SAVE CONSTELLATION

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jakethesnake

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This is a great video I found on YouTube and it sure convinced me! Check it out!

Over the coming weeks we will see how much support from across both isles of Congress there is for the Constellation Program. I truly hope that both parties can unite to stave off Obama’s dismantling of the U.S. Manned Space Program!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a2IQVZmHnJQ[/youtube]

What are the political issues?
What is Constellation?
What has been built so far?
Has any rocket engine testing been done?
Has an actual rocket been built, tested or launched?
Who did all this work?
Whats at stake?
What can be done to help?
 
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mr_mark

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

It's over, NASA is moving on. Constellation was a failure from the start when the previous administration miscalcualted the budget and timeline. NASA says that Constellation cannot be built out until 2030 at the earliest. It's a failure of a program and a weight around NASA's neck. In the case of LEO, it will be handed over to private concerns under NASA's guidance. NASA is not a jobs program, it needs to move into the next century streamlined and less a victim of politics.
 
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jakethesnake

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

mr_mark":26c79tnq said:
It's over, NASA is moving on. Constellation was a failure from the start when the previous administration miscalcualted the budget and timeline. NASA says that Constellation cannot be built out until 2030 at the earliest. It's a failure of a program and a weight around NASA's neck. In the case of LEO, it will be handed over to private concerns under NASA's guidance. NASA is not a jobs program, it needs to move into the next century streamlined and less a victim of politics.
The president presented his 2011 Budget Proposal, and the key word here is “Proposal” and that budget will not be enacted until at least October of 2010 and most likely much later, which has been the trend over the last few years.

The Constellation Program will continue until at least that time, so again NASA will not “Move On” until Congress and the President come to an agreement.

Maybe you should read the opening statement and watch what the Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics Discusses today on Technology Development at NASA?

Window Media Link:

http://science.edgeboss.net/wmedia/scie ... 020310.wvx

Subcommittee on Space & Aeronautics :: February 3, 2010

Key Issues and Challenges Facing NASA: Views of the Agency’s Watchdogs

Opening Statement By Chairwoman Gabrielle Giffords

Good morning, and welcome to the Subcommittee’s first hearing of the 2nd session. We had a very active Subcommittee last session, and I expect to be at least as busy this year as we carry out our oversight responsibilities. In that regard, I have called this morning’s hearing so that we may have a chance to hear early on from NASA’s “watchdogs”—the NASA Inspector General, the Government Accountability Office, and the independent Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel.

As Congress prepares to reauthorize NASA, it is important that we focus on the issues and challenges that will determine whether or not NASA succeeds or fails in the coming decade. The three individuals testifying before us today can provide us with the kind of expert, objective assessments that we will need to inform our deliberations over NASA’s future, and I look forward to their testimony.

As you know, the president’s Fiscal Year 2011 budget request was delivered to the Hill on Monday. It proposes large changes to NASA programs, including the outright cancellation of Constellation. Today’s hearing is not intended to be an examination of that request, in part because many of the details are still unavailable. However, I can assure you that the full Science and Technology Committee and this Subcommittee will be holding a series of hearings over the coming weeks to examine the president’s proposals, and we intend to give them serious scrutiny. One of the reasons I was particularly honored to accept the chairmanship of this subcommittee was my excitement to be involved in an agency that has inspired Americans, and the world at large, for decades.

But as I reviewed the President’s budget request, I found a quite glaring omission. I would once again point all of you in this chamber to the proverb written on the wall behind me. “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” These words are as true today as when our forefathers undertook a voyage of discovery, when they landed on this continent and founded America as a city upon a hill, a beacon of light for the whole world to admire. We are still that city upon a hill and the eyes of all people are upon us.

We have set forth on a mission to explore the heavens and should we deal falsely with this work we have undertaken, we shall be made a byword across the world. We shall shame the faces of many of America's worthy civil servants who have dedicated their lives to this mission. Today we are still that city upon a hill, but I fear that we may soon abandon our vision. Our job as servants of the people, as members of this committee is to allow our scientists, our engineers and researchers, our visionaries to be as bold in this undertaking as their faculties allow. To be unconstrained by artificial impositions of expedience or purse, but rather limited only by the strength of their imagination and the immutability of the laws of physics. My concern today is not numbers on a ledger, but rather the fate of the American dream to reach for the stars. Should we falter, should we slip, should we let our dream fade, what will we tell our children? How will we inspire the next generation of great minds to pursue the science and engineering fields critical to our competitiveness in the 21st century when we abandon a generation of thousands of aerospace engineers in the middle of this endeavor? What will we tell the world that we led into space, that we took to the moon? My fear is that we will tell them, “Tell us what the stars are like, when you get there.”

