Author Topic: NASA updates status and timetable of ambitious Asteroid Redirect Mission  (Read 11478 times)


Offline cro-magnon gramps

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Is this not putting Congressional Feet to The Fire; brave move Gerst...  ;) two thumbs up:

Bill Gerstenmaier, Associate Administrator for Human Exploration and Operations Directorate, added to Mr. Ticker’s answer, noting that the ARCM portion of ARM needed to happen in the 2026 time frame to maintain the agency’s current goals regarding Orion and timetables for human missions to Mars in the 2030s.

Mr. Gerstenmaier further stated that “We had trouble getting the funding together for this thing.  So this slip of the one year that you see wasn’t caused by technical.  It was really caused by budget availability.  We just didn’t have the budget available to go do this.”
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Offline redliox

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Mr. Gerstenmaier further stated that “We had trouble getting the funding together for this thing.  So this slip of the one year that you see wasn’t caused by technical.  It was really caused by budget availability.  We just didn’t have the budget available to go do this.”

Considering the unpopularity of it I'm not surprised.  If they truly want to prove it's an asset for Mars, they need to change the targets to Phobos or Deimos.  If the ultimate point is to prove SEP can deliver (or return) things from Mars, send it to Mars orbit and then return it to Orion in Lunar orbit.  People, congressional, scientific, and public, would finally click and say "Ah I see now..."

Of course this is just me rambling, but we'll see in another year or two.
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Online Robotbeat

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Mr. Gerstenmaier further stated that “We had trouble getting the funding together for this thing.  So this slip of the one year that you see wasn’t caused by technical.  It was really caused by budget availability.  We just didn’t have the budget available to go do this.”

Considering the unpopularity of it I'm not surprised.  If they truly want to prove it's an asset for Mars, they need to change the targets to Phobos or Deimos.  If the ultimate point is to prove SEP can deliver (or return) things from Mars, send it to Mars orbit and then return it to Orion in Lunar orbit.  People, congressional, scientific, and public, would finally click and say "Ah I see now..."

Of course this is just me rambling, but we'll see in another year or two.
There are MULTIPLE purposes to ARM, and many of them are very good on their own merit. For instance, changing the targets to Phobos or Deimos would not allow measurable testing of the enhanced gravity tractor technique.

On a slight side note: ARM is one of the only big HSF-related projects that NASA is doing that doesn't become immediately irrelevant if SpaceX is fully successful with MCT. If ARM is just an SEP demo for a Mars Transfer Hab, for instance, it would become irrelevant if MCT really works.

I'm not counting chickens (MCT) before they hatch, but NASA should be prepared for the possibility that significantly superior and cheaper approaches to Mars transport are developed. As it is now, if MCT is successful, Orion, LAS, and SLS are kind of pointless, and the point of the new push for space habs (as a prototype for Mars Transfer Vehicle) is significantly diminished (although still somewhat useful). ARM would remain very useful.

ARM is a capability that any space-faring civilization ought to have (especially NASA, since at least to some extent planetary defense is part of their job), and we shouldn't cancel it because of the idiocy and/or shortsightedness of Congress.

It also has the side effect of encouraging/accelerating asteroid mining.
« Last Edit: 08/02/2016 01:08 AM by Robotbeat »
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Offline Jimmy Murdok

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It also has the side effect of encouraging/accelerating asteroid mining.
IMHO this is the most interesting part of it. Mining the Moon is too deep in the gravity well for private companies while heavy boulders in it's vicinity is a realistic target. Later on, the Gateway would make a lot of sense providing direct access to rocks and reusable landers for surface expeditions. If not to be cancelled, this is a sustainable architecture somewhere for Orion & SLS, not Mars.
I just miss money for a low cost mid size commercial lander, one step at a time.

Online Coastal Ron

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It also has the side effect of encouraging/accelerating asteroid mining.

While I think helping our private section figure out how to increase our GDP by exploiting resources off Earth is a good idea, it's not currently an acknowledged government initiative.  Instead, NASA states about the ARM:

"This Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) is part of NASA’s plan to advance the new technologies and spaceflight experience needed for a human mission to the Martian system in the 2030s."

