Author Topic: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview  (Read 446601 times)

Offline alexw

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #280 on: 12/10/2010 02:02 am »
Unless they can pull out a low-cost SDLV option to keep them all funded, between now and then.
I wonder where they might find one of those...
   AJAX? Or a 5 or 6 SSME core, possibly using GEM-60?
   
   (Any of which would stand on the tall shoulders of DIRECT, of course, which was (quite reasonably) envisioned as a smooth transition from STS with overlap and cost-structure sharing, and a quick development.)
    -Alex

Offline Lars_J

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #281 on: 12/10/2010 02:48 am »
Yes.  That is the plan.  "We" are behind all of it.  ... We "can't let Shuttle go", clearly want everything else to fail and see the only way to ever get things done is sabatage everything else and make sure the "Republicans" do our bidding.  Or else. <evil laugh>

Aha! I knew it!  ;) ;D

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #282 on: 12/10/2010 07:02 am »
Actually, I think a 130 ton (118 t) HLV is a good option, provided that the mission is to return to the Moon to stay followed by flights to the asteroids and Mars.

The Saturn V had a 119 t LEO capability, so SLS (Saturn-V Launch System :-) would essentially be a Saturn V Mk.2. The Saturn V could send two astronauts to the Lunar surface, so SLS could also do that too (probably using crasher O2/H2 stage if the heavy 8.5 t Orion is used, or a replica of the Lunar Module if Dragon is used). If the mission is to stay, Saturn-V could land 15 t on the Moon for a cargo only mission, so SLS should also be capable of that. NASA would be doing what I believe it should have done after Apollo.

For missions to Mars, I believe this can be done with three SLS launches, first launch is a half full O2/H2 EDS, the second performs the von Braun tanking mode flight of filling up the EDS, the third launches the crew, crew return vehicle (hopefully Dragon as it is lighter than Orion), aeroshell, Mars transit vehicle, Habitat and Mars ascent vehicle (water and CO2 are extracted from the air to make the propellants for the MAV).

This means that Congress will need to cough up the money for the hardware and operations required. If it doesn't, SLS will probably head the same way as Saturn-V.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline HappyMartian

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #283 on: 12/10/2010 12:18 pm »
Someone might want to inform Marshall of that, if there is any substance to the beef Utah as with what is going on, it seems they didn't get the message the first time?

They didn't.   They still refuse to let go of the RSRMV.   PWR refuse to let go of J-2X, even though they would actually earn more with human rating of RL-10 and SSME-e.   And MSFC still has a strong contingent of "bigger than Saturn-V" Griffinites.

It is MHO, but I'm fairly sure they're about to price themselves out of contention.

Space-X say they can do a similar performance vehicle for a quarter of the money.   And they're riding a tide of success right now.   However powerful the AL/FL/LA/TX contingent is in Congress, they are ultimately outnumbered by the other 46 states and Space-X can play the deficit reduction card with all of them.

This could turn into a very bitter fight.   And ATK, PWR, Boeing and Lockheed could potentially be left (5+ years from now) holding little more in their hands but their family jewels.

This is ultimately going to boil down to affordability.   Minimum 130 ton SDLV is *NOT* an affordable option.   Reality will catch up sooner or later, and with the CxP debacle fresh in memory, this will lead to a repeat failure on NASA's part.   Not good :(

Ross.

Sounds like our President might at that point want to cancel all of NASA's human spaceflight capabilities and assets... Oh wait a sec, deja vu anyone?  ;)

Cheers!
"The Moon is the most accessible destination for realizing commercial, exploration and scientific objectives beyond low Earth orbit." - LEAG

Offline Jim

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #284 on: 12/10/2010 12:24 pm »
Someone might want to inform Marshall of that, if there is any substance to the beef Utah as with what is going on, it seems they didn't get the message the first time?

They didn't.   They still refuse to let go of the RSRMV.   PWR refuse to let go of J-2X, even though they would actually earn more with human rating of RL-10 and SSME-e.   And MSFC still has a strong contingent of "bigger than Saturn-V" Griffinites.

It is MHO, but I'm fairly sure they're about to price themselves out of contention.

Space-X say they can do a similar performance vehicle for a quarter of the money.   And they're riding a tide of success right now.   However powerful the AL/FL/LA/TX contingent is in Congress, they are ultimately outnumbered by the other 46 states and Space-X can play the deficit reduction card with all of them.

