Poll

Should NASA require Boeing to repeat its Starliner Orbital Test Flight due to the recent software issues?

Yes
460 (95.6%)
No
21 (4.4%)

Total Members Voted: 481

Voting closed: 02/21/2020 10:34 pm


Author Topic: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4  (Read 501188 times)

Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #20 on: 09/10/2019 08:45 pm »
I was at the National Space Club Florida Committee luncheon today. John Mulholland, VP and Program Manager of the Boeing Commercial Crew Program spoke about the Starliner today. Nothing definite in terms of status updates, but he did provide the following on the three vehicles:

  - Pad Abort Test - Vehicle is at White Sands Missile Range completing setup and readiness testing for the actual Abort Test. Looks to be completed with testing "soon". Noted that they will use the same test structure as Orion.
  - Orbital Flight Test (OFT) - Going through final testing. Later indicated Boeing hopes final test completed next week with a quick trip to 41 after that.
  - Crew Flight Test (CFT) - Completed Environmental Testing at their California facility and is back in Florida.

Otherwise, responding to a question about switching to Vulcan when Atlas V retires, he indicated it was a strong consideration, to the point they ensured the crew access arm/launch gantry can accommodate the larger Vulcan vehicle. However, he indicated Starliner was designed with the Atlas V retirement in mind, and could be launched on any of the current available launchers. He didn't get specific.

Sorry if this was discussed elsewhere, but thought it was good to hear today.

Offline Yellowstone10

Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #21 on: 09/27/2019 01:54 pm »
If I'm reading the schedule correctly, this week's launch of Soyuz MS-15 has some interesting implications for Starliner. Soyuz MS-16 (launching in spring 2020) isn't expected to carry any American crewmembers, and MS-17 isn't launching until fall 2020. The longest Soyuz mission (TMA-9, in 2006) lasted 215 days, so that would mean MS-15 needs to return with Meir and Morgan no later than late April. So in order to maintain a NASA crew presence on the station, Boe-CFT needs to launch no later than mid-April of next year.

Offline ncb1397

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #22 on: 09/29/2019 11:36 pm »
If I'm reading the schedule correctly, this week's launch of Soyuz MS-15 has some interesting implications for Starliner. Soyuz MS-16 (launching in spring 2020) isn't expected to carry any American crewmembers, and MS-17 isn't launching until fall 2020. The longest Soyuz mission (TMA-9, in 2006) lasted 215 days, so that would mean MS-15 needs to return with Meir and Morgan no later than late April. So in order to maintain a NASA crew presence on the station, Boe-CFT needs to launch no later than mid-April of next year.

Meir or Morgan might get an extension like Christina Koch. Or we pull a favor with JAXA and swap out Akihiko Hoshide on MS-16.
« Last Edit: 09/29/2019 11:41 pm by ncb1397 »

Offline GWR64

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #23 on: 10/02/2019 02:28 pm »
If I'm reading the schedule correctly, this week's launch of Soyuz MS-15 has some interesting implications for Starliner. Soyuz MS-16 (launching in spring 2020) isn't expected to carry any American crewmembers, and MS-17 isn't launching until fall 2020. The longest Soyuz mission (TMA-9, in 2006) lasted 215 days, so that would mean MS-15 needs to return with Meir and Morgan no later than late April. So in order to maintain a NASA crew presence on the station, Boe-CFT needs to launch no later than mid-April of next year.

Meir or Morgan might get an extension like Christina Koch. ...
This is not possible, Soyuz MS16 has 3 seats, offer only for 3 a rescue option.

...Or we pull a favor with JAXA and swap out Akihiko Hoshide on MS-16.

What difference does that make?
« Last Edit: 10/02/2019 02:31 pm by GWR64 »

Offline ZachS09

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #24 on: 10/02/2019 07:16 pm »
Morgan already has an extension, which makes his current mission duration 256 days. If he stayed on Soyuz-MS 13 and landed with Skvortsov and Parmitano, he would've been onboard for 201 days.

http://spacefacts.de/iss/english/exp_61.htm
http://spacefacts.de/iss/english/exp_62.htm

I calculated the duration between the launch and landing dates for Morgan's mission.

https://www.timeanddate.com/date/timeduration.html?
« Last Edit: 10/02/2019 07:22 pm by ZachS09 »
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Offline Yellowstone10

Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #25 on: 10/04/2019 09:27 pm »
This is not possible, Soyuz MS16 has 3 seats, offer only for 3 a rescue option.

