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General Discussion => Space Policy Discussion => Topic started by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 01:54 PM

Title: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 01:54 PM
10am Eastern.

Webcast: Link (http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=7457bd6b-1721-4c17-994c-77595f3099ae&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=7&YearDisplay=2010)

Congress version starts here:
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.345
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:05 PM
Webcast coverage starting; not getting any sound yet.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:07 PM
No sound here either. A bit of a farce. Seeing what I can pick up on captions.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:08 PM
Seems to be in close-caption mode.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Owen on 07/15/2010 02:10 PM
Got sound on refresh.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:10 PM
Woo, we have sound and we've not missed anything :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:10 PM
Got sound on refresh.
Got it without, too.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:10 PM
Sen Hutchison says it's a very special day and will make a motion at the end.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:13 PM
"We began (the process) more than four months ago to tackle the balance between commercial and a robust mission. The president's plan would have ended the US dominance in space, and ended ISS' future, and manned space flight.

"We are charting a different course. Many people thought we would never be able to do it. But we have. We can close big gaps between members and the admin.

"I am deeply greatful to Sen Nelson for his leadership. (Mentions other senators). But Sen Nelson, I thought we could work together for the benefit of NASA and the workforce. I fully support this bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 02:13 PM
Senator Hutchison praising Senator Nelson and Chairman Rockefeller. Nice to see bipartisan support for space again.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/15/2010 02:14 PM
Hutchinson also gives props to Obama for commercial crew to LEO.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:15 PM
"We address Commercial vehicles in a measured way. We protect our nation in the event commercial providers face challenges, by starting work on a HLV IMMEDIATELY and a crew capsule.

"By starting work IMMEDIATELY we'll have an exploration vehicle, on an agressive schedule.

"We add STS-135 next summer."
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:17 PM
"We're doing the right thing for America"

Sen Rockefeller praise for the cooperation.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:18 PM
In Senator Hutchison's motion, sounds like all the amendments were modified in some form or another.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:19 PM
Voice vote; the ayes have it.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:20 PM
Senator Nelson:

"I just simply want to say thank you to everybody. We have reached consensus, even with the White House (wow!?). We will be marking up next week."
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 02:20 PM
So the amendements were accepted as modified?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:20 PM
Senator Nelson:

Praise for staffers, including Jeff Bingham - for doing the hard work :)

Short statement.

Senator Vitter also very happy: "This is a very strong bi-partisan product. Rather than re-inventing the wheel, this incorporates shuttle technology and Orion."

(So SD HLV?)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:21 PM
So the amendements were accepted as modified?
Sounds like it, but I haven't seen any drafts; we may only see the version of the bill voted out of committee.

Senator Nelson:

"I just simply want to say thank you to everybody. We have reached consensus, even with the White House (wow!?). We will be marking up next week."
The markup hearing he refers to is with the appropriations subcommittee:
http://appropriations.senate.gov/sc-commerce.cfm
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 02:22 PM
Nelson also thanked Senator Shelby.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:23 PM
Senator Vitter wants a roadmap for dev. Think he mentioned 2016 to be ready?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/15/2010 02:24 PM
Boxer seems happy also. Seems her amendment was accepted. Said tech funding has been increased.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:25 PM
Heh -- Senator Boxer hints that she'll be working on amendment(s) to the bill on the floor.  (And also that she wants to work on the language for commercial dev, too.)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:25 PM
Can't see her name, but another Senator says she will be talking with some people who want a little bit more done with the commercial element. Some concerns about the lanuage over the workforce. Overall congratulations.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: raketen on 07/15/2010 02:25 PM
Senator Vitter wants a roadmap for dev. Think he mentioned 2016 to be ready?
That's what I heard.  Everybody seems to be onboard on this bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Ben the Space Brit on 07/15/2010 02:26 PM
So the amendements were accepted as modified?

We'll probably have to read the finalised bill to know that.  Anyone know where (if?) they might be published on the 'Net?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:27 PM
Can't see her name, but another Senator says she will be talking with some people who want a little bit more done with the commercial element. Some concerns about the lanuage over the workforce. Overall congratulations.
That's Senator Boxer.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:27 PM
"It's not a perfect bill, some say it didn't go far enough, but it does provide HLV in a shorter timeframe. Continues shuttle with STS-135. Allows for the extreemly talented workforce to stay in place longer."

Still concerned about the Florida workforce. But overall happy.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:29 PM
So the amendements were accepted as modified?

We'll probably have to read the finalised bill to know that.  Anyone know where (if?) they might be published on the 'Net?
Wouldn't be surprised if one of the news organizations covering this posts it soon, but it will eventually be available on the Library of Congress site (a.k.a., 'Thomas'):
http://thomas.loc.gov/
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:29 PM
Senator Warner wants to speak on the bill, but is not there right now.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: PahTo on 07/15/2010 02:29 PM

Wow, very curious to see what the actual mark-up language/amendment(s) are (or what they become in the final bill).  Very exciting though!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:30 PM
Talking about S. 3304, Equal Access to 21st Century Communications Act now.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: raketen on 07/15/2010 02:33 PM

Wow, very curious to see what the actual mark-up language/amendment(s) are (or what they become in the final bill).  Very exciting though!

Senator Warner was reported as wanting the following amendment:

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., wants to spend $500 million on commercial crew development in 2011 — an increase over earlier drafts of the bill — by taking money from the new heavy-lift rocket and launch system. He will introduce an amendment to that effect today.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DavisSTS on 07/15/2010 02:33 PM
Isn't that the fella that ran for president on right now?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:34 PM
Isn't that the fella that ran for president on right now?
Yes, Senator Kerry.
http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=CommitteeMembers
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 02:35 PM

Wow, very curious to see what the actual mark-up language/amendment(s) are (or what they become in the final bill).  Very exciting though!

Senator Warner was reported as wanting the following amendment:

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., wants to spend $500 million on commercial crew development in 2011 — an increase over earlier drafts of the bill — by taking money from the new heavy-lift rocket and launch system. He will introduce an amendment to that effect today.

The amendement were accepted as modified. So who knows if it's been modified. Although I wouldn't be surprised if it had been accepted as is.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:41 PM
Hmmm...parsing what Senator Warner says, it sounds like the top line number(s) may have been increased a little bit.  Guess we'll find out, but going to be a question of whether those numbers survive on the appropriations side.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:41 PM
Senator Warner's arrived.

"I want to highlight two things, as an advocate of commercial space. Wanted the funding levels to move up from the draft. Very important good faith effort. Was going to withdraw his two ammendments, but it's already passed.

"I feel very strongly we need to upgrade the infrastructure at all our space sites, such as Wallops etc.

"Appreciates Nelson and Hutchison on hearing his concerns about commercial space."

Seems happy with things.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: raketen on 07/15/2010 02:41 PM

Wow, very curious to see what the actual mark-up language/amendment(s) are (or what they become in the final bill).  Very exciting though!

Senator Warner was reported as wanting the following amendment:

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., wants to spend $500 million on commercial crew development in 2011 — an increase over earlier drafts of the bill — by taking money from the new heavy-lift rocket and launch system. He will introduce an amendment to that effect today.

The amendement were accepted as modified. So who knows if it's been modified. Although I wouldn't be surprised if it had been accepted as is.

$500M moved from heavy-lift to commercial would be a big change.  Perhaps they split the difference.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:43 PM
Senator Hutchison:

"I want to make sure we recognise the staff that worked so hard on the bill. Amazing work. (names and then)... Jeff Bingham who knows this issue more than anyone in this capital." :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:43 PM
And that's a wrap; markup adjourned.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 02:44 PM
"Everyone feels they've given something, but fairly and for the benefit of this country." - Senator Hutchison.

That's it!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 02:44 PM
Hutchison thanks Jeff Bingham. She says that he knows more on this than any of us in Washington.   Time for him to ask for a raise...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/15/2010 02:45 PM
Yay for 51D Mascot :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: raketen on 07/15/2010 02:45 PM
"Everyone feels they've given something, but fairly and for the benefit of this country." - Senator Hutchison.

That's it!

Guess the next item is Sen. Nelson's news conference?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: zerm on 07/15/2010 02:45 PM
Senator Hutchison:

"I want to make sure we recognise the staff that worked so hard on the bill. Amazing work. (names and then)... Jeff Bingham who knows this issue more than anyone in this capital." :)

OUTSTANDING!

One person whose posts I seek out and look forward to. An outstanding NSF member!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 02:48 PM
Here is what happens next to this bill:

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22163.msg614614#msg614614

Curious wording about the timing of submitting to the President.  If it's an authorization bill, that's unlikely to get through Congress and to the President that soon.  There's been reports about mid-month being timing for when the Senate authorizing committee might vote to send a bill to the floor.  If it's not a bill, whatever the plan is would still need to be passed in some form by Congress.


Chalk it up to reporter confusion...Jay knows a lot about space, but not so much about the legislative process. The 15th is the date set for Committee Mark-up of a bill, where it will consider any proposed amendments, then vote to report it to the Senate (or not) as amended. Then it gets in line for consideration by the full Senate, presumably via a unanimous consent procedure, since floor time (for debate, etc.) is VERY limited. Then, of course, there's the issue of House action, either on a Senate-passed bill or a version of their own, followed by, if needed, a joint Senate-House Conference to iron out differences, and acceptance of that outcome by both houses after that, so quite a few steps before being "presented" to the President. (There IS the possibility, as well, that, at some point along the line, the White House/President may engage in discussions/negotiations with the Congress, so it is "possible" that the final language will be "acceptable".) But I can tell you, as of this moment, the final draft language of the bill in question has not been completed.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/15/2010 02:48 PM
Does this mean peace can now break out ?  8)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/15/2010 02:51 PM
Does anyone know when we'll see the numbers in the bill?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/15/2010 02:53 PM
Senator Hutchison:

"I want to make sure we recognise the staff that worked so hard on the bill. Amazing work. (names and then)... Jeff Bingham who knows this issue more than anyone in this capital." :)

OUTSTANDING!

One person whose posts I seek out and look forward to. An outstanding NSF member!

SECONDED!!

Nothing short of amazing they got to this point with concensus, and I'm sure we all want to extend our thanks to him for all his help for what I would consider saving HSF, but more particularly: SKILLED JOBS, in the United States.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 02:53 PM
Here is what happens next to this bill:

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22163.msg614614#msg614614

Curious wording about the timing of submitting to the President.  If it's an authorization bill, that's unlikely to get through Congress and to the President that soon.  There's been reports about mid-month being timing for when the Senate authorizing committee might vote to send a bill to the floor.  If it's not a bill, whatever the plan is would still need to be passed in some form by Congress.


Chalk it up to reporter confusion...Jay knows a lot about space, but not so much about the legislative process. The 15th is the date set for Committee Mark-up of a bill, where it will consider any proposed amendments, then vote to report it to the Senate (or not) as amended. Then it gets in line for consideration by the full Senate, presumably via a unanimous consent procedure, since floor time (for debate, etc.) is VERY limited. Then, of course, there's the issue of House action, either on a Senate-passed bill or a version of their own, followed by, if needed, a joint Senate-House Conference to iron out differences, and acceptance of that outcome by both houses after that, so quite a few steps before being "presented" to the President. (There IS the possibility, as well, that, at some point along the line, the White House/President may engage in discussions/negotiations with the Congress, so it is "possible" that the final language will be "acceptable".) But I can tell you, as of this moment, the final draft language of the bill in question has not been completed.
51D Mascot can provide an inside take, but given Senator Boxer's comments, it doesn't sound like the bill will go the unanimous consent route on the Senate floor.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: e of pi on 07/15/2010 02:55 PM
I just wanted to say that this bill really excites me. I'm a a second-year aerospace student, and I hope to work in the space industry someday, and this seems like it will do good stuff for NASA with the new (possibly SD?) heavy launch vehicle and continued support for commercial space.

To put it another way, this bill has interested me enough in a Congressional hearing that I found this forum while looking for more information. So even if the bill dies, I got one thing out of it by leading me here.

Now, if you'lle excuse me, I have to return to trying to read every thread in the forum archives at once.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/15/2010 02:57 PM
Welcome to the forum e :)

Stick around, many interesting folks frequent this place.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: AndrewSTS on 07/15/2010 03:03 PM
Sounds hopeful! Has to be a SD HLV, right?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 03:09 PM
Sounds hopeful! Has to be a SD HLV, right?

Implicitly, but not explicitly. They require NASA to use as much existing STS and CxP hardware and contracts as possible (including explicitly ET-94), while not doing the engineering for NASA and selecting a specific option.

That said, the real battle between sidemount and inline begins today...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: quark on 07/15/2010 03:09 PM
Sounds hopeful! Has to be a SD HLV, right?

Not exactly.  the language says it should make use of shuttle and constellation assets "to the greatest extent practicable".  It will be up to the administration and NASA to determine the specifics.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: e of pi on 07/15/2010 03:10 PM
Welcome to the forum e :)

Stick around, many interesting folks frequent this place.

It certainly seems like it. Is there any sort of typical thing for new members, someplace to acclimatize? I found the acronym page, but...I guess I'm thinking more of trying to get a feel for the culture of the board. I sort of feel like a kid sitting at the adults table for Thanksgiving for the first time...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/15/2010 03:12 PM
Welcome to the forum e :)

Stick around, many interesting folks frequent this place.

It certainly seems like it. Is there any sort of typical thing for new members, someplace to acclimatize? I found the acronym page, but...I guess I'm thinking more of trying to get a feel for the culture of the board. I sort of feel like a kid sitting at the adults table for Thanksgiving for the first time...

There's an introduction thread if you want to check that out - http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=606.0
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 03:15 PM
Welcome to the forum e :)

Stick around, many interesting folks frequent this place.

It certainly seems like it. Is there any sort of typical thing for new members, someplace to acclimatize? I found the acronym page, but...I guess I'm thinking more of trying to get a feel for the culture of the board. I sort of feel like a kid sitting at the adults table for Thanksgiving for the first time...

Welcome to the site's forum :)

The Q&A sections: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?board=36.0 are usually a good place to get your feet wet, but feel free to dive in. There's a lot of experts and people who work with the vehicles here, but don't feel intimidated.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 03:16 PM
Sounds hopeful! Has to be a SD HLV, right?

Implicitly, but not explicitly. They require NASA to use as much existing STS and CxP hardware and contracts as possible (including explicitly ET-94), while not doing the engineering for NASA and selecting a specific option.

That said, the real battle between sidemount and inline begins today...

Another trade study maybe.....although technically they've already been there with that.

Will be interesting to follow regardless :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/15/2010 03:16 PM
Welcome to the forum e :)

Stick around, many interesting folks frequent this place.

It certainly seems like it. Is there any sort of typical thing for new members, someplace to acclimatize? I found the acronym page, but...I guess I'm thinking more of trying to get a feel for the culture of the board. I sort of feel like a kid sitting at the adults table for Thanksgiving for the first time...

There's an introduction thread if you want to check that out - http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=606.0

hey this is cool ,hadn't seen this thread before.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 03:17 PM
Does this mean peace can now break out ?  8)

I'm waiting on seeing the amended draft of the bill, but I'm hopeful. :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 03:21 PM
Anybody seen a link to watch the remarks from the Senate Radio and TV Gallery at 11:45 am Eastern?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mmoulder on 07/15/2010 03:22 PM
e of pi,

Glad to see I am not the first new-comer to this forum!   8)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DaveJSC on 07/15/2010 03:31 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 03:31 PM
Here is Senator Hutchison's statement:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=7457bd6b-1721-4c17-994c-77595f3099ae&Statement_id=7ceb6eb1-6902-49d0-b9be-934420b484b8&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=7&YearDisplay=2010
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 03:37 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!

Heh.  Because we wouldn't want to bail out commercial companies for a few Billion when we can bail out MSFC (again) for another $10-20B.  Who cares that they haven't gotten a new vehicle out of the powerpoint stage in my lifetime.  At least Congress is taking its job seriously of protecting us from those evil free marketeers who are always needing bailouts!

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 03:42 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!

Heh.  Because we wouldn't want to bail out commercial companies for a few Billion when we can bail out MSFC and JSC (again) for another $10-20B.  Who cares that they've screwed up about a dozen consecutive launch vehicle programs over the past 20 years.  At least Congress is taking its job seriously of protecting us from those evil free marketeers who are always needing bailouts!
~Jon

The backup argument never made any sense. The commercial companies are each other's backup. If one of them fails, you replace them (such as was done with Kistler under COTS). In any event, I never expected Congress to go along with a commercial HLV. So I can't say that I am disapointed or surprised by the turn of events.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/15/2010 03:43 PM
Sounds hopeful! Has to be a SD HLV, right?

Implicitly, but not explicitly. They require NASA to use as much existing STS and CxP hardware and contracts as possible (including explicitly ET-94), while not doing the engineering for NASA and selecting a specific option.

That said, the real battle between sidemount and inline begins today...

Another trade study maybe.....although technically they've already been there with that.

Will be interesting to follow regardless :)

Or they can just finish the HLV study...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/15/2010 03:44 PM
That said, the real battle between sidemount and inline begins today...

Another trade study maybe.....although technically they've already been there with that.

Will be interesting to follow regardless :)

Presumably the new launcher programme will be mostly MSFC? Isn't side-mount more favoured by JSC?

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 03:47 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!

Heh.  Because we wouldn't want to bail out commercial companies for a few Billion when we can bail out MSFC (again) for another $10-20B.  Who cares that they haven't gotten a new vehicle out of the powerpoint stage in my lifetime.  At least Congress is taking its job seriously of protecting us from those evil free marketeers who are always needing bailouts!

~Jon

That's a little cynical Jon, not like you.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 03:48 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!

Heh.  Because we wouldn't want to bail out commercial companies for a few Billion when we can bail out MSFC and JSC (again) for another $10-20B.  Who cares that they've screwed up about a dozen consecutive launch vehicle programs over the past 20 years.  At least Congress is taking its job seriously of protecting us from those evil free marketeers who are always needing bailouts!
~Jon

The backup argument never made any sense. The commercial companies are each other's backup. If one of them fails, you replace them (such as was done with Kistler under COTS). In any event, I never expected Congress to go along with a commercial HLV. So I can't say that I am disapointed or surprised by the turn of events.

I'm also amused that so many here seem to be so happy with this when:

1-There's still no plan or details, or nearer-term destinations.  This is building an HLV without a mission. 
2-The shuttle won't be extended past 2011 now other than a single extra mission, so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup. 

So apparently the gap, and the inability to support the ISS without shuttle, and the lack of a firm plan weren't so much issues as not having a big rocket to feel good about?

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/15/2010 03:50 PM
So apparently the gap, and the inability to support the ISS without shuttle, and the lack of a firm plan weren't so much issues as not having a big rocket to feel good about?

That was rhetoric. It was always about the jobs and the money.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 03:50 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!

Heh.  Because we wouldn't want to bail out commercial companies for a few Billion when we can bail out MSFC (again) for another $10-20B.  Who cares that they haven't gotten a new vehicle out of the powerpoint stage in my lifetime.  At least Congress is taking its job seriously of protecting us from those evil free marketeers who are always needing bailouts!

~Jon

That's a little cynical Jon, not like you.

I'm just frustrated at the blatant hypocrisy here.  Shelby can talk about too big to fail, then MSFC gets another $10B in mulligans.  At what point will failure to deliver anywhere near on-time or on-budget ever result in negative consequences for NASA's fair-haired boys?  Why is commercial held to a higher standard than the people being given an order of magnitude more money?

I guess it was more the whole attitude that this compromise was somehow protecting the taxpayer from a bailout, when really it's a bailout bigger than the worst-case bailout that Cernan and Armstrong were peddling.

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 03:54 PM
I think I'm going to shut-up now.  Those of us who wanted to see NASA get out of the 70s have more or less lost at this point.  There are a couple of crumbs, and the dot-product of NASA HSF and something actually enabling spacefaring is now a little bit bigger (we're now say a little bit on the good side of orthogonal, instead of actively moving in the wrong direction).  But a lot of potential was wasted here.

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/15/2010 03:55 PM
It's not perfect Jon, a lot would have prefered a shuttle extension into 2012 plus, but compared to FY2011, this is much better.

You can't even begin to say this is the same when the previous was a five year study for HLV and this is immediate start developing the HLV.

It's not Cernan's fault about the bailout comment, it's Bolden's comment for admitting it.

Money to skilled workers who have run shuttle vs rich stockholders with portfolios at commercial companies is always going to get my vote.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/15/2010 03:57 PM
"We address Commercial vehicles in a measured way. We protect our nation in the event commercial providers face challenges, by starting work on a HLV IMMEDIATELY and a crew capsule.

"By starting work IMMEDIATELY we'll have an exploration vehicle, on an agressive schedule.

"We add STS-135 next summer."

so 135 is offical now? :D :D And SDHLV begins that same year. Workforce transition should be smoother now.

They said that the white house agreed to this, but I have yet to see concrete proof..........lets see if he signs it ;)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: 2552 on 07/15/2010 03:58 PM
So is the "Major Breakthrough" press conference (http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=31245) with Nelson and Hutchison happening now, or was the Executive Session it?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: agman25 on 07/15/2010 03:58 PM
It's not perfect Jon, a lot would have prefered a shuttle extension into 2012 plus, but compared to FY2011, this is much better.

You can't even begin to say this is the same when the previous was a five year study for HLV and this is immediate start developing the HLV.

It's not Cernan's fault about the bailout comment, it's Bolden's comment for admitting it.

Money to skilled workers who have run shuttle vs rich stockholders with portfolios at commercial companies is always going to get my vote.

So commercial aerospace companies do not have skilled workers ?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 03:58 PM
I think I'm going to shut-up now.  Those of us who wanted to see NASA get out of the 70s have more or less lost at this point.  There are a couple of crumbs, and the dot-product of NASA HSF and something actually enabling spacefaring is now a little bit bigger (we're now say a little bit on the good side of orthogonal, instead of actively moving in the wrong direction).  But a lot of potential was wasted here.

~Jon

Perhaps but at least commercial crew and things like propellant depots are being funded. So we are one step closer to being a space fairing nation with some of these measures.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Orbiter on 07/15/2010 03:58 PM
Forgive my ignorance of the structure of the way bills go through the senate (I need to watch that school house rock video again lol), but what happens next? Does it go through a vote in the senate or goes straight to the President?

Orbiter
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 03:59 PM
So is the "Major Breakthrough" press conference (http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=31245) with Nelson and Hutchison happening now, or was the Executive Session it?

It's not being webcast as far as I can tell.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 04:00 PM
1-There's still no plan or details, or nearer-term destinations.  This is building an HLV without a mission. 

It's better than that. The bill (if you read it) includes a provision for a National Academies study in what to do with manned spaceflight 2014-2023. This is the same as what all the unmanned programs do, and allows a concrete set of goals to be laid down with a politician dictating priorities...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 04:01 PM
"We address Commercial vehicles in a measured way. We protect our nation in the event commercial providers face challenges, by starting work on a HLV IMMEDIATELY and a crew capsule.

"By starting work IMMEDIATELY we'll have an exploration vehicle, on an agressive schedule.

"We add STS-135 next summer."

so 135 is offical now? :D :D And SDHLV begins that same year. Workforce transition should be smoother now.

They said that the white house agreed to this, but I have yet to see concrete proof..........lets see if he signs it ;)

Not yet, process to follow on that. Certainly more hopeful.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: ras391 on 07/15/2010 04:02 PM
does anyone have a link to watch or listen?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/15/2010 04:02 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!

Heh.  Because we wouldn't want to bail out commercial companies for a few Billion when we can bail out MSFC and JSC (again) for another $10-20B.  Who cares that they've screwed up about a dozen consecutive launch vehicle programs over the past 20 years.  At least Congress is taking its job seriously of protecting us from those evil free marketeers who are always needing bailouts!
~Jon

The backup argument never made any sense. The commercial companies are each other's backup. If one of them fails, you replace them (such as was done with Kistler under COTS). In any event, I never expected Congress to go along with a commercial HLV. So I can't say that I am disapointed or surprised by the turn of events.

I'm also amused that so many here seem to be so happy with this when:

1-There's still no plan or details, or nearer-term destinations.  This is building an HLV without a mission. 
2-The shuttle won't be extended past 2011 now other than a single extra mission, so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup. 

So apparently the gap, and the inability to support the ISS without shuttle, and the lack of a firm plan weren't so much issues as not having a big rocket to feel good about?

~Jon


I don't know why your so angry. They put SDHLV in. Ok? Thats, as we agreed previously, loads better than fy2011 or por. Its a heck of a big step and you can't expect them to do everything all at once. Just doing that  is its own miracle.



Its far from perfect but given the situation id say its "ideal" .
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/15/2010 04:03 PM
"We address Commercial vehicles in a measured way. We protect our nation in the event commercial providers face challenges, by starting work on a HLV IMMEDIATELY and a crew capsule.

"By starting work IMMEDIATELY we'll have an exploration vehicle, on an agressive schedule.

"We add STS-135 next summer."

so 135 is offical now? :D :D And SDHLV begins that same year. Workforce transition should be smoother now.

They said that the white house agreed to this, but I have yet to see concrete proof..........lets see if he signs it ;)

Not yet, process to follow on that. Certainly more hopeful.
i suppose bolden could block it if he really hates STS that much -_-
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/15/2010 04:04 PM
That removes the bailout threat, because if commercial don't get on line in time, they won't get a handout, we'll have the HLV as the backup. Very good!

Heh.  Because we wouldn't want to bail out commercial companies for a few Billion when we can bail out MSFC (again) for another $10-20B.  Who cares that they haven't gotten a new vehicle out of the powerpoint stage in my lifetime.  At least Congress is taking its job seriously of protecting us from those evil free marketeers who are always needing bailouts!

~Jon


"Commercial" is being funded.  It will exist.  It will be the primary method for LEO when it becomes available.

It seems to simply take a pragmattic approach to bringing it online and starts with answering the fundamental and foundational questions that are still unanswered.  That is a good thing and you should know that the first step in any project process is getting a solid project plan and requirements definition.  It is ironic you want all the money for something by definition that should not be government-funded development, yet at the same time don't want any terms and conditions to go with it. 

Welcome to the party but you really should roll back the whining and assumption "some" are better than everyone else. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 04:08 PM
... so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup.

In addition to the ESA & JAXA modules, both EELV's have the capability to provide material support to ISS, at least excepting "the last mile". But that is solvable. 

Quote
So apparently the gap, and the inability to support the ISS without shuttle, and the lack of a firm plan weren't so much issues as not having a big rocket to feel good about?

~Jon

It's the lack of a firm plan for the HLV that makes me nervous. What's it going to be used for? There are great possibilities, both good and bad, and without a plan or mission, it's too easy for extrordinary waste to set in at the cost of other more worthy efforts. I want the HLV, I really, really do, but I want it knowing how it's supposed to be used.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Orbiter on 07/15/2010 04:08 PM
i suppose bolden good block it if he really hates STS that much -_-

Obviously he liked STS enough to fly on it 4 times, twice as Commander.

Orbiter
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Lars_J on 07/15/2010 04:08 PM
As long as decent funding levels for commercial crew and cargo are maintained, all hope is not lost. They are the true future of American HSF. In LEO and beyond.

I agree with Jon - I just don't see the benefit of pushing ahead with a SDHLV, when there are no funds for actual payloads. We'll be stuck with a HLV that only launches once or twice per year, at enormous cost. BEO exploration will not become economical this way.

But at least it is better than CxP. Developing one rocket instead of two, imagine that!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/15/2010 04:09 PM
i suppose bolden good block it if he really hates STS that much -_-

Obviously he liked STS enough to fly on it in the pilot/Commander seat 4 times.

Orbiter

Yet he repeadtedly stated after fy 2011 was announced how much it needed to go away, quickly, with no hope whatsoever of extension...............
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 04:12 PM
i suppose bolden good block it if he really hates STS that much -_-
If the language we've seen in the draft were to be enacted, the administrator would be obligated to fly the mission, with the caveats in the language.  (I'm not sure that the administrator has necessarily objected to flying the LON hardware; the additional mission is often conflated with different ideas about 'extension.')

Quote
(1) SPACE SHUTTLE MISSION.

The Administrator shall fly the Launch-On-Need Shuttle mission currently designated in the Shuttle Flight Manifest dated February 28, 2010, to the ISS in fiscal year 2011, but no earlier than June 1, 2011, unless required earlier by an operations contingency, and pending the results of the assessment required by paragraph (2) and the determination under paragraph (3)(A).

In this context, I believe 'shall' means 'must,' and I don't know that the caveats provide much wiggle room.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 04:13 PM
I'm also amused that so many here seem to be so happy with this when:

1-There's still no plan or details, or nearer-term destinations.  This is building an HLV without a mission. 
2-The shuttle won't be extended past 2011 now other than a single extra mission, so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup. 

So apparently the gap, and the inability to support the ISS without shuttle, and the lack of a firm plan weren't so much issues as not having a big rocket to feel good about?

Indeed. It seems that those items (the gap, ISS support, firm plan, mission details, deadlines, near-term destinations) were issues of convenience to utilize in the push for an HLV and bash the WH's FY2011 plan, rather than issues people actually thought were important.

That said, my view on the bill is rather more optimistic than yours, although I'm of course waiting to see the actual contents of the current bill. Even if the bill is suboptimal, it seems like it'd be the best that can be politically achieved at the current time, and seems to do a lot for important items like commercial crew and space technology.

I'm also guessing that odds are less than 50% that the SDHLV would end up surviving development to the point that it'd actually be able to take business away from commercial launchers. There's wasted money there, sure, but in the meantime the SDHLV dev would also give commercial companies time to develop to the point that former shuttle/constellation workers would be able to transition to them in higher numbers.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/15/2010 04:15 PM
Yet he repeadtedly stated after fy 2011 was announced how much it needed to go away, quickly, with no hope whatsoever of extension...............

I believe he hoped, as Jon did, that he could move NASA out of 1970's launch technology and have it become the leader in propulsion technology research and development. This bill will now cede that mantle to the Air Force and private industry, as they are the only ones now applying modern technology to a new breed of launchers.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Orbiter on 07/15/2010 04:16 PM
i suppose bolden good block it if he really hates STS that much -_-

Obviously he liked STS enough to fly on it in the pilot/Commander seat 4 times.

Orbiter

Yet he repeadtedly stated after fy 2011 was announced how much it needed to go away, quickly, with no hope whatsoever of extension...............

Probably was reciting to the POTUS's words to him and trying to add enthusiasm. Its like a pilot coming out during a heated political debate on a airplane he once flew with pride and saying he is totally against it continuing with no bird to replace it.

Orbiter
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jason Sole on 07/15/2010 04:18 PM
The way I read it is commercial still gets its money (more than the draft too, due to ONE senator wanting pork for his commercial friends in his State!) but are more accountable, as opposed to throwing money at them. Strange as to why some (two) people aren't happy, maybe they just hate shuttle and only want to see shuttle and shuttle derived die, so that there's no competition. Could be a lack of confidence and the hope for that multi-billion bailout Bolden promised them.

I would have been happier with the bill wiping the six billion, handing it to shuttle and telling the commercial providers to prove themselves by completing CRS on time, and then be awarded for crew, not before! They've got investors, they can afford to prove themselves. If they can't, they aren't stable enough.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 04:25 PM
...
The politicans just compromised :o Will you?
My comments were about Jon, not myself.

I'm not a politician, so my job is not to compromise. An HLV isn't necessary, especially when it takes most of the funding away from tech R&D. I'm willing to compromise on my opinion of an HLV if:
1) There's actually money for real hardware/payloads to fly on it... usually payloads cost 10x the launch vehicle, I'll settle for 4x (more like Apollo). That means an increase of many billions of dollars a year is needed to make it worthwhile (you NEED a higher flight rate than just 2 a year, otherwise just use a dang EELV). 2) An architecture is chosen (and ACTIVELY DEVELOPED) such that it can still can survive and work if the HLV is cut. I'm not willing to repeat another post-Apollo or post-Shuttle gap.

That said, if NASA's budget is increased by even a billion dollars, then wasting money on an unused HLV isn't nearly so bad. Even half a billion helps.

I maintain that NASA would be better off if LC-39 went away and they were forced to focus only on payloads and missions instead of launch vehicles.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Bill White on 07/15/2010 04:27 PM
Any news about the press conference?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MrTim on 07/15/2010 04:31 PM
Forgive my ignorance of the structure of the way bills go through the senate (I need to watch that school house rock video again lol), but what happens next? Does it go through a vote in the senate or goes straight to the President?

Orbiter
I think people are getting a bit carried away here...

Remember, the Senate and the House must both pass the same bill. If the House produces one bill and the Senate passes a different bill, then there will have to be a conference with persons from both House and Senate to hammer-out a compromise bill that will then have to be passed in both the House and the Senate. Only after both the House and Senate pass the same bill with that bill go to the President for his signature. This thing is not yet set in stone.

It may be that areas of this bill are not specific in order to preserve enough wiggle room for everybody to agree. The Cx huggers (like Shelby) need to be careful, because this administration has demonstrated a willingness to push things to the limits of the law (and, one might argue, a bit beyond) so the lack of specificity could make the Obama/Bolden implementation very different from the congressional intent.

I personally expect that the NASA rollercoaster ride will continue through the next presidential election.  ::)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 04:36 PM
I'm also guessing that odds are less than 50% that the SDHLV would end up surviving development to the point that it'd actually be able to take business away from commercial launchers. There's wasted money there...

That's one of the things that makes me nervous. Without a defined mission or some concrete plan, what's to prevent this HLV from being competition for the EELV's? Von Braun defined Heavy Lift as 100mt to LEO, but once we left the Saturn-V era, people began calling heavy lift anything they wanted to, or even whatever they were able to lift, even now referring to the advanced Delta-IV and Atlas-V as "heavy lift" when they certainly are not. Without a definition or a mission, what's to prevent them from defining heavy lift right smack in the middle of the Advanced EELV range, thus actually taking business away from the EELV's, which are already underutilized? I want a heavy lift to have it's bottom end be no less than the max capability of the EELV's so there's no danger of competing with them. It needs to complement the EELV family, not compete with it. Commercial access to LEO is the future, and while I favor the HLV very much, whatever we do now must not make it hard for the commercial companies to make that leap. We need them to eventually *BE* the route to LEO.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 04:37 PM
Any news about the press conference?
Haven't seen any -- if anyone does find a link, hopefully they'll share that here.  Video may come out on C-SPAN later today after the floor sessions adjourn.  (While significant here, today's action is far from the biggest thing on the Hill today.)  There will likely be reports online from different news organizations with Washington staff before that.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MrTim on 07/15/2010 04:41 PM
(snip)
I maintain that NASA would be better off if LC-40 went away and they were forced to focus only on payloads and missions instead of launch vehicles.
Did you mean LC39?

NASA critics occasionally fantasize that LC39 could be abandoned and that this would be of some benefit to NASA but I believe this is an error. If I recall correctly, the VAB, the firing rooms and the two hardstands have all been put on the register of national historic sites that must be maintained for posterity. As such, NASA would be required to keep them up even if they went unused. The best thing for the taxpayer is to maintain and use them. I personally think the honest thing is to move their costs into the core NASA budget (since they'll exists no matter what) and stop hanging their costs on whatever systems fly from LC-39 (which only continues to perpetuate the illusion that the costs would go away if whatever system uses them is retired).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/15/2010 04:43 PM

Did you mean LC39?

 the VAB, the firing rooms and the two hardstands have all been put on the register of national historic sites that must be maintained for posterity. As such, NASA would be required to keep them up even if they went unused.


