Author Topic: Kistler/Orbital divorce  (Read 13863 times)

Offline simonbp

Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #20 on: 05/01/2007 10:30 AM »
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ianmga - 30/4/2007  9:04 PM

Would it make sense for ATK to buy Kistler from Rocketplane and take over the development the vehicle? It would seem that it would give them an entry into this segment. I'm open to flame, as I'm clueless about these business issues.

It wouldn't make sense yet, with zero flights of a radical new design. Instead, ATK is doing what NASA is doing: giving RpK a bit of money/help, and seeing what they can do with it. If the K-1 flies successfully (and it's still an if), then it would make much sense for ATK to snap it up...

Simon ;)

Offline marsavian

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RE: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #21 on: 05/01/2007 11:18 AM »
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docmordrid - 30/4/2007  7:56 PM

This was resolved shortly after the original story;

http://www.space.com/news/060926_cots_rocketplane.html

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Rocketplane Kistler Says It Has New Strategic Partner in the Wings

WASHINGTON - Rocketplane Kistler President Randy Brinkley said Sept. 25 that the Oklahoma City-based company already has found another firm willing to replace Orbital Sciences Corp. as prime contractor for the K-1 reusable launch vehicle.

"We're very comfortable with the new partner and think it's a good fit," Brinkley said.

Brinkley declined to identify Rocketplane Kistler's new partner but said that the unnamed U.S. company would take over Orbital Sciences' systems engineering and integration role on the K-1 and make a strategic investment "equal to or greater" than the $10 million Orbital had planned to bring to the table.

http://hobbyspace.com/nucleus/index.php?itemid=2741

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Rocketplane Kistler and ATK Announce Agreement for K-1 Launch Vehicle and COTS Program

ATK Will Lead Vehicle Development, Vehicle Assembly, Integration and Test, and Launch and Landing Site Operations

Oklahoma City and Salt Lake City, November 8, 2006 – Rocketplane Kistler (RpK) and Alliant Techsystems (NYSE: ATK) announced today that ATK will become the lead contractor for RpK’s K-1 launch vehicle, which was recently awarded a Space Act Agreement by NASA for the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program. The K-1 is a fully reusable space transportation system designed to provide cost-effective and reliable transport of cargo and science payloads to and from the International Space Station (ISS).

Andrews Space was the partner suggested in the first link while ATK is building the final design.

http://www.andrewsspace.com/news.php?subsection=MjIw


Offline Jim

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #22 on: 05/01/2007 11:46 AM »
Andrews Space is supply the spacecraft and is performing mission planning and ops.  ATK is responsible for system engineering and launch ops

Offline NotGncDude

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #23 on: 05/01/2007 03:18 PM »
Andrews is also doing the aerodynamics analysis

Offline Christine

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #24 on: 05/01/2007 11:57 PM »
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ianmga - 30/4/2007  9:21 PM
This ain't no joke. There is a lot of people working hard for the K1 to flight. Sadly, those people cost money.

And I sincerely hope they get the investors they need to employ them. But with their only likely customer now showing their true colours and buying ISS cargo through a no-bid contract with russia, I wouldn't let my capital touch them with a 40ft bargepole.

The only other major buyer I can think of for K-1 launch services is Globalstar 2, but they'll probably end up buying Soyuz.

Online wannamoonbase

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #25 on: 05/02/2007 12:47 AM »
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Christine - 1/5/2007  7:57 PM

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ianmga - 30/4/2007  9:21 PM
This ain't no joke. There is a lot of people working hard for the K1 to flight. Sadly, those people cost money.

And I sincerely hope they get the investors they need to employ them. But with their only likely customer now showing their true colours and buying ISS cargo through a no-bid contract with russia, I wouldn't let my capital touch them with a 40ft bargepole.

The only other major buyer I can think of for K-1 launch services is Globalstar 2, but they'll probably end up buying Soyuz.

I am sure no one is more uncomfortable with depending on Russian cargo launches than NASA and certainly if SpaceX and/or Kistler can provide a domestic Cargo service then NASA will buy all they need.

A question I have is where did the ATK interest in Kistler come from?  Is it strictly business a job to make money on or to develop integration experience for future vehicles such as the Ares V or the EDS.  Or did the ATK NASA good ol' boys network ask for help to make the K1 viable?
SpaceX, just a few things planned for 2018: FH, Starlink Prototypes, Block 5, Dragon 2, Increased launch rate.

Offline yinzer

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #26 on: 05/02/2007 01:17 AM »
ATK could also think that if in the near future it starts looking like COTS has no chance of providing access to the ISS, people might start looking at something involving EELVs and an HTV- or ATV-style spacecraft.  That would have the potential to be very, very bad for the Ares I.  Bad enough that it may be worth kicking in some money to keep RpK looking viable until the Ares I makes it a little further down the design process.
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Offline aero313

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #27 on: 05/02/2007 02:22 AM »
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wannamoonbase - 1/5/2007  8:47 PM
A question I have is where did the ATK interest in Kistler come from?  

ATK is currently printing money.   They manufacture something like 80% of the ammunition purchased by all federal and state organizations.  That's where the money for Swales came from.  That's where the money for their small launch vehicle came from.  That's where the money to buy Microcraft and GASL came from.  Couple this with the rapidly dwindling market for solid propellant systems, and ATK is smart to be looking for alternate business areas.  Whether they can successfully become a prime is a different question.  The have not demonstrated that ability to date.  Integrating the diverse companies they've bought is a major problem.  Lockmart, Boeing, and Orbital have not fully done it yet, and it's what, ten years since the LockMart merger?

Offline Danderman

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #28 on: 06/02/2007 05:21 PM »
So, is the RpK plan to launch the K1 next year still on track?

Offline NotGncDude

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #29 on: 06/02/2007 09:50 PM »
I think they've been scheduled for 2009 for quite some time. In any case I am sure the funding shortage will push back the schedule. I am pretty sure there will be no flights in 2008.

Offline Antares

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #30 on: 06/02/2007 10:53 PM »
The integrated NASA program schedule still shows them in 2008.  I agree that's not realistic, but that's what their Space Act Agreement called out.
If I like something on NSF, it's probably because I know it to be accurate.  Every once in a while, it's just something I agree with.  Facts generally receive the former.

Online wannamoonbase

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #31 on: 06/03/2007 02:58 AM »
Given that we are just about 50% through 07 I would bet that neither SpaceX or Kistler launch a vehicle before the end of 08, in fact getting one on a pad would be very impressive.
SpaceX, just a few things planned for 2018: FH, Starlink Prototypes, Block 5, Dragon 2, Increased launch rate.

Online MKremer

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #32 on: 06/03/2007 07:27 AM »
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wannamoonbase - 2/6/2007  9:58 PM

Given that we are just about 50% through 07 I would bet that neither SpaceX or Kistler launch a vehicle before the end of 08, in fact getting one on a pad would be very impressive.

Just wondering how that will affect their contracts, and if so, could Congressional space committees get involved and hold hearings.
(Congressional hearings concerning private contractors failing to meet fairly expensive contracts - especially if they're involving NASA - aren't considered very good PR no matter how corporate spokespeople and executives try to spin them.)

Offline Jim

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Re: Kistler/Orbital divorce
« Reply #33 on: 06/03/2007 09:08 AM »
They technically don't have contracts, just an agreement.  The agreement says they get pay for certain milestones at certain times.  If they don't meet them, they don't get the money

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