Author Topic: Resource Prospector  (Read 76424 times)

Offline Warren Platts

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #100 on: 03/06/2018 07:00 PM »
Quick question for anybody: What would be the landing requirements for RPM, assuming landing in a polar location, in terms of dry mass, propellant, and delta v?
"When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return."--Leonardo Da Vinci

Offline AegeanBlue

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 493
  • Raleigh
  • Liked: 121
  • Likes Given: 39
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #101 on: 04/26/2018 10:04 PM »
It seems that Resource Prospector has been cancelled, because there is letter from LEAG asking Brindestine to reconsider:

http://spaceref.com/news/viewsr.html?pid=51363

Offline Steven Pietrobon

  • Member
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 15964
  • Adelaide, Australia
    • Steven Pietrobon's Space Archive
  • Liked: 5061
  • Likes Given: 640
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #102 on: 04/27/2018 04:53 AM »
Here's the relevant sentence. Here's hoping Bridenstine can start on the right foot by getting this decision reversed.

"We now understand RP was cancelled on 23 April 2018 and the project has been asked to close down by the end of May."
« Last Edit: 04/27/2018 07:32 AM by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Lar

  • Fan boy at large
  • Global Moderator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 10176
  • Saw Gemini live on TV
  • A large LEGO storage facility ... in Michigan
  • Liked: 7036
  • Likes Given: 4817
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #103 on: 04/27/2018 06:40 AM »
That's unfortunate, this project has puttered around the edges for a very long time and should have gotten a shot.
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Offline Bananas_on_Mars

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 132
  • Liked: 65
  • Likes Given: 12
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #104 on: 04/27/2018 08:27 AM »
That's unfortunate, this project has puttered around the edges for a very long time and should have gotten a shot.
Well, maybe i understand this the right way...


Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #105 on: 04/27/2018 11:19 AM »
 I doubt development effort will go to waste chances are technology will be applied to other rover missions even if its only subsets of RP payload.

Offline daveklingler

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 504
  • Liked: 153
  • Likes Given: 16
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #106 on: 04/27/2018 07:33 PM »
In other news, Blue Origin and SpaceX have both agreed to have a look around for water when they land on the South pole in the 2020-2022 time frame.

They'll report what they find back to NASA so that an appropriate crewed mission can be designed for SLS in the late 2020's.

Seriously, the impending presence of New Glenn and BFR should be having a big effect on unmanned mission planning, and I'm not sure it's sunk in yet at NASA.  There are several other missions happening before RP's planned landing in 2022, including some from the US and some from other countries, perhaps more than enough to make RP a lot less important.

Offline AegeanBlue

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 493
  • Raleigh
  • Liked: 121
  • Likes Given: 39
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #107 on: 04/27/2018 08:59 PM »
In other news, Blue Origin and SpaceX have both agreed to have a look around for water when they land on the South pole in the 2020-2022 time frame.

They'll report what they find back to NASA so that an appropriate crewed mission can be designed for SLS in the late 2020's.

Seriously, the impending presence of New Glenn and BFR should be having a big effect on unmanned mission planning, and I'm not sure it's sunk in yet at NASA.  There are several other missions happening before RP's planned landing in 2022, including some from the US and some from other countries, perhaps more than enough to make RP a lot less important.

New Glenn and BFR are not impending. New Glenn is per Blue Origin expected in 2020, BFR per Elon Musk in 2024 and both of these dates are a bit aspirational. Resource Prospector is (was?) a very high risk mission, I assume Class D including the launch vehicle, meaning that you could see it at the equivalent of STP-2. New Glenn and BFR would be available for Class D 1 year after first launch. For Class A missions, it would probably take closer to 5 years. If SMD was prioritizing cost rather than success, the Parker Solar Probe would be flying on the Falcon Heavy rather than Delta IV Heavy. Look up the Europa missions thread, they did try to get a Falcon Heavy price for Europa Clipper but SpaceX was not forthcoming.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6364
  • UK
    • Plan 28
  • Liked: 5900
  • Likes Given: 1702
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #108 on: 04/27/2018 09:16 PM »
Here's the relevant sentence. Here's hoping Bridenstine can start on the right foot by getting this decision reversed.

