Author Topic: Commercial Crew providers making "significant progress" toward first flights  (Read 14559 times)

Offline Kansan52

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Had that hit been to a window, the crew could have perished.


So this was worse than strikes that did happen to orbiter's windows?

The reason I ask is reading articles on the orbiters windows made it sound that the multiple layers could take a lot. Never occured to me that the radiator strike was large and energetic enough to take out a window. Trying to learn.

Offline joek

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They're not doing it anymore.  Kathy Lueders talked about this to the media in late-May.  In-flight abort test is not mandated by the CCtCap contracts; it was something extra the two providers aimed to do.

SpaceX in-flight abort test was part of CCiCap ($30M milestone #14) not CCtCap.

And it seems we have a conflict in sources saying different things. 5 days ago, Shotwell said in-flight abort is still happening.

Technically correct to state "not doing it under CCtCap", which is what Lueders may have been trying to communicate--but that seems like splitting hairs.

In any case, the last NAC status 28-Mar-2017 did not show the in-flight abort test in the "CCiCap Combined Milestone Summary" (pg. 12) where it was previously.  Which isn't necessarily definitive; wouldn't be the first time those charts were missing a few bits.

« Last Edit: 06/27/2017 11:03 PM by joek »

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Had that hit been to a window, the crew could have perished.


So this was worse than strikes that did happen to orbiter's windows?

The reason I ask is reading articles on the orbiters windows made it sound that the multiple layers could take a lot. Never occured to me that the radiator strike was large and energetic enough to take out a window. Trying to learn.

Much, much worse. Keep in mind the impact hole is more or less the size of the impacting object, so ~6x8 mm. The famous pit in the shuttle window was from a barely visible fleck of paint.

https://blogs.voanews.com/science-world/files/2012/03/sts7crack.jpg
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Offline Kansan52

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Offline Robotbeat

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Humor a space enthusiast with no aerospace background, how would Soyuz measure up to this standard?  Thanks.

It does not. Not even close.

http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-iarticle_query?letter=E&classic=YES&bibcode=2012ESASP.699E..32L&page=&type=SCREEN_VIEW&data_type=PDF_HIGH&send=GET&filetype=.pdf

Correct. However, it's not like there's much a choice for the time being, as we all know.
If MMOD is the bottleneck for commercial crew, then we ABSOLUTELY have a choice: Use commercial crew which might struggle to meet the arbitrary MMOD threshold or continue to use Soyuz, which doesn't get anywhere close.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Humor a space enthusiast with no aerospace background, how would Soyuz measure up to this standard?  Thanks.

It does not. Not even close.

http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-iarticle_query?letter=E&classic=YES&bibcode=2012ESASP.699E..32L&page=&type=SCREEN_VIEW&data_type=PDF_HIGH&send=GET&filetype=.pdf

Correct. However, it's not like there's much a choice for the time being, as we all know.
If MMOD is the bottleneck for commercial crew, then we ABSOLUTELY have a choice: Use commercial crew which might struggle to meet the arbitrary MMOD threshold or continue to use Soyuz, which doesn't get anywhere close.

I agree. I meant that whether they meet those thresholds or not it does not matter because they're not available to use yet. Of course, when the time comes wavers will likely have to be handed out because they will be better than the Soyuz in almost every way. It wouldn't make much sense to do anything else.

Offline Robotbeat

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Status and update article by Chris Gebhardt, and use of Nathan Koga's sexy L2 renders :)

https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2017/06/commercial-crew-providers-significant-progress-flights/
Chris and Chris G: excellent article, as always. Keep up the good work.

However, I'm annoyed about the remarks by Dr. Patricia Sanders quoted below:

Quote
“The other provider has placed a value on agility and rapid problem solving with beneficial results.  They are also showing signs of evolving to reconcile their approach with the benefits and need for discipline and control.

“However, they need to ensure that the evolution reflects an inherent desire to adopt the tenets of systems engineering.”

It is another fine example of ASAP trying to stifle progress by expecting agile parties to adapt old-style rigidity.
Very disappointing and one of the many reasons why I don't take ASAP for serious. Their stressing of safety is extreme, to the point that no manned spaceflight would be practically possible, if providers were to adhere to all of their recommendations.
Completely agree.

But I'll go a step further: “However, they need to ensure that the evolution reflects an inherent desire to adopt the tenets of systems engineering.”
...those are the words of someone indoctrinated into a religion, not just someone who is very cautious.