This is not NASA's fault.  NASA has a limited ability to choose what it wants to do.  Let's hope the next President and Congress can reassess NASA's priorities and make one of them the support of private space mining efforts.  And if that is made a goal, then hopefully we can, you know, get the private sector space mining companies involved in some way.

In the meantime we have this politically weak asteroid redirect effort that relies on a transportation system that itself has a questionable future.  I think we'll have to wait until after the election to truly get an idea if it's got a future or not...
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Offline KelvinZero

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In the meantime we have this politically weak asteroid redirect effort that relies on a transportation system that itself has a questionable future.  I think we'll have to wait until after the election to truly get an idea if it's got a future or not...
I think the reason it is politically weak is that the politicians look at it and see that it barely does rely on SLS.. and they get suspicious.. :)

Personally I think it is awesome. The asteroid capture part is so cheap it fits in the pocket change of a moon or mars mission, and pretty much everything in it is a subset of the basics you should do anyway.

As boondoggles go, it would be an awesome boondoggle to get trapped in. The politicans would finally be trapped into doing the things they should have been doing all along. Add a DSH, and just keep sending out that tug for more samples and we would be practicing everything we need to colonise the asteroid belt, in a far cheaper, safer and more effective way than visiting just one sample of an asteroid.

The shuttle was an awful boondoggle to get trapped into because it forced us to develop everything around the shuttle, basically trying to think of ways to use all its capabilities on every single mission, crew, cargo and a garage, exactly wrong for assembling a base around the moon or phobos that has to be checked out before we dare send people, and in the most expensive way possible.

The ISS actually has trapped politicians into supporting a little bit of tech development, but the focus on highly sensitive microgravity research hamstrings it for ironically more down to earth BEO tech development. If we think of ISS not as the thing in orbit but the much larger organisation of companies on the ground including academics wanting something to publish, and spacex wanting a destination and some cash, it is not the worst boondoggle we could have.

Flags and footprints? Very inspiring in a throw up in the back of your mouth kind of way.. and orders of magnitude more expensive for very little tech development.

Offline jgoldader

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Did the budget for this get reinstated?  Last I read here, it was explicitly removed from the markup in the House's budget, wasn't it?
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Offline jgoldader

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More recent info is available here

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=39540.msg1546500#msg1546500

As of June 2016, the House bill that funds NASA, among other agencies, specifically stated that no money was being appropriated for ARRM.  The bill has not yet been passed.  I don't know how far along the Senate is.

(Mods: I'm just making the point about the budget, not arguing in favor of, or against, it.)
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Online Robotbeat

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It also has the side effect of encouraging/accelerating asteroid mining.

While I think helping our private section figure out how to increase our GDP by exploiting resources off Earth is a good idea, it's not currently an acknowledged government initiative.
False.
Quote
Instead, NASA states about the ARM...
Um, I said it was a side effect. Just because a single statement about ARM doesn't talk about it doesn't mean it's not there. That's the whole problem: people take the existence of one goal as evidence that others don't exist. That's dumb.

Here's my evidence:
https://deepspaceindustries.com/nasa-plans-to-work-with-private-companies-to-retrieve-asteroid-material/

and:
http://www.nasa.gov/content/nasa-selects-studies-for-the-asteroid-redirect-mission
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Planetary Resources Development Corp. in Redmond, Washington: The “Arkyd Spacecraft Collaboration with NASA’s Asteroid Initiative” study will determine how three classes of small, low-cost spacecraft being developed by Planetary Resources could be modified to enhance NASA’s planned asteroid missions.
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Deep Space Industries in Houston-: “Secondary Spacecraft in Support of ARM,” which will assess three spacecraft types being developed by DSI for compatibility with the ARV or launch on SLS, and examine public-private partnership approaches.

