July 17, 2010

Incremental Advance, Breaththrough,
or Nothing Special?

Germany is developing a reusable rocket (HT: Slashdot).

The reentry vehicle has flat sides and is maneuverable to a landing area. Heating of the tip is reduced by pumping nitrogen into its porous material.

It took decades of painstaking patient work to bring us to the threshold of a commercial space era. Until recently none of the advances was dramatic. In fact, it seemed to me at the time that things were at a dead end.

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