Not true.  There is no requirement for NASA to maintain them indefinitely.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/15/2010 04:48 PM
personally think the honest thing is to move their costs into the core NASA budget (since they'll exists no matter what) and stop hanging their costs on whatever systems fly from LC-39 (which only continues to perpetuate the illusion that the costs would go away if whatever system uses them is retired).


No such thing as NASA core budget.  Every program has to pay for the resources that it uses, that is only thing that makes sense.  No point in funding unused or overly expensive facilities.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MrTim on 07/15/2010 04:54 PM
That's one of the things that makes me nervous. Without a defined mission or some concrete plan, what's to prevent this HLV from being competition for the EELV's? Von Braun defined Heavy Lift as 100mt to LEO, but once we left the Saturn-V era, people began calling heavy lift anything they wanted to, or even whatever they were able to lift, even now referring to the advanced Delta-IV and Atlas-V as "heavy lift" when they certainly are not. Without a definition or a mission, what's to prevent them from defining heavy lift right smack in the middle of the Advanced EELV range, thus actually taking business away from the EELV's, which are already underutilized? I want a heavy lift to have it's bottom end be no less than the max capability of the EELV's so there's no danger of competing with them. It needs to complement the EELV family, not compete with it. Commercial access to LEO is the future, and while I favor the HLV very much, whatever we do now must not make it hard for the commercial companies to make that leap. We need them to eventually *BE* the route to LEO.
I suspect that the senators intend to get the HLV built so it is available for future presidents to re-commit to the Moon and Mars; The development schedule will outlast Obama's desire to lower the HSF goals. A future president will be able to grab that massive rocket and aim it at whatever goal he/she wants. At this point, I think we all need to hope for and support the biggest HLV we can get, both for the reasons you cite, and also because it appears that HLV is what congress insists on building. If this bill makes it all the way through to a presidential signature, then let's all hope for something that barely fits out the VAB doors  ;D

If we must go big, then let us at least get something with a voluminous fairing and a low price per pound...

I'd prefer a 2nd gen shuttle system, but I recognize that my preference will not happen and I do remember the Saturn V... if we get something at least as capable, it will be worthy of the nation, will dazzle the youth, and I will learn to be happy with it.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 04:54 PM
(snip)
I maintain that NASA would be better off if LC-40 went away and they were forced to focus only on payloads and missions instead of launch vehicles.
Did you mean LC39?

NASA critics occasionally fantasize that LC39 could be abandoned and that this would be of some benefit to NASA but I believe this is an error. If I recall correctly, the VAB, the firing rooms and the two hardstands have all been put on the register of national historic sites that must be maintained for posterity. As such, NASA would be required to keep them up even if they went unused. The best thing for the taxpayer is to maintain and use them. I personally think the honest thing is to move their costs into the core NASA budget (since they'll exists no matter what) and stop hanging their costs on whatever systems fly from LC-39 (which only continues to perpetuate the illusion that the costs would go away if whatever system uses them is retired).
Yes, I meant LC-39.

I am not a NASA critic. I love NASA. They're doing substantially more BEO exploration than anyone else right now:
Mars:
http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/home/
http://marsprogram.jpl.nasa.gov/mro/
http://marsprogram.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/

Saturn:
http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/

Ceres and Vesta:
http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov/

Interstellar space:
http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/

Just to give a few.

I love manned exploration, as well. I just don't see it progressing anywhere if we spend all of our manned space money designing and building a new launch vehicle every few years and maintaining an effectively NASA-only launch vehicle architecture. There are already suitable launch vehicles. Use them.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: padrat on 07/15/2010 04:54 PM
Nice to see that we'll at least get another mission. As long as i can make it through the oct chopping block.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/15/2010 04:56 PM
I'm also guessing that odds are less than 50% that the SDHLV would end up surviving development to the point that it'd actually be able to take business away from commercial launchers. There's wasted money there...

That's one of the things that makes me nervous. Without a defined mission or some concrete plan, what's to prevent this HLV from being competition for the EELV's? Von Braun defined Heavy Lift as 100mt to LEO, but once we left the Saturn-V era, people began calling heavy lift anything they wanted to, or even whatever they were able to lift, even now referring to the advanced Delta-IV and Atlas-V as "heavy lift" when they certainly are not. Without a definition or a mission, what's to prevent them from defining heavy lift right smack in the middle of the Advanced EELV range, thus actually taking business away from the EELV's, which are already underutilized? I want a heavy lift to have it's bottom end be no less than the max capability of the EELV's so there's no danger of competing with them. It needs to complement the EELV family, not compete with it. Commercial access to LEO is the future, and while I favor the HLV very much, whatever we do now must not make it hard for the commercial companies to make that leap. We need them to eventually *BE* the route to LEO.

There are no payloads for the heaviest variants of EELVs anyway, so don't worry about any competition. If an HLV gets build (very theoretical), it will be a nice to have tool that won't be used because the money for payloads just isn't there. It might then be misued to service the station, until some future Congress says it has way to high operations costs (if it isn't already canceled in development) and cancels it due to lack of funding and lack of a mission leaving us right were we started.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/15/2010 04:57 PM
a low price per pound...


Not going to happen with an SDLV
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: phantomdj on 07/15/2010 05:06 PM
Nice to see that we'll at least get another mission. As long as i can make it through the oct chopping block.

That is a major problem for a lot of people regardless of this bill passing.

The people that build and test the FWD and AFT skirt electronics and hydraulics for the SRB’s will have all the assembly and test work done by the end of September.  This includes STS-135.  So the SRB folks, with the knowledge and skills to assemble and test the SRB’s, will not be around when the SD-HLV needs them in about 2 years.

Does NASA or USA believe they can hire them back then?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MrTim on 07/15/2010 05:09 PM
No such thing as NASA core budget.  Every program has to pay for the resources that it uses, that is only thing that makes sense.  No point in funding unused or overly expensive facilities.
Jim, you excel at ignoring context and details of posts...

I said that I was posting a recollection about the historic site designations. If you have information that these were never so designated or have been stricken from the lists than you may say that my recollections are incorrect... but you can under no circumstances get inside my head and announce that I do not recall these things.

As for my sloppy reference to a "core budget", They obviously have no budget item called "core budget" and I assumed most here were smart enough to know that  ::) I was not intending to be so specific as to designate some particular line in some portion of NASA's budget. I was making a general point I trusted the readers to get without a multi-page discourse about the intricate details of federal agency budgets. My point: If the taxpayer is paying for the facilities anyway, then it is not really fair to hang the accounting for that on a particular launch vehicle (though I can see why somebody who lives in the EELV world would like every NASA-owned system to be falsely saddled with that expense and made to look artificially expensive)  ;)

Try to focus more on shooting down actual technical errors about systems with hard numbers, and not opinions or general ideas which are obviously not being made with precision.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: ugordan on 07/15/2010 05:13 PM
Money to skilled workers who have run shuttle vs rich stockholders with portfolios at commercial companies is always going to get my vote.

So commercial aerospace companies do not have skilled workers ?

I'm very much interested in hearing the answer to that myself.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 05:15 PM
Is there any news on the actual budget numbers? Any updated draft, yet?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 05:25 PM
Here is Senator Hutchison's statement:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=7457bd6b-1721-4c17-994c-77595f3099ae&Statement_id=7ceb6eb1-6902-49d0-b9be-934420b484b8&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=7&YearDisplay=2010

Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/15/2010 05:46 PM
Updated draft here:
  http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=50faad79-f79d-4531-9f69-cf646b2b96ba
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 05:48 PM
Updated draft here:
  http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=50faad79-f79d-4531-9f69-cf646b2b96ba
Thanks!

EDIT: There are no fiscal numbers in the document you linked to. :(
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/15/2010 05:50 PM
Updated draft here:
  http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=50faad79-f79d-4531-9f69-cf646b2b96ba

Thanks for the link.  That seems to be just an eight page summary, though, not the actual text of the bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/15/2010 05:57 PM
Updated draft here:
  http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=50faad79-f79d-4531-9f69-cf646b2b96ba
Thanks!
EDIT: There are no fiscal numbers in the document you linked to. :(

Nope, no numbers. That doesn't appear to be public yet.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 06:01 PM
It's also a summary of the bill but not the actual bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/15/2010 06:03 PM
Quote from: simonth

There are no payloads for the heaviest variants of EELVs anyway, so don't worry about any competition. If an HLV gets build (very theoretical), it will be a nice to have tool that won't be used because the money for payloads just isn't there. It might then be misued to service the station, until some future Congress says it has way to high operations costs (if it isn't already canceled in development) and cancels it due to lack of funding and lack of a mission leaving us right were we started.

Which is, of course, exactly what will happen.

Today, they told me: "Cheer up, things could be worse!"
So I cheered up, and what do you know, things became worse...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DigitalMan on 07/15/2010 06:04 PM
Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

According to Nelson's statement, this advances things from 2025 to 2016.  The 2025 date was for a full-on mission to an asteroid, unless he is stating the 2016 date is for a full-on mission to an asteroid, this comparsion is not the same.  I hope someone can get some attention to this and get clarification for the record.

If it is not for a full-on mission then I would point out that the previous plan was to start BEO manned launches in 2020 in prep for the 2025 mission.  Either Nelson has to revise his comparison to 2020 or state in clear terms that 2016 is for a real mission.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 06:09 PM
Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

According to Nelson's statement, this advances things from 2025 to 2016.  The 2025 date was for a full-on mission to an asteroid, unless he is stating the 2016 date is for a full-on mission to an asteroid, this comparsion is not the same.  I hope someone can get some attention to this and get clarification for the record.

If it is not for a full-on mission then I would point out that the previous plan was to start BEO manned launches in 2020 in prep for the 2025 mission.  Either Nelson has to revise his comparison to 2020 or state in clear terms that 2016 is for a real mission.


I don't think he's talking about BEO for 2016 (it's the date for Orion LEO capability), which makes it a very strange comparison:
http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&
Quote
The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation today passed a bipartisan spending plan for NASA that extends the space shuttle program well into next year and advances the date for future human flight in a newly developed spacecraft to 2016 from a 2025 target-date initially proposed by the administration.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 06:09 PM
Here is Senator Hutchison's statement:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=7457bd6b-1721-4c17-994c-77595f3099ae&Statement_id=7ceb6eb1-6902-49d0-b9be-934420b484b8&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=7&YearDisplay=2010

Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

I don't think anybody posted it yet, but here's Chairman Rockefeller's opening statement and summary of "key elements" of the bill:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=4ae69fe8-581d-4d10-85b0-5b15643680b9
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/15/2010 06:12 PM
2-The shuttle won't be extended past 2011 now other than a single extra mission, so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup. 

So apparently the gap, and the inability to support the ISS without shuttle, and the lack of a firm plan weren't so much issues as not having a big rocket to feel good about?

I believe the bill requires NASA to quickly produce an up-to-date report of ISS's up-mass requirements, and available spares. It also requires the Shuttle infrastructure to be retained to enable Congress to request a further flight (or flights?), presumably based on that report.

However, yes, STS-135 is the only gap reduction measure without this.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 06:14 PM
1-There's still no plan or details, or nearer-term destinations.  This is building an HLV without a mission. 

It's better than that. The bill (if you read it) includes a provision for a National Academies study in what to do with manned spaceflight 2014-2023. This is the same as what all the unmanned programs do, and allows a concrete set of goals to be laid down with a politician dictating priorities...

So you're saying that all the unmanned programs decide on committing a lions share of their budgets to developing new systems, including a commitment to tie up a significant chunk of their future budgets on maintaining the yearly fixed costs for those systems, before they even figure out what they're going to do with said systems?  Pardon my ignorance of unmanned systems, but I kind of thought that they solicited feedback from PIs on destinations and let them pick how they want to handle the transport...If you could enlighten me though I'd be intrigued.

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Orbiter on 07/15/2010 06:17 PM
Has chances for STS-135 increased with this?

Orbiter
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 06:17 PM
I don't know why your so angry. They put SDHLV in. Ok? Thats, as we agreed previously, loads better than fy2011 or por. Its a heck of a big step and you can't expect them to do everything all at once. Just doing that  is its own miracle.

Its far from perfect but given the situation id say its "ideal" .

I guess my frustration is that the section of NASA that has historically proven to be the worst return on investment is the one getting the lion's share of the budget again.  I am glad that it isn't a total loss, and that at least some money will be available for stuff I think will actually provide any value to the country (unlike SDHLV).  I just can't get too jazzed up about a rocket to nowhere that at best will be sucking the air out of the room for the next several decades, diverting money to provide it with missions.

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 06:18 PM
Should note we shouldn't forget that STS-136 is now in the mix. At a very early stage and one step at a time, but certainly in the mix.

Will work on that.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jorge on 07/15/2010 06:20 PM
Has chances for STS-135 increased with this?

Orbiter

Section 503 of the bill directs NASA to fly it provided it can be done safely.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jorge on 07/15/2010 06:22 PM
One more note, on the Warner amendment. There's a major disconnect with regard to how it handles the multi-purpose crew vehicle (MPCV). The amendment mandates a re-compete rather than re-using Orion, but neglects to reinstate the "Constellation Transition" line item that carried the termination costs of the Orion contract. That's a several-hundred-million dollar hole that the amendment ignores.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 06:22 PM
... so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup.

In addition to the ESA & JAXA modules, both EELV's have the capability to provide material support to ISS, at least excepting "the last mile". But that is solvable. 

I guess here's my question.  One of OV's and 51D's chief complaints about FY11 was that it left the station in the lurch.  This does almost *nothing* to change the situation (other than a single token extra shuttle flight), but now they're happy.  Why was "relying on commercial crew" then so unacceptable, but now, when the government doesn't really have any better backup options than before, it's now acceptable?  If they honestly were so worried about the fate of ISS before, I don't see how this new budget actually alleviates any of those concerns.  Which makes me doubt the sincerity of their concerns, even though I have a lot of respect for them as individuals.

Quote
It's the lack of a firm plan for the HLV that makes me nervous. What's it going to be used for? There are great possibilities, both good and bad, and without a plan or mission, it's too easy for extrordinary waste to set in at the cost of other more worthy efforts. I want the HLV, I really, really do, but I want it knowing how it's supposed to be used.

Bingo.  They're doing the same thing they accused FY11 of, just swap out "flagship technologies" for HLV/BEO spacecraft development. 

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 06:22 PM
Should note we shouldn't forget that STS-136 is now in the mix. At a very early stage and one step at a time, but certainly in the mix.

Will work on that.

Don't you mean STS-336 as I don't think that the work on the ET-94 is meant to be anything other than a LON or a test flight for a SD-HLV.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 06:28 PM
As long as decent funding levels for commercial crew and cargo are maintained, all hope is not lost. They are the true future of American HSF. In LEO and beyond.

As much as I've whined this morning, reality is reality.  If this bill passes, we'll just have to take what we've got and do our part to maximize the actual utility the country gets out of this porkfest.

Quote
I agree with Jon - I just don't see the benefit of pushing ahead with a SDHLV, when there are no funds for actual payloads. We'll be stuck with a HLV that only launches once or twice per year, at enormous cost. BEO exploration will not become economical this way.

It's far worse than that.  They'll "find" payloads for their HLV.  Even if it means forcing stuff that doesn't need an HLV into being developed so only the HLV can lift it.  It's just like what happened with the Shuttle during the early days and with ISS.  The good news for MSFC and JSC is that if they can suck more and more projects into "needing" an HLV, they'll just happen to be the centers that would "have to" do the development. 

The hope is that the money they left over for commercial crew and technology can be better spent now that it's no longer being used to try and replace the HSF "baby rattle". 

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: phantomdj on 07/15/2010 06:29 PM

I’m going to say this again

The people that build and test the FWD and AFT skirt electronics and hydraulics for the SRB’s will have all the assembly and test work done by the end of September and a majority of them will be laid-off.  This includes STS-135.  So the SRB folks, with the knowledge and skills to assemble and test the SRB’s that will be needed for a SD-HLV or a possible STS-336, will not be around when the SD-HLV needs them in about 2 years.

Does Congress, NASA or USA believe they can hire them back on a year or two?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 06:30 PM
These remarks sound like they came from the press conference:
http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2010/07/hutchison-champions-new-nasa-p.html

Also, something else to look for, as noted in the story:

Quote
Nelson said he expected the White House to put out a statement supporting the bill later today.

Although it's also important to remember that HR 4173 (Wall Street reform) will continue to dominate the discussion on the Hill; that Senate vote is occurring right now on the floor.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 06:33 PM
The press conference for the Senate 2010 NASA Authorization Bill has now been posted, here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBfXy1LulP0
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 06:34 PM
Should note we shouldn't forget that STS-136 is now in the mix. At a very early stage and one step at a time, but certainly in the mix.

Will work on that.

Don't you mean STS-336 as I don't think that the work on the ET-94 is meant to be anything other than a LON or a test flight for a SD-HLV.

No, I mean STS-136. I'm informed there is an aim to convert to a mission, in the style of STS-135 (four person crew).

IF ET-94, it would take a hit on upmass, but when comparing to other vehicles, it's still a huge upmass bonus (along with options).

ET-139 becomes part of the mix, depending on how far they can stretch.

Again, long way off on that, but not something to be dismissed.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 06:35 PM
The press conference has now been posted, here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBfXy1LulP0
Cool, thanks -- looks like it's courtesy of Senator Hutchison.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/15/2010 06:35 PM

1.  I said that I was posting a recollection about the historic site designations. If you have information that these were never so designated or have been stricken from the lists than you may say that my recollections are incorrect... but you can under no circumstances get inside my head and announce that I do not recall these things.

2.  As for my sloppy reference to a "core budget", They obviously have no budget item called "core budget" and I assumed most here were smart enough to know that  ::) I was not intending to be so specific as to designate some particular line in some portion of NASA's budget. I was making a general point I trusted the readers to get without a multi-page discourse about the intricate details of federal agency budgets.

3.  My point: If the taxpayer is paying for the facilities anyway, then it is not really fair to hang the accounting for that on a particular launch vehicle (though I can see why somebody who lives in the EELV world would like every NASA-owned system to be falsely saddled with that expense and made to look artificially expensive)  ;)

4.Try to focus more on shooting down actual technical errors about systems with hard numbers, and not opinions or general ideas which are obviously not being made with precision.


1.  See the Mercury Control Center.   

2.  And NASA uses total cost accounting.  It is fair and standard practice in the real world and not just NASA.  Projects must account for and maintain the assets they use.  Using taxpayer money has nothing to do with it

3.    Wrong.  I live in the real world and it has nothing to do with EELV.   The user of a facility must fund it out of its budget and be saddled with it.  This applies to all facilities and not just LC-39.  The shuttle no longer needed the VPF, it was torn down.   Maintenance of LC-39 needs to be added to any vehicle that use it because it would correctly show the true costs.  Your point that it "made to look artificially expensive" is lucricous.  Only HSF pork supporter would saddle the rest of NASA with LC-39 costs.   

4.  See #2.  Shot down with hard facts.  Try to use real world data vs HSF pork policies. 

Your point is just plain inane.  If LC-39 costs too much, then it needs to go away.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/15/2010 06:40 PM
The bill (if you read it) includes a provision for a National Academies study in what to do with manned spaceflight 2014-2023. This is the same as what all the unmanned programs do, and allows a concrete set of goals to be laid down with a politician dictating priorities...

So you're saying that all the unmanned programs decide on committing a lions share of their budgets to developing new systems, including a commitment to tie up a significant chunk of their future budgets on maintaining the yearly fixed costs for those systems, before they even figure out what they're going to do with said systems?  Pardon my ignorance of unmanned systems, but I kind of thought that they solicited feedback from PIs on destinations and let them pick how they want to handle the transport...If you could enlighten me though I'd be intrigued.

Not quite answering your question, but I believe the unmanned programmes start with "these are the launchers at our disposal".

It looks like HSF is being put into the same position by this order of events - the new missions will work around the available launchers. However, it's not like we haven't already put a lot of thought put into what could be achieved with these sized launchers.

I guess the paradigm here is "assembled from 75mT chunks" (or more with a big u/s). The world mostly seems to divide into "it'll be easier with an HLV" and "we can do it with 25mT chunks". I don't think this will put a big constraint on what the study could recommend in terms of missions, or how to achieve them.

But I do understand your frustration.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/15/2010 06:41 PM
Why was "relying on commercial crew" then so unacceptable, but now, when the government doesn't really have any better backup options than before, it's now acceptable?  If they honestly were so worried about the fate of ISS before, I don't see how this new budget actually alleviates any of those concerns.  Which makes me doubt the sincerity of their concerns, even though I have a lot of respect for them as individuals.

Quote
It's the lack of a firm plan for the HLV that makes me nervous. What's it going to be used for? There are great possibilities, both good and bad, and without a plan or mission, it's too easy for extrordinary waste to set in at the cost of other more worthy efforts. I want the HLV, I really, really do, but I want it knowing how it's supposed to be used.

Bingo.  They're doing the same thing they accused FY11 of, just swap out "flagship technologies" for HLV/BEO spacecraft development. 

~Jon
My issues to a "T".

I thought much of the drabble about FY2011 was insincere as well.

The reason no one sets goals/timelines is that it is too effective ... limits their agendas. Hearing certain people on this board put down others "with agendas" - when they are clearly demonstrating bias.  Lost a lot of value for this forum with that.

Either way not defining things here is a very bad sign.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 06:41 PM
Should note we shouldn't forget that STS-136 is now in the mix. At a very early stage and one step at a time, but certainly in the mix.

Will work on that.

Don't you mean STS-336 as I don't think that the work on the ET-94 is meant to be anything other than a LON or a test flight for a SD-HLV.

No, I mean STS-136. I'm informed there is an aim to convert to a mission, in the style of STS-135 (four person crew).

IF ET-94, it would take a hit on upmass, but when comparing to other vehicles, it's still a huge upmass bonus (along with options).

ET-139 becomes part of the mix, depending on how far they can stretch.

Again, long way off on that, but not something to be dismissed.

Great!

I imagine that it would have to be flown late in FY2011.  Will be looking forward to reading your article or post on it.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: 2552 on 07/15/2010 06:47 PM
Here is Senator Hutchison's statement:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=7457bd6b-1721-4c17-994c-77595f3099ae&Statement_id=7ceb6eb1-6902-49d0-b9be-934420b484b8&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=7&YearDisplay=2010

Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

I don't think anybody posted it yet, but here's Chairman Rockefeller's opening statement and summary of "key elements" of the bill:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=4ae69fe8-581d-4d10-85b0-5b15643680b9

The summary says:
Quote from: 2010NASA.pdf
Sec. 302 - Space Launch System as Follow-on Launch Vehicle to the Space Shuttle – NASA will
initiate development of a Government-owned and NASA-managed “Space Launch System”

But the draft bill in both the SLS and MPCV sections contains this language:
Quote from: NASA Rockefeller1.pdf
The capacity for efficient and timely evolution, including the incorporation of new technologies, competition of sub-elements, and commercial operations.

So how does this work? What does "commercial operations" mean here?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 06:49 PM
My guess is that it means that the HLV can be used by non-NASA clients (if there is any).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/15/2010 06:49 PM
... so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup.

In addition to the ESA & JAXA modules, both EELV's have the capability to provide material support to ISS, at least excepting "the last mile". But that is solvable. 

I guess here's my question.  One of OV's and 51D's chief complaints about FY11 was that it left the station in the lurch.  This does almost *nothing* to change the situation (other than a single token extra shuttle flight), but now they're happy.  Why was "relying on commercial crew" then so unacceptable, but now, when the government doesn't really have any better backup options than before, it's now acceptable?  If they honestly were so worried about the fate of ISS before, I don't see how this new budget actually alleviates any of those concerns.  Which makes me doubt the sincerity of their concerns, even though I have a lot of respect for them as individuals.

Quote
It's the lack of a firm plan for the HLV that makes me nervous. What's it going to be used for? There are great possibilities, both good and bad, and without a plan or mission, it's too easy for extrordinary waste to set in at the cost of other more worthy efforts. I want the HLV, I really, really do, but I want it knowing how it's supposed to be used.

Bingo.  They're doing the same thing they accused FY11 of, just swap out "flagship technologies" for HLV/BEO spacecraft development. 

~Jon

If the SRB/SSME/ET base is now being maintained for SD-HLV then that leaves the opportunity for one Orbiter to be left on LON standby while it's being developed. There is going to be a study to see if more than STS-135 is required so there maybe more than one extra mission anyway.

We had a plan with missions already designed, going back to the Moon. The President now wants Flexible Path, well Congress is giving him the tool to do it early so he and Bolden can come up with the exact plan.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 06:56 PM
The press conference has now been posted, here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBfXy1LulP0
Cool, thanks -- looks like it's courtesy of Senator Hutchison.
FYI, the Q&A starts at about the 17-minute mark.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: CessnaDriver on 07/15/2010 06:56 PM
Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

According to Nelson's statement, this advances things from 2025 to 2016.  The 2025 date was for a full-on mission to an asteroid, unless he is stating the 2016 date is for a full-on mission to an asteroid, this comparsion is not the same.  I hope someone can get some attention to this and get clarification for the record.

If it is not for a full-on mission then I would point out that the previous plan was to start BEO manned launches in 2020 in prep for the 2025 mission.  Either Nelson has to revise his comparison to 2020 or state in clear terms that 2016 is for a real mission.


I don't think he's talking about BEO for 2016 (it's the date for Orion LEO capability), which makes it a very strange comparison:
http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&
Quote
The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation today passed a bipartisan spending plan for NASA that extends the space shuttle program well into next year and advances the date for future human flight in a newly developed spacecraft to 2016 from a 2025 target-date initially proposed by the administration.



What about a BEO mission to lunar orbit?

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/15/2010 06:56 PM
... so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup.

In addition to the ESA & JAXA modules, both EELV's have the capability to provide material support to ISS, at least excepting "the last mile". But that is solvable. 

I guess here's my question.  One of OV's and 51D's chief complaints about FY11 was that it left the station in the lurch.  This does almost *nothing* to change the situation (other than a single token extra shuttle flight), but now they're happy.  Why was "relying on commercial crew" then so unacceptable, but now, when the government doesn't really have any better backup options than before, it's now acceptable?  If they honestly were so worried about the fate of ISS before, I don't see how this new budget actually alleviates any of those concerns.  Which makes me doubt the sincerity of their concerns, even though I have a lot of respect for them as individuals.

Quote
It's the lack of a firm plan for the HLV that makes me nervous. What's it going to be used for? There are great possibilities, both good and bad, and without a plan or mission, it's too easy for extrordinary waste to set in at the cost of other more worthy efforts. I want the HLV, I really, really do, but I want it knowing how it's supposed to be used.

Bingo.  They're doing the same thing they accused FY11 of, just swap out "flagship technologies" for HLV/BEO spacecraft development. 

~Jon

Thank you for speaking to my emotional state Jon.

This is a compromise, meaning you give and you take.

In a perfect world, obviously I believe we should fly shuttle until a replacement is online, proven and readily available, both cargo and crew.  That is, as much as I dislike it, unlikely.

That said, the addition of STS-135 does give something.  There is a possibility of using ET-94 for STS-136.  A SDLV also places certain possibilities in the mix in order to protect ISS in the immediate term.

Commercial crew is funded, yet it provides for answers first to key questions that absolutely must be answered in order for it to be the most effective it can be.  COTS and CRS still gets its funds. 

Orion appears to be restored to what it was meant to be, and provides a payload for the SLS.  Orion will not be a LEO-only vehicle, a CRV or anything like that unless absolutely necessary.  It gives the CRV role to "commercial", where it should be if the plan is to turn LEO over to "commercial". 

It provides funds for R&D to develop certain technologies that will be required.  Not all at once, but enough that the money can be focused on near term results and what is needed in the near-term.

I believe it restores balance to operations and development. 

Will it be difficult still?  Yes, in a variety of ways.  As I have said in the past, I am willing to work with everyone, because in this industry, we really are all in this together.  The question remains if certain others feel that way. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/15/2010 06:58 PM
The summary says:
Quote from: 2010NASA.pdf
Sec. 302 - Space Launch System as Follow-on Launch Vehicle to the Space Shuttle – NASA will
initiate development of a Government-owned and NASA-managed “Space Launch System”

But the draft bill in both the SLS and MPCV sections contains this language:
Quote from: NASA Rockefeller1.pdf
The capacity for efficient and timely evolution, including the incorporation of new technologies, competition of sub-elements, and commercial operations.

So how does this work? What does "commercial operations" mean here?

The Rockefeller doc also says "governement-owned civil launch system developed, managed, and operated by NASA" (p10). It's not a difference in intent between the documents.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mikegi on 07/15/2010 07:08 PM
I guess my frustration is that the section of NASA that has historically proven to be the worst return on investment is the one getting the lion's share of the budget again...
I agree. Ridiculous. Anyway, I guess astronauts heading to the ISS in this SDHLV in the future will be able to say something like, "you're sitting on top of the most complex machine ever built by man, with a million separate components, all supplied by the highest bidder".

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 07:09 PM
Senator Shelby's statement:
http://shelby.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=PressRoom.NewsReleases&ContentRecord_id=d7091b9a-802a-23ad-411f-3fd40e393e73
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/15/2010 07:10 PM
I guess my frustration is that the section of NASA that has historically proven to be the worst return on investment is the one getting the lion's share of the budget again...
I agree. Ridiculous. Anyway, I guess astronauts heading to the ISS in this SDHLV in the future will be able to say something like, "you're sitting on top of the most complex machine ever built by man, with a million separate components, all supplied by the highest bidder".

Make that the only bidder... for both the launcher and the spacecraft!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/15/2010 07:10 PM
It may not be perfect, but at least now we have a plan that makes some sense! I view this as very good news.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: si39 on 07/15/2010 07:10 PM
I believe this question was asked previously:  What is the next step?

As I understand it - there is to be no FY2011 Federal Budget - just continuing resolutions.  Is today's hearing part of the budget process or is it something else?

What is your best guess of what will happen - will the committee's desires be met or will the Obama administration block it?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/15/2010 07:12 PM
It may not be perfect, but at least now we have a plan that makes some sense! I view this as very good news.

Does it really make sense. They stripped away the R&D (once again) and kept the funding in the launcher and spacecraft area which won't be competed (once again) and canceled the overall mission (once again). It is a compromise that doesn't achieve either the original intent of the WH (heavy R&D spending in preparation of future exploration) nor the original Cx intent (missions).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/15/2010 07:14 PM
What is your best guess of what will happen - will the committee's desires be met or will Obama administration block?

Nelson said in the press conference that the WH supports the bipartisan bill. That would mean it likely gets implemented with some further mods.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 07:17 PM
I believe this question was asked previously:  What is the next step?

As I understand it - there is to be no FY2011 Federal Budget - just continuing resolutions.  Is today's hearing part of the budget process or is it something else?

What is your best guess of what will happen - will the committee's desires be met or will Obama administration block?

According to Senator Nelson, the President will issue a statement supporting the bill. IMO this means that the general principles of the legislation will remain the same (e.g. SD-HLV, a BEO capsule and commercial crew). However, the numbers are still subject to some change. But we are waiting for 51D Mascot's comments for more on all of this.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: phantomdj on 07/15/2010 07:19 PM
This is absolutely criminal – Kongress thinks we are down here frying chickens…

Sec. 305 – NASA Launch Support and Infrastructure Modernization Program - In preparation for the Space Launch System, NASA shall upgrade KFC infrastructure in preparation for the Space Launch System through streamlining and minimizing of vehicle processing complexity. Elements will include civil and national security operations, providing multi-vehicle support, etc. Requires report on modernization plan within 120 days

“Finger lickin’ good” program.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 07:23 PM
This is absolutely criminal – Kongress thinks we are down here frying chickens…

Sec. 305 – NASA Launch Support and Infrastructure Modernization Program - In preparation for the Space Launch System, NASA shall upgrade KFC infrastructure in preparation for the Space Launch System through streamlining and minimizing of vehicle processing complexity. Elements will include civil and national security operations, providing multi-vehicle support, etc. Requires report on modernization plan within 120 days

“Finger lickin’ good” program.

LOL
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Ben the Space Brit on 07/15/2010 07:25 PM
This is absolutely criminal – Kongress thinks we are down here frying chickens…

Sec. 305 – NASA Launch Support and Infrastructure Modernization Program - In preparation for the Space Launch System, NASA shall upgrade KFC infrastructure in preparation for the Space Launch System through streamlining and minimizing of vehicle processing complexity. Elements will include civil and national security operations, providing multi-vehicle support, etc. Requires report on modernization plan within 120 days

“Finger lickin’ good” program.

LOL


Hungry Congressional staffer typing up bill = Freudian slip.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kch on 07/15/2010 07:26 PM
This is absolutely criminal – Kongress thinks we are down here frying chickens…

Sec. 305 – NASA Launch Support and Infrastructure Modernization Program - In preparation for the Space Launch System, NASA shall upgrade KFC infrastructure in preparation for the Space Launch System through streamlining and minimizing of vehicle processing complexity. Elements will include civil and national security operations, providing multi-vehicle support, etc. Requires report on modernization plan within 120 days

“Finger lickin’ good” program.


"Fry Me To The Moon"?  ;)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/15/2010 07:36 PM
This is absolutely criminal – Kongress thinks we are down here frying chickens…

Sec. 305 – NASA Launch Support and Infrastructure Modernization Program - In preparation for the Space Launch System, NASA shall upgrade KFC infrastructure in preparation for the Space Launch System through streamlining and minimizing of vehicle processing complexity. Elements will include civil and national security operations, providing multi-vehicle support, etc. Requires report on modernization plan within 120 days

“Finger lickin’ good” program.

LOL


Hungry Congressional staffer typing up bill = Freudian slip.

There real horrible part is, those documents are proofread by several different people. I guess they were all hungry then...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/15/2010 07:40 PM
Hahaha, someone should tell 51D about this. Someone might be left wondering "which center is KFC?"
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 07:51 PM
Just noticed that Nelson said in the press conference that the "deadline" for the SLS first flight is in 2016. The JSC HLV document implies that inline can't do that in the constrained budget. Thus sidemount seems to be coming out the more likely...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Orbiter on 07/15/2010 07:54 PM
I'm still confused.. STS-135 isn't officially added is it?

Orbiter
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/15/2010 07:55 PM
Just noticed that Nelson said in the press conference that the "deadline" for the SLS first flight is in 2016. The JSC HLV document implies that inline can't do that in the constrained budget. Thus sidemount seems to be coming out the more likely...

I'm sorry, where does it say that in the document?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/15/2010 07:58 PM
Just noticed that Nelson said in the press conference that the "deadline" for the SLS first flight is in 2016. The JSC HLV document implies that inline can't do that in the constrained budget. Thus sidemount seems to be coming out the more likely...

However, sidemount won't scale to 150mt To LEO. Unless that language got deleted, there may be more money in the offing. Perhaps that's why the bill isn't available yet.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 07:58 PM
Here is Senator Hutchison's statement:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=7457bd6b-1721-4c17-994c-77595f3099ae&Statement_id=7ceb6eb1-6902-49d0-b9be-934420b484b8&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=7&YearDisplay=2010

Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

I don't think anybody posted it yet, but here's Chairman Rockefeller's opening statement and summary of "key elements" of the bill:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=4ae69fe8-581d-4d10-85b0-5b15643680b9

According to Nelson's statement, $1.6B will be going to commercial crew development. So it's a bit more than in the July 13th proposed bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 08:01 PM
Just noticed that Nelson said in the press conference that the "deadline" for the SLS first flight is in 2016. The JSC HLV document implies that inline can't do that in the constrained budget. Thus sidemount seems to be coming out the more likely...