And, of course, the asteroid would be left in orbit and so could be used as an early demonstration asteroid for asteroid mining companies. This would be greatly advantageous due to allowing multiple attempts to occur quickly. Instead of taking years to get to a target just to find out the technique didn't work, once the asteroid is in orbit, ideas can be tested within days or weeks of launch, allowing much faster iteration to a workable asteroid mining technique. And it is possible to refuel and reuse the ARM spacecraft after its primary mission to actually bring more and larger rocks back for more intense ISRU.
« Last Edit: 08/02/2016 02:04 PM by Robotbeat »
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http://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/files/IAC-14-D3-Mazanek.pdf
ASTEROID REDIRECT MISSION CONCEPT:
A BOLD APPROACH FOR UTILIZING SPACE RESOURCES
Quote
The paradigm shift enabled by the ARM concept would allow in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) to be used at the human mission departure location (i.e., cislunar space) versus exclusively at the deep-space mission destination. This approach drastically reduces the barriers associated with utilizing ISRU for human deep-space missions. The successful testing of ISRU techniques and associated equipment could enable large-scale commercial ISRU operations to become a reality and enable a future space-based economy utilizing processed asteroidal materials.

(By the way, this paper is from 2014, as ARM was being really formulated.)
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Online Robotbeat

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From the original 2012 Keck study which started this whole thing:
http://www.nss.org/settlement/asteroids/Asteroid_Retrieval_Feasibility_Study_2012.pdf
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These activities could jump-start an entire in situ resource utilization (ISRU) industry.
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Several activities could take place after the NEA is placed in cislunar orbit to benefit human exploration, the development of ISRU, and science.
Quote
• Testing of large-scale sample acquisition using various collection approaches, leading to subsequent mining activities.

And especially this page:
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Mining/Benefaction/Extraction/Fabrication – The technical requirements for mining asteroids would be as diverse as those used on Earth. Plausible asteroidal feedstocks cover a vast range of chemical compositions and physical properties, suggesting a careful tailoring of drilling, blasting, cutting, and crushing hardware to the chosen target—and placing a premium upon prior knowledge of the nature of the target material. Indeed, one of the central reasons for choosing a water-bearing C-type asteroid as our first target is that the chemical and physical properties of these materials are both rather well understood and benign (very low crushing strength and high content of desirable volatiles). Benchscale prototypes of systems for processing asteroidal materials have been developed in laboratories on Earth, in some cases using real meteorite materials as the feedstock.
Further development of equipment for effecting mineral separation on asteroids, a process that would become more important in potential future missions to volatile-poor metal-bearing asteroids, could await both experience with the first retrieved asteroid and laboratory investigations on meteorite samples. Beneficiation (the selective enrichment of desired minerals) may in many cases require crushing of the target rock, followed by magnetic, electrostatic, or other means of concentration. Such concentration technologies would also be of considerable value on the Moon for the concentration of potential ores such as ilmenite.
The extraction of a desired material (water, carbon, nitrogen, iron, nickel, sulfur, platinum-group metals, etc.) may involve either chemical or physical processes. Examples include thermal decomposition of clay minerals and hydrated salts to release water vapor, Mond-process volatilization and separation of metallic iron and nickel, electrolysis of molten silicates, or any of dozens of other candidate techniques which would be chosen for their relevance to the intended target and the desired product.
Fabrication of products would likewise involve a host of different possible processes. Production of high-purity water for propulsion or life-support use may require controlled distillation of the first-cut water driven off by heating the asteroid material to separate the water from undesirable contaminants such as volatile organics and sulfur and chlorine compounds. Likewise, production of high-purity iron (99.9999% iron has the corrosion resistance of stainless steel and a very high tensile strength) could be effected by Mond-process volatilization of native metal alloys, simple distillation to separate iron and nickel carbonyls, and controlled thermal decomposition of the iron pentacarbonyl vapor in a heated mold (at about 200 Celsius and 1 atm pressure). Fabrication of refractory bricks or aerobrakes could be done by microwave sintering of appropriate metal-oxide mixtures in molds. These candidate fabrication processes could be developed sequentially as our experience with in-space processing grows, and as new classes of asteroidal feedstock become available.
« Last Edit: 08/02/2016 02:22 PM by Robotbeat »
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Online Coastal Ron

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Um, I said it was a side effect. Just because a single statement about ARM doesn't talk about it doesn't mean it's not there. That's the whole problem: people take the existence of one goal as evidence that others don't exist. That's dumb.

