Author Topic: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1  (Read 67011 times)

Offline john smith 19

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #540 on: 05/19/2017 09:02 AM »
The truly sad part is that Orion will have been in development for 20 years by the time it finally flies crew.
That is quite an achievement, but not a good achievement.  :(
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Online AncientU

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #541 on: 05/19/2017 01:48 PM »
Yes, but you said the funding was insufficient. I'm trying to keep SpaceX out of this - How much (accounting for NASA inefficiency) should they have to be sure to make good progress on SLS and Orion?

My estimate is $6 to $7 billion and $3 to $4 billion respectively in order to function on a path that allowed continual progress at a pace that was respectable, accounting for the fact that the project would only ever actually see about 1/3 of it due to the way the contractors deal with government contracts.

That would have kept SLS/Orion on a reasonable path to deployment. IMO it would already be flying test articles and boiler plates by now.

Jupiter had a chance. Numbers sound about right. But ... no way to control those involved to make it happen.

Once the monster was restarted, all bets were off. And still are.

Add:

With all the changes since, its now a completely different world than that of the J-130.

If you knew what you know now then, what would you have done differently.

The way it was restarted gave the contractors and Program Office a pass on accountability. 
It was proclaimed 'The Law' ...and contractors were anointed by Congress. 

Wonder how different it would have been if SLS/Orion, even given the Congressionally-mandated specifications, was bid out as a fixed cost* contract -- since it was so simple?

* or cost plus incentive fee
« Last Edit: 05/19/2017 01:49 PM by AncientU »
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Offline notsorandom

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #542 on: 05/19/2017 01:54 PM »
If we are picking apart the history of SLS and asking why it didn't end up like Direct's Jupiter then we need to also look at how STS was ended and SLS started. Jupiter was supposed to be a "direct" follow on to the Shuttle. It was to use much of the same tooling, techniques, infrastructure, and people that Shuttle used.

I don't think Direct was unreasonable. However the plan required a supportive Whitehouse, NASA administration, and Congress whereas SLS only got the latter of the three. Direct only made sense as an immediate follow on to STS when the workforce and equipment could start building the Jupiters soon after the last Shuttle flight. The flight rate was also assumed to be higher, like the Shuttle's, not once ever year or every couple of years. I remember the flight rate charts the Direct folks made back then. At SLS's low flight rate those charts indicated there might have been better options for NASA.

NASA delayed starting SLS as long as they could, so long that Congress threated subpoenas. By the time SLS was started all of the momentum STS had stalled. People were laid off and had gone on to other things, tooling had been scrapped. To compound that SLS was made bigger than necessary forcing expensive changes to the STS infrastructure. New manufacturing techniques and tool were to be used rather than those used by STS. We're seeing the results of that now. SLS also flirted with replacing the boosters early in the program.  Something that wouldn't have helped its BLEO payload and had no near term benefit or use.

To be fair though it could be worse. SLS has avoided some pitfalls. The choice early on to use only 4 RS-25s saved money and time. The three engine version would fly only a few times, while the five engine version would likely never fly being dependent on a huge upper stage. They went with the EUS, a reasonably sized upper stage using off the shelf engines. The Cryogenic Propulsion Stage and advance boosters were dropped in favor of the more useful EUS and the use of SEP in mission architectures.

Offline gospacex

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #543 on: 05/19/2017 02:45 PM »
If we are picking apart the history of SLS and asking why it didn't end up like Direct's Jupiter then we need to also look at how STS was ended and SLS started. Jupiter was supposed to be a "direct" follow on to the Shuttle. It was to use much of the same tooling, techniques, infrastructure, and people that Shuttle used.

I don't think Direct was unreasonable. However the plan required a supportive Whitehouse, NASA administration, and Congress whereas SLS only got the latter of the three. Direct only made sense as an immediate follow on to STS when the workforce and equipment could start building the Jupiters soon after the last Shuttle flight. The flight rate was also assumed to be higher, like the Shuttle's, not once ever year or every couple of years. I remember the flight rate charts the Direct folks made back then. At SLS's low flight rate those charts indicated there might have been better options for NASA.

NASA delayed starting SLS as long as they could, so long that Congress threated subpoenas. By the time SLS was started all of the momentum STS had stalled. People were laid off and had gone on to other things, tooling had been scrapped. To compound that SLS was made bigger than necessary forcing expensive changes to the STS infrastructure. New manufacturing techniques and tool were to be used rather than those used by STS. We're seeing the results of that now. SLS also flirted with replacing the boosters early in the program.  Something that wouldn't have helped its BLEO payload and had no near term benefit or use.

To be fair though it could be worse.

It _was_ worse. The whole debacle of Constellation's "1.5 launch" thing (now the term even sounds idiotic, what the hell is "0.5 launch"?) and developing two rockets, one awful and one way oversized. It was dragging on for years, like nightmare you can't wake up from...

Offline clongton

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #544 on: 05/19/2017 03:06 PM »
If you knew what you know now then, what would you have done differently?

If you remember back in the day the congressionally mandated Shuttle-Derived LV wasn’t my personal favorite. I pursued the DIRECT route with Ross because of the congressional mandate. Had that not been locked in by law I would have gone full bore, like I did for DIRECT, for the ULA Atlas-V Phase 2 and into Atlas-V Phase 3, which would have been capable of putting ~150 tonnes in a very large fairing into LEO all while using the existing manufacturing capabilities and launch infrastructure.
http://www.ulalaunch.com/uploads/docs/Published_Papers/Evolution/EELVPhase2_2010.pdf

For a spacecraft I would have mandated that the Atlas-V be capable of launching it to LEO by itself, where the US could be refueled if necessary to send it further out to EML-2, which is where I would have located the permanent infrastructure for both lunar and planetary missions. That is where all the mission spacecraft would be docked, serviced and resupplied. It is where space missions would depart from and return to. One needs to remember that the ground-launched spacecraft is essentially a taxi to the space-based infrastructure. Once into space the crew would transfer to space-only spacecraft that are designed for the task with a lifespan of dozens of missions before needing to be replaced. EML-2 is literally half way to anyplace in the solar system.

