Author Topic: Space Fighters  (Read 12641 times)

Offline GTX_Admin

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Space Fighters
« on: July 02, 2012, 02:41:01 AM »
Hi folks,

I was looking at this picture (see below) and wondered if we could set up an arms race for space fighters.  E.g.  Take F-102/F-104/F-106/Avro Arrow/MiG/Su...etc and whack on top of whopping booster to create ultimate interceptor/crude space fighter.



BTW, the picture actually shows a design proposal for a scaled-down, piloted three-stage space ship.

From the book "Worlds in Space"
by Martin Caidin
illustration by Fred L. Wolff
(1954)
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Offline Weaver

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2012, 03:50:21 AM »
Okay, let's see......

Most of the booster kits are 1/144th scale, so take a 1/100th F-105 (there was one in the Ben Hobby/Tamiya range, but it's not been re-released yet), replace the wings & intakes with 1/72nd Starfighter wings, fit a smaller cockpit canopy, then put a pod on each wingtip. The idea is that the original jet nozzle is now a rocket motor for space flight, and the tip pods conceal small jet engines for cruise-to-landing, with jettisonable nose and tail cones. the overall configuration is a bit like a scaled-up Sud-Est Trident.

Any British equivalent would be hamstrung by the unsuitability of Britain as a launch site (too far north), so we'd probably go for air-launch, with something like an uber-Vulcan carrying a fighter derived from an SR.177 or Avro 720 with a tandem boost pack.

Make the date late enough, and you can use Concorde as a basis for the carrier instead. Here's a quick'n'dirty (but expensive) way to make the carrier: start with two 1/144th Concordes and one 1/72nd one. Graft the two 1/144th fuselages together nose to tip, fit the 1/72nd wings, then put all eight 1/144th engines under them. Blank all the windows off because it's just a flying fuel tank. Now add the space fighter of your choice.....
« Last Edit: July 02, 2012, 05:17:14 AM by Weaver »
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Offline RussC

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2012, 03:52:12 AM »
Have seen these before, Caidin made a series of space books, many with illustrations by my favorite artist Chesley Bonestell. Some of those space fighters actually launching from underground silos, others taking off from above ground bases right on the Manhattan waterfront.

Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2012, 04:19:06 AM »
A different take on this...

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Offline raafif

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2012, 06:57:12 AM »
you mean like my Booster-Lightning ?



        not as silly as Spitfires in Space  (Dr Who's lost all cred in my world)

Offline Weaver

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2012, 08:04:15 AM »
How about marrying that Von-Braun-esque conical booster to a Barnes-Wallis Swallow-style vehicle? The wings could sit down the sides of the booster for take off, sweep forward in orbit to put the reaction controls on their tips as far as possible from the CofG, sweep back again for re-entry, then forward again for landing.
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Offline upnorth

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2012, 04:45:44 PM »


Any British equivalent would be hamstrung by the unsuitability of Britain as a launch site (too far north)....


Not at all!

Britain would have any one of a number of former colonies in closer geographic proximity to the equator to strike a deal with for setting up a launch site. It would be no different than France shooting their Arianne rockets from Guyana.

India or Malaysia would be perfect places inside the Commonwealth to set up such a launch site. Both are quite close to the equator and both are quite industrialized nations with technically skilled work forces. Not only would you have a good location, you'd also have a good local labour pool to hire from as well to save you from bringing in too many staff directly from Britain.

Definitely doable for Britain

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Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2012, 05:01:41 PM »
One could also go for a polar orbit.
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Offline AGRA

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2012, 05:05:57 PM »
What about Ascension Island, is very close to the Equator, highly secure, all British and has the most perfect name for a space launching station.

Offline upnorth

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2012, 06:40:23 PM »
What about Ascension Island, is very close to the Equator, highly secure, all British and has the most perfect name for a space launching station.

Geographically and security wise, it would be very attractive. However, from a logistical and manpower perspective it would get very expensive very quickly.

Everything would have to come in by ship or plane, including much of the food and basic living essentials.

Bringing in the program specific gear by out-sized cargo plane or ship is one thing, doing the same for all the food and basic living staples for a large staff is quite another.

Would it not be better to set up in a place that has enough local industry so that you didn't need to waste valuable cargo space on a ship or plane with toilet paper, soap and whatnot? If you set up where there was a local producer of such basics, you could just use land based transport means to get it to the facility.

