Author Topic: Asteroid Redirect Mission to lay the technology foundations for deep space  (Read 41500 times)

Offline Rocket Science

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ARM is a worthy scientific/engineering mission, however it doesn't "need" Orion/SLS and tell the "ugly giant bags of mostly water" to stay home... ;D
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Offline QuantumG

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ARM is a worthy scientific/engineering mission, however it doesn't "need" Orion/SLS and tell the "ugly giant bags of mostly water" to stay home... ;D

A dedicated sample return mission would be great science.. of course, if ARM was coming out of the science budget it'd be funded much lower. Personally, I think redirecting the exploration budget to ARM is a great thing.. but also why it probably will never happen.
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Offline Paul451

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of course, if ARM was coming out of the science budget it'd be funded much lower.

ARM's being funded?

Offline A_M_Swallow

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of course, if ARM was coming out of the science budget it'd be funded much lower.

ARM's being funded?

On January 27, 2016 ARRM design studies were commissioned by JPL. The NASA webpage does not mention money.
https://www.nasa.gov/feature/companies-selected-to-provide-early-design-work-for-asteroid-redirect-robotic-mission

Offline RocketGoBoom

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ARM didn't start as just a way to find something to do with SLS. MAYBE that's why it got traction (unsure of that), but that has never been the actual justification for it.

Oh, agreed.  The Europa mission is very similar, but is finding a lot less resistance.  (Whether JPL can pull it off in the next 6-ish years with no bent metal yet is the only major question.). In both cases, ARM and Europa, there are scientifically worthy goals, but I don't know that either (especially ARM with a billion-dollar-plus price tag, just for the robotic part, yes?) would have survived the selection process and gained funding without being pulled forward by SLS.

Does ARM actually require SLS?

Is there something massive or heavy about it makes SLS the only viable launch vehicle?
Why not Delta Heavy or Falcon Heavy?
« Last Edit: 02/20/2016 09:31 PM by RocketGoBoom »

Offline sdsds

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Does ARM actually require SLS?

Is there something massive or heavy about it makes SLS the only viable launch vehicle?
Why not Delta Heavy or Falcon Heavy?

Are you asking about ARM or ARRM?
-- sdsds --

Offline Robotbeat

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Does ARM actually require SLS?

Is there something massive or heavy about it makes SLS the only viable launch vehicle?
Why not Delta Heavy or Falcon Heavy?

Are you asking about ARM or ARRM?
From context, clearly ARRM, i.e. the robotic portion of ARM.

And heck, you could do the crewed portion of ARM with Falcon Heavy if you wanted to, too.
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Offline Paul451

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In order to replicate the throw-capacity of SLS, you'd need to develop a dockable boost-stage. Ie, something you launch as a separate payload, which can dock with your separately launched main payload and then act as an upper-stage for the TLI or BEO burn. Similar to the common TMI Module from the Mars-DRA 5.0.¹

In this case, you'd want one that can launch as payload on most modern launchers (FH/Atlas/DIVH/Ariane/Vulcan/etc.) If you have such a launcher-agnostic, generic booster stage, you can use it to also do the manned portion of ARM.²

¹ Necessary because SLS can't perform either single-stack or dual-launch manned Mars missions.³ Which is weird since that's pretty much the entire only reason for a high $/kg heavy-lifter.

² You'd also want a mission-habitat-module with your long duration ECLSS, deep space comms, extra rad-shielding, etc. Essentially, a small DSH-type module. But a full DSH is being promoted for SLS/Orion missions anyway, including ARM.³

³ Which means both technologies are part of the intended SLS/Orion path already. But developing those two technologies renders SLS/Orion unnecessary.

Offline RocketGoBoom

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http://arstechnica.com/science/2016/02/former-nasa-chief-on-us-space-policy-no-vision-no-plan-no-budget/

The Republican chairman of the Science Committee, Lamar Smith of Texas, echoed those concerns in his comments, saying that under President Obama, NASA does not seem to be taking a serious approach to human exploration. The hearing comes at a critical time for NASA, now two months into the last year of President Obama’s second term and with a new administrator likely to replace Charles Bolden in 2017. Republicans in Congress have made it clear they do not favor the president’s plan to send astronauts to visit a fragment of an asteroid near the Moon and an eventual journey to Mars.

In fact, legislators appear to support returning to the Moon as a stepping stone en route to exploration deeper into the solar system. That was evident by the choice of witnesses for the hearing, including Griffin, who strongly called for a US-led international partnership to develop a permanent human presence on the Moon.


Offline redliox

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The ARM may have been delayed further, a year it looks if this article is right: http://spacenews.com/nasa-slips-schedule-of-asteroid-redirect-mission/  Furthermore the first few crewed flights may not have anything to do with asteroids either it seems.

I'd interpret this as the first direct sign ARM is on the path to cancellation.  I'd only wish for cancellation as a last resort if they don't revise the mission, namely to target the Martian moons instead.  While there's the "Key Decision Point B" coming up, everyone knows it will come down to the next President either amending or slashing it...so everyone better start hoping Hilary favors Obama's space plans because Trump surely won't (he already declared he favors fixing potholes over helping NASA).
"Let the trails lead where they may, I will follow."
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Offline jgoldader

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so everyone better start hoping Hilary favors Obama's space plans because Trump surely won't (he already declared he favors fixing potholes over helping NASA).

Oh, Lord, please don't get that started...
Recovering astronomer

Offline Blackstar

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http://www.spacepolicyonline.com/news/asteroid-redirect-mission-delayed-one-year

Asteroid Redirect Mission Delayed One Year

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 07-Mar-2016
Updated: 07-Mar-2016 11:52 PM

President Obama's Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) will not meet the 2025 date he set for the program in 2010.  ARM Program Director Michele Gates told a NASA Advisory Council (NAC) committee on March 2 that launch of the robotic portion of the mission is now expected in 2021 and the crew portion in 2026.  Both are one year slips from earlier projected dates.

President Obama announced on April 15, 2010 that the next destination for human space exploration will be sending astronauts to an asteroid as a step to eventually sending them to Mars.  The mission has evolved since then.  The current concept calls for a robotic spacecraft to be sent to an asteroid where it will pick up a boulder from its surface and move the boulder to an orbit around the Moon.  Astronauts aboard an Orion spacecraft will examine the boulder and retrieve a sample for return to Earth.

The President set 2025 as the date by which the asteroid mission should be achieved.   NASA divides the mission into the Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission (ARRM) and Asteroid Redirect Crew Mission (ARCM).  ARRM must be launched several years before the ARCM in order for the robotic spacecraft to reach the asteroid, observe it to determine the best place on its surface to pluck a boulder, and capture the boulder and move it to lunar orbit so it is there when the astronauts arrive.

Speaking to the NAC Human Exploration and Operations (HEO) Committee, Gates said that ARRM now will be launched in December 2021 and ARCM in December 2026.  A footnote to her chart says that the target dates are expected to continue to be "refined."   

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