Author Topic: Resource Prospector  (Read 34405 times)

Offline Astro_Zach

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Resource Prospector
« on: 05/24/2015 08:40 PM »
In a recent NASA animation, the Falcon 9 is shown to launch a mission to the moon called "Resource Prospector."

Quote
Resource Prospector (RP) is an in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) technology demonstration mission which will test extraction of oxygen, water and other volatiles from lunar soil (regolith). It will also measure mineralogical content such as silicon and light metals, like aluminum and titanium, from lunar regolith. Expanding human presence beyond low-Earth orbit to asteroids and Mars will require the maximum possible use of local materials, so-called in-situ resources, and the moon presents a unique destination to conduct robotic investigations that advance ISRU capabilities, as well as providing significant exploration and science value

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMXWsiaEK6Q&feature=youtu.be
« Last Edit: 05/24/2015 08:41 PM by Astro_Zach »
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Offline docmordrid

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #1 on: 05/24/2015 08:45 PM »
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Offline sanman

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #2 on: 05/24/2015 09:16 PM »
What would be the mission lifespan?

Offline Mr. Scott

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #3 on: 05/24/2015 09:31 PM »
Neat.

Mission has already been done before (multiple times)!  Why?  An Apollo Mission Science Report concluded that there is no water on the moon.  It's more fun to bring your own anyway.  Nobody is going to drink 4.6 billion year old water.
« Last Edit: 06/10/2015 02:14 AM by Mr. Scott »

Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #4 on: 05/24/2015 09:38 PM »
Mission has already been done before (multiple times)!  Why?

Seriously, someone did an ISRU pathfinder mission on the moon already?

Offline Astro_Zach

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #5 on: 05/24/2015 09:39 PM »
What would be the mission lifespan?

Found these two PDFs.

The first one shows a nominal mission duration of what appears to be 40 hours

Looks like they're targeting 2018

http://sservi.nasa.gov/articles/nasa-looking-to-mine-water-on-the-moon-and-mars/

I got 2020 http://www.nasa.gov/resource-prospector
« Last Edit: 05/24/2015 09:43 PM by Astro_Zach »
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Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #6 on: 05/24/2015 09:42 PM »
What would be the mission lifespan?
Last I read on it was lifespan of a few days, don't think rover is designed to survive lunar night.

I would hope they choose one of the XPrize lunar landers.

Offline Mr. Scott

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #7 on: 05/24/2015 09:43 PM »
Lunokhod 1 (322 days / 6.5 miles):
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunokhod_1


Lunokhod 2 (4 months / 23 miles)
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunokhod_2

« Last Edit: 05/24/2015 09:46 PM by Mr. Scott »

Offline symbios

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #8 on: 05/24/2015 10:07 PM »
Well, both where Russian and it was 45 YEARS ago, you would think that something has happened to upgrade the instruments during that time...?  ::)

Even if both did not apply, getting a sample from another area might be a reason by itself?
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Online JBF

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #9 on: 05/24/2015 10:08 PM »
Lunokhod 1 (322 days / 6.5 miles):
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunokhod_1


Lunokhod 2 (4 months / 23 miles)
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunokhod_2

Yes but since then several probes including Chandrayaan-1 and LCROSS have indicated that there is a good chance for water.
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Online Semmel

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #10 on: 05/24/2015 11:35 PM »
Lunar night is difficult because most batteries must be warm in order to be charged. They dont operate at lunar night type of temperatures. In order to charge a battery when the solar panels see light, you have to start the heater first. That can be done by directly powering the heater from the solar panels before putting aside some energy that charges.

See here for a table of different battery types and their operation temperature:
http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/whats_the_best_battery
-40 deg C is the lowest in that list. The moon is far colder when dark. Surviving is tricky and costs mass which reduces the science payload.

PS: Exciting nevertheless!

Offline CuddlyRocket

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #11 on: 05/25/2015 07:45 PM »
Nobody is going to drink 4.6 billion year old water anyways.
Most water on Earth is older than that!

Offline Ludus

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #12 on: 05/29/2015 04:15 AM »
Nobody is going to drink 4.6 billion year old water anyways.
Most water on Earth is older than that!

Yep. The hydrogen in it is 13.8 billion years old.

Offline simonbp

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #13 on: 05/30/2015 05:04 AM »
Most of it, but a small fraction would have been produced in fusion processes in Pop 3 & 2 stars, especially in r-process reactions that created very short-lived radionucleotides.

The oxygen in the water was probably made in a few different Pop 2 stars, as Pop 3 stars really didn't get into the CNO cycle.

Offline manboy

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #14 on: 05/30/2015 09:20 AM »
In a recent NASA animation, the Falcon 9 is shown to launch a mission to the moon called "Resource Prospector."