Doesn’t look like it:

Quote
We’re committed to lunar exploration @NASA. Resource Prospector instruments will go forward in an expanded lunar surface campaign. More landers. More science. More exploration. More prospectors. More commercial partners. Ad astra!

https://twitter.com/jimbridenstine/status/989975389870215169

Offline Proponent

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5440
  • Liked: 965
  • Likes Given: 635
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #109 on: 04/27/2018 09:16 PM »
A bit OT, but is there any chance that, to justify Orion/SLS, a lunar sample return will be designed leave the sample in lunar orbit (at least 500 km high) to be collected by a crew?  Some story about "why develop a separate re-entry vehicle when you've got Orion" suggests itself.  Kinda like Asteroid Redirect without the asteroid.
« Last Edit: 04/27/2018 09:17 PM by Proponent »

Offline Phil Stooke

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 437
  • Canada
  • Liked: 249
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #110 on: 04/27/2018 09:35 PM »
It has been discussed for a teleoperated sample return on the far side and could certainly apply to other samples oif desired.


Offline Johnnyhinbos

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1351
  • Boston, MA
  • Liked: 1506
  • Likes Given: 215
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #112 on: 04/28/2018 01:41 AM »
Here is another article on it

www.theverge.com/2018/4/27/17287154/nasa-lunar-surface-robotic-mission-resource-prospector-moon?utm_campaign=lorengrush&utm_content=chorus&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter
The Verge piece was published on April 27 at 9:45 AM.

Bridenstein tweeted the same day at 5:11 PM, “We’re committed to lunar exploration @NASA. Resource Prospector instruments will go forward in an expanded lunar surface campaign. More landers. More science. More exploration. More prospectors. More commercial partners. Ad astra!”

Bridenstein trumps The Verge (pun intended??)
John Hanzl. Author, action / adventure www.johnhanzl.com

Offline AncientU

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6206
  • Liked: 3984
  • Likes Given: 5503
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #113 on: 04/28/2018 11:33 AM »
It has been discussed for a teleoperated sample return on the far side and could certainly apply to other samples oif desired.

Why do sample returns at all.  Let's go to the surface and set up lab facilities in situ.
Geologists on the surface can do more investigation in a day than a rover in a year.
"If we shared everything [we are working on] people would think we are insane!"
-- SpaceX friend of mlindner

Offline DistantTemple

  • Full Member
  • **
  • Posts: 270
  • England
  • Liked: 154
  • Likes Given: 285
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #114 on: 04/28/2018 06:03 PM »
I have just scanned this whole thread, reading bits. It appears that Resource Prospector was never properly funded, never had a planned launch partner, didn't include a lander, and wasn't built to the normal standards of a planetary rover with electronic redundancy and hardening etc.  I have no idea if its size is to support advanced scientific instruments, or if its design has been optimised. I am very surprised at the small wheels, that are likely to have a problem with 10cm stones! and possibly sinking into soft sand as their full cross sectional area is low. Was it really thought out carefully?

Considering the waste of a failed mission, the political risk of promoting a project that fails, and the risk of a setback in the moon programme, it seems that this project would need redesign from the ground up anyway! And since its been hanging around for a few years others have been making progress, including the Chinese, and the 5 finalists in the Google Lunar X prize, its design might be ready for a rehash anyway.

ISTM if real money is to go into a new moon programme, it would be better to perhaps absorb ideas from other projects like Resource Prospector, but generally put the effort and money into new projects, where there is an incentive to work intensively and quickly, and achieve a robust rover.
We can always grow new new dendrites. Reach out and make connections and your world will burst with new insights. Then repose in consciousness.