I understand your point of view, but by nature secondary goals are not going to be as visible as primary goals.  And unfortunately the ARM's primary mission to support a human mission to Mars is not that convincing, so that drags down the perception of value for the whole effort.

And as I stated I would like a public-private effort to work on extracting resources from space.  But as long as the primary goal is focused on Mars, and this effort is tied to using the hideously expensive SLS/Orion transportation system, it's not going to have a strong chance to succeed.

My $0.02
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 Robotbeat

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Um, I said it was a side effect. Just because a single statement about ARM doesn't talk about it doesn't mean it's not there. That's the whole problem: people take the existence of one goal as evidence that others don't exist. That's dumb.

I understand your point of view, but by nature secondary goals are not going to be as visible as primary goals.  ...
Yeah, and?

That's the whole problem. This stupid assumption that there can only be one worthwhile goal for something. ARM breaks that mold firmly.

And I think that ARM would benefit tremendously if the case for it were more publicly and firmly made:

1) Enhanced gravity tractor technique.
2) Asteroid mining (aka ISRU) in 3 ways:
  a) piggy back microsats by commercial ventures who want to contribute data to the mission
  b) bringing a big rock to cislunar space where asteroid mining techniques can be directly tested in a representative space environment but with low latency and easy opportunities (fast turnaround) to enable quick iterations and improvements
  c) the actual spacecraft being reused to capture more rocks for ISRU/mining after main mission is done
3) SEP demo
4) Scientific sampling (including characterizing asteroids for hazard analysis)
5) Ability to test other asteroid defense technique, such as direct thrusting, while accomplishing the above goals and providing a proven platform that could enable other techniques such as "enhanced kinetic impact" (which could in principle defend against even comets).

Just like the Mars colonization thing, I think NASA's voice and articulation is muffled by a desire not to whip up controversy and just an overall risk averseness and desire for consensus. But these are things which ARM was really intended for, and we ought to be vocal about them.

Fundamentally, ARM (especially Option B) is a capability that every space-faring species should possess. And we shouldn't short-change it by trying to pidgeon-hole the concept into fitting just as a small, incremental cog in the Mars Campaign (which may soon become obsolete anyway).
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Offline A_M_Swallow

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{snip}
Fundamentally, ARM (especially Option B) is a capability that every space-faring species should possess. And we shouldn't short-change it by trying to pidgeon-hole the concept into fitting just as a small, incremental cog in the Mars Campaign (which may soon become obsolete anyway).

The M in ARM stands for mission not Mars.

The Mars mission may buy a second SEP tug cheap (or the same one second hand).

This is an asteroid mission.

Online Coastal Ron

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Just like the Mars colonization thing, I think NASA's voice and articulation is muffled by a desire not to whip up controversy and just an overall risk averseness and desire for consensus.

NASA is one of many government agencies and departments, so NASA is not unusual in this regard.  And every department and agency works for the President and is funded by Congress, so it's not like they have control over their own destiny.  If you want that you have to be in the private sector (ala Musk and his focus on Mars, or the space mining companies).

Quote
But these are things which ARM was really intended for, and we ought to be vocal about them.

And you're doing a good job highlighting the secondary objectives, for me at least.  Because I have been aware of the primary goal, and about some of the technologies, but the conversation about it really is dominated by whether it's primary mission is worthwhile or not.  And unfortunately the perception is that it's primary mission is not that exciting.

Quote
Fundamentally, ARM (especially Option B) is a capability that every space-faring species should possess. And we shouldn't short-change it by trying to pidgeon-hole the concept into fitting just as a small, incremental cog in the Mars Campaign (which may soon become obsolete anyway).

I agree that we have basic technologies and techniques that we should be focusing on before putting a major focus on before our government goes to Mars.  However, Congress is not interested in doing that.

