Author Topic: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission  (Read 178039 times)

Offline Nomadd

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #40 on: 01/16/2020 01:47 am »
So, the lunar surface then. Anyways, you have to consider the affect of the risk not just the likelihood. Even if an in space containment facility is 1000x more likely to lose containment, the consequences of losing containment in a terrestrial facility has a pretty good chance of being >1000x worse.

As far as the experts. There is a long history of scientists playing with stuff that they shouldn't and in an unsafe manner. Sometimes, being an expert makes you over-confident in your science and your own skills and add in their innate curiosity overcoming any sense of risk.

Having opinions can sure be fun.

 I made a pretty good living cleaning up after world class experts decided proper procedures and protocols were for lesser beings. Not that I don't think the threat is vastly overblown, but if you've decided there is a threat, I believe deciding to risk an orbital lab and a half dozen crew instead of the entire planet might not be unreasonable.
« Last Edit: 01/16/2020 03:25 am by Nomadd »
Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who couldn't hear the music.

Offline edzieba

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #41 on: 01/16/2020 12:11 pm »
BSL-4 labs already deal with extremely contagious pathogens on a regular basis. I'd be far more concerned with the release of one of those than of a hypothetical pathogen that has not had the benefit of several megayears to adapt to local vectors (those squishy meatbags that like to think they run the place).
Similar to the fallacious 'grey goo' apocalypse arguments: any 'grey goo' would have to simultaneously outcompete the 'green go' that has adapted to every available niche with extreme efficiency, or would have to survive in niches that by definition do not compete with existing organisms. Or the idea that "pathogens from permafrost" are an as or more significant threat compared to recently mutated pathogens because current organisms have 'forgotten' how to fight them: current organisms (and their DNA) are heaps of legacy cruft retaining features that have not been relevant for millenia but are not sufficiently detrimental to have been selected against (see: notable exceptions such as Sickle Cell Anemia defending against the Malaria parasite, but being a net detriment in an environment without Malaria risk, so only a common condition in those areas where Malaria has a high incidence of selecting against non-sickle-cell carriers). On the contrary, any permafrost pathogens (or hypothetical extraterrestrial pathogens with common ancestry provided by panspermia or meteroite transplantation) will have been 'stuck' evolutionarily and unable to keep pace with the advancements in immune systems terrestrial organisms have been making in their constant competition with terrestrial pathogens.
As a crude analogy: a Roman phalanx is not going to be terrifying effective against a modern military because a modern military has 'forgotten how to fight' them.

Offline Star One

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #42 on: 01/16/2020 12:22 pm »
1% will call it a cosmic plague come to kill us.

I didn’t know this book was that well known these days!

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Andromeda_Strain
« Last Edit: 01/16/2020 12:24 pm by Star One »

Offline jbenton

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #43 on: 01/21/2020 07:35 am »
Mars sample return mission plans begin to take shape, dated July 28
Quote
...

The plan as it currently exists, and as he presented at the MEPAG meeting, calls for two launches in 2026. The first, in the summer, would be the NASA lander, followed in the fall by the ESA orbiter. Both would take non-standard trajectories to get to Mars, with the orbiter getting there in about a year with the assistance of solar electric propulsion, while the lander would take two years to get to Mars.

While launch windows for Mars open for several weeks every 26 months, Watzin said not every opportunity is feasible for the pair of Mars sample return missions. “Propulsion demands are enormous,” he said. “There’s a couple opportunities where the energetics are manageable for a reasonable budget and reasonable technology. The rest of the opportunities require the invention of new things.”

...

Why does the lander need to take two years to get to Mars? Shouldn't it only require 6 months? Is there an advantage to taking the long road?

Offline faramund

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #44 on: 01/21/2020 08:56 pm »
Mars sample return mission plans begin to take shape, dated July 28
Quote
...

