Author Topic: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion  (Read 486018 times)

Offline thomson

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Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« on: 06/27/2010 05:30 PM »
I've tried to find suitable topic, but searching for CST-100 does not return any posts.

The CST-100 capsule, being built by Being, is going to carry seven crew members. It is being built for short missions to the space station. Bigelow Aerospace is interested in CST-100 and they are working closely with Boeing.

Source: [1]

Also, according to [2], it will be able to launch on Atlas, Delta (that would be Atlas V and Delta IV, I suppose) and Falcon 9.

1. http://www.space.com/businesstechnology/boeing-new-capsule-concept-100625.html
2. http://www.aiaa.org/pdf/industry/presentations/Lindenmoyer_C3PO.pdf

Please post additional information to this topic as they become available.

Offline neilh

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #1 on: 06/27/2010 06:06 PM »
Richest info source is the CCDev Space Act agreement:

http://www.nasa.gov/centers/johnson/pdf/444144main_NNJ10TA03S_boeing_saa.pdf
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Offline pathfinder_01

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #2 on: 06/27/2010 09:49 PM »
Any info on how long this capsule will be able to stay in space? So far it looks like it lacks solar panels which means it is either powered by battery or fuel cell.  And the quote that “it will not be designed to stay in space for long periods of time” in the space.com article suggests that a CRV may be needed if Boeing’s capsule is selected.

Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #3 on: 06/27/2010 09:58 PM »
From space.com:

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Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #4 on: 06/27/2010 09:59 PM »
Any info on how long this capsule will be able to stay in space? So far it looks like it lacks solar panels which means it is either powered by battery or fuel cell.  And the quote that “it will not be designed to stay in space for long periods of time” in the space.com article suggests that a CRV may be needed if Boeing’s capsule is selected.

Looks like fuel cells so maybe the same amount of time as a Space shuttle. But I think its closer to 5-10 days.
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Online hop

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #5 on: 06/27/2010 10:14 PM »
And the quote that “it will not be designed to stay in space for long periods of time” in the space.com article suggests that a CRV may be needed if Boeing’s capsule is selected.
Free flight time isn't necessarily related to docked time (see Soyuz). It's not entirely clear which they are talking about, and even if the first versions are only capable of brief docked missions, extending that may not be a big deal. I'd be surprised if they designed it in a way to make this very difficult.

Cryogenic fuel cells would hurt long docked missions, but switching power sources later isn't out of the question.

Offline manboy

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #6 on: 06/28/2010 04:02 AM »
I've tried to find suitable topic, but searching for CST-100 does not return any posts.

The CST-100 capsule, being built by Being, is going to carry seven crew members. It is being built for short missions to the space station. Bigelow Aerospace is interested in CST-100 and they are working closely with Boeing.

Source: [1]

Also, according to [2], it will be able to launch on Atlas, Delta (that would be Atlas V and Delta IV, I suppose) and Falcon 9.

1. http://www.space.com/businesstechnology/boeing-new-capsule-concept-100625.html
2. http://www.aiaa.org/pdf/industry/presentations/Lindenmoyer_C3PO.pdf

Please post additional information to this topic as they become available.

Sounds like Boeing might want to use it as part of the manned COTS program, so wouldn't that mean it would have to be able to be docked for six months?
"Cheese has been sent into space before. But the same cheese has never been sent into space twice." - StephenB

Offline pathfinder_01

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #7 on: 06/28/2010 04:22 AM »
I've tried to find suitable topic, but searching for CST-100 does not return any posts.

The CST-100 capsule, being built by Being, is going to carry seven crew members. It is being built for short missions to the space station. Bigelow Aerospace is interested in CST-100 and they are working closely with Boeing.

Source: [1]

Also, according to [2], it will be able to launch on Atlas, Delta (that would be Atlas V and Delta IV, I suppose) and Falcon 9.

1. http://www.space.com/businesstechnology/boeing-new-capsule-concept-100625.html
2. http://www.aiaa.org/pdf/industry/presentations/Lindenmoyer_C3PO.pdf

Please post additional information to this topic as they become available.