Quote
Resource Prospector (RP) is an in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) technology demonstration mission which will test extraction of oxygen, water and other volatiles from lunar soil (regolith). It will also measure mineralogical content such as silicon and light metals, like aluminum and titanium, from lunar regolith. Expanding human presence beyond low-Earth orbit to asteroids and Mars will require the maximum possible use of local materials, so-called in-situ resources, and the moon presents a unique destination to conduct robotic investigations that advance ISRU capabilities, as well as providing significant exploration and science value
Crazy to think that this would be the first American mission to land on the moon in over 40 years.
« Last Edit: 05/30/2015 09:22 AM by manboy »
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Offline CuddlyRocket

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #15 on: 05/31/2015 07:19 PM »
Nobody is going to drink 4.6 billion year old water anyways.
Most water on Earth is older than that!

Yep. The hydrogen in it is 13.8 billion years old.
Most of it, but a small fraction would have been produced in fusion processes in Pop 3 & 2 stars, especially in r-process reactions that created very short-lived radionucleotides.

The oxygen in the water was probably made in a few different Pop 2 stars, as Pop 3 stars really didn't get into the CNO cycle.

Yes, the vast majority of the hydrogen and oxygen in the solar system predates its formation; but so do most of the water molecules themselves.

But the main point is that if we are going to explore and colonise the solar system the people doing it will have to be a whole lot less squeamish about recycling than many give the impression of being!

Offline docmordrid

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #16 on: 06/01/2015 08:16 AM »
Nobody is going to drink 4.6 billion year old water anyways.
Most water on Earth is older than that!

Yep. The hydrogen in it is 13.8 billion years old.
Most of it, but a small fraction would have been produced in fusion processes in Pop 3 & 2 stars, especially in r-process reactions that created very short-lived radionucleotides.

The oxygen in the water was probably made in a few different Pop 2 stars, as Pop 3 stars really didn't get into the CNO cycle.

Yes, the vast majority of the hydrogen and oxygen in the solar system predates its formation; but so do most of the water molecules themselves.

But the main point is that if we are going to explore and colonise the solar system the people doing it will have to be a whole lot less squeamish about recycling than many give the impression of being!

Orange County California is already doing 'toilet to tap.'

http://www.cnn.com/2014/05/01/world/from-toilet-to-tap-water/
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Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #17 on: 08/11/2015 01:46 AM »
Recent update on RP


The deck here : http://lsaworkshops.com/_assets/pdf/wednesday_section/Colaprete_LSA_2015_RP_Overview.pptx

"We are still in Phase A, performance goal is to pass SRR ( system requirements review ) this year. Launch target 2020"

Presentation links from : http://lsaworkshops.com/program/lsa-5-abstracts-and-presentations#TB_inline?inlineId=docs_O_Konek;height=700&width=750&modal=1

EDIT: i have no clue why this is in SpaceX section ? They are pretty far from locking in the launch vehicle.

Also, its interesting that HEOMD lists completing SRR for this in FY2014 and FY2015 targets, and then again in FY2016

In contrast, Mars 2020 was also scheduled for FY2014 SRR, and : SRR/MDR completed  29  October 2014, Approved  for  Phase  B  by  Agency  Program  Management  Council  on  20  May  2015. PDR-1 scheduled for September 2015.
« Last Edit: 08/11/2015 02:01 AM by savuporo »
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Offline high road

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #18 on: 08/11/2015 06:33 AM »
Neat.

Mission has already been done before (multiple times)!  Why?  An Apollo Mission Science Report concluded that there is no water on the moon.  It's more fun to bring your own anyway.  Nobody is going to drink 4.6 billion year old water.

Doesn't that usually work the other way around? The longer mineral water spends in the ground, the more 'pristine' it's supposed to be. Whereas every drop in the ocean is essentially dinosaur pee, every drop of tap water is recycled waste water, and astronauts drink their own sweat and urine. Chemically speaking, there's little difference between all that.

To be clear: so the idea here is to look for hydrogen beneath the top layer of the polar regions, without having to go into the permanently shaded craters. Is that correct?

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #19 on: 08/12/2015 10:38 PM »
This is not a real mission. It's a fuzzy, ill-defined, make work project. NASA sorta penciled it in years ago and said that they would pay for the rocket and the instruments, but another partner would have to pay for the lander and rover. Nobody really stepped up to do that, and NASA did not try too hard, and so it's been in stasis forever.

My suspicion is that this is primarily a budget thing. HEOMD has people that do not have specific project assignments, but it still has to pay their salaries, so they assign them to this and call it a project. But there's no money for procurement or hiring contractors or doing anything like that.