The plan as it currently exists, and as he presented at the MEPAG meeting, calls for two launches in 2026. The first, in the summer, would be the NASA lander, followed in the fall by the ESA orbiter. Both would take non-standard trajectories to get to Mars, with the orbiter getting there in about a year with the assistance of solar electric propulsion, while the lander would take two years to get to Mars.

While launch windows for Mars open for several weeks every 26 months, Watzin said not every opportunity is feasible for the pair of Mars sample return missions. “Propulsion demands are enormous,” he said. “There’s a couple opportunities where the energetics are manageable for a reasonable budget and reasonable technology. The rest of the opportunities require the invention of new things.”

...

Why does the lander need to take two years to get to Mars? Shouldn't it only require 6 months? Is there an advantage to taking the long road?

Its the electric propulsion system - such systems are very efficient in terms of propellant used, but its used extremely slowly, so it takes longer to get to Mars.

Offline jbenton

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #45 on: 01/22/2020 05:25 pm »
Why does the lander need to take two years to get to Mars? Shouldn't it only require 6 months? Is there an advantage to taking the long road?
Its the electric propulsion system - such systems are very efficient in terms of propellant used, but its used extremely slowly, so it takes longer to get to Mars.

That makes perfect sense, but leaves me a little confused:

The orbiter/ERV needs SEP for obvious reasons, but why the lander?

Doesn't the combined spacecraft/heatshield/skycrane/lander/MAV/rover have roughly the same launch mass as the Mars 2020 mission?*
Mars 2020 will launch on an Atlas V 541; it seems unlikely that there won't be an affordable, proven EELV-class launcher available in 2026 that can match AV 541 performance.**
SEP allows a smaller and (presumably) cheaper rocket to cast a payload to a farther distance, but I don't know of a cheaper (American) rocket with the needed 5m fairing.***

So, adding SEP to the cruise stage seems to me to be just adding cost, complexity and risk to an already proven design, unless I’m missing something.

I was also surprised because I thought that – if they wanted the ERV to use the 2028/2029 close approach the return the samples - touch-down in 2028 seemed to be cutting it close. How much time the fetch rover needs depends on how small the landing ellipse will be and how fast the rover can reliably travel.  The only reason I could think of as to why a later arrival time would be desirable, is if they want to keep the land mission as short as possible. Since everything’s solar-powered, they might want to reduce the risk of encountering a major dust storm. Although, I was under the understanding that the baseline was to launch the canister as soon as the samples are collected and have the orbiter sit with them until close-approach comes, which would mitigate this concern.

* The legacy sky crane carries up to 1050 kg of landed payload, so the lander, MAV and fetch rover must all fit into that mass budget. Curiosity/MSL was 899 kg, and together with the EDL system and cruise stage, had a launch mass of 3839 kg. The Mars 2020 rover maxes out the sky crane at 1050 kg, assuming that everything else has the same mass as its predecessor, the whole spacecraft should have a launch mass of 3990 kg. Using the same EDL and cruise stage, the landed-assets component of MSR should have a launch mass of 3990 kg as well.
**between Atlas V, Falcon 9 FT Blk 5, Falcon Heavy, Vulcan-Centaur, and OmegA
*** Antares is the only active or in-development Delta II-class domestic LV available, (that I know of) but I think it only has a single fairing option just under 4m wide
« Last Edit: 01/22/2020 10:54 pm by jbenton »

Online ccdengr

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #46 on: 01/22/2020 10:45 pm »
The orbiter/ERV needs SEP for obvious reasons, but why the lander?
I don't think the lander has SEP -- all the diagrams I could find show a standard cruise stage -- so I can only imagine that the 2026 window has high C3 requirements and they need an EGA or some other gravity assist trajectory to get to Mars.  I haven't seen any analysis on this though.