So you're kind of like Sisyphus pushing his boulder up the hill, only to see it rolling back down.  Instead of continuing to repeat this over and over again, we either need to change the boulder or change the hill (metaphorically speaking).

In other words, let's hope whoever is President next decides to actually listen to suggestions for focusing on the types of technologies and techniques that you and I want to see developed.  Then we have to hope they can get Congress to go along.  Which means our goal should be to somehow get the attention of the next President as soon after the election as possible, or before if we know who their space experts are.

Let's stop being Sisyphus...
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 Robotbeat

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Again, "primary objective" here is what?

ARM cannot be separated from the other objectives. To do so is to kill the concept with ignorance.
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Robotbeat you sold me on this mission so well that I'm almost ready to go start a kickstarter. wouldn't it be swell if someone else did this?
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
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Offline GWH


And I think that ARM would benefit tremendously if the case for it were more publicly and firmly made:

1) Enhanced gravity tractor technique.
2) Asteroid mining (aka ISRU) in 3 ways:
  a) piggy back microsats by commercial ventures who want to contribute data to the mission
  b) bringing a big rock to cislunar space where asteroid mining techniques can be directly tested in a representative space environment but with low latency and easy opportunities (fast turnaround) to enable quick iterations and improvements
  c) the actual spacecraft being reused to capture more rocks for ISRU/mining after main mission is done
3) SEP demo
4) Scientific sampling (including characterizing asteroids for hazard analysis)

This is all great, but to truly enable these in a larger vision why stop there?  Why not use the deep space habitats already being developed to dock the sample to and create some synergy within the goals of developing various Journey to Mars tech?  Why invest so much in development costs only to go after a single sample rather than spreading out risk over multiple mission/targets?  How much more could be possible if these samples were placed in a destination where the possibility of regular commercial resupply missions to a manned science lab and all the localized infrastructure could exist?

Rhetorical questions, but just seems like the potential to do more is there and it's the tentative manner in which this mission is planned that is detrimental to it's support.

Offline A_M_Swallow

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This is all great, but to truly enable these in a larger vision why stop there?  Why not use the deep space habitats already being developed to dock the sample to and create some synergy within the goals of developing various Journey to Mars tech?  Why invest so much in development costs only to go after a single sample rather than spreading out risk over multiple mission/targets?  How much more could be possible if these samples were placed in a destination where the possibility of regular commercial resupply missions to a manned science lab and all the localized infrastructure could exist?

Rhetorical questions, but just seems like the potential to do more is there and it's the tentative manner in which this mission is planned that is detrimental to it's support.

That is a mammoth cost and time increase.

Offline tea monster

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So let me get this right...

People are complaining about the ARM mission as it dosen't have enough about the 'Journey to Mars' about it.

When in actual fact, there is no 'Journey to Mars' apart from a lot of press releases and a huge booster which nobody is interested in creating payloads for, let alone any concrete plans for a putting a mission to the red planet on top of said booster.

I'd have thought that producing a vehicle that can demonstrate the ability to save the planet by changing the course of an asteroid would be worth at least 5 x the funding levels.

That is entirely apart from developing a working high-power SEP vehicle, giving the fledgling asteroid mining industry a boost and providing a target for ISRU development.

I don't want this mission thrown away as it's not about Mars - and then when this Mars plan that has no funding never materializes, we are left with just pretty graphics and no space hardware at all.

EDIT: Just saw this post over at Space News - No mention in the article is made of the funding being released, just that they are pressing ahead. Does this mean it's 'go' again or is it just more studies and the funds are still not there?
http://spacenews.com/nasa-moves-ahead-with-asteroid-redirect-mission-despite-cost-increase/
« Last Edit: 08/17/2016 07:43 AM by tea monster »

Offline A_M_Swallow

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{snip}
EDIT: Just saw this post over at Space News - No mention in the article is made of the funding being released, just that they are pressing ahead. Does this mean it's 'go' again or is it just more studies and the funds are still not there?
http://spacenews.com/nasa-moves-ahead-with-asteroid-redirect-mission-despite-cost-increase/

Or someone in NASA HQ is taking a big risk.