You should see the way this is treated at the annual Lunar Exploration Analysis Group meetings--the lunar scientists there don't take it seriously.

Offline a_langwich

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #20 on: 08/13/2015 12:02 AM »
This is not a real mission. It's a fuzzy, ill-defined, make work project. NASA sorta penciled it in years ago and said that they would pay for the rocket and the instruments, but another partner would have to pay for the lander and rover. Nobody really stepped up to do that, and NASA did not try too hard, and so it's been in stasis forever.

My suspicion is that this is primarily a budget thing. HEOMD has people that do not have specific project assignments, but it still has to pay their salaries, so they assign them to this and call it a project. But there's no money for procurement or hiring contractors or doing anything like that.

You should see the way this is treated at the annual Lunar Exploration Analysis Group meetings--the lunar scientists there don't take it seriously.

Given the disdain some scientists have for engineering projects, I would not be surprised.  (See, for example, the dismay and disdain mentioned on various websites for the ISRU project included on the Mars 2020 rover.)  Maybe part of the tension is like that between archeologists and builders.

How is Lunar Prospector ill-defined?

The back-burner status is probably related to the current desire to maximize exploration relevance to Mars and minimize previous exploration plans to stop off at the moon's surface.

As far as landers go, you would think NASA or JPL would consider an unmanned lunar lander to be laughably easy in comparison to Mars landers or outer planet orbiters, in terms of generous mass budget, lower deltaVs, short transit times, strong communication signals, and strong availability of solar power.

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #21 on: 08/13/2015 03:18 AM »
yeah that's what I was pointing at above too. it's in perpetual "SRR this fiscal year" mode without ever having a shot of getting to any serious non-advocate review phase.

However, work is being put in, and give it a decade or two and a serious mission proposal for SMD might materialize out of this
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Offline a_langwich

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #22 on: 08/13/2015 05:54 AM »
yeah that's what I was pointing at above too. it's in perpetual "SRR this fiscal year" mode without ever having a shot of getting to any serious non-advocate review phase.

However, work is being put in, and give it a decade or two and a serious mission proposal for SMD might materialize out of this

Hopefully not for SMD, but through HEOMD.  It's an exploration mission, not a science mission.  Perhaps that's another reason it doesn't get any love.

Offline Warren Platts

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #23 on: 08/13/2015 10:17 AM »
This is not a real mission.


In your opinion...

My suspicion is that this is primarily a budget thing. HEOMD has people that do not have specific project assignments, but it still has to pay their salaries, so they assign them to this and call it a project.

Citation needed.

You should see the way this is treated at the annual Lunar Exploration Analysis Group meetings--the lunar scientists there don't take it seriously.

Fortunately, LEAG does not have a monopoly on Lunar science within the USA nor anywhere else. It is but one faction among many.

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Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #24 on: 08/13/2015 02:29 PM »
This is not a real mission.


In your opinion...

Objectively, real missions pass a series of formal reviews, starting with SRR, let their major construction contracts and lock in their launch vehicle slots.
RP is 'scheduled' for 2020 just as the next Mars rover is, so it should be clearing these milestones almost in a lockstep - and as any observer can confirm, this is not happening.
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Offline Blackstar

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #25 on: 08/13/2015 06:55 PM »
Given the disdain some scientists have for engineering projects, I would not be surprised.

You misunderstand--they don't think it is a real mission. If they thought it was a real mission they would hop on board and propose some of their own instruments for it. And lunar scientists are interested in the lunar volatiles. They'd love to get their instruments into that stuff. When NASA decided to do LRO the scientists jumped onboard. They'll hitch their wagon to any horse that comes along.

It's just that this thing has been bopping around forever in programmatic purgatory. You'd have a hard time finding information on it because they never really publish anything and they don't issue regular reports. But for awhile they apparently had the Canadians onboard to develop a rover and then that fell apart. So now what they have is a lunar mission with a theoretical rocket purchase sometime in the future, no lander or rover, and a poorly-funded instrument development program. It's not real.

Offline Robert Thompson

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #26 on: 08/14/2015 06:40 AM »
Status of RESOLVE?

Offline Warren Platts

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #27 on: 08/14/2015 01:07 PM »
This month they'll be doing a full 3 day, real-time simulation of the mission, where guys at KSC are controlling a prototype rover and RESOLVE package at JSC:

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Multi_Use_Firing_Room_4_used_for_Resource_Prospector_Mission_Simulation_999.html

As for the rover, I heard the plan is they're going to do it "in-house", probably by JSC--that's where the ISRU guys are based. Ames (Colaprete is the PI) is doing the science--and if Tony Colaprete is not a bona fide lunar scientist, then nobody is....