Meir's mission could be extended if one of the astronauts on MS-16 returned on MS-15 in her place. But with Soyuz flights now scheduled for 6-month intervals, that would be a year-long trip, which seems unlikely.

What difference does that make?

Hoshide flying on MS-16 does keep a USOS astronaut on station, but I think NASA specifically wants an American astronaut on the ISS at all times. There's never been a case where the only USOS crew was non-NASA.
« Last Edit: 10/04/2019 09:27 pm by Yellowstone10 »

Offline GWR64

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #26 on: 10/04/2019 09:49 pm »
This is not possible, Soyuz MS16 has 3 seats, offer only for 3 a rescue option.

Meir's mission could be extended if one of the astronauts on MS-16 returned on MS-15 in her place. But with Soyuz flights now scheduled for 6-month intervals, that would be a year-long trip, which seems unlikely.

What difference does that make?

Hoshide flying on MS-16 does keep a USOS astronaut on station, but I think NASA specifically wants an American astronaut on the ISS at all times. There's never been a case where the only USOS crew was non-NASA.

In the end there is always only one astonaut in the non russian part of the ISS. That is the point.
Whether Hoshide, Meir or someone else. And that's not enough.

« Last Edit: 10/04/2019 09:50 pm by GWR64 »

Offline Yellowstone10

Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #27 on: 10/05/2019 02:25 pm »
In the end there is always only one astonaut in the non russian part of the ISS. That is the point.
Whether Hoshide, Meir or someone else. And that's not enough.

Obviously NASA wants the USOS fully crewed, but they can keep things running with just one astronaut while they wait for Commercial Crew flights to start. This happened as recently as November 2016, when Shane Kimbrough was the only USOS crew for 3 weeks at the start of Expedition 50. Or if we don't count handovers, roughly every other expedition had just one USOS crew back in the 3-crew days (with the last being Expedition 17, ending in October 2008).

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #29 on: 10/16/2019 06:37 pm »
Doug Messier reviews the various delays in the Starliner program:

Quote
Boeing Starliner Commercial Crew Delay: ~3 Years
 October 16, 2019  Doug Messier

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2019/10/16/boeing-starliner-commercial-crew-delay-3-years/

I was struck by this, among several reasons for delays:

Quote
[...] one of the reasons for the slip has been Boeing’s need to focus more resources on the struggling SLS program

Offline woods170

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #30 on: 10/16/2019 07:06 pm »
Doug Messier reviews the various delays in the Starliner program:

Quote
Boeing Starliner Commercial Crew Delay: ~3 Years
 October 16, 2019  Doug Messier

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2019/10/16/boeing-starliner-commercial-crew-delay-3-years/

I was struck by this, among several reasons for delays:

Quote
[...] one of the reasons for the slip has been Boeing’s need to focus more resources on the struggling SLS program
Hearsay based on a “source who wishes to remain anonymous”. So, it is a rumour, not a fact. I suggest to treat is as such.

Offline LaunchedIn68

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #31 on: 10/16/2019 07:56 pm »
Doug Messier reviews the various delays in the Starliner program:

Quote
Boeing Starliner Commercial Crew Delay: ~3 Years
 October 16, 2019  Doug Messier

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2019/10/16/boeing-starliner-commercial-crew-delay-3-years/

I was struck by this, among several reasons for delays:

Quote
[...] one of the reasons for the slip has been Boeing’s need to focus more resources on the struggling SLS program
Hearsay based on a “source who wishes to remain anonymous”. So, it is a rumour, not a fact. I suggest to treat is as such.

Par for the course for that site.
"I want to build a spaceship, go to the moon, salvage all the junk that's up there, bring it back, sell it." - Harry Broderick

Offline Markstark

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #32 on: 10/16/2019 08:40 pm »
My experience has been the opposite. Boeing employees that typically work on SLS have been traveling to KSC to help on the Starliner at the C3PF. I’ve seen this with welders, quality and engineering personnel.

Offline clongton

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #33 on: 10/16/2019 08:49 pm »
Rumors should be treated as unsubstantiated hearsay or flights of fantasy until either (1) the source publicly identifies themselves or (2) facts on the ground catch up with the rumor. It's best to simply ignore them.
« Last Edit: 10/16/2019 08:50 pm by clongton »
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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #34 on: 10/17/2019 12:09 am »
Doug Messier reviews the various delays in the Starliner program:

Quote
Boeing Starliner Commercial Crew Delay: ~3 Years
 October 16, 2019  Doug Messier

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2019/10/16/boeing-starliner-commercial-crew-delay-3-years/

I was struck by this, among several reasons for delays:

Quote
[...] one of the reasons for the slip has been Boeing’s need to focus more resources on the struggling SLS program
Hearsay based on a “source who wishes to remain anonymous”. So, it is a rumour, not a fact. I suggest to treat is as such.

