Author Topic: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission  (Read 45452 times)

Offline Hop_David

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #60 on: 03/03/2014 07:05 PM »
Yeah, I'm really starting to feel that some people on this forum just hate the idea of exploring asteroids.. at all. I wonder if they've read any John S. Lewis, or otherwise understand the potential here.

John who?

If he doesn't subscribe to the Zubrin or Spudis doctrines, obviously some heretic.
« Last Edit: 03/03/2014 07:08 PM by Hop_David »

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #61 on: 03/03/2014 07:55 PM »
Yeah, I'm really starting to feel that some people on this forum just hate the idea of exploring asteroids.. at all. I wonder if they've read any John S. Lewis, or otherwise understand the potential here.

John who?

If he doesn't subscribe to the Zubrin or Spudis doctrines, obviously some heretic.

Ahhh.  So that's why this thread is pinned to the top of the section!  Anything else would be heresy?

Lotta people on this forum understand the potential of asteroids.   Most people, particularly policymakers, don't seem to understand that prioritizing tasks in space is crucial, and that easier things should be done first, so as to practice, practice, practice.
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline Robert Thompson

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #62 on: 03/04/2014 05:23 AM »
imho Bolden admits that the ARM does not or barely satisfies science, sample and earth defense returns. Its geopolitical/prestige returns are paltry, and barely meets the (ill-advised) BTDT mandate. There is no material ISRU return either. Because taxpayers are footing the bill, the geopolitical return of HSF to Any distant target must exceed the science, sample and earth defense return available by cheaper robotic means. Asteroid HSF targets that are too small to harm earth are too small to provide earth defense return, ruling out smaller than about 25 meters. Granted, you can push the Chelyabinsk angle that obviously it does not require ground impact to send 1200 to a hospital. Asteroid HSF targets that are too close to the sun, close to 1 AU, offer decreasing opportunity for ISRU of volatiles without increasing mass of equipment. In the domain of flags-and-footprints, what is the future compounding value of having been to a small body that humans do not have a purpose to return to? Or, what useful metric is there for the X ISRU returns / Y orbital distance justification to support Z quantity astronauts. HSF to an asteroid for sample return is practically baseless. You could shield/advertise the mission as "Science!!" if the geopolitical return was substantial enough, like with Apollo. On a recent TheSpaceShow Ric Tumlinson (DSI) had a broad view on the funding impact of Chelyabinsk. I tend to think of robotic precursors as one and the same with the sensory apparatus of evolving organisms, and the extension of this sphere of sensory human activity in no way truncates and in fact rather ensures the expansion of the sphere of economic human activity. They are silicon and titanium sensory stalks and mandibles to homo sapiens, in the same way that tin cans and inflatables will be exoskeleton/carapaces. One day, for suitably meaningful enough asteroid targets, HSF will happen. John S Lewis had 3 guest spots on TheSpaceShow. In one of them he mentioned his Mormon heritage and how that informed his views on human expansion. To take a stab geopolitical return greater than robotic science, sample, and earth defense, I'd say make it a target that possesses a Name that the citizens of another nation will recognize. imho

http://www.spacepolitics.com/2013/08/10/bolden-asteroid-redirect-mission-not-going-to-save-the-planet/
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/asteroidwatch/fastfacts.cfm
http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1955-BWB-2013-02-20.mp3
http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1783-BWB-2012-05-28.mp3
http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1495-BWB-2011-01-14.mp3
« Last Edit: 03/04/2014 05:57 AM by Hernalt »

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #63 on: 03/04/2014 06:01 AM »
why this thread is pinned to the top of the section!  Anything else would be heresy?

Lotta people on this forum understand the potential of asteroids.   Most people, particularly policymakers, don't seem to understand that prioritizing tasks in space is crucial, and that easier things should be done first, so as to practice, practice, practice.

When Obama announced his asteroid-then-Mars plan, to me the concept for visiting an asteroid was more of demonstration that we could venture out that far plus do something while we were there.  That the main goal was to demonstrate that we could operate part of the distance we had to go to get to Mars, which hopefully was paving the way for eventually traveling to Mars.

When the Asteroid Retrieval Mission (ARM) was announced, it didn't seem to address the need for learning how to operate at dramatically farther and farther distances.  Instead it was more oriented towards pushing the boundaries of what we knew about asteroids.  And in that regard there were likely better ways to do that than ARM.