As for the lander, if MoonEx can get their act together, they will probably get the contract.

As for rockets, there are lots of options--doesn't have to be SpaceX. It's probably small enough it could be launched as a secondary payload. (Yes, I know that primary payload operators tend to get concerned about secondary payloads containing lots of rocket fuel...)

As for LEAG, I don't understand their gripe, as it doesn't make any sense. The entire mission was designed with LEAG recommendations in mind. Sounds like sour grapes to me. No doubt many LEAG "lunar scientists" have already informally proposed their own instruments, but they have not been allowed onboard. However, if they can't get their pet instruments on board, that's mainly because it'll be a shoestring mission at best--this is no billion dollar MSL-sized project--and there simply isn't room. I myself think they should incorporate an XRF detector that could quantify heavy metal deposits, but it ain't gonna happen. Should I think that it's not a "real mission" because of that? I don't think so. Just because a mission isn't costing a billion bucks and is not being built on an accelerated schedule, that does not logically entail that it is not a "real mission". We shouldn't let the best be the enemy of the better.

As for updates, here's a recent presentation by Dr. Colaprete himself:



Actually, since the KSC involvement is coming out of the Swamp Works, I think Jim, the Night Gator, would know about as much as anyone about what's going on. Perhaps, if he sees this, he could share some knowledge.
« Last Edit: 08/14/2015 01:18 PM by Warren Platts »
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Offline turbopumpfeedback2

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #28 on: 09/15/2015 06:44 PM »
Well, I am personally very much excited about the RESOLVE  mission.

I have two sort of intuitive reasons to expect that it will be done on schedule.

The first reason is that A. Colaprete is on the team. I am quite impressed with the guy, he does not seem like a person that would waste time on nonsense. I mean, he made a first conclusive evidence of significant amount of water on the moon with a (cheap) 80m mission. 

Second. If there is a significant amount of usable water on the poles this may be quite significant. Just think: reusable lunar lander powered by the fuel from the moon.

This link hasn't been posted on this thread
www.airspacemag.com/daily-planet/prospecting-moons-poles-180952182/?no-istwww.

The most important thing that I find in this article is that it claims that money for the project has been secured. Claims launch date is in 2019.

« Last Edit: 09/15/2015 06:55 PM by turbopumpfeedback2 »

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #29 on: 09/15/2015 06:57 PM »
The most important thing that I find in this article is that it claims that money for the project has been secured. Claims launch date is in 2019.
Both of these claims are outdated and wrong ( the article is over a year old, too )
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Offline turbopumpfeedback2

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #30 on: 09/15/2015 07:21 PM »
The most important thing that I find in this article is that it claims that money for the project has been secured. Claims launch date is in 2019.
Both of these claims are outdated and wrong ( the article is over a year old, too )

OK, I am a bit new in following a mission development in detail. What in your opinion would be the critical milestone to be passed so that mission looks certain (in a sense of allocation of budget, nasa design reviews etc)?
« Last Edit: 09/15/2015 07:22 PM by turbopumpfeedback2 »

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #31 on: 09/15/2015 07:30 PM »
The most important thing that I find in this article is that it claims that money for the project has been secured. Claims launch date is in 2019.
Both of these claims are outdated and wrong ( the article is over a year old, too )

OK, I am a bit new in following a mission development in detail. What in your opinion would be the critical milestone to be passed so that mission looks certain (in a sense of allocation of budget, nasa design reviews etc)?

If you read up in this thread, you'll find that the team goal for this year is to pass a System Requirements Review, which would officially move the project into Phase B of development.
However, this has been the goal for last couple of years now, and last time i heard, Colaprete said something about 'politics' being the blocker in an open forum.
« Last Edit: 09/15/2015 07:31 PM by savuporo »
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Offline turbopumpfeedback2

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #32 on: 09/15/2015 08:21 PM »
... Colaprete said something about 'politics' being the blocker in an open forum.

Oh no, this sounds really bad ... It really may be a long time before we see this mission fly.

Is there a video of this forum on youtube?
« Last Edit: 09/15/2015 08:51 PM by turbopumpfeedback2 »

Online ThereIWas3

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #33 on: 09/21/2015 02:38 PM »
Another article of, I think, the same thing.  With pictures.  They talk about partnering with JAXA for the lander.   SpaceX F9 is mentioned as a possible launcher.