This could turn into a very bitter fight.   And ATK, PWR, Boeing and Lockheed could potentially be left (5+ years from now) holding little more in their hands but their family jewels.

This is ultimately going to boil down to affordability.   Minimum 130 ton SDLV is *NOT* an affordable option.   Reality will catch up sooner or later, and with the CxP debacle fresh in memory, this will lead to a repeat failure on NASA's part.   Not good :(

Ross.

Sounds like our President might at that point want to cancel all of NASA's human spaceflight capabilities and assets... Oh wait a sec, deja vu anyone?  ;)

Cheers!

Where in any of that post does he mention the president?  He is talking congress.

Offline TrueBlueWitt

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #285 on: 12/10/2010 12:51 pm »
Why does the U.S. House of Representives seem Hell bent on killing HSF in this country through "good intentions"??? 

Are they really that Clue Less(in this case the RIGHT word)?  I'm starting to think a bunch of 5th graders could make  better decisions.. at least with regard to NASA

I think even some factions in NASA are catching on quicker.. and finally getting the idea that "affordable" has to be priority number ONE.
« Last Edit: 12/10/2010 01:02 pm by TrueBlueWitt »

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #286 on: 12/10/2010 01:03 pm »
On the plus side, with SpaceX's success, maybe it is thought that SLS can start out somewhat larger than originally planned.

Unfortunately the larger SLS gets, the more expensive it gets. Which means ... increased risk of cancellation before 1st flight.

Someone might want to inform Marshall ... it seems they didn't get the message the first time?

I'm trying to find a silver lining.  My personal preference is to build J-130 as planned for the outlined evolution path.  The future growth could come when production and ops costs have settled down for SLS.  Of course, that would be pragmatic.  Heck.  It would be, I'd say, the common sense way to go about the new LV.

But no.  Unless I'm mistaken, ATK, PWR, Boeing and Lockheed and their congressional minions prefer the all or nothing approach.  It's a microcosm of the dysfunctionality of our government, where cooperation is seen as weakness, even when compared to program failure.  Worse, they're not even ashamed of themselves and their behavior.  So Ross' "family jewel" comment seems pertinent.

As to the $825M.  I thought it was widely thought, at least on this forum, that an additional launch would cost "only" $450M, more or less.

I wonder where they might find one of those...

Huh.  Izzat a trick question?

Yes.  That is the plan.  "We" are behind all of it. ...

I have not yet opened enrollment for my online sarcasm class.  Would you be interested in being one of the teachers?

Watching the activities on the Hill, how could a rational person respond any way other than in a sarcastic fashion?

Actually, I think a 130 ton (118 t) HLV is a good option, provided that the mission is to return to the Moon to stay followed by flights to the asteroids and Mars.

Bingo. I have no problem philosophically, ecumenically, or pragmatically with upping the ante on the initial vehicle, if there were additional managerial accountability.  The safer approach would be 70T.
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline Malderi

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #287 on: 12/10/2010 04:51 pm »
Also, note that specifying an initial capability of 130T doesn't necessarily require that that be the minimum capability of the rocket. It just requires that upper stages, boosters, etc. be developed simultaneously with the core. You could still potentially design a rocket that is flexible enough to fly without them for smaller missions, if necessary.

I agree, it's not the way I'd do it, but it still gives *some* flexibility.

Offline clongton

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #288 on: 12/10/2010 05:01 pm »
You could still potentially design a rocket that is flexible enough to fly without them for smaller missions, if necessary.

I agree, it's not the way I'd do it, but it still gives *some* flexibility.

Why not? That's *exactly* the way the Jupiter is designed. The Jupiter HLV is the Jupiter-246. It uses 4xSSME's and an upper stage with 6xRL-10's. That is *the* Jupiter rocket. Everything is designed for THAT flight configuration. But if you don't need to fly 100mT to orbit then leave off the upper stage and (1) SSME and fly it. That flight configuration of the Jupiter LV is identified as the Jupiter-130, and will deliver 70mT to LEO. But the *Jupiter design* is with the upper stage and drops off ~112mT to LEO.
« Last Edit: 12/10/2010 05:03 pm by clongton »
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I started my career on the Saturn-V F-1A engine

Offline Malderi

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #289 on: 12/10/2010 05:05 pm »
I'm aware of that, but I was meaning to say that DIRECT still fits in with the language in the appropriations bills, although the development path is different.

