Author Topic: UK steps up, as ESA commit to ATV Service Module on NASA's Orion  (Read 196811 times)

Online Chris Bergin

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2012/11/uk-steps-up-esa-commit-atv-service-module-orion/

Based on today, sorry about the UK angle, but that was a big deal today and......well I'm English ;D
You are English or is there some Irish in there?

Ya definatly UK leaned when I read it, Oh well. ;D

Father was born in Ireland. I'm 100 percent Yorkshire ;D

Offline CNYMike

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Amazing news. Who would have thought George Osborne would be behind this of all people.

Hope this helps Orion too, as NASA won't want to cancel something with international commitments, right? I see Chris sorta hinted at that without stating it in the article.

Theoretically, the White House and Congress would be reluctant to cancel a "multinaitonal" program because it would be an international incedent with our trading partners.  And the world's space egencies do seem to be falling in love with the idea of missions to EML-2.  So that's possible.  And the UK's interest means they can finally live up to all that British SF.  Or at least try to.
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Offline RocketmanUS

Amazing news. Who would have thought George Osborne would be behind this of all people.

Hope this helps Orion too, as NASA won't want to cancel something with international commitments, right? I see Chris sorta hinted at that without stating it in the article.

Theoretically, the White House and Congress would be reluctant to cancel a "multinaitonal" program because it would be an international incedent with our trading partners.  And the world's space egencies do seem to be falling in love with the idea of missions to EML-2.  So that's possible.  And the UK's interest means they can finally live up to all that British SF.  Or at least try to.
Better to have ESA support a partnership in a Lunar or Mars Mission.

It would be better for ESA to make their own LEO crew taxi and launch on their own launcher.

Orion is for now the best option for us ( world ) for crew BLEO. Once we have a reason for multiple sorties for crew BLEO then an OTV ( orbital transfer vehicle ) would be justified in it's development to replace the Orion. The OTV could be capable if multiple in pace reuse plus carry more crew per sortie out to EML1/2 and LLO.

What is Lockheed point of view on this and their work force?
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Offline sdsds

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This is borrowing from ISS to support BEO missions.

Almost. The term "borrow" implies the intent to repay the loan. There's no evidence of that!

1. This is a way for ESA to contribute something in exchange for their use of ISS. Since the UK would be a major contributor, would that increase the likelihood of a UK astronaut flying on ISS?

2. Since in this scheme ESA would definitely not be contributing any ISS cargo resupply, would this increase the extent to which NASA would purchase resupply from commercial providers?
« Last Edit: 11/21/2012 09:18 PM by sdsds »
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Offline Moe Grills

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This is borrowing from ISS to support BEO missions.

Almost. The term "borrow" implies the intent to repay the loan. There's no evidence of that!

1. This is a way for ESA to contribute something in exchange for their use of ISS. Since the UK would be a major contributor, would that increase the likelihood of a UK astronaut flying on ISS?

I would go one step further: Is the British Space Agency's planned cooperation on Orion meant to seek a quid pro quo from NASA, hoping that NASA would invite a 'guest' British astronaut to become part of a crew...to
journey to lunar orbit sometime this decade, hopefully?

Offline manboy

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I don't like the plan but if Gersteinmaier is behind this than I'm just going to have to have faith that he knows what he's doing.
"Cheese has been sent into space before. But the same cheese has never been sent into space twice." - StephenB

Offline Go4TLI

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My prediction is this is the first step toward cancellation as total costs rise and schedule slips to the right. 

Also too bad for the American workforce who has invested 7 years working this American vehicle just to have a major sub-assembly outsourced to foreign governments and foreign industries

Online Chris Bergin

But on the other hand, the world's space agencies are slowly falling in love with the idea of a mission to EML-2:

Oh wow. We really should write something about that.........then people won't have to always link a short AvWeek article written 12 months later.

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/tag/gateway/

Cough ;)

Online Chris Bergin

My prediction is this is the first step toward cancellation as total costs rise and schedule slips to the right. 

Also too bad for the American workforce who has invested 7 years working this American vehicle just to have a major sub-assembly outsourced to foreign governments and foreign industries

Ok, I'll take you on with that. I've donned my crash helmet and have strapped in ;)

So.....didn't the total costs just get reduced by 100s of millions by ESA taking over the SM?

