SAVE CONSTELLATION

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mj1

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

[/quote]

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![/quote]
Ares might have been a Power Point Presentation, but there wast no Paper Dream. Technical plans for Ares I are not done.[/quote]
In addition, as I type this, there is a SapceX Falcon 9 SITTING ON THE LAUNCHPAD. That rocket is every bit of what the Ares I was supposed to be and is not a fake ass 1x pipe dream, but the actual rocket that will be used to resupply the ISS and eventually ferry astronauts there.
 
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edkyle99

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

mj1":2x43p78a said:
In addition, as I type this, there is a SapceX Falcon 9 SITTING ON THE LAUNCHPAD. That rocket is every bit of what the Ares I was supposed to be and is not a fake ass 1x pipe dream, but the actual rocket that will be used to resupply the ISS and eventually ferry astronauts there.
That Falcon 9 is designed to lift an 8-ish tonne payload to an ISS orbit. Ares I was going to boost 20 tonnes to the same orbit, with a heavy launch escape system along for part of the ride. In addition, the Falcon 9 currently sitting on SLC 40 is only a "Block 1" version that is not able to lift as much as the final operational version.

Falcon 9, if it works, will be an accomplishment, but it will certainly not be "every bit of what Ares I was supposed to be".

- Ed Kyle
 
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menellom

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Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

edkyle99":1vbemu5z said:
That Falcon 9 is designed to lift an 8-ish tonne payload to an ISS orbit. Ares I was going to boost 20 tonnes to the same orbit, with a heavy launch escape system along for part of the ride. In addition, the Falcon 9 currently sitting on SLC 40 is only a "Block 1" version that is not able to lift as much as the final operational version.

Falcon 9, if it works, will be an accomplishment, but it will certainly not be "every bit of what Ares I was supposed to be".

- Ed Kyle
The Falcon 9 will actually be capable of lifting about 10 tonnes to LEO, the Falcon 9 Heavy (which is just a Falcon 9 with two first stages acting as LRBs) will lift about 25-30 tonnes to LEO
 
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holmec

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So many posts...and good read.

Good vid first of all. Most peeps have good points.

IMHO the glaring problem of why Constellation is being cancelled is Congress. Bush pushed this through without money so he didn't have to deal with Congress. In fact there's a lot of programs he did not fund, like No Child Left Behind. But trouble with Congress is nothing new to NASA. In the late 90s and early 2000's Congress ripped NASA a new one over the OSP saying it was too costly.

So a real debate with Congress and the Administration is needed to heal old wounds. And perhaps they will fund a NASA space program.

Personally I think that having a manned space craft like Orion that can go beyond LEO is necessary and would keep the US in the "lead" in space. Plus it would be Earth's only space craft of that capability. NEO's are a concern world wide and that could be a set of first missions beyond LEO.

"Going commercial" in this present stage is new for NASA because they will not be in every little detail and the gov't wouldn't pay 100% of the development costs. But it gives a lot of leeway to ingenuity which was not there before. If ULA has its way and uses the DreamChaser, that is another space plane (or lifting body).

I notice that the Air Force is continuing its efforts to have its new orbital space plane, albeit unmanned (so they say).

So saving Constellation is a nice thought but there is little will to do it in Congress. And we are presently reaping the fruits of old political disputes. We cannot continue in this viscous circle.
 
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nimbus

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A quote heavy post and from another website, but it's a perfect illustration of how handicapped the space program is, thanks to politics.
NSF conversation":1eyexfkh said:
Analyst":1eyexfkh said:
As always Congressmembers will do a show in these hearings, Bolden gets the flak, he says "yes sir" a couple of times, and moves on.

Analyst
clb22":1eyexfkh said:
He will also counter with facts. Some members will talk about Cx and how great it was and Bolden will say an independent panel has reviewed the situation and it really wasn't great at all. The only thing Congressmembers can say to that is "Gnfrdts! I didn't hear that and now I will repeat my point that I want more jobs in my district and state!"
Ben the Space Brit":1eyexfkh said:
Wrong, they may instead choose to blame NASA for their embarrassment: "Mr. Bolden, if NASA is now accepting the Augustine Commission's conclusions, why did it pursue such an expensive and flawed strategy in the first place? Are you, in fact, accusing your own agency of incompetence?" It is more-or-less how a different Congress treated von Braun after the USG ignored orbital capability for years and then got embarrassed by Sputnik 1.