Offline Dalhousie

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #47 on: 03/02/2020 01:52 am »
The orbiter/ERV needs SEP for obvious reasons, but why the lander?
I don't think the lander has SEP -- all the diagrams I could find show a standard cruise stage -- so I can only imagine that the 2026 window has high C3 requirements and they need an EGA or some other gravity assist trajectory to get to Mars.  I haven't seen any analysis on this though.

2026 window is about the maximum energy possible for a Mars transfer
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Offline dalecampbell

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #48 on: 03/02/2020 11:50 pm »
https://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2019/nasa-esa-latest-msr-plan.html

The above article may help to describe the potential MSR mission orbital plans. I don't know how much plans may have changed since then:

[Zubenelgenubi: This is copyrighted material. Brief quotes are allowed. Copying large sections or the whole article is not. That's why I deleted everything else.

Thanks for finding the blog article. We missed it when it was published.]
« Last Edit: 03/03/2020 01:54 am by zubenelgenubi »

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #49 on: 03/12/2020 11:18 pm »
Cross-post re: ExoMars launch delay from 2020 to 2022 and possible consequences for Mars Sample Return:
This is a bad development (but not unexpected). The knock-on effects can be serious too. A couple that immediately come to mind:

-it will cost ESA a lot of money that won't be available for other programs (same thing happened with MSL Curiosity slipping from 2009 to 2011, which was a $400+ million hit to the budget)
-ESA does not gain valuable experience with rover operations and design, this rover is not validated

Because ESA is expected to provide the fetch rover for the Mars sample return mission that NASA will launch in 2026, both those factors can affect those plans. I expect that NASA may now look at producing its own fetch rover for the mission.
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Offline redliox

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #50 on: 03/14/2020 07:03 pm »
Cross-post re: ExoMars launch delay from 2020 to 2022 and possible consequences for Mars Sample Return:
This is a bad development (but not unexpected). The knock-on effects can be serious too. A couple that immediately come to mind:

-it will cost ESA a lot of money that won't be available for other programs (same thing happened with MSL Curiosity slipping from 2009 to 2011, which was a $400+ million hit to the budget)
-ESA does not gain valuable experience with rover operations and design, this rover is not validated

Because ESA is expected to provide the fetch rover for the Mars sample return mission that NASA will launch in 2026, both those factors can affect those plans. I expect that NASA may now look at producing its own fetch rover for the mission.

Although a lot of design work into the current MAV/ERV scheme already, this might be a reason for a direct, single vehicle from Mars to Earth.
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Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #51 on: 04/21/2020 08:44 pm »
Northrop Grumman's two-stage, solid-fueled design chosen for NASA's Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV):
NASA narrows design for rocket to launch samples off of Mars, dated April 20

Sole-source procurement announcement here.  (Link is also in the article.)
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Offline redliox

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #52 on: 04/25/2020 02:34 am »
Northrop Grumman's two-stage, solid-fueled design chosen for NASA's Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV):
NASA narrows design for rocket to launch samples off of Mars, dated April 20

Sole-source procurement announcement here.  (Link is also in the article.)

Nice they made a decision.  I'd prefer ISRU but they do have a point on utilizing proven tech the military's used since the Cold War.  So a 2-stage solid rocket to put the samples into LMO.  I'd love to see how the lander this'll be attached to will be like.
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Offline raketa

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #53 on: 04/25/2020 03:51 am »
Mission is so complicated, I doubt that will cost just 7B.
i am hoping NASA has Plan B and ask Spacex to carry on return flight of Starship.
Could even arrive earlier than 2031.

Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #54 on: 04/25/2020 11:21 am »
Northrop Grumman's two-stage, solid-fueled design chosen for NASA's Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV):
NASA narrows design for rocket to launch samples off of Mars, dated April 20

Sole-source procurement announcement here.  (Link is also in the article.)

Nice they made a decision.  I'd prefer ISRU but they do have a point on utilizing proven tech the military's used since the Cold War.  So a 2-stage solid rocket to put the samples into LMO.  I'd love to see how the lander this'll be attached to will be like.

