article with more info per new/future sources. Cheers. N2e (talk) 03:57, 3 April 2014 (UTC)

It will have boosters[edit]

It will have boosters so why not put it in the article? my source is http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2014/03/spacex-advances-drive-mars-rocket-raptor-power/ it is 2/3 to 3/4 of the way down that it tells about it. I think it will be a larger falcon heavy modified possibly so it would be bigger than the falcon X heavy. LABHOUSE (talk) 05:25, 1 August 2014 (UTC)

There is a lot of speculation on that, and the engineers who frequent the NASAspaceflight.com forums are speculating with the best of them. Unfortunately, SpaceX has not publicly released details on the MCT launch vehicle to indicate whether it will or will not be/have a three-core version like Falcon Heavy.
In fact, that article you reference indicates "Known as the Raptor, nine of these immensely powerful engines – on one or three cores – will be utilized to send SpaceX’s Super Heavy Lift Launch Vehicle (SHLV) uphill on missions to Mars." (emphasis added) Cheers. N2e (talk) 07:46, 1 August 2014 (UTC)

Musk talks later dates for the large-size "seed [of a] citylike colony" on Mars[edit]

There is a long-form interview, in AeonThe Elon Musk Interview: On Mars, September 2014—where Musk outlines a good bit more of his long-term timeline on Mars plans than he had previously made public. Includes, for example, this bit, which might facilitate some improvement to the article:

Musk might be ready to send his first flurry of missions, to seed a citylike colony that he expects to be up and running by 2040.

‘SpaceX is only 12 years old now,’ he told me. ‘Between now and 2040, the company’s lifespan will have tripled. If we have linear improvement in technology, as opposed to logarithmic, then we should have a significant base on Mars, perhaps with thousands or tens of thousands of people.’

Musk told me this first group of settlers will need to pay their own way. ‘There needs to be an intersection of the set of people who wish to go, and the set of people who can afford to go,’ he said. ‘And that intersection of sets has to be enough to establish a self-sustaining civilisation. My rough guess is that for a half-million dollars, there are enough people that could afford to go and would want to go. But it’s not going to be a vacation jaunt. It’s going to be saving up all your money and selling all your stuff, like when people moved to the early American colonies.’ (emphasis added)

Notably, those dates are quite a bit later than previously stated in public. N2e (talk) 23:28, 30 September 2014 (UTC)