Author Topic: SLS General Discussion Thread 2  (Read 224128 times)

Offline TomH

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #400 on: 05/03/2016 02:48 AM »
It is now law that the Europa mission will use SLS.

Can you cite the bill that requires that, please? I know there were a lot of people hyping it, but I just don't remember any legislation to that effect. If I missed that, I would like to read what it says. Thanks.

Online TrevorMonty

Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #401 on: 05/03/2016 02:59 AM »
For Orion missions will ESA be providing service module for free?. I assume that buys them one or two seats.


Online Thorny

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #402 on: 05/03/2016 03:35 AM »
It is now law that the Europa mission will use SLS.

Can you cite the bill that requires that, please? I know there were a lot of people hyping it, but I just don't remember any legislation to that effect. If I missed that, I would like to read what it says. Thanks.

https://www.congress.gov/114/plaws/publ113/PLAW-114publ113.pdf

Public Law 114-113, December 18, 2015
Consolidated Appropriations Act 2016

"Provided further, That, of the amounts provided, $175,000,000 is for an orbiter with a lander to meet the science goals for the Jupiter Europa mission as outlined in the most recent planetary science decadal survey: Provided further, That the National Aeronautics and Space Administration shall use the Space Launch System as the launch vehicle for the Jupiter Europa mission, plan for a launch no later than 2022, and include in the fiscal year 2017 budget the 5-year funding profile necessary to achieve these goals."

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #403 on: 05/03/2016 07:39 PM »
For Orion missions will ESA be providing service module for free?. I assume that buys them one or two seats.

ESA was contributing the Service Module as part of their contribution to the ISS.  I'm not sure if that includes guaranteed crew participation on a future mission, but my guess would be it does not.

Also ESA is only designing the Service Module, building a complete unit for flight, and providing NASA the parts for a second unit.  It will be up to NASA to finish the assembly of the second unit, and to build future units.
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Offline woods170

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #404 on: 05/04/2016 10:40 AM »
For Orion missions will ESA be providing service module for free?. I assume that buys them one or two seats.

ESA was contributing the Service Module as part of their contribution to the ISS.  I'm not sure if that includes guaranteed crew participation on a future mission, but my guess would be it does not.

Also ESA is only designing the Service Module, building a complete unit for flight, and providing NASA the parts for a second unit.  It will be up to NASA to finish the assembly of the second unit, and to build future units.
Future units will be ordered from ESA within the bounds of yet another barter agreement. That barter agreement has been in-work for some time now, but the uncertainty over anything beyond EM-2 is making it hard to reach a hard agreement.

Offline oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #405 on: 05/12/2016 04:32 PM »
If I am correct, NASA was not to long ago (less than a year) saying that they had a 6 month schedule margin. But now they are saying they have a 2 month schedule margin. That would imply that historically critical path schedule has changed dramatically in the last year.

Having worked on managing critical path schedule analysis and tracking for a very complex and almost daily changing schedule on the Shuttle VAFB pad work back in the mid 80s using scheduling analysis software (at that time very advanced, and now very common). The software showed what tasks were at risk for schedule slips and what tasks were not critical. But the list of critical tasks and non-critical tasks changed weekly due to dependencies on tasks that snarled to a near stop (work site accidents, mostly on hardware damage not personnel injuries). These were not a normally estimate effect on schedule.

Such an event would be analogous to the vertical welding machine problems.

If they are eating 4 months of margin for every 12 months of work and there is 30 months to go that 2 months of margin may well disappear with a slip occurring pushing the launch date out 6 months or more into as late as Mid 2019. Unfortunately as you get closer to launch more items become critical path and less items can be ignored (from a schedule standpoint). Hopefully there is actually more margin built into the individual tasks and that margin is not being shown in the work to date of Sept. This would be done by reevaluating all the tasks and adjusting their schedule estimates since the analysis as reported a year ago. Basically the remaining tasks would be more accurately estimated than they were a year ago.