However, sidemount won't scale to 150mt To LEO. Unless that language got deleted, there may be more money in the offing. Perhaps that's why the bill isn't available yet.

The bill came out of the committee this morning. They shouldn't be working on it at this point (except for printing purposes). 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: CessnaDriver on 07/15/2010 08:04 PM
It may not be perfect, but at least now we have a plan that makes some sense! I view this as very good news.


Agreed given the circumstance.

Much still remains though, I am wary even though people are saying Obama will sign off on this more or less.

Not to mention next year, the year after that and after that, etc.

Like a tag line from a sci fi movie, the battle for the future has just begun.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 08:07 PM
Senator Shelby's statement:
http://shelby.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=PressRoom.NewsReleases&ContentRecord_id=d7091b9a-802a-23ad-411f-3fd40e393e73

It's not often that I concur with Shelby, but this statement is spot on and important to note:
Quote
While this authorization bill is a good first step in the legislative process, it is important to note that the Appropriations Committee will determine the ultimate outcome.

It'll be important to watch if Shelby, using his position on the Appropriations Committee, plays any funding games again, like last year when he had CCDev funding cut from $150m to $50m.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: bad_astra on 07/15/2010 08:07 PM
Just noticed that Nelson said in the press conference that the "deadline" for the SLS first flight is in 2016. The JSC HLV document implies that inline can't do that in the constrained budget. Thus sidemount seems to be coming out the more likely...

Or the hybrid
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 08:09 PM
...

According to Nelson's statement, $1.6B will be going to commercial crew. So it's a bit more than in the July 13th proposed bill.
That's about $400 million more than the older draft of the Senate Committee bill, but still less than HALF the $3.3 billion proposed for the next 3 years under the White House's FY2011. The higher ($3.3b over 3 years) amount just about guarantees that more than one provider can be chosen.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/15/2010 08:10 PM
I'm still confused.. STS-135 isn't officially added is it?
This bill would authorize the flight, should it be enacted.  The language in the draft was in Section 503; noted the language in an earlier post:
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618575#msg618575
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 08:14 PM
However, sidemount won't scale to 150mt To LEO. Unless that language got deleted, there may be more money in the offing. Perhaps that's why the bill isn't available yet.

He said "to 130 tonnes" in the press conference, so maybe it did got modified.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 08:18 PM
It'll be important to watch if Shelby, using his position on the Appropriations Committee, plays any funding games again, like last year when he had CCDev funding cut from $150m to $50m.

Nelson and Hutchison several times emphasized that they wrote this in concert with Shelby and Mulkowski, and they don't expect much changes from Appropriations (or the White House, for that matter).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 08:19 PM
For the curious, I've tallied up the total spending on various items for FY2011-FY2013 (the only three years covered by the Senate draft bill):

Space Launch System: $7.15B (1.9+2.65+2.6)

Multi-purpose crew vehicle/Orion: $4B (1.3+1.3+1.4)

Mid/high-TRL exploration technology, heavy-lift, exploration architectures, and demonstrations: $975.9M (WH proposed $5.45B)

Robotic exploration precursor missions: 44+100+100= $244M (WH proposed $1.33B)

Low/mid-TRL space technology: 225+450+500= $1.175B (WH proposed $2.64B)

Commercial crew: 312+400+500= $1.2B (WH proposed $3.3B)

From the other thread, I've pasted the totals for various items in the earlier leaked draft bill and the WH proposals above. Below are relevant statements regarding funding figures in today's bill from Sens. Nelson and Shelby:

Nelson: "it bolsters commercial space ventures by allocating about $1.6 billion for development in the next three years." ($1.2B in earlier draft, $3.3B white house)

Shelby: "The legislation maintains $19 billion in total funding for NASA in fiscal year 2011, with modest growth in years thereafter." (same top-line as earlier draft and white house)

"Over 3 years, the legislation provides $7.15 billion for development of a new Space Launch System" (same as earlier draft)

"Over 3 years, the legislation provides $244 million for Robotic Precursor Missions. " (same as earlier draft, WH $1.33B)

"Over 3 years, the legislation provides over $2.1 billion for a combination of Exploration and Space Technology Development" (earlier draft had $2.15B, WH $8.09B)

Which makes me wonder... if the top-line is the same, and Space Launch System funding isn't being reduced, where is the money coming from for the reportedly amended increases in commercial crew and space technology relative to the earlier draft? (also note that Shelby's comment doesn't indicate an increase for exploration & space technology relative to the earlier draft)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/15/2010 08:22 PM
...

According to Nelson's statement, $1.6B will be going to commercial crew. So it's a bit more than in the July 13th proposed bill.
That's about $400 million more than the older draft of the Senate Committee bill, but still less than HALF the $3.3 billion proposed for the next 3 years under the White House's FY2011. The higher ($3.3b over 3 years) amount just about guarantees that more than one provider can be chosen.

Why?  You don't know that, again, becuase no one has known the public/private partnership dynamic.

Those of you screaming about "commercial" funding, don't see what you are complaining about is an oxymoron.  You want government money for a "commercial" development.

You demand all that money, or more of it, when none of you can even tell me what the funding arrangement is, but want and expect more.  This bill helps provide those answers first.

Besides, what was all that crowing about SpaceX and what they did for a certain price?  Doesn't that mean the 1.6 billion is more than enough?

Edit:  Typed the wrong number.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 08:22 PM
I'm sorry, where does it say that in the document?

If by that you mean the JSC document, page 175 of the PDF on L2 lists sidemount IOC as the middle of FY15, while the first Block I inline could be ready by early FY17 (with ET-94 demo flight at the end of FY15; page 178).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 08:28 PM
CSF are happy...........sorta.

Presser:

CSF Lauds Senators Warner, Boxer, Tom Udall, and Brownback for Support of Commercial Spaceflight
NASA Bill Provides Funding for Commercial Crew, But Falls Short of Expert Panel's Vision for Future


Washington, D.C., July 15, 2010 – Following today’s executive session of the Senate Commerce Committee, the President of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation, Bretton Alexander, stated, “Thanks to Senators Warner, Boxer, Udall, and Brownback, American industry won a victory today.  But this legislation must be improved so that we create more sustainable American jobs, instead of exporting jobs to Russia.  This compromise committee bill represents progress from the original draft, but there is still a long way to go to get to where the Augustine Committee said NASA needs to be.”

“We strongly supported Senator Warner’s proposed amendment to increase funding for, and remove needless restrictions on the development of, commercial crew and cargo.  We greatly appreciate all that Senator Warner did to promote commercial spaceflight and help the United States regain its human spaceflight capability quickly.”  Alexander added, “Senator Boxer’s leadership has also been pivotal in securing improvements to the bill.”

Alexander continued, “The Senate committee’s recognition that commercial systems, not government systems, will be the primary means of crew transportation to the International Space Station represents a milestone for our industry.  Instead of spending money to purchase seats on Russian launch vehicles, the commercial industry will create jobs and critical technological capabilities here in America through investment in commercial spaceflight.  I would also note that Senator Nelson has stated that he intends to fund commercial crew fully over the envisioned six-year timeframe for the program.  Moving forward, a firm Congressional commitment to commercial spaceflight will be critical to enable industry to accelerate its rate of hiring and job creation.”

Alexander also applauded Senator Tom Udall of New Mexico, saying, “The Senate Committee also adopted Senator Udall’s amendment specifying funding and support for NASA’s innovative Commercial Reusable Suborbital Research (CRuSR) Program, which will enable university students and researchers to fly science payloads aboard new low-cost commercial suborbital vehicles whose development is well underway.”

During this morning’s markup, Senators Boxer and Warner made several comments supportive of commercial spaceflight.  These quotes can be viewed in the Senate Commerce Committee webcast at 39:00 and 53:50 respectively, and verbatim versions are provided below for reference.


# # #


July 15 Markup: Webcast Quotes from Senators Boxer and Warner

Senator Boxer: “As we move to the floor, I’m going to be teaming up with some colleagues who would like to see a little more done on the commercial side, so we’ll all work together and maybe we can get that done.  We think this is a great area and we know the Committee worked hard to find that balance but we’d like to work a little more on that.” (39:00 into webcast)

Senator Warner: “I wanted to highlight two things as somebody who’s been a large advocate of commercial spaceflight, both from a cargo standpoint and ultimately from a manned standpoint.  I want to thank Senator Nelson and the work of the Chairman and others to make sure that the funding levels moved up from where the draft legislation was.  I know it’s been a challenging process, I know the Administration has been working with us and others as well who are advocates of commercial space, and I think there may be even more room to go, but I think this is a very important good faith-effort.”  (53:50 into webcast)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/15/2010 08:32 PM
I'm sorry, where does it say that in the document?

If by that you mean the JSC document, page 175 of the PDF on L2 lists sidemount IOC as the middle of FY15, while the first Block I inline could be ready by early FY17 (with ET-94 demo flight at the end of FY15; page 178).

thank you
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 08:33 PM
...

I'm a tax-payer, I have no horse in this race other than seeing the best return on investment for my money.

I have been a part of many bids for computer equipment for the government, and I can't tell you how many times "favored" companies were chosen which cost multiple times more for the same or less capability, sometimes in the name of a single feature "check-box" (ignoring the more important features not included) but usually for no real reason. There were other competitors with similar price-points and features and quality as our systems, but they weren't chosen either. This is just one more example of the government not making a decision based on price/performance.

Is the idea that there should be a decision based on price/performance so outrageous that I have to be characterized as demanding "all the money"? Besides, I don't work for the government, the government works for me (as a tax-payer), so it's partly my money! The money belongs to the tax-payers, not to the government workers or the government contractors. I'm allowed to have an opinion on how it's spent, and I don't have to be happy when I think it's not being spent wisely.

SpaceX is great, but there are many other contenders out there. If a robust commercial system is to exist, there needs to be more than one.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 08:35 PM
Those of you screaming about "commercial" funding, don't see what you are complaining about is an oxymoron.  You want government money for a "commercial" development.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/national_space_policy_6-28-10.pdf
Quote
The term “commercial,” for the purposes of this policy, refers to space goods, services, or activities provided by private sector enterprises that bear a reasonable portion of the investment risk and responsibility for the activity, operate in accordance with typical market-based incentives for controlling cost and optimizing return on investment, and have the legal capacity to offer these goods or services to existing or potential nongovernmental customers .
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 08:36 PM
I'm sorry, where does it say that in the document?

If by that you mean the JSC document, page 175 of the PDF on L2 lists sidemount IOC as the middle of FY15, while the first Block I inline could be ready by early FY17 (with ET-94 demo flight at the end of FY15; page 178).

thank you

I suspect that the decision between inline and sidemount is purposely left to NASA. Nelson specifically said that they did not want to get involved in the engineering aspects of it. We will have to wait for the answer to this question.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/15/2010 08:38 PM

July 15 Markup: Webcast Quotes from Senators Boxer and Warner

Senator Boxer: “As we move to the floor, I’m going to be teaming up with some colleagues who would like to see a little more done on the commercial side, so we’ll all work together and maybe we can get that done.  We think this is a great area and we know the Committee worked hard to find that balance but we’d like to work a little more on that.” (39:00 into webcast)

Senator Warner: “I wanted to highlight two things as somebody who’s been a large advocate of commercial spaceflight, both from a cargo standpoint and ultimately from a manned standpoint.  I want to thank Senator Nelson and the work of the Chairman and others to make sure that the funding levels moved up from where the draft legislation was.  I know it’s been a challenging process, I know the Administration has been working with us and others as well who are advocates of commercial space, and I think there may be even more room to go, but I think this is a very important good faith-effort.”  (53:50 into webcast)

Boy and howdy!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/15/2010 08:41 PM
...

I'm a tax-payer, I have no horse in this race other than seeing the best return on investment for my money.

I have been a part of many bids for computer equipment for the government, and I can't tell you how many times "favored" companies were chosen which cost multiple times more for the same or less capability, sometimes in the name of a single feature "check-box" (ignoring the more important features not included) but usually for no real reason. There were other competitors with similar price-points and features and quality as our systems, but they weren't chosen either. This is just one more example of the government not making a decision based on price/performance.

Is the idea that there should be a decision based on price/performance so outrageous that I have to be characterized as demanding "all the money"? Besides, I don't work for the government, the government works for me (as a tax-payer), so it's partly my money! The money belongs to the tax-payers, not to the government workers or the government contractors. I'm allowed to have an opinion on how it's spent, and I don't have to be happy when I think it's not being spent wisely.

SpaceX is great, but there are many other contenders out there. If a robust commercial system is to exist, there needs to be more than one.

I don't disagree with your preamble.  No one should.  That doesn't mean you have to abandon everything to achieve it. 

1.6 billion, or there abouts, for what the hard-corp advocates have compared to Gemini, should be sufficient.  SpaceX claims they did everything for less than the Ares 1 tower, approximately 500K.  As folks also like to point out, some of the rockets already exist and are flight proven, meaning Atlas and Delta.  Therefore, when factoring some amount of capital investment, 1.6 billion seems sufficient.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/15/2010 08:45 PM
Well, I agree that $1.6 billion is enough for a single commercial crew provider, more (if spent on more providers, not just squandered on a single one) could allow multiple providers to be available faster. I'd be much happier with the $3.3 billion and think it could allow multiple providers by 2015, but there will eventually be multiple commercial crew providers either way (though it may take a lot longer, like 2020).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/15/2010 08:53 PM
Well, I agree that $1.6 billion is enough for a single commercial crew provider, more (if spent on more providers, not just squandered on a single one) could allow multiple providers to be available faster. I'd be much happier with the $3.3 billion and think it could allow multiple providers by 2015, but there will eventually be multiple commercial crew providers either way (though it may take a lot longer, like 2020).
So  would I.

As a taxpayer, shelling out 9+B and watching Ares I-X was a very painful experience. I do not hold JSC or MSFC in high regard - more desire a tight leash with a choke chain on the end ...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drkskywxlt on 07/15/2010 08:57 PM
Robotic exploration precursor missions: 44+100+100= $244M (WH proposed $1.33B)

Quote
"Over 3 years, the legislation provides $244 million for Robotic Precursor Missions. " (same as earlier draft, WH $1.33B)


I thought the Boxer Amendment specifically increased that? 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/15/2010 08:59 PM
Well, I agree that $1.6 billion is enough for a single commercial crew provider, more (if spent on more providers, not just squandered on a single one) could allow multiple providers to be available faster. I'd be much happier with the $3.3 billion and think it could allow multiple providers by 2015, but there will eventually be multiple commercial crew providers either way (though it may take a lot longer, like 2020).
So  would I.

As a taxpayer, shelling out 9+B and watching Ares I-X was a very painful experience. I do not hold JSC or MSFC in high regard - more desire a tight leash with a choke chain on the end ...

Then you should probably keep your facts straight too if you're going to bash thousands of people for no reason.  9+ billion was not just for Ares 1-X.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/15/2010 09:02 PM
Well, I agree that $1.6 billion is enough for a single commercial crew provider, more (if spent on more providers, not just squandered on a single one) could allow multiple providers to be available faster. I'd be much happier with the $3.3 billion and think it could allow multiple providers by 2015, but there will eventually be multiple commercial crew providers either way (though it may take a lot longer, like 2020).

Why?  If SpaceX did if for what they claim in press releases and two rockets already exist and are flight proven, then 1.6 billion essentially allows for many "other SpaceX-types" with some wiggle room to account for variations in company-to-company. 

Again, this does not include whatever factor capital investment is required.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 09:04 PM
I'm sorry, where does it say that in the document?

If by that you mean the JSC document, page 175 of the PDF on L2 lists sidemount IOC as the middle of FY15, while the first Block I inline could be ready by early FY17 (with ET-94 demo flight at the end of FY15; page 178).

JSC management is 100% Side-Mount oriented. They said several things that were designed to enhance the expectations of Side-Mount at the expense of In-Line. Of course they would. It's their baby. The JSC vs. MSFC (Side-Mount vs. In-Line) dynamic is in full swing in that document. Knowing the politics at play, would anyone have expected to see anything different?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 09:04 PM
I also just noticed that none of the released statements (from Sens. Rockefeller, Nelson, Hutchison, and Shelby) actually explicitly mention Orion.  Hutchison and Nelson do mention a "crew capsule for exploration", though. Perhaps the issue of whether Orion should be developed as a BEO-only vehicle is still in discussion? That'd also explain where the money to pay for the amendments is coming from, since the budget top-line is being kept the same.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 09:06 PM
Robotic exploration precursor missions: 44+100+100= $244M (WH proposed $1.33B)

Quote
"Over 3 years, the legislation provides $244 million for Robotic Precursor Missions. " (same as earlier draft, WH $1.33B)


I thought the Boxer Amendment specifically increased that? 

That was for exploration & space technology, which actually curiously still seems to be at the same level as in the earlier draft (at least according to Shelby).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 09:07 PM
It'll be important to watch if Shelby, using his position on the Appropriations Committee, plays any funding games again, like last year when he had CCDev funding cut from $150m to $50m.

Nelson and Hutchison several times emphasized that they wrote this in concert with Shelby and Mulkowski, and they don't expect much changes from Appropriations (or the White House, for that matter).

Of the 4 names, Shelby is by far the most powerful and full-on undisputed king of Appropriations. His state is Alabama, home to MSFC, which intensely favors the In-Line over the Side-Mount. Any takers on how this will play out? Read the tea leaves.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/15/2010 09:13 PM
Well, I'm glad Warner is going to continue the fight for more commercial funding.    I'm less optimistic about the tech budget.

If commercial advocates in the Senate are smart, they'll be talking up the gap and russian price gouging every chance they get.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rjholling on 07/15/2010 09:22 PM
Well, I agree that $1.6 billion is enough for a single commercial crew provider, more (if spent on more providers, not just squandered on a single one) could allow multiple providers to be available faster. I'd be much happier with the $3.3 billion and think it could allow multiple providers by 2015, but there will eventually be multiple commercial crew providers either way (though it may take a lot longer, like 2020).
So  would I.

As a taxpayer, shelling out 9+B and watching Ares I-X was a very painful experience. I do not hold JSC or MSFC in high regard - more desire a tight leash with a choke chain on the end ...

Then you should probably keep your facts straight too if you're going to bash thousands of people for no reason.  9+ billion was not just for Ares 1-X.
I think what he is saying is that there should be greater accountability with the way funds are spent.  While Ares I didn't account for the whole $9 billion, it sure as heck tied up Orion forcing numerous redesigns that forced it over budget and its performance to lack what it was envisioned as.  Certainly this is not the fault of the vast majority of people who work at those centers but rather people who pushed their favorite design over serious misgivings by a lot of people who said Ares I was a poor architecture.  There should be greater transparency in reporting what goes on at NASA to Congress, or really any government agency for that matter to see that funds are not wasted.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 09:24 PM
I also just noticed that none of the released statements (from Sens. Rockefeller, Nelson, Hutchison, and Shelby) actually explicitly mention Orion.  Hutchison and Nelson do mention a "crew capsule for exploration", though.

Didn't have to. It's mentioned in the draft, Section 303:
The Administrator shall pursue the development of a multi-purpose crew vehicle to be available as soon as practicable, and no later than for use with the Space Launch System. The vehicle shall be based on designs and materials developed in the Orion project.

Orion as we know it will be morphed back into what it was originally intended for.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 09:24 PM
CSE happy:

Coalition Commends Committee’s Passage of NASA Plan

HOUSTON – The Coalition for Space Exploration (Coalition) commends the action taken today by the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation to authorize a nonpartisan spending plan for NASA.

The legislation is an important, positive measure for our nation’s space exploration program that demonstrates fiscal responsibility, maximizes goals of the program and offers commitment to current workforce resources.

The Coalition applauds the committee for acknowledging the strong support of the American people for a robust space exploration program, and for providing the needed leadership to ensure a balanced approach to meeting our nation’s goals in space.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/15/2010 09:25 PM
Well, I agree that $1.6 billion is enough for a single commercial crew provider, more (if spent on more providers, not just squandered on a single one) could allow multiple providers to be available faster. I'd be much happier with the $3.3 billion and think it could allow multiple providers by 2015, but there will eventually be multiple commercial crew providers either way (though it may take a lot longer, like 2020).
So  would I.

As a taxpayer, shelling out 9+B and watching Ares I-X was a very painful experience. I do not hold JSC or MSFC in high regard - more desire a tight leash with a choke chain on the end ...

Then you should probably keep your facts straight too if you're going to bash thousands of people for no reason.  9+ billion was not just for Ares 1-X.
I think what he is saying is that there should be greater accountability with the way funds are spent.  While Ares I didn't account for the whole $9 billion, it sure as heck tied up Orion forcing numerous redesigns that forced it over budget and its performance to lack what it was envisioned as.  Certainly this is not the fault of the vast majority of people who work at those centers but rather people who pushed their favorite design over serious misgivings by a lot of people who said Ares I was a poor architecture.  There should be greater transparency in reporting what goes on at NASA to Congress, or really any government agency for that matter to see that funds are not wasted.

Speaking of Orion, any chance we will see land landing return now that it will be sitting on a far more capable vehicle?

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 09:28 PM
I also just noticed that none of the released statements (from Sens. Rockefeller, Nelson, Hutchison, and Shelby) actually explicitly mention Orion.  Hutchison and Nelson do mention a "crew capsule for exploration", though.

Didn't have to. It's mentioned in the draft, Section 303:
The Administrator shall pursue the development of a multi-purpose crew vehicle to be available as soon as practicable, and no later than for use with the Space Launch System. The vehicle shall be based on designs and materials developed in the Orion project.

Orion as we know it will be morphed back into what it was originally intended for.

That still leaves open the question of whether Orion will be used for transporting crew to LEO, though, or if crew will be launched separately. I also think use of the phrase "the vehicle shall be based on designs and materials developed in the Orion project" rather than simply describing it as "the Orion multi-purpose crew vehicle" is interesting.

I suppose it could go the other way, too, and the funding for the amended items is paid for by cost reductions in Orion since it no longer has to be crammed onto an Ares I.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/15/2010 09:31 PM
Calm it down please. There's literally four people playing tag team. Let others feel they can post without being jumped on.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/15/2010 09:35 PM
I also just noticed that none of the released statements (from Sens. Rockefeller, Nelson, Hutchison, and Shelby) actually explicitly mention Orion.  Hutchison and Nelson do mention a "crew capsule for exploration", though.

Didn't have to. It's mentioned in the draft, Section 303:
The Administrator shall pursue the development of a multi-purpose crew vehicle to be available as soon as practicable, and no later than for use with the Space Launch System. The vehicle shall be based on designs and materials developed in the Orion project.

Orion as we know it will be morphed back into what it was originally intended for.

That still leaves open the question of whether Orion will be used for transporting crew to LEO, though, or if crew will be launched separately. I also think use of the phrase "the vehicle shall be based on designs and materials developed in the Orion project" rather than simply describing it as "the Orion multi-purpose crew vehicle" is interesting.

I suppose it could go the other way, too, and the funding for the amended items is paid for by cost reductions in Orion since it no longer has to be crammed onto an Ares I.

Draft bill calls for the MPCV to be capable of launching crew to ISS, but doesn't mean it HAS to be used that way I suppose.

Quote
(3) The capability to provide an alternative means of delivery of crew and cargo to the ISS, in the event other vehicles, whether commercial vehicles or partner-supplied vehicles, are unable to perform 
that function.

I think the language intentionally high level so that its "Orion" but with whatever mods are needed for its role. I don't they want to incur termination costs.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/15/2010 09:37 PM
Just from things Ive read smart people post here in the past, I'd be surprised if Orion block 1 was significantly changed.   And, imo, they are still going to have a close the gap mentality.   They may even develop a sense that they are racing commercial to the finish line.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/15/2010 09:48 PM
Just from things Ive read smart people post here in the past, I'd be surprised if Orion block 1 was significantly changed.   And, imo, they are still going to have a close the gap mentality.   They may even develop a sense that they are racing commercial to the finish line.

They may even continue with the Block 0 already being worked first, and evolve from there.

If functionality is being brought back in, Orion isn't going to be cheaper, so hopefully they don't pull from Orion funding with these amendments while at the same time levying additional requirements.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: padrat on 07/15/2010 10:01 PM
I'll just say that for myself, I'm just happy that MAYBE now we can get some hint of direction of how to proceed with work. Because, quite frankly, working with this mentality of just drifting along, not knowing what to maintain, tear down, etc. because noone knows what the next program, if there is one, will require, since everyone is waiting for SOMEONE to make a frickin' decision, is really beginning to suck.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 10:02 PM
Just from things Ive read smart people post here in the past, I'd be surprised if Orion block 1 was significantly changed.   And, imo, they are still going to have a close the gap mentality.   They may even develop a sense that they are racing commercial to the finish line.

They may even continue with the Block 0 already being worked first, and evolve from there.

If functionality is being brought back in, Orion isn't going to be cheaper, so hopefully they don't pull from Orion funding with these amendments while at the same time levying additional requirements.

My understanding of the July 13th Senate bill was that there would only be one single BEO capsule since BEO capability was stated to be a minimum requirement for the capsule. In other words, there would be no block 0 or block 1 capsules.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: STS Tony on 07/15/2010 10:13 PM
Good news for sure. Not too sure what the amendments mean and hopefully it does not harm HLV for the sake of the fat cat commercial companies.

Remember what Augustine said, you can ONLY close the gap from the left, and only shuttle can do that. I would not want to lose another flight (STS-136 or whatever) for the sake of Warner's lobbying.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/15/2010 10:17 PM
Just from things Ive read smart people post here in the past, I'd be surprised if Orion block 1 was significantly changed.   And, imo, they are still going to have a close the gap mentality.   They may even develop a sense that they are racing commercial to the finish line.

They may even continue with the Block 0 already being worked first, and evolve from there.

If functionality is being brought back in, Orion isn't going to be cheaper, so hopefully they don't pull from Orion funding with these amendments while at the same time levying additional requirements.

My understanding of the July 13th Senate bill was that there would only be one single BEO capsule since BEO capability was stated to be a minimum requirement for the capsule. In other words, there would be no block 0 or block 1 capsules.

Yeah but with this snippet below, I wonder if they couldn't use the Block 0 for a "test", which was pretty much its original intent until the CRV idea came along (though it was always launched manned).  It seems like it still could be a Block 0 before 2016, and then be at full BEO capacity by 2016.

I can't recall any language in the draft that forbids it from evolving it from a Block 0 prior to 2016. They seem to simply require it have BEO capability by 2016.

Quote
For purposes of meeting such goal, the Administrator may undertake a test of the transportation vehicle at the ISS before that date.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/15/2010 10:19 PM
Not too sure what the amendments mean and hopefully it does not harm HLV for the sake of the fat cat commercial companies.

Thanks, that's one of the funniest things I've read today.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rcoppola on 07/15/2010 10:20 PM
I am of the same mind about Orion. If it is to be for BEO and it needs to be ready when the SLS is slated, then Block 2 should be vigorously pursued.

As for what transpired today...I am excited that we at least have a date and potentially firm direction in hand. I love reading all your posts. Your Pasions and knowledge are inspiring, but speaking plainly, I just want the hell out of LEO!

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rv_rocket on 07/15/2010 10:28 PM
I'll just say that for myself, I'm just happy that MAYBE now we can get some hint of direction of how to proceed with work. Because, quite frankly, working with this mentality of just drifting along, not knowing what to maintain, tear down, etc. because noone knows what the next program, if there is one, will require, since everyone is waiting for SOMEONE to make a frickin' decision, is really beginning to suck.

Well said padrat! Let's get on with it!!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 10:32 PM
Any confirmation yet of White House backing of this bill?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: 2552 on 07/15/2010 10:33 PM
"Greater Houston Partnership Applauds bi-partisan compromise bill"

http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=31251
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/15/2010 10:34 PM
Any confirmation yet of White House backing of this bill?

Was also wondering this since Nelson said to expect it today.  Do the amendments have to be settled first?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 10:37 PM
JSC management is 100% Side-Mount oriented. They said several things that were designed to enhance the expectations of Side-Mount at the expense of In-Line. Of course they would. It's their baby. The JSC vs. MSFC (Side-Mount vs. In-Line) dynamic is in full swing in that document. Knowing the politics at play, would anyone have expected to see anything different?

I agree, but there's no way inline would be ready before sidemount, there's just too much new stuff on it. Inline is probably cheaper in the long run, but that's not the issue at the moment...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 10:44 PM
Any confirmation yet of White House backing of this bill?

Was also wondering this since Nelson said to expect it today.  Do the amendments have to be settled first?

The amendments have passed as modified. But we don't know what that means.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 10:51 PM
...

I'm a tax-payer, I have no horse in this race other than seeing the best return on investment for my money.

I have been a part of many bids for computer equipment for the government, and I can't tell you how many times "favored" companies were chosen which cost multiple times more for the same or less capability, sometimes in the name of a single feature "check-box" (ignoring the more important features not included) but usually for no real reason. There were other competitors with similar price-points and features and quality as our systems, but they weren't chosen either. This is just one more example of the government not making a decision based on price/performance.

Is the idea that there should be a decision based on price/performance so outrageous that I have to be characterized as demanding "all the money"? Besides, I don't work for the government, the government works for me (as a tax-payer), so it's partly my money! The money belongs to the tax-payers, not to the government workers or the government contractors. I'm allowed to have an opinion on how it's spent, and I don't have to be happy when I think it's not being spent wisely.

SpaceX is great, but there are many other contenders out there. If a robust commercial system is to exist, there needs to be more than one.

I don't disagree with your preamble.  No one should.  That doesn't mean you have to abandon everything to achieve it. 

1.6 billion, or there abouts, for what the hard-corp advocates have compared to Gemini, should be sufficient.  SpaceX claims they did everything for less than the Ares 1 tower, approximately 500K.  As folks also like to point out, some of the rockets already exist and are flight proven, meaning Atlas and Delta.  Therefore, when factoring some amount of capital investment, 1.6 billion seems sufficient.

I'm just curious why you think it's a good idea to be rewarding failure and punishing success?  I mean, if you were a neutral party looking at this, wouldn't you think that the program that spent $10B and didn't produce much more than powerpoint slides should maybe possibly be treated less favorably than the company that spent less than $500M and put a vehicle all the way into orbit?  If this situation existed in some other government agency's domain, would you act the same way?

Me, I try to reward what I want to see more of. 

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/15/2010 10:54 PM
Well, I agree that $1.6 billion is enough for a single commercial crew provider, more (if spent on more providers, not just squandered on a single one) could allow multiple providers to be available faster. I'd be much happier with the $3.3 billion and think it could allow multiple providers by 2015, but there will eventually be multiple commercial crew providers either way (though it may take a lot longer, like 2020).

Why?  If SpaceX did if for what they claim in press releases and two rockets already exist and are flight proven, then 1.6 billion essentially allows for many "other SpaceX-types" with some wiggle room to account for variations in company-to-company. 

Again, this does not include whatever factor capital investment is required.

I actually don't disagree with OV on this one.  The $1.6B isn't necessarily the end of the world.  Back two years ago, we were hoping that we could somehow stretch $500M to cover at least two companies.  That said, putting restrictions on how the money is spent the first year is stupid.  How long did it take them from when they had the go-ahead on COTS to when they had the solicitation figured out, proposals in, and awards in place?  Why do they need to spend a whole year studying the problem out, when they already have good experience to build on?  Or is it just $20B HLV programs that should get funding go ahead without a plan ready in advance?

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 10:54 PM
but there's no way inline would be ready before sidemount, there's just too much new stuff on it.

You don't understand what Side-Mount really is then. That "thing" they hang on the side of the ET is not just a huge cargo canister. It's an entire rocket all it's own that has to be developed from scratch. There is no way in hell that can be deployed faster than the inline. Put propellant tanks inside the cargo bay and it flies without the ET. It's not a cargo carrier. It's a bloody great rocket with an internal cargo bay.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/15/2010 10:59 PM
...wouldn't you think that the program that spent $10B and didn't produce much more than powerpoint slides
~Jon

It wasn't the *program* that spent the money. It was Mike Griffin and his hand-picked crowd pursuing the Griffin vision while totally, and it seemed at times, deliberately blind to reality. They are gone now, thank God!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/15/2010 11:04 PM
Any confirmation yet of White House backing of this bill?

There seems to be a confirmation from the White House in this article but it's not exactly a ringing endorsement:
http://www.spacenews.com/policy/100715-senate-nasa-bill.html

Quote
“While we are still in the process of reviewing the details of the draft, the bill appears to contain the critical elements necessary for achieving the President’s vision for NASA and represents an important first step towards helping us achieve the key goals the President has laid out,” the administration official said in a July 15 statement. “We look forward to continuing to work with Congress to help advance an ambitious and achievable space program — one that helps us blaze a new trail of innovation and discovery.”

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Downix on 07/15/2010 11:05 PM
but there's no way inline would be ready before sidemount, there's just too much new stuff on it.

You don't understand what Side-Mount really is then. That "thing" they hang on the side of the ET is not just a huge cargo canister. It's an entire rocket all it's own that has to be developed from scratch. There is no way in hell that can be deployed faster than the inline. Put propellant tanks inside the cargo bay and it flies without the ET. It's not a cargo carrier. It's a bloody great rocket with an internal cargo bay.
*chuckles*  I am suddenly imagining someone with a bright idea of mounting two Delta IV on the side....
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/15/2010 11:19 PM
You don't understand what Side-Mount really is then. That "thing" they hang on the side of the ET is not just a huge cargo canister. It's an entire rocket all it's own that has to be developed from scratch. There is no way in hell that can be deployed faster than the inline. Put propellant tanks inside the cargo bay and it flies without the ET. It's not a cargo carrier. It's a bloody great rocket with an internal cargo bay.

All that is true Chuck, but that doesn't mean an Inline would read any sooner. The "bloody great rocket" has just as many systems and complexity as Inline, but the load paths and LOX tank for Inline are unique, and add development time.

I'm not going to argue that Sidemount has lower recurring costs, but I do think it would be ready sooner. It's up to NASA HQ now to make the decision which is more important.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: alexw on 07/15/2010 11:20 PM
...wouldn't you think that the program that spent $10B and didn't produce much more than powerpoint slides
It wasn't the *program* that spent the money. It was Mike Griffin and his hand-picked crowd pursuing the Griffin vision while totally, and it seemed at times, deliberately blind to reality. They are gone now, thank God!
   How much of the MSFC (and Ares @ JSC?) senior management is still in place? (Apart from Jeff Hanley.) The same management that, apparently, either wasn't technically competent to see the Ares forest for the trees, or were ineffective at moving their concerns upstream?
   Obviously Griffin's top-down pressure is hugely to blame, but his plans were being executed, ineffectively, by others. What reason is there to believe that they will now execute inline efficiently as DIRECT?
    -Alex
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/16/2010 12:00 AM
and on that same line of thinking, do we or do we NOT want Mike Griffin's endorsement of this plan? Oh the irony's abound :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/16/2010 12:06 AM
...

I'm a tax-payer, I have no horse in this race other than seeing the best return on investment for my money.

I have been a part of many bids for computer equipment for the government, and I can't tell you how many times "favored" companies were chosen which cost multiple times more for the same or less capability, sometimes in the name of a single feature "check-box" (ignoring the more important features not included) but usually for no real reason. There were other competitors with similar price-points and features and quality as our systems, but they weren't chosen either. This is just one more example of the government not making a decision based on price/performance.