In other words: "You lied to us, we believed you and now you're gonna pay."
clb22":1eyexfkh said:
This is cheap rhetoric that immediately backfires. Bolden can say a. he wasn't administrator when Cx went down the gutter, b. that Congress provided the funding for the program full well knowing that the program was not on schedule and over budget and c. that there was an original plan back in 2004 that looked different than the 2005 plan and that NASA is going back to the 2004 technology and robotics plan and just leaves out the 2020 date for lunar landings because as of right now that won't work any more. Bolden will also say that Cx was executable and still is, but only at a much higher budget and that he thinks because that budget isn't forthcoming, Cx has to be scraped - also in light of federal deficit reduction.

Congressmembers will look pretty stupid attacking Bolden in a way you describe.
William Barton":1eyexfkh said:
You need to watch the news more if you think *anyone* in American politics thinks that kind of thing makes them look "pretty stupid,* or cares if they do. Do you see Republicans saying, "Oh, well we better not attack Obama for wrecking the economy, seeing as it happened on our guy's watch?" No. It doesn't matter that people here can point the finger at Griffin. Bolden is in the hotseat now, and all Congressmen care about is counting coup. The facts are all but irrelevant.
The only saving going on is politicians saving their bacon.
 
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trailrider

Guest
Constellation is DEAD, DEAD, DEAD! ;) If you don't believe me, just go look at "Spaceflight Now". www.spaceflightnow.com/news/n1002/22technology/ and spaceflightnow.com/news/n1002/22commercial/ (It's way too long to post here, and I might be violating copyright laws.) The devil in the "cancellation of Constellation" is in the details. And from these two articles, we may be seeing a classic case of political slight-of-hand. Unfortunately, probably by calculation, the Obama Administration has set no specific objectives, such as the Moon or Mars. But what is in the details of the budget proposal is proposals for development of "a new hydrocarbon first stage engine for a heavy-lift rocket by 2020." To quote NASA's budget document released Monday, "A strong candidate would be a hydrocarbon (liquid oxygen/kerosene) engine, capable of generating high levels of thrust approximately equal to or exceeding performance of the Russian-built RD-180 engine." (italics mine) ;) (Now what would be wrong with the RD-180, if that's the case? After all, the licensing agreement supposedly specified that a certain percentage of the ones used on Atlas V were to be built by Pratt & Whitney-Rocketdyne (PWR). I don't know if any have been built in Florida, but supposedly PWR has the tooling...or should by now!)

In the second article, "NASA releases new details of commercial crew program," "NASA will attempt to stimulate a portfolio of private transportation providers in its commercial crew program, striking a balance between emerging and established space companies, according to new agency plans released Monday." (Italics again mine.) If that double-talk doesn't open the door for the "big boys", Lockheed-Martin, United Launch Alliance, Boeing, et al, I've got a couple of vacant craters to sell you on the backside of the Moon! :cool: Just imaging the proposal Lock-Mart could come up with: "Well, Gen. Bolden, we've got some hardware lying around loose that, with proper modifications (say, adding a couple of extra seats), and a heavy-lift booster, could take six astronauts to the ISS, instead of only four that would have been flown with (you should excuse the expression...) the cancelled program's hardware. Whaddya mean, that sounds like the original Orion? You cancelled Orion! ;) Oh, those other new kids on the block? Well, let them do whatever, we've got hardware in the Space Support Building at Waterton Canyon!

Of course, this is ONLY a PROPOSAL! Now Congress has to step up to the plate! And they haven't in the past! Not since...well, take your pick, but it's been several decades at least! :(

So, we'll just have to see what happens! Hopefully, Congress will step up to the plate and let the U.S. head out, "Thataway!"

Ad Luna! Ad Ares! Ad Astra!
 
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edkyle99

Guest
Re: SAVE CONTSTELLATION

menellom":3taf75gz said:
edkyle99":3taf75gz said:
That Falcon 9 is designed to lift an 8-ish tonne payload to an ISS orbit. Ares I was going to boost 20 tonnes to the same orbit, with a heavy launch escape system along for part of the ride. In addition, the Falcon 9 currently sitting on SLC 40 is only a "Block 1" version that is not able to lift as much as the final operational version.

Falcon 9, if it works, will be an accomplishment, but it will certainly not be "every bit of what Ares I was supposed to be".