NASA Tests Lunar Rover Prototype with Eye Toward Flying Real Thing

Since NASA isn't doing anything real towards going to Mars, if they supported projects like this at least they would be seen to be doing something involving exploration toward that end.   And it's relatively cheap.
« Last Edit: 09/21/2015 08:30 PM by ThereIWas3 »
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Offline Blackstar

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #34 on: 10/05/2015 08:45 PM »
Anybody interested in finding out more about this program should attend this meeting:

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #35 on: 10/09/2015 05:12 PM »
The agenda for the LEAG meeting is up. Lots of different things going on, including discussions of ISRU.

http://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/leag2015/pdf/program.pdf


Offline Blackstar

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #36 on: 10/21/2015 06:31 PM »
Lots of interesting discussions at LEAG about this proposed mission. I assume that you guys have all been monitoring them.

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #37 on: 10/21/2015 07:00 PM »
Lots of interesting discussions at LEAG about this proposed mission. I assume that you guys have all been monitoring them.
No we havent, some coverage would be awesome ;)
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Offline Warren Platts

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #38 on: 10/21/2015 07:27 PM »
Lots of interesting discussions at LEAG about this proposed mission. I assume that you guys have all been monitoring them.

At every lunar conference, there are lots of interesting discussions about this proposed mission. The question is, is there any new information indicating that it's really going to happen?
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Offline turbopumpfeedback2

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #39 on: 11/17/2015 08:00 PM »
Presentation by Colaprete in LEAG meeting:

http://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/leag2015/presentations/Wednesday/Colaprete_RP_Goals_Measurements.pdf

Interestingly, he mentions the usage of lunar water to produce fuel on the surface of the moon and then send it using reusable lander to Lunar orbit/Lagrangian points to help mission to the Mars, slides 4 and 6.
« Last Edit: 11/17/2015 08:35 PM by turbopumpfeedback2 »

Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #40 on: 11/19/2015 06:14 AM »
Very nice presentation, but has there been any progress towards actually starting the mission, or is it still in the concept/risk reduction without building real hardware phase?

Offline GClark

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #41 on: 11/19/2015 01:20 PM »
More like the 'Begging For A Sponsor and Money' phase.  They've been pitching this thing to anyone who will listen and nobody's taken them up yet.

I've been reading these presentations on Prospector for a while now and I agree with what Blackstar up thread.  AFAICT it doesn't address any compelling science for SMD and HEOMD ain't going to the Lunar surface anytime soon.

Offline KelvinZero

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #42 on: 11/19/2015 10:47 PM »
More like the 'Begging For A Sponsor and Money' phase.  They've been pitching this thing to anyone who will listen and nobody's taken them up yet.

I've been reading these presentations on Prospector for a while now and I agree with what Blackstar up thread.  AFAICT it doesn't address any compelling science for SMD and HEOMD ain't going to the Lunar surface anytime soon.
https://www.nasa.gov/directorates/heo/about.html
http://science.nasa.gov/about-us/

That also supports one of my paranoid fanboy rants. Precursors just fall through the gap between planetary science and HSF. Planetary science is not interested in human requirements in space. The HSF BEO budget won't go anywhere near ISRU unless it can place an SLS launch and an Orion mission on the critical path.

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #43 on: 11/20/2015 12:00 AM »
{snip}
That also supports one of my paranoid fanboy rants. Precursors just fall through the gap between planetary science and HSF. Planetary science is not interested in human requirements in space. The HSF BEO budget won't go anywhere near ISRU unless it can place an SLS launch and an Orion mission on the critical path.

The Prospector Mission can be launched on a current medium sized launch vehicle. However to produce sufficient oxygen to support a Moon Base and LOX for ascent stages will require a large ISRU plant and some heavy mining equipment. If the set plus a lander goes over 53 tonnes then only an SLS can launch them to LEO.

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #44 on: 04/01/2016 02:15 AM »
More like the 'Begging For A Sponsor and Money' phase.  They've been pitching this thing to anyone who will listen and nobody's taken them up yet.

https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/files/Status-of-AES-tagged.pdf

MAFOR FY16 MILESTONES
Apr 2016  Resource Prospector : Complete lunar lander study with Taiwan

Apparently Colapretegave a presentation at LPSC2016 on the status, would be interesting to hear what he said

http://www.planetary.brown.edu/html_pages/micro57program.htm

Tony Colaprete: Resource Prospector: Overview and Current Status.
Jen Heldmann: Resource Prospector: Science Goals & Implementation.
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Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #45 on: 04/01/2016 01:05 PM »
On the HEOMD report it says later (p. 26):

Apr 2016  Resource Prospector : Complete lunar lander study with Taiwan

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #46 on: 06/01/2016 02:41 PM »
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Offline Phil Stooke

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #47 on: 06/01/2016 02:49 PM »
Or, just making progress and hoping for the best?

Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #48 on: 06/05/2016 05:21 AM »
There is a 4 article on Resource Prospector in the current edition of Room magazine. The gist is that their main achievement is having the RP15 earth prototype to test what they can put on the actual spacecraft. They do not intend to develop a lander, I think it said that they intended to procure one from the commercial sector (GLXP winners?). Their estimated price is $250 mil without the launch vehicle with a launch date of 2021. They are using COTS part: the battery comes from Robonaut, most of the sensors were COTS used for LCROSS and the UV spectrometer also with LADEE. They will not use RAD hard electronics because they do not intend the mission to last long, only achieve limited goals in limited time. The general gist I got was that it is a LCROSS followup with similar philosophy, albeit different goals. The other feeling I got was that they were hoping for money and a ride to the moon to materialize. My sense is that the project will probably scrape resources for HEOMD and SMD to keep going, as in some unspent money some fiscal year diverted there or helping test a control center that needs a mission to test to see if the renovation worked, though both these directorates already have side missions with launches to send resources (e.g. STPSat-2 payloads, EM-1 cubesats). It's best chance IMO, and if anyone else has insider info please share, is as a secondary payload on EM-2. Otherwise it might just languish on the back burner until its people retire

Offline Space Core

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #49 on: 07/19/2016 05:51 PM »
"NASA orders lunar lander from Taiwan"

http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/front/archives/2016/07/19/2003651332

tl;dr  Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology will build a lander for Resource Prospector to the sum of ~$47 million.  Expected to be completed by 2018 and launch in the early 2020s, if mission is approved.  Not much more in details beyond what's already been stated in this thread.

Edit: Found another article, this one stating the mass of the lander at 3.7 metric tons.

Apologies in advance, it's Yahoo! News.  You'll be fine, so long as you don't read the comments.  /RaidersOfTheLostArk
https://www.yahoo.com/tech/taiwan-lunar-lander-nasa-moon-mining-mission-114229535.html
« Last Edit: 07/19/2016 06:09 PM by Space Core »

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #50 on: 11/01/2016 09:54 PM »
Rubbing some salt in for kicks.
Quote
Green shows list of upcoming international lunar missions. He's having conversations w/Russia, S Korea others on how NASA can participate.
https://twitter.com/SpcPlcyOnline/status/793514212098203648

Notice the wishful 2020 date for Resource Prospector ?

Lets take a look :
https://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/20160009272.pdf
FY21/22 launch at best. SRR has been pushed year by year for last 3 years or so.



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Offline Phil Stooke

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #51 on: 11/07/2016 08:04 PM »
"SRR has been pushed year by year for last 3 years or so."

Although iterations of it are tied to particular dates (of necessity, so the illumination and Earth comm can be modelled accurately for any given scenario), it is still a concept being explored for a future flight.  It's not like a mission in active development which is being delayed due to technical or budgetary problems.  Eventually the concept may be taken up - it is important, and will be more so if the Moon occupies a larger role in the future than it has for NASA in the last few years. 

 I have followed the reports from LEAG, LPSC etc. for the last 5 years on this, and the scenarios of mission ops and the software needed to plan ops are becoming more mature all the time.  That's where the progress is, real progress.  When the stars align it will be ready to go. 

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #52 on: 11/11/2016 06:28 AM »
Notice the wishful 2020 date for Resource Prospector ?

Lets take a look :
https://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/20160009272.pdf
FY21/22 launch at best. SRR has been pushed year by year for last 3 years or so.

FY21 begins in October 2020, so 2020 would be the earliest they could launch.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #53 on: 11/22/2016 04:33 PM »
Could Moon express MX1e with its 10kg science payload be capable of determining ice content of Lunar craters.

Offline Phil Stooke

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #54 on: 11/27/2016 07:11 PM »
The first MoonEx mission is thought to be to middle latitudes, not a pole.  But a small vehicle like that might be able to carry a small radar sounder, and a few hops might help locate some ice (the goal is to measure the horizontal and vertical distributiuon of ice in the regolith).  So someone needs to buy space on a future lander to do exactly that (i.e a client of MoonEx, not MoonEx itself).

Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #55 on: 01/13/2017 04:26 PM »
An article on Resource Prospector has appeared online. Does not say much:

Now Space article


Edit/Lar: Long link!
« Last Edit: 01/18/2017 08:49 PM by Lar »

Offline turbopumpfeedback2

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #56 on: 01/13/2017 08:49 PM »
Talk by Daniel Andrews (RP manager) from about a month ago at google:




Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #57 on: 01/17/2017 04:56 AM »
Talk by Daniel Andrews (RP manager) from about a month ago at google:





Interesting talk. So the project moved from Phase A to Phase B. Did NASA formally approve a new start? He never mentioned the Taiwanese involvement. They are trying to avoid doing an all out test of the whole rover on a vacuum chamber, hanging from a rope to simulate lunar gravity and driving over lunar soil simulant. Skimping on testing worked out so well during the Faster Cheaper Better era ...