When I say it's not the way I'd do it, what I meant is that I'd design it like DIRECT - fly without the upper stage first, instead of developing it all at once. That's all. Sorry for the confusion.

Offline Periander

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #290 on: 12/10/2010 06:38 pm »

What an evil plan....I was hoping the Ombama adminstration would restrart CXP and use the technology  to build lunar reeducation camps for the republicans....<Evil laugh>


That is the downside to having congress have so much control of NASA. They can create bad policy.


Discounting the minor detail that there is no such thing as the Ombama administration, the current policy is very much bipartison and quite acceptable for a multitude of reasons.  So if there were such "re-education camps" I suppose you could not include just one party. 



Discounting the minor detail that there is no such thing as "bipartison", I find the current spectacle of politicians designing NASA launch vehicles to insure their states get a cut of the action revolting and disheartening. Doubly so since they apparently have no regard to the affordability or sustainability of said vehicle which to top everything off has no mission and no payloads.

We're well past the point where sarcasm is in order, we ought to be outraged.

Offline Namechange User

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #291 on: 12/10/2010 08:06 pm »
Discounting the minor detail that there is no such thing as "bipartison", I find the current spectacle of politicians designing NASA launch vehicles to insure their states get a cut of the action revolting and disheartening. Doubly so since they apparently have no regard to the affordability or sustainability of said vehicle which to top everything off has no mission and no payloads.

We're well past the point where sarcasm is in order, we ought to be outraged.
Oops, did have a spelling mistake.  Thanks for pointing that out!  Sarcasm and humor I think can be kind of fun now and then, especially when one does not take posts so seriously.  Don’t you?

I mean, after all, I have been accused of (paraphrasing because I don't obviously remember the exact quotes) having a "narrow vision of space exploration", a "fat-cat only concerned about protecting my government-provided job", "sucking off the government-welfare state", "unable and afraid to compete", "making a well above average and more than necessary salary" (people who say this would be forced to shut up if they knew the truth) and generally not understanding this or that and the list could go on and on.  Of course none of it is true, and is totally inconsequential to me in the grand scheme, but sarcasm can come naturally at times. 

Why have I been told this by some people?  I think part of the answer is because I work on the Space Shuttle Program and argue certain misconceptions that some just like to post as if they were facts when I know quite different.  Is it perfect?  No, of course it isn’t.  Could it all be more efficient?  Yes!!  But it is a program that is unlikely to be duplicated in the near-term.  Most importantly, it is the program that fundamentally built the majority of ISS, which is the immediate cornerstone for much "commercial" (the more appropriate term is "public/private relationship" or something like that) activity and incentive.

Why else could these things have been said?  True, I have made it known I did not believe Shuttle should be retired until another resupply chain was verified as being able to replace some of the orbiter capability.  Would it have taken long and resulted in "years" to the manifest?  Highly unlikely, and I am on several records saying such, but it would have ensured ISS was exactly what it was intended to be making the business case for this public/private partnership that much stronger.  Was it to "protect my job"?  Hardly…..

What else could have been behind these comments?  I made it known I believed a SDLV was a viable choice for an HLV (and actually believe an HLV could be useful).  Others are welcome to disagree but I gave reasons why I believed, if there was going to be an HLV, a shuttle-derived made sense to me.  A SDLV is not STS in either function or cost but that is a point often overlooked.  Yes, it has SRBs, and at least in my opinion, it seems "fashionable" by many on here right now that anything with those is immediately subject to scorn.  Did I ever say anything else could not be used?  No, of course I didn’t.

Could anything else lead to some of these comments?  Oh yeah!  I questioned the root and practicality of the original FY2011 proposal.  I thought elements of it were good, investing in the "commercial" sector for example, but did not embrace the whole 2011 package totally.  Why?  Well, I questioned the "how" it was to be implemented a lot and I truly believed the timing of it would cause a net loss to a lot of valuable experience across what is now CxP and STS where that experience is certainly transferrable to future applications, government or commercial.  Of course, that is throughout several threads and I seriously was commenting on what I believed would provide the best health for this knowledge base, wherever it ended up being located, for those who want to stick around in this industry. 

So with all that, sarcasm is good every now and then, especially when others accuse others without any real merit.  I mean, for example, where is your proof that politicians are "designing" launch vehicles?  Do you honestly believe they were running calculations, simulations, etc?  Of course they aren’t, especially since NASA believes they can "evaluate the trade space" and multiple study contracts have been issued to companies that are not involved in STS. 