In the coming weeks we will be holding a number of hearings both in this subcommittee and the full committee to address the range of NASA programs and responsibilities in science, aeronautics, and human spaceflight. We will discuss the potential impact of program changes on tens of thousands of jobs, precisely the type of high tech jobs that are critical to our economic competitiveness. We will discuss the impact that NASA programs, especially those in human space exploration, play in inspiring young people to pursue careers in STEM fields, another issue vital to developing a workforce for the 21st century. Both of these issues will be especially timely as the full committee considers reauthorization of America COMPETES legislation.

And I, in my work on the House Armed Services Committee, will be diving into the impact that proposed cuts to human spaceflight will have on our aerospace industry and our national defense.

No doubt we will have a great deal to assess in the coming weeks. The testimony we hear today will likely raise additional issues that we will need to consider.

In closing, I would like to tell a story that illustrates my concern. Nearly 100 years before Columbus sailed to the Americas, China had a great fleet of ships traveling throughout the Indian Ocean. This fleet was ahead of its time, exploring the seas and spurring an unprecedented era of knowledge, trade, and discovery. However, as times changed, China felt that it could no longer afford its fleet, and so it was defunded. The fleet soon fell to ruin, with some historians reporting that the ships were burned and destroyed, and so ended a great opportunity for the Chinese people. Had the Chinese continued to fund this endeavor of exploration, of discovery, the world might now be a very different place. How ironic then that today we consider abandoning our space worthy vessels, ending a half century of American leadership in space exploration just as the Chinese ramp up their own space program and aim for the moon.

NASA is an agency with a range of programs and responsibilities in science, aeronautics, and human spaceflight—and we need to make sure that the agency is proceeding as effectively as possible to carry out its diverse missions. Today’s hearing will help us to assess how NASA is doing in that regard. I look forward to working with Members on both sides of the aisle as we strive to ensure that Congress crafts the most responsible and productive future for the nation’s space and aeronautics programs. The stakes for America are too high for us to attempt anything less.
 
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mr_mark

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

For all practical purposes the change over has already started. NASA has ordered all Constellation documents to be shelved and KSC (Kennedy Spaceflight Center) will start the change over to a private and public facility at pad 39 after the shuttles retire. Most departments at NASA while still getting paid will do little work on a program that has deemed to be shelved.
 
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menellom

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

Say, hypothetically, Obama's proposal is completely blocked and Constellation continues on exactly as it has been...

1. The shuttle will still retire at the end of the year.
2. NASA will still have to rent seats on the Soyuz.
3. Ares I still won't be flying until 2016, 2017, maybe even 2018
4. Ares V still won't even start development until 2020.
5. NASA still won't be capable of landing on the Moon by 2020.

Explain to me why you think this is the right decision?
 
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BrianBoru

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

menellom":3uq8kuea said:
Say, hypothetically, Obama's proposal is completely blocked and Constellation continues on exactly as it has been...

1. The shuttle will still retire at the end of the year.
2. NASA will still have to rent seats on the Soyuz.
3. Ares I still won't be flying until 2016, 2017, maybe even 2018
4. Ares V still won't even start development until 2020.
5. NASA still won't be capable of landing on the Moon by 2020.

Explain to me why you think this is the right decision?
Because no other entity has guaranteed they can get the job done, faster, safer, cheaper?
 
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jakethesnake

Guest
Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

menellom":2lrxcs9i said:
Say, hypothetically, Obama's proposal is completely blocked and Constellation continues on exactly as it has been...

1. The shuttle will still retire at the end of the year.
2. NASA will still have to rent seats on the Soyuz.
3. Ares I still won't be flying until 2016, 2017, maybe even 2018
4. Ares V still won't even start development until 2020.
5. NASA still won't be capable of landing on the Moon by 2020.