- Ed Kyle
The Falcon 9 will actually be capable of lifting about 10 tonnes to LEO, the Falcon 9 Heavy (which is just a Falcon 9 with two first stages acting as LRBs) will lift about 25-30 tonnes to LEO
Falcon 9 Block 2 is expected to lift 10-ish tonnes. The rocket on Pad 40 is a Block 1 version with lower-thrust Merlins than Block 2, which means less propellant and less payload.

A Falcon 9 Heavy won't be "just" three Falcon 9 stages strapped together. SpaceX will have to develop the complete design the same way it did for the straight Falcon 9. That means structural modeling and certification testing, etc. A bigger upper stage might be needed for Heavy. Launch site improvements would be needed (the erector in use obviously can't lift a Heavy, for example.) Not trivial and not cheap! Someone will have to pay for it - and Mr. Musk doesn't have deep enough pockets himself. NASA just canceled a 20 tonne spacecraft project, so what payload could fly on a Heavy?

- Ed Kyle
 
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rowesphotography

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!!!!!!!! Save the constellation program !!!!!!!!!!

Hello everyone I was just thinking about starting a petition to save the constellation program. Judging by some of the posts there are many of you who are not sorry to see constellation go. I to had my reservations about constellation when they first announced it but with all those uncertainties I came to realize that this was the first time NASA has charted a course out side low earth orbit. I think with all the bad constellation has there is a lot of good that could come out of it. I fear that the cancelation of this program will leave us stuck in low earth orbit for a very long time. I want to know what you think. Would you support a petition to save Constellation? Let me know what you think. Thank you all
 
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nimbus

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Re: !!!!!!!! Save the constellation program !!!!!!!!!!

Why save the Constellation program when you can lobby for a more comprehensive solution? The better objective is finding or at least promoting some better alternative to the net failure that Constellation was.
 
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Swampcat

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Would you support a petition to save Constellation?
Absolutely not.

As much as I'd like to see human expansion beyond Earth, I've never been a fan of destination-based programs. Historically, these kinds of programs have consumed the bulk of NASA's resources to the detriment of research and development in other areas. That approach has given us 30 years of SST to LEO and ISS while project after project was canceled. Constellation was so expensive it was starting to suck money away from robotic science projects and would have required annual increases in NASA's budget.

If you want a destination-based program, I'm with nimbus. There are better ways to go about it.
 
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steve82

Guest
trailrider":mayfccik said:
Just imaging the proposal Lock-Mart could come up with: "Well, Gen. Bolden, we've got some hardware lying around loose that, with proper modifications (say, adding a couple of extra seats), and a heavy-lift booster, could take six astronauts to the ISS, instead of only four that would have been flown with (you should excuse the expression...) the cancelled program's hardware. Whaddya mean, that sounds like the original Orion? You cancelled Orion! ;) Oh, those other new kids on the block? Well, let them do whatever, we've got hardware in the Space Support Building at Waterton Canyon!

Of course, this is ONLY a PROPOSAL! Now Congress has to step up to the plate! And they haven't in the past! Not since...well, take your pick, but it's been several decades at least! :(

So, we'll just have to see what happens! Hopefully, Congress will step up to the plate and let the U.S. head out, "Thataway!"

Ad Luna! Ad Ares! Ad Astra!

FWIW, the baseline Orion is fully capable of carrying 6 crewmembers. The more constrained lunar version is being made for 4 and, since the first several missions Orion is manifested to fly to ISS only include 2 or a maximum of 4 crew, it was decided to only maintain the 4-crew baseline for the time being, at least through CDR.
 
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Piratejoe

Guest
Here's a Link to a Wall Street Journal article, It appears Nasa is backing down on Obama's plans and are going to reshuffle the Constellation Program much like how the space station freedom was.
Link http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142 ... TopStories

Very Intresting, Im not celebrating just yet but I am smiling today.
This comment is worth a chuckle: Mr. Coats wrote about quickly assembling a study team and told colleagues: "You can name it anything you want—I don't recommend Constellation or Orion."

