Author Topic: Lawmakers produce Bill to extend shuttle to 2015, utilize CxP, advance HLV  (Read 157200 times)

Offline jml

  • Full Member
  • **
  • Posts: 280
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Thanks for the kind words to the people above :)

Yeah, the Ares I reference also made me wonder, but I'm not sure it means "go back and continue with Ares I" - they can't based on budget alone anyway, and the Augustine findings would still stand.

That's how I read it too. Congress doesn't want NASA for unecessary cancellation fee if the technology can be used for the HLV.

Yep, this language could be interpreted to suggest ideas like modifying the Ares I IU contract into a HLV IU contract, and the other Ares I contracts into other HLV contracts so as to avoid or at least minimize the billions in termination costs. But the language is still just vague enough that it might mean test-flying the stick several times from 39B as "Rocket-X".

Offline yg1968

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9139
  • Liked: 1159
  • Likes Given: 771
51D Mascot,

I would be interested to know if you believe that the Shuttle extension money has any chance of being appropriated.

I wonder if this bill has bi-partisan support and if Obama might be tempted to veto it. Was there any imput from the White House on this bill?
« Last Edit: 03/04/2010 03:01 AM by yg1968 »

Offline Danderman

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9566
  • Liked: 345
  • Likes Given: 459
For those who do not follow Congressional legislation closely, one important metric for this proposed bill will be the number of co-sponsors who add their name to the bill.


Offline neilh

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2365
  • Pasadena, CA
  • Liked: 43
  • Likes Given: 148
Thanks for the kind words to the people above :)

Yeah, the Ares I reference also made me wonder, but I'm not sure it means "go back and continue with Ares I" - they can't based on budget alone anyway, and the Augustine findings would still stand.

That's how I read it too. Congress doesn't want NASA to pay for unecessary cancellation fees if the technology from Constellation can be re-used for the HLV.

I imagine it also allows congressmen who've already staked on Ares I to support the bill, as they can still say that they're sort-of supporting Ares.
Someone is wrong on the Internet.
http://xkcd.com/386/

Offline Jeff Bingham

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1590
  • aka "51-D Mascot"
  • Liked: 37
  • Likes Given: 37
Thanks for the kind words to the people above :)

Yeah, the Ares I reference also made me wonder, but I'm not sure it means "go back and continue with Ares I" - they can't based on budget alone anyway, and the Augustine findings would still stand.

The Ares 1 references are, first, "suggestive" as options to be reviewed as part of HLV development. The notion is that an evolvable shuttle-derived HLV could begin with a core that might be an in-line configuration of 4-segment SSRBs, coupled to an ET-sized core segment (strengthened and with a boat-tail at the bottom holding SSMEs, and a payload attachment/inter-stage carrying an accelerated Orion with LAS attached) which would become the "government-operated" LEO/ISS support capability, with a target IOC of 2013; the core would then evolve using five-segment SSRB, powered upper stage with capability for cargo and crew for providing exo-LEO capability by 2018. Sounds familiar? All that could be accomplished without necessarily engaging in a two-year new procurement process by using existing contracts, novated to redirect work to those configurations. That would mean Ares 1 serves to provide additional testing of 5-segment performance characteristics, as well as potentially serving to test LAS capabilities, etc., but not to serve as a full system for crew delivery to LEO/ISS, as has been the focus under Constellation; the initial evolvable HLV core could serve in that role, and then grow/evolve to the full HLV capability for support of exo-LEO missions. At least those are the underlying assumptions that are proposed for refinement and evaluation as an option. That scenario is also founded on very strong indications that such an approach is not only a matter of informal industry-level conversations, but also a matter of internal discussions within NASA. In essence, the language in the bill helps provide "top-cover" for pursuing those kinds of discussions to determine the degree of feasibility and potential for successful development.
Offering only my own views and experience as a long-time "Space Cadet."