Explain to me why you think this is the right decision?
1. The shuttle will still retire at the end of the year.

The Shuttle will retire at the end of its flight manifest or after the fifth and last flight.

2. NASA will still have to rent seats on the Soyuz.

Absolutely, NASA will most definitely have to rent a ride on Soyuz due to under funding by both the Bush administration and the Obama administration… shame on them!

3. Ares I still won't be flying until 2016, 2017, maybe even 2018.

I think those dates are as good a guess as any out there even with a drastic funding increase.

4. Ares V still won't even start development until 2020.

I think that depends how the funding is allocated. The retirement of the Space Shuttle will add recourses to NASA as well as the fact that it would not be as hard to rate as it would not have to be human rated.

5. NASA still won't be capable of landing on the Moon by 2020.

I agree, I think landing on the Moon before 2020 no matter what launch vehicle is a pipe dream.

Even if the commercial option is used as Obama wants, with new safety constraints that by the way haven’t even been developed and or written yet, it will still be well after 2020 before anyone lands on the Moon. Anyone who says different in my mine is not being realistic.

And to better answer your question you should watch the video I provided above... its an eye opener!
 
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menellom

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

jakethesnake":3cjttbbw said:
And to better answer your question you should watch the video I provided above... its an eye opener!
I'm not asking what the video's opinion is. I'm asking you. Why do you think blocking the current proposal and sticking with Constellation is the right choice? I'm not looking for a speech, just a simple point by point to understand your argument.

'I think sticking with Constellation, and not Obama's proposal, is the right choice because __, __, __, and __.

Right now all you're doing is saying 'save Constellation', you're not presenting an argument as to 'why'. That's what I'm looking for from you.

And no, "watch the video, it explains everything" is not an argument.
 
J

jakethesnake

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

EarthlingX":1eikkj3o said:
jakethesnake":1eikkj3o said:
And to better answer your question you should watch the video I provided above... its an eye opener!
That video is everything but an eye opener.
This might be:
Why the Ares 1-X test ISN'T a true success
Why the Ares-1 is already DEAD

You can also find more facts, if you are after facts, in the forum.
In the process of doing just that…

Also, all other Launch vehicles compared to Ares 1 are nothing but Power Point Presentation or Paper Dreams!
 
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EarthlingX

Guest
Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

jakethesnake":3e63vgsw said:
EarthlingX":3e63vgsw said:
jakethesnake":3e63vgsw said:
And to better answer your question you should watch the video I provided above... its an eye opener!
That video is everything but an eye opener.
This might be:
Why the Ares 1-X test ISN'T a true success
Why the Ares-1 is already DEAD

You can also find more facts, if you are after facts, in the forum.
In the process of doing just that…

Also, all other Launch vehicles compared to Ares 1 are nothing but Power Point Presentation or Paper Dreams!
Ares might have been a Power Point Presentation, but there wast no Paper Dream. Technical plans for Ares I are not done.
 
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Gravity_Ray

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

First of all I want to say I really like this Jakethesnake a lot more than the last one. I’m not kidding around, what happened? You went from fairly arrogant and flippant to; does his homework and responds without getting all emotional and angry.

Back to the OP

The first time I heard about the VSE (that famous speech by President Bush) I was so happy that we were going to move out of LEO. Man I was all smiles… Then as I read more and more I realized there was a major problem. Constellation was not just underfunded; it was NOT funded. Everything I read on line had the smart people scratching their heads trying to figure out how exactly NASA was supposed to pay for it.
Let’s break Constellation program down A) Ares I, B) Ares V, C) Orion, and D) Altair.

I never had a problem with Ares I technically (although I don’t like solid fuel rockets), the problem was political. Ares I proposes to take the Orion to LEO. Here is my big issue; Why? Wouldn’t it be so much better for NASA to say we want to get a capsule to LEO orbit and ISS and let some private companies do it for them? Isn’t the whole point of going to space, moving humanity to space? If so, why not foster private companies with seed money to do this and then these companies will take civilians out there, and soon many people are going out there. So the question is why should NASA stifle humanity moving out to space? IF NASA makes Ares I only astronauts are going to space. If NASA helps SpaceX make the Falcon then astronauts and civilians are going to space.