Think it will be similar to the Phoenix lander.

Offline bolun

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #55 on: 06/16/2020 04:53 pm »
Martian rover motors ahead

Quote
European engineers, together with Canada, are working on the technologies needed to find and retrieve samples from Mars, as part of ESA’s plans to send material from the Red Planet to Earth.

The Sample Fetch Rover will need to navigate autonomously, detect tubes of samples collected and packed by an earlier NASA rover, pick them up and return them to Earth.

ESA has selected Airbus for the next stage of the rover’s development. Work has been underway at their site in Stevenage, UK, since July 2018 to scope out and establish the feasibility of the rover concept. As part of this work, Airbus are coordinating industries from Europe and Canada to develop rover technologies.

The ESA Sample Fetch Rover will form part of the Mars Sample Return campaign, with hardware provided by ESA and NASA, which aims to deliver material from the martian surface to Earth by 2031.

Offline RonM

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #56 on: 06/16/2020 08:32 pm »


SpaceX's has vastly greater capabilities and intentions toward Mars transportation than this 7 billion dollar tiny sample return scheme.
At some point in time, it will become clear that spending literally multibillions of dollars to gather and return these samples is astronomically wasteful.   

We aren't yet at the point for most people, or for the decision makers at NASA, JPL and the US gov't.

It's interesting to note that SX *HAS* reached that point (to a degree) with respect to launching payload to the Moon, transporting astronauts to LEO, and developing a human lunar lander.

Mission planers are not going to take a chance on Starship for an expensive Mars sample return mission until they see Starship land on Mars and return. May seem unfair, but there have been many spacecraft ideas over the years that never even got past the planning stage.

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #57 on: 06/16/2020 09:49 pm »
As the member who started this thread:
I count three attempts in 60 replies, inclusive, to hijack the MSR program thread into a "This plan is stupid; I have faith that future-SpaceX will perform said tasks, and more, more quickly, and less expensively."

There is a whole, very busy, section of the NSF forum dedicated to SpaceX.

Moderator:
Take assertions about "the future of SpaceX on Mars" there.  It doesn't belong here.
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Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #58 on: 06/16/2020 10:49 pm »
(anybody remember that Red Dragon was going to do this mission? Anybody?)
I remember. (Pepperidge Farm remembers, too.) :)

FYI for newer members:
We've got multiple old threads related to Red Dragon in the SpaceX section of the forum.
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Offline ulm_atms

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Re: NASA/ESA - Mars Sample Return mission
« Reply #59 on: 06/16/2020 11:03 pm »
As the member who started this thread:
I count three attempts in 60 replies, inclusive, to hijack the MSR program thread into a "This plan is stupid; I have faith that future-SpaceX will perform said tasks, and more, more quickly, and less expensively."

There is a whole, very busy, section of the NSF forum dedicated to SpaceX.

Moderator:
Take assertions about "the future of SpaceX on Mars" there.  It doesn't belong here.

This is why I've pretty much given up on NSF. I was involved in the last planetary science decadal survey which recommended Mars sample return (starting with the MAX-C rover). I was also involved in the planetary science decadal survey midterm review, which is where NASA (finally) revealed some of their further work on MSR. I happen to know a bit about how all this came about, why it came about, the difficulties of doing it, its importance, and why certain choices don't get made (anybody remember that Red Dragon was going to do this mission? Anybody?). But whenever I think about explaining that here, somebody is always ready to jump in with "But... Starship!" It's just not worth my time.

It is depressing to hear you say that...but completely understandable.  You are one of the most knowledgeable people on here when it comes to planetary sciences.  Your insight is most appreciated and I always enjoy reading your posts.

I wonder if we can L2 a planetary sciences thread to let people who actually know something of the inner workings say things without OMG SPACEX STARSHIP NOTHING ELSE MATTERS!!!!!

Or at least something like the political threads.....

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