Is the idea that there should be a decision based on price/performance so outrageous that I have to be characterized as demanding "all the money"? Besides, I don't work for the government, the government works for me (as a tax-payer), so it's partly my money! The money belongs to the tax-payers, not to the government workers or the government contractors. I'm allowed to have an opinion on how it's spent, and I don't have to be happy when I think it's not being spent wisely.

SpaceX is great, but there are many other contenders out there. If a robust commercial system is to exist, there needs to be more than one.

I don't disagree with your preamble.  No one should.  That doesn't mean you have to abandon everything to achieve it. 

1.6 billion, or there abouts, for what the hard-corp advocates have compared to Gemini, should be sufficient.  SpaceX claims they did everything for less than the Ares 1 tower, approximately 500K.  As folks also like to point out, some of the rockets already exist and are flight proven, meaning Atlas and Delta.  Therefore, when factoring some amount of capital investment, 1.6 billion seems sufficient.

I'm just curious why you think it's a good idea to be rewarding failure and punishing success?  I mean, if you were a neutral party looking at this, wouldn't you think that the program that spent $10B and didn't produce much more than powerpoint slides should maybe possibly be treated less favorably than the company that spent less than $500M and put a vehicle all the way into orbit?  If this situation existed in some other government agency's domain, would you act the same way?

Me, I try to reward what I want to see more of. 

~Jon

Quite honestly Jon, I am not inclined to explain my rationale to someone who is only going to whine further, try to pick something apart, etc no matter what I say.  No one will change what you choose to believe no matter the data provided. 

Look at your comments on the this forum today, quite sad actually.  Even when you say you agree with me on a point, you still choose to place an unnecessary dig in at people, programs, etc you know next to nothing about. 

As I said earlier and will say again, I hope to work with everyone in this industry, because we are all in this together and must work to make this compromise work also.  Clearly not everyone feels the same.  Some believe they are better than others, feel entitled to tell everyone else how something should be done and everything else is utterly unacceptable, etc. 

Hopefully, as we move forward, we find most out there within industry and government are willing to make this work. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/16/2010 12:08 AM
Thank you Chris Bergin. Great job. Without you... No, I'm not even going to think about it!

Cheers and More Cheers!



Edited.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Silmfeanor on 07/16/2010 12:19 AM
As someone who just relatively recently got into the thick of all this legislationing and political process, my feeling is something along the lines of carefull optimism, with carefull being the key word. Although it certainly looks better than the previous proposal, I cant help feeling uneasy with the HLV without a goal thing, smells too much like CxP to me.

Let's say it like this; in 4-5 years, when im reviewing this topic, I hope I dont feel like I was overtly optimistic. I guess there still are interesting times ahead of us. I'll just have the good faith that everything will turn out for the better and hope that faith was warranted.

edit: I'd also like to extend thanks to Chris for these very accurate and timely updates and inside informations in the process. Gives me the chance to play prophet to a few less informed friends of me again, until I direct them to NSF of course.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/16/2010 12:21 AM

I'm just curious why you think it's a good idea to be rewarding failure and punishing success?  I mean, if you were a neutral party looking at this, wouldn't you think that the program that spent $10B and didn't produce much more than powerpoint slides should maybe possibly be treated less favorably than the company that spent less than $500M and put a vehicle all the way into orbit?  If this situation existed in some other government agency's domain, would you act the same way?

Me, I try to reward what I want to see more of. 

~Jon

5-seg SRB, J2-X, Orion, LAS, recovery system development and testing, test and launch facilities construction, new tooling are all a bit more than powerpoint now and none of it is really wasted going forward now.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=21787.msg596873#msg596873
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/16/2010 12:27 AM
Thank you Chris Bergin. Great job. Without you... No, I'm not even going think about it!

Cheers and More Cheers!

What did I do? :D
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/16/2010 12:34 AM
... so ISS is going to be serviceable only by COTS and the Russians till at least 2016-2017, with no US backup.

In addition to the ESA & JAXA modules, both EELV's have the capability to provide material support to ISS, at least excepting "the last mile". But that is solvable. 

I guess here's my question.  One of OV's and 51D's chief complaints about FY11 was that it left the station in the lurch.  This does almost *nothing* to change the situation (other than a single token extra shuttle flight), but now they're happy.  Why was "relying on commercial crew" then so unacceptable, but now, when the government doesn't really have any better backup options than before, it's now acceptable?  If they honestly were so worried about the fate of ISS before, I don't see how this new budget actually alleviates any of those concerns.  Which makes me doubt the sincerity of their concerns, even though I have a lot of respect for them as individuals.

Quote
It's the lack of a firm plan for the HLV that makes me nervous. What's it going to be used for? There are great possibilities, both good and bad, and without a plan or mission, it's too easy for extrordinary waste to set in at the cost of other more worthy efforts. I want the HLV, I really, really do, but I want it knowing how it's supposed to be used.

Bingo.  They're doing the same thing they accused FY11 of, just swap out "flagship technologies" for HLV/BEO spacecraft development. 

~Jon

Jon,

You might try reading the entire bill...and recognize that it is the product of a compromise among a WIDE range of views. "Compromise"....that's when all parties involved in a discussion or dispute try to find the place where they can all agree and establish a foundation from which each can see a path forward for the things they feel are important.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Danderman on 07/16/2010 12:38 AM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 12:41 AM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


Nelson said the appropriators were also on board on this. Mikulski and Shelby were both supportive.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/16/2010 12:41 AM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


And why are you so sure they won't....or do you really just hope they do not?  I believe it is the latter and you are just trying to make it sound like you are informed with some "insider" info. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 12:53 AM
Here is Senator Hutchison's statement:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=7457bd6b-1721-4c17-994c-77595f3099ae&Statement_id=7ceb6eb1-6902-49d0-b9be-934420b484b8&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=7&YearDisplay=2010

Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

I don't think anybody posted it yet, but here's Chairman Rockefeller's opening statement and summary of "key elements" of the bill:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=4ae69fe8-581d-4d10-85b0-5b15643680b9

According to Nelson's statement, $1.6B will be going to commercial crew development. So it's a bit more than in the July 13th proposed bill.

It just occurred to me that Nelson is possibly including the extra COTS money in his $1.6B total. So commercial crew might be less than $1.6B.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 12:54 AM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


Nelson said the appropriators were also on board on this. Mikulski and Shelby were both supportive.

Although as I mentioned previously, the figures Shelby gave in his statement don't add up with Nelson's figures for increased commercial crew funding. If the top-line is the same (as a number of senators have stated), the money's coming from somewhere, and that somewhere isn't clear yet.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 12:57 AM
Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

I don't think anybody posted it yet, but here's Chairman Rockefeller's opening statement and summary of "key elements" of the bill:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=4ae69fe8-581d-4d10-85b0-5b15643680b9

According to Nelson's statement, $1.6B will be going to commercial crew development. So it's a bit more than in the July 13th proposed bill.

It just occurred to me that Nelson is possibly including the extra COTS money in his $1.6B total. So commercial crew might be less than $1.6B.

I just read it through again, and you are indeed correct: "And, it bolsters commercial space ventures by allocating about $1.6 billion for development in the next three years"

Supposedly Warner's and Boxer's amendments for increased commercial crew and space technology funding were incorporated, though. If so, where's the money?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: SpaceDave on 07/16/2010 01:04 AM
Warner's amendment was not included in the committee session. They will fight for it now when the bill goes to the Senate floor.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: gladiator1332 on 07/16/2010 01:08 AM
Glad to see some good news come out of Congress for once. :) Now the fun part starts...the ball is now in NASA's court to do the right thing.

Really at a major crossroads....Sidemount pretty much boxes us in (in terms of evolution). Inline allows for much more growth. Which one does NASA choose? Or do they take the middle road and choose the hybrid?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Diagoras on 07/16/2010 01:09 AM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


Thanks for the update on the legislation progress, it sometimes gets hard to keep track of where this is in Congress.

Appropriations might agree, if Obama says he's good with it. I can't really see them passing something he's not alright with.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/16/2010 01:13 AM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


Whatever is agreed will include a SD-HLV. Listening to that Press Conference and hearing Senator after Senator gush about SRBs showed where their preferences lie. Congress has form here as it canceled the last all EELV plan in 2005. It was very optimistic to assume they would just meekly accept FY2011 as is especially when there has been open hostility to it ever since introduction.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/16/2010 01:14 AM
Hahaha, someone should tell 51D about this. Someone might be left wondering "which center is KFC?"

Hehe...good thing initials aren't used in the actual legislative text, where "Kennedy Space Center" is spelled out, as opposed to this excerpt from the Section-by-Section description. This is what happens when someone is asked to quickly pull together a summary of the bill to send around (Wednesday morning) when the bill was distributed to Member offices, and those working on the bill don't read through the draft carefully enough--or too soon after eating fried chicken, as suggested--to catch it.

It has been passed on to the "appropriate authorities" to at least correct the version on the Committee website.

"Thank ya muchly, phantomdj!!"
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/16/2010 01:17 AM
Glad to see some good news come out of Congress for once. :) Now the fun part starts...the ball is now in NASA's court to do the right thing.
The ball is not in NASA's court yet.  It still will be a bit before this bill makes it through Congress; today was another step in that process, but there are several remaining.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 01:18 AM
A commenter on another site looked at the FY2010 projections for FY2011-2013 and noticed that Orion expenditures were about $1.9B-$2.0B/year, while in the draft bill from earlier this week (which seems to be largely the same as today's funding-wise) it's $1.3B-1.4B/year. Any thoughts on the difference?

http://www.nasa.gov/pdf/345955main_8_Exploration_%20FY_2010_UPDATED_final.pdf
http://blogs.chron.com/sciguy/archives/NASA%20Rockefeller1.pdf
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Ronsmytheiii on 07/16/2010 01:24 AM
Glad to see some good news come out of Congress for once. :) Now the fun part starts...the ball is now in NASA's court to do the right thing.
The ball is not in NASA's court yet.  It still will be a bit before this bill makes it through Congress; today was another step in that process, but there are several remaining.


Perhaps, but with Senate and Presidential support it would not be too much of a leap to see forward work being done to support the draft bill as is was being done for the proposed FY2011,  work for STS-135/136 has already been worked for a while per L2 sources.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/16/2010 01:29 AM
Glad to see some good news come out of Congress for once. :) Now the fun part starts...the ball is now in NASA's court to do the right thing.
The ball is not in NASA's court yet.  It still will be a bit before this bill makes it through Congress; today was another step in that process, but there are several remaining.


Perhaps, but with Senate and Presidential support it would not be too much of a leap to see forward work being done to support the draft bill as is was being done for the proposed FY2011,  work for STS-135/136 has already been worked for a while per L2 sources.
Those would be more akin to high-level assessments than work in earnest.  Even if it would be within its authority to do so in absence of the kind of language in this bill, NASA had not yet committed to fly 135 (and hasn't yet).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 01:43 AM
Nelson's statement:

http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/details.cfm?id=326398&

I don't think anybody posted it yet, but here's Chairman Rockefeller's opening statement and summary of "key elements" of the bill:

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=4ae69fe8-581d-4d10-85b0-5b15643680b9

According to Nelson's statement, $1.6B will be going to commercial crew development. So it's a bit more than in the July 13th proposed bill.

It just occurred to me that Nelson is possibly including the extra COTS money in his $1.6B total. So commercial crew might be less than $1.6B.

I just read it through again, and you are indeed correct: "And, it bolsters commercial space ventures by allocating about $1.6 billion for development in the next three years"

Supposedly Warner's and Boxer's amendments for increased commercial crew and space technology funding were incorporated, though. If so, where's the money?

I suspect that some of the amendements passed but were for much lesser amounts. They said the amendements passed but "as modified". The modifications must have been to the amounts proposed.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: spectre000 on 07/16/2010 01:45 AM
I'm happy to see congress directing Nasa to build a new heavy lift launcher.  But this all just seems like 2004 all over again.  What's going to happen when a new administration takes office?  2016 is a long ways away.  Our problem is we keep switching gears every 5-10 years. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/16/2010 01:47 AM
I suspect that some of the amendement passed but were for much lesser amounts. They said the amendements as modified. The modifications most of been to the amounts proposed.
Definitely another question for 51D Mascot, but listening to Senator Hutchison's motion again in the archived webcast, I do not hear an amendment from Senator Warner in the list she read.  (As SpaceDave noted (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618887#msg618887) a few posts back.)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 01:52 AM
I suspect that some of the amendments passed but were for much lesser amounts. They said that the amendments were passed but as modified. The modifications must have been to the amounts proposed.
Definitely another question for 51D Mascot, but listening to Senator Hutchison's motion again in the archived webcast, I do not hear an amendment from Senator Warner in the list she read.  (As SpaceDave noted (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618887#msg618887) a few posts back.)


I think that you are right about Warner's amendement. As far as the other amendments, 51D Mascot kind of answered this question in this post by saying the amendments were relatively minor and that the revised bill will not be very different from the July 13th bill:

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22163.msg618865#msg618865
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/16/2010 02:00 AM
Hahaha, someone should tell 51D about this. Someone might be left wondering "which center is KFC?"

Hehe...good thing initials aren't used in the actual legislative text, where "Kennedy Space Center" is spelled out, as opposed to this excerpt from the Section-by-Section description. This is what happens when someone is asked to quickly pull together a summary of the bill to send around (Wednesday morning) when the bill was distributed to Member offices, and those working on the bill don't read through the draft carefully enough--or too soon after eating fried chicken, as suggested--to catch it.

It has been passed on to the "appropriate authorities" to at least correct the version on the Committee website.

"Thank ya muchly, phantomdj!!"


Thank you 51D Mascot. Excellent work!

Cheers and More Cheers!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: SpacexULA on 07/16/2010 02:10 AM
I'm happy to see congress directing Nasa to build a new heavy lift launcher.  But this all just seems like 2004 all over again.  What's going to happen when a new administration takes office?  2016 is a long ways away.  Our problem is we keep switching gears every 5-10 years.

That's the point of this type of transition.  IF Obama gets a second term, it's possible the follow on HLV, and 1, 2 or even 3 commercial launchers could be going to LEO by the end of his second term.  IF gears are changed at that point it would be payload changes not launcher changes.

So the "worst" that could happen is in 2016 President Sara Palin decides she is going to go to a new destination, say Moon 1st instead of NEO.  In the end that's the good thing about a non shuttle architecture, you can change destination much quicker.

Now if Obama get's 1 term, who knows, we could be back here again on 1-20-13, but this time with only commercial launchers and internationals going to ISS.  Then it gets REALLY hairy.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: ratman on 07/16/2010 02:24 AM
I think the motto of the day should be the famous quote from Sir Winston:
“You can always count on Americans to do the right thing - after they've tried everything else.” :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/16/2010 02:29 AM
I think the motto of the day should be the famous quote from Sir Winston:
“You can always count on Americans to do the right thing - after they've tried everything else.” :)

Heh, yeah, I just had that very same thought!  Glad to see Congress do the right thing here!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/16/2010 02:47 AM
I'm happy to see congress directing Nasa to build a new heavy lift launcher.  But this all just seems like 2004 all over again.  What's going to happen when a new administration takes office?  2016 is a long ways away.  Our problem is we keep switching gears every 5-10 years. 

Well, if what was set in motion today turns into another Ares 1, then we'll need to switch gears.

Both jongoff and NOofC mentioned something, and it does deserve some discussion: a system was rewarded today (some refer to it as the Arsenal system) that hasn't successfully completed a HSF system since the Shuttle. Rewarding failure strikes many as a recipe for continued failure, especially when the alternative was to join hands with the Air Force and commercial space to build a new, exciting kerolox architecture with an eye to reducing operating costs. Now NASA is going off alone again with a HLV that most likely will have no other customer.

We already know we didn't pick the launcher with the lowest operating costs. A failure to produce a working launch system, or the production of a launcher with a failure rate approaching that of the Shuttle will call the entire NASA HSF program into question. Given how the medicine of the original FY2011 was taken, I feel the only path forward from there would be to follow the recommendations of the Aldridge commission and break up NASA. It would be the only way to get control of the political process in the face of repeated failures.

Success moving forward is vital; we can't afford another VentureStar or Ares 1. I'm keeping my fingers crossed, and hope we can find the money for fuel depots and that kerolox engine just in case the Arsenal system fails once again.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/16/2010 02:59 AM
http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/7110626.html

"We think this is a great start," said Lori Garver, NASA's deputy administrator. "It accomplishes the major shifts the president set out to have for the space program."

An unnamed White House official not authorized to comment said "the bill appears to contain the critical elements necessary for achieving the president's mission for NASA."



http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/15/AR2010071505913.html

"This is a milestone in the realignment of the space program for the 21st century," said Lori Garver, NASA's deputy administrator. "It preserves the most important parts of the president's plan."


http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-senate-committee-vote-20100715,0,2590515.story

With the Obama plan going nowhere fast, Nelson said he was forced to compromise. Indeed, during the past several weeks, several proponents of the president's plan met with Nelson to express their concerns about the bill -- only to be told that NASA's future had to be determined by "political science," not "rocket science."

But Deputy NASA chief Lori Garver defended the end result, saying the Obama administration got what it wanted in canceling Constellation and getting some money -- $1.6billion during three years -- for commercial rockets that would carry cargo and crew. "The key aspects of what the president set out for NASA are in this bill," she said.


http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/16/science/space/16nasa.html?_r=1

“This is way beyond what we had hoped for, the ability to come into agreement with Congress this soon,” Ms. Garver said.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/16/2010 03:13 AM
http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/technology/109109-adoption-of-nasa-compromise-means-continued-leadership-in-space-exploration-rep-frank-wolf

Last month, I joined Reps. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.), John Culberson (R-Texas), Gene Green (D-Texas) and 58 other bipartisan members representing 18 states on a letter to President Obama detailing a compromise plan centering on the immediate development of a “heavy lift rocket” and crew capsule capable of exploring beyond low Earth orbit, something the U.S. has not done since the Apollo era.

Our compromise proposal — which was embraced by the Senate Commerce Committee in its NASA authorization bill — ensures that NASA will have an exploration rocket available within six years. Our plan also capitalizes on the nearly $10 billion already invested in the development of the next-generation rocket, guaranteeing that taxpayers' previous investments were not made in vain. Importantly, it protects our defense industrial base and keeps our skilled space workforce employed, making sure we don’t lose their critical skill sets.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/16/2010 03:16 AM

Both jongoff and NOofC mentioned something, and it does deserve some discussion: a system was rewarded today (some refer to it as the Arsenal system) that hasn't successfully completed a HSF system since the Shuttle. Rewarding failure strikes many as a recipe for continued failure, especially when the alternative was to join hands with the Air Force and commercial space to build a new, exciting kerolox architecture with an eye to reducing operating costs. Now NASA is going off alone again with a HLV that most likely will have no other customer.

If that potential synergy was the reason for delaying HLV development, it sure wasn't well stated in the FY2011 rollout!

Quote
A failure to produce a working launch system, or the production of a launcher with a failure rate approaching that of the Shuttle will call the entire NASA HSF program into question.

Assuming we count both catastrophic failures against the launch vehicle, does that not still give STS one of the highest overall reliability rates of any launcher, with 2 failures in 132 flights? 

 
Quote
Success moving forward is vital; we can't afford another VentureStar or Ares 1. I'm keeping my fingers crossed, and hope we can find the money for fuel depots and that kerolox engine just in case the Arsenal system fails once again.

It's do or die time for sure - SDHLV has a golden opportunity here, but it's gotta work!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: edkyle99 on 07/16/2010 03:36 AM
Whether you love the plan, hate it, or don't have a strong opinion one way or the other, there is no denying that Sen. Nelson stood up, when no one else would, and *led* on the U.S. human spaceflight issue. 

The White House didn't seem to understand the realities of the problem.  The President decided only to stop NASA's existing program, leaving the future adrift.  Bolden was all over the place.  Garver I don't even want to talk about.   

Sen. Nelson stepped forward and *decided*, and then figured out how to make it happen.  The plan may not be perfect, or even close to perfect, but at least it sets something useful in motion.  It preserves, or provides the opportunity to preserve, important national capabilities. 

Obama's plan left the U.S. with less human space capability than Russia and China and only ISS for a near-term destination. 

Sen. Nelson has aimed NASA on a new course.  No more pussyfooting around.  The destination is deep space.

 - Ed Kyle
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/16/2010 03:42 AM
Good post Ed, concur - along with Hutchison and Vitter. And for what it's worth as a non-American, I've been really impressed by the bi-partizan attitude with these lawmakers.

I think it would be a cold day in hell before we could come close to citing a similar example in England, I'll say that much.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/16/2010 03:43 AM
Ed, you nailed it as you so often do.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 03:43 AM
Whether you love the plan, hate it, or don't have a strong opinion one way or the other, there is no denying that Sen. Nelson stood up, when no one else would, and *led* on the U.S. human spaceflight issue. 

The White House didn't seem to understand the realities of the problem.  The President decided only to stop NASA's existing program, leaving the future adrift.  Bolden was all over the place.  Garver I don't even want to talk about.   

Sen. Nelson stepped forward and *decided*, and then figured out how to make it happen.  The plan may not be perfect, or even close to perfect, but at least it sets something useful in motion.  It preserves, or provides the opportunity to preserve, important national capabilities. 

Obama's plan left the U.S. with less human space capability than Russia and China and only ISS for a near-term destination. 

Sen. Nelson has aimed NASA on a new course.  No more pussyfooting around.  The destination is deep space.

 - Ed Kyle

Nelson and Hutchison. Remember that Hutchison's bill started all of this. They needed bi-partisan support for this bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/16/2010 04:25 AM
Both jongoff and NOofC mentioned something, and it does deserve some discussion: a system was rewarded today (some refer to it as the Arsenal system) that hasn't successfully completed a HSF system since the Shuttle. Rewarding failure strikes many as a recipe for continued failure, especially when the alternative was to join hands with the Air Force and commercial space to build a new, exciting kerolox architecture with an eye to reducing operating costs. Now NASA is going off alone again with a HLV that most likely will have no other customer.
If that potential synergy was the reason for delaying HLV development, it sure wasn't well stated in the FY2011 rollout!

I believe the synergy of kerolox development with the Air Force and SpaceX/ULA was pretty well understood, at least as well as anything can be that's ten years in the future.

A failure to produce a working launch system, or the production of a launcher with a failure rate approaching that of the Shuttle will call the entire NASA HSF program into question.
Assuming we count both catastrophic failures against the launch vehicle, does that not still give STS one of the highest overall reliability rates of any launcher, with 2 failures in 132 flights? 

I think it's quite fair to assign blame for both shuttle mishaps (SRM leak, LH2 tank foam shedding) on the launch vehicle. I would consider a failure rate of 1.5% for any SDHLV to be grounds to say that its choice was a mistake. Atlas V and Delta IV both already have flawless records to date; if the SDHLV record is not equally flawless, then I also think it's fair to say the political process failed all Americans today.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: CessnaDriver on 07/16/2010 04:54 AM


Bottom line for me.
Some of the machines necessary for getting us back to the moon are going to be built.
Obama failed to kill Orion in BEO form. We leapfrog to heavy lift over Ares I.
I don't care what form heavy lift comes in. As long as it will exist.
We don't lose a bunch of time thinking about it, NASA will build rockets and spacecraft to get us into the solar system.

Next admin will have the option to do an Apollo 8 style mission this decade and start building landers. The launcher to get the landers up there will exist.

The argument for moon is going to only grow. We learn more and more about water there, and we will have a vehicle that can orbit her.

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kraisee on 07/16/2010 04:58 AM
I think its actually quite sad that Obama didn't come in and make this happen ~18 months ago.   If he had, he would have potentially gotten his Apollo 8 style mission before the end of his first term, and an injection of national pride (one of the things NASA excels at)  can do wonders for floundering incumbents at re-election time.

This was a very badly squandered opportunity for his administration, IMHO.   At least Congress is still going to make it happen.

Ross.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: edkyle99 on 07/16/2010 04:58 AM
I think it's quite fair to assign blame for both shuttle mishaps (SRM leak, LH2 tank foam shedding) on the launch vehicle. I would consider a failure rate of 1.5% for any SDHLV to be grounds to say that its choice was a mistake. Atlas V and Delta IV both already have flawless records to date; if the SDHLV record is not equally flawless, then I also think it's fair to say the political process failed all Americans today.

If you think 1.5% is an unacceptable failure rate, then you must believe that no launch vehicle in existence today is safe enough.  The very best rockets do no better than a 2% predicted failure probability given the bounds of statistical uncertainty.  Delta 4 and Atlas 5 were *designed* to a 2% failure rate requirement.

Atlas 5 and Delta 4 each have suffered one launch vehicle failure (in 21 and 13 attempts, respectively) that resulted in premature engine shutdowns and incorrect orbits.  Shuttle has, in 132 launches, suffered two catastrophic failures and one premature engine shutdown that resulted in an incorrect orbit.

These results rank all three vehicles among the nine most reliable active launch vehicle families in the world today, all of which possess expected reliabilities in excess of 90%.   The nine are Delta 2, R-7/Soyuz, STS, Long March, Kosmos 3M, Ariane 5, Proton, Atlas 5, and Delta 4. 

 - Ed Kyle
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/16/2010 05:04 AM
Jimgagnon, it's definitely nothing like keeping Ares I/V going the direction they were headed. I will admit that it's not the worst thing that Congress has ever done, not by a long shot. There's still money in there for commercial crew and I really, really hope more tech funding gets restored, and if the DIRECT team's plan is basically copied by NASA, then one of the best ways of developing an HLV quickly using Shuttle parts and keeping LC-39 will have prevailed. While I still believe the future lies with non-NASA launch vehicles, this will be helpful to some people out there whose jobs may be saved at least for a little while, which is definitely a good thing for them.

Still, no timetable for exploration and no lander. But at least Ares I looks to finally be dead and something more rational, if still expensive, is on the table. STS-135 makes some sense, hopefully it is put to good use.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rcoppola on 07/16/2010 05:32 AM
Good post Ed, concur - along with Hutchison and Vitter. And for what it's worth as a non-American, I've been really impressed by the bi-partizan attitude with these lawmakers.

I think it would be a cold day in hell before we could come close to citing a similar example in England, I'll say that much.

You're an honorary American as far as I'm concerned.
Now if we could get our political brethren in the UK to join us for some BEO planning once they pass their austerity measures, we could have some real fun...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Danderman on 07/16/2010 05:43 AM
I think its actually quite sad that Obama didn't come in and make this happen ~18 months ago.   If he had, he would have potentially gotten his Apollo 8 style mission before the end of his first term, and an injection of national pride (one of the things NASA excels at)  can do wonders for floundering incumbents at re-election time.

This was a very badly squandered opportunity for his administration, IMHO.   At least Congress is still going to make it happen.

Ross.

Obama was a bit busy 18 months ago, what with the pending collapse of the economic system and all that.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/16/2010 05:46 AM
If you think 1.5% is an unacceptable failure rate, then you must believe that no launch vehicle in existence today is safe enough.  The very best rockets do no better than a 2% predicted failure probability given the bounds of statistical uncertainty.  Delta 4 and Atlas 5 were *designed* to a 2% failure rate requirement.

Atlas 5 and Delta 4 each have suffered one launch vehicle failure (in 21 and 13 attempts, respectively) that resulted in premature engine shutdowns and incorrect orbits.  Shuttle has, in 132 launches, suffered two catastrophic failures and one premature engine shutdown that resulted in an incorrect orbit.

I believe the Atlas V failure you speak of was actually a third stage Centaur failure that the satellite itself corrected over time. The Atlas V itself has performed flawlessly. As far as the Delta IV, the only failure I know of is the shakedown launch of the Delta IV heavy that had a premature engine shutdown and left the DemoSat in an incorrect orbit. It's been fine ever since.

If we had an orbital tug capability in place, incorrect orbits could be corrected. It's part of developing a robust orbital infrastructure. It's unclear to me if the compromise reached today retains the funding for that capability.

Saturn IB and Saturn V had perfect launch records of achieving an useful orbit. They may be special cases, but I do believe that the Atlas V and Delta IV records aren't; they're a product of what Boeing and LM went through with the Atlas III and Delta III -- those launchers had less than desirable characteristics. From what I understand, the Air Force sat down with ULA to refine both designs and procedures to come up with the very successful launchers they have today.

It remains to be seen if the Arsenal system can do the same with anything Shuttle-derived. My heart sinks when I see cockamamie designs as sidemount and side engine pods; those designs would be a redux of Ares 1 (thank god the stick is dead). At any rate, NASA will get its chance, but they'll be doing it alongside of SpaceX, Boeing, etc. Should the private companies have a better launch record than NASA, then you can be sure we'll visit the question again of whether NASA should be in the launch business in the first place.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Danderman on 07/16/2010 05:46 AM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


And why are you so sure they won't....or do you really just hope they do not?  I believe it is the latter and you are just trying to make it sound like you are informed with some "insider" info. 

Again, its the Authorizers' job to make everyone happy, the Appropriators are the ones who play the heavy. That's just the way the system works.  The Authorizers get to say: "Well, we tried, but there just wasn't enough money in Appropriations for what we wanted".


Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/16/2010 06:14 AM
Whether you love the plan, hate it, or don't have a strong opinion one way or the other, there is no denying that Sen. Nelson stood up, when no one else would, and *led* on the U.S. human spaceflight issue. 

The White House didn't seem to understand the realities of the problem.  The President decided only to stop NASA's existing program, leaving the future adrift.  Bolden was all over the place.  Garver I don't even want to talk about.   

Sen. Nelson stepped forward and *decided*, and then figured out how to make it happen.  The plan may not be perfect, or even close to perfect, but at least it sets something useful in motion.  It preserves, or provides the opportunity to preserve, important national capabilities. 

Obama's plan left the U.S. with less human space capability than Russia and China and only ISS for a near-term destination. 

Sen. Nelson has aimed NASA on a new course.  No more pussyfooting around.  The destination is deep space.

 - Ed Kyle

I see it quite differently. This is a lobbyist's dream bill. The big companies get projects that don't even have to perform anything. The losers right now are the universities, the small businesses which could have profited from R&D and the economy (which gets the biggest boost from R&D spending).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 06:54 AM
Jimgagnon, it's definitely nothing like keeping Ares I/V going the direction they were headed. I will admit that it's not the worst thing that Congress has ever done, not by a long shot. There's still money in there for commercial crew and I really, really hope more tech funding gets restored, and if the DIRECT team's plan is basically copied by NASA, then one of the best ways of developing an HLV quickly using Shuttle parts and keeping LC-39 will have prevailed. While I still believe the future lies with non-NASA launch vehicles, this will be helpful to some people out there whose jobs may be saved at least for a little while, which is definitely a good thing for them.

Still, no timetable for exploration and no lander. But at least Ares I looks to finally be dead and something more rational, if still expensive, is on the table. STS-135 makes some sense, hopefully it is put to good use.

It remains to be seen if the Arsenal system can do the same with anything Shuttle-derived. My heart sinks when I see cockamamie designs as sidemount and side engine pods; those designs would be a redux of Ares 1 (thank god the stick is dead). At any rate, NASA will get its chance, but they'll be doing it alongside of SpaceX, Boeing, etc. Should the private companies have a better launch record than NASA, then you can be sure we'll visit the question again of whether NASA should be in the launch business in the first place.

I heartily agree with both of the above statements. If commercial (ULA, SpaceX, et al) has continued successes and commercial cargo/crew milestone demonstrations, and SDLV ends up going down the same route that Ares I and all the other post-Shuttle launcher projects did, it'll be quite interesting seeing what'll happen when the situation is reevaluated in one or two years. Then again, it'll also be quite interesting seeing what happens if both routes end up being successful.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: alexw on 07/16/2010 07:22 AM
Whether you love the plan, hate it, or don't have a strong opinion one way or the other, there is no denying that Sen. Nelson stood up, when no one else would, and *led* on the U.S. human spaceflight issue. 
The White House didn't seem to understand the realities of the problem.  The President decided only to stop NASA's existing program, leaving the future adrift.
    Why must "leadership" == "decide and build a heavy lifter right now"?
    Obama's plan seemed clear: kill the STS pork-industrial-complex. Something that neither Nixon, nor Ford, nor Carter (they can be partly excused on the grounds that it wasn't flying yet and thus its flaws obvious), nor Reagan, nor Bush I, nor Clinton, nor Bush were willing to do. That took guts -- it was guaranteed to be politically unpopular. You don't have to like where it was leading -- you can make the case that SDHLV is a necessary prerequisite to exploration -- but that was leadership.

Quote
Sen. Nelson stepped forward and *decided*, and then figured out how to make it happen. 
    Excellent -- Senator Nelson is a rocket designer. Shall we drive on bridges designed by Senators? Fly on airplanes designed by Senators? I appreciate that he may be genuinely trying to further the goal of exploration, but that doesn't mean he understands arithmetic.


Quote
Obama's plan left the U.S. with less human space capability than Russia and China and only ISS for a near-term destination. 
    Indeed, by 2016, we might be able to loft a $1 billion dollar Orion to ISS once a year, carrying 4 (or 6?) people compared Soyuz's 3. That'll show those Russians.
    And by the end of the decade, we'll have an upper stage that can send that $1 billion dollar Orion around the moon (or anywhere else a week's travel away). Apollo 8 Mark II -- that'll show those Chinese!
   
Quote
Sen. Nelson has aimed NASA on a new course.  No more pussyfooting around.  The destination is deep space.
     The destination is the ability to loft 100+ mT in a single lift to LEO. Actually, with the preservation of Orion, and a decade's delay of much of the technology needed for NEO missions, we may be limited in the 2020s to just going around the moon. No deep space. Hurrah hurrah.

     I really hope it goes better than that. We're taking a tremendous gamble on future budgets. In about ten years, we'll know if we get away with it.

     Sorry if I'm pessimistic. The situation is indeed better than it was on 1 January.
        -Alex
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: 2552 on 07/16/2010 07:40 AM
Reaction from Lori Garver in Houston Chronicle (http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/7110626.html):

Quote
"We think this is a great start," said Lori Garver, NASA's deputy administrator. "It accomplishes the major shifts the president set out to have for the space program."
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/16/2010 07:46 AM
Already mentioned by marsavian (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618922#msg618922).

I'm really curious whether the increase in technology development by Boxer's amendment was just symbolic.

Edit to phrase it better.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/16/2010 07:56 AM
Quote
Sen. Nelson stepped forward and *decided*, and then figured out how to make it happen. 
    Excellent -- Senator Nelson is a rocket designer. Shall we drive on bridges designed by Senators? Fly on airplanes designed by Senators? I appreciate that he may be genuinely trying to further the goal of exploration, but that doesn't mean he understands arithmetic.

It's even more frightening than that. It's not even Nelson alone designing rockets here, it's Hutchinson, Nelson, Rockefeller and Co. designing rockets! And boy, did they do it. They already decided on the way forward re kerolox or shuttle-derived. They decided side-mount vs. in-line, hey they even decided whether to use directly shuttle-derived or big, big, big rocket! And not only that, they also have apparently done trade studies on architectures, deciding 150mt evolutionary HLV paths are required!