But knowing what I do about schedule management of such very complex highly interdependent tasks, the new info on schedule does not give me a warm a fuzzy feeling on them meeting the Nov 2018 launch date.

Online mike robel

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #406 on: 05/12/2016 04:59 PM »
@OldAtlas_Eguy:  If they are eating 4 months of margin for every 12 months of work and there is 30 months to go that 2 months of margin may well disappear with a slip occurring pushing the launch date out 6 months or more into as late as Mid 2019.

I won't be surprised if it gets pushed back to 2020...


Online DaveS

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #407 on: 05/12/2016 05:03 PM »
The 6 month margin in the schedule got eaten up by the problems they discovered in the new Vertical Weld Center at MAF. It took a number of months to rectify the VWC problems. So, it isn't a generic SLS flaw or anything that made a number of months disappear, it was a manufacturing hardware fault.
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Offline oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #408 on: 05/12/2016 05:21 PM »
The 6 month margin in the schedule got eaten up by the problems they discovered in the new Vertical Weld Center at MAF. It took a number of months to rectify the VWC problems. So, it isn't a generic SLS flaw or anything that made a number of months disappear, it was a manufacturing hardware fault.
The key here is that such events happen quite often in a complex long duration engineering project, hence my reference to my experience with the Shuttle VAFB pad build work. It does not take much to create a major slip from an unexpected event even on a non-critical path item. As I mentioned earlier what is on the critical path changes weekly if not daily. That 2 month schedule margin is for handling such events. Lets hope they do not have any other events as severe as the welding machine.

Offline rayleighscatter

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #409 on: 05/12/2016 10:00 PM »
If I am correct, NASA was not to long ago (less than a year) saying that they had a 6 month schedule margin. But now they are saying they have a 2 month schedule margin. That would imply that historically critical path schedule has changed dramatically in the last year.
I wouldn't read it being that's how much margin they have, but rather that's how much margin they are confident enough to exploit at this point.

Offline Retired Downrange

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« Last Edit: 05/13/2016 04:07 PM by Chris Bergin »

Offline edkyle99

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« Last Edit: 05/13/2016 04:07 PM by Chris Bergin »

Offline Proponent

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #412 on: 05/13/2016 04:29 AM »
For Orion missions will ESA be providing service module for free?. I assume that buys them one or two seats.

ESA was contributing the Service Module as part of their contribution to the ISS.  I'm not sure if that includes guaranteed crew participation on a future mission, but my guess would be it does not.

Also ESA is only designing the Service Module, building a complete unit for flight, and providing NASA the parts for a second unit.  It will be up to NASA to finish the assembly of the second unit, and to build future units.

So, essentially what seems to be happening is that part of the ISS budget is being diverted to Orion, right?

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #413 on: 05/13/2016 04:50 AM »
For Orion missions will ESA be providing service module for free?. I assume that buys them one or two seats.

ESA was contributing the Service Module as part of their contribution to the ISS.  I'm not sure if that includes guaranteed crew participation on a future mission, but my guess would be it does not.

Also ESA is only designing the Service Module, building a complete unit for flight, and providing NASA the parts for a second unit.  It will be up to NASA to finish the assembly of the second unit, and to build future units.

So, essentially what seems to be happening is that part of the ISS budget is being diverted to Orion, right?

That would appear to be the case, since ESA is doing Orion work to pay for their part of the ISS instead of doing things that contribute to scientific output on the ISS.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #414 on: 05/13/2016 04:52 AM »
Sounds like a huge waste of money. NASA should've just built it themselves in the first place. Of course, we knew that from the beginning.

It's just a move designed to maintain political support for Orion.
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Offline The Amazing Catstronaut

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #415 on: 05/13/2016 09:06 AM »
Sounds like a huge waste of money. NASA should've just built it themselves in the first place. Of course, we knew that from the beginning.

It's just a move designed to maintain political support for Orion.

How much cash is going to get misdirected on "maintenance"?