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #58 on: 01/17/2017 05:19 AM »
"We are single-string, meaning no redundancy .."

What the actual frump ? They are sending a lunar lander with single-string avionics if they can squeeze by ? That makes no sense.

Edit:
Interesting talk. So the project moved from Phase A to Phase B. Did NASA formally approve a new start?

Nope, that's not what was said at all. Still pending SRR in FY17, which would be gate for phase B. Effectively this means it's pushed back another year, again.
« Last Edit: 01/17/2017 05:50 AM by savuporo »
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Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #59 on: 01/18/2017 08:32 PM »
I thought I saw in the presentation at the end, where he was talking about the status, a slide that they were in Phase B, component testing. I can be totally wrong, I am not claiming infallibility.

They are moving forward, slowly, using whatever funding they can scrape. They definitely have too much risk, single points of failure, insufficient testing. On the flip side though they are definitely maturing, if they can mitigate enough risk to actually meet the success criteria when they launch though is open. It is obvious that they have no ride to the moon, from the very beginning the idea is to be a cheap add on to the next moon mission. If they do not have a ride there is no point in rushing forward. So the question is, what mission is willing to offer them a ride? Can they fit to EM-2? If New Frontiers 4 selects a mission to South Pole Aitken, how do they interact with that? Would they be competitive or complementary? In a few months, when the Presidential transition is over and some decisions have been taken, we will see if this mission will move out of development hell into actual production.

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #60 on: 01/18/2017 09:18 PM »
So the question is, what mission is willing to offer them a ride? Can they fit to EM-2?
'Ride' as in launch isn't the big deal, missing lander is.
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Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #61 on: 01/19/2017 06:50 AM »
So the question is, what mission is willing to offer them a ride? Can they fit to EM-2?
'Ride' as in launch isn't the big deal, missing lander is.

Resource Prospector will just have to hope that Lunar CATALYST successfully produces a lander. Moon Express or Masten Space are possible suppliers.

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #62 on: 01/19/2017 06:55 AM »
Resource Prospector will just have to hope that Lunar CATALYST successfully produces a lander.
This acronym/initative appears to be dead as a doornail
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Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #63 on: 01/19/2017 07:30 AM »
Resource Prospector will just have to hope that Lunar CATALYST successfully produces a lander.
This acronym/initative appears to be dead as a doornail

Someone needs to tell the firms involved. Masten Space has just put a picture of its XL-1 lunar lander on its website.

(Alternatively do not tell them they may finish it.)
http://masten.aero/vehicles-2

Offline savuporo

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #64 on: 01/19/2017 05:04 PM »
Masten Space has just put a picture of its XL-1 lunar lander on its website.
Really ? Okay then
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Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #65 on: 01/24/2017 12:13 AM »
So the question is, what mission is willing to offer them a ride? Can they fit to EM-2?
'Ride' as in launch isn't the big deal, missing lander is.

Resource Prospector will just have to hope that Lunar CATALYST successfully produces a lander. Moon Express or Masten Space are possible suppliers.
Astrobotic is most likely at 250kg to surface.

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #66 on: 01/24/2017 07:39 AM »
It will be interesting to see if anyone terns up for the Annual Reviews in March.

Offline turbopumpfeedback2

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #67 on: 01/25/2017 07:31 PM »
It appears that one politician is completely into lunar ice utilization:

http://bridenstine.house.gov/blog/?postid=772

this might give RP a boost.

Note: I don't know much about US politics (never been to US), or who this politician is.
« Last Edit: 01/25/2017 09:08 PM by turbopumpfeedback2 »

Offline JH

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #68 on: 01/25/2017 11:56 PM »
He is widely rumored to be the nominee for NASA administrator.

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #69 on: 01/26/2017 02:15 AM »
With 2 lunar XPrize landers and some rovers available, NASA only needs to develop payloads and pay for missions.  The other plus is lead times can be <2yrs on missions.

Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #70 on: 04/14/2017 04:29 AM »
It seems that the Trump transition team asked NASA about Resource Prospector among other things:

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/trump-transition-nasa-foia-moon

Offline AegeanBlue

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #71 on: 05/06/2017 03:34 AM »
Some more details on what the Trump administration asked and a -small- overview of the project

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2017/05/01/nasas-resource-prospector-rover-search-lunar-volatiles/

Offline gbaikie

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #72 on: 05/07/2017 04:58 PM »
Some more details on what the Trump administration asked and a -small- overview of the project

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2017/05/01/nasas-resource-prospector-rover-search-lunar-volatiles/
Quote from above links.
"However, any plans to extract valuable resources from the Moon for commercial purposes would seem to at least bump up against the 1967 Outer Space Treaty signed by the United States, Russia (then USSR), and 90 other countries, which states: "The exploration and use of outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interests of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development, and shall be the province of all mankind."