Sounds like Boeing might want to use it as part of the manned COTS program, so wouldn't that mean it would have to be able to be docked for six months?

From the looks of it NASA commercial crew has not nailed down that requirement. They might. Dragron has a two year lifespan because the company wanted that ability.  Dreamchaser I am unsure of.  Boeing most likely will not do anything to endanger the possibility of six month stays, but I can see them temporally cutting that requirement to field the product faster or cheaper.

Offline manboy

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #8 on: 06/28/2010 04:31 AM »
I've tried to find suitable topic, but searching for CST-100 does not return any posts.

The CST-100 capsule, being built by Being, is going to carry seven crew members. It is being built for short missions to the space station. Bigelow Aerospace is interested in CST-100 and they are working closely with Boeing.

Source: [1]

Also, according to [2], it will be able to launch on Atlas, Delta (that would be Atlas V and Delta IV, I suppose) and Falcon 9.

1. http://www.space.com/businesstechnology/boeing-new-capsule-concept-100625.html
2. http://www.aiaa.org/pdf/industry/presentations/Lindenmoyer_C3PO.pdf

Please post additional information to this topic as they become available.

Sounds like Boeing might want to use it as part of the manned COTS program, so wouldn't that mean it would have to be able to be docked for six months?

From the looks of it NASA commercial crew has not nailed down that requirement. They might. Dragron has a two year lifespan because the company wanted that ability.  Dreamchaser I am unsure of.  Boeing most likely will not do anything to endanger the possibility of six month stays, but I can see them temporally cutting that requirement to field the product faster or cheaper.
I think only DragonLab has a two year lifespan, not sure if it applies to a crew version. With Dreamchaser it's hard to find much recent info on it, and the only video demonstration I could find was inaccurate (in the video it was a SSTO craft).
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Offline kkattula

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #9 on: 06/28/2010 04:45 AM »
... With Dreamchaser it's hard to find much recent info on it, and the only video demonstration I could find was inaccurate (in the video it was a SSTO craft).

It was probably a video of the original sub-orbital version, using it's internal hybrid propulsion. The orbital version would launch on an Atlas V, and use it's internal propulsion for OMS.

Offline simonth

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #10 on: 06/28/2010 05:35 AM »
And the quote that “it will not be designed to stay in space for long periods of time” in the space.com article suggests that a CRV may be needed if Boeing’s capsule is selected.
Free flight time isn't necessarily related to docked time (see Soyuz). It's not entirely clear which they are talking about, and even if the first versions are only capable of brief docked missions, extending that may not be a big deal. I'd be surprised if they designed it in a way to make this very difficult.

Of course they won't design themselves into a short on orbit lifetime trap. But there is a lot more to long-term on-orbit capability (180days at station, e.g.) than power requirements.

Offline manboy

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #11 on: 06/28/2010 07:13 AM »
... With Dreamchaser it's hard to find much recent info on it, and the only video demonstration I could find was inaccurate (in the video it was a SSTO craft).

It was probably a video of the original sub-orbital version, using it's internal hybrid propulsion. The orbital version would launch on an Atlas V, and use it's internal propulsion for OMS.
I didn't know there was ever a sub-orbital version planned.
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Offline Downix

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #12 on: 06/28/2010 12:01 PM »
... With Dreamchaser it's hard to find much recent info on it, and the only video demonstration I could find was inaccurate (in the video it was a SSTO craft).

It was probably a video of the original sub-orbital version, using it's internal hybrid propulsion. The orbital version would launch on an Atlas V, and use it's internal propulsion for OMS.
I didn't know there was ever a sub-orbital version planned.
No, but the capsules design does lend itself to BEO operations as well, if you tied it to a bigger SM, or the SM to another handler, like a Cygnus or ACES.
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Offline thomson

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #13 on: 06/28/2010 12:05 PM »
But there is a lot more to long-term on-orbit capability (180days at station, e.g.) than power requirements.
Care to elaborate on that? I thought that once capsule is attached to the station, it can disable its ECLSS. Assuming there's no living payload stored, the capsule on its own won't use any oxygen. Please correct me if I'm wrong. (I'm a software engineer, not a rocket scientist.)
 

