I noticed the other day that it had been over a year since I posted, and at least double that since posting on a space topic. I’ve had a bit going on for distraction, and haven’t had anything new to add in the way of space related concepts.
A few years ago with the recession going away, we started trying to expand the construction company back out to where it was pre-recession. Went through a couple of dozen people trying to expand with no success. Most couldn’t pass a drug test, or didn’t have transportation, or were unreliable, etc etc. Focusing on the company tends to restrict hobbies like blogging about space. I have my core crew and myself with no new people.
Hired an intern (paid) from Florida Polytechnic two years ago for the summer. His job was to work on remote controls for various small equipment we use. If I could not find the people to do the hard work, possibly make the work itself easier. He accomplished nothing useful in three months. Literally nothing. I have been slowly learning to get this done myself. It would be far more efficient if I could hire someone that understands the field, but have failed to find them.
We had a slowdown during the Covid lockdowns last year followed by a slammed schedule from last May through April this year. Slowing down some now with material shortages and difficulties with building departments permitting and inspections.
I got married in February this year and have had other things on my mind. We are buying a lot and will build over the next year mostly with cash. Granddaughter graduated University of Georgia this year with a degree in Biochemical Engineering. (don’t know what that means but she gets a good job right out of school) Other things going on locally.
Noticed a comment on another site that suggested that many of the concepts discussed here have been made obsolete by the success of SpaceX. While I will acknowledge that some of the concepts that made sense in the first place (many didn’t) may be less important, I still believe there is room for improvement all the time. SpaceX may be on the way to becoming the Walmart of space launch, but I believe there are many companies that are well poised to become the Dollar Stores and Discount Auto Parts of space. Those companies may benefit from anything that gives a competitive advantage. One of them may also pass on the outside when we are looking at the infield. As an aside, I am impressed with the progress SpaceX has made, while being very uncomfortable with the “hand it to Elon” meme going around.
I am inclined to restrict my limited blogging to things that are either new, of where I have some experimental evidence on a previous idea. I did an experiment a few years back that seems to support a method of doing the Thrust Augmented Nozzles that Jon wrote up only quite low tech. I have an idea of an inexpensive way to focus sunlight better over long (GEO to surface) distances and will run an experiment or two before discussing. And of course my various pump concepts still fascinate me, but would bore anyone else unless I produce some experimental proofs. Same with compensating nozzles.