Quote
    Indeed, by 2016, we might be able to loft a $1 billion dollar Orion to ISS once a year, carrying 4 (or 6?) people compared Soyuz's 3. That'll show those Russians.
    And by the end of the decade, we'll have an upper stage that can send that $1 billion dollar Orion around the moon (or anywhere else a week's travel away). Apollo 8 Mark II -- that'll show those Chinese!

I guarantee that a. Orion won't fly to the ISS by 2016, not at the prospected funding, not with the big problems the program has been facing, not with the program in limbo still, not with all the engineering pause they had and b. that there won't be any BEO flight by the end of the decade.

Quote
     Sorry if I'm pessimistic. The situation is indeed better than it was on 1 January.

You aren't pessimistic. Let's look at the whole thing (if that bill would pass):
1. Congress is appropriating some 11 billion dollars for Shuttle-derived inline (side-mount being out of the question) until 2016, although NASA has done studies saying it can't be done for the money, not even accounting for the infrastructure maintenance costs that would have to be added to that figure.

2. Congress is continuing Orion development, appropriating far fewer funds than projected until now for a program which is severely behind schedule and has been estimated to be conservatively ready to fly LEO flights in 2017 by the Augustine Committee IF funds are increased.

3. Congress cuts commercial crew so severely, that they can say in FY2012 or FY2013 "look, it doesn't work, haven't we told you, capitalism doesn't work!"

4. Congress cuts R&D to a bare minimum and once cost overruns with the HLV emerge will zero R&D out, just as Cx did.

5. Congress does not fund any missions, nor mission architecture, nor mission planing. There is no lunar lander, nor hab module, no in-space infrastructure, no propellant depots, no advanced propulsion, no robotic precursor missions to asteroids etc. in the plan. Why? Because, lobbyists don't like money going to smaller entities.

6. The only program that is still on solid ground now is the ISS, thankfully because Congress doesn't change a thing with regard to this program. Thankfully enough their is Soyuz to get to it until the end of this decade!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 08:44 AM
I've been reading through the bill, and my reservations with the other parts of the bill aside, I was quite intrigued by the (new?) STEM-Commercial Orbital Platform idea, which seems like a great outreach/education tool:
Quote
SEC. 1003. SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING, AND 5
MATHEMATICS COMMERCIAL ORBITAL PLAT-6
FORM PROGRAM. 7
A fundamental and unique capability of NASA is in 8
stimulating science, technology, engineering, and mathe-9
matics education in the United States. In ensuring max-10
imum use of that capability, NASA shall— 11
(1) establish a program to annually sponsor sci-12
entific and educational payloads developed with 13
United States student and educator involvement to 14
be flown on commercially available orbital platforms, 15
when available and operational, with the goal of 16
launching at least 50 such payloads (with at least 17
one from each of the 50 States) to orbit on at least 18
one mission per year; 19
(2) contract with providers of commercial or-20
bital platform services for their use by the STEM- 21
Commercial Orbital Platform program, preceded by 22
the issuance of a request for proposal, not later than 23
90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, to 24
enter into at least one funded, competitively-awarded 25
contract for commercial orbital platform services and 1
make awards within 180 days after such date; and 2
(3) engage with United States students and 3
educators and make available NASA’s science, engi-4
neering, payload development, and payload oper-5
ations expertise to student teams selected to partici-6
pate in the STEM-Commercial Orbital Platform pro-7
gram.

It'd be fascinating to have NASA purchasing space on something like a DragonLab for launching students' science experiments every year (one small experiment from each state). I don't think I've ever heard of this idea before, but I like it.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/16/2010 09:10 AM
http://thehill.com/blogs/hillicon-valley/technology/109181-commerce-committee-approves-nasa-compromise

The White House expressed support for the reauthorization bill, which contains many of the cuts to the Constellation program that President Obama advocated but stops short of completely eliminating NASA's space shuttle program.

“The bill contains the critical elements necessary for achieving the President's vision for NASA, it recognizes that Constellation is no longer the right program for achieving our boldest ambitions, it helps launch a commercial space transportation industry, it embraces the President’s proposal for an additional $6 billion for NASA, it extends the International Space Station and it represents an important first step towards helping us achieve the key goals the President laid out,” said White House spokesman Nick Shapiro.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/16/2010 12:38 PM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


And why are you so sure they won't....or do you really just hope they do not?  I believe it is the latter and you are just trying to make it sound like you are informed with some "insider" info. 

Again, its the Authorizers' job to make everyone happy, the Appropriators are the ones who play the heavy. That's just the way the system works.  The Authorizers get to say: "Well, we tried, but there just wasn't enough money in Appropriations for what we wanted".




Yes, I'm quite familar with the way the system works but that's not what I said. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: JosephB on 07/16/2010 12:43 PM
Promise everything to everybody...


at least 'till the November election.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: strangequark on 07/16/2010 01:30 PM

I think it's quite fair to assign blame for both shuttle mishaps (SRM leak, LH2 tank foam shedding) on the launch vehicle. I would consider a failure rate of 1.5% for any SDHLV to be grounds to say that its choice was a mistake. Atlas V and Delta IV both already have flawless records to date; if the SDHLV record is not equally flawless, then I also think it's fair to say the political process failed all Americans today.

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight. Atlas V is on it's 21st. I'm not saying that Atlas V isn't a great rocket. However, it doesn't have nearly the same amount of flight history, unless you start looking at the whole Atlas family, and then you have some catostrophic failures you have to count.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/16/2010 01:44 PM
Thank you Chris Bergin.

What did I do? :D

Gave folks a website to help them come up with needed new options in the direction NASA was headed...  Amazing. Of course this won't be the last time... The power of the Internet to influence events is just beginning.

Cheers!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/16/2010 01:46 PM
Note to everyone: this is the Senate Authorization language, the House must agree, or there's no Authorization. Also, even if this is enacted into law, the people who write the checks, the Appropriations folks, must also agree - and its sure that they won't. Authorization's job is to make people happy, Appropriations' job is to get things actually running.


And why are you so sure they won't....or do you really just hope they do not?  I believe it is the latter and you are just trying to make it sound like you are informed with some "insider" info. 

Again, its the Authorizers' job to make everyone happy, the Appropriators are the ones who play the heavy. That's just the way the system works.  The Authorizers get to say: "Well, we tried, but there just wasn't enough money in Appropriations for what we wanted".




No, actually Appropriations has already agreed to the $19B top-line number for NASA in FY2011.  And they specifically stated that no money could be spend on HSF until Authorizations came to agreement on the path forward.  In other words, the money is there, a compromise has now been reached, and Appropriations is not going to repeat all of the gritty painful work that Authorizations already did.

And the Authorizations committee members stated quite plainly that they have been working closely with Appropriations members so that there are no major impediments to approval by that committee.  Sure, Sen. Shelby may throw some language in to really lock NASA into favoring MSFC over JSC or KSC, but he is not going to upset the whole apple cart.

I'm happy to say that this looks like a done deal. Even Lori Garver came out gushing over the bill.  Looking forward to the day that Pres. Obama signs the NASA Authorization Act of 2010 into law!

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/16/2010 01:56 PM

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight.

No, 51-F is a 'failure"  It did not achieve the proper orbit
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Orbiter on 07/16/2010 02:01 PM

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight.

No, 51-F is a 'failure"  It did not achieve the proper orbit

They were still able to carry out nominal mission objectives. Same with Apollo 13's launch (until Apollo 13 suffered a explosion in the SM a few days later of course)

Orbiter
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/16/2010 02:05 PM
I think its actually quite sad that Obama didn't come in and make this happen ~18 months ago.   If he had, he would have potentially gotten his Apollo 8 style mission before the end of his first term, and an injection of national pride (one of the things NASA excels at)  can do wonders for floundering incumbents at re-election time.

This was a very badly squandered opportunity for his administration, IMHO.   At least Congress is still going to make it happen.

Ross.


Ross, you hit the nail on the head.

If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

Cheers!

 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 02:13 PM
I think its actually quite sad that Obama didn't come in and make this happen ~18 months ago.   If he had, he would have potentially gotten his Apollo 8 style mission before the end of his first term, and an injection of national pride (one of the things NASA excels at)  can do wonders for floundering incumbents at re-election time.

This was a very badly squandered opportunity for his administration, IMHO.   At least Congress is still going to make it happen.

Ross.

I disagree. This couldn't have hapenned 18 months ago. You are merely focusing on Orion and the SD-HLV. But a lot of this bill contains the principles of the FY2011 Budget and of the Augustine Committee's report. This is a compromise and at the beginning of this process, Congress was in no mood to compromise and wanted to maintain Constellation as it was (with Ares I, etc.). Remember how Augustine was greeted by Congress after he issued his report. As painful as this may have been for some, this process was necessary.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kirghizstan on 07/16/2010 02:17 PM
I think its actually quite sad that Obama didn't come in and make this happen ~18 months ago.   If he had, he would have potentially gotten his Apollo 8 style mission before the end of his first term, and an injection of national pride (one of the things NASA excels at)  can do wonders for floundering incumbents at re-election time.

This was a very badly squandered opportunity for his administration, IMHO.   At least Congress is still going to make it happen.

Ross.

I disagree with you. You are merely focusing on Orion and the SD-HLV. But a lot of this bill contains the principles of the FY2011 Budget and of the Augustine Comittee's report. This is a compromise and at the beginning Congress was in no mood to compromise and wanted to maintain Constealltion as it was (with Ares I, etc.). Remember how Augustine was greeted by Congress after he issued his report. As painful as they may have been for some, this process was necessary.

completely agree, with out obama's initial proposal, none of this would have happened.  congress would have stuck with Ares.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/16/2010 02:20 PM

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight.

No, 51-F is a 'failure"  It did not achieve the proper orbit

They were still able to carry out nominal mission objectives. Same with Apollo 13's launch (until Apollo 13 suffered a explosion in the SM a few days later of course)

Orbiter

The explosion in the SM was partially caused by POGO problems of the Saturn V.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Danderman on 07/16/2010 02:22 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 02:33 PM
Already mentioned by marsavian (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618922#msg618922).

I'm really curious whether the increase in technology development by Boxer's amendment was just symbolic.

Edit to phrase it better.

According to 51D Mascot, the amendments were not significant. In other words, some funding was likely added to technology but not a lot. That explains why Senator Boxer said that she will be pushing for more.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22163.msg618865#msg618865
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: gladiator1332 on 07/16/2010 02:35 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.

I really wouldn't describe the introduction of FY2011 as a "great job". It was a big shock and literally came out of nowhere for most people. When asked for details there were a lot of "I don't knows, and We'll get back to you's".

If Obama's plan all along was to shock congress into making a compromise, then he did a good job. But I honestly think he was hoping for FY2011 to pass un-altered. But once he heard the opposition, he felt it was not worth fighting over.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/16/2010 02:37 PM
That explains why Senator Boxer said that she will be pushing for more.

I thought she said that about the commercial amendment? Guess we'll have to wait and see.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/16/2010 02:38 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.


Wow!

OK. If you want to believe in the Tooth Fairy, it is your right to do so.

Calling a crash and burn proposal "negotiating with Congress" is a bit of a stretch.


I think its actually quite sad that Obama didn't come in and make this happen ~18 months ago.   If he had, he would have potentially gotten his Apollo 8 style mission before the end of his first term, and an injection of national pride (one of the things NASA excels at)  can do wonders for floundering incumbents at re-election time.

This was a very badly squandered opportunity for his administration, IMHO.   At least Congress is still going to make it happen.

Ross.


Ross is right. We didn't need to go down this road.

Cheers!

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/16/2010 02:40 PM

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight.

No, 51-F is a 'failure"  It did not achieve the proper orbit

They were still able to carry out nominal mission objectives. Same with Apollo 13's launch (until Apollo 13 suffered a explosion in the SM a few days later of course)

Orbiter

The explosion in the SM was partially caused by POGO problems of the Saturn V.
Those were separate incidents.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DigitalMan on 07/16/2010 02:43 PM
I heartily agree with both of the above statements. If commercial (ULA, SpaceX, et al) has continued successes and commercial cargo/crew milestone demonstrations, and SDLV ends up going down the same route that Ares I and all the other post-Shuttle launcher projects did, it'll be quite interesting seeing what'll happen when the situation is reevaluated in one or two years. Then again, it'll also be quite interesting seeing what happens if both routes end up being successful.

There will be limited progress on commercial crew since there the bill places  restrictions on what NASA can do before 2012.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 02:44 PM
That explains why Senator Boxer said that she will be pushing for more.

I thought she said that about the commercial amendment? Guess we'll have to wait and see.

Yes you are right. Nevertheless, she must have accepted less than what she originally asked.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618459#msg618459
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DigitalMan on 07/16/2010 02:48 PM
Already mentioned by marsavian (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618922#msg618922).

I'm really curious whether the increase in technology development by Boxer's amendment was just symbolic.

Edit to phrase it better.

Looking at the numbers, yes, it was symbolic.  The long list of developments and launches are gone.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/16/2010 02:48 PM

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight.

No, 51-F is a 'failure"  It did not achieve the proper orbit

They were still able to carry out nominal mission objectives.


Mission completion is the proper measure, otherwise anytime we have an IFA we would have to classify the "flight" as a "failure"
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: tminus9 on 07/16/2010 02:54 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.

Wow!

OK. If you want to believe in the Tooth Fairy, it is your right to do so.

Calling a crash and burn proposal "negotiating with Congress" is a bit of a stretch.

This is ridiculous. While nobody outside of the process knows the true motives (and that hasn't stopped many here from speculating), this is how negotiation works. One side decides (privately) what they're willing to accept, then proposes more. Everyone can do their public grandstanding, and then each side gives in to reach a compromise.

The President's job is to work with Congress to get things done. That's what he did here. No solution is perfect for anyone, but that comes with governing.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 02:57 PM
Already mentioned by marsavian (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618922#msg618922).

I'm really curious whether the increase in technology development by Boxer's amendment was just symbolic.

Edit to phrase it better.

Looking at the numbers, yes, it was symbolic.  The long list of developments and launches are gone.

What numbers? We are still waiting for the new numbers.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/16/2010 02:58 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.

I really wouldn't describe the introduction of FY2011 as a "great job". It was a big shock and literally came out of nowhere for most people. When asked for details there were a lot of "I don't knows, and We'll get back to you's".

If Obama's plan all along was to shock congress into making a compromise, then he did a good job. But I honestly think he was hoping for FY2011 to pass un-altered. But once he heard the opposition, he felt it was not worth fighting over.

This is more in line with my thoughts.

Obama clearly knew of the issues & infighting at NASA, and was probably hoping to stir things up. Did he fully expect to get his way in the end with FY2011? I doubt it, but he clearly indicated things were broken and needed to change. Just look at the mess CxP was in: Ares I was a disaster, with Ares V following suit because of it. We have documents from JSC & MSFC with opposing views, and in some respects (being kind) tipping the scales due to favouritism.

As to this not being able to be accomplished during the financial crisis...that's just baloney. Yes, there were tremendous pressures to get the economy back on track, but this was a part of it as well. Look at the job losses to date. Do they not count? As President, there is a multi-role function, and if you can't handle the pressure, you don't belong in the chair. I think the President half-flubbed this. I think he fully expected a compromise, but the handling was poor (especially for something high on the list of requiring action from his administration), and we have an agency that appears to be ina shambles (from my POV).

I do give Nelson a good bit of credit, but he was not alone. The Hutchison Bill was very well crafted and had a lot going for it. What we have now is a reasonable compromise, though I too agree far from perfect. It's a good compromise. We still need commercial to carry the baton in many roles, and this Bill, imo, does fall short of that. I 'hope' that the funding discrepancy does translate into additional funds above the initial amount.

The proof as to how well this works will come in the months and years ahead: one is as to how the ISS fairs, for it is the one that could suffer the greatest due to inaction; and the second is the aerospace industry, which is already being battered by job losses and a sour economy. As to R&D and its jobs: those don't exist yet, so it isn't as critical, but starting on a sustained funding plan in the years ahead, developing required capabilities, not just working on senseless projects, should bolster the industry as the needs arise.

I'm cautiously optimistic. I just hope some ISS parts & science get funded and quick.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: edkyle99 on 07/16/2010 03:11 PM
I believe the Atlas V failure you speak of was actually a third stage Centaur failure that the satellite itself corrected over time. The Atlas V itself has performed flawlessly.

Centaur is the second stage - and an integral part - of the Atlas 5 launch vehicle.  On the AV-009 mission, liquid hydrogen leaked through a valve that failed to close properly during the Centaur coast phase, leading to a propellant shortage that caused the RL10 engine to shut down several seconds early during its second burn.  This was a launch vehicle failure.  The NROL-30R satellites (more than one) reportedly made up the delta-v shortfall, but the effort likely reduces operational life by some amount.

You mentioned Saturn 5 as an example of flawlessness, but SA-502 (Apollo 6) suffered a substantial launch vehicle failure.  It lost two second stage engines during ascent - a problem that almost caused a catastrophic loss of the vehicle.  Later, the third stage engine failed to restart as planned, leaving itself stranded in LEO.  Apollo 6 performed its own burns to execute a backup mission, but the spacecraft was unable to reach the originally planned orbit and velocities.

Saturn I/IB never failed outright, but the first Saturn IB launched from LC-39B came within a fraction of a second of shutting down at T-0, due to a previously unknown timing issue that manifested itself on the new platform.  The rocket very nearly faltered, which would have caused it to blow up on its launch platform on live TV.  Crew survival odds were  iffy for that scenario.

 - Ed Kyle
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: edkyle99 on 07/16/2010 03:26 PM
    Why must "leadership" == "decide and build a heavy lifter right now"?
    Obama's plan seemed clear: kill the STS pork-industrial-complex. Something that neither Nixon, nor Ford, nor Carter (they can be partly excused on the grounds that it wasn't flying yet and thus its flaws obvious), nor Reagan, nor Bush I, nor Clinton, nor Bush were willing to do. That took guts -- it was guaranteed to be politically unpopular. You don't have to like where it was leading -- you can make the case that SDHLV is a necessary prerequisite to exploration -- but that was leadership.
"SDHLV" isn't necessary, but "HLV" is.  The only "HLV" alternatives to "SD" were on paper.  I personally liked the kerosene rocket idea - it would cost less to operate - but it would also cost a lot more to develop than "SD" and would take longer to develop. 

"SD" is not just politically expedient.  It makes common sense - if it is done right.

Quote
    Excellent -- Senator Nelson is a rocket designer. Shall we drive on bridges designed by Senators? Fly on airplanes designed by Senators? I appreciate that he may be genuinely trying to further the goal of exploration, but that doesn't mean he understands arithmetic.

The Senator is not making design choices, he is laying groundwork.  But Sen. Nelson does have a better big picture feel for the problem than any other politician.  He orbited the planet on board Columbia, just a few weeks before 51L.  I suspect that actually being strapped in to ride that wild horse to orbit provides some valuable perspective.
Quote
    Indeed, by 2016, we might be able to loft a $1 billion dollar Orion to ISS once a year, carrying 4 (or 6?) people compared Soyuz's 3. That'll show those Russians.
    And by the end of the decade, we'll have an upper stage that can send that $1 billion dollar Orion around the moon (or anywhere else a week's travel away). Apollo 8 Mark II -- that'll show those Chinese!

NASA currently launches multiple $1 billion-plus Shuttle missions to ISS every year.  This game isn't free.
 
 - Ed Kyle
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 03:27 PM
Already mentioned by marsavian (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22270.msg618922#msg618922).

I'm really curious whether the increase in technology development by Boxer's amendment was just symbolic.

Edit to phrase it better.

Looking at the numbers, yes, it was symbolic.  The long list of developments and launches are gone.

What numbers? We are still waiting for the new numbers.

OK, some of the numbers appear on page 2 of this article:

http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20100716/NEWS02/7160322/1086/Senators+realign+NASA+s+direction
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/16/2010 03:28 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.

If you could be specific about the "negotiating" you're referring to, I'd REALLY be interested in hearing about that.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 03:31 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.

If you could be specific about the "negotiating" you're referring to, I'd REALLY be interested in hearing about that.

You would know a lot more about this. But it's obvious that Nelson and others were trying to put as much of the FY2011 NASA Budget as possible in this compromise bill. So that it would be acceptable to the President.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/16/2010 03:34 PM
As to R&D and its jobs: those don't exist yet, so it isn't as critical,

It's not about the jobs, it's about the potential return on the investment. You know, the thing space advocates beat themselves in the chest over? Saying how vital the space program is to driving technology etc.

Quote
but starting on a sustained funding plan in the years ahead, developing required capabilities,

We'll see if that will happen, or if whatever's allocated to R&D won't end up being used as a slush fund should something go awry.

Quote
not just working on senseless projects, should bolster the industry as the needs arise.

The primary mission of a R&D program should be developing a specific technology. There is no guaranteed benefit to the industry. What exactly in the proposed FTDs is "senseless"? That they don't require a BFR to demonstrate a concept? Also I don't see who decides when "the need arises". If it's the people that are happy with the status quo, don't expect progress.

I don't know why I even bother. It's not like R&D has mattered to NASA or many in the "space community" since the 80s. Now the big deal is the launchers, not so much what flies on them (unless it's a tin can with a human in it).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/16/2010 03:50 PM
I don't know why I even bother. It's not like R&D has mattered to NASA or many in the "space community" since the 80s. Now the big deal is the launchers, not so much what flies on them (unless it's a tin can with a human in it).

You're looking in the wrong direction. The other half of the space community (unmanned) regularly does lots of R&D, the best of which trickles down to the manned program. Since nobody get killed if the tech doesn't work, and since nearly every unmanned NASA spacecraft is a one-off, this just works better. And that's why there is a relatively enormous SEP rocket on its way to Vesta and later Ceres, a spacecraft around the Moon demonstrating a multiple TB/day comm link on DSN, and rover to be launched next year that will be the largest demonstration of Mars EDL to date.

So yes, NASA has plenty of R&D. It just doesn't need a redundant program on the manned side...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/16/2010 03:53 PM
Eric Berger with the Houston Chronicle posted about a short interview he did with Lori Garver last night:
http://blogs.chron.com/sciguy/archives/2010/07/post_163.html

Interestingly, I think her comments could still be interpreted in different ways.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Downix on 07/16/2010 03:55 PM

I think it's quite fair to assign blame for both shuttle mishaps (SRM leak, LH2 tank foam shedding) on the launch vehicle. I would consider a failure rate of 1.5% for any SDHLV to be grounds to say that its choice was a mistake. Atlas V and Delta IV both already have flawless records to date; if the SDHLV record is not equally flawless, then I also think it's fair to say the political process failed all Americans today.

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight. Atlas V is on it's 21st. I'm not saying that Atlas V isn't a great rocket. However, it doesn't have nearly the same amount of flight history, unless you start looking at the whole Atlas family, and then you have some catostrophic failures you have to count.
Incorrect.  The flaw from the 25th flight was already demonstrated by the 2nd.   It just happened to have an o ring failure away from the ET on STS-2.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 04:00 PM
Eric Berger with the Houston Chronicle posted about a short interview he did with Lori Garver last night:
http://blogs.chron.com/sciguy/archives/2010/07/post_163.html

Interestingly, I think her comments could still be interpreted in different ways.

Interesting interview. She seems very supportive. It would be interesting to get Bolden's comments as well.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cog_in_the_machine on 07/16/2010 04:03 PM
You're looking the wrong direction. The other half of the space community (unmanned) regularly does lots of R&D, the best of which trickles down to the manned program. Since nobody get killed if the tech doesn't work, and since nearly every unmanned NASA spacecraft is a one-off, this just works better. And that's why there is a relatively enormous SEP rocket on its way to Vesta and later Ceres, a spacecraft around the Moon demonstrating a multiple TB/day comm link on DSN, and rover to be launched next year that will be the largest demonstration of Mars EDL to date.

So yes, NASA has plenty of R&D. It just doesn't need a redundant program on the manned side...

"Plenty of R&D" for stuff involving unmanned missions. Flying humans is a bit trickier and research to make it easier would be nice, perhaps even critical if "we're going to become a space fairing species" like the standard mantra that echoes among spaceflight supporters says. I'm not solely a unmanned supporter and some tech development intended specifically to benefit HSF in the long run would be nice, if it manages to survive long enough. That's what bothers me.
Don't take my post as meaning "it's the end of R&D". I'm merely pointing out that the launchers seem to garner a lot of attention and I'm not talking only about the government ones, same goes for "commercial".
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/16/2010 04:05 PM
Quote
    Excellent -- Senator Nelson is a rocket designer. Shall we drive on bridges designed by Senators? Fly on airplanes designed by Senators? I appreciate that he may be genuinely trying to further the goal of exploration, but that doesn't mean he understands arithmetic.

The Senator is not making design choices, he is laying groundwork.  But Sen. Nelson does have a better big picture feel for the problem than any other politician.  He orbited the planet on board Columbia, just a few weeks before 51L.  I suspect that actually being strapped in to ride that wild horse to orbit provides some valuable perspective.

NASA has produced enough reports that I think you could fairly say he's choosing between options presented to him.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/16/2010 04:05 PM

I think it's quite fair to assign blame for both shuttle mishaps (SRM leak, LH2 tank foam shedding) on the launch vehicle. I would consider a failure rate of 1.5% for any SDHLV to be grounds to say that its choice was a mistake. Atlas V and Delta IV both already have flawless records to date; if the SDHLV record is not equally flawless, then I also think it's fair to say the political process failed all Americans today.

"To date" being the key words. STS had a flawless record up to it's 25th flight. Atlas V is on it's 21st. I'm not saying that Atlas V isn't a great rocket. However, it doesn't have nearly the same amount of flight history, unless you start looking at the whole Atlas family, and then you have some catostrophic failures you have to count.
Incorrect.  The flaw from the 25th flight was already demonstrated by the 2nd.   It just happened to have an o ring failure away from the ET on STS-2.
The issues with the case-to-case field joints and the case-to-nozzle joints were demonstrated before 51-L, but none of them failed to seal until then.  The event on STS-2 would not have been catastrophic in a different location on the circumference.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/16/2010 04:06 PM
I don't know why I even bother. It's not like R&D has mattered to NASA or many in the "space community" since the 80s. Now the big deal is the launchers, not so much what flies on them (unless it's a tin can with a human in it).

You're looking in the wrong direction. The other half of the space community (unmanned) regularly does lots of R&D, the best of which trickles down to the manned program. Since nobody get killed if the tech doesn't work, and since nearly every unmanned NASA spacecraft is a one-off, this just works better. And that's why there is a relatively enormous SEP rocket on its way to Vesta and later Ceres, a spacecraft around the Moon demonstrating a multiple TB/day comm link on DSN, and rover to be launched next year that will be the largest demonstration of Mars EDL to date.

So yes, NASA has plenty of R&D. It just doesn't need a redundant program on the manned side...
And how much exploration has the manned part of NASA done since stopping R&D (which you seem to imply)?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/16/2010 04:07 PM
If President Obama is wise he'll soon hire some smarter political spinners that have much better connections to Congress and the public.

Most Americans want their President to be quite successful. It takes some really strange political advice to the President to create this kind of mess and need Congress to step in and fix it.

On the contrary, the President's team did a great job of putting out a proposal and negotiating with Congress to make as many people as possible happy.

If you could be specific about the "negotiating" you're referring to, I'd REALLY be interested in hearing about that.

You would know a lot more about this. But it's obvious that Nelson and others were trying to put as much of the FY2011 NASA Budget as possible in this compromise bill. So that it would be acceptable to the President.

Sure, but that's a VERY different thing than suggesting the White House was actively involved in "negotiations," however.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: gladiator1332 on 07/16/2010 04:12 PM
Eric Berger with the Houston Chronicle posted about a short interview he did with Lori Garver last night:
http://blogs.chron.com/sciguy/archives/2010/07/post_163.html

Interestingly, I think her comments could still be interpreted in different ways.


Interesting article. Just speculating here...but many have said she was the main supporter of FY2011. Now she seems somewhat supportive of the compromise. Is there any possibility she is supporting this compromise in order to become admin at some point?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/16/2010 04:21 PM
Eric Berger with the Houston Chronicle posted about a short interview he did with Lori Garver last night:
http://blogs.chron.com/sciguy/archives/2010/07/post_163.html
Interestingly, I think her comments could still be interpreted in different ways.
Interesting article. Just speculating here...but many have said she was the main supporter of FY2011. Now she seems somewhat supportive of the compromise. Is there any possibility she is supporting this compromise in order to become admin at some point?

If I were to venture a guess, I would say her stance is more of a reflection that the process is hardly over, and that also this is the first budget that the Bolden/Garver team has submitted to Congress. They undoubtedly learned a lot about Congress, NASA and the various factions involved in HSF.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/16/2010 05:41 PM
Eric Berger with the Houston Chronicle posted about a short interview he did with Lori Garver last night:
http://blogs.chron.com/sciguy/archives/2010/07/post_163.html
Interestingly, I think her comments could still be interpreted in different ways.
Interesting article. Just speculating here...but many have said she was the main supporter of FY2011. Now she seems somewhat supportive of the compromise. Is there any possibility she is supporting this compromise in order to become admin at some point?

If I were to venture a guess, I would say her stance is more of a reflection that the process is hardly over, and that also this is the first budget that the Bolden/Garver team has submitted to Congress. They undoubtedly learned a lot about Congress, NASA and the various factions involved in HSF.
Yes Jim. Key phrases to focus on
Quote
We really feel that the bill preserves those most important parts of the President's budget in pivoting to a realignment of the program to the 21st century. So just the rocket itself we feel is a piece that takes advantage of the commercial crew aspects that allows us to reduce the space transportation costs for astronauts. We also are investing in the 21st century launch which should reduce our infrastructure costs. All of that will teach us, and we have to learn it quickly, how to do things differently so that we can have this budget be a doable thing.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 06:03 PM
(moved from the DIRECT thread)


While we are all still waiting for the dust to settle from these momentous events, there are a couple of points I'm hoping to get some clarification on.
...
3. We get the flexible path Moon, NEOs and Mars as destinations. As someone who is a strong supporter of a return to the Moon, how likely are we to see that, as SLS's first destination and, before the end of the decade. Assuming the Atlas/Jupiter launch configuration is Centaur has been mentioned as being used in conjunction with Orion - would that lead to an LOR mission mode assuming no fuel depot with reusable lander?

To be blunt with DIRECT's victory essentially assured, I WANT THE MOON AS ITS TARGET.

If I understand the bill correctly, the National Academies will conduct a study in FY2012 to answer the questions of long-term goals, architecture, and destinations. I actually think this a responsible approach, as we'll have a better idea of how SDLV development, limited technology development, and commercial crew are progressing at that time and be able to make better decisions/assessments accordingly:


http://blogs.chron.com/sciguy/archives/NASA%20Rockefeller1.pdf
Quote
SEC. 204. INDEPENDENT STUDY ON HUMAN EXPLORATION OF SPACE.
(a) IN GENERAL.—In fiscal year 2012 the Administrator shall contract with the National Academies for a review of the goals, core capabilities, and direction of human space flight, using the goals set forth in the National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2005, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2008, the goals set forth in this Act, and goals set forth in any existing statement of space policy issued by the President.
(b) ELEMENTS.—The review shall include—
(1) a broad spectrum of participation with representatives of a range of disciplines, backgrounds, and generations, including civil, commercial, international, scientific, and national security interests;
(2) input from NASA’s international partner discussions and NASA’s Human Exploration Framework Team;
(3) an examination of the relationship of national goals to foundational capabilities, robotic activities, technologies, and missions authorized by this Act;
(4) a review and prioritization of scientific, engineering, economic, and social science questions to be addressed by human space exploration to improve the overall human condition; and
(5) findings and recommendations for fiscal years 2014 through 2023
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/16/2010 06:24 PM
Looks like an attempt at a second bite at the apple for the moon folks.  They direct the use of the 2005 and 2008 bills as reference goals for the NAS study.   I'm sure both include lunar language.   Probably the best the Cx huggers could get into the bill.   
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 10:07 PM
A couple months ago Norm Augustine wrote a letter stating that the White House's proposal was essentially a modified version of the Augustine Committee's option 5B: Flexible Path with commercially-derived HLV operational in early 2020s, mid-2020s mission to NEO, and later missions to Mars orbit and Moon.

If I'm correctly assessing the Senate bill, it is analogous to the Augustine Committee's SDHLV-based option 5C, with modifications to push SDHLV forward to 2016 instead of the Committee's early-2020s proposal, in exchange for sharply cutting space technology funding below the Committee's proposal of $1.5B/yr and less commercial crew funding. It also leaves open the question of specific destinations to be resolved by a FY2012 National Academies study.

Is that accurate?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jorge on 07/16/2010 10:26 PM
A couple months ago Norm Augustine wrote a letter stating that the White House's proposal was essentially a modified version of the Augustine Committee's option 5B: Flexible Path with commercially-derived HLV operational in early 2020s, mid-2020s mission to NEO, and later missions to Mars orbit and Moon.

Mostly right, the major difference being that 5B specified Orion as the BEO spacecraft, while the original WH proposal cancelled Orion (and later brought it back as a CRV). 5B also specified the "less constrained" budget.

Quote
If I'm correctly assessing the Senate bill, it is analogous to the Augustine Committee's SDHLV-based option 5C, with modifications to push SDHLV forward to 2016 instead of the Committee's early-2020s proposal, in exchange for sharply cutting space technology funding below the Committee's proposal of $1.5B/yr and less commercial crew funding. It also leaves open the question of specific destinations to be resolved by a FY2012 National Academies study.

Is that accurate?

Looks close. Augustine 5C did specify the "less constrained" budget profile; since that is apparently not happening, the technology and commercial budgets got stretched out in the Senate bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/16/2010 10:33 PM
A couple months ago Norm Augustine wrote a letter stating that the White House's proposal was essentially a modified version of the Augustine Committee's option 5B: Flexible Path with commercially-derived HLV operational in early 2020s, mid-2020s mission to NEO, and later missions to Mars orbit and Moon.

If I'm correctly assessing the Senate bill, it is analogous to the Augustine Committee's SDHLV-based option 5C, with modifications to push SDHLV forward to 2016 instead of the Committee's early-2020s proposal, in exchange for sharply cutting space technology funding below the Committee's proposal of $1.5B/yr and less commercial crew funding. It also leaves open the question of specific destinations to be resolved by a FY2012 National Academies study.

Is that accurate?

Yes but because of the lack of increase of $3B in the budget, you could also argue that it ressembles the ISS focused option on slide 18 of the Sally Ride charts:

See slide 18:
http://www.nasa.gov/ppt/378555main_02%20-%20Sally%20Charts%20v11.ppt

See also the scoring for these options here:
http://www.nasa.gov/pdf/392460main_scoring%20update_2009oct8.pdf
http://www.nasa.gov/ppt/378656main_04_-_Presentation4.ppt

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/16/2010 10:34 PM
A couple months ago Norm Augustine wrote a letter stating that the White House's proposal was essentially a modified version of the Augustine Committee's option 5B: Flexible Path with commercially-derived HLV operational in early 2020s, mid-2020s mission to NEO, and later missions to Mars orbit and Moon.

Mostly right, the major difference being that 5B specified Orion as the BEO spacecraft, while the original WH proposal cancelled Orion (and later brought it back as a CRV). 5B also specified the "less constrained" budget.

Quote
If I'm correctly assessing the Senate bill, it is analogous to the Augustine Committee's SDHLV-based option 5C, with modifications to push SDHLV forward to 2016 instead of the Committee's early-2020s proposal, in exchange for sharply cutting space technology funding below the Committee's proposal of $1.5B/yr and less commercial crew funding. It also leaves open the question of specific destinations to be resolved by a FY2012 National Academies study.