Oh and I would have parked myself in Senator Shelby's office in DC constantly updating him on the advantages to his voter base located around MSFC and Decatur, urging him to get it all and not share with Louisiana. More than any other person this man IS the American rocket industry (excluding the recent new comers), and carries more congressional clout than all of the rest of them combined, with lots of clout to spare. I have nothing against Michaud, but they have little to no congressional influence. And it is congressional influence that will make or break a program. One needs to speak truth to power, and in Senator Shelby's case the voter base in Alabama IS the truth and Shelby himself IS the power. That's just the way it is and if one wants to make something happen you have got to line up all your political ducks in a row as the first priority. Without that everything else, no matter how good, will eventually fall apart.
« Last Edit: 05/19/2017 04:13 PM by clongton »
Chuck - DIRECT co-founder
I started my career on the Saturn-V F-1A engine

Offline clongton

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #545 on: 05/19/2017 03:24 PM »
It _was_ worse. The whole debacle of Constellation's "1.5 launch" thing (now the term even sounds idiotic, what the hell is "0.5 launch"?) and developing two rockets, one awful and one way oversized. It was dragging on for years, like nightmare you can't wake up from...

I actually liked the fundamental concept of the 1.5 architecture. But I would have made the booster be a LRB and core vehicle capable of handling more than just 2 of them. Remember the AJAX concept we worked on? It was pretty good, almost as capable as Atlas-V Phase 3.

Fundamentally it makes economic sense to use 2 different configurations of the SAME rocket to launch Heavy Cargo or Crew. The crew launcher could be used alone to launch Orion or tasked as the LRB for the heavy lifter. It is fundamentally a good concept. Constellation’s choice of the Shuttle’s SRB as the booster was a program killer. It was the root cause of everything that sunk Constellation. Had they used the Atlas-V 1st stage as an LRB instead it would have been a beautiful and relatively economic use of existing knowledge, infrastructure and personnel. It would have worked. It would have been AJAX.

AJAX had the advantage that it would likely have complied enough with the congressional mandate that it would have passed the smell test. Orion was deliberately sized to exclude the Atlas from being able to carry it to orbit. Constellation was sunk by arrogance and stupidity (IMO).
« Last Edit: 05/19/2017 03:36 PM by clongton »
Chuck - DIRECT co-founder
I started my career on the Saturn-V F-1A engine

Online Space Ghost 1962

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #546 on: 05/19/2017 07:34 PM »
If you knew what you know now then, what would you have done differently?

If you remember back in the day the congressionally mandated Shuttle-Derived LV wasn’t my personal favorite. I pursued the DIRECT route with Ross because of the congressional mandate. Had that not been locked in by law I would have gone full bore, like I did for DIRECT, for the ULA Atlas-V Phase 2 and into Atlas-V Phase 3, which would have been capable of putting ~150 tonnes in a very large fairing into LEO all while using the existing manufacturing capabilities and launch infrastructure.
http://www.ulalaunch.com/uploads/docs/Published_Papers/Evolution/EELVPhase2_2010.pdf
Yes I do remember that.

Quote
For a spacecraft I would have mandated that the Atlas-V be capable of launching it to LEO by itself, where the US could be refueled if necessary to send it further out to EML-2, which is where I would have located the permanent infrastructure for both lunar and planetary missions. That is where all the mission spacecraft would be docked, serviced and resupplied. It is where space missions would depart from and return to. One needs to remember that the ground-launched spacecraft is essentially a taxi to the space-based infrastructure. Once into space the crew would transfer to space-only spacecraft that are designed for the task with a lifespan of dozens of missions before needing to be replaced. EML-2 is literally half way to anyplace in the solar system.
Not too different from DSG/DST.

Quote
Oh and I would have parked myself in Senator Shelby's office in DC constantly updating him on the advantages to his voter base located around MSFC and Decatur ...
Interesting.

I was never sure he saw eye-to-eye on any of what you suggest. Too much listening only to MSFC dweebs.

Offline oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #547 on: 05/20/2017 05:12 PM »
Two new articles which are not good for the SLS/Orion.

http://spacenews.com/2018-budget-proposal-to-spread-cuts-across-nasa-programs/

This first is the Administration counting pennies. It is not too bad but is an indication that the Administration is not a big fan of SLS/Orion as some would have us believe.

http://spacenews.com/report-criticizes-development-of-sls-test-stands/

This second is more on bad management decisions that seemingly were responses to congressional pressure that resulted in cost increases to the program that were not necessary. Writing a FFP contract to test something before you had the specifications of what you wanted to test is not usually a good decision.

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #548 on: 05/25/2017 02:57 PM »
Quote
Jeff Foust‏ @jeff_foust 9m9 minutes ago

ASAP chair Patricia Sanders says NASA did a “thorough and credible” job on its crewed EM-1 study.

https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/867753764006088704

ie the study produced the correct answer  ;)

Online AncientU

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Re: SLS/Orion Crewed Flight Proposal for EM-1
« Reply #549 on: 05/25/2017 04:44 PM »
Quote
Jeff Foust‏ @jeff_foust 9m9 minutes ago

ASAP chair Patricia Sanders says NASA did a “thorough and credible” job on its crewed EM-1 study.

https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/867753764006088704

ie the study produced the correct answer  ;)

If congress came up with $900M, would it have been the wrong answer, and the exact same analysis deemed "flawed and unsupportable"?
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