At first I was a huge fan of Ares V. This comes from my old age and seeing the Space Shuttle designed. I am scared of cobbling together some Frankenstein beast to go past LEO. If you dig around you will find some of my posts where I defended the Ares V. But a few smarter people than me on these boards pointed me to some good information on line that shows the folly here. Why build a new space rocket when you can man rate a Delta IV Heavy, or even an Atlas V? These rockets are proven rockets that are almost at the point that they can get man rated and have truly good safety records. What’s with re-inventing the wheel here? Again I think Ares V is technically possible, but why spend a lot of money and start the rocket design in 10 years when you can have another rocket do the same thing in half the time?

Orion is a good idea. The simple fact of the matter is that as sexy as a winged space plan looks its useless for going to the Moon, Mars and beyond. For that you need a capsule. They are not sexy, but man they work just as advertised. Orion can be a good ship for Moon, Mars and beyond, but its total over kill for getting a few people to LEO. So now here is SpaceX with their Dragon capsule that they are building with their own money. Yes, true, they are not there yet. But again, why shouldn’t NASA help them with seed money to make this capsule and get them to Space. That way they can go on and get the rest of us to space after they cut their teeth on delivering freight and people to the ISS.

Finally the Altair, this is also a needed technology, but let’s faces it. We are at least 15 to 20 (and maybe more) years away from getting to land on the Moon, so what is the point of NASA spending a lot of money designing this, when they can use that money to make access to LEO easier by seeding private companies. For now whatever they learned about the Altair is still valid, just shelf it for now until you actually get to the point of going to the Moon.

So I can’t just accept your statement “lets save Constellation”. The ONLY reason to save all of constellation is if you think of it as a jobs program for a few states. But that’s not in the mission statement of NASA. NASA is a federal agency trying to do what is best for all of us. Not just a few thousand employees that will be upset if they lose their jobs.
 
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mr_mark

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

The biggest reason to cancel Constellation has to be logic and launchers. As far as LEO there is at least 3 launchers ready or near ready to go right now, three of which are the Atlas and Delta ( just needing to be manrated) and Falcon 9 which will be launching on it's maiden flight next month and will have roll out at the pad in 2 weeks. As far as beyond LEO, I know that Falcon 9 heavy will be ready by about 2017 or earlier and others in the space community I'm sure can tell about a slew of other heavy launchers from other companies. NASA building launchers makes no sense and will cost taxpayers billions of dollars in unneeded expenditures.
 
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jakethesnake

Guest
Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

mr_mark":1obgwxdy said:
The biggest reason to cancel Constellation has to be logic and launchers. As far as LEO there is at least 3 launchers ready or near ready to go right now, three of which are the Atlas and Delta ( just needing to be manrated) and Falcon 9 which will be launching on it's maiden flight next month and will have roll out at the pad in 2 weeks. As far as beyond LEO, I know that Falcon 9 heavy will be ready by about 2017 or earlier and others in the space community I'm sure can tell about a slew of other heavy launchers from other companies. NASA building launchers makes no sense and will cost taxpayers billions of dollars in unneeded expenditures.
It would take a monumental effort to human rate the Atlas, Delta and/or the Falcon 9, which would include adding redundant systems as well as designing a manned vehicle and some sort of escape system.

Also they would have to adhere to the same safety requirement that NASA does, which is extremely stringent to say the least!

Look… I don’t have a problem in the world with SpaceX or Orbital… I am definitely a fan and I am most certainly rooting for them, but in my book they have a very long way to go before I would put stock in them… let alone the fate of the U.S. manned space program.

We already have the Orion Capsule which is almost complete, and if it proves out that the Ares 1 is not doable then move on to something else, but for the love of God don’t SCRAP the Constellation Program!
Personally I think the Ares 1 and the SRB design is a very simple design with an order of magnitude less moving parts... and SIMPLE is always safer and better!
 
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menellom

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

Cmon Jake, a simple point by point is all I'm asking for.

"DON'T CANCEL CONSTELLATION" is not an argument for saving the program.
 
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bushwhacker

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

All i can say is the day Elon Musk puts the life support system in dragon i'm signing up for a ride..

I dont belive any of these so called escape systems are gonna get you away from an exploding rocket.
 
