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Re: was Arcjet, now solid boosters



At 06:10 PM 6/4/2001 , you wrote:
>This is not my field of expertise, but here goes. Seems to me that multiple
>solid boosters is a BAD idea. What if one of a pair fires but not the other?
>Another tumbling satellite is what we will have. Also, assume the rate of
>catastrophic failure for similarly designed motors, large or small, is
>equitable. Several small motors will greatly increase the risk of a failure
>as opposed to one or two. I believe this is the logic behind the recent
>trend of newer intercontinental aircraft having two instead of four engines.

California to Hawaii is 2400 miles of water ... no land. At the halfway 
point you are 1200 miles from the nearest land and several hours before air 
sea rescue could reach you.  It would be a 2400 mile round trip for a 
rescue plane to make. It is farther than any helicopter can go. A ship 
would take several days to reach you. A fixed wing airplane could reach you 
and drop supplies and frogman. If you have only two engines and you lose 
one ... you are going for a swim (assuming that you are fully loaded). But 
on a 747 with 4 engines ... if you lose one you are ok, if you lose two, 
you can still reach land or at least get closer to the time you can be 
reached. I prefer to fly to Hawaii only on 3 or 4 engines.

W4SCO

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