Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Virgin Galactic

Nikxice

Active Member
Oct 31, 2014
1,069
1,796
Hudson, NH
it’s Morgan Stanley. I swear their analysts are just mouth pieces to manipulate their coverage stocks for their in house traders.
And quite amazingly, for several weeks now their efforts have worked extraordinarily well. Got to hand it to 'em, their analysts even found a way to work in a mention of TSLA, likely a not to a subtle way to pump SPCE by inferring "buy the hot ones now". Until they fly commercial pax, SPCE looks like a tempting short. Although, if Mark Spiegel actually reads these forums and he decides to get in, shorting SPCE would probably turn out to be a really bad deal!
 
Last edited:

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
2,679
3,575
Bay Area
MS antics aside, obviously most of us think PTP travel actually has a lot of potential. IMHO 6 people ostensibly launched from existing airports seems like it can happen faster than something like X00 people on Starship.

Growth also seems faster as Virgin can open up far away markets simply by basing carrier aircraft at distant ports of call. That’s going to be much faster, cheaper, and less complicated than building some kind of vertical lunch infrastructure (like is necessary for starship).

Ultimately they will be complimentary, like biz jet vs commercial traffic. Etihad hasn’t put flying private on notice...
 

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
5,748
7,003
Santa Fe, New Mexico
What is the market for a spaceplane that can take 6 passengers from New Mexico to London in two hours, but then has to wait two days for the White Knight carrier plane to get to London so it can launch to return? Not very large, methinks.
MS antics aside, obviously most of us think PTP travel actually has a lot of potential. IMHO 6 people ostensibly launched from existing airports seems like it can happen faster than something like X00 people on Starship.

Growth also seems faster as Virgin can open up far away markets simply by basing carrier aircraft at distant ports of call. That’s going to be much faster, cheaper, and less complicated than building some kind of vertical lunch infrastructure (like is necessary for starship).

Ultimately they will be complimentary, like biz jet vs commercial traffic. Etihad hasn’t put flying private on notice...

I don't see how this would work. The VG spaceplane doesn't get anywhere near orbit. It basically goes up to the Karmann line then glides down. Going from Texas to Shanghai, unless someone explains to me how such a thing would be possible, makes no sense. Even a trip from Texas to New York doesn't seem possible. These planes just don't have enough fuel to go very far at all. The White Knight carrier aircraft is lovely but really not fast compared to a jumbo jet.

Starship, on the other hand, with a Superheavy booster doing a lot of the work reaches orbital velocity. At 17,000 MPH you can get anywhere on the planet pretty fast.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: philw1776

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
5,748
7,003
Santa Fe, New Mexico
To clarify, I’m not suggesting the existing product be used for PTP; I assume Virgin would say the same.

Strangely, I just spoke with someone last week who worked at Spaceport America (I live in New Mexico) and he said that PTP is exactly what they were planning to do. It wasn't until your post that it occurred to me that it doesn't work.
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Sep 21, 2013
19,198
13,848
San Mateo, CA
I just spoke with someone last week who worked at Spaceport America (I live in New Mexico) and he said that PTP is exactly what they were planning to do.
”Were planning”? As in no longer plan to do that? Or have always planned to do that?

If the latter, that is news to me. And as you point out, their current hardware does not seem anywhere near capable for that purpose.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Grendal

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,387
19,976
San Diego
Does anyone else look at VG and think the whole thing is half baked? It has flown, what, twice? It’s a solid fuel rocket which means it isn’t very controllable once ignited. Do they have any abort safety system at all? I am just dreading reading about a fatal flight one day.
 

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
5,748
7,003
Santa Fe, New Mexico
”Were planning”? As in no longer plan to do that? Or have always planned to do that?

If the latter, that is news to me. And as you point out, their current hardware does not seem anywhere near capable for that purpose.

Sorry I wasn't clear - are planning on P2P.

As a future service or with their existing equipment?

My understanding is that it is with current equipment, just a lot more of the equipment. That design really can't do much more than they've already created. For the most part, it can't even do a decent sub-orbital flight like they want it to. I don't see how you could modify it for P2P to work effectively either. As far as I can tell, VG is going to lose badly to Blue Origin the moment that BO officially takes some paying passengers up on New Shepard. Of course no one knows when that will happen either. So I'm not surprised VG is looking hard for something else to pay the bills other than tourists.
 