Is that accurate?

Looks close. Augustine 5C did specify the "less constrained" budget profile; since that is apparently not happening, the technology and commercial budgets got stretched out in the Senate bill.

Oh right, another key difference is that both the WH proposal and Senate bill have increases below the $3B/year proposed by the Augustine Committee.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: RyanC on 07/16/2010 11:07 PM
In the end neither the Ares or DIRECT folks will get what they want.

I strongly suspect that what we will see is a modular building block system similar to the Saturn series, with a two-stage inline rocket to put the Orion CSM into space and also have at least 60~70 tons into orbit capability with no CSM. (The Saturn INT-20/21 fell into this category)

For the 100+ tons and above growth goal; a third stage can be added, as can 4 segment or 5.5 segment SRBs (depending on how much ATK is feeling). This of course, would be a cargo only configuration.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: renclod on 07/16/2010 11:11 PM
In the press conference, Sen. Nelson said that he and Sen. Hutchinson have good friends in the White House, #1 and #2. IIRC.

Who is #2 in the WH ? The VP, Mr. Joe Biden ? Did he played any role in this matter ?

Edit: question from reporter was about the relationship with the WH, to characterize that.
Sen.Nelson said:
"Kay and I have two personal friends - they happen to be, number one and number two right now, down in the White House, ..."

Edit: IMO Sen. Nelson's personal friend, down in the WH is the #1, Pres. Obama.

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/17/2010 03:53 AM
In the press conference, Sen. Nelson said that he and Sen. Hutchinson have good friends in the White House, #1 and #2. IIRC.

Who is #2 in the WH ? The VP, Mr. Joe Biden ? Did he played any role in this matter ?

Edit: question from reporter was about the relationship with the WH, to characterize that.
Sen.Nelson said:
"Kay and I have two personal friends - they happen to be, number one and number two right now, down in the White House, ..."

Edit: IMO Sen. Nelson's personal friend, down in the WH is the #1, Pres. Obama.



Obama and Biden are both former US Senators.  Biden from 1973 until he was sworn in as VP in 2009, and Obama from 2005 until he was also sworn in, as President in 2009.

Which is #1 and which is #2 is an exercise left up to the reader...

Yes, the US Senate is a very elite club.

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Danderman on 07/17/2010 04:12 AM
Sure, but that's a VERY different thing than suggesting the White House was actively involved in "negotiations," however.

The WH would often negotiate via surrogates. Whether these surrogates are acting under instructions, or else simply independently acting in the interests of the WH is another issue.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Rabidpanda on 07/17/2010 05:01 AM
In the end neither the Ares or DIRECT folks will get what they want.

I strongly suspect that what we will see is a modular building block system similar to the Saturn series, with a two-stage inline rocket to put the Orion CSM into space and also have at least 60~70 tons into orbit capability with no CSM. (The Saturn INT-20/21 fell into this category)

For the 100+ tons and above growth goal; a third stage can be added, as can 4 segment or 5.5 segment SRBs (depending on how much ATK is feeling). This of course, would be a cargo only configuration.



What makes you think that this is a likely outcome?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: RyanC on 07/17/2010 05:54 AM
What makes you think that this is a likely outcome?

Okay; let me put my reasoning forth:

1.) Ever since Challenger and Columbia; strap-on/sidemount is out of favor for a manned launch system.

The Shuttle was only put up with since a large portion of the costs had already been sunk; and to develop a new space transportation system would have cost a lot of money and delayed "return to space" much longer.

2.) A more flexible launch system was needed than the Shuttle -- with the Shuttle; if you wanted to put a crew into space, you had to do the whole STS stack with it's attendant costs.

Constellation's architecture of Ares I and Ares V was an attempt to solve that problem -- if you wanted to put some guys into space; you didn't have to break out the HLV. It foundered on the shoals of non-modularity leading to higher costs -- the Ares I Upper stage had nothing to do with any possible use for Ares V; unless you created Ares IV.

3.) After the 30 year headache with the Shuttle fleet and maintenance; NASA is looking towards keeping the whole thing simple for the next iteration. This precludes any really sexy stuff like a reusable fly-back first stage or lifting body re-entry system.

It also means that expendability will be a key design parameter -- which precludes the use of reusable engines like SSME. The high cost of SSME was allowable during the Shuttle Program, since we got them back on each mission.

Remember -- if this architecture and launch vehicle lasts as long as the shuttle -- thirty years at five launches or more a year, the savings of using an expendable engine like STME or RS-68 add up big time.

4.) The heavy bias towards inline for a manned launcher, the requirement for a growth path from 70t to 150t; and the directive to use as many Shuttle type parts as possible will lead to use of the Shuttle SRBs for the heavy growth variant, and the use of existing 8.4 meter diameter tooling at Michoud to make the stages.

So basically; everyone gets a little bit of what they want -- but they don't win the total victory that their promoters want.

The Constellation people win on the point of not having to break out the HLV each time you want to go to orbit, but lose on the "totally separate vehicle" bit.

The DIRECT people win in regards to reuse of the SRB and 8.4 meter ET diameter tooling; but lose on the engine selection and "one vehicle for everything!" bit.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jimgagnon on 07/17/2010 07:23 AM
Remember -- if this architecture and launch vehicle lasts as long as the shuttle -- thirty years at five launches or more a year, the savings of using an expendable engine like STME or RS-68 add up big time.

When NASA put out the bid language for HLV proposals, they wanted quotes on 4 100mT launches per year. Some would like to see possible a variable launch rate where slowdowns and standdowns aren't expensive.

I think it would be a mistake to build this SD-HLV with a thirty-five years lifespan. Remember the bill language says that if a commercial alternative is available, it must be used. Elon Musk once said he could build a HLV for $3B The Air Force has long term plans for their own flyback booster, and ULA could take the Atlas V into that class should they perceive an opportunity.

All things point towards a relatively short lifespan for whatever SD-HLV we come up with. I would hate to see NASA try to amortize this launcher over four decades; one or two decades would seem to me more appropriate.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: pathfinder_01 on 07/17/2010 07:36 AM
Remember -- if this architecture and launch vehicle lasts as long as the shuttle -- thirty years at five launches or more a year, the savings of using an expendable engine like STME or RS-68 add up big time.

When NASA put out the bid language for HLV proposals, they wanted quotes on 4 100mT launches per year. Some would like to see possible a variable launch rate where slowdowns and standdowns aren't expensive.

I think it would be a mistake to build this SD-HLV with a thirty-five years lifespan. Remember the bill language says that if a commercial alternative is available, it must be used. Elon Musk once said he could build a HLV for $3B The Air Force has long term plans for their own flyback booster, and ULA could take the Atlas V into that class should they perceive an opportunity.

All things point towards a relatively short lifespan for whatever SD-HLV we come up with. I would hate to see NASA try to amortize this launcher over four decades; one or two decades would seem to me more appropriate.

There is another fly in the ointment when it comes to shuttle derived. I am a big fan of the shuttle, but I hate shuttle derived. It looses the shuttle’s reuability but not enough costs to be justified as an HLV. With the shuttle the shuttle itself was reusable as well as many payloads like spacehab\space lab.

BEO exploration is much more expensive than LEO exploration because of the equipment one needs to do it. You need a BEO capable capule, a habitate unit and/or lander, and an earth departure stage. All of which are currently disposable in nature due to lacking propellant depots, advanced propulsion and experience developing reusable BEO capsules and landers. Orion currently costs about 1 billion a capsule. I can easily see a BEO stack costing 2-4 billion dollars. 

If your payloads cost 2-4 billion dollars, and your HLV is not cheap, and all of it must be replaced each launch, you wont get many BEO flights out of a 19 billion dollar budget esp. as usually only half of it goes to HSF.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cinder on 07/17/2010 09:51 AM
Quote
I am a big fan of the shuttle, but I hate shuttle derived. It looses the shuttle’s reuability but not enough costs to be justified as an HLV. With the shuttle the shuttle itself was reusable as well as many payloads like spacehab\space lab.
Pardon the layman question, but wasn't there a pair of charts posted recently, one of them showing a J-130 as much cheaper than STS on a basis of $/kg to orbit (in function of number of flights)?  STS was by far the most expensive curve.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kraisee on 07/17/2010 11:02 AM
This one?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: KelvinZero on 07/17/2010 11:04 AM
Is there a good summary of this Authorization bill around?

I only found this. http://blog.nss.org/?p=1882

Particularly I am worried about what this means to the new technology budget.

(edit: some more links)
http://nasaengineer.com/?p=933 and in particular:
http://www.parabolicarc.com/2010/07/13/nasa-senate-bill-cuts-proposed-effort-funds-commercial-crew-rate/#more-15367
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cinder on 07/17/2010 11:55 AM
Yes Ross.  Is Pathfinder wrong, or is the chart, or is there something more to it (Jupiter bang for buck in a BEO role) that I missed?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kraisee on 07/17/2010 01:39 PM
An example of just some of the issues which he's missing:

Scenario A:   An Intermediate EELV-class launch vehicle costs $168m to lift a 20mT payload at a flight rate of 20 flights per year @ ~$8,400 per kg to LEO.   Mission needs 200mT IMLEO.

Factors at work:   The hardware portion of the payload now needs additional hardware because it can't be fully integrated on the ground and now has to include docking adapters and additional bulkheads.   All that costs more.   What would have massed, say, 40mT now masses 50mT.   Costs will have actually grown at an even greater rate than that due to all the additional systems involved, but you get the point.

Additionally, each propellant vehicle now requires a system to steer and dock it to a propellant depot, which 'costs' both extra fuel and extra mass, so the effective 20mT payload is now reduced to, say, 18mT per flight of final delivered mass.

Net result:   3 flights needed for 50mT of hardware launches, another 9 required for the fuel (not counting launching the depot).   At $168m per flight, this single mission for that year costs $2 billion in launch costs alone, not counting any of the additional penalty costs involved in the extra hardware development and production which is required.


Scenario B: An SD-HLV like J-246 costs ~$4,100 per kg to LEO at a flight rate of 6 per year, and can lift more than five payloads worth in a single launch, for a per flight cost of $451m.   Yes, that's three times the cost of the smaller EELV vehicle, but you only need 2 of them to meet the same 200mT IMLEO requirement for the same mission, not 12.

All of the hardware can be fully integrated on the ground prior to launch, and no design compromises have to be made at all, incurring only minimal payload development and production costs.

Total launch costs are a little under $1bn.   And you can proceed with most early Human Exploration class missions without actually having to develop the depot -- although doing so at some point only expands the capabilities by a substantial amount.


The difference only becomes greater when you start considering the costs for 2 missions or 3 missions per year.   And if we aren't planning an exploration program which is going to be flying more than one mission per year, really, what is the point?

We designed the Jupiter-246 to provide a 'sweet spot' enabling up to 1,200 tons of both hardware and propellant to be launched every year for a reasonable price (less than $4bn per year in launch costs -- about 80% of nominal Shuttle operations).   That is sufficient to support 6 Lunar Class missions per year without a depot, 12 with a depot.   And with that capability, only half of those each year are required in order to support Mars-class missions -- so you can continue to operate Lunar missions while conducting Mars missions every two years as well.

The reason why we have aimed at this level is so that we can get some reasonable production rates on the even more expensive spacecraft, not just the launchers.   If it costs $3bn/year to make landers, but each one then costs only $300m, 1 per year costs $3.3 billion whereas 6 per year cost only $4,800m and each mission only has to pay $800m for its lander.

You can't even dream of doing any of that with the non-HLV's.   And Ares-V grew too big to be economical any more, so you have to look in the mid-ground between the 20mT EELV class and the 180mT Ares-V class.

Take a guess where Jupiter is...

Ross.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kkattula on 07/17/2010 02:09 PM
Ross,  I can't recall if you have presented one before, but do you have a similar chart of cost per kg vs kg per year for each launcher?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: gladiator1332 on 07/18/2010 01:45 AM
So if all of this clears congress, what is next for NASA? Are we going to get an ESAS 2.0? Or will the SD-HLV report already released be seen as good enough evidence to make a decision?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: KelvinZero on 07/18/2010 01:58 AM
The reason why we have aimed at this level is so that we can get some reasonable production rates on the even more expensive spacecraft, not just the launchers.   If it costs $3bn/year to make landers, but each one then costs only $300m, 1 per year costs $3.3 billion whereas 6 per year cost only $4,800m and each mission only has to pay $800m for its lander.

What lander? :(
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr. mark on 07/18/2010 02:17 AM
I don't know about manned landers since the plan is to orbit the moon anyways, not land there.It may be a free return trajectory not even a lunar orbit. As far as unmanned, Armadillo Aerospace or Masten might be able to put something together by then for much cheaper than NASA.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: 2552 on 07/18/2010 03:30 AM
Scenario A:   An Intermediate EELV-class launch vehicle costs $168m to lift a 20mT payload at a flight rate of 20 flights per year @ ~$8,400 per kg to LEO.   Mission needs 200mT IMLEO.

$168m at 20 flights per year? Does this take into account spreading the fixed costs over those 20 launches? Is "Intermediate EELV-class launch vehicle" Atlas, Delta, or both (for 10 launches of each)?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: sdsds on 07/18/2010 04:25 AM
So if all of this clears congress, what is next for NASA? Are we going to get an ESAS 2.0?

This will clear Congress only if it has the tacit agreement of the President, so if it clears Congress the President will sign it into law.

I am not a political scientist but with this legislation the "intent of Congress" can be fairly clearly understood.  (When making determinations about the intent of lawmakers, courts consider not only the law itself, but also statements made on the floor or in committee, or as part of a Conference Report.) 

The intention expressed by Senator Hatch (R-Utah) was crystalline in its clarity:  only a heavy lift vehicle using (Utah-made) solid rocket boosters would meet the listed requirements.  I don't know of any other member of the committee who contradicted that in any way.  The intention expressed by Senator Vitter (R-Louisiana) was fairly clear as well, mentioning Michoud by name several times in the context of where the heavy lift vehicle would be assembled.  Physics strongly suggests that if a vehicle is using large SRBs the core should be hydrolox with regenerative nozzle cooling, i.e. SSME.  (This is probably the reverse of how a rocket scientist thinks about it....)  So except for the upper stage there isn't much design work left to do.

The intent of Congress expressed by this law would be that NASA find missions for which this vehicle is appropriate.  Implicitly this is an adoption of the "flexible path" mentality, which says we don't know today exactly where we're going tomorrow, or exactly how we'll get there, and that's OK.

This aspect of the legislation is perhaps the truest reflection of the "sea change" that will take place in the 2011 fiscal year.  It turns out Congress doesn't need to mandate specific destinations for human space exploration missions!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: alexw on 07/18/2010 07:37 AM
An example of just some of the issues which he's missing:
Scenario A:   An Intermediate EELV-class launch vehicle costs $168m to lift a 20mT payload at a flight rate of 20 flights per year @ ~$8,400 per kg to LEO.   Mission needs 200mT IMLEO.
...
Net result:   3 flights needed for 50mT of hardware launches, another 9 required for the fuel (not counting launching the depot).   At $168m per flight, this single mission for that year costs $2 billion in launch costs alone, not counting any of the additional penalty costs involved in the extra hardware development and production which is required.

Scenario B: An SD-HLV like J-246 costs ~$4,100 per kg to LEO at a flight rate of 6 per year, and can lift more than five payloads worth in a single launch, for a per flight cost of $451m.   Yes, that's three times the cost of the smaller EELV vehicle, but you only need 2 of them to meet the same 200mT IMLEO requirement for the same mission, not 12.
    But if you can only afford one 200mT mission a year (how many NEO or Lagrange missions are there, already?), your $3-$5 billion fixed costs SDHLV (depending on how NASA mangles DIRECT) is more expensive than just paying for EELV launches. A point which, IIRC, you have made yourself.

Quote
You can't even dream of doing any of that with the non-HLV's.   And Ares-V grew too big to be economical any more, so you have to look in the mid-ground between the 20mT EELV class and the 180mT Ares-V class.
Take a guess where Jupiter is...
   In a sweet spot. So would EELV Phase I or II, without the same fixed costs.
   -Alex
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: telomerase99 on 07/18/2010 08:48 AM
This path doesnt seem so flexible. I don't see how it embodies the flexible path as Garver and the Whitehouse state. If we spend 11 billion on a launch  system with really high operating costs then we are really stuck with it. If times get tough we have to cancel the whole project and are left with nothing. Maybe NASA could do a study and find that a liquid would have much lower operating costs and use the 11 billion to develop an all liquid heavy lift much sooner.

I guess the downside would be that it still would not be competitively awarded... Probably the best thing would be for NASA to be dismantled all together and for money for technology and manned space flight to be competitively awarded directly. Looks like there are too many hands in the pot. Obama in my mind has failed once again.

I am glad that there will be less lay offs in this tough job market though... That in my mind, is the silverlining in this otherwise tragic compromise that virtually grounds us for another five years and prevents the development of any new technology via NASA funds.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: clongton on 07/18/2010 11:29 AM
Maybe NASA could do a study and find that a liquid would have much lower operating costs and use the 11 billion to develop an all liquid heavy lift much sooner.

Just responding to your musing: The AJAX HLV fits that bill. But let's not go there in *this* thread.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Cinder on 07/19/2010 08:34 PM
Thank you Ross.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/20/2010 12:21 AM
Not sure if this is the place to mention this, but according to Jeff Foust on twitter:

Jeff Foust   RT @KenMonroe: The House Science and Technology Cmte will mark up the #NASA Authorization Act of 2010 on Thurs at 10am in 2318 Rayburn HOB.

Anyone know if it will be live fed? and what the url would likely be if it is? Anyone have info on what their draft looks like, and if there are any important differences with the Senate bill?

Lastly, should this be in a new thread?

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/20/2010 12:25 AM
Not sure if this is the place to mention this, but according to Jeff Foust on twitter:

Jeff Foust   RT @KenMonroe: The House Science and Technology Cmte will mark up the #NASA Authorization Act of 2010 on Thurs at 10am in 2318 Rayburn HOB.

Anyone know if it will be live fed? and what the url would likely be if it is? Anyone have info on what their draft looks like, and if there are any important differences with the Senate bill?

Lastly, should this be in a new thread?

~Jon

http://science.house.gov/legislation/leg_highlights_detail.aspx?NewsID=2885

That's the highlights...

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/20/2010 12:34 AM
http://science.house.gov/legislation/leg_highlights_detail.aspx?NewsID=2885

That's the highlights...
Thanks for the spot, Jon -- FWIW, the full text of the bill on the House side "as noticed for markup" is linked on that page (direct link (http://democrats.science.house.gov/Media/file/Commdocs/NASA_Authorization_Act_2010.pdf)).  Just got it now, but will be interesting to see how much of a match this is with the Senate bill.

Edit: never mind about it 'matching' -- at least going into markup, it's significantly different than the Senate bill.  Wish I had more time to look at this tonight, but at first glance this is closer to the President's proposed budget.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 12:58 AM
No sign of STS-135 in this? Did I miss it?

And:
"Sec. 202. Restructured Exploration Program

Directs the Administrator to develop a plan to restructure the current exploration program and develop, test, and demonstrate a government-owned crew transportation system and evolvable heavy lift transportation system in a manner that enables a challenging exploration program, minimizes the human space flight “gap”, seeks efficiencies in program management and reductions in fixed and operating costs, requires a high level of crew safety, contains a robust flight and ground test program, facilitates the transition of Shuttle personnel, makes maximum practicable use of the work completed to date on the Orion, Ares I, heavy lift, and ground support and exploration enabling projects and contracts, and is phased in a manner consistent with available and anticipated resources."

How are they going to use Ares I for use with HLV? That seems to replace SD from the Senate side?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/20/2010 01:00 AM
No sign of STS-135 in this? Did I miss it?
Nope, it's not in this draft, and neither is any additional money for operations -- the Senate bill authorizes ~$1.6 billion, this bill authorizes $1 billion (same as in the President's request).

Will be interesting to see what it looks like when it goes to the House floor, but if it's anything like this draft, perhaps there's still some negotiating to do in conference.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 01:19 AM
No sign of STS-135 in this? Did I miss it?
Nope, it's not in this draft, and neither is any additional money for operations -- the Senate bill authorizes ~$1.6 billion, this bill authorizes $1 billion (same as in the President's request).

Will be interesting to see what it looks like when it goes to the House floor, but if it's anything like this draft, perhaps there's still some negotiating to do in conference.


I'm being dramatic, but does that mean there's some shuttle hating Congressmen out there? I'm at a loss as to how STS-135 would be removed.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: zerm on 07/20/2010 01:20 AM
No sign of STS-135 in this? Did I miss it?

And:
"Sec. 202. Restructured Exploration Program

Directs the Administrator to develop a plan to restructure the current exploration program and develop, test, and demonstrate a government-owned crew transportation system and evolvable heavy lift transportation system in a manner that enables a challenging exploration program, minimizes the human space flight “gap”, seeks efficiencies in program management and reductions in fixed and operating costs, requires a high level of crew safety, contains a robust flight and ground test program, facilitates the transition of Shuttle personnel, makes maximum practicable use of the work completed to date on the Orion, Ares I, heavy lift, and ground support and exploration enabling projects and contracts, and is phased in a manner consistent with available and anticipated resources."

How are they going to use Ares I for use with HLV? That seems to replace SD from the Senate side?

Just a note- in the Senate hearings, Nelson asked Bolden what he thought of using an Ares I (X) type of vehicle to flight test the 5 seg. SRBs for a HLV. Bolden replied that he thought that would be a good idea because budget wise it would allow the costs of the Ares I program to then be spread across both programs, thus making it appear to be lower in cost. This type of reasoning could be the reason that you see this mentioned.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 01:26 AM
Thanks Zerm, and also noting they are really going after commercial crew here (as in badly). Wording such as a government crew system.

Is Congress trying to bring back Constellation, with Ares I/Orion?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/20/2010 01:28 AM
Wow, this is widely divergent from the Senate bill.  First off, they extend the budget authorizations through 2015, instead of 2013.  Can authorizations really be extend for that length of time and still be expected to make sense that far down the road?

Then they use the CAIB codewords commonly used for justifying the Ares-I, uh, design: "The design of the system should give overriding priority to crew safety, rather than trade safety against other performance criteria, such as low cost and reusability." (p6 lines 9-12).  Forget everything else, as long as someone somewhere can claim that Ares-I is "safer" than any other rocket conceived, that is what we'll get.  Ugh.

And instead of specifying performance metrics and other constraints designed to yield the desired outcome (SDLV/DIRECT), they simply state that the restructured space program must build on the investments made to date on the Orion, Ares-I, and heavy-lift projects. (p6 lines 15-18).  That's way too much wiggle room if you ask me.

That's as far as I've gotten so far, but that corresponds most closely to the Senate's SLS.  Of course, not by name.   This bill has no name for the follow-on to Shuttle/ replacement for CxP.

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 01:32 AM
This really does read like someone's pressing to keep Ares I.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mrryndrsn on 07/20/2010 01:38 AM
No sign of STS-135 in this? Did I miss it?

And:
"Sec. 202. Restructured Exploration Program

Directs the Administrator to develop a plan to restructure the current exploration program and develop, test, and demonstrate a government-owned crew transportation system and evolvable heavy lift transportation system in a manner that enables a challenging exploration program, minimizes the human space flight “gap”, seeks efficiencies in program management and reductions in fixed and operating costs, requires a high level of crew safety, contains a robust flight and ground test program, facilitates the transition of Shuttle personnel, makes maximum practicable use of the work completed to date on the Orion, Ares I, heavy lift, and ground support and exploration enabling projects and contracts, and is phased in a manner consistent with available and anticipated resources."

How are they going to use Ares I for use with HLV? That seems to replace SD from the Senate side?

They say later in section 202

"(5) The crew transportation system shall have
 predicted levels of safety during ascent to low-Earth
 orbit, transit, and descent from low-Earth orbit that
 are not less than those required of the Ares I/Orion
 configuration that has completed program preliminary design review."

Later on in the section they say

"(6) In order to make the most cost-effective use
of the funds available for the restructured exploration program, the Administrator shall pursue the expeditious and cost-efficient development of a heavy lift launch system that utilizes the systems and flight and ground test activities of the crew transportation system developed under this section to the maximum extent practicable."

They finish off by saying

"(D) the Administrator shall strive to meet
the goal of having the heavy lift launch vehicle authorized in this paragraph available for operational missions by the end of the current decade."

These people have insisted on reinstating Ares 1, stipulated that it has completed preliminary design review, and demanded an HLV by the end of the decade.

Murray Anderson

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Ronsmytheiii on 07/20/2010 01:39 AM
In some ways the House bill matters, and in others it does not.  The two Bills will have to undergo reconciliation anyhow and then voted on by both chambers again before being sent to the President.  If I were the Senators and the administration I would push the House to pass the current compromise as it seems best, yet the Representatives are a bit more eccentric than the Senators.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/20/2010 01:41 AM
I'm being dramatic, but does that mean there's some shuttle hating Congressmen out there? I'm at a loss as to how STS-135 would be removed.
I don't know that the House bill is based on the Senate bill (paging 51D Mascot again), at least in terms of HSF.  (Outside of HSF, there's probably not much disagreement.)

In terms of HSF, though, it certainly appears that the House bill makes some changes to the President's proposal, particularly with respect to "Constellation," but nothing like the Senate bill, which seems more like a rewrite from scratch.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/20/2010 01:45 AM
Sounds like someone is still in denial about the death of CxP and Ares.  I'm not in Rep. Hall's district but I'm going to send him a polite letter anyway.

I hope it helps, because this bill is a disaster waiting to happen, should anything remotely like it get enacted.

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/20/2010 01:50 AM
In some ways the House bill matters, and in others it does not.  The two Bills will have to undergo reconciliation anyhow and then voted on by both chambers again before being sent to the President.  If I were the Senators and the administration I would push the House to pass the current compromise as it seems best, yet the Representatives are a bit more eccentric than the Senators.
Given the current NASA administration, I would think they would favor the House version over the Senate version.  With respect to HSF (which is where the disagreement is), the former pretty much leaves all the details to NASA; the latter is more explicit about what NASA must produce with things like launch vehicle lift-capabilities.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/20/2010 01:51 AM
Sounds like someone wants to spread a banner saying "what is going on at NASA?". Maybe rubbing it in a little bit to get further concessions...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 01:52 AM
This really does read like someone's pressing to keep Ares I.

Not at all suprised.

Reasons for 135s absence: Senate side took care of it. When the two are reconciled it will be in the final, actual plan, IMO.

As to your comment about Ares 1: The answer is yes:


Those behind it may include: Pete Olson, other from Texas (unamed), Shelby (doubtful), Others unammed from Arizona and Utah, Giffords

We all forgot something didn't we: This whole time Giffords has not once changed from her save Ares 1 position even after Shelby changed positions to support SDHLV more instead


Yes some people want to save ares 1. But it will not be saved. Maybe 1 more test flight (would be fully operational otherwise congress wont pay for it).

But after that, no Ares 1 is dead. SDHLV most likely: Iteration 1 J140 SH, iteration 2 J241 SH. If ATK plays ball: J140 4 seg/ J241 4 seg.

8)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/20/2010 01:56 AM
What happens when you blend this bill and the president's proposal?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 01:57 AM
Its all very simple. But the appropriators appear more inline with the senate proposal. Therefore the more likely scenerio is:

the final plan will contain more aspects of the senate bill and less of the House bill. The more extreme, "save ares" aspects will not be tolerated.

That seems likely IMHO.

OFC someone recently told me never to underestimate congressional incompetence............

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 01:57 AM
What happens when you blend this bill and the president's proposal?

POTUS fy 2011 is dead ethier way. Period.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/20/2010 02:01 AM
I don't think Ares 1 development is in the House version of the NASA Authorization Bill. Ares 1 is not a HLV. They may take the 5 Segment solid rockets from Ares 1 & transfer it to the SD-HLV.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/20/2010 02:03 AM
Thanks Zerm, and also noting they are really going after commercial crew here (as in badly). Wording such as a government crew system.

Is Congress trying to bring back Constellation, with Ares I/Orion?

Remember, this is the House proposal, as the bill reported last week was the Senate proposal; it becomes the "Congress'" proposal only when they've come to agreement on a final version to send to the President. It probably matters somewhat in determining the eventual outcome that the White House has signaled its support of the Senate bill, which was the product of a very intense effort to reach a compromise across party lines and across divergent space policy interests and approaches. From its inception as a body of text it was a jointly-developed product, built step by step (word by word!) with a view to maintaining consensus. I am not suggesting the House bill was constructed any differently; just describing the approach taken by the Senate.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 02:03 AM
I don't think Ares 1 development is in the House version of the NASA Authorization Bill. Ares 1 is not a HLV. They may take the 5 Segment solid rockets from Ares 1 & transfer it to the SD-HLV.
Nothing beyond one more test flight IMO.

As I said its gone and not coming back. HOWEVER: We don;t need one more test flight, the money is FAR better served building the first Jupiter rocket.

But politics......... :P
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 02:04 AM
Thanks Zerm, and also noting they are really going after commercial crew here (as in badly). Wording such as a government crew system.

Is Congress trying to bring back Constellation, with Ares I/Orion?

Remember, this is the House proposal, as the bill reported last week was the Senate proposal; it becomes the "Congress'" proposal only when they've come to agreement on a final version to send to the President.

I am expecting a Veto. What about you?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/20/2010 02:08 AM
Thanks Zerm, and also noting they are really going after commercial crew here (as in badly). Wording such as a government crew system.

Is Congress trying to bring back Constellation, with Ares I/Orion?

Remember, this is the House proposal, as the bill reported last week was the Senate proposal; it becomes the "Congress'" proposal only when they've come to agreement on a final version to send to the President.

I guess what others and myself are concerned about is if the Senate compromise has to then compromise with the House to get it through Congress, everything may be so watered-down it effectively still carries the same net result of everything being terminated and at the cost of any immediate gains. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 02:09 AM
I dont think thats where we should be worried.

I dont see any reason why Obama wouldn't just veto the thing.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TrueBlueWitt on 07/20/2010 02:10 AM
Please.. NO.. NO.. NO.. and NO again to Ares-1.  That will completely kill the budget.. and the bill. UGHH!   Just say NO!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 02:11 AM
It would only be one test flight.

Since they seem intent on continuing 5 seg and j2x that does enough damage on its own (SDHLV has to morph).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/20/2010 02:21 AM
It would only be one test flight.

Since they seem intent on continuing 5 seg and j2x that does enough damage on its own (SDHLV has to morph).

No, they don't want just one more test flight.  Read the draft, they use the CAIB language that Griffin used to justify Ares-I: safety above all else, even if it's not affordable, flexible, practical, or even usable.  Just "safe".  You know, like sitting in a bank vault underground somewhere.

Mark S.

Edit: And to top it all off, it doesn't even have to actually be safer, as long as someone can claim that it's safer using a computer model or probabilistic calculations.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 02:23 AM
It would only be one test flight.

Since they seem intent on continuing 5 seg and j2x that does enough damage on its own (SDHLV has to morph).

No, they don't want just one more test flight.  Read the draft, they use the CAIB language that Griffin used to justify Ares-I: safety above all else, even if it's not affordable, flexible, practical, or even usable.  Just "safe".  You know, like sitting in a bank vault underground somewhere.

Mark S.

I didn;t say they want more than just a test flight (house side). I know that.

I said it will only be one more

If they go down this road one way or another there will only be one more ares 1 flight

If there is more than one it will most likely break the bank........again :P
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DigitalMan on 07/20/2010 02:56 AM
I don't care for a few things you (not to imply you did it all yourself!) put in the senate bill, but I think yours is MUCH better than the house bill.

One of my concerns is how much development, if any will be accomplished for commercial crew in 2011.  Time is of the essence.   The house version seems to allow this to proceed right away.  It might even concede that Atlas and Delta could qualify easily since they already launch 'Class A' payloads, according to its definition.

Another is the huge cuts to technology development, the house version does not seem to cut as much, although I didn't take the time to add the numbers or do side-by-side comparisons.  Some of these things are low TRL or will require more or longer build / launch / test cycles to get to a point where they are usable for BEO exploration.  Small fission reactors for instance and effective shielding.

In spite of all the disagreements between so many folks, I'm happy to have been here for so long watching this unfold and then to see someone like yourself be recognized like that last week. 

Congrats.

Quote from: 51D Mascot link=topic=22270.msg620098#msg620098
date=1279591408
Thanks Zerm, and also noting they are really going after commercial crew here (as in badly). Wording such as a government crew system.

Is Congress trying to bring back Constellation, with Ares I/Orion?

Remember, this is the House proposal, as the bill reported last week was the Senate proposal; it becomes the "Congress'" proposal only when they've come to agreement on a final version to send to the President. It probably matters somewhat in determining the eventual outcome that the White House has signaled its support of the Senate bill, which was the product of a very intense effort to reach a compromise across party lines and across divergent space policy interests and approaches. From its inception as a body of text it was a jointly-developed product, built step by step (word by word!) with a view to maintaining consensus. I am not suggesting the House bill was constructed any differently; just describing the approach taken by the Senate.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Lars_J on 07/20/2010 03:21 AM
I dont think thats where we should be worried.

I dont see any reason why Obama wouldn't just veto the thing.

At this point I'm starting to hope that he WILL veto the thing. More CxP and Ares allusions that you can shake a stick at. Ugh. Or call it the "jobs creation act" and just call it a day.

BUT if Commercial crew is funded at decent levels I will be happy. The rest of NASA can take their money and and prove once again how poor they are at project management.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: SpacexULA on 07/20/2010 03:24 AM
What happens when you blend this bill and the president's proposal?
POTUS fy 2011 is dead ethier way. Period.

It's already blended.  That's the Nelson Bill
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 03:25 AM
What happens if this all results in the President vetoing it? I thought Congress has the power? If he vetoes it, what happens?

(I REALLY don't understand politics ;D)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Aobrien on 07/20/2010 03:39 AM
As I know it it's a check and balances set up. I believe the president can be overpowered by congress with a strong enough vote...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HelixSpiral on 07/20/2010 03:43 AM
A veto by the President can be overridden by a two-thirds vote of both houses of Congress. From my recollection, it doesn't happen that often.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/20/2010 03:45 AM
That's right. It also unlikely to happen since the Democrats control Congress and they don't want to overide the President.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 03:46 AM
A veto by the President can be overridden by a two-thirds vote of both houses of Congress. From my recollection, it doesn't happen that often.

OV and others seem to have indicated that as there wre 0 descenting votes on the Senate side, and there are likley to be very few or none on the House side, such a majority is already there in case of a Veto HOWEVER: If he vetoes it what guaranty is there that the "Vote" to override will occur before fy 2011 begins ? If they don;t enact this thing before year's end then SDHLV is a goner.

Not out of the woods yet. If congress can pull this off it will be one of the few good things (IMO) that *this* congress has done.

If not, well................



Another monkey wrench: Many in Congress most likely wont be there next year. What are the chances of the "new" congress cutting this thing drastically for the fy 2012 bill?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 03:48 AM
That's right. It also unlikely to happen since the Democrats control Congress and they don't want to overide the President.

They have until November.

A major political shift is coming, I believe it will hurt NASA in the long run because the candidates that are getting elected in these primaries are increasingly "anti spending" and "anti government"

Nasa fits both of those so.................
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/20/2010 03:54 AM
I'm not seeing this as the resurrection of Ares I, maybe I'm missing something. 