Oh well. #JourneyToMars.
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Offline The Amazing Catstronaut

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #416 on: 05/13/2016 09:09 AM »
It's not much we didn't already know, although it's good to see it getting some mainstream publicity.

[TiredOldOpinions]SLS isn't intrinsically bad, it's just intrinsically purposeless. [/TiredOldOpinions]
« Last Edit: 05/13/2016 09:10 AM by The Amazing Catstronaut »
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Offline MATTBLAK

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #417 on: 05/13/2016 09:38 AM »
If they were doing manned Lunar Sortie missions in preparation for a small manned Outpost - it would have purpose! Two manned plus two cargo missions per year would give it a decent enough flight rate to justify the expense of the standing armies of production and infrastructure. Also; 'trickle' funding has resulted in a virtual three-step development: Block 1, Block 1B and Block II. I feel that if they were going to be throwing away all this massive hardware each time (we call that expendable, eh?) then they should be shooting for the best and most powerful version from the word GO. Lifting 130, 140 or even 150 tons to LEO per launch would go a long way to justifying such a large expendable. I also believe Mars is, sadly, an unfunded Powerpoint fantasy at this point :(

But if Mars truly did enter the budgetary and political realms of possibility; the SLS with a decent flight rate and coupled with wonderfully enabling and leveraging technologies like SEP, ISRU and Propellant Depots could give mankind the Solar System. Or... We could just wait until Elon and other Commercial Superheroes get round to getting to Mars more cheaply and in their own time. It wont happen overnight; but it will happen.

Leave Mars to Space X and their ilk - build an International Lunar Outpost at the Lunar South Pole. NASA (U.S.A.) provides the Heavy Lift with SLS Block II(ish) and the Orion 'Mothership' and perhaps an ESA/JAXA/Commercial consortium builds the Manned Lunar Lander that also has a close 'stablemate' for cargo; as Soyuz has the Progress.

But you could still do the Lunar Outpost with lesser launchers than SLS if SLS gets canned - Vulcan/ACES, Falcon Heavy, Ariane 6 and the H-IIB could all contribute with distributed launch salvos per launch windows. It can be done - smarter folk than me have written books and papers on this stuff, you know...
« Last Edit: 05/13/2016 01:54 PM by MATTBLAK »
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Offline The Amazing Catstronaut

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #418 on: 05/13/2016 12:55 PM »
If they were doing manned Lunar Sortie missions in preparation for a small manned Outpost - it would have purpose! Two manned plus two cargo missions per year would give it a decent enough flight rate to justify the expense of the standing armies of production and infrastructure. Also; 'trickle' funding has resulted in a virtual three-step development: Block 1, Block 1B and Block II. I feel that if they were going to be throwing away all this massive hardware each time (we call that expendable, eh?) then they should be shooting for the best and most powerful version from the word GO. Lifting 130, 140 or even 150 tons to LEO per launch would go a long way to justifying such a large expendable. I also believe Mars is, sadly, an unfunded Powerpoint fantasy at this point :(


Agreed, SLS is perfectly scaled for a lunar program and would be an enabler for a manned return to the moon. It's too expensive to go to Mars with expendables but you can go to the moon with expendables. Why not? It would justify SLS having a flight rate of value, without requiring so many launches that it should be bank breaking beyond what SLS already is.  SLS at least makes an Apollo-like program repeatable, certainly enables large payloads to cislunar and perhaps even a minor lunar surface outpost.

However, it's not going to be used for any of those things yet, which is eyewatering. I can see a shift to lunar for SLS happening eventually, but it's not going to happen in this tumultuous year.
« Last Edit: 05/13/2016 04:36 PM by The Amazing Catstronaut »
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Offline Rocket Science

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #419 on: 05/13/2016 01:07 PM »
I'm a baby boomer and I don't recall a non-tumultuous year since I was born... This is normal, they either get on with it or they don't... Just sayin' ;)
« Last Edit: 05/13/2016 02:06 PM by Rocket Science »
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