It is definitely possible that "adopting the tenets of systems engineering" is a good way to end up less safe at the end of the day. For example, if SLS/Orion is the product of "adopting the tenets of systems engineering," then SpaceX is already WAY safer simply because they have a rocket that can afford to fly more than once before crew are put on board.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Status and update article by Chris Gebhardt, and use of Nathan Koga's sexy L2 renders :)

https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2017/06/commercial-crew-providers-significant-progress-flights/
Chris and Chris G: excellent article, as always. Keep up the good work.

However, I'm annoyed about the remarks by Dr. Patricia Sanders quoted below:

Quote
“The other provider has placed a value on agility and rapid problem solving with beneficial results.  They are also showing signs of evolving to reconcile their approach with the benefits and need for discipline and control.

“However, they need to ensure that the evolution reflects an inherent desire to adopt the tenets of systems engineering.”

It is another fine example of ASAP trying to stifle progress by expecting agile parties to adapt old-style rigidity.
Very disappointing and one of the many reasons why I don't take ASAP for serious. Their stressing of safety is extreme, to the point that no manned spaceflight would be practically possible, if providers were to adhere to all of their recommendations.
Completely agree.

But I'll go a step further: “However, they need to ensure that the evolution reflects an inherent desire to adopt the tenets of systems engineering.”
...those are the words of someone indoctrinated into a religion, not just someone who is very cautious.

It is definitely possible that "adopting the tenets of systems engineering" is a good way to end up less safe at the end of the day. For example, if SLS/Orion is the product of "adopting the tenets of systems engineering," then SpaceX is already WAY safer simply because they have a rocket that can afford to fly more than once before crew are put on board.

Oh yeah. Obviously one needs to consider any dangers which may increase the risk of LOC and take steps to reduce that risk reasonably. However, if get stuck on analysis and never fly the damn thing you'll never know how safe your spacecraft is in practice, and you'll likely find you've made decisions which actually make the spacecraft less safe at a much later date and at a much higher cost. Therefore, a middle ground must be reached, and I think that ASAP currently is lying a bit too far to the side of the latter in my opinion.

Online TomH

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What percent of the strikes to STS and ISS are/were from naturally occurring micrometeoroids and what percent from human made space junk? (Is it always possible to tell?) I know this is the commercial crew section and these craft will not go beyond LEO, but if these are mostly from human made junk, that bodes well for deep space vehicles as we don't have human made junk out in deep space. OTOH, if most are from naturally occurring MMODs, it does not at all bode well for deep space vehicles.

Online woods170

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Is SpaceX still planning on doing an in-flight abort test or was that plan scrapped? I haven't heard much about that test in quite some time.

They're not doing it anymore.  Kathy Lueders talked about this to the media in late-May.  In-flight abort test is not mandated by the CCtCap contracts; it was something extra the two providers aimed to do.
Only SpaceX has an in-flight abort test on the schedule. So, provider, as opposed to providers.
Also, if Gwynne is to be believed than the in-flight abort test is still on.
« Last Edit: 06/28/2017 07:10 AM by woods170 »

Online Coastal Ron

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It is definitely possible that "adopting the tenets of systems engineering" is a good way to end up less safe at the end of the day. For example, if SLS/Orion is the product of "adopting the tenets of systems engineering," then SpaceX is already WAY safer simply because they have a rocket that can afford to fly more than once before crew are put on board.

I don't mind rules, but I don't like rules that aren't applied evenly, and the SLS & Orion programs sometime appear to be operating under less restrictive rules than Commercial Crew - or at least some people want them to be operating under less restrictive rules.

And I'm not saying anyone is trying to be deliberately unsafe, just that there is not a consistent standard that is being applied.

Also, not that everything should be assumed to be 100% safe, since that would mean we would never launch any humans into space, so we need to continue to have open and honest discussions about what the goals are, but also what is capable today. And then apply those rules evenly...
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Online synchrotron

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1. My guess, the Soyuz would not meet these standards.

2. The shuttle data is a great baseline.

IMO.

I think I politely disagree.  The Soyuz heatshield is not exposed to MMOD for very long prior to re-entry.  That's part of why the vehicle can stay on station for up to 6 months.  MMOD risk arises both from the MMOD environment, but also from the exposure duration.

Similarly, the shuttle mission durations never exceeded 17 days - nonetheless they did incur some MMOD strikes which fortunately did not endanger the vehicle or crew.

Offline RedLineTrain

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Quote
“The other provider has placed a value on agility and rapid problem solving with beneficial results.  They are also showing signs of evolving to reconcile their approach with the benefits and need for discipline and control.

“However, they need to ensure that the evolution reflects an inherent desire to adopt the tenets of systems engineering.”