Offline DistantTemple

  • Full Member
  • **
  • Posts: 270
  • England
  • Liked: 154
  • Likes Given: 285
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #115 on: 04/28/2018 06:05 PM »
The 5 Lunar XPrize finalists were all progressing towards small landers and rovers, and had demonstrated technology. https://lunar.xprize.org/news/blog/important-update-google-lunar-xprize
We can always grow new new dendrites. Reach out and make connections and your world will burst with new insights. Then repose in consciousness.

Online Blackstar

  • Veteran
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11314
  • Liked: 2785
  • Likes Given: 1
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #116 on: 04/28/2018 07:25 PM »
The 5 Lunar XPrize finalists were all progressing towards small landers and rovers, and had demonstrated technology. https://lunar.xprize.org/news/blog/important-update-google-lunar-xprize

They were "progressing" for a long time.


Online Blackstar

  • Veteran
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11314
  • Liked: 2785
  • Likes Given: 1
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #117 on: 04/28/2018 07:41 PM »
I've read a few of the articles about this cancellation. They're generally poor. I've also read some of the commentary, and it's worse (it's amazing how people who had never heard of RP are suddenly up in arms that NASA would cancel it. Sacre bleu! And it's amusing how some people have reflexively blamed this on SLS, which is also responsible for tooth decay and chaos in the Middle East).

It helps to understand what RP was and why it was. RP really was pretty much the last gasp of the 2005 Vision for Space Exploration (remember that?). VSE called for creating some "lunar precursor" missions to fly before humans landed on the Moon. Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter was the only one that got approved, and it was highly successful. These were NOT science missions, but LRO was built with the science community's input and help. It was a model of cooperation.

What came out of that was a funding line to do further lunar missions. And one of the concepts for a mission was a rover that would look for resources on the Moon. But as you know, the VSE got canceled, and even before that happened the robotic lunar program funding line became a political football. It's all very convoluted and murky, but RP in essence became a make-work project for NASA civil servants who did not have an active project to work on--there was money allocated for RP and people were put on that project (sometimes even if they had no relevant skills/knowledge for the task). That's not to say that no good work was done on it. There was some good work. But it was much more of a make-work project than a development program.

If you dig back through presentations made at LEAG meetings, probably as far back as 2011, you can find references to RP or its precursor proposals. But at least five years ago it was clear that NASA had no plans to actually build a rover and fly it. (Note: by "NASA" I mean HEOMD, because RP was technically an HEOMD project and remember that HEOMD's lunar goal was eliminated in the FY11 budget, so it made no sense for HEOMD to do a "precursor" mission to the Moon when they had no plans to go to the Moon.)

I went to a number of LEAG meetings and whenever RP came up for discussion there was just a lot of confusion. NASA officials could never really explain when and how RP would fly. NASA was not going to build a lander, for instance, and at times it was not even going to build a rover. So Resource Prospector for the most part was a collection of instrument proposals, but no supporting hardware: no rover, no lander, no launch vehicle.

So, here we are and people are complaining about how terrible it is that Resource Prospector has been canceled. Except that there were no real plans to fly it at all.

Online Blackstar

  • Veteran
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11314
  • Liked: 2785
  • Likes Given: 1
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #118 on: 04/28/2018 07:43 PM »
A bit OT, but is there any chance that, to justify Orion/SLS, a lunar sample return will be designed leave the sample in lunar orbit (at least 500 km high) to be collected by a crew?  Some story about "why develop a separate re-entry vehicle when you've got Orion" suggests itself.  Kinda like Asteroid Redirect without the asteroid.

Orion-MoonRise was based on this concept. Never got anywhere.

Offline ccdengr

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 108
  • Liked: 49
  • Likes Given: 15
Re: Resource Prospector
« Reply #119 on: 04/28/2018 08:53 PM »
Why do sample returns at all.  Let's go to the surface and set up lab facilities in situ.
Geologists don't even do that on Earth.  I think you have a very naive view of how geoscience works.

Tags: Audi rover