I hear you on the jobs of course, but some people might argue that Orion might of required a good push like this deal should be (international coop seemed to help keep the ISS somewhat on a forward path), because those "seven years" of Orion have only really resulted in a bunch of GTAs and a EFT-1 shell with some pipes on it inside KSC's O&C room?

Interesting point though, because there's clearly a reason the poll on the other thread was hardly pro-ESA SM for Orion.

Offline RocketmanUS

But on the other hand, the world's space agencies are slowly falling in love with the idea of a mission to EML-2:

Oh wow. We really should write something about that.........then people won't have to always link a short AvWeek article written 12 months later.

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/tag/gateway/

Cough ;)
EML1/2 as a gateway ( not the destination point ) to our destinations. How would ESA feel about developing the gateway station instead of the Orion SM. They already have a launcher to send it to ISS for assemble. Add in the EDS to send it to EML1/2 from another partner, perhaps Russia.
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Offline john smith 19

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A couple of points.

I'm not totally up to speed but *historically* ATV was a *barter* deal (effectively). Instead of ESA *paying* the US Govt (the cash *might* go to NASA but I'd guess it would be passed tot he US Treasury).

This however is a *new* (and substantial) piece of kit *based* on the hardware. Weather NASA will *stretch* this arrangement (which will have ended with the last ATV launch) or go with some new deal is unclear to me.

[edit] A *very* good question would be does this save NASA substantial cash it can direct to other uses? Chris says $100m's so that's a pretty good deal for the US taxpayer, ideally to go do more pressing near term NASA projects (whichever area you happen to be a supporter of) or (more realistically  :( )Congress can spend elsewhere (select favorite non-space usage as you prefer)  [edit]

Note that ESA is fond of "just returne" so the portion of work a country gets is proportional to how much they put in. With the UK pitching [edit] in 20m [edit]  that split will need to be reviewed but these are the sort of systems the UK has experience in through its satellite work (this would be *much* more problematic if the US had stayed with fuel cells).

The *big* change is the shift in UK *policy* and the idea that there could be a place for European astronauts, *possibly* with UK subjects on the roster.

How this will work out in funding terms is another matter. But in future UK schoolchildren could add *astronaut* to the list jobs they might be able to do *without* changing their nationality. I'll get the Tamworths watered and ready for their pre-flight.  :)

On a historical note the big event in UK space happened in the late 1960's when a committee composed of an anatomist, an aeronautical engineer, a classicist, a nuclear physicist, an industrial chemist, an ornithologist, a botanist, a medical researchers, an agronomist, an electrical engineer, a physical chemist and 2 mathematicians decided the UK did not need *independent* launch capability as HMG did not use space for much and those awfully nice Americans would help them out in future. Besides they still had nuclear weapons.
« Last Edit: 11/21/2012 11:49 PM by john smith 19 »
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Online Chris Bergin

But on the other hand, the world's space agencies are slowly falling in love with the idea of a mission to EML-2:

Oh wow. We really should write something about that.........then people won't have to always link a short AvWeek article written 12 months later.

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/tag/gateway/

Cough ;)
EML1/2 as a gateway ( not the destination point ) to our destinations. How would ESA feel about developing the gateway station instead of the Orion SM. They already have a launcher to send it to ISS for assemble. Add in the EDS to send it to EML1/2 from another partner, perhaps Russia.

Massive speculation, but this SM deal-a-rooney is based on ISS commit from 2017-2020. Maybe the 2020-2025 could bring them in on the Gateway? It is supposed to be made of international modules after all.

Offline Go4TLI

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My prediction is this is the first step toward cancellation as total costs rise and schedule slips to the right. 

Also too bad for the American workforce who has invested 7 years working this American vehicle just to have a major sub-assembly outsourced to foreign governments and foreign industries

Ok, I'll take you on with that. I've donned my crash helmet and have strapped in ;)

So.....didn't the total costs just get reduced by 100s of millions by ESA taking over the SM?

I hear you on the jobs of course, but some people might argue that Orion might of required a good push like this deal should be (international coop seemed to help keep the ISS somewhat on a forward path), because those "seven years" of Orion have only really resulted in a bunch of GTAs and a EFT-1 shell with some pipes on it inside KSC's O&C room?