Let’s explore your comment further.  Do you have any proof that NASA or the government "have no regard to the affordability or sustainability"?  Notes on L2 would seem to indicate otherwise.  Clearly CxP was a bit of a disaster but no contracts have been issued for SLS showing this, no accounts have been robbed for SLS, etc. 

Let’s also discuss "mission and payloads".  If the SLS becomes EELV-derived, or even from SpaceX, will payloads and missions suddenly appear instantaneously?  Nope.  And frankly, the suggestion and assumption that the cost of DDT&E, etc will be cheaper with one of them, allowing for all this money to be freed up, is not known because the exact requirements, how it will be managed and the contracting mechanism for all of these and others are unknown.  It "levels the playing field" to a certain extent with all these options.  Presumably, those options are being evaluated and perhaps we will know something more concrete soon. 

Finally, it is completely illogical to assume that congress will not be interested in their states "getting a cut of the action".  Fact is that is part of the reason they are there.  Not a perfect system but better than others.  I also ask that if EELV becomes SLS, will Colorado's representation be lumped into this category?  If SpaceX gets SLS, what about California's representation?  With respect to "commercial", there will be others out to protect their "cut of the action".  You can already see this with Virginia's reps.  It's not a "bad thing", it simply is what it is. 

So, I hear what you are saying in the most basic sense, but sarcasm is fine and if one is to be outraged we should make sure we apply that outrage equally and legitimately.  In the end, I don't care anymore.  I just want to see some positive steps forward, decisions made to finally leave Earth and personally know when I become unemployed for sure and finish the STS Program in a manner it deserves. 

Sorry for the lengthy post, have a good weekend everyone.
« Last Edit: 12/10/2010 08:32 pm by OV-106 »
Enjoying viewing the forum a little better now by filtering certain users.

Offline yg1968

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #292 on: 12/10/2010 10:24 pm »

Offline spacetraveler

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #293 on: 12/11/2010 06:39 am »
The appropriations language may not directly conflict with the authorization act, but it seems to me that the reality does conflict.

Developing a 70 ton lifter with $11B by 2016 is already an aggressive schedule for the NASA of recent decades from both a time and budgetary standpoint.

The appropriations language significantly increases the initial required capability but does not alter the time or budget requirements in the authorization. That seems to me like it is putting us back in another CxP situation where the resources provided to NASA do not match the intended timeline and therefore success is very unlikely.
« Last Edit: 12/11/2010 06:39 am by spacetraveler »

Offline sdsds

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #294 on: 12/11/2010 07:07 am »
The appropriations legislation covers a single year (FY2011), almost a quarter of which has already passed.  The intent is quite clear:  don't fail to fund in FY2011 upper stage components currently under development that would be part of a 130 ton vehicle.  So for the nine remaining months of FY2011 NASA won't be canceling J-2X.

If you really want to work to get J-2X unfunded, though, don't despair.  Starting in early February of 2011 Congress will once again be considering a NASA budget proposed by President Obama, i.e. the FY2012 budget.
ó 𝐬𝐝𝐒𝐝𝐬 ó

Offline HappyMartian

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #295 on: 12/11/2010 10:02 am »
Discounting the minor detail that there is no such thing as "bipartison", I find the current spectacle of politicians designing NASA launch vehicles to insure their states get a cut of the action revolting and disheartening. Doubly so since they apparently have no regard to the affordability or sustainability of said vehicle which to top everything off has no mission and no payloads.

We're well past the point where sarcasm is in order, we ought to be outraged.
Oops, did have a spelling mistake.  Thanks for pointing that out!  Sarcasm and humor I think can be kind of fun now and then, especially when one does not take posts so seriously.  Donít you?

I mean, after all, I have been accused of (paraphrasing because I don't obviously remember the exact quotes) having a "narrow vision of space exploration", a "fat-cat only concerned about protecting my government-provided job", "sucking off the government-welfare state", "unable and afraid to compete", "making a well above average and more than necessary salary" (people who say this would be forced to shut up if they knew the truth) and generally not understanding this or that and the list could go on and on.  Of course none of it is true, and is totally inconsequential to me in the grand scheme, but sarcasm can come naturally at times. 

