Author Topic: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5  (Read 172726 times)

Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #701 on: 11/16/2023 07:28 pm »
Hey @VSECOTSPE, please read the tea leafs for us.

With Catherine Koerner replacing Jim Free as the head of ESDM Directorate, after he become the new NASA Associate Administrator.

Does it change anything with the course of the Artemis program? Also how well will Jim Free fit in as the Associate Administrator?

Bob Cabana is retiring and will be replaced by Jim Free as Associate Administrator (on January 1st):


Offline VSECOTSPE

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #702 on: 11/16/2023 09:05 pm »
Hey @VSECOTSPE, please read the tea leafs for us.

With Catherine Koerner replacing Jim Free as the head of ESDM Directorate, after he become the new NASA Associate Administrator.

Does it change anything with the course of the Artemis program? Also how well will Jim Free fit in as the Associate Administrator?

Short answer:  I donít see significant changes from any of these moves.

Long answer (ESMD AA):  ESMDís major challenge in the coming years is getting multiple systems developed (shorthand for designed, built, tested, and integrated).  Free was a bad match for that challenge as the only prior systems-level development experience that he had was with Orion, which should be an MIT case study in how not to do systems development.  The same is true of Koerner ó her only major systems-level development experience is with Orion.  So whether their last name is Free or Koerner, the last thing ESMD needs is another Orion-trained development manager.

Koerner has a couple other experiences that Free does not have.  For a while, she worked the ISS Commercial Resupply Services contracts after they were established, which theoretically might make her more amenable to commercial or other alternatives to Orion/SLS, if and when that day comes.  But as another former Orion program manager like Free, Orion will always be her baby, and I donít see her voluntarily sidelining or creating competition for it.  In fact, I expect her do what Free has done and look the other way when Orion cost growth continues eating the budget for other Artemis elements, either out of loyalty to Orion or because the Orion experience didnít teach her how to bring budgets and programs under control.

Her other noteworthy experience is as a JSC flight director.  This is my opinion, but I donít think working operations (astronauts, flight directors, mission managers, etc.) qualifies folks for development leadership and management positions.  Donít get me wrong, operators should have a voice in the development process, especially when it comes to setting requirements.  But being an operator doesnít provide experience in the meat-and-potatoes of development:  analyzing alternatives, formulating budgets and program plans, setting requirements, writing procurements, running downselects, spotting and addressing technical/budget/schedule issues early on, etc.  ESMD leadership is already a retirement home for former flight directors like Amit Kshatriya (DAA for Moon to Mars).  Elevating another former flight director to another ESMD leadership role doesnít provide ESMD with the prior successful development experience it desperately needs.

If Nelson/NASA was serious about development success, then Kathy Leuders would have been running ESMD the past couple years, not Free.  She and Alan Lindenmoyer are the only two NASA human space flight development program managers (CCDev and COTS, respectively) in decades to have brought major systems to flight on something resembling their original budget and performance expectations.  Or Nelson/NASA would seek out successful development experience from the military, industry, or the science side of NASA.

Long answer (NASA AAA):  While the job description of an associate administrator in any given NASA mission directorate is straightforward to define, the job of the NASA Assistant Associate Administrator really depends on who is sitting the Administrator and Deputy Administratorís chairs.  Nelson is a politician, so he really needed someone who was strong technically, which he got in Pam Melroy.  That probably means that Free, who besides Orion also previously served as the Glenn Center Director, will be the voice of the institution in the triumvirate at the top of NASA.  (You could imagine the political/technical/institution roles getting swapped between these positions ó and they have been historically ó with a different set of individuals in this triumvirate.)

Cabana as a former KSC director was probably also the voice of the institution before Free, so I donít think replacing a former KSC director with a former GRC Director will change much.  Iím sure he doesnít remember, but I butted heads with Cabana pre-COTS.  But I have to admit that Cabana eventually did do an admirable job preparing KSC for the future and opening it up to more users.  Glenn has long been a neglected center, but I donít know of anything of import that Free did there while director.  So Iím not sure Free will bring anything to the position that Cabana didnít already provide, and as a former Orion manager, if and when the time comes, he may just be another, now higher voice in the chain of command arguing against Orion/SLS alternatives or drawdowns.