Offline Bill White

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2019
  • Chicago area
  • Liked: 5
  • Likes Given: 0
In other words, spend the budgeted Constellation "close out" money on building something like a Jupiter 130 rather than paying termination fees?

Is that reasonably close?

Edit to add: The use of the word "novation" also speaks volumes.
« Last Edit: 03/04/2010 03:17 AM by Bill White »
EML architectures should be seen as ratchet opportunities

Offline Jeff Bingham

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1590
  • aka "51-D Mascot"
  • Liked: 37
  • Likes Given: 37
51D Mascot,

I would be interested to know if you believe that the Shuttle extension money has any chance of being appropriated.

I wonder if this bill has bi-partisan support and if Obama might be tempted to veto it. Was there any imput from the White House on this bill?

Absolutely a possibility of getting the funds, if the NEED is adequately and convincingly demonstrated as being a requirement for the protection of a $100 billion dollar investment in ISS and the need to ensure its sustainability through at least 2020.

There IS bipartisan support, though not completely visible at this stage, except in the group lining up to introduce identical companion legislation in the House. No White House involvement was either sought or offered in developing this bill, as it is seen as an alternative to the White House proposal; in fact, the introduction of the bill itself is seen as providing a potential avenue for establishing the framework for subsequent conversations with the White House at whatever point they deem it is necessary to start talking about a realistic approach to a very clearly unpopular budget proposal.
Offering only my own views and experience as a long-time "Space Cadet."

Offline Jeff Bingham

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1590
  • aka "51-D Mascot"
  • Liked: 37
  • Likes Given: 37
For those who do not follow Congressional legislation closely, one important metric for this proposed bill will be the number of co-sponsors who add their name to the bill.



That is often "a" metric, but should never be construed as a necessarily "telling" metric. Especially when you recognize the kind of process that such a bill goes through after introduction, with referral to and consideration by a Committee of Jurisdiction, a mark-up to refine it to a consensus point prior to reporting to the floor by the Committee. THEN is when the nuts and bolts of coalitions, blocs of support, and vote-counting get relevant.
Offering only my own views and experience as a long-time "Space Cadet."

Offline Jeff Bingham

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1590
  • aka "51-D Mascot"
  • Liked: 37
  • Likes Given: 37
Good article but in respect of Shuttle costs (and at the risk of nit picking), I doubt that the $1.2B in FY 2010 and $2B in FY2012 are the entire Shuttle extension costs, they are just the additionnal costs above the NASA regular $19B budget that is necessary for extension.

Quote
On the topic of costs, the funding for an extension, the first two years are costed at an extra $1.2B in 2011, followed by an extra $2B in 2012. These figures are much less than previously touted, and may have a good selling point for the huge jobs and more so skill set savings a shuttle extension would provide.



Not true, yg...the $19B includes only $700m and change for shuttle operations for the first quarter of FY 2011, which is a hedge against extending into that period in order to complete the remaining manifest. No other funding within the proposed $19 billion for FY 2011 has anything to do with shuttle operations. FY 2012 on, under the President's plan, has zero funding for shuttle ops. The $2b authorization--for money over and above what is in the President's request--is the figure for total SSP operations at a flight rate maximum of two per year, and that figure has supporting documentation in reports, both internal and in those provided to the Congress, which provide a good confidence level that the number is sufficient to do the job, if such extended operations are found to be required as a result if the ISS supportability assessment required by the bill as one of the key factors in determining what level, if any, of extended operations would be essential to ensure long-term (2020 and beyond) viability of ISS. That does not mean that SSP would need to be co-extended with ISS; only that, where it's unique capability is required in the near-term to provide delivery for large ORU/SRU elements for prepositioning aboard ISS before SSP capability is "surrendered."

OK, thanks for carifying that. So the cost per year for Shuttle extension really is essentially 2B$ per year.