Interesting point though, because there's clearly a reason the poll on the other thread was hardly pro-ESA SM for Orion.

No, total costs will go up and here is why:

1.  The CM will need to be redesigned since the SM is now "ATV-derived"  The SM is not plug-and-play hardware.  Software will also be impacted.  That will increase cost to the CM beyond baseline and will also have some impact on schedule.

2.  Another possibility is that the SM will be built to LM specs.  Therefore it is no longer "ATV-derived" and there will be significant cost and time importing those specs/requirements, etc into ESA and their European vendors.  It will be essentially starting over, which of course impacts the CM because people (which costs money) will have to be kept busy why ESA accomplishes what has already been accomplished.  This coupled together increases total cost and has a negative impact on schedule.

3.  ESA and their vendors are known to be late.  This will impact cost and schedule.  In addition, ESA (a conglomerate of governments that do not always march in step with each other) can just decide to pull the plug when another shiny object comes along.  I site ISS as an example and their abandonment of ATV at the same time they were pushing for an ISS life extension.  This of course, if it happens, will force NASA to now subsidize foreign companies directly with US taxpayer money at the expense of our own industrial base at a time that is detrimental to that industrial base. 

I take issue with your statement that ESA is a "good push" and now all of the sudden everything will be fine.  Orion should be further along than it is but you know as well as I do Ares I had a significant impact on the design cycles with evolving requirements as well as our own internal political climate and the limbo this vehicle has been placed in.  I simply do not see in any way ESA changes any of that.
« Last Edit: 11/21/2012 10:07 PM by Go4TLI »

Offline john smith 19

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Keep in mind a fair chunk of the OSC Cygnus will be made in Europe, as was 50% of the ISS modules.

ESA is also funding a closed cycle life support programme, which would be quite handy for lowering the supply chain to EML if you were serious about a *long* term base at that location.
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Online Chris Bergin

My prediction is this is the first step toward cancellation as total costs rise and schedule slips to the right. 

Also too bad for the American workforce who has invested 7 years working this American vehicle just to have a major sub-assembly outsourced to foreign governments and foreign industries

Ok, I'll take you on with that. I've donned my crash helmet and have strapped in ;)

So.....didn't the total costs just get reduced by 100s of millions by ESA taking over the SM?

I hear you on the jobs of course, but some people might argue that Orion might of required a good push like this deal should be (international coop seemed to help keep the ISS somewhat on a forward path), because those "seven years" of Orion have only really resulted in a bunch of GTAs and a EFT-1 shell with some pipes on it inside KSC's O&C room?

Interesting point though, because there's clearly a reason the poll on the other thread was hardly pro-ESA SM for Orion.

No, total costs will go up and here is why:

1.  The CM will need to be redesigned since the SM is now "ATV-derived"  The SM is not plug-and-play hardware.  Software will also be impacted.  That will increase cost to the CM beyond baseline and will also have some impact on schedule.

2.  Another possibility is that the SM will be built to LM specs.  Therefore it is no longer "ATV-derived" and there will be significant cost and time importing those specs/requirements, etc into ESA and their European vendors.  It will be essentially starting over, which of course impacts the CM because people (which costs money) will have to be kept busy why ESA accomplishes what has already been accomplished.  This coupled together increases total cost and has a negative impact on schedule.

3.  ESA and their vendors are known to be late.  This will impact cost and schedule.  In addition, ESA (a conglomerate of governments that do not always march in step with each other) can just decide to pull the plug when another shiny object comes along.  I site ISS as an example and their abandonment of ATV at the same time they were pushing for an ISS life extension.  This of course, if it happens, will force NASA to now subsidize foreign companies directly with US taxpayer money at the expense of our own industrial base at a time that is detrimental to that industrial base. 

I take issue with your statement that ESA is a "good push" and now all of the sudden everything will be fine.  Orion should be further along than it is but you know as well as I do Ares I had a significant impact on the design cycles with evolving requirements as well as our own internal political climate and the limbo this vehicle has been placed in.  I simply do not see in any way ESA changes any of that.

Thanks! More good context to tuck into there!

Offline Go4TLI

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Keep in mind a fair chunk of the OSC Cygnus will be made in Europe, as was 50% of the ISS modules.

ESA is also funding a closed cycle life support programme, which would be quite handy for lowering the supply chain to EML if you were serious about a *long* term base at that location.

Orbital is somewhat of a systems integrator and don't have the capability to do a lot of the vehicle.  In addition, that is their vehicle and not a US government vehicle, so there is a difference there.

With respect to the ISS modules, those were funded by NASA (with the exception of COL and JEM).

NASA and American industry is also doing a lot of work on closed loop ECLSS systems, some of those are onboard ISS right now. 

It is my opinion we should take care of our own industry with government dollars when our own industry can do it and not just spin and paint a picture of the wonders of international cooperation.

I stand by my argument that because of this total cost will go up, schedule will move to the right and the risk of cancellation because of that has now just increased.

Offline RocketmanUS

But on the other hand, the world's space agencies are slowly falling in love with the idea of a mission to EML-2:

Oh wow. We really should write something about that.........then people won't have to always link a short AvWeek article written 12 months later.

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/tag/gateway/

Cough ;)
EML1/2 as a gateway ( not the destination point ) to our destinations. How would ESA feel about developing the gateway station instead of the Orion SM. They already have a launcher to send it to ISS for assemble. Add in the EDS to send it to EML1/2 from another partner, perhaps Russia.

Massive speculation, but this SM deal-a-rooney is based on ISS commit from 2017-2020. Maybe the 2020-2025 could bring them in on the Gateway? It is supposed to be made of international modules after all.
2017-2020 what would ESA get from this deal for ISS?
2017-2020 Orion would not be sent to ISS in this time frame? Or if it did what launcher would it use  Areane, Atlas V, SLS?
Comercial is to be launching by then, CST-100/Atlas V would launch by then.

Orion will need the SM up till and most likely beyond 2035.
« Last Edit: 11/21/2012 10:30 PM by RocketmanUS »
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Offline sdsds

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1.  The CM will need to be redesigned since the SM is now "ATV-derived"  The SM is not plug-and-play hardware.  Software will also be impacted.  That will increase cost to the CM beyond baseline and will also have some impact on schedule.

2.  Another possibility is that the SM will be built to LM specs.  Therefore it is no longer "ATV-derived" and there will be significant cost and time importing those specs/requirements, etc into ESA and their European vendors.

I don't disagree with that, but looking on the bright side (or seeking a silver lining), this will result in a more publicly defined interface between the Orion CM and SM. It is possible this interface design will be a useful result in-and-of itself. So for example Lockheed-Martin might have a proprietary SM implementation and with a clearly specified CM/SM interface, the same CM design could work with either SM. More interestingly, a crisp specification might also enable a single SM design to support alternatives to the "stock" Lockheed-Martin CM!
« Last Edit: 11/21/2012 10:30 PM by sdsds »
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Offline Lee Jay

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http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2012/11/uk-steps-up-esa-commit-atv-service-module-orion/

Based on today, sorry about the UK angle, but that was a big deal today and......well I'm English ;D

That cinches it.  You'll never fly in space now - your head won't fit through the hatch!   ;D

Offline Khadgars

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Keep in mind a fair chunk of the OSC Cygnus will be made in Europe, as was 50% of the ISS modules.

ESA is also funding a closed cycle life support programme, which would be quite handy for lowering the supply chain to EML if you were serious about a *long* term base at that location.

Orbital is somewhat of a systems integrator and don't have the capability to do a lot of the vehicle.  In addition, that is their vehicle and not a US government vehicle, so there is a difference there.

With respect to the ISS modules, those were funded by NASA (with the exception of COL and JEM).

NASA and American industry is also doing a lot of work on closed loop ECLSS systems, some of those are onboard ISS right now. 

It is my opinion we should take care of our own industry with government dollars when our own industry can do it and not just spin and paint a picture of the wonders of international cooperation.

I stand by my argument that because of this total cost will go up, schedule will move to the right and the risk of cancellation because of that has now just increased.

You now believe because of international cooperation that the likely hood of Orion/SLS cancellation will now go up?  I would put that in the same category as saying everything is going to be peachy now that the UK is involved.  I suspect that it is likely to be somewhere in the middle.

Great article Chris, always enjoy reading your articles.  I find this as a good sign.  Has there been any word on Japanese involvement in EML-2 gateway?

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