If Congress grants the money the project is ready to go. NASA issues the contracts.
If Congress says no then NASA announces there are no awards.

Offline jgoldader

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{snip}
EDIT: Just saw this post over at Space News - No mention in the article is made of the funding being released, just that they are pressing ahead. Does this mean it's 'go' again or is it just more studies and the funds are still not there?
http://spacenews.com/nasa-moves-ahead-with-asteroid-redirect-mission-despite-cost-increase/

Or someone in NASA HQ is taking a big risk.

If Congress grants the money the project is ready to go. NASA issues the contracts.
If Congress says no then NASA announces there are no awards.

Remember the law of inertia also applies to bureaucracies.
Recovering astronomer

Offline catdlr

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September 12, 2016
MEDIA ADVISORY M16-107

White House, NASA to Discuss Asteroid Redirect Mission’s Importance for Journey to Mars, Planetary Defense


NASA will provide three virtual updates on two planned Asteroid Redirect Missions (ARM)   Wednesday, Sept. 14 at the agency’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. NASA Television will provide coverage at 11 a.m. EDT of the first briefing to discuss ARM’s contributions to the Journey to Mars and protection of our planet.

ARM will demonstrate capabilities for future Mars-level exploration missions closer to home, and will fly missions with technologies and operational constraints the agency will encounter on the way to the Red Planet. It also will test techniques that might be used to divert a small asteroid, if one were identified and predicted to impact Earth in the future.

A full schedule of activities on Sept. 14, taking place in Goddard’s Robotic Operations Center, is as follows:

11 a.m. – What is the Asteroid Redirect Mission?
Senior leadership from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and NASA will discuss what ARM is, what the mission’s scientific and technological benefits are, how the mission will support the goal of sending humans to Mars in the 2030s, and how ARM will demonstrate technology relevant to defending Earth from potentially hazardous asteroids. The briefing will air live on NASA TV and the agency’s website. The participants are:

Assistant to the President for Science and Technology Dr. John P. Holdren
NASA Administrator Charles Bolden
NASA’s ARM Program Director Michele Gates
12 p.m. – ARM Industry and Community Update
Following the general briefing, NASA scientists and engineers will provide a technical update on the robotic mission, including recent progress, a new partnership opportunity for hosted payloads, a membership call to join the mission’s investigation team, an upcoming request for proposal on the robotic spacecraft, and more.

The technical briefing will stream live through Adobe Connect. The public and media are invited to watch the virtual update online, and submit questions throughout the event.

For more information, including how to participate in the briefing online, and an agenda, visit NASA’s ARM Virtual Industry Day webpage.

3 p.m. – Facebook Live Q&A
To round out the day, NASA will host a Facebook Live event to briefly describe the mission, take a virtual tour of the Robotic Operations Center at Goddard, and answer questions from social media about ARM. Ben Cichy, asteroid operations phase lead for the robotic ARM at Goddard, will participate in the question-and-answer session.

The event will air live on Goddard’s Facebook page. Social media followers can watch live and submit questions online.

During the course of the two ARM missions, NASA will send a robotic spacecraft to an asteroid millions of miles in deep space to retrieve a multi-ton boulder and bring it to an orbit near Earth’s moon. An astronaut crew then will be launched aboard NASA’s Orion spacecraft and Space Launch System rocket to visit the boulder to collect the largest and most pristine sample of an asteroid ever retrieved for scientific study.

The dual missions will involve NASA’s first integrated robotic and crewed operations beyond the moon and validate capabilities such as the first use of large-scale solar electric propulsion (SEP) to move large masses in space, a capability that will be needed to send cargo to Mars. Crew members who visit the boulder will conduct multiple spacewalks for selection, extraction, containment and sample return. The asteroid sample could provide insight on the beginning of our solar system, and help scientists develop tools and techniques for resource extraction.