Correct; that is the "informed" estimate that has underlying justification sufficient for it to be considered reasonable, especially when coupled with a two-flight-per-year flight rate, which is likely the maximum number that could be safely flown at that reduced program funding level and associated reductions of flight support requirements and resources.
Offering only my own views and experience as a long-time "Space Cadet."

Offline yg1968

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9139
  • Liked: 1159
  • Likes Given: 771
51D Mascot,

I would be interested to know if you believe that the Shuttle extension money has any chance of being appropriated.

I wonder if this bill has bi-partisan support and if Obama might be tempted to veto it. Was there any imput from the White House on this bill?

Absolutely a possibility of getting the funds, if the NEED is adequately and convincingly demonstrated as being a requirement for the protection of a $100 billion dollar investment in ISS and the need to ensure its sustainability through at least 2020.

There IS bipartisan support, though not completely visible at this stage, except in the group lining up to introduce identical companion legislation in the House. No White House involvement was either sought or offered in developing this bill, as it is seen as an alternative to the White House proposal; in fact, the introduction of the bill itself is seen as providing a potential avenue for establishing the framework for subsequent conversations with the White House at whatever point they deem it is necessary to start talking about a realistic approach to a very clearly unpopular budget proposal.

The irony of this bill is that it includes things that everybody expected to be part of the FY 2011 Budget (especially after the results of the HLV study): an SD-HLV for 2018 (J-2xx) and funding for commercial crew for LEO with a NASA SD rocket as a backup for late 2013 (J-1xx).
« Last Edit: 03/04/2010 03:48 AM by yg1968 »

Offline Jeff Bingham

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1590
  • aka "51-D Mascot"
  • Liked: 37
  • Likes Given: 37
In other words, spend the budgeted Constellation "close out" money on building something like a Jupiter 130 rather than paying termination fees?

Is that reasonably close?

Edit to add: The use of the word "novation" also speaks volumes.

I'd say that's reasonably close.
Offering only my own views and experience as a long-time "Space Cadet."

Offline vt_hokie

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3020
  • Hazlet, NJ
  • Liked: 88
  • Likes Given: 208
Now this is the plan that I expected from the Obama administration, before we were blindsided with the radical, and imo rushed, shift that's called for in their actual budget proposal.
« Last Edit: 03/04/2010 03:46 AM by vt_hokie »

Offline phantomdj

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 335
  • Standing in the Saturn V nozzle
  • Merritt Island, Fl
  • Liked: 11
  • Likes Given: 0
For those who do not follow Congressional legislation closely, one important metric for this proposed bill will be the number of co-sponsors who add their name to the bill.



I agree.  For this bill to have legs it will need the support of some other influential Senators like Barbara Mikulski, Bill Nelson and Richard Shelby.
1 percent for NASA.  We spend more than twice that per year on soda.

Offline kkattula

  • Member
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2508
  • Melbourne, Australia
  • Liked: 10
  • Likes Given: 3
Is it at all possible that the Administration proposal was designed to be so radical as to drive POR support to the middle ground? 

i.e. SD-HLV, moderate shuttle extension, commercial crew, cancel Ares I and increased science and R&D funding. Plus get Congress to fork up a little extra to cover the Shuttle extension.

I can well imagine that if this new bill had been offered by the Whitehouse, Shelby et al would have fought hard to keep some elements of the POR. Now, they would most likely be happy with this compromise, and could show how much they'd saved.

Maybe they all know this and are just playing the game.

Offline AndrewSTS

  • Member
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 697
  • New York
  • Liked: 1
  • Likes Given: 6
Well I love it. For the additional cost, which isn't much in the big picture, it's a lifesaver. I'd want to know who ISN'T sponsoring this!

Letter writing campaign?

Offline SpaceUSMC

  • Member
  • Member
  • Posts: 95
  • Space Marine.
  • Wisconsin
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Holy smokes, you wont hear this often from me, but somebody in congress wrote a bill I like! all my enthusiasim aside and it was said before, this is what I expected to become of the program, I will be writing my reps to voice support for this, not that they listen due to other issues out there but this is an important one for our country and I suggest others do the same.

