Area scales as the square of dimension, weight scales as the cube. So, smaller engines have higher thrust to weight. Engines on a MEMs scale achieve 1,000 to 1 thrust to weight as a result. This is 10 to 20 times better than macroscopic engines.

MEMs processing costs about $1 per square inch. MEMs rockets produce 50 pounds per square inch. So, we’re talking about $0.02 per pound of thrust.

So, a 3 million pound thrust engine – enough to loft a fully loaded ET off the pad at nearly 2 gees – would cost only $60,000 !! and cover 60,000 sq inches – 416.7 sq ft – a disk 23 ft in diameter – 4.6 ft less than the diameter of the ET itself.

With 1,000 to 1 thrust to weight, the 3 milion pound thrust engine masses only 3,000 pounds. Added to the 58,500 pound tank we have an empty mass of 61,500 pounds and a full-up wieght of 1,683,000 pounds.

Adding a 7,000 pound section to the intertank region for a payload, and a 25,000 pound payload – we have a full up weight of 1,715,000 pounds at lift-off and 108,500 pound empty weight. With an exhaust velocity of 14,650 fps this system has an ideal velocity of;

Vf = 14650 * LN(1715000/108500) = 40,440 fps

Which exceeds escape velocity.

If the ET costs $50 million – this is $2,000 per pound – which is remarkable.

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