How to minimize a number of Space Shuttles flights

Page 2 - Seeking answers about space? Join the Space community: the premier source of space exploration, innovation, and astronomy news, chronicling (and celebrating) humanity's ongoing expansion across the final frontier.
Status
Not open for further replies.
A

arezn99

Guest
najaB:<br />“There are two major obstacles to the plan you've outlined: first, the US does not have an automated rendezvous system so the Delta/Atlas launched payload would have no way to get 'as close as possible'.” <br />No need in automated rendezvous system at all in this case! There are a number of busters (upper stages) that deliver payload from LEO to GTO. I think it is quite possible to use some of the busters (probably, with some modification) to deliver an ISS component close to ISS. Such buster can keep orientation of the ISS component when a Space Shuttle grabs this component with its arm. Space Shuttles did so with the Hubble telescope several times. <br /><br />“Secondly, the Shuttle-launched ISS payloads were designed specifically to be Shuttle launched. The Shuttle provides a very different launch environment than the EELVs do. Reconfiguring ISS modules to be launched on expendable boosters would cost almost as much and take almost as long as it did to build them in the first place.”<br /><br />The ISS components are quite different. Maybe among them are several components that can be reconfigured for EELVs and it would be done quicker and cheaper. <br /><br />
 
S

spacester

Guest
<font color="yellow">Another question to ask is whether there were, are, or will be alternative approaches that can achieve similar results for less money. For example, will a Bigelow supplied, man-tended orbital platform be able to achieve similar results at a much lower cost? </font><br /><br />That's what I find so amusing about Bigelow. While he made his fortune on a hotel chain, and he shifted his fortune to creating a machine shop capable of building habitable volumes to be sent to space, he insists he is not building space hotels. He will tell you (last I heard & IIRC) that he is building space science laboratories.<br /><br />So in spite of all the nay-sayers re ISS based microgravity science, he's pretty sure there's an actual profitable market for the activity. Perhaps it's the conditions put on ISS science by Psycho Dan; if I'm doing R & D in space, I need freedom and privacy.<br /><br />So buy your own space laboratory from Bigelow, and generate enough patents to pay for it. The new American Dream. (And people wonder why we want CATS so badly . . . )<br /><br />I think an<i> occasionally </i>man-tended science satellite - pure microgravity between visits - under your own control - at lower cost - accessible via "space tourism" vehicles - in a common orbital plane with others - is a winning proposition. It would prolly even be a popular tourist attraction - two crew, three technicians, 7 tourists, someone build me a 12-person orbital vehicle already!<br /><br />Another question to ask is whether the special and unique abilities of ISS will always provide it with a niche in the space science laboratory business. If not, we need to start talking about moving it towards other uses. Sample return is my favorite - Mars to ISS, glovebox it there and your options are open as far as bringing it to the surface of Earth. ('Course that could be done in a Bigelow unit as well, but sample return is the right job for a gummint program) <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

ASK THE COMMUNITY

Latest posts