Online mmeijeri

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #14 on: 06/28/2010 12:10 PM »
There was a discussion about this a while ago in the Shuttle Q&A thread. If the capsule uses cryogenic fuel cells those will limit time on orbit even if no power is drawn from them. You still need power to land. Maybe you could use a separate power source like the batteries used in launch vehicles for landing? Or maybe noncryogenic fuel cells.
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Offline pathfinder_01

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #15 on: 06/28/2010 01:18 PM »
But there is a lot more to long-term on-orbit capability (180days at station, e.g.) than power requirements.
Care to elaborate on that? I thought that once capsule is attached to the station, it can disable its ECLSS. Assuming there's no living payload stored, the capsule on its own won't use any oxygen. Please correct me if I'm wrong. (I'm a software engineer, not a rocket scientist.)
 


No rocket scientist either but from reading, I would say heat shields, propellant, and parachutes can be affected by long stays. Some heat shields are not suitable for long stay, some propellants can either breakdown or react with valves and other stuff within engines\thrusters and the likelihood of parachute failure increases with time stored. Also some power sources(cryogenic fuel cells) are not good for long term storage.

I also expect that some materials and parts must be subjected to certification before staying in orbit for 6 months which is probably involves 6 months in a simulated space environment.

Offline Jim

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #16 on: 06/28/2010 01:26 PM »
Don't forget thermal considerations.  A docked spacecraft is at the mercy of the ISS attitude wrt the sun and deep space

Offline EE Scott

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #17 on: 06/28/2010 01:40 PM »
I think it is interesting that we are still speculating on the power source, i.e., fuel cell, etc.  Why so little detail provided on this?  Would it be giving too much away to the competition?  I would assume (perhaps incorrectly) that solar cell deployment and power generating technology has had enough progress over the past few decades to make it the preferred source in this application.  I mean, fuel cells?  Give me a break.  What are their advantages, given their added complexity and weight?  I am probably missing something here.
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Offline pathfinder_01

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #18 on: 06/28/2010 01:59 PM »
I think it is interesting that we are still speculating on the power source, i.e., fuel cell, etc.  Why so little detail provided on this?  Would it be giving too much away to the competition?  I would assume (perhaps incorrectly) that solar cell deployment and power generating technology has had enough progress over the past few decades to make it the preferred source in this application.  I mean, fuel cells?  Give me a break.  What are their advantages, given their added complexity and weight?  I am probably missing something here.

You could possible reuse the fuel cells easier than solar panels. With solar panels you would need to figure out how to stow and un- stow them in a manner that allows reentry or dump them. Solar panels require batteries and so the total mass of needing solar panels, plus batteries, plus oxygen and water for the crew and\or cooling needs of the craft could be higher.

The water generated could be used by the ISS for life support needs. The ISS used water to generate oxygen. The shuttle provides water to the ISS on shuttle missions.   

I am not sure how much better solar panels are today. I know in the past that the space shuttle generated more electricity than the MIR space station. Solar’s advantage over fuel cells is in long term power. Fuel cells will eventually run out of consumables while solar can keep going.

Also for all we know this craft could be battery powered. 
« Last Edit: 06/28/2010 02:08 PM by pathfinder_01 »

Offline manboy

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion
« Reply #19 on: 06/28/2010 02:04 PM »
There was a discussion about this a while ago in the Shuttle Q&A thread. If the capsule uses cryogenic fuel cells those will limit time on orbit even if no power is drawn from them. You still need power to land. Maybe you could use a separate power source like the batteries used in launch vehicles for landing? Or maybe noncryogenic fuel cells.
Well what if you use two different set of batteries, one pack is activated for takeoff and the second is activated for landing.

I think it is interesting that we are still speculating on the power source, i.e., fuel cell, etc.  Why so little detail provided on this?
I don't think the design has been finalized.
« Last Edit: 06/28/2010 02:06 PM by manboy »
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