Uh, yeh.  I'm glad that SpaceX is never going to adopt the "tenets of systems engineering" while Musk is in charge.

Offline Rocket Science

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Status and update article by Chris Gebhardt, and use of Nathan Koga's sexy L2 renders :)

https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2017/06/commercial-crew-providers-significant-progress-flights/
Chris and Chris G: excellent article, as always. Keep up the good work.

However, I'm annoyed about the remarks by Dr. Patricia Sanders quoted below:

Quote
“The other provider has placed a value on agility and rapid problem solving with beneficial results.  They are also showing signs of evolving to reconcile their approach with the benefits and need for discipline and control.

“However, they need to ensure that the evolution reflects an inherent desire to adopt the tenets of systems engineering.”

It is another fine example of ASAP trying to stifle progress by expecting agile parties to adapt old-style rigidity.
Very disappointing and one of the many reasons why I don't take ASAP for serious. Their stressing of safety is extreme, to the point that no manned spaceflight would be practically possible, if providers were to adhere to all of their recommendations.

ASAPs desired crew vehicle for trips to space

 ;)
Nah, they would probably say you can put humans in a vehicle carrying explosive munitions...
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Offline Jcc

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Is SpaceX still planning on doing an in-flight abort test or was that plan scrapped? I haven't heard much about that test in quite some time.

They're not doing it anymore.  Kathy Lueders talked about this to the media in late-May.  In-flight abort test is not mandated by the CCtCap contracts; it was something extra the two providers aimed to do.
Only SpaceX has an in-flight abort test on the schedule. So, provider, as opposed to providers.
Also, if Gwynne is to be believed than the in-flight abort test is still on.

I mean no disrespect to Gwynne, but let's check back in 6 months to see what actually happens. Targets tend to slip and plans change. If things go "super well" as Elon says, they might even fly DM-1 in December this year, and they might or might not do the in flight abort next year. If they could do it with a "flight proven booster" all the better. With a milestone payment of $30M they might even make money that way.

Offline Negan

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So a very interest question on reddit in reference to this article. SpaceX's fueling procedures didn't seem to come up as an issue this time. Does this mean that ASAP no longer sees this as an issue?

Offline abaddon

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The AMOS-6 mishap was mentioned somewhat obliquely, and the quote "The other provider has placed a value on agility and rapid problem solving with beneficial results.  They are also showing signs of evolving to reconcile their approach with the benefits and need for discipline and control." is also an indirect reference to it.

It does seem like the fueling procedure itself is less of an issue now; as you note it was not directly mentioned as a concern.
« Last Edit: 06/29/2017 03:32 PM by abaddon »

Offline clongton

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You know there were two (2) spacecraft discussed in Chris's excellent article (and the ASAP report) but this thread has quickly devolved into a SpaceX-only thread (again). Why is that? While I admit that Dragon is designed to go BLEO and Starliner isn't, that is not intended to snub Starliner. Starliner was designed to fulfill a LEO mission, is an *excellent* spacecraft and deserves a lot more discussion than it is getting. Anyone who wants to be a Dragon fan is welcome to do that, but this is not a SpaceX thread - or at least it shouldn't be. This thread should be about BOTH providers (Boeing and SpaceX) and their respective spacecraft because the ASAP report was about the progress that "both" have made toward their 1st flight. A little more discussion about the actual report please, and could we include Starliner in that?
« Last Edit: 06/29/2017 03:49 PM by clongton »
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Offline ngilmore

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Question about these two statements from the article: "Presently, ... the Starliner STA (Structural Test Article) is progressing through its test regime."
"...the builds for Starliner spacecrafts two and three are progressing"

So it seems Boeing expects the STA testing is merely a formality and they don't expect to learn anything from it that would affect spacecraft manufacture? Just validating software models?

I'm curious if Orion and Dragon had concurrent builds of flight hardware prior to STA testing being complete. Is it common aerospace procedure?

edit: grammar
« Last Edit: 06/29/2017 04:07 PM by ngilmore »

Online gongora

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Question about these two statements from the article: "Presently, ... the Starliner STA (Structural Test Article) is progressing through its test regime."
"...the builds for Starliner spacecrafts two and three are progressing"

So it seems Boeing expects the STA testing is merely a formality and they don't expect to learn anything from it that would affect spacecraft manufacture? Just validating software models?

I'm curious if Orion and Dragon had concurrent builds of flight hardware prior to STA testing being complete. Is it common aerospace procedure?

edit: grammar

Dragon did.  Only way to have a prayer of meeting the original schedule.

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