Security is great, but save it for the things that really need it. Who's going to hold up a truck full of locally produced toilet paper, toothpaste or other such basic consumables?
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Offline AGRA

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #10 on: July 21, 2012, 07:52:09 PM »
Security is great, but save it for the things that really need it. Who's going to hold up a truck full of locally produced toilet paper, toothpaste or other such basic consumables?

They don’t exactly produce toilet paper and the like in Guyana nor back in the original days in the Kazakh steppe or swamp lands of Florida or deserts of Woomera. Space launching sites tend to require very specific logistics that aren’t available locally anywhere. And the manning needs are pretty low so the consumables are easily shipped in even at the most remote of locations.

Further the idea that the UK would launch military rockets from post-independence India or Malaysia is frankly ludicrous. Neither nation has the kind of close relationship with the UK to allow such access nor would be trusted by the UK with national territorial control over such an important facility as launching for space weapons.

Offline upnorth

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2012, 07:58:27 PM »
OK, fair points.

Getting beyond arguments of location, economics and labour; I think the size of the actual vehicle has to be considered.

Size that works as a fighter in the atmosphere, may be woefully unsuited for the same job outside the atmosphere. Crew sustainability will be critical as will strength of the frame to survive multiple launches and recoveries through the atmosphere.

I think size will be important on both fronts as it will allow more life support measures for the crew and give designers more room to work in strengthening structures without sacrificing space for fuel and propulsion.

To illustrate my point; the Tupolev Tu-22 Blinder and Tu-128 Fiddler aircraft could both likely be strapped to the side of an Energiya for launch. Both are quite sizable designs that could accommodate a respectable amount of life support for the crew, space for decent fuel and propulsion once separated from the booster as well as good weapons loads.

The Blinder is a bit bigger than the Buran shuttle and the Fiddler a bit smaller, but if I look at the size relationship of the Buran to the Energiya, I see no reason why either Tupolev design couldn't be fitted to the Energiya too.

The Blinder already has those two big engine pods which could be used to house rocket engines. It also comes with the option for all internal carriage of weapons or a large one semi-recessed.

You could use the Blinder and Fiddler as a short and long range interceptor combination.

Following on the "Bigger is better" idea, some other aircraft I can see as having space fighter potential are:

European
Mirage IV
TSR.2
Javelin

American
A-12/SR-71
B-58 hustler
F-111

Soviet/Russian
Tu-22 Blinder
Tu-128 Fiddler

Other
Avro Arrow

I would think smaller size machines would be best based on space stations with the intent of keeping them close to the base and not taking them back and forth through the atmosphere.
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Offline Jeffry Fontaine

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2012, 02:38:34 AM »
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Offline Weaver

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2012, 08:41:35 AM »
Re British space launches, it's not just a matter of being near the equator: you also need a large expanse of somewhere uncontrovertial to the east of you in which to drop the occasional mis-fires. Florida is perfect for the Yanks because it gives them all of the Atlantic to crash in, while Sibera provides the Russians with the same facility. Try the same thing from Britain and it comes down in highly-populated Western Europe, killing hundreds, if your lucky. If you're unlucky, it comes down in Eastern Euope and starts WWIII..... :o

Somewhere in the Carribean would probably be best, but how much of a tourist paradise are you willing to concrete over to make a launch facility? I still think it would be best to use an airfield in that area as a base for an air-launched orbiter.
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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2012, 10:20:46 AM »
Launch Westward like Iarael does.  It means less payload but does solve the problem.
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Offline Queeg

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #15 on: October 18, 2012, 06:35:05 PM »
My take on some space fighters and warships .....





Offline Logan Hartke

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #16 on: October 18, 2012, 09:32:53 PM »
I like the white middle one.  It has a nice "Jonny Quest in Space" look to it.

Cheers,

Logan

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #17 on: October 18, 2012, 10:35:05 PM »
I like the white middle one.  It has a nice "Jonny Quest in Space" look to it.

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Logan

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Offline Logan Hartke

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #18 on: October 18, 2012, 10:44:35 PM »
Is that Race Banner in the cockpit? Where is Bandit?  ;D

If I could find the cockpit, I'd tell you!   ;D

Cheers,

Logan

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #19 on: October 18, 2012, 11:27:01 PM »
Great variety of styles. Very nice collection of starships.  :)
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Offline Litvyak

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #20 on: October 18, 2012, 11:36:43 PM »
Euh... Britain needs launch space? How about in Canada? Got the same sort of natural 'facilities' available as in Siberia...
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Offline Weaver

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #21 on: October 18, 2012, 11:45:16 PM »
Euh... Britain needs launch space? How about in Canada? Got the same sort of natural 'facilities' available as in Siberia...

