cptkrell
Posts: 3186
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 10:50 pm

Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Mon Sep 22, 2003 2:40 pm

I just watched an interesting (but I think, questionable) presentation on the TV Travel Channel where it is proposed that a "conventional 747 jetliner could *easily* tow a 1-million pound commercial space vehicle to 20,000 feet and release it". Then the space vehicle would accelerate to give the passengers an around the world sightseeing flight at supposedly near Shuttle altitudes.

I don't have my calculator handy, and even if I did, I don't think I could figure this out, but, on surface it seems to me it would be stretching feasibility to tow one million lbs from rotate to 20,000 feet? Isn't the MTOW of the "greatest" 74 right at about a million lbs? Am I missing something here, or is this just another TV program? ...Jack
all best; jack
 
USAFHummer
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Joined: Thu May 18, 2000 12:22 pm

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Mon Sep 22, 2003 2:53 pm

Did they give a source to where they possibly could have gotten that info from??? That definitely sounds a bit sketchy to me as well...

Greg
Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
 
cptkrell
Posts: 3186
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 10:50 pm

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Mon Sep 22, 2003 3:02 pm

It was seemingly a pretty well produced piece with good computer graphics, etc., USAFHummer, however, I was in the midst of attending to some time-sensitive chemical stuff and only observed what I posted. I'm sure it will be re-aired, but I was curious about the claims and wondered if anyone else had heard of such...Jack
all best; jack
 
Shenzhen
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Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2003 12:11 pm

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Mon Sep 22, 2003 3:15 pm

It is much easier to "tow" a load then to carry one. Just think of yourself as towing/pullng a wagon with 1000 pounds on it, or trying to carry it. Feasible, sure it you have a runway that will provide the length for the airspeed to get the "spaceship" in the air  Smile

I saw something very similar to what you saw, but it was a F4 fighter towing a 3 seater to 40 feet, releasing and then it firing some onboard rockets to get to space. However, the 3 seater didn't orbit the earth, just up and back down.
 
POSITIVE RATE
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Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2001 11:31 am

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Mon Sep 22, 2003 4:40 pm

I too saw the footage of the F4 towing the large glider behind it. Remember the object in tow will be producing it's own lift.
 
pmk
Posts: 609
Joined: Wed May 26, 1999 10:07 am

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Tue Sep 23, 2003 5:04 am

Well on the show they showed NASA video of what looked like a C141 towing an F4 with what appeared to be great ease. To be honest, I can see it working. Whethere the space thing would work who knows, but I'm sure a 7474 could carry quite a load by towing it.
 
markyboy
Posts: 175
Joined: Tue Sep 23, 2003 6:48 am

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Tue Sep 23, 2003 7:00 am

I think I may have the answer to your question. I watched the same show I believe a while back on Discovery Wings. The program was British and the million pounds relates to the cost of the space vehicle (£1,000,000) as opposed to the weight 1,000,000 lbs.

I may be wrong, it happened once before!

Regards,

markyboy

P.S. This is my 1st post to the airliners.net forum ever. I have been a reader of the forums for a couple of years now as well as an admirer of the fine photography. Just took me till now to get the wallet out and pay to post!
 
aaron atp
Posts: 517
Joined: Sun Mar 19, 2000 1:17 pm

A Bit Of Old Humour

Tue Sep 23, 2003 7:16 am

from the "757 glider" era at ATL... 2037's were in short supply.



if the image is clipped...
 
cancidas
Posts: 3985
Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2003 7:34 am

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Tue Sep 23, 2003 10:42 am

as that diagram suggests, why use a 747? i think that a 777 would make a much better platform for it.
"...cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home."
 
POSITIVE RATE
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Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2001 11:31 am

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Tue Sep 23, 2003 11:15 am

So is that diagram for real? A 777 could tow a 757? I'd love to see that for real.
 
cancidas
Posts: 3985
Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2003 7:34 am

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Tue Sep 23, 2003 12:22 pm

most likely the 777 would have to be empty.
"...cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home."
 
USAFHummer
Posts: 10261
Joined: Thu May 18, 2000 12:22 pm

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Tue Sep 23, 2003 3:23 pm

The topic of the post is with the diagram is "A bit of old humour" so Im inclined to believe that its not real...whoever came up with it had one heck of an imagination though, kudos to them!

Greg
Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
 
cptkrell
Posts: 3186
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 10:50 pm

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Tue Sep 23, 2003 10:19 pm

Thanks for the replies; I'm still searching for a re-run of the program I mentioned. Maybe it isn't so far-fetched, afterall...hack
all best; jack
 
aaron atp
Posts: 517
Joined: Sun Mar 19, 2000 1:17 pm

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Wed Sep 24, 2003 6:20 am

Actually, someone pulled that picture off my website and asked a question about it on this forum about 2 years ago.

The gentlemen at the Delta TOC were unable to overhaul 2037s fast enough, so there were always quite a few 757 'gliders' as we called them (aircraft without engines) in front of the big hangar and the paint hangar in atlanta.

I assure you that DL had no plans of such a thing (although they probably would have if they thought the FAA would have let them).


aaron
 
cptkrell
Posts: 3186
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 10:50 pm

RE: Towing A Passenger "space Vehicle" W/ 747

Wed Sep 24, 2003 11:36 am

The DAL 757 glider pic is cool (for intended ops chuckles), however, now that I recall, DC3 gliders were at least experimented with during WWII with engines removed and cowlings aerodynamically fared over with blunt, bullet-nose profiles...Jack
all best; jack

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