« Last post by DanClemmensen on Today at 04:15 pm »
There are only enough leftover Shuttle SRB parts to last through Artemis VIII, so something new is needed anyway. BOLE makes as much sense as anything else unless SLS is terminated before then.Sorry, but you are wrong and Ron is right. A single Saturn V launch carried ALL the elements to put 2 humans on the surface of the Moon and return them (and the CMP) safely back to Earth: CSM and the lander.That feels like an apples-to-oranges comparison, though. The reason the lander won't be co-manifested is more than the difficulties it would cause with SLS: It's also because NASA wants a more capable lander. If you force a lander into the profile of the LM, you're going to get another LM.
A single SLS launch will NEVER carry ALL the elements to put humans on the surface of the Moon and return them safely back to Earth. Not even Block 1B or even Block 2 will be capable of doing so. Every proposed lander is either too large or too heavy to be co-manifested with Orion on a Block 1B or Block 2 launch.
And yes, I am quite aware of the fact that the launch vehicle does not actually land the crew on the surface of the Moon. The stuff it carries does that. But that does not change the fact that a single Saturn V launch fully enabled a crewed landing on the lunar surface, whereas a single SLS launch will never enable a crewed landing on the lunar surface.
I suppose this raises the question, though, of why NASA should bother developing upgrades to the SLS in the first place, when it's only going to be manifested for crewed flights. Adding EUS and BOLE SRB's will allow you to co-manifest...what? Gateway modules? But you could launch those up on a Falcon Heavy for less than the EUS stage alone (let alone its $5-10 billion development price tag!) will cost.