Why have I been told this by some people?  I think part of the answer is because I work on the Space Shuttle Program and argue certain misconceptions that some just like to post as if they were facts when I know quite different.  Is it perfect?  No, of course it isnít.  Could it all be more efficient?  Yes!!  But it is a program that is unlikely to be duplicated in the near-term.  Most importantly, it is the program that fundamentally built the majority of ISS, which is the immediate cornerstone for much "commercial" (the more appropriate term is "public/private relationship" or something like that) activity and incentive.

Why else could these things have been said?  True, I have made it known I did not believe Shuttle should be retired until another resupply chain was verified as being able to replace some of the orbiter capability.  Would it have taken long and resulted in "years" to the manifest?  Highly unlikely, and I am on several records saying such, but it would have ensured ISS was exactly what it was intended to be making the business case for this public/private partnership that much stronger.  Was it to "protect my job"?  HardlyÖ..

What else could have been behind these comments?  I made it known I believed a SDLV was a viable choice for an HLV (and actually believe an HLV could be useful).  Others are welcome to disagree but I gave reasons why I believed, if there was going to be an HLV, a shuttle-derived made sense to me.  A SDLV is not STS in either function or cost but that is a point often overlooked.  Yes, it has SRBs, and at least in my opinion, it seems "fashionable" by many on here right now that anything with those is immediately subject to scorn.  Did I ever say anything else could not be used?  No, of course I didnít.

Could anything else lead to some of these comments?  Oh yeah!  I questioned the root and practicality of the original FY2011 proposal.  I thought elements of it were good, investing in the "commercial" sector for example, but did not embrace the whole 2011 package totally.  Why?  Well, I questioned the "how" it was to be implemented a lot and I truly believed the timing of it would cause a net loss to a lot of valuable experience across what is now CxP and STS where that experience is certainly transferrable to future applications, government or commercial.  Of course, that is throughout several threads and I seriously was commenting on what I believed would provide the best health for this knowledge base, wherever it ended up being located, for those who want to stick around in this industry. 

So with all that, sarcasm is good every now and then, especially when others accuse others without any real merit.  I mean, for example, where is your proof that politicians are "designing" launch vehicles?  Do you honestly believe they were running calculations, simulations, etc?  Of course they arenít, especially since NASA believes they can "evaluate the trade space" and multiple study contracts have been issued to companies that are not involved in STS. 

Letís explore your comment further.  Do you have any proof that NASA or the government "have no regard to the affordability or sustainability"?  Notes on L2 would seem to indicate otherwise.  Clearly CxP was a bit of a disaster but no contracts have been issued for SLS showing this, no accounts have been robbed for SLS, etc. 

Letís also discuss "mission and payloads".  If the SLS becomes EELV-derived, or even from SpaceX, will payloads and missions suddenly appear instantaneously?  Nope.  And frankly, the suggestion and assumption that the cost of DDT&E, etc will be cheaper with one of them, allowing for all this money to be freed up, is not known because the exact requirements, how it will be managed and the contracting mechanism for all of these and others are unknown.  It "levels the playing field" to a certain extent with all these options.  Presumably, those options are being evaluated and perhaps we will know something more concrete soon. 

Finally, it is completely illogical to assume that congress will not be interested in their states "getting a cut of the action".  Fact is that is part of the reason they are there.  Not a perfect system but better than others.  I also ask that if EELV becomes SLS, will Colorado's representation be lumped into this category?  If SpaceX gets SLS, what about California's representation?  With respect to "commercial", there will be others out to protect their "cut of the action".  You can already see this with Virginia's reps.  It's not a "bad thing", it simply is what it is. 

So, I hear what you are saying in the most basic sense, but sarcasm is fine and if one is to be outraged we should make sure we apply that outrage equally and legitimately.  In the end, I don't care anymore.  I just want to see some positive steps forward, decisions made to finally leave Earth and personally know when I become unemployed for sure and finish the STS Program in a manner it deserves. 

Sorry for the lengthy post, have a good weekend everyone.


I always enjoy reading what OV-106 writes. He makes sense. So do Ross and Clongton.

As to, "the current spectacle of politicians designing NASA launch vehicles to insure their states get a cut of the action revolting and disheartening", it is far more likely that Congressional debate and action will produce a far more workable space policy than would the President's clearly expressed desire to throw out the window the SSME, Orion, and NASA's experienced launch crews and network of human spaceflight contractors.

