Category Archives: Rocket Design Theory

Using Payload Fraction Expressions in an Example

Now that I’ve gotten the math and derivations out of the way, let’s us the payload fraction expressions in a real-world example. Let’s say you work for the chief technologist of NASA, and he’s thinking about sending humans to Mars. … Continue reading

Posted in Rocket Design Theory | 47 Comments

Calculating Gross-Mass-Sensitive Term

In the last post, I attempted to calculate a basic expression for the propellant-mass-sensitive term (lambda) and in this one I will attempt to do the same thing for the initial-mass-sensitive term (phi). In so doing, I will hopefully be … Continue reading

Posted in Rocket Design Theory | 4 Comments

Calculating Propellant-Mass-Sensitive Term

In my last two posts I’ve been talking about calculating payload fraction of a rocket using the mass ratio from the rocket equation and some vehicle parameters that have been sensitive to propellant mass and gross mass. To use these … Continue reading

Posted in Rocket Design Theory | 5 Comments

Payload Fraction Accounting for Gross-Mass-Sensitive Term

As I prepared for this post tonight, I realized that I wasn’t really modifying the rocket equation at all–I have been using the rocket equation and a summation of mass terms to find the payload fraction, which I consider an … Continue reading

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A Simple Modification of the Rocket Equation

When I was an undergrad, I spent two summers interning on the X-33 program at the Lockheed Martin Skunk Works in Palmdale, California. It was a fantastic experience and I got to meet with and work with some wonderful people … Continue reading

Posted in Rocket Design Theory | 12 Comments