Offline Lampyridae

  • Veteran
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1645
  • Liked: 64
  • Likes Given: 121
Wahey, what do you know, just like the folks predicted, here's a compromise bill that's better than either.

What's not to like about this bill?
*SD-HLV, aka Jupiter-130
*Shuttle extension and no gap - right on!
*Orion by 2013-15 - awesome, maybe we'll see Orion and shuttle docked at the ISS simultaneously - Orion and shuttle both benefit from LON capability
*Takes pressure off the commercial providers - something I was worried could result in a bad accident
*ISS to 2020 like we wanted
*All the other R&D & science stuff too

Now, something's obviously going to be compromised... not sure what that is at this stage. Might actually see cost savings worked out instead, such as commercial shuttle ops...

As for the actual goal, I think the discovery of lunar water - and hydrocarbons! - will make the moon look a lot more promising. Hopefully we'll get a manned landing at least.
« Last Edit: 03/04/2010 04:47 AM by Lampyridae »
SKYLON... The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen's preferred surface-to-orbit conveyance.

Offline Danderman

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9566
  • Liked: 345
  • Likes Given: 459
For those who do not follow Congressional legislation closely, one important metric for this proposed bill will be the number of co-sponsors who add their name to the bill.



That is often "a" metric, but should never be construed as a necessarily "telling" metric. Especially when you recognize the kind of process that such a bill goes through after introduction, with referral to and consideration by a Committee of Jurisdiction, a mark-up to refine it to a consensus point prior to reporting to the floor by the Committee. THEN is when the nuts and bolts of coalitions, blocs of support, and vote-counting get relevant.

Your description of the legislative process is not inaccurate, but you forget that amassing co-sponsors is one of the ways that bills make it through that process.

BTW, I am surprised that no one has pointed out that appropriations cannot start in the Senate.

Offline Davinator

  • Moderator
  • Global Moderator
  • Full Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 326
  • Liked: 52
  • Likes Given: 30
Thanks for the article Chris. Really interesting. Such a mistake to give up on the shuttle now.

Offline Jeff Bingham

  • Extreme Veteran
  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1590
  • aka "51-D Mascot"
  • Liked: 37
  • Likes Given: 37
For those who do not follow Congressional legislation closely, one important metric for this proposed bill will be the number of co-sponsors who add their name to the bill.



That is often "a" metric, but should never be construed as a necessarily "telling" metric. Especially when you recognize the kind of process that such a bill goes through after introduction, with referral to and consideration by a Committee of Jurisdiction, a mark-up to refine it to a consensus point prior to reporting to the floor by the Committee. THEN is when the nuts and bolts of coalitions, blocs of support, and vote-counting get relevant.

Your description of the legislative process is not inaccurate, but you forget that amassing co-sponsors is one of the ways that bills make it through that process.

BTW, I am surprised that no one has pointed out that appropriations cannot start in the Senate.


Absolutely right, but the point here is timing. At this stage you have "camps" at the extreme edges of "PoR" or bust and "Bold New Idea" with many of the influential folks and key players taking those positions--now. But when it becomes clear, as I believe it will, that neither of those are going to be sustainable, then a mddle ground will be sought. But it has to be articulated as an option, and THAT is the true purpose of this bill. Thus, an attempt to line up all those players prior to introduction would have been counterproductive. The hope is that having a reasonably cohesive, credible alternative "on the table" can provide an eventual rallying point for a path forward, or at the very least a focal point for the serious discussion of what that path should entail.

Not sure about the relevance of the comment about approps, because this is an authorization bill, not an appropriations bill. Also, in reality, the Senate is free to mark up an appropriations bill at any point, without awaiting a House bill; in the end, the House bill becomes the "vehicle", but its actual content is the result of conference action equally participated by both chambers.
Offering only my own views and experience as a long-time "Space Cadet."

Tags: