Author Topic: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander  (Read 8220 times)

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« on: 10/27/2023 02:19 pm »
Crosspost:

https://twitter.com/senbillnelson/status/1717904201617908137

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Impressive visit to the @blueorigin Huntsville Engine Production Facility! @NASA is proud to partner with Blue Origin, especially on the Blue Moon human landing system, which will help ensure a steady cadence of astronauts on the Moon to live and work before we venture to Mars.
« Last Edit: 10/27/2023 02:43 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Re: Blue Moon Lunar Lander
« Reply #1 on: 10/27/2023 02:32 pm »
https://twitter.com/blueorigin/status/1717911587724664941

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We unveiled our nearly 3-story Blue Moon MK1 cargo lander demonstrator. MK1's early missions will pave the way and prove technologies for our MK2 lander for @NASA's Human Landing System. #ArtemisV

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These landers hitch a ride into space in New Glennís 7-meter fairing. MK1 will be capable of delivering three metric tons to any location on the Moonís surface. That capacity makes it ideal for a variety of logistics, infrastructure, and science payloads.

https://www.blueorigin.com/blue-moon/mark-1

https://twitter.com/blueorigin/status/1717911592061554934

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Our Blue Moon landers are architected for that future day when lunar ice can be used to manufacture LOX and LH2 propellants on the Moon. #ForTheBenefitOfEarth

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #2 on: 10/27/2023 02:35 pm »
https://www.blueorigin.com/blue-moon/mark-1

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BLUE MOON MARK 1
Single-Launch Cargo Lander


Blue Moon Mark 1 (MK1) is a single-launch, lunar cargo lander that remains on the surface and provides safe, reliable, and affordable access to the lunar environment. MK1 will provide cargo transport, leveraging the 7-meter fairing of the New Glenn launch vehicle, to deliver up to three metric tons anywhere on the lunar surface.

The Pathfinder Mission (MK1-SN001) will be a demonstration mission, with MK1-SN002 and beyond available to payload customers. MK1-SN001 proves out critical systems, including the BE-7 engine, cryogenic fluid power and propulsions systems, avionics, continuous downlink communications, and precision landing within 100 m site accuracy, prior to the uncrewed NASA Human Landing System mission for the Artemis program.
« Last Edit: 10/27/2023 03:16 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline GWH

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #3 on: 10/27/2023 03:36 pm »
Really interesting to see how much the design has changed over time for both the "MK1" as they call it today and the crewed versions.

A lot of apparent differences between MK1 and ILS or MK2

Edit: the last attached image I dug up after and I believe that was the first version we had seen?
« Last Edit: 10/27/2023 03:43 pm by GWH »

Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #4 on: 10/27/2023 03:53 pm »
Presuming the white tanks in the bottom of the Mark 1 lander are LOX tanks and not cargo pods. Also that the Mark 1 retains a large LH tank on the top of the lander like the Mark 2. Where is the cargo compartment (s) in the Mark 1 lander for 3 tonnes of cargo?

Also any guesses to how many BE-7 engines is underneath it? My guess is one.

Offline GWH

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #5 on: 10/27/2023 03:56 pm »
Presuming the white tanks in the bottom of the Mark 1 lander are LOX tanks and not cargo pods. Also that the Mark 1 retains a large LH tank on the top of the lander like the Mark 2. Where is the cargo compartment (s) in the Mark 1 lander for 3 tonnes of cargo?

Also any guesses to how many BE-7 engines is underneath it? My guess is one.

Looks like cargo up top, would have been nice to have it below like ILS.

One engine, the website says "a BE-7".

Offline GWH

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Offline seb21051

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #7 on: 10/27/2023 04:03 pm »
Interested in the people on the main photo. Obviously Bezos and Bill Nelson, and the absence of Smith. The tall guy on the left is possibly Dave Limp?

Any idea as to who the rest are?

Offline Robert_the_Doll

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #8 on: 10/27/2023 06:56 pm »
The tall guy on the right appears to be David Limp and the younger, dark-haired gentleman is John Couluris, the Blue Moon program manager.

Offline Robert_the_Doll

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #9 on: 10/27/2023 07:04 pm »
Presuming the white tanks in the bottom of the Mark 1 lander are LOX tanks and not cargo pods. Also that the Mark 1 retains a large LH tank on the top of the lander like the Mark 2. Where is the cargo compartment (s) in the Mark 1 lander for 3 tonnes of cargo?

Also any guesses to how many BE-7 engines is underneath it? My guess is one.

Looks like cargo up top, would have been nice to have it below like ILS.

One engine, the website says "a BE-7".

It actually says " including the BE-7 engine" in context of proving out the safety and reliability in general terms, so it could refer to the MK-1 having a single engine or it could mean the BE-7 family as a whole.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #10 on: 10/28/2023 03:54 am »
Here's what they proposed in ye golden years. 4 t of payload in a much smaller vehicle! Of course this was done using an expendable Saturn V which also carried a CSM. I read in a book by Von Braun that the Saturn V could carry 15 t to the Lunar surface with a custom designed descent stage.

https://www.thespacereview.com/article/4503/1
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steve G

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #11 on: 10/28/2023 07:27 pm »
Blue Moon will be launched by a two-stage New Glenn. So I'm curious what the launch weight of the Blue Moon will be? Will it, for example, be 90,000 lbs into LEO, and use onboard propellants for TLI and landing, or be lighter (Say 60,000 lbs) to allow the second stage to launch it into a higher transfer orbit to reduce on-board propellant for TLI? It's a bit of a juggling act here.

Offline GWH

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #12 on: 10/28/2023 09:16 pm »

Blue Moon will be launched by a two-stage New Glenn. So I'm curious what the launch weight of the Blue Moon will be? Will it, for example, be 90,000 lbs into LEO, and use onboard propellants for TLI and landing, or be lighter (Say 60,000 lbs) to allow the second stage to launch it into a higher transfer orbit to reduce on-board propellant for TLI? It's a bit of a juggling act here.

I could do a quick CAD scale and estimate but would lean towards the higher side of mass.

It's at least 2, maybe 3 times the size of the original Blue Moon lander presented in 2019 but still has the same stated capacity of 3 tonnes to lunar surface. So obviously staging at a much lower velocity.

I tried doing the trades a few years ago of big vs small on a Blue Moon and it came out pretty neutral.

New Glenn's staging velocity was a given from the payload users guide if I remember correctly, so that puts some pretty hard limits on how much dV the 2nd stage can impart. Staging around LEO with the lander doing more work seemed to be slightly better, but barely. The lander won't have great mass fraction with legs and insulation and everything else.

If New Glenn S2 doesn't achieve good mass fraction then it makes WAY more sense to have a larger lander act as a 3rd stage. One could read into that and this big change in lander design from the original concept as an indication of high energy performance of New Glenn.
« Last Edit: 10/28/2023 09:57 pm by GWH »

Offline deltaV

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #13 on: 10/28/2023 10:09 pm »
One could read into that and this big change in lander design from the original concept as an indication of high energy performance of New Glenn.

https://elvperf.ksc.nasa.gov/Pages/Query.aspx shows New Glenn's high energy performance. There's no need to guess. New Glenn, like every other partially reusable 2 stage launcher that I've seen performance of, isn't very good at high energy orbits without a third stage.

Online JayWee

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #14 on: 10/29/2023 12:20 am »
One could read into that and this big change in lander design from the original concept as an indication of high energy performance of New Glenn.

https://elvperf.ksc.nasa.gov/Pages/Query.aspx shows New Glenn's high energy performance. There's no need to guess. New Glenn, like every other partially reusable 2 stage launcher that I've seen performance of, isn't very good at high energy orbits without a third stage.
I'd be careful with using ELVperf for this and rather try to calculate it from given payload mass + estimated prop.
There were instances (FH) where the data was not showing latest performance and I think NG perf has been on ELVperf for a looong time (or was it changed at some point?)

Online JayWee

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #15 on: 10/29/2023 12:25 am »
Looking at the Mk1 few questions spring to my mind:
- is this self-funded? Are they hoping to get picked up for CLPS or indend to compete for some form of HLS services. I don't remember it being mentioned in the HLS proposal. 
- Is there money/option in Artemis for payload services like this?
- Why design two different vehicles? Can't they make a cargo variant of the Mk2?
- How is the payload going to get unloaded?

Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #16 on: 10/29/2023 01:54 am »
Looking at the Mk1 few questions spring to my mind:
- is this self-funded? Are they hoping to get picked up for CLPS or indend to compete for some form of HLS services. I don't remember it being mentioned in the HLS proposal. 
- Is there money/option in Artemis for payload services like this?
- Why design two different vehicles? Can't they make a cargo variant of the Mk2?
- How is the payload going to get unloaded?
Think the main function of the Mark 1 lander is to test out the technologies of the Mark 2 lander in a cheap platform.

If the Mark 1 lander works than Blue Origin should be able to pickup some CLPS contracts if any of the other CLPS landers falters. Or Blue Origin could lobby for a CLPS payload.

A cargo version of the Mark 2 lander requires orbital refueling. The Mark 1 lander does not, hence the small 3 tonne payload.

Also the Mark 1 lander is a small semi-expendable delivery vehicle to the Lunar surface. While the Mark 2 lander is a large crew taxi or high priority cargo transport that should not fail as well as being able to ascend back to NRHO .

As to how the cargo is unloaded. That depends where they put the cargo on the Mark 1 lander. If as suggested upthread on a platform on top of the lander, the cargo will be hoisted down with a crane or davit. Alternatively the lander could have 3 LOX tanks on the bottom plus a cargo pod/module that can be deployed with a deployable overhead crane.

Offline Phil Stooke

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #17 on: 10/29/2023 02:28 am »
CLPS included a second round of companies including Blue Origin who can compete for missions.  At this stage CLPS is for robotic science and engineering payloads but when Artemis is flying a range of additional CLPS opportunities will arise, such as pre-landed supplies and equipment to support human missions, and larger landers will be needed.

Online TheRadicalModerate

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #18 on: 10/31/2023 07:16 pm »
Looking at the Mk1 few questions spring to my mind:
- is this self-funded? Are they hoping to get picked up for CLPS or indend to compete for some form of HLS services. I don't remember it being mentioned in the HLS proposal. 
- Is there money/option in Artemis for payload services like this?
- Why design two different vehicles? Can't they make a cargo variant of the Mk2?
- How is the payload going to get unloaded?

I have many of the same questions, plus a few others:

- Are they out of their freakin' minds continuing work on Mark 1?  Why aren't they just doing an HDL version of Mark 2 (Human-Class Delivery Lander, the cargo version of HLS, as specified in the SLD/SLT BAA) and relegating Mark 1 to the dustbin of history?

- Why would Nelson, Melroy, and Free allow themselves to be photographed in front of this thing?

- Is this actually happening, or are they simply using an old Mark 1 mockup to do BE-7 fit checks of some kind?

My Mark 2 (HLS) modeling, using the 16t dry mass stated in the the Blue PR blurbs after source selection, requires 48t of hydrolox to be able to do NRHO-LS(polar)-NRHO, assuming Isp=450s for the BE-7.  This obviously requires refueling in NRHO by the cislunar transport.

But I can get 3t of payload to the lunar surface with no refueling at all if the HDL dry mass is 10t (i.e., the crew module weighs 6t and is removed), and it launches with 40t of prop.  That requires that New Glenn be able to put 53t into LEO, which is more than the magic 45t number.  But the magic 45t number assumes a reusable core.  Doesn't it make a lot more sense just to expend a core for the odd CLPS mission than to engineer two completely different vehicles?

Sometimes I wonder if Jeff actually knows about the sunk-cost fallacy.

I guess the other explanation could be that the NASA PR folks were getting squirrelly about lack of anything that could be shown to the public, and they just wanted the most plausible photo they could get.  I would hope that they had a mockup of Mark 2 available by now, but we are talking about Blue here: step-by-step, with agonizing hesitations between each step.
« Last Edit: 10/31/2023 07:20 pm by TheRadicalModerate »

Offline clongton

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Re: Blue Moon Mk1 Single Use Lunar Cargo Lander
« Reply #19 on: 10/31/2023 08:01 pm »
- How is the payload going to get unloaded?

Here is a 7-minute video of Jeff Bezsos presenting the Blue Moon Cargo Lander. At 5 minutes into the video you can watch the payload being deployed to the surface. Granted, this isn''t the Mk-1, but they will probably approach payload deployment in a similar manner.

« Last Edit: 10/31/2023 08:02 pm by clongton »
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