Actually it's only way to comply with treaty- if talking about commercial lunar water mining. Or commercial mining would/should be done by publicly traded companies- thereby allow all people in the world to have opportunity to be the part owners of the enterprise.  And a private enterprise  [unless restricted by governmental laws] will obviously sell water and/or rocket fuel to any party who wants to pay for it.

So NASA explores the moon and the world chooses whether to be involved with investing the money needed to start mining it. NASA track record indicates it will share the resulting finding of the exploration- with other countries doing the exploration, it might be a matter more in doubt.
Deciding that NASA should mine the Moon, would/could be a mistake AND could be seen as conflicting with the treaty.
NASA should spend less than 10 year doing a lunar exploration program, then start a major Mars exploration program. The purpose of a NASA mars exploration program would be to determine whether [or when] settlements on Mars could be viable. If the the Moon can be commercially mined this could part of answer of whether people of Earth could have settlements on Mars. Though if there isn't minable lunar water, it's still possible that mars settlements could be possible- and it's unrelated to whether one can explore Mars [Or NASA Mars exploration should not depend upon lunar water mining- but if lunar water begins, NASA could decide to buy the lunar water for use in it's Mars exploration- or NASA simply buys water and rocket fuel in space and does have to be concerned about how or where it's from].
Or if get Mars having settlements [a private sector activity] one will have a market for rocket fuel in the space environment- but one should confuse future NASA Mars bases needed for exploration, with future human settlements on Mars. Or many countries have scientific bases at the Antarctic, but don't we don't have settlements in the Antarctic.
 
« Last Edit: 05/07/2017 05:07 PM by gbaikie »

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #73 on: 05/08/2017 10:17 AM »
Some more details on what the Trump administration asked and a -small- overview of the project

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2017/05/01/nasas-resource-prospector-rover-search-lunar-volatiles/
Quote from above links.
"However, any plans to extract valuable resources from the Moon for commercial purposes would seem to at least bump up against the 1967 Outer Space Treaty signed by the United States, Russia (then USSR), and 90 other countries, which states: "The exploration and use of outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interests of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development, and shall be the province of all mankind."

Actually it's only way to comply with treaty- if talking about commercial lunar water mining. Or commercial mining would/should be done by publicly traded companies- thereby allow all people in the world to have opportunity to be the part owners of the enterprise.  And a private enterprise  [unless restricted by governmental laws] will obviously sell water and/or rocket fuel to any party who wants to pay for it.

I don't see commercial mining being in conflict with the OST. As long as the mined material can be made available to any country, corporation or individual who wishes to purchase it for legal purposes, I believe that is in the spirit of what the OST is trying to achieve.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #74 on: 05/08/2017 12:03 PM »
Some more details on what the Trump administration asked and a -small- overview of the project

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2017/05/01/nasas-resource-prospector-rover-search-lunar-volatiles/
Quote from above links.
....

I don't see commercial mining being in conflict with the OST. As long as the mined material can be made available to any country, corporation or individual who wishes to purchase it for legal purposes, I believe that is in the spirit of what the OST is trying to achieve.
There might be as a legal issue with who gets the taxes & user fees from the mining company. I do not believe that a mining company will get free extraction of resources off Earth from the OST AIUI.

Offline Phil Stooke

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #75 on: 05/08/2017 01:58 PM »
Extracting resources (and maybe doing the manufacturing) in space rather than on Earth reduces the burden of pollution and environmental degradation on Earth, which directly benefits people who have to breathe the air and drink the water, i.e. everybody.   Jeff Bezos has talked about this recently but it's an older idea.  There are more benefits than purely economic ones.  So it's all about how you promote it. 

Offline Warren Platts

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #76 on: 05/14/2017 12:12 PM »
And how you go about it. It's hard to argue that burning tonnes of kerosene and solid rocket propellant is good for the environment.
"When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return."--Leonardo Da Vinci

Offline Phil Stooke

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #77 on: 05/14/2017 12:16 PM »
Right!  You're not going up and down every time.  You are moving the action off the Earth. 

Offline ELinder

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Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #78 on: 05/30/2017 04:04 PM »
Seen a few weeks ago on the NASA Houston Level 9 Tour. The docent described the wheels as being the actual ones going to the moon, but as it was sitting on the shop floor I took it to mean the final design.

Erich

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