Every state contributes tax money to the federal government and it is quite normal and reasonable that such tax money should be spent in the great diversity of states that contributed their tax dollars to Uncle Sam. Of course some folks think it would be better if the money left the USA and whatever NASA human spacecraft do is simply outsourced to the lowest bidder in America and at some point in the future when we wake up and realize that the lowest American bidder will still have to follow strict American safety regulations and other expectations, then we will simply outsource our human space access spacecraft to some corner of the world where the standards are different from America's. That won't get much political support from Congress for 'NASA's human spacecraft or robotic space exploration program', but who cares, India or Russia will be glad to take whatever of the program that is still left. 

Jim's continued defense of the President's dismantling attempt and lack of leadership for NASA's LEO and BLEO Orion replacement spacecraft for the Space Shuttles is quite strange. Some folks are happy with the hidden motives and politics of various presidents and their strange nonfunctional leadership provided to NASA, but unhappy about Congressional discussions that are aimed at gettiing NASA a functional and nationally supported SLS to take humans back to the Moon... That is a bit of contradiction. Or maybe it isn't. Maybe some loudly complaining folks don't really want to see America and other nations building bases on the Moon and mining Lunar resources.

The Direct Team came up with a great plan to get us back to the Moon. The President didn't. Congress is trying. Let us see what happens.

Cheers!
   
"The Moon is the most accessible destination for realizing commercial, exploration and scientific objectives beyond low Earth orbit." - LEAG

Offline Cog_in_the_machine

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #296 on: 12/11/2010 11:08 am »
Maybe some loudly complaining folks don't really want to see America and other nations building bases on the Moon and mining Lunar resources.

Or maybe what you're defending is a fantasy, the pursuit of which will leave NASA's HSF efforts in an even worse state than they're already in, because NASA will inevitably be asked, yet again like it has been for 40 years, to achieve a goal which it doesn't have the resources for. Due to interlinked political, economic and engineering difficulties, that show no signs of improving at all, NASA hasn't even managed to develop a replacement for their LEO crew and cargo capabilities, despite years of trying. Yet people expect them to succeed in planning and executing BEO activities from the get go, when there are no signs that any of the issues that have plagued the agency over decades will be resolved. Maybe the "loudly complaining folks" are of the persuasion that this grandiose vision, that congress is supposedly pushing, will end in tears like so many other projects.
Also, before Obama's administration, the US was following a more exclusionary space policy. So as much as you hate it, you have the administration to thank for changing the National Space Policy of the USA to include more international cooperation, which seems to be a recurring theme throughout your posts.

Quote
The Direct Team came up with a great plan to get us back to the Moon. The President didn't. Congress is trying.

And it's humorous to watch.
^^ Warning! Contains opinions. ^^ 

Offline Jim

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #297 on: 12/11/2010 11:45 am »

1.  As to, "the current spectacle of politicians designing NASA launch vehicles to insure their states get a cut of the action revolting and disheartening", it is far more likely that Congressional debate and action will produce a far more workable space policy than would the President's clearly expressed desire to throw out the window the SSME, Orion, and NASA's experienced launch crews and network of human spaceflight contractors.

2.  Jim's continued defense of the President's dismantling attempt and lack of leadership for NASA's LEO and BLEO Orion replacement spacecraft for the Space Shuttles is quite strange. Some folks are happy with the hidden motives and politics of various presidents and their strange nonfunctional leadership provided to NASA, but unhappy about Congressional discussions that are aimed at gettiing NASA a functional and nationally supported SLS to take humans back to the Moon... That is a bit of contradiction. Or maybe it isn't. Maybe some loudly complaining folks don't really want to see America and other nations building bases on the Moon and mining Lunar resources.
 

1.  Launch crews will not be saved by SLS or any other program.  The gap between development and operations is too wide.  They wouldn't have been saved by CxP either.  SSME was never guaranteed to saved either.  Nor has a reason been provided that it should be.

2.  The nation can not afford a lunar base nor should NASA be the one to manage one.  It is not in NASA's charter nor should it be. Nor is there a compelling reason for a lunar base that would benefit the USA.

Offline clongton

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #298 on: 12/11/2010 12:37 pm »

Congress is trying. And it's humorous to watch.

Most people really like sausage but not so many like to watch the sausage-making :) . Don't throw the baby out with the wash. Believe it or not Congress has a lot more to deal with than NASA and the SLS will just have to find its place in the process. As important as we all know it is, so are a lot of other things and if SLS is important to you then you and your friends and family should be calling your Legislators to register that fact. That's how its importance to your Legislators gets noticed and hopefully influenced. That's how the sausage is made.