Edit: Memo added 3/4/10 2:54 Mountain time to this post


From: Coats, Michael (JSC-Center-Director)(JSC-AA111)

To: Altemus, Stephen J. (JSC-EA111)

Cc: Lightfoot, Robert M. (MSFC-DA01); Cabana, Robert D. (KSC-Center-Director)(KSC-AA000); Mango, Edward J. (KSC-FA000); Geyer, Mark S. (JSC-ZV111); Hanley, Jeffrey M. (JSC-ZA111); Ochoa, Ellen (JSC-AB111)

Sent: Tue Mar 02 12:34:12 2010

Subject: Plan B team

Steve Robert and I talked to Charlie and he agreed to let us set up a “Plan B” team (my term, since Chairman Gordon asked Charlie about his “plan B” at the hearing) to look at what a potential compromise might look like. Charlie is meeting with Chairman Gordon in a couple days and asked for a one pager with talking points before his meeting. Please contact Gary Lyles, Ed Mango, and Mark Geyer to develop that one pager quickly, and set up a team (you can name it anything you want—I don’t recommend Constellation or Orion). Robert and I mentioned the importance of three areas: a human spacecraft development effort; a heavy lift launch vehicle development effort; a launch vehicle test program. Your white paper is a good basis, but please work with Gary, Ed and Mark. Our desire is to establish a team to flesh this out, then report to Charlie through Doug Cooke. Living within the budget is a huge issue, since it’s doubtful we’ll get more funding. Mike
 
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voyager4d

Guest
Piratejoe":19ftfrjg said:
Very Intresting, Im not celebrating just yet but I am smiling today.
This comment is worth a chuckle: Mr. Coats wrote about quickly assembling a study team and told colleagues: "You can name it anything you want—I don't recommend Constellation or Orion."
I likede the new direction NASA was going, so I'm sad they will have to make compromises.
Hope they will not have to build Ares 1 an d 5, they are just to expensive, nothing good will come out of them.
A compromise I could live with, is to build the Orion capsule, but launch it on a Atlas 5 heavy.
The Atlas 5 need to me human rated anyway to be used for Orion Lite and Dream Chaser.
An other compromise I could live with, was to keep flying the space shuttle ontil 2012 or 2013, if NASA got extra money for this (about $1 billion pr year).
 
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menellom

Guest
Plan B: Congress either gives NASA the funding to do both options (research and private alternatives plus building their own craft) or they keep their noses out of issues they're completely uninformed about and we go back to plan A.

I will be really upset if the new plan goes down in favor of turning NASA into a jobs program through Constellation.
 
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vulture4

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There is nothing in development that can match the ability of the Space Shuttle to deliver 12 tons of equipment, the mechanical arm and the people to assemble it. We should keep the Shuttle flying until we have something comparable to replace it. We should let SpaceX develop human spaceflight capability promptly but not in a crash program. There is no point in continuing with the Orion capsule since it isn't designed for orbital logistics and we cannot afford lunar flight with expendables. The Dragon is designed for LEO and is much lighter than Orion with a large cargo capacity.

And we should restart the Reusable Launch Vehicle program, at a deliberate pace and using subscale unmanned suborbital technology demonstrators. We do not need a heavy lift launcher, and if we did we could order one from ULA, as no new technology is involved. We would do much beter letting a contractor design and test the vehicle rather than going through the interminable and expensive NASA design review process.
 
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rockett

Guest
vulture4":29d09q4g said:
There is nothing in development that can match the ability of the Space Shuttle to deliver 12 tons of equipment, the mechanical arm and the people to assemble it. We should keep the Shuttle flying until we have something comparable to replace it. We should let SpaceX develop human spaceflight capability promptly but not in a crash program. There is no point in continuing with the Orion capsule since it isn't designed for orbital logistics and we cannot afford lunar flight with expendables. The Dragon is designed for LEO and is much lighter than Orion with a large cargo capacity.
This is exactly what I have been advocating. See this thread:
Should We Fly The Shuttle 2 More Years?
http://www.space.com/common/forums/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=23134

vulture4":29d09q4g said:
And we should restart the Reusable Launch Vehicle program, at a deliberate pace and using subscale unmanned suborbital technology demonstrators. We do not need a heavy lift launcher, and if we did we could order one from ULA, as no new technology is involved. We would do much beter letting a contractor design and test the vehicle rather than going through the interminable and expensive NASA design review process.
I'm afraid that restarting the Reusable Launch Vehicle program probably wouldn't fly with this Administration (pun intended). In addition, we would have to reinvent the technology. There is the unfortunate tendancy for cancelled programs to wind up totally in the trash and the brains all scattered.

The only way this is going to happen is DARPA or the Air Force stepping in, in this political climate (thinking X-34). Maybe they will at least preserve the technology for now.

As for a heavy lifter, why not just license construction of Ariane 5s to ULA? (at least till things get better) They do that with military planes all the time...
 
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