House:
Quote
In an environment of constrained budgets, responsible stewardship of taxpayer-provided resources makes it imperative that NASA’s exploration program be carried out in a manner that builds on the investments made to date in the Orion, Ares I, and heavy lift projects and other activities of the exploration program in existence prior to fiscal year 2011 rather than discarding them.

Senate Draft:
Quote
In developing the Space Launch System pursuant to section 302 and the multi-purpose crew vehicle pursuant to section 303, the Administrator shall, to the extent practicable, utilize existing contracts, investments, workforce, industrial base, and capabilities from the Space Shuttle and former Orion and Ares 1 projects, including Space Shuttle-derived components and Ares 1 components that use existing United States propulsion systems, including liquid fuel engines, external tank or tank-related capability, and solid rocket motor engines, and associated testing facilities, either in being or under construction as of the date of enactment of this Act.

Are they really that drastically different from an Ares I perspective? Other than the mention of shuttle derived these two basically both say "use as much as you can from CxP" to me. I'm assuming that Orion was to be government owned and operated in the Senate draft too.

What speaks more is the $50 million a year compared to $312/$400/$500 million for commercial crew. Massive difference, unless I'm missing something again. All the sudden the Senate bill draft speaks pretty favorably to commercial crew IMO.

Also, 51D Mascot mentioned that the White House is saying they support the Senate bill, and Nelson said to expect a comment last Friday, but I haven't seen anything directly from them. Anybody have a link?

Whats involved in the merger of these two? How long will it take?

Quote
However, NASA’s share of the Federal discretionary budgetary authority has declined significantly relative to its post-Apollo historical average share of 2.07 percent. It should be a national goal to restore NASA’s funding share to its post-Apollo historical average.

Hah! TEASE!  :-X 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/20/2010 03:56 AM
Lets also remember that this is the Authorization bill--not the Appropriations bill. The Appropriators may realize that putting Ares 1 back in is an absolute diaster!!!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 04:05 AM
Thanks, but if the President vetos, does that mean there's a Continuing Resolution?

I know, long way off yet, but there's thousands of workers about to lose their jobs in October, and I doubt a CR would save many of them?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/20/2010 04:13 AM
That's right. It also unlikely to happen since the Democrats control Congress and they don't want to overide the President.

They have until November.

A major political shift is coming, I believe it will hurt NASA in the long run because the candidates that are getting elected in these primaries are increasingly "anti spending" and "anti government"

Nasa fits both of those so.................

The Democrats will still control the Senate as only 1/3 of the Senators are up for election. However, the Democrats will likely lose control of the House.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/20/2010 04:30 AM
It would only be one test flight.

Since they seem intent on continuing 5 seg and j2x that does enough damage on its own (SDHLV has to morph).

No, they don't want just one more test flight.  Read the draft, they use the CAIB language that Griffin used to justify Ares-I: safety above all else, even if it's not affordable, flexible, practical, or even usable.  Just "safe".  You know, like sitting in a bank vault underground somewhere.

Mark S.

Edit: And to top it all off, it doesn't even have to actually be safer, as long as someone can claim that it's safer using a computer model or probabilistic calculations.

You'd be amazed what you can prove with computer models... ;-)

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/20/2010 04:30 AM
Thanks, but if the President vetos, does that mean there's a Continuing Resolution?

I know, long way off yet, but there's thousands of workers about to lose their jobs in October, and I doubt a CR would save many of them?

Veto of the authorization bill does not directly affect the appropriations. If the appropriators are unable to pass a separate appropriations bill before October 1st, THAT is what triggers a CR. A CR can have a wide range of things incorporated into it, from benchmarking funding levels at levels in a House or Senate version of a specific appropriations bill, if passed, by either body, but not yet by both, or by tying the spending levels during the life of the CR to the amounts previously appropriated for FY 2010, or can even incorporate relevant language from an authorization bill passed by one House of Congress, or by an authorization bill in which a veto was over-ridden, assuming no objection is raised to "legislating in appropriations." It's not as cut and dried as many people think, and it depends heavily on the degree of consensus among the Appropriations leadership, in concert with the White House, primarily, so no definitive, cut-and-dried answer to the question is really possible--or valid--until much later in the process.

I know...clear as mud, as many of my "process posts" seem to be, because the legislative process is just not "simple," regardless of how simple-minded many of us involved in it might be, hehe. There's also the potential that, if the Administration has truly embraced the essence of the compromise Senate bill, and at least the Senate appropriators have adopted the funding levels and distribution for FY 2011, that it could represent an evolution of the internal policy of the Administration in such a way that they could, administratively, direct NASA to "undo" some of the steps taken to begin implementing the direction of the FY 2011 Budget Request which, by the "adoption of the new policy direction" are no longer valid, and in fact disruptive of the "new policy direction." That could have immediate salutary effects on the workforce disruptions that were initiated or accelerated to implement the February 1st policy. They don't NEED the legislation to make voluntary shifts in the new, compromise direction, IF they have truly embraced it.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 04:46 AM
Not at all, sure it's complicated, but that actually helps explains things - even to me! :) Appreciate the info, as always!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/20/2010 06:34 AM
Well, it seems that someone in the House is determined to see NASA go under. Resurrecting Ares I is the best way to achieve that.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: CessnaDriver on 07/20/2010 07:19 AM
That's right. It also unlikely to happen since the Democrats control Congress and they don't want to overide the President.

They have until November.

A major political shift is coming, I believe it will hurt NASA in the long run because the candidates that are getting elected in these primaries are increasingly "anti spending" and "anti government"

Nasa fits both of those so.................

I wouldn't be so sure of that.
Many voices on the right were upset that NASA HSF was radically being altered by Obama and also there is upset that soon American astronauts will have to ride Russian rockets to get to space station we mostly payed for.

I would venture that NASA HSF is viewed more as a strategic interest that America must maintain a lead in.

It could easily be a change for the positive for NASA HSF.

In fact I would bet on it. Democrats are generally far more likely to make the old tired and flawed arguement of why are we "wasting" money up there when there are people down here that need help.

At least that is my experience with everyday folks that are clearly on the side of one party or the other.





Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/20/2010 07:29 AM
I wouldn't be so sure of that.
Many voices on the right were upset that NASA HSF was radically being altered by Obama and also there is upset that soon American astronauts will have to ride Russian rockets to get to space station we mostly payed for.

I would venture that NASA HSF is viewed more as a strategic interest that America must maintain a lead in.

It could easily be a change for the positive for NASA HSF.

In fact I would bet on it. Democrats are generally far more likely to make the old tired and flawed arguement of why are we "wasting" money up there when there are people down here that need help.

At least that is my experience with everyday folks that are clearly on the side of one party or the other.


If the GOP takes control, many of their people will indeed be making loud noises about not giving control of America's strategic interest (HSF) to those "godless commies" and how Obama's plan is tantamount to treason. They will endorse a nationalistic alternative. But when it comes to funding, they will cut NASA's budget rather than increase it. This will be sold to the public as "cutting the fat of socialistic NASA spending" and "rationalisation". The public will ofc approve, especially in the current economic situation, and the politicians will promise that NASA will continue to fly US astronauts (which is all most common folk care about, even if it means cancelling all unmanned and research projects and that those astronauts will only do circles in LEO in a capsule like Apollo 7).

The budget cut wil be just enough so that there will be no hard mass-layoffs and that some studies for future "American Greatness in Space" continue and that some form of SD-launcher is in construction (so that contractors get money) but spread out over enough time that it can quietly be shut down a few years hence when nobody cares anymore...

Like I said before, Congress does not care if anything actually flies. They only care about pork money in their own back yard, no angry laid-off workers voting them out of office and nice speaches about "American Greatness in Space" and "no US taxpayer money for the Russkies".

This is true irrespective of which party controls the House and Senate.

Politics is more about make-believe than any form of reality.

All IMO, ofc. And yes, I don't like politicians (and that's putting it mildly).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/20/2010 07:58 AM
For the curious, I've tallied up the total spending on various items for FY2011-FY2013 (the only three years covered by the Senate draft bill):

Space Launch System: $7.15B (1.9+2.65+2.6)

Multi-purpose crew vehicle/Orion: $4B (1.3+1.3+1.4)

Mid/high-TRL exploration technology, heavy-lift, exploration architectures, and demonstrations: $975.9M (WH proposed $5.45B)

Robotic exploration precursor missions: 44+100+100= $244M (WH proposed $1.33B)

Low/mid-TRL space technology: 225+450+500= $1.175B (WH proposed $2.64B)

Commercial crew: 312+400+500= $1.2B (WH proposed $3.3B)

For comparison, I've tallied up FY2011-FY2013 totals from the House draft bill. The House bill also includes FY2014 and FY2015, but for the sake of comparison I'm leaving these out:

Restructured exploration program (seems to include HLV, Orion): 4.1563+4.5168+4.5135=$13.1866B

Mid/high-TRL exploration technology and demonstrations: $5M

Robotic exploration precursor missions: $5M

Low/mid-TRL space technology: 572.2+1,012.2+1059.7=$2.644B

Commercial crew: 50+50+50=$150M

Loan and loan guarantee program for commercial crew: 100+100+100=$300M

One curious item (out of many) is that the amount for the "restructured exploration program" total for FY2011-2013 in the House bill has around $2B more than the SDHLV+Orion total in the Senate bill. Reading through the bill, it almost sounds like a slush fund to be used at the Administrator's discretion for other items (e.g. exploration technology and commercial crew), although that seems to be contrary to what I would've expected from the House.

It's also interesting that the House bill specifies that "the Administrator shall strive to meet the goal of having the heavy lift launch vehicle authorized in this paragraph available for operational missions by the end of the current decade," rather than the 2016 deadline in the Senate bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/20/2010 08:12 AM

One curious item (out of many) is that the amount for the "restructured exploration program" total for FY2011-2013 in the House bill has around $2B more than the SDHLV+Orion total in the Senate bill. Reading through the bill, it almost sounds like a slush fund to be used at the Administrator's discretion for other items (e.g. exploration technology and commercial crew), although that seems to be contrary to what I would've expected from the House.

Scratch that, I was reading through Sec. 202 again and it seems the $13.1866B from FY2011-FY2013 (or $22.64B over FY2011-FY2015) is specifically for HLV and Orion development.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/20/2010 08:19 AM
From the press release announcing the House bill:

http://science.house.gov/press/PRArticle.aspx?NewsID=2883
Quote
it provides more than $4.9 billion in funding for commercial crew- and commercial cargo-related initiatives

Does anybody know how this figure gets generated from what's actually in the bill? By my calculations, from FY2011-2015 the House bill spends a total of $250M on commercial crew, and $500M on the loan program. Where does the other $4.15B appear?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonth on 07/20/2010 08:29 AM
From the press release announcing the House bill:

http://science.house.gov/press/PRArticle.aspx?NewsID=2883
Quote
it provides more than $4.9 billion in funding for commercial crew- and commercial cargo-related initiatives

Does anybody know how this figure gets generated from what's actually in the bill? By my calculations, from FY2011-2015 the House bill spends a total of $250M on commercial crew, and $500M on the loan program. Where does the other $4.15B appear?

They probably added up nominal CRS procurement funds with CCdev etc. Or alternatively, Orion is now dubbed a "commercial crew" initiative.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/20/2010 08:34 AM
Or alternatively, Orion is now dubbed a "commercial crew" initiative.

Very possible, even probable. After all, they define what "commercial" means...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Ben the Space Brit on 07/20/2010 09:29 AM
The problem is, of course, that the House is still running on 'Griffin-time', where Ares-I is the safest rocket in existance and is on schedule with no serious show-stoppers.  It is clear that the Senate is no longer operating under that misapprehension.

Overall, the reconcilliatino of the two bills is going to be what is charitably known as 'a hell of a show'.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/20/2010 11:29 AM
Thanks, but if the President vetos, does that mean there's a Continuing Resolution?

I know, long way off yet, but there's thousands of workers about to lose their jobs in October, and I doubt a CR would save many of them?
Not sure the Senate reauthorization would save the USA layoffs already announced, as the level funded is still significantly reduced.  The timing might also rule out the extra Shuttle flight, if the decision has to be made next month.  This seems to make things less certain; it also threatens to drag passage/enactment out for a longer period of time.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: zerm on 07/20/2010 12:32 PM
There is a differance in terms so far as what Repub.s may vote for or against following the November election- and that will be key. If NASA HSF is "sold" as being an "Investment program" in the future, the nation, the human race, rather than an "entitlement program" then Repub.s will be able to vote for it. If you look at many of the spaceflight lobby groups, you will already see them using that term. Secondly, voting for cuts in NASA can easily appear as voting with Obama- now many newly sworn-in Congress people from the right are going to want to be seen in that light?

Still- it is FAR too early in the process for such speculation. Heck- I'm amazed, here we are not even a week after the Nelson bill mark-up in one committee, and some of you folks have already got it trashed and vetoed! Why?... because the term "Ares I" is in it? It may be wise to put the brakes on a bit, slow down and let the process work.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drkskywxlt on 07/20/2010 12:35 PM
The House bill is terrible!  Makes the Senate's look positively visionary in comparison.  Only $5M for tech development and another $5M for robotic precursors by 2013?  Might as well not even waste that money, because $5M won't get you anything beyond some powerpoint graphics.  I hope the reconciliation throws this garbage straight into the trash.  I don't see how Obama would support a finished bill with these numbers.   

P.S.  And no money for a restart of Pu-238 development!  This is atrocious. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: JohnFornaro on 07/20/2010 01:42 PM
...And to top it all off, it doesn't even have to actually be safer, as long as someone can claim that it's safer using a computer model or probabilistic calculations.

This is a good observation, and I think our government needs to be under a lot more supervision, because things are getting too squishy in the legal department.

In the Census, it has been seriously proposed to statistically estimate the nation's population, not count it, as is the Constitutional directive.  In the Patriot act, people can be put on the "list" on the basis of appearing to be terrorists, which seems to allow actual terrorists to merely maintain the "appearance" of being law abiding.  I imagine that there are other instances of this, where actual facts are delegated to the vagaries of personal opinion, and codified into law.

I have pointed out this obvious flaw of categorizing probabilistic "safety" against actual safety records, and concluding that the theoretical probabilities have more compelling reality.  I can't be sure of motive here, but it seems that this strategy allows some legal wiggle room when the poopo hits the fan and some catastrophic failure occurs.  It can always be argued that the letter of the safety law will have been followed, and that the theory has some subtle flaw, hitherto undiscovered.

I don't know how better language in this regard can be effectively inserted into these bills.  True that computer models are "amazing" in their abilities, properly programmed.  GIGO still rules, and it is the determination of the GI which can be subject to political manipulation; witness the "hockey stick" calculations for climate change.

If we had a few more moral scientists and mathemeticians in Congress, I'd feel a lot better.

A major political shift is coming, I believe it will hurt NASA in the long run because the candidates that are getting elected in these primaries are increasingly "anti spending" and "anti government"

We'll have to wait and see about that shift.  There's an argument which suggests that the "liberal" media is hamming up the "tea party" thing, in order to drum up the democratic party's base of support, which is thought to have falllen off somewhat because the racial aspects of the presidential election are a one-time thing.  Regarding the amnesty issue, there's also a slight possibility of many new voters being suddenly added, if that issue successfully passes Congress in that form in sufficient time.

The other thing to keep in mind is that since education is incorrectly seen as a "liberal" issue, that long term harm to NASA and the country may result from the "anti-spending" crowd cutting education, if they get the power to do so.

...if the Administration has truly embraced the essence of the compromise ... that it could represent an evolution of the internal policy of the Administration in such a way that they could, administratively, direct NASA to "undo" some of the steps taken to begin implementing the direction of the FY 2011 Budget Request which, by the "adoption of the new policy direction" are no longer valid, and in fact disruptive of the "new policy direction." That could have immediate salutary effects on the workforce disruptions that were initiated or accelerated to implement the February 1st policy. They don't NEED the legislation to make voluntary shifts in the new, compromise direction, IF they have truly embraced it.

I want to grab this rare opportunity for me to speak for all of us in saying thanks for reporting.

There's a lot of debate here on the "intent" and "motivation" of the industry insiders, Congress and the Administration as to the future of HSF.  The tortuous steps that all of these parties take to hide and then possibly reveal their intentions is just agonizing.

And still, we are only left with "if the Administration has truly embraced the essence of the compromise".  Big "if".

Nevertheless, there is some good in the language of the Senate bill.  The House bill less so.

...Still- it is FAR too early in the process for such speculation...

A slight miss, tho I agree with the gist of your remarks.  This has been going on since the A-Comm was appointed!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr. mark on 07/20/2010 02:38 PM
If I was the president I would insist on the Senate version of the bill especially when it comes to commercial spaceflight. The House version is a turkey. If commercial is drastically cut, if I were the president, I'd veto the bill asap.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/20/2010 02:41 PM
I haven't read the entire bill but one thing that I noticed is that they require ASAP to review NASA's human rating requirements for commercial crew. Given the fact that ASAP is not exactly favourable to commercial crew, this is a strange requirement. I am guessing that representative Gabrielle Gifford added this requirement as she is married to an astronaut and seemed very much against commercial crew.   
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Martin FL on 07/20/2010 02:41 PM
How about a poll, for preference to the Senate or House bill, or neither?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 02:55 PM
Done:
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22308.0
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TrueBlueWitt on 07/20/2010 03:26 PM
I'm rarely this frustrated about a bill.. I called my congressman(House) a few minutes ago.. Didn't talk to him directly, but tried to outline my feelings and oppostion to the House version of this to his staffer to pass along.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rcoppola on 07/20/2010 03:33 PM
IMO: The final Bill sent to the President, which he will sign, will very closely align with the Senate version. I can see a scenario, where a few Amendments will be added (concerning 5seg use on HLV etc) to the senate bill on behalf of some congressional counterparts when the bill goes before the full senate. Once the full Senate passes the bill, the House will simply pass that version on an up or down vote, doing away with the need for reconciliation and the bill is sent to the President.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 03:50 PM
SpaceX backing the Senate:

SpaceX Applauds Breakthrough Compromise in U.S. Senate on NASA Budget

Legislation Supports Domestic Commercial Crew Initiatives to Reduce Reliance on Russian Soyuz and Bring Critical High-Tech Jobs Back to the US

 

Hawthorne, CA – July 20, 2010 –SpaceX (Space Exploration Technologies) applauds the efforts of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee for their unanimous, bipartisan approval of the NASA Authorization Act of 2010.  This landmark legislation ushers in a new era in human spaceflight by embracing the commercial sector as a full partner and recognizing commercial crew services as the primary means of astronaut transport to the International Space Station (ISS).

 

“We are pleased that the Senate Commerce Committee has recognized that the best and only near-term option for eliminating America’s reliance on the Russian Soyuz for astronaut transportation is the development and use of commercial systems, such as SpaceX’s Falcon 9 and Dragon spacecraft” said Elon Musk, CEO & CTO, SpaceX.  “For the about the same amount that is currently being spent on purchasing seats on Russian launch vehicles, we can create thousands of high-tech, high-paying jobs right here at home.” 

 

In 2010, NASA will pay the Russian Space Agency $287.4 million for 6 seats on Russian Soyuz flights, which amounts to $47.9 million per seat.  By 2013, the price per seat paid to Russia to carry U.S. astronauts will exceed $55 million. 

 

Though it provides less funding than the President’s request, the new legislation provides $312 million in FY11 funding for the development of American commercial systems to transport crew to the ISS.  SpaceX is one of several companies currently developing commercial crew technology funded by NASA, including Nevada-based Sierra Nevada Corporation, Illinois-based Boeing Company, Colorado-based United Launch Alliance, Washington-based Blue Origin, Nevada-based Bigelow Aerospace, and Arizona- based Paragon Space Development Corporation.

 

SpaceX successfully launched its Falcon 9 rocket carrying a Dragon spacecraft test article in June 2010, meeting 100% of mission objectives on its first attempt.  The first demonstration flight with a fully operational Dragon spacecraft is targeted for late summer 2010.  This flight will be the first under NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program which was established in 2006 to encourage private companies to develop commercial space transport capabilities.  SpaceX currently employs over 1,100 people across California, Texas and Florida.

 

About SpaceX

SpaceX is developing a family of launch vehicles and spacecraft intended to increase the reliability and reduce the cost of both manned and unmanned space transportation, ultimately by a factor of ten. With the Falcon 1 and Falcon 9 vehicles, SpaceX offers highly reliable/cost-efficient launch capabilities for spacecraft insertion into any orbital altitude and inclination. Starting when the Space Shuttle retires,  SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft will provide Earth-to-LEO transport of pressurized and unpressurized cargo, including resupply to the International Space Station.

Founded in 2002, SpaceX is a private company owned by management and employees, with minority investments from Founders Fund and Draper Fisher Jurvetson. The SpaceX team now numbers over 1100, with corporate headquarters in Hawthorne, California. For more information, and to watch the archived video of the Falcon 9, Flight 1 launch, visit the SpaceX website at SpaceX.com.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/20/2010 05:28 PM
Way to go SpaceX!  Nice press release.  This shows that SpaceX is a classy organization, and is not going to throw a hissy fit because they didn't get the whole pie.

Now we need everyone else to get behind the Senate bill, and leave the House bill on the cutting-room floor.  The Senate obviously put a lot more thought and hard work into crafting their bill, and the House authorizations committee should be happy to adopt the Senate's version without too much debate.

Let's get it done!

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rcoppola on 07/20/2010 05:43 PM
IMO: in the end, the House will adopt the Senate version with minimal conflicting amendments. Senators, Hutchinson / Nelson will deal with their congressional counterparts accordingly. With an SD HLV / Orion BEO slated for 2016, keeping the installed contractor base mainly in-check and some agreements on how supporting Commercial will benefit certain local districts, this will all be done in short order. We are very close and the Senate Bill will be the way forward.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 05:45 PM
There's a letter from Neil Armstrong, James Lovell and Eugene Cernan to Chairwoman Mikulski and Ranking Member Shelby coming out shortly.

Make of it what you will when it's published.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: CessnaDriver on 07/20/2010 05:49 PM
There's a letter from Neil Armstrong, James Lovell and Eugene Cernan to Chairwoman Mikulski and Ranking Member Shelby coming out shortly.

Make of it what you will when it's published.


Good! I have wondered what they have thought of everything lately.

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rcoppola on 07/20/2010 05:50 PM
Prediction: They will come out in full support of the Senate Bill.
Here we go!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/20/2010 05:50 PM
Prediction: They will come out in full support of the Senate Bill.
Here we go!
I really, really hope so. That's not the only option, though. I've seen lots of irrationality regarding sticking with Ares I being thrown around in the various hearings, and so until I see their letter, I'm not going to rejoice.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: CessnaDriver on 07/20/2010 06:02 PM
The case still needs to be made though....

We seriously underfund NASA!

A half a penny of federal discretionary spending dollar?
A tiny tiny portion of the federal budget?

http://www.federalbudget.com/chart.gif

Given the tiny amount spent compared to the tens of billions or more congress will authorize in a hearbeat, even during these economic times, it's amazing that there is so much time and argument spent about NASA in Congress.

They could eliminate the NASA budget entirely and it wouldn't change a thing in the big federal spending picture. And that argument goes for doubling the NASA budget too!

Yet NASA assures so much for this nations future, and humanity.

There are those that accept underfunding as a fact of life, that it will never change.

That has been a big mistake in my view.

We do not make our wheels squeek as well as others that get far more funding for questionable returns to the nation.

That needs to change.


Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/20/2010 06:06 PM
The case still needs to be made though....

We seriously underfund NASA!

A half a penny of federal discretionary spending dollar?
A tiny tiny portion of the federal budget?

http://www.federalbudget.com/chart.gif

Given the tiny amount spent compared to the tens of billions or more congress will authorize in a hearbeat, even during these economic times, it's amazing that there is so much time and argument spent about NASA in Congress.

They could eliminate the NASA budget entirely and it wouldn't change a thing in the big federal spending picture. And that argument goes for doubling the NASA budget too!

Yet NASA assures so much for this nations future, and humanity.

There are those that accept underfunding as a fact of life, that it will never change.

That has been a big mistake in my view.

We do not make our wheels squeek as well as others that get far more funding for questionable returns to the nation.

That needs to change.
Sure, let's squeak our wheels for more money, but don't hobble NASA by designing the architecture so it can only work with more money! That's sure to lead more and more failure.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. It's foolish to hope for the best and prepare only for the best.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/20/2010 08:12 PM
Prediction: They will come out in full support of the Senate Bill.
Here we go!

I suspect it'll be more praiseworthy of the process moving forward in general; don't imagine they're inclined to wade into the thick of a debate on details, but stay at the very top level--at least for now.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: zerm on 07/20/2010 09:12 PM
I've always been a cynic so far as the Congress is concerned, but so far this process has done a lot to restore my faith in the checks and balances.

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: 2552 on 07/20/2010 10:00 PM
There's a letter from Neil Armstrong, James Lovell and Eugene Cernan to Chairwoman Mikulski and Ranking Member Shelby coming out shortly.

Make of it what you will when it's published.

Letter is out:
http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=31271
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/20/2010 10:04 PM
There's a letter from Neil Armstrong, James Lovell and Eugene Cernan to Chairwoman Mikulski and Ranking Member Shelby coming out shortly.

Make of it what you will when it's published.

Letter is out:
http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=31271
Synopsis: They say both the House and Senate bills represent good progress, please fund NASA.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/20/2010 10:06 PM
There's a letter from Neil Armstrong, James Lovell and Eugene Cernan to Chairwoman Mikulski and Ranking Member Shelby coming out shortly.

Make of it what you will when it's published.

Letter is out:
http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=31271
Synopsis: They say both the House and Senate bills represent good progress, please fund NASA.

I am glad that they didn't take sides between the two bills.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rcoppola on 07/20/2010 10:25 PM
Now, is exactly the time to take sides. We are in the final stages of this game.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/20/2010 10:33 PM
Final Reported version of the Senate:
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/20/2010 10:59 PM
For FY2011 (comparison between old Senate bill and new, in millions)
old vs new:
total budget:19000 and 19000
Exploration: 3990 and 3868
  multipurpose crew vehicle: 1300 and 1120
  SLS: 1900 and 1631
  Exploration tech: 75 and 250 (YES!!! Still a lot less than the Feb 1 at 652, but something can actually be done with $250 million)
  Human Research: 215 and 155
  Commercial cargo: 144 and 300 (also good, new version is almost as much as the $312M in Feb 1st version)
  Commercial crew: 312 and 312
  Robotic Precursor: 44 and 100 (a marked increase)

Space Ops: 5508.5 and 5508.5 (same for both)

Science: 5005.6 and 5005.6 (same for both)

Aeronautics: 804.6 and 929.6
  Aeronautics research: 579.6 and 579.6 (same)
  Space Tech: 225 and 350 (yay! still less than the $572M of Feb 1st, but much better! Finally, investing in the future again!)
 
Education: 145.8 and 145.8 (same)
Cross-agency support: 3111.4 and 3111.4 (same)
Construction/Environmental: 394.3 and 394.3 same
Inspector general: 37 and 37 same


This looks considerably better.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/20/2010 11:21 PM
Not bad.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/20/2010 11:22 PM
Quote
SEC. 204. INDEPENDENT STUDY ON HUMAN EXPLORATION
 OF SPACE.


(b) ELEMENTS.—The review shall include—

(1) a broad spectrum of participation with representatives of a range of disciplines, backgrounds,
 and generations, including civil, commercial, international, scientific, and national security interests;

(2) input from NASA’s international partner
 discussions and NASA’s Human Exploration Framework Team;

(3) an examination of the relationship of national goals to foundational capabilities, robotic activities, technologies, and missions authorized by this
 Act;

(4) a review and prioritization of scientific, engineering, economic, and social science questions to
 be addressed by human space exploration
to improve
 the overall human condition; and

(5) findings and recommendations for fiscal
 years 2014 through 2023.


This is what we need. Not artificially-constrained "options" like the Aug. Commission, not a giant trade study like ESAS, but a list of actual priorities. Let's hope it is actually that...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/20/2010 11:25 PM
I've been noticing some glaring errors (i.e. numbers don't all add up) in the old version of the bill, and one or two in the new version of the Senate bill. Seriously, can anyone read or add anymore?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/20/2010 11:32 PM
New version looks good. More money, but not unreasonably so, for commercial, Money allocated for "new orion" BEO vehicle and plenty allocated for SDHLV (in fy 2011).

Constraints are such that expanding beyong a j13  or 140/j24x style rocket would be very hard, Great job Congress on keeping em on a short leash 8)

These numbers should prevent another ares fiasco. And Ares 1 is solidly off the table :D
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/20/2010 11:32 PM
Now, is exactly the time to take sides. We are in the final stages of this game.
Maybe from a time standpoint, but this is where the real work is going on and it's still early in this process; both of these re-authorization bills could still be amended -- the House bill during markup this week and then both bills could be further amended on the floor before they are voted on as a whole by each chamber.  (And before conference.)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/20/2010 11:54 PM
Senators and their staff cannot count. I compared the original February 1st budget with the old and the new Senate drafts. Here is the results:
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/20/2010 11:57 PM
For fy 2011:

$1,631,000,000 shall be for Space
18 Launch System and associated program and
19 other necessary support;


Over 5 years to 2016 thats: 8 billion, right on DIRECT's numbers ;) ;)
The first year (FY2011) it's $1.631 billion but FY2012 and FY2013 are around $2.6 billion, according to the new Senate draft. Over four years at $2.6 and one at $1.631 billion, that's a total of $12 billion.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/21/2010 12:08 AM
The case still needs to be made though....

We seriously underfund NASA!

A half a penny of federal discretionary spending dollar?
A tiny tiny portion of the federal budget?

http://www.federalbudget.com/chart.gif

Given the tiny amount spent compared to the tens of billions or more congress will authorize in a hearbeat, even during these economic times, it's amazing that there is so much time and argument spent about NASA in Congress.

They could eliminate the NASA budget entirely and it wouldn't change a thing in the big federal spending picture. And that argument goes for doubling the NASA budget too!

Yet NASA assures so much for this nations future, and humanity.

There are those that accept underfunding as a fact of life, that it will never change.

That has been a big mistake in my view.

We do not make our wheels squeek as well as others that get far more funding for questionable returns to the nation.

That needs to change.


You just don't get it.  NASA is not going to get the blank check of the 60's.   NASA did it job and helped win the Cold War.   It is not going to be funded for more than 20 billion per year, nor should it.  NASA can do its charter with that amount of money. There is no national need for it to have anymore.
NASA is not about lunar settlements. It is about supporting the USA directly.  It does the USA no good to establish colonies in space or on the moon.  They eventually will want to be self determined and therefore no use to the USA.
Space exploitation is better left to NGO's. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jorge on 07/21/2010 12:17 AM
Senators and their staff cannot count. I compared the original February 1st budget with the old and the new Senate drafts. Here is the results:

51D Mascot can correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the reason for the apparent discrepancies is that Authorization bills don't have to list *every* subcategory under a category.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/21/2010 12:29 AM
Senators and their staff cannot count. I compared the original February 1st budget with the old and the new Senate drafts. Here is the results:

51D Mascot can correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the reason for the apparent discrepancies is that Authorization bills don't have to list *every* subcategory under a category.
That's not the only discrepancy. In some cases, the sum of the parts is greater than the amount allotted for that category.

The only errors greater than $100,000 are in the old draft. Here are two examples in the old draft where the sum of the parts is greater than the amount allotted:


*FY2012 Aeronautics under is listed as $934.7 million, but the sum of the parts is $1034 million.

*Likewise, in FY2013, the Exploration budget parts add up to $5278.6 million, but is only allocated a total of $5028.6 million, a difference of $250 million.

There are smaller errors in the new draft (I caught one), which is disconcerting since it shows a sort of sloppiness even a draft which is supposed to be "reported." A similar error is in the Obama version, but at least Obama's February 1st bill doesn't purport to have 10 digits of accuracy like the bill drafts. Anyways, it doesn't inspire confidence in my leaders.  ;)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/21/2010 12:41 AM
For fy 2011:

$1,631,000,000 shall be for Space
18 Launch System and associated program and
19 other necessary support;


But for 2012 (i guess as contracts are awarded and paid for CCDEV)"

$2,650,000,000 shall be for Space
2 Launch System and associated program and
3 other necessary support;


hmm........

2013:
first off fiscal year 2013, $19,960,000,000

Thats almost 20 billion. Thats alot of bucks. ALOT.

second of all:

$2,640,000,000 shall be for Space
7 Launch System and associated program and
8 other necessary support;



It should be noteworthy that for 2012 and 2013, 1.4 billion are marked for "new orion" with 1.16 in fy2011.


Pretty good IMHO, all tho 2.64 for 2 years seems excessive (sidemount estimates caused this number?) its not overkill. Plenty of money remains for CCDEV and new tech, especially after the CCDEV and CCT contracts are awarded and the check's written.

In other words as CCDEV winds down and CCT begins, SDHLV winds up while "new orion" finishes out to completion.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/21/2010 12:45 AM
Still, Robot is correct overall HLV numbers are about 12 billion. While thats not enough for Ares 1 or 5 (or ethier 1 on its own) they are enough for:

DIRECT (too much actually)
 Sidmount (closer)

the "SH" models that use 5 seg with tank stretch (very close, still on the high end)

The "SH" models that use 5 seg strecth AND j2x (about right)



However, none of this would be sufficent for an r68 based HLV, a 10 meter core HLV, or more than 1 additional ares 1 flight, with an HLV to follow

Therefore: Ares 1/5 POR are both dead per this legislation

But the final bill will depend on the version reconciled with the house, where some ares huggers yet remain.

Bottom Line: I don't see any way for a core that does not use rs25e, which is good because this is by far the cheapest option. But due to the House bill, Ares isn't dead yet :(
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/21/2010 01:11 AM
I've been noticing some glaring errors (i.e. numbers don't all add up) in the old version of the bill, and one or two in the new version of the Senate bill. Seriously, can anyone read or add anymore?

Apparently not, hehe, even with seven pairs of eyes and a couple of Excel spreadsheets doing the arithmetic. If you can point to specific items in the version released on the website today, please PM me and I can pass them on to be sure they can be addressed before the bill is considered by the Senate.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/21/2010 01:17 AM
Senators and their staff cannot count. I compared the original February 1st budget with the old and the new Senate drafts. Here is the results:

51D Mascot can correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the reason for the apparent discrepancies is that Authorization bills don't have to list *every* subcategory under a category.

You are correct, Jorge, as can be seen in the bill, it doesn't drive down to the details and so you end up with rounding errors, which are considered "minimal and normal" in authorization bills, and are addressed in appropriations where they often drill down pretty deeply in specifics below the account and sub-account level generally not done in authorization.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/21/2010 01:18 AM
I've been noticing some glaring errors (i.e. numbers don't all add up) in the old version of the bill, and one or two in the new version of the Senate bill. Seriously, can anyone read or add anymore?

Apparently not, hehe, even with seven pairs of eyes and a couple of Excel spreadsheets doing the arithmetic. If you can point to specific items in the version released on the website today, please PM me and I can pass them on to be sure they can be addressed before the bill is considered by the Senate.
Okay, yes. For the new draft on page 14:
Quote
(4) For Aeronautics, $1,070,600,000, of which—
(A) $584,700,000 shall be for Aeronautics
Research; and
(B) $486,000,000 shall be for Space Technology.