If the goal is Mars, and that has been the explicit goal since the VSE, then we need to be focusing on increasing our ability to confidently and competently operate at increasingly farther distances from Earth.  Focusing too much on doing science at intermediate points distracts from that.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline KelvinZero

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #64 on: 03/04/2014 08:13 AM »
why this thread is pinned to the top of the section!  Anything else would be heresy?

Lotta people on this forum understand the potential of asteroids.   Most people, particularly policymakers, don't seem to understand that prioritizing tasks in space is crucial, and that easier things should be done first, so as to practice, practice, practice.

When Obama announced his asteroid-then-Mars plan, to me the concept for visiting an asteroid was more of demonstration that we could venture out that far plus do something while we were there.  That the main goal was to demonstrate that we could operate part of the distance we had to go to get to Mars, which hopefully was paving the way for eventually traveling to Mars.

When the Asteroid Retrieval Mission (ARM) was announced, it didn't seem to address the need for learning how to operate at dramatically farther and farther distances.  Instead it was more oriented towards pushing the boundaries of what we knew about asteroids.  And in that regard there were likely better ways to do that than ARM.

If the goal is Mars, and that has been the explicit goal since the VSE, then we need to be focusing on increasing our ability to confidently and competently operate at increasingly farther distances from Earth.  Focusing too much on doing science at intermediate points distracts from that.

This probably isn't something anyone would dispute, but of course we won't demonstrate we can venture out a long way by venturing out a long way, except perhaps in the sense of demonstrating it to youtube viewers with very short attention spans. It is HSF so you pretty much have to demonstrate beyond reasonable doubt before you venture out.

I doubt we can build up enough confidence just testing equipment on the ground so I assume there will be earlier manned or unmanned launches and in-space testing involved in such a mission. I think this means it is also not fair to compare a big year long mission with a small one puttering around around cislunar space without enumerating the puttering around in cislunar space that will happen on the path to the big exciting mission.

This is something I would like to see laid out. What actually would be the steps/missions between here and having a piece of tested hardware we could trust for a yearlong BEO mission.


Offline Robert Thompson

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #65 on: 03/04/2014 11:38 AM »
Two advertized rationales for HSF asteroid is to prove Orion in deep space, and because Obama uttered so. Two advertized difficulties for HSF asteroid is little to no abort modes, and no broad support in NASA or Congress. I would add two subordinate difficulties in that HSF asteroid gains no geopolitical return among space nations who are only at the capability of partnering in cis-lunar missions, and gains no public relations return among U.S. voters/taxpayers who have ultra low information on NASA and space. These factors operate in the presence of new space players who are developing small/nano sat capabilities explicitly to observe, categorize and go to asteroids.

IMHO Orion could be proven in deep space, and retain full abort modes, by creative use of the extended cis-lunar environment. Do a 45 day mission with various orbits and eccentricities around cis-lunar space. They remain in practical visual contact with earth. Their relevance to people on earth remains at a point perhaps slightly higher than ISS passes. Even if amateurs with telescopes cannot see them, someone with an app can see where they are and point, in a different direction, over the course of days or weeks. IHMO

I'd Love to see someone put up a fight that defends the audacity and virtue of an HSF asteroid mission across every metric. I imagine that if Congress does more chop-licking over the likely unattainable Mars 2021, that will churn the options for HSF asteroid. All conversation and debate is good.

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #66 on: 03/04/2014 09:52 PM »
Gaining more information on and experience with asteroids to help with deflection, detection, and possible utilization/exploitation. It's not "just because Obama said so."
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

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Offline Robert Thompson

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #67 on: 03/05/2014 11:03 AM »
A mandate from a POTUS is A rationale. I touched on obvious/popular rationales in #62. I haven't heard of detection as a rationale for HSF asteroid. Detection is most cheaply done by reception of photons, not stubbing of toes, and so you can detect smaller diameter bodies and lower albedos by placing larger apertures closer to the sun, facing outward and achieving lower angles of incidence. Sentinel will have 11 square degrees of view always on. PRI and DSI are developing asteroid detection hardware that will eventually go to asteroids. I cannot devise a scenario where HSF asteroid adds to detection, but I'm all ears. Characterization, maybe, by HSF intelligent sample return, but I'd think that remote / tele-operated sample return could do that cheaper/faster. Remotes can do GRAIL type detection of moments and mascons (I assume a sensitivity that may not exist). Remote sensing can observe Yarkovsky, any venting dv, other things. I went looking for human FOV and found overlapping sensitivity like on LRO and MRO:
http://www.technologyreview.com/view/423575/augmented-reality-interface-exploits-human-nervous-system/

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #68 on: 03/05/2014 08:04 PM »
Two advertized rationales for HSF asteroid is to prove Orion in deep space, and because Obama uttered so. Two advertized difficulties for HSF asteroid is little to no abort modes, and no broad support in NASA or Congress. I would add two subordinate difficulties in that HSF asteroid gains no geopolitical return among space nations who are only at the capability of partnering in cis-lunar missions, and gains no public relations return among U.S. voters/taxpayers who have ultra low information on NASA and space. These factors operate in the presence of new space players...