On a similar article for SpaceX his “source” made all sorts of errors and mistakes. I certainly don’t consider his articles reliable, tbh.

Offline QuantumG

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #35 on: 10/17/2019 12:37 am »
On a similar article for SpaceX his “source” made all sorts of errors and mistakes. I certainly don’t consider his articles reliable, tbh.

When I tried my hand at this game I found that all my sources made silly mistakes. It's par for the course. Go talk to anyone in any industry and chances are they'll tell you something you know to be outright false. The skill of intelligence gathering is picking out the interesting bits that you don't get from elsewhere and finding ways to confirm or deny them. Tricky ways  8)
Human spaceflight is basically just LARPing now.

Offline penguin44

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #36 on: 10/18/2019 05:23 am »
Random question and apology if this is not the correct forum for it. It seems that starliner will have a ground abort test and then go straight to oft1 and the cft. Why are they not doing a full inflight abort test similar to what spacex is planning? Is simply the launch vehicle that are the difference?

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #37 on: 10/18/2019 06:38 am »
Random question and apology if this is not the correct forum for it. It seems that starliner will have a ground abort test and then go straight to oft1 and the cft. Why are they not doing a full inflight abort test similar to what spacex is planning? Is simply the launch vehicle that are the difference?

Apparently, computer simulations are good enough for both Boeing and NASA for the in-flight abort! I'm one of those people who think not doing an in-flight abort is a bad idea.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #38 on: 10/18/2019 07:33 am »
Random question and apology if this is not the correct forum for it. It seems that starliner will have a ground abort test and then go straight to oft1 and the cft. Why are they not doing a full inflight abort test similar to what spacex is planning? Is simply the launch vehicle that are the difference?

Apparently, computer simulations are good enough for both Boeing and NASA for the in-flight abort! I'm one of those people who think not doing an in-flight abort is a bad idea.

Under the various stages of CCP NASA never requested/demanded any of it's commercial partners to perform actual abort flight tests. The only requirement was that the commercial partners would "prove" their abort systems in different ways (such as static firing combined with exhaustive computer modeling).

Actual flight testing of the abort systems was optional and could be added to the CCiCAP and CCtCAP contracts as voluntary milestones.

When SpaceX put in their Crew Dragon proposal for CCiCAP they added TWO voluntary milestones: pad abort flight test and in-flight abort test. Both flight tests were proposed by SpaceX and accepted by NASA. In other words: NASA did not force SpaceX to add those abort flight tests.

When Boeing put in their CST-100 proposal for CCtCAP they added ONE voluntary milestone: pad abort flight test. The flight test was proposed by Boeing and accepted by NASA. In other words: NASA did not force Boeing to add this flight abort flight test.

Thus, Boeing NOT doing an in-flight abort test is the result of NASA NOT requiring one.

There is a catch however. Once the voluntary abort flight tests were accepted by NASA they became "MUST DO" milestones on the path to certification. The fact that SpaceX volunteered to do an in-flight abort test does NOT give SpaceX the right to say "forget it, too difficult, we're gonna skip it".

In hindsight SpaceX shot itself in the foot, financially speaking. It volunteered to do an extra abort flight test above what Boeing was doing. And it did so for less money. Yet that additional abort flight test is now costing SpaceX a crapload of additional money due to the DM-1 static fire anomaly.
On the plus side is that a major design issue was uncovered before any humans were flown on Crew Dragon. Overall the reliability and safety of Crew Dragon will be much increased.

Having said all this I agree with Steven that NASA should have required both CCP contractors to perform both pad- and in-flight abort tests.

Offline arachnitect

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Re: Boeing's Starliner (CST-100) - Discussion Thread 4
« Reply #39 on: 10/18/2019 07:50 pm »
I kinda want to see a CST-100 in-flight too. If nothing else, they're fun to watch. That said:

Has anyone ever failed the primary objectives of an inflight abort test?

My recollection of these is that they're really good at finding problems in test hardware but the abort components (the ones present at least) always function as expected and produce a survivable outcome. Am I forgetting one?

[devil's advocate here] So if you have a very expensive test that everyone always passes, shouldn't you be spending your time and schedule on something else instead?

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