October 14, 2016 at 09:43PM
"In contrast to computers and cars, rockets cannot be systematically improved." #readingToday

In contrast to computers and cars, technologies with which Musk is familiar, rockets cannot be systematically improved. Specific impulse—the number of pounds of thrust produced per pound of propellant—is the key parameter capable of producing significant cost reductions in access to space. Technological solutions to improving specific impulse include building lighter rockets or finding better fuels. And rocket scientists optimized both of those when Eisenhower was president. That leaves the physics problem: Mass versus gravity. The only way to work around it is through economies of scale, driving down operational costs through an increased launch tempo.

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