ARM also will be used to demonstrate an asteroid deflection technique called a gravity tractor, which is strongly supported by the planetary defense community. This technique may be a more efficient, gradual and predictable way to divert a potentially hazardous asteroid from colliding with Earth than other deflection concepts.

To learn more about NASA’s Asteroid Redirect Mission, visit:

https://www.nasa.gov/arm

To learn more about the agency’s Journey to Mars, visit:

https://www.nasa.gov/journeytomars

-end-

Concept images showing the ARV collecting the boulder.
As part of the Asteroid Redirect Mission, NASA plans to send a robotic spacecraft to an asteroid tens of millions of miles away from Earth, capture a multi-ton boulder, and bring it to an orbit near the moon for future crew exploration. The mission, which will demonstrate multiple capabilities needed for the Journey to Mars, is targeted for launch in December 2021.
Credits: NASA
Tony De La Rosa

Offline catdlr

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Asteroid Redirect Mission Robotic Trajectory and Crew Operations

NASA.gov Video

Published on Sep 14, 2016
This concept animation opens with a rendering of the mission's spacecraft trajectory, rendezvous, and approach to asteroid 2008 EV5. Although the mission's target asteroid won't officially be selected until a year before the robotic spacecraft is launched, 2008 EV5 is used as a reference for mission planning details. The animation concludes with the notional crew operations that will take place after the asteroid boulder is placed in lunar orbit.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qoqfSYZufGY?T=001

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Offline catdlr

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White House, NASA Discuss Asteroid Redirect Mission

NASA

Published on Sep 14, 2016
Officials from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and NASA held a live Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) discussion at the space agency’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. During the event on Wednesday, Sept. 14, OSTP’s Dr. John P. Holdren, NASA’s Administrator Charles Bolden and ARM Program Director Dr. Michele Gates, highlighted the mission’s scientific and technological benefits, how the mission will support NASA’s goal of sending humans to Mars in the 2030s, and how ARM will demonstrate technology relevant to defending Earth from potentially hazardous asteroids.

The beginning of the video is a repeat of the above post. Panel discussion starts at 3:34 in the following video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Ogty1C6LYw?t=001

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Offline catdlr

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Sept. 6, 2016
Asteroid Redirect Mission Virtual Industry Day

This event has concluded. The archived video is available here: http://connect.arc.nasa.gov/p5h32zqhtgi/

On Sept. 14, 2016, NASA hosted a live Asteroid Redirect Mission Virtual Industry Day at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The event was open to the public for virtual participation only, and followed the Sept. 6 release of the Asteroid Redirect Mission Umbrella for Partnerships (ARM-UP) Broad Agency Announcement (BAA), and its two appendices:

Appendix A: Hosted Payloads on Robotic Segment of ARM
Appendix B: Investigation Team Membership Call
The Industry Day provided an ARM status update, an introduction to the BAA and Appendices A and B, and also will included an overview of the mission's progress since the last Asteroid Redirect Mission Community Update in Oct. 2015. The virtual event was streamed live through Adobe Connect, and viewers were able to ask questions throughout the event.

The agenda below outlines specific topics that were addressed.

NASA Asteroid Redirect Mission Virtual Industry Day
Sept. 14, 2016, 12 p.m. - 2 p.m. EDT

Introduction - Cheryl Warner, NASA Office of Communications
Welcome to Goddard - Dave Mitchell, Director of Flight Projects, Goddard Space Flight Center   
ARM work at Goddard - Bo Naasz, ARM Capture Module Lead, Goddard Space Flight Center     
ARM Introduction and Current Mission Status - Michele Gates, ARM Program Director, NASA Headquarters   
Science Interest and Observation Status - Lindley Johnson, Planetary Defense Officer, NASA Headquarters
Solar Electric Propulsion in the Proving Ground - Jim Reuter, Space Technology Mission Directorate Deputy Associate Administrator for Programs   
ARM-UP BAA Overview - Michele Gates, ARM Program Director, NASA Headquarters
ARM-UP Appendix A, Hosted Payloads - Ron Ticker, ARM Deputy Program Director, NASA Headquarters   
ARM-UP Appendix B, Investigation Team - Dan Mazanek, ARM Mission Investigator, NASA Langley Research Center   
ARM Robotic Mission and JPL Spacecraft Bus RFP - Jeff Weiss, ARM Deputy Flight System Manager & Flight System System Engineer, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory   
 