A difference of $100,000.

584.7+486=1070.7, not 1070.6

Finally, a chance to make a difference! ;)

The old draft had considerable differences. Obviously, $100,000 isn't much in the total budget. Rounding error, for sure. But... can it be a rounding error in my favor? ;)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/21/2010 01:23 AM
I've been noticing some glaring errors (i.e. numbers don't all add up) in the old version of the bill, and one or two in the new version of the Senate bill. Seriously, can anyone read or add anymore?

Apparently not, hehe, even with seven pairs of eyes and a couple of Excel spreadsheets doing the arithmetic. If you can point to specific items in the version released on the website today, please PM me and I can pass them on to be sure they can be addressed before the bill is considered by the Senate.
Okay, yes. For the new draft on page 14:
Quote
(4) For Aeronautics, $1,070,600,000, of which—
(A) $584,700,000 shall be for Aeronautics
Research; and
(B) $486,000,000 shall be for Space Technology.

A difference of $100,000.

584.7+486=1070.7, not 1070.6

Finally, a chance to make a difference! ;)

The old draft had considerable differences. Obviously, $100,000 isn't much in the total budget. Rounding error, for sure. But... can it be a rounding error in my favor? ;)

EDIT: Oops, this is supposed to be a PM.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rjholling on 07/21/2010 01:44 AM
Is there any way money could be made available for development of a lander with this budget?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/21/2010 01:48 AM
Is there any way money could be made available for development of a lander with this budget?

Sure, payloads & technology demonstrators.
But we are still too far away to afford actually 'building' one at this point. And there really isn't any rush. In fact, I would counter that as soon as you 'land' on the moon again, you would face some criticism in certain circles that "we've done it again, let's fund domestic issues".

Lots of time to build the recycling technologies & perfect the Orion's systems so they can be applied to a lander.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 03:47 AM
Final Reported version of the Senate:

Senator Nelson had already mentionned this but the 150mt extension possibility for the HLV has been lowered to 130mt in the revised Senate bill. See page. 26.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Proponent on 07/21/2010 05:12 AM
Is there any way money could be made available for development of a lander with this budget?

Fund ISS, HLV, Orion and a lander all at the same time?  I don't think so.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Proponent on 07/21/2010 05:14 AM
What really annoys me :):) about both the Senate and House bills is that neither does anything at all to reduce spending on outreach to Muslim countries.  It's zero in the President's proposal; why don't the Senate and House reduce it below zero?  :) :) :)

EDIT: Added more smilies to make sure nobody takes this seriously.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/21/2010 05:44 AM
What really annoys me about both the Senate and House bills is that neither does anything at all to reduce spending on outreach to Muslim countries.  It's zero in the President's proposal; why don't the Senate and House reduce it below zero?  :) :) :)

Actually, you shouldn't be annoyed. Outreach to the whole world is mainly the ongoing duty of space exploration supporters like yourself.  :) NASA's critical role is to support you through its education budget. NASA is willing to take a backseat to your capable outreach efforts, and those of other space exploration supporters, because they are a little busy right now in designing America's near-term and long-term space exploration systems.  :)  :) But NASA is confident that if you do your part and every other space exploration supporter does whatever he or she can do to make the outreach to the world a success, then indeed many good things will happen... :)  :)

Cheers!


Edited: Added more smilies to make sure nobody takes this too seriously.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: 2552 on 07/21/2010 08:05 AM
Final Reported version of the Senate:

The SLS language on page 26 has changed:
Quote
(1) IN GENERAL.—The Space Launch System
developed pursuant to subsection (b) shall be de-
signed to have, at a minimum, the following:
(A) The initial capability of the core ele-
ments, without an upper stage, of lifting pay-
loads weighing between 70 tons and 100 tons

into low-Earth orbit in preparation for transit
for missions beyond low-Earth orbit.
(B) The capability to carry an integrated
upper Earth departure stage bringing the total
lift capability of the Space Launch System to
130 tons or more.


Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Proponent on 07/21/2010 09:10 AM
So in metric terms that's between 63 and 91 tonnes to LEO and 118 tonnes with an extra stage.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simcosmos on 07/21/2010 09:24 AM
Final Reported version of the Senate:

The SLS language on page 26 has changed:
Quote
(1) IN GENERAL.—The Space Launch System
developed pursuant to subsection (b) shall be de-
signed to have, at a minimum, the following:
(A) The initial capability of the core ele-
ments, without an upper stage, of lifting pay-
loads weighing between 70 tons and 100 tons

into low-Earth orbit in preparation for transit
for missions beyond low-Earth orbit.
(B) The capability to carry an integrated
upper Earth departure stage bringing the total
lift capability of the Space Launch System to
130 tons or more.

Although not sure if it wouldn't be better to stay with a slightly more conservative SDLV assumption
(and as noted on other posts / threads), one possible interpretation of the language used above (and in other sections) - assuming that the ton reference is about 'metric tons' - is that the aim could be very close to something like ESAS HLV recommendation: stretched 8.4m diameter core (with prop. load of about 950t - read 950000 kg - or even slightly greater) powered by 4 (up to 5 SSME) and 5 seg. SRB at the sides for the ~100t goal and then an upper stage with about 210t to 220t (220000 kg) prop or so added on top (powered by a variable number of something like J-2X vs mission design / objectives) for equal or greater than 130t goal delivered into a given injection target...

Something like what have represented in these outdated pictures:

(http://farm1.static.flickr.com/172/449343392_2c81e0c94c_o.jpg)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/simcosmos/449343392/

(http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1198/529811873_b1bd0753c4_o.jpg)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/simcosmos/529811873/

António
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kraisee on 07/21/2010 09:55 AM
130mT is a much more reasonable target IMHO.

And NASA needs to give very serious consideration to 2-launch for NEO.   It can save quite a bit of development money on the launcher side -- which means more for developing the spacecraft, the hab modules and THE SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS which are the real purpose of the mission.

Ross.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/21/2010 10:14 AM
I think that is 130 US tons which is 118mT which you may like even more ;).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Spacetime on 07/21/2010 11:54 AM
130mT is a much more reasonable target IMHO.

And NASA needs to give very serious consideration to 2-launch for NEO.   It can save quite a bit of development money on the launcher side -- which means more for developing the spacecraft, the hab modules and THE SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS which are the real purpose of the mission.

Ross.

I think the numbers being kicked around are more than 2. :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TrueBlueWitt on 07/21/2010 12:29 PM
What about spec'ing a "mission" TLI mass.. Instead of LEO tonnage w 2nd stage?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drkskywxlt on 07/21/2010 12:35 PM
For FY2011 (comparison between old Senate bill and new, in millions)
old vs new:
total budget:19000 and 19000
Exploration: 3990 and 3868
  multipurpose crew vehicle: 1300 and 1120
  SLS: 1900 and 1631
  Exploration tech: 75 and 250 (YES!!! Still a lot less than the Feb 1 at 652, but something can actually be done with $250 million)
  Human Research: 215 and 155
  Commercial cargo: 144 and 300 (also good, new version is almost as much as the $312M in Feb 1st version)
  Commercial crew: 312 and 312
  Robotic Precursor: 44 and 100 (a marked increase)

Space Ops: 5508.5 and 5508.5 (same for both)

Science: 5005.6 and 5005.6 (same for both)

Aeronautics: 804.6 and 929.6
  Aeronautics research: 579.6 and 579.6 (same)
  Space Tech: 225 and 350 (yay! still less than the $572M of Feb 1st, but much better! Finally, investing in the future again!)
 
Education: 145.8 and 145.8 (same)
Cross-agency support: 3111.4 and 3111.4 (same)
Construction/Environmental: 394.3 and 394.3 same
Inspector general: 37 and 37 same


This looks considerably better.

Agree.  That money for exploration tech and the robotic precursors should actually allow each program to launch their first mission in late 2014 (the original schedule derived from the President's budget).  The programs will still have to shrink over what was originally proposed, but they won't be empty shells if this budget stands. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kkattula on 07/21/2010 12:54 PM
Is there any way money could be made available for development of a lander with this budget?

Sure, payloads & technology demonstrators.
But we are still too far away to afford actually 'building' one at this point. And there really isn't any rush. In fact, I would counter that as soon as you 'land' on the moon again, you would face some criticism in certain circles that "we've done it again, let's fund domestic issues".

Lots of time to build the recycling technologies & perfect the Orion's systems so they can be applied to a lander.

Alternatively, one or more of the International Partners could develop a lander (Russia?), surface hab (ESA?), etc, with the US providing HLV, EDS and CEV.

Optimists may substitute Armadillo/Masten and Bigelow for Russia & ESA. :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/21/2010 01:22 PM
FYI, the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science is scheduled to meet at the top of the hour to markup the corresponding FY 2011 appropriations bill, which includes NASA.
http://appropriations.senate.gov/events.cfm?date=7/21/2010
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Stephan on 07/21/2010 01:44 PM
Now I need some help on the US legislative system :)

Do both commitees have to approve the very same bill (with the same terms) ?
And do both Houses have to vote the bill adopted by the commitees ?

And then what's the role of the WH, can POTUS reject the bill (and then
another round of negociations) ?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/21/2010 02:07 PM
Is there any way money could be made available for development of a lander with this budget?

Sure, payloads & technology demonstrators.
But we are still too far away to afford actually 'building' one at this point. And there really isn't any rush. In fact, I would counter that as soon as you 'land' on the moon again, you would face some criticism in certain circles that "we've done it again, let's fund domestic issues".

Lots of time to build the recycling technologies & perfect the Orion's systems so they can be applied to a lander.

Alternatively, one or more of the International Partners could develop a lander (Russia?), surface hab (ESA?), etc, with the US providing HLV, EDS and CEV.

Optimists may substitute Armadillo/Masten and Bigelow for Russia & ESA. :)


Some other optimists might add in South Korea, China, India, and quite a few other countries as both potential new ISS Partners and builders of landers, surface habs, mobile habs, power stations, Lunar jeeps, and telescopes.

It is not about simply returning to the Moon. It is how we will return and what we will do there that will make all the difference. If we want a permanent Lunar Base near those lovely ice covered craters, we should make the base a colony for everyone. The Internet is one of the tools that NASA and the other ISS Partners could use to help to organize such an international and open-ended mission. The preparations and actual colony and helpful Lunar robots would make a great reality TV show…

"Here humans from the planet Earth established our first permanent home on the Moon, July 2025 A.D. We are here to create new opportunities and knowledge and hope for every member of our species."

Maybe some members of Congress are thinking of something similar...

Cheers!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: pathfinder_01 on 07/21/2010 02:13 PM
Now I need some help on the US legislative system :)

Do both commitees have to approve the very same bill (with the same terms) ?
And do both Houses have to vote the bill adopted by the commitees ?

And then what's the role of the WH, can POTUS reject the bill (and then
another round of negociations) ?

Both houses of Congress (Senate and House) must pass a bill, but it does not become law until the President signs it.

The President of the Untied States has three choices. He can sign a law which makes it a law the moment he signs it. He can veto a law, and his veto can be overturned by a 2/3 vote of both houses of congress (not likely). The third thing he can do is called a pocket veto. If the President does not sign a bill within 10 days and congress is in secession then it becomes law. If however congress adjourns and he does not sign the bill, it is automatically vetoed.

Right now the House is working on it’s version of the bill. Both House and Senate versions must be reconciled by committee before the whole House and the whole Senate votes on it. Also the President can only Veto a bill as a whole (He can’t veto a part of a bill) so there will likely be non space things thrown in the budget.

Due to it being an election year the budget is not likely to be passed before October(when the fiscal year ends). However if the Democrats lose esp. if they lose the house then the outgoing congress will vote in a budget to prevent the incoming congress from being able to change things until the budget expires.

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 02:26 PM
Is there any way money could be made available for development of a lander with this budget?

Sure, payloads & technology demonstrators.
But we are still too far away to afford actually 'building' one at this point. And there really isn't any rush. In fact, I would counter that as soon as you 'land' on the moon again, you would face some criticism in certain circles that "we've done it again, let's fund domestic issues".

Lots of time to build the recycling technologies & perfect the Orion's systems so they can be applied to a lander.

Alternatively, one or more of the International Partners could develop a lander (Russia?), surface hab (ESA?), etc, with the US providing HLV, EDS and CEV.

Optimists may substitute Armadillo/Masten and Bigelow for Russia & ESA. :)

ESA and Russia seem more concerned with extending the life of the ISS than BEO. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/21/2010 02:33 PM
Live Streaming of Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Markup Of NASA Budget   http://appropriations.senate.gov/
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 02:35 PM
Live Sreaming of Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Markup Of NASA Budget   http://appropriations.senate.gov/

Thanks. Has it started?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/21/2010 02:36 PM
Live Sreaming of Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Markup Of NASA Budget   http://appropriations.senate.gov/

Thanks. Has it started?
  Yes. It started at 10:00AM.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 02:37 PM
Live Sreaming of Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Markup Of NASA Budget   http://appropriations.senate.gov/

Thanks. Has it started?
  Yes. It started at 10:00AM.

Thanks. It's actually over. But it will probably be archived.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kraisee on 07/21/2010 02:38 PM
130mT is a much more reasonable target IMHO.

And NASA needs to give very serious consideration to 2-launch for NEO.   It can save quite a bit of development money on the launcher side -- which means more for developing the spacecraft, the hab modules and THE SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS which are the real purpose of the mission.

Ross.

I think the numbers being kicked around are more than 2. :)

They don't need to be.

I sure hope NASA learned its lesson from Ares:   Stop planning uber-projects which have no hope of being funded properly.

Ross.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 02:50 PM
Live Sreaming of Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Markup Of NASA Budget   http://appropriations.senate.gov/

Thanks. Has it started?
  Yes. It started at 10:00AM.

Did anybody watch this?

There is an article on the meeting (prior to it), here:
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/2010/07/nasa-compromise-holds-for-now.html
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/21/2010 02:56 PM
Is there any way money could be made available for development of a lander with this budget?

Sure, payloads & technology demonstrators.
But we are still too far away to afford actually 'building' one at this point. And there really isn't any rush. In fact, I would counter that as soon as you 'land' on the moon again, you would face some criticism in certain circles that "we've done it again, let's fund domestic issues".

Lots of time to build the recycling technologies & perfect the Orion's systems so they can be applied to a lander.

Alternatively, one or more of the International Partners could develop a lander (Russia?), surface hab (ESA?), etc, with the US providing HLV, EDS and CEV.

Optimists may substitute Armadillo/Masten and Bigelow for Russia & ESA. :)

ESA and Russia seem more concerned with extending the life of the ISS than BEO. 

First step, second step, third step, fourth step... Robust support for the ISS and the extension of its mission are just the beginning. NEOs need to be explored and clearly understood in order to decrease their risk to the planet Earth. The ESA, Russia, Japan, Canada, America, and other countries know that water on the Moon is too valuable to ignore. Congress is paying some attention to space exploration... The next few decades should be interesting.

Cheers!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 03:06 PM
Live Sreaming of Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Markup Of NASA Budget   http://appropriations.senate.gov/

Thanks. Has it started?
  Yes. It started at 10:00AM.

Did anybody watch this?

There is an article on the meeting (prior to it), here:
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/2010/07/nasa-compromise-holds-for-now.html

It seems that nobody watched this. It will eventually be archived (probably later today), here:
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm


Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 03:16 PM
Final Reported version of the Senate:

It's also available online, here:
http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=20a7a8bd-50f4-4474-bf1d-f0a6a8824b01
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: KSC Engineer on 07/21/2010 04:34 PM
Final Reported version of the Senate:

It's also available online, here:
http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=20a7a8bd-50f4-4474-bf1d-f0a6a8824b01


Shelby: CJS Bill Sustains Human Space Flight
Share
 Today at 9:46am
WASHINGTON, D. C. Wednesday, July 21, 2010 U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), ranking member of the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee (CJS), today announced subcommittee approval of the fiscal year 2011 CJS Appropriations bill, which restores significant funding for NASA’s human space flight program. Following today’s action by the subcommittee, the bill will now go to the full Appropriations Committee for consideration.

“The Administration canceled the only realistic approach for the United States to return to low earth orbit and beyond,” said Shelby. “The President’s budget proposal surrendered our nation’s leadership in space to the Russians, Chinese, and Indians and instead chose to set up an entitlement program for the so-called commercial space industry.

“This proposal was simply unacceptable. The overarching point is simple: No so-called commercial space company has ever carried anything successfully to the space station, much less safely launch and return a human being. We cannot risk human lives or the entire future of the space program by deploying an unproven commercial crew concept. The risk is too great.

“The Administration’s plan was not a responsible or realistic approach to human space flight and was not approved by the subcommittee. Instead, the bill restores NASA to its historical purpose, a preeminent leader in space flight.

“The CJS bill solidifies American’s human space flight program by funding a robust heavy lift vehicle based on demonstrated technological reality.”

The Administration’s Fiscal Year 2011 budget request terminated NASA’s Constellation program. This bill reaffirms our nation’s commitment to a robust human space exploration program by providing $1.9 billion to begin to build an integrated heavy lift launch vehicle system that will be designed, managed, and integrated by the Marshall Space Flight Center. This heavy lift rocket, when completed in 2016, will ensure that NASA begins to explore well beyond low earth orbit where we have been stuck for decades.

Senator Shelby was instrumental in increasing the $1.6 billion funding level recently proposed by the Senate Commerce Committee for a heavy lift rocket to $1.9 billion under this bill and specifying Marshall Space Flight Center as the lead NASA Center for the heavy lift vehicle.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TrueBlueWitt on 07/21/2010 04:38 PM
Big Shocker on the MSFC Lead.. although does this mean "In-line" is now also In-the-bag?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/21/2010 04:43 PM
I think he's as mad as hell and not going to take it anymore ;).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/21/2010 04:44 PM
Well, congratulations, DIRECT team, it looks like you guys are in the newest Senate bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/21/2010 04:48 PM
It seems that nobody watched this. It will eventually be archived (probably later today), here:
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm
No "breakthrough" compromise leading up to this -- and it's still going to come down to bills and votes.  The news is going to be the full text of the CJS Senate appropriations bill as reported out of the committee to the Senate floor.  And then we'll have seen the initial versions of three of the four bills (all of which can still be amended further, particularly the appropriations bills).

Edit: this is the subcommittee markup; the full Appropriations committee markup is tomorrow (22 July) afternoon.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 04:49 PM
Live Sreaming of Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Markup Of NASA Budget   http://appropriations.senate.gov/

Thanks. Has it started?
  Yes. It started at 10:00AM.

Did anybody watch this?

There is an article on the meeting (prior to it), here:
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/2010/07/nasa-compromise-holds-for-now.html

It seems that nobody watched this. It will eventually be archived (probably later today), here:
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm

The webcast is now archived. You can listen to it here:
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=d2453d40-c14f-4fe1-a9c1-069c3330ffcb
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/21/2010 04:52 PM
Subcommittee markup summary:
http://appropriations.senate.gov/news.cfm?method=news.view&id=56660e39-3811-4133-816f-93392e152437

The excerpt from the press release:
Quote
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) - The bill provides $19 billion for NASA, $278 million above the Fiscal Year 2010 level and equal to the President’s request.  The total funding includes $1.6 billion for Space Shuttle operations; $2.78 billion for Space Station operations; $3 billion for development of the next generation Crew Launch Vehicle and Crew Exploration Vehicle; $5 billion for science; and $904 million for aeronautics and space technology research.  The bill restructures NASA’s human spaceflight programs, providing for a new heavy lift launch vehicle and crew capsule for exploring beyond low-Earth orbit, extending the life of the International Space Station through 2020, supporting the burgeoning commercial space industry, investing in new technology development, and allowing one additional Space Shuttle flight, if determined to be safe.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 05:05 PM
Mikulski said that they supported "commercial cargo". She stressed "commercial cargo" in order to mean that they did not support commercial crew. The full committee will consider the appropriation bill tommorow at 2:30PM. 

Some compromise... So much for the appropriators and the authorizors being on the same side.

I believe that Hutchison is on the full committee. Hopefully, she will defend the compromise bill. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/21/2010 05:10 PM
Does "integrated heavy lift launch vehicle system" mean a single vehicle, and not a system of vehicles? No way for this to leave a back-door for Ares I to squeeze back in as part of a "system"?

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/21/2010 05:15 PM
It sure does but the House needs to be reconciled to it as they want to continue with the PoR. It also means no sidemount either. I also wonder whose hide Shelby took the extra $300m from ?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Ben the Space Brit on 07/21/2010 05:18 PM
Does "integrated heavy lift launch vehicle system" mean a single vehicle, and not a system of vehicles? No way for this to leave a back-door for Ares I to squeeze back in as part of a "system"?

To me, it means an LV family with the maximum amount of commonality between them, scalable to different sizes and missions.  A good example of this would be the D-SDLV In-line.  However, and I can't stress this too much, to someone else it might mean something different.  Depending on the exact details and what you mean by 'maximum commonality', then, yes, the ALS could fit the description.  That doesn't make it any more affordable but...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/21/2010 05:25 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 05:28 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/21/2010 05:33 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.
Stupid. Yeah, we'd much rather support the Russian economy...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/21/2010 05:34 PM
Well, if true then they are moving closer to the House version.   More for HLV, kill CC.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: cro-magnon gramps on 07/21/2010 05:34 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.

could it be that they are going to side with the other side of the house, re the loans guarrantee plan for Commerical Crew?? this would possibly slow down CC for some and make it more difficult if not impossible for others; not saying who, but I suspect venture capital in this area will be extremely lean;
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/21/2010 05:35 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.

Wouldn't surprise me if that would push the president into a veto.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: OpsAnalyst on 07/21/2010 05:41 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.

Very hard to tell.  MC(P)V was at 1.4 coming out of Authorization with HLV at 1.6  The press release says "3B" for launch and crew vehicle.  Just doing the math they could have reduced MCV to 1.1B and sent the plus up to HLV.  Or it could be CC, since standing pat on the 300 or so for cargo and eliminating CC would buy it back, as you point out - although that's not too hot for the "compromise" component of all this. Or it could be some other combination - I think ISS is a bit down in this version as well.

Bottom line is won't know until we see the text -  (or 51DMascot chimes in!).  Text release is unlikely before the whole Appropriations Committee takes it up tomorrow - unless staffers are completely tanked on caffeine...  :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 05:46 PM
Well, if true then they are moving closer to the House version.   More for HLV, kill CC.

I am inferring this from her comments at 30:05 of the webcast. The NASA part starts at 29:30.

$19B overall.
$5B for discovery and earth science. She must have made a mistake on this but that's what she said.
$570 million for aeronautics.
Funding for 1 additionnal Shuttle flight.
Extension of the ISS to 2020.
Growing commercial industry that will deliver cargo to the ISS.
HLV and capsule to carry our astronauts to BEO.
Measures to protect the safety of U.S. astronauts.

http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=d2453d40-c14f-4fe1-a9c1-069c3330ffcb
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Stephan on 07/21/2010 05:49 PM
Both houses of Congress (Senate and House) must pass a bill, but it does not become law until the President signs it.

The President of the Untied States has three choices. He can sign a law which makes it a law the moment he signs it. He can veto a law, and his veto can be overturned by a 2/3 vote of both houses of congress (not likely). The third thing he can do is called a pocket veto. If the President does not sign a bill within 10 days and congress is in secession then it becomes law. If however congress adjourns and he does not sign the bill, it is automatically vetoed.

Right now the House is working on it’s version of the bill. Both House and Senate versions must be reconciled by committee before the whole House and the whole Senate votes on it. Also the President can only Veto a bill as a whole (He can’t veto a part of a bill) so there will likely be non space things thrown in the budget.

Due to it being an election year the budget is not likely to be passed before October(when the fiscal year ends). However if the Democrats lose esp. if they lose the house then the outgoing congress will vote in a budget to prevent the incoming congress from being able to change things until the budget expires.
Thanks for the answer pathfinder.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drkskywxlt on 07/21/2010 05:54 PM
Quote

Shelby: CJS Bill Sustains Human Space Flight
Share
 Today at 9:46am
“The Administration canceled the only realistic approach for the United States to return to low earth orbit and beyond,” said Shelby. “The President’s budget proposal surrendered our nation’s leadership in space to the Russians, Chinese, and Indians and instead chose to set up an entitlement program for the so-called commercial space industry.

“This proposal was simply unacceptable. The overarching point is simple: No so-called commercial space company has ever carried anything successfully to the space station, much less safely launch and return a human being. We cannot risk human lives or the entire future of the space program by deploying an unproven commercial crew concept. The risk is too great.

 How much had the US launched into space when Kennedy made his charge to go to the Moon?  You fund these companies to DEMONSTRATE their capabilities.  If they fail, they get no more money.  Shelby's going to get his mega-jobs program for MSFC and when we have nothing flying in 2016 and haven't launched an American into space in 5 years, Congress will go crawling back to SpaceX and Orbital and beg forgiveness.  I hope Elon rubs these quotes in his face when that time comes. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 06:07 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.

Wouldn't surprise me if that would push the president into a veto.

cheers, Martin

It's unlikely that the President will veto the entire FY2011 Budget appropriation. This will have to be fought in Congress.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: cro-magnon gramps on 07/21/2010 06:15 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.

Wouldn't surprise me if that would push the president into a veto.

cheers, Martin

It's unlikely that the President will veto the entire FY2011 Budget appropriation. This will have to be fought in Congress.

the problem as I see it, the NASA FY11 Appropriations is bundled into a 60B Justice, Commerce and Science Bill, going to be hard for the President to Veto this, without creating a boondogle for the Democrates come the Novemeber vote; this bill covers everything from the cop on the beat up to and including Homeland Security; tell me that the people will allow him to get away with veto on all that;
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 06:18 PM
Yeah, the $300 million plus up for HLV is a little scary.   I wonder what was raided?   But I don't follow it closely, maybe that was already accounted for...

Very likely commercial crew. Mikulski said that they only support commercial cargo.

Wouldn't surprise me if that would push the president into a veto.

cheers, Martin

It's unlikely that the President will veto the entire FY2011 Budget appropriation. This will have to be fought in Congress.

the problem as I see it, the NASA FY11 Appropriations is bundled into a 60B Justice, Commerce and Science Bill, going to be hard for the President to Veto this, without creating a boondogle for the Democrates come the Novemeber vote; this bill covers everything from the cop on the beat up to and including Homeland Security; tell me that the people will allow him to get away with veto on all that;

I think that the Commerce and Science Appropriation Bill later gets bundled with other appropriation bills in one large appropriation bill for the entire FY2011 Budget.

This is a long process and many amendments are possible along the way. Stay tuned...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: wronkiew on 07/21/2010 06:29 PM
Quote
$19B overall.
$5B for discovery and earth science. She must have made a mistake on this but that's what she said.
$570 million for aeronautics.
Funding for 1 additionnal Shuttle flight.
Extension of the ISS to 2020.
Growing commercial industry that will deliver cargo to the ISS.
HLV and capsule to carry our astronauts to BEO.
Measures to protect the safety of U.S. astronauts.

Protecting them by taking away their ride to orbit. Nice. Are they going to ground the T-38s too?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/21/2010 06:45 PM
Well, both Boeing and SpaceX claim that they'd be developing their crew capsules anyway for "commercial customers". Here's their chance to put their own money where their mouth is...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/21/2010 06:48 PM
Well, both Boeing and SpaceX claim that they'd be developing their crew capsules anyway for "commercial customers". Here's their chance to put their own money where their mouth is...
So it's a good idea to defund commercial crew entirely for 2011 just to increase funding for the HLV and Orion by a measly 10%?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/21/2010 07:11 PM
I think that the Commerce and Science Appropriation Bill later gets bundled with other appropriation bills in one large appropriation bill for the entire FY2011 Budget.

This is a long process and many amendments are possible along the way. Stay tuned...
The CJS appropriations bill doesn't have to be bundled with other appropriation bills, but it has been in several recent years.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/21/2010 07:16 PM
I doubt it would be vetoed.   The WH already revealed their stick when Garver linked the funding boost to CC.    If the WH is displeased they may simply lose interest and reduce funding next year.  It will be left to the Congress to restore the funding year after year.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/21/2010 07:47 PM
Wouldn't surprise me if that would push the president into a veto.

It's unlikely that the President will veto the entire FY2011 Budget appropriation. This will have to be fought in Congress.

D'oh! You're right, of course.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/21/2010 08:08 PM
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/

This says $562 million for commercial activities.   Only $250m of it for commercial crew.

Shelby quotes:

“At the end of the day, NASA is going to have to show a lot of vision,” Shelby said.

Indeed, Shelby reluctantly supported funding for commercial spaceflight, noting Wednesday that “when you put a legislative package together, you have to consider other people’s views.”
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 08:17 PM
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/

This says $562 million for commercial activities.   Only $250m of it for commercial crew.

Shelby quotes:

“At the end of the day, NASA is going to have to show a lot of vision,” Shelby said.

Indeed, Shelby reluctantly supported funding for commercial spaceflight, noting Wednesday that “when you put a legislative package together, you have to consider other people’s views.”

That's actually a lot better than what I expected from Shelby. The NASA Authorization bill had $312 million for commercial crew for FY2011.  So it's a cut of $62 million. The FY2011 funding for commercial crew was expected to be lower in its first year. Hopefully, it will go up to $500 million in FY2012.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/21/2010 08:22 PM
I doubt it would be vetoed.   The WH already revealed their stick when Garver linked the funding boost to CC.    If the WH is displeased they may simply lose interest and reduce funding next year.  It will be left to the Congress to restore the funding year after year.
It doesn't sound like there's any public veto threat for either type of bill, but there are two types of bills "in play" right now.  An authorization bill for only NASA, which we've seen full text versions of from both House and Senate.  And an appropriations bill from today's Senate subcommittee markup of which NASA is only a part.  We haven't seen the text of the Senate CJS appropriations bill; the House subcommittee marked up a bill at the end of last month before the "compromise" was publicized.  (I don't know that the House appropriations bill has been marked up by the full committee yet.)

Vetoing either or both bills (or threatening to do so) would be different matters.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/21/2010 08:28 PM
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/

This says $562 million for commercial activities.   Only $250m of it for commercial crew.

Shelby quotes:

“At the end of the day, NASA is going to have to show a lot of vision,” Shelby said.

Indeed, Shelby reluctantly supported funding for commercial spaceflight, noting Wednesday that “when you put a legislative package together, you have to consider other people’s views.”

That's actually a lot better than what I expected from Shelby. The NASA Authorization bill had $312 million for commercial crew for FY2011.  So it's a cut of $62 million. The FY2011 funding for commercial crew was expected to be lower in its first year. Hopefully, it will go up to $500 million in FY2012.


Yeah.  But this still leaves $250 million of the HLV boost coming from somewhere.  Should be interesting.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 08:29 PM
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/

This says $562 million for commercial activities.   Only $250m of it for commercial crew.

Shelby quotes:

“At the end of the day, NASA is going to have to show a lot of vision,” Shelby said.

Indeed, Shelby reluctantly supported funding for commercial spaceflight, noting Wednesday that “when you put a legislative package together, you have to consider other people’s views.”

From the same article:

Quote
For months, Shelby has threatened to torpedo the new direction for NASA and only came on board after lengthy negotiations with other lawmakers with ties to NASA, particularly Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas, according to congressional sources.

So we owe thanks to Senator Hutchison and her staff (Jeff Bingham) for the compromise which should finally fund commercial crew. This was long overdue.  Good work.

P.S. I apologize for scaring people before, I took Mikulski's comments to mean that they would only fund commercial cargo. Thankfully, this is not the case.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/21/2010 09:08 PM
Mikulski said that they supported "commercial cargo". She stressed "commercial cargo" in order to mean that they did not support commercial crew. The full committee will consider the appropriation bill tommorow at 2:30PM. 

Some compromise... So much for the appropriators and the authorizors being on the same side.

I believe that Hutchison is on the full committee. Hopefully, she will defend the compromise bill. 

Modifying this post, since the latest from yg1968 was being posted as I was writing this:

Really not sure how you gleaned those impressions from a very top-level discussion of some of the high points of a mark-up. In point of fact, as I review the account numbers, this is the closest that the appropriators for NASA have marked to levels provided in a NASA authorization bill (and one not even formally enacted yet!) than I can recall in thirty-five years of being in the business! This mark-up result, when you see the details, SOLIDLY supports the Commerce compromise bill reported out last week. It clearly demonstrates Senate solidarity between the authorizers and the appropriators!

BTW, They did NOT eliminate commercial crew, but did reduce it to $250m for FY 2011, from $312m in the Senate Commerce compromise. Nothing done in this mark-up that would undermine that compromise!

And MSFC being the lead on rocket development is no surprise and nothing new..it's what they DO and always have. Where and how a "program" office is set up and divided up, will be a function of the eventual architecture determined for the system and its components.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/21/2010 09:08 PM
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_space_thewritestuff/

This says $562 million for commercial activities.   Only $250m of it for commercial crew.

Shelby quotes:

“At the end of the day, NASA is going to have to show a lot of vision,” Shelby said.

Indeed, Shelby reluctantly supported funding for commercial spaceflight, noting Wednesday that “when you put a legislative package together, you have to consider other people’s views.”
My read of the situation is that they are getting past the denial/anger stages WRT the commercial providers "12 step" program, courtesy of the administration.

There is a creeping realization that if the gap becomes politically important again (viz. the "blame game"), injuring the most likely means to close the gap is an unacceptable liability.

The House has not yet caught up to the Senate in understanding the new political realities of Shuttle close out. In attempting to get in late hits in this conflict, the net effect is to hasten the demise of govt HSF by a grand overreach in the opposite direction of the Senate. So the Senate version drifts more to compensate for this towards the administration's side, in anticipation of conference. The situation is highly unstable.

The longer this goes on, the greater likelihood of bad choices for both govt/commercial HSF, as the govt HSF is less and less dominated by BEO and the ability for more near term resilience for commercial providers occurs.

And finally at the end of the process, when they discover (if they do) that the fixed (and dev) costs of govt HSF is not in keeping with future budgets, and that keeping the old deals they have/are fighting for ... are unaffordable ... they may find it hard to lock the admin into a multi year plan that they require ... that they have to accept full blame for/close down ... because a)it like CxP falls behind/cost overruns and b) straddles BEO/LEO too much while seeming like a pink elephant to the anemically financed but more flashy commercial guys.

Then it looks like all they did was enforce "earmarks". Again. Sigh.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 09:19 PM
Mikulski said that they supported "commercial cargo". She stressed "commercial cargo" in order to mean that they did not support commercial crew. The full committee will consider the appropriation bill tommorow at 2:30PM. 

Some compromise... So much for the appropriators and the authorizors being on the same side.

I believe that Hutchison is on the full committee. Hopefully, she will defend the compromise bill. 

Really not sure how you gleaned those impressions from a very top-level discussion of some of the high points of a mark-up. In point of fact, as I review the account numbers, this is the closest that the appropriators for NASA have marked to levels provided in a NASA authorization bill (and one not even formally enacted yet!) than I can recall in thirty-five years of being in the business! This mark-up result, when you see the details, SOLIDLY supports the Commerce compromise bill reported out last week. It clearly demonstrates Senate solidarity between the authorizers and the appropriators!

BTW, They did NOT eliminate commercial crew, but did reduce it to $250m for FY 2011, from $312m in the Senate Commerce compromise. Nothing done in this mark-up that would undermine that compromise!

And MSFC being the lead on rocket development is no surprise and nothing new..it's what they DO and always have