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bdewoody

Guest
Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

I honestly don't think going back to a capsule that plops down on the ocean under parachutes is moving forward but to cancel NASA human space flight is absurd. Arguing on one hand that jobs need to be saved /created and then cancelling a major space program is two faced. Once again I point out that not one penny of the NASA budget gets shot into space, well OK the hardware is worth a lot of money. But the NASA budget goes to pay PEOPLE to do jobs, people in every state. And then there is the matter of National Pride, OK we have to accept that other nations are becoming capable of human space flight, but does that mean the USA should step aside and let others take the lead?

Soon maybe private ventures such as Burt Rutan's and Robert Bigelow's will go where NASA fears to tread but until then I believe NASA still needs to plan and execute manned space flight missions.
 
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nimbus

Guest
Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

bdewoody":2ngzotk5 said:
OK we have to accept that other nations are becoming capable of human space flight, but does that mean the USA should step aside and let others take the lead?
Why, then, has NASA gotten only 1/2 % of the budget? Sooner or later this tiny margin would be insufficient to absorb bumps in the road. As today.
but until then I believe NASA still needs to plan and execute manned space flight missions.
Griffin's pork-tacular Constellation jinxed that one for ya.
 
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jakethesnake

Guest
Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

menellom"]Cmon Jake, a simple point by point is all I'm asking for.

"DON'T CANCEL CONSTELLATION" is not an argument for saving the program.
I will address your question and/or comment in this way…

1. All of the architecture that is the Constellation Program is sound and more than just doable. The Augustine Commission even said as much... “it should be emphasized that the Committee did not find any insurmountable technical issues with Ares 1.”

The Augustine Final Report can be found here:

http://www.nasa.gov/pdf/396093main_HSF_ ... Report.pdf

From the Augustine Final Report (Page 90)

The choice of Ares I as the crew launcher was probably a sound choice in 2005. As is often observed, the rocket equation has not changed, so any reason that NASA would come to a different solution for crew transport to low-Earth orbit today than in 2005 would be due to changes in assumptions and constraints. The Committee in fact concludes that many of the assumptions on which the Ares I crew decision was based have changed. In contrast, the Committee found that the Orion should continue to be developed as a capable crew exploration vehicle, regardless of the decision on Ares I. Likewise, it should be emphasized that the Committee did not find any insurmountable technical issues with Ares I. With time and sufficient funds, NASA could develop, build and fly the Ares I successfully. The question is, should it?
2. And the ASAP’s Report “To abandon Ares I as a baseline vehicle for an alternative without demonstrated capability nor proven superiority (or even equivalence) is unwise and probably not cost-effective.
"
ASAP’s 2009 Report can be found here:

http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/oer/asap/index.html

From the 2009 ASAP Report:

II. Critical Issues (Page 11)

Safety:

Among the many assumptions and recommendations made by this committee, one of the most profound was that appropriate consideration be given to using the commercial space industry to fulfill NASA crew-delivery services to LEO. In making this recommendation, the committee also noted that while human safety never can be absolutely assured, safety was assumed to be “a given.” The Panel believes that this assumption is premature and oversimplifies a complex and challenging problem because there is not a “cookie-cutter approach” to safety in space.
Human Space Flight

(1) Human Rating Requirements (HRR) for Follow-On Vehicles (Page 13)

To abandon Ares I as a baseline vehicle for an alternative without demonstrated capability nor
proven superiority (or even equivalence) is unwise and probably not cost-effective.
The ability
of any current COTS design to “close the gap” or even provide an equivalent degree of safety is
speculative. Switching from a demonstrated (design approach proven by Apollo, use of heritage
hardware, and Ares 1-X flight success), well designed, safety optimized (ESAS) system to one based on nothing more than unsubstantiated claims would seem a poor choice. Before any change is made to another architecture, the inherent safety of that approach must be assessed to ensure that it offers a level of safety equal to or greater than the program of record.
It should be also noted that Time Magazine Ranked the Ares 1 First out 50 new inventions in 2009.

As far as funding watch this video and listen to what Senator Bennett had to say about how easy it would be to fund the Constellation Program! Just what Obama gave Acorn last year out of the stimulus package could fund all of the Constellation Program and then some!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tbRjRuGJ ... r_embedded
 
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