So where is all the billions in development going?<br /><br />Also how much do the components cost? E.g external fuel tank, SRBs etc.<br /><br />Does the plan get rid of the idea of developing a shuttle C type lifter?
<i>"Does the plan get rid of the idea of developing a shuttle C type lifter?"</i><br /><br />Yes, they are going with a more capable in-line heavy lift vehicle instead. It's one of the few bright spots of this plan full of compromises.<br /><br />I think the CEV is supposed to cost on the order of $5 billion, and the launch vehicles are supposed to cost a similar amount to develop.
In terms of capability and cost, it will probably be similar. In terms of reliability, I wonder if Saturn V might have the edge. But in any case, the "Shuttle Derived Heavy Lift Vehicle" won't be man rated.
By Apollo 17, the Saturn V could lift 142 tons into low Earth orbit (including the SIVB's departure fuel). The SD Heavy Lift booster could lift 125 metric tons, assuming 5-segment SRBs, Aluminium/Lithium tankage, and SSMEs at 109%percent were used. This is because the SRBs which provide the main thrust are a much lower ISP than the Saturn's LOX/Kerosene F-1 engines. And the vehicle would have a much higher launch mass than the Saturn V anyway.<br /><br />But it's the very best heavy-lift rocket in the world that could be built for now. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p>One Percent of Federal Funding For Space: America <strong><em><u>CAN</u></em></strong> Afford it!! LEO is a <strong><em>Prison</em></strong> -- It's time for a <em><strong>JAILBREAK</strong></em>!!</p> </div>
We are going to need two or three new launchpads. Because the current infrastructure at KSC won't be able to support the new vehicles. I guess there are at least two pads needed for launching the SRB+CEV.<br /><br />And another pad will be needed for the new inline SDHLV, it ain't going to be cheap<br /><br />Although the vehicles might be derived from past and current technology. The infrastructure at KSC will be huge, because of a radical different system
The SRBs would have to be counted as the first stage, as the Saturn's S1C was. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p>One Percent of Federal Funding For Space: America <strong><em><u>CAN</u></em></strong> Afford it!! LEO is a <strong><em>Prison</em></strong> -- It's time for a <em><strong>JAILBREAK</strong></em>!!</p> </div>
<blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr /><p>We are going to need two or three new launchpads. Because the current infrastructure at KSC won't be able to support the new vehicles. I guess there are at least two pads needed for launching the SRB+CEV. <p><hr /></p></p></blockquote><br /><br />This is the first I've heard that LC-39 couldn't support the new vehicles. Why couldn't it? Obviously it would require major modifications, but then, they went through that to make it work for Shuttle, so I don't see why they couldn't mod it again, especially as this vehicle is meant to fly several years after the Shuttle's last flight. From an engineering perspective, I'm curious what makes this new concept not servicable by LC-39. Is it just the fact that they're going to have to be able to launch both the big huge cargo rocket and the CEV's smaller rocket for a single mission? <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p><font color="#666699"><em>"People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly . . . timey wimey . . . stuff."</em> -- The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
Well, I just reckon its going to be really really difficult with the current timeline to use the current infrastructure.<br /><br />First, LC-39 has be operational in 2010/2012 to support the Shuttle flight programme. Even if they cut it short to 2008, you're going to have a problem of different vehicles. In the past it has never been possible to launch two completly different vehicles from the same pad, even if you want it. Just look at the SRB+CEV and SDHLV, they might use the same engines and such, but there is one hell of a difference. So I doubt it can all be launched from one pad.<br /><br />Even if its technically possible, there is going to quite some gap between the last shuttle operations and the commence of the SRB+CEV/SDHLV operations. Say 2010 is the last shuttle missions, might take a year or two for the pad to be rebuild. That would make it 2012, testing of the new hardware, because even though its not completly new, I would first put some dummies in the CEV, for the first few flights. Before all is up and running, it will be quite tight to reach the 2018 date.<br /><br />It would be much smarter to have two seperate pads for the SRB+CEV, so testing of the system can start shortly after the shuttle has stopped operating, resulting in a small gap between the two. And then LC-39 might be able to be upgraded to the SDHLV.<br /><br />
From the briefing Griffin gave, I thought he said that they were going to use pads 39a/b.<br /><br />Getting back to the original point. How come the CEV (assuming the figure is just ffor the capsule) is going to take 5billion to develop? From the architecture study, it just seems like a capsule with the ability to return straight to earth from lunar orbit. Apollo command module then, but bigger, so why all so much money?
The fact that the actual launch pads are mobile makes the continued use of LC 39 possible. The difference in size between the CEV Launcher and the Heavy might make it necessary to go back to the crawler moving service structures about as Apollo did. There were originally three pads planned for, with 39C to the north of the existing pads. I suppose they could dust off those plans eventually. Better to get the launch preparation time down to something more like the Shuttle was originally going to be capable of. I suppose the best was Gemini, where they fired them off in pretty rapid succession.