Before he returned to NASA as ESMD AA, Free had an LLC with his wife called Lead Off the X, under which he gave inspirational business talks and the like.  Iíve seen other former center directors and managers go the touchy-feely route, which is not a replacement for hard-nosed program management.  Just my speculation, but I think Nelson is taken in by the ďwisdomĒ that Free dispenses from those old practiced talks and thatís why Free is now in the NASA AAA position.  If I were Nelson, I would have given Free the boot as Orion/SLS costs continued to rise, not kept him around to tell me feel-good tales of times gone by.

Obviously, I bring a lot of (hard-won, Iíd argue) biases to how these positions should be staffed.  Other folks may have different insights on the positions or personalities involved.

FWIW...

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #703 on: 11/16/2023 10:27 pm »
I'm optimistic her experience with commercial cargo will be helpful in the world we live in today.
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To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #704 on: 11/17/2023 02:41 am »
I hadn't listened to this before but at 47m to 50m of this video of about a year ago, Musk talks about a base on the Moon. He said that Starship was built to build a city on Mars or the Moon and that we should (ideally) build a city on the Moon. He also says that each Starship cost about $100M (with a marginal cost of $60M). He also says that we should probably get to the Moon before Mars. 

« Last Edit: 11/17/2023 03:01 am by yg1968 »

Offline yg1968

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Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #706 on: 11/30/2023 05:24 pm »
NASA Artemis Programs: Crewed Moon Landing Faces Multiple Challenges
https://www.gao.gov/products/gao-24-106256

https://twitter.com/SpcPlcyOnline/status/1730282287969775751

Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #708 on: 12/01/2023 10:21 pm »
https://twitter.com/SpaceNews_Inc/status/1730576293517721729
Increases likelihood Artemis III becomes a Gateway Mission and Artemis IV for the first landing. 

https://twitter.com/SpaceNews_Inc/status/1730576293517721729
Increases likelihood Artemis III becomes a Gateway Mission and Artemis IV for the first landing.

Maybe, but if they just delay A3 instead you are probably ONLY waiting on the lander. Having A4 be the first landing means you are waiting on the lander, EUS, ML2, and possibly I-HAB. It will be a tough call at the end of the day.

Offline clongton

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #710 on: 12/02/2023 04:46 pm »
...but if they just delay A3 instead you are probably ONLY waiting on the lander.

As if the lander were the ONLY possible reason for a delay in the launch of the Artemis 3 mission. I guess it must not even be conceivable that there might be a problem with the launch vehicle, the spacecraft, the MLP or the GSE? You know, the launch vehicle that has only flown once or the spacecraft that has flown twice, once as a boiler plate and once as a partially complete vehicle, the spacecraft that still does not have a life support system? Those vehicles? I guess they're just fine and could never, ever, cause a delay. Is that what you're saying?
« Last Edit: 12/02/2023 04:50 pm by clongton »
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Online DanClemmensen

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #711 on: 12/02/2023 04:58 pm »
...but if they just delay A3 instead you are probably ONLY waiting on the lander.

As if the lander were the ONLY possible reason for a delay in the launch of the Artemis 3 mission. I guess it must not even be conceivable that there might be a problem with the launch vehicle, the spacecraft, the MLP or the GSE? You know, the launch vehicle that has only flown once or the spacecraft that has flown twice, once as a boiler plate and once as a partially complete vehicle, the spacecraft that still does not have a life support system? Those vehicles? I guess they're just fine and could never, ever, cause a delay. Is that what you're saying?
I am shocked, SHOCKED it tell you, that you could question SLS/Orion. (But you forgot to mention that NASA is re-evaluating the Orion heat shield, or that Orion has never flown with functional docking hardware and will never test its docking hardware until it's in NRHO on Artemis III.)

Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #712 on: 12/02/2023 05:01 pm »
It should be noted that the GAO's early 2027 date is essentially an educated guess based on the history of other programs. Although it seems realistic, the early 2027 date isn't an official date. Furthermore, Gateway is currently scheduled to launch in late 2025 and to arrive to NRHO, 10 months later in late 2026. So early 2027 is only a few months after Gateway is scheduled to arrive to NRHO, assuming that Gateway doesn't suffer any more delays which seems unlikely. Furthermore, Artemis IV is currently scheduled for 2028 assuming that it doesn't suffer any more delays which also seems unlikely.
« Last Edit: 12/02/2023 05:08 pm by yg1968 »

Online DanClemmensen

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #713 on: 12/02/2023 05:12 pm »
It should be noted that the GAO's early 2027 date is essentially an educated guess based on the history of other programs. Although it seems realistic, the early 2027 date isn't an official date. Furthermore, Gateway is currently scheduled to launch in late 2025 and to arrive to NRHO, 10 months later in late 2026. So early 2027 is only a few months after Gateway is scheduled to arrive to NRHO in late 2026, assuming that Gateway doesn't suffer any more delays which seems unlikely. Furthermore, Artemis IV is currently scheduled for 2028 assuming that it doesn't suffer any more delays which also seems unlikely.
Sorry, but I cannot parse the double (triple?) negatives.
Do you mean that you think Gateway will meet the late 2026 date or do you think it will slip?
Do you mean you think Artemis III will arrive in early 2027, or do you think it will slip?
Do you mean you think Artemis IV will meet the 2028 data or do you think it will slip?

(Please note: I suspect my own prose is at least as ambiguous, so please don't take offense.)

Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #714 on: 12/02/2023 05:20 pm »
It should be noted that the GAO's early 2027 date is essentially an educated guess based on the history of other programs. Although it seems realistic, the early 2027 date isn't an official date. Furthermore, Gateway is currently scheduled to launch in late 2025 and to arrive to NRHO, 10 months later in late 2026. So early 2027 is only a few months after Gateway is scheduled to arrive to NRHO in late 2026, assuming that Gateway doesn't suffer any more delays which seems unlikely. Furthermore, Artemis IV is currently scheduled for 2028 assuming that it doesn't suffer any more delays which also seems unlikely.
Sorry, but I cannot parse the double (triple?) negatives.
Do you mean that you think Gateway will meet the late 2026 date or do you think it will slip?
Do you mean you think Artemis III will arrive in early 2027, or do you think it will slip?
Do you mean you think Artemis IV will meet the 2028 data or do you think it will slip?

(Please note: I suspect my own prose is at least as ambiguous, so please don't take offense.)

There was no triple negatives. I am just saying that the early 2027 date for HLS Starship isn't official (it's still officially 2025) and that the dates that are official for Gateway (2026) and Artemis IV (2028) are also likely to slip. In other words, NASA should keep Artemis III and IV as they are. I don't see the need to change things at this point.

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #715 on: 12/02/2023 05:56 pm »
What would it take for NASA to more openly acknowledge that the development schedule uncertainties for many of the Artemis program elements are large enough that the currently planned objectives and dates for the Artemis III and IV missions are only nominal?
I'm guessing it will be expedient to defer doing that until after the Artemis II crew are safely home again.
ó 𝐬𝐝𝐒𝐝𝐬 ó

Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #716 on: 12/02/2023 06:04 pm »
What would it take for NASA to more openly acknowledge that the development schedule uncertainties for many of the Artemis program elements are large enough that the currently planned objectives and dates for the Artemis III and IV missions are only nominal?
I'm guessing it will be expedient to defer doing that until after the Artemis II crew are safely home again.

For some reason, in the last couple of years, NASA has been reassessing its target dates for Artemis on the federal budget dates.

Offline VSECOTSPE

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #717 on: 12/07/2023 04:16 am »

DARPA picks 14 companies for lunar architecture study

Quote
Neither DARPA nor the companies disclosed the value of the LunA-10 awards, but the solicitation released in August said selected companies would be eligible for agreements valued at no more than $1 million each.

https://spacenews.com/darpa-picks-14-companies-for-lunar-architecture-study/

Offline VSECOTSPE

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Re: NASA's Artemis Program Updates and Discussion Thread 5
« Reply #718 on: 12/08/2023 12:51 am »

NTY:  NASAís Moon Race Is Running Late

Quote
NASA says it will land astronauts on the moon again in December 2025. But it will almost certainly miss that target, perhaps by years.

Hereís why NASA is behind schedule

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2023/12/06/science/nasa-moon-landing-artemis-delay.html

Offline yg1968

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