Edit: watch: -> wash
« Last Edit: 12/11/2010 09:19 pm by clongton »
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Offline HappyMartian

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Re: NASA FY 2011 Appropriations - preview
« Reply #299 on: 12/11/2010 01:01 pm »
Maybe some loudly complaining folks don't really want to see America and other nations building bases on the Moon and mining Lunar resources.

Or maybe what you're defending is a fantasy, the pursuit of which will leave NASA's HSF efforts in an even worse state than they're already in, because NASA will inevitably be asked, yet again like it has been for 40 years, to achieve a goal which it doesn't have the resources for. Due to interlinked political, economic and engineering difficulties, that show no signs of improving at all, NASA hasn't even managed to develop a replacement for their LEO crew and cargo capabilities, despite years of trying. Yet people expect them to succeed in planning and executing BEO activities from the get go, when there are no signs that any of the issues that have plagued the agency over decades will be resolved. Maybe the "loudly complaining folks" are of the persuasion that this grandiose vision, that congress is supposedly pushing, will end in tears like so many other projects.
Also, before Obama's administration, the US was following a more exclusionary space policy. So as much as you hate it, you have the administration to thank for changing the National Space Policy of the USA to include more international cooperation, which seems to be a recurring theme throughout your posts.

Quote
The Direct Team came up with a great plan to get us back to the Moon. The President didn't. Congress is trying.

And it's humorous to watch.

It is getting to be a very small planet. You know, the Internet, jets, high speed railroads, international human migrations, highways everywhere, and cars and buses offering common folks access to places that only the rich and powerful could have visited a hundred years ago. And to many Americans, international cooperation in space exploration 'sausage' is the only thing that makes much sense, and to be accurate, the current President didn't come up with the cooperative idea of space exploration. Some of the older folks on this forum understood the importance of international cooperation in space exploration long before the current President was born. Also, the current President didn't have anything to do with the origins of the International Space Station, which is widely seen as the model for our future international cooperation in space exploration.

Most Americans probably wouldn't be overly keen to be seen as the people that have to pay for everything that humans do beyond low Earth orbit. The world has changed since the Space Race ended with NASA astronauts beginning to explore the Moon four decades ago. Many countries now have the wealth and technical and scientific capabilities to make significant contributions to our human and robotic efforts at building permanent homes on Luna and other worlds. NASA and the BLEO Orion and the SLS will represent America in going back to the Moon with every peaceful nation that wants to make some kind of contribution to the planet Earth's immense space exploration mission. And yes, don't worry, there is a good chance that SpaceX's Dragon will be heading out towards Luna... But Dragon will not be the sole method of getting there, despite the current President's previous nonviable plan... 

It is true that many efforts and even each of our respective lives will "end in tears"... but it isn't worth crying in our milk if NASA and our international space expoloration partners experience another American Presidential leadership failure in our ongoing effort to do a midcourse correction in our long-term flight path to the Moon. It will only be worth some tears if the human species quits trying to reach for the Moon and stars. And since that 'lack of curiousity about the universe' situation doesn't appear to be very likely, we might as well save our tears for something else.

If the President ever gets tired of sitting on his hands and wants to make a serious contribution to getting us back to the Moon, he could hire OV-106, Clongton, or Ross to work in the White House and explain to him and the nation how to do Lunar space Exploration in a cost efficient and practical manner. Currently, the 'space experts' he is listening to in the White House don't have any interest, ability, or desire to effectively work with Congress and NASA in order to get us back to the Moon. Congress isn't perfect, but it is already doing much better than what the current President previously suggested. Who knows, if the President hired and listened to OV-106, Clongton, or Ross, we could be back on the Moon much sooner than a lot folks are predicting. Along the way to Luna, we might also start working on reindustrializing America, and that too would be really nice. Maybe some older folks are getting a little tired of the international 'outsourcing of everything' attitude of our current American leadership. The erstwhile national leadership of our long ago youthful days was a lot more inspirational and wiser than the current crowd of confused and lost sound bite peacocks. ;)

Cheers!

Edited.

« Last Edit: 12/11/2010 01:15 pm by HappyMartian »
"The Moon is the most accessible destination for realizing commercial, exploration and scientific objectives beyond low Earth orbit." - LEAG

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