Too far north: you also need to be near(ish) to the equator for maximum efficency.
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Offline Litvyak

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #22 on: October 18, 2012, 11:47:49 PM »
Where are Russia's launch sites, latitude-wise?
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Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #23 on: October 19, 2012, 02:23:45 AM »
Where are Russia's launch sites, latitude-wise?


The main one is Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan which provides it an acceptable (though obviously less then ideal) location for equatorial launches:



Of course, if it weren't for the proximity to the USA and the danger posed by launching anything from there, Cuba could have provided an interesting launch site for the USSR...hmmm, maybe a seed there for a whiff story...

« Last Edit: October 19, 2012, 02:52:18 AM by GTX_Admin »
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Offline Queeg

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #24 on: October 19, 2012, 02:51:49 AM »
Is that Race Banner in the cockpit? Where is Bandit?  ;D

If I could find the cockpit, I'd tell you!   ;D

Cheers,

Logan

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Offline Litvyak

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #25 on: October 19, 2012, 02:53:21 AM »
Ah, so the Russians are cheating... :P
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Offline Weaver

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #26 on: October 19, 2012, 07:52:32 AM »
Typed all this once after work then lost it in a system time out.... :icon_crap:

Russian/former Russian sites:

Baikonur/Tyuratam : 46 deg North
Kapustin Yar: 48 deg North
Vostochny : 51 deg North (New facility in the Russian Far East to replace Baikonur, which is in now-independent Khazakstan)


Other sites:

Woomera : 31 deg South
French Guiana : 5 deg North
Kennedy : 28 deg North


High latitude sites:

Kodiak : 57 deg North
Plesetsk : 63 deg North


Although the southernmost points in Canada are at about 41 deg North, they're in the Ontario "salient" so any space launches from there would have to cross the north eastern USA, creating safety and political issues. Most of the practical launch sites in Canada are well north of it's 49 deg southern border, which is why, when looking for a "Commonwealth" launch site, Woomera was the clear winner.

You can launch rockets from northern sites, as Plesetsk and Kodiak demonstrate, but they are mostly used for high-inclination polar orbits and can't be used economically for equatorial or geo-stationary ones, which is where most of the commercial revenue lies. Polar orbits are mostly of interest for scientific and military purposes, so their rewards are not financial in nature.

Even with their sites being further south than most theoretical Canadian ones, the Russians still pay a price for their geography, getting less payload per pound of rocket than launches from more equatorial sites. Since any large-scale British launch programme requires a stretch of the imagination and wallet, it's hard to see it volutarily accepting the extra penalties of a Canadian launch site when Woomera was available. The running costs of a large space programme (i.e. expended rockets) would be much more of a burden on a limited budget, so the pressure would be on to develop the most efficent launch site as soon as possible, even if that meant investing in exotic options like sea or air launch.

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Offline elmayerle

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2012, 01:01:23 PM »
A joint RN, RAN, RCN effort for a sea-launch Black Knight or development thereof?

Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #28 on: May 17, 2014, 05:06:15 AM »
Something I found online:












I have a kit that is going to get the same treatment as the last one.
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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #29 on: May 17, 2014, 12:16:57 PM »
Oh, yeah!

I saw the work of that guy on DeviantArt, I think... Lots of ideas and this one is my favorite.

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Offline Silver Fox

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #30 on: May 17, 2014, 02:23:37 PM »
The MK VII Viper looks good in those schemes. The Mk II does too, but the Mk VII looks weird most times so the effect is really noticeable. :)

Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #31 on: May 18, 2014, 04:31:48 AM »
Another that deserves to be here:




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Offline Volkodav

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #32 on: May 19, 2014, 09:33:55 AM »
Space, Above and Beyond

Offline mrvr6

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #33 on: May 19, 2014, 11:50:46 PM »
always liked the look of it but the visibility looks terrible lol

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #34 on: May 20, 2014, 03:15:02 AM »
Space, Above and Beyond

Indeed - I have a 1/48th kit that will get RAAF markings…after all they were operating on a RAAF base. ;)
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Offline taiidantomcat

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #35 on: May 22, 2014, 07:48:31 AM »
Space, Above and Beyond

Indeed - I have a 1/48th kit that will get RAAF markings…after all they were operating on a RAAF base. ;)