Last Updated: Sept. 14, 2016
Editor: Erin Mahoney

Event Video Here: http://connect.arc.nasa.gov/p5h32zqhtgi/
« Last Edit: 09/19/2016 05:22 PM by catdlr »
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I understand that Congress wants part of the ARM report requested in the 2016 NASA Appropriations bill to compare the proposed SEP design with using a chemical tug to move the asteroid. If the spacecraft fly the same flight path they will have the same delta-v. However the ISPs will be very different. A chemical tug, having lower ISP, will require a larger quantity of propellant and bigger (= heavier) fuel tanks to move the ~20 tonne asteroid. The additional launch costs can be calculated from the extra mass. Congress may not understand rocket science (delta-v, engine ISP) but it does know money.

The first stages of launch vehicles are not designed to work in vacuum for months so an existing spacecraft would have to be an upper stage. Can an existing upper stage perform this task? Or would a made to measure spacecraft need developing? At what cost?

Could the larger chemical tug be launched on the same LV or would a bigger and more expensive rocket, such as a Delta IV, be needed? Or possibly several launches to fuel the spacecraft?

If Asteroid Redirect Mission is cancelled then its second stage the ARCM (Asteroid Redirect Crewed Mission) in 2026 must also be cancelled. This will result in the Block 1B SLS and Orion capsule booked for the ARCM mission being cancelled.

Planetary Defense - has any one calculated the cost of a say 100 tonne asteroid hitting New York or Los Angeles?

Offline KelvinZero

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I understand that Congress wants part of the ARM report requested in the 2016 NASA Appropriations bill to compare the proposed SEP design with using a chemical tug to move the asteroid.
...
The first stages of launch vehicles are not designed to work in vacuum for months so an existing spacecraft would have to be an upper stage. Can an existing upper stage perform this task? Or would a made to measure spacecraft need developing? At what cost?
Don't worry, they will no doubt drop the idea the second they realise this would advance technology that could demonstrate propellant depots. :P

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I understand that Congress wants part of the ARM report requested in the 2016 NASA Appropriations bill to compare the proposed SEP design with using a chemical tug to move the asteroid.

Seriously? Source?

Offline A_M_Swallow

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I understand that Congress wants part of the ARM report requested in the 2016 NASA Appropriations bill to compare the proposed SEP design with using a chemical tug to move the asteroid.

Seriously? Source?

There is nothing wrong with Congress asking NASA if there is a cheaper way to perform the asteroid mission. The report will just have to officially put in writing that using a chemical tug would be more expensive than using a SEP tug because multiple launches would be needed to get the extra propellant into space.

Here is the appropriate section:

"(c) Evaluation and report.—Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall—

(1) conduct an evaluation of—

(A) alternative approaches to the Asteroid Robotic Redirect Mission for demonstrating the technologies and capabilities needed for a human mission to Mars that would otherwise be demonstrated by the Asteroid Robotic Redirect Mission;

(B) the scientific and technical benefits of the alternatives approaches identified in subparagraph (A) compared to the Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission to future human exploration;

(C) the commercial benefits of the alternative approaches identified in subparagraph (A), including the impact on the development of domestic solar electric propulsion technology to bolster United States competitiveness in the global marketplace; and

(D) a comparison of the estimated costs of the alternative approaches identified in subparagraph (A); and

(2) submit to the appropriate Committees of Congress a report on the evaluation under paragraph (1), including any recommendations.
"

From 'S.3346 - National Aeronautics and Space Administration Transition Authorization Act of 2016' (draft)
https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/senate-bill/3346/text#toc-id1A901943EC6C4504B63D3E9BB125FA06

Offline whitelancer64

Question: was any hardware for ARM actually built?
 
I am specifically wondering about any SEP hardware.
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