  • Like
Reactions: bxr140

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
2,679
3,575
Bay Area
Does anyone else look at VG and think the whole thing is half baked? It has flown, what, twice?

'Half-baked' and 'hasn't flown a lot' Logic is not dissimilar for Starship...

Reality is, no, it is not half baked. Its just approaching a different space problem in a different way than SpaceX and, as is the case with basically everyone else [that's not sucking on the gub'ment teat] a different spending profile.

It’s a solid fuel rocket which means it isn’t very controllable once ignited. Do they have any abort safety system at all? I am just dreading reading about a fatal flight one day.

Solid motors are way less complex than liquid, and as such are way less prone to anomalies. Their thrust, while certainly more difficult to control real time, is very tunable and predictable. Their nozzles can be steerable. Their abort system is about as simple as it gets--blow the top of the motor off and chamber pressure essentially goes to ambient.

VG is a bit of an anomaly as their solid is actually a hybrid solid/liquid. I don't really know enough about it to know whether it makes sense with their application or if its a bit of a novelty.
 

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
2,679
3,575
Bay Area
My understanding is that it is with current equipment, just a lot more of the equipment. That design really can't do much more than they've already created.

Interesting, and agree with the assessment. I think the thing goes up more than out on ascent--it stands to reason that going out would give a ballistic arc some decent range, but its hard to imagine the current equipment being continent crossing, let alone ocean crossing, since one would assume the fuel load is more or less maxed out with the up-and-down mission profile already.

I'd bet there's a broken link in the telephone game. Virgin has to have plans for an orbital launch system.
 

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
2,679
3,575
Bay Area
Poor choice of words on my part.

What I meant to say: Virgin Galactic has to have plans for an orbital evolution of WhiteKnight and SpaceShipTwo.
 

Nikxice

Active Member
Oct 31, 2014
1,069
1,796
Hudson, NH
No idea what's lifting SPCE higher. The 52 week low was on 11/25/19, single digits at 6.90. Looking at an after hours SPCE quote today of 29 bucks. That now gives VG a market cap of 5.6 billion. SpaceX (a proven Spacefaring company) had an estimated valuation of 33 billion last year. Elon better watch out, looks like Branson is catching up fast.:p
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,387
19,976
San Diego
No idea what's lifting SPCE higher. The 52 week low was on 11/25/19, single digits at 6.90. Looking at an after hours SPCE quote today of 29 bucks. That now gives VG a market cap of 5.6 billion. SpaceX (a proven Spacefaring company) had an estimated valuation of 33 billion last year. Elon better watch out, looks like Branson is catching up fast.:p

I don’t know if I’d ever short any company, but SPCE is getting there! I suspect it is floating up just due to the broad market being so strong, There are very few bargains out there,
 
  • Like
Reactions: Grendal

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
5,748
7,003
Santa Fe, New Mexico
I don’t know if I’d ever short any company, but SPCE is getting there! I suspect it is floating up just due to the broad market being so strong, There are very few bargains out there,

Yep. Where is the money to be made? SpaceX charges on average about $80 million a launch. VG is going to be something like $250,000 per person or $1.5 million per flight. So it will take thousands of flights to get anywhere close to their valuation. The plane has successfully flown just a few times with a full launch regimen. So not seeing it. It also has direct competition from the New Shepard, which I would take long before I flew on the "spaceplane" glider.

Shorting is a matter of timing though. I'm not sure when SPCE is going to crash in a stock market sense. It is still in the speculative expenditure phase.
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,387
19,976
San Diego
Yep. Where is the money to be made? SpaceX charges on average about $80 million a launch. VG is going to be something like $250,000 per person or $1.5 million per flight. So it will take thousands of flights to get anywhere close to their valuation. The plane has successfully flown just a few times with a full launch regimen. So not seeing it. It also has direct competition from the New Shepard, which I would take long before I flew on the "spaceplane" glider.

Shorting is a matter of timing though. I'm not sure when SPCE is going to crash in a stock market sense. It is still in the speculative expenditure phase.

You know the company that has the best track record for returning stuff from space? SpaceX. Over 50 orbital class boosters. When VG or New Shepard get to around that level of demo flights, then I might trust them. I don’t know if that’s a completely fair comparison, but it just seems that neither VG nor Blue Origin has had nearly enough demo flights, and I’m not seeing either announcing they’ll reach say, 10 more demo flights this year.
 

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top