I actually scratched a 1/24 scale one when the show was still on, using cardboard.  :) and tape (pretty good for a 12 year old) I have been thinking of ways to scratch build some versions properly  :)
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Offline philp

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #36 on: May 24, 2014, 02:11:58 PM »
While I have always liked the look of stuff like the X-Wing, Viper, F-302, etc. one of the best stories I read on the subject described a completely different idea.  Can't quite recall the actual shape but was more like a cube or an ovoid shape with the pilot buried in the middle of the ship in a cocoon like cockpit to absorb stresses from drastic maneuvers.  Think it had an engine in the front and rear so it could decelerate as quickly as it accelerated.  Or it rotated to decelerate.  also think there were maneuvering jets so that it could go sideways, etc.  Really need to find the story and read it again.

Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #37 on: May 25, 2014, 02:57:22 AM »
Something perhaps a little less exciting than the ones shown so far, but at the same time, potentially the closest to a real world space fighter:  the Soviet Soyuz PPK from 1964:



The Soyuz 7K-PPK (pilotiruemiy korabl-perekhvatchik, manned interceptor spacecraft) was a revised version of the Soyuz P manned satellite inspection spacecraft.  The PPK provided the cosmonaut with a standoff capability for destruction of enemy satellites. For this purpose the Soyuz was equipped with eight small rockets.

As in the Soyuz P, the spacecraft would rendezvous with the enemy satellite. But the cosmonaut would remain in the spacecraft, using visual and other on-board systems to inspect the satellite. If the satellite was to be eliminated, the Soyuz would back off to a distance of 1 kilometer, and then destroy it using the on-board rocket-mines. Delays in the development of the Soyuz led to abandonment of this plan.
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Offline sotoolslinger

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #38 on: May 25, 2014, 03:20:03 AM »
First off Queeg is a pretty fikken great designer ain't he 8) :-* and B where the ef do you find models of the Hammerhead? :o I didn't even know they existed :-\ ???

Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #39 on: May 25, 2014, 03:56:49 AM »
where the ef do you find models of the Hammerhead? :o I didn't even know they existed :-\ ???


Mine is a 1/48 one by Comet Miniatures:



They are out of production now.

You can however get a 1/72 one from Fantastic Plastic:



Click on image to go to store.
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Offline raafif

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #40 on: May 25, 2014, 06:16:00 AM »
the Games Workshop guys used to have very similar designs in their Warhammer 40K range (plastic, resin and also miniture resin ones).
Google "Warhammer Hammerhead" - approx 1/48th scale

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #41 on: May 25, 2014, 06:41:07 AM »
Another real world "space fighter":



And it has been superbly modelled by SAustin16:


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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #42 on: May 27, 2014, 02:47:34 AM »
F-35 replacement announced  ;):

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Offline buzzbomb

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #43 on: May 27, 2014, 06:29:38 AM »
That "real world" jobbie is really nice.. and totally plausible.

Most likely.. crew station aside.. they are up there as hunter-killer satellites.


Offline sotoolslinger

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #44 on: May 28, 2014, 07:09:13 AM »
I like this un


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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #45 on: January 11, 2017, 03:39:14 AM »
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Offline Camthalion

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #46 on: February 15, 2017, 06:06:29 AM »


Any British equivalent would be hamstrung by the unsuitability of Britain as a launch site (too far north)....


Not at all!

Britain would have any one of a number of former colonies in closer geographic proximity to the equator to strike a deal with for setting up a launch site. It would be no different than France shooting their Arianne rockets from Guyana.

India or Malaysia would be perfect places inside the Commonwealth to set up such a launch site. Both are quite close to the equator and both are quite industrialized nations with technically skilled work forces. Not only would you have a good location, you'd also have a good local labour pool to hire from as well to save you from bringing in too many staff directly from Britain.

Definitely doable for Britain

I seem to recall someone, can't remember who, talking about building a launch facility on Cape York some years ago.

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Re: Space Fighters
« Reply #47 on: February 16, 2017, 02:29:48 AM »
There was a lot of interested in a Cape York Space Launch complex but it all died.  Just do a search on "Cape York Space Base" and you will get plenty of articles and the like such as this:  https://www.tropicnow.com.au/2016/may/13/cape-york-space-station-wouldve-been-out-of-this-world.html

Its a pity that it never happened as both myself and my wife would probably be working there if it had happened.  Cape York is also a far, far more practical solution than Woomera which really has only ever been a test range and extremely unpractical as a space launch facility despite what is sometimes said.
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