Who are not only developing nano-sats, but are also developing rockets with 53 ton throw weights.

Quote
I'd Love to see someone put up a fight that defends the audacity and virtue of an HSF asteroid mission across every metric.

And that does not seem likely to happen.  Why, I know not.

All in all yours was a pretty darn good post, and a fairly eloquent and brief summary of the only two rationales for the ARM.  This mission cannot be defended on a pragmatic basis, nor on a risk basis.

Orion could certainly be proven on a lengthy mission in cis-lunar, and somewhat beyond as you sketch out.  The abort modes would be tricky if the hypothetical accident happened on the way out, but even so, the proximity would have to argue for a less risky shakedown cruise than the yearlong mission, where the hypothetical accident would also have to be considered on the way out.
« Last Edit: 03/05/2014 08:05 PM by JohnFornaro »
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline Hop_David

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #69 on: 03/05/2014 08:34 PM »
imho Bolden admits that the ARM does not or barely satisfies science, sample and earth defense returns.

Science? Looking for extra terrestrial lichens and bacteria? Building models of planetary formation?

If this is the sole reason for space exploration, HSF isn't justified.

... and earth defense returns.

The Keck vehicle wouldn't be much good for deflecting dino-killers.  But it could deflect city killers. And potential city killing rocks are about a million times more common than dino killers.

The only justification for HSF, in my opinion, is breaking our boundaries and bringing the solar system's resources and real estate within our grasp. If that's not the goal, HSF is an expensive sideshow and a waste of taxpayer money.

A Keck style SEP vehicle would bring us closer to asteroid resource exploitation. The Keck paper says 2.6 billion dollars, about half of that is design and development. Either Planetary Resources or Deep Space Industries would be hard pressed to come up with R&D budgets in the billions. It would benefit them if NASA helped developed this technology. Just as NASA's R&D was a huge help to Bigelow and Musk.

"But! But! A $2.6 billion vehicle costs too much!" wail the Moon Firsters. "There won't be any money left to establish our 100 billion dollar lunar colony!" The budget for an ARM mission would be a pittance compared to establishing a lunar mine. It's like saying buying a bicycle will ruin our chances for buying a new car.






Offline Hop_David

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #70 on: 03/05/2014 08:47 PM »
I haven't heard of detection as a rationale for HSF asteroid.

The ARM proposal is more than HSF. It calls for development of a robotic SEP retrieval vehicle as described in the Keck report.

NASA Development of such a vehicle would save Planetary Resources about 1.3 billion dollars.

With an extra 1.3 billion dollars, PR could build a few more Arkyd probes.

Planetary Resources hopes to get their Arkyds down to a million dollars apiece.

I guess a 1300 extra orbital telescopes wouldn't do much for detection.
« Last Edit: 03/05/2014 08:49 PM by Hop_David »

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #71 on: 03/06/2014 01:04 AM »
Of course, the child (NASA) can't even afford to buy a bicycle, much less a car.  Nor is there a need for that ARM bicycle, but for one man's misguided assertion.

The sooner the totality of why bother with attempting to create a new off-planet economy is discussed, the better off the human race and all life on Earth will be.

The only alternative is to crowd the planet even further, and bemoan the fact that the nest is dirty.
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline mdatb

Yeah, I'm really starting to feel that some people on this forum just hate the idea of exploring asteroids.. at all. I wonder if they've read any John S. Lewis, or otherwise understand the potential here.

John who?

If he doesn't subscribe to the Zubrin or Spudis doctrines, obviously some heretic.
:o The only place humans can go to is the moon or mars! Asteroids are heresy >:(!

In all seriousness, most where-to-go HSF debates are about the Moon and Mars.

Offline TomH

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Re: NASA managers evaluate yearlong deep space asteroid mission
« Reply #73 on: 06/17/2016 02:27 AM »
HO3 is about 9M mi at its closest. Taking a Bigelow hab with Orion to this object makes a lot more sense than hauling back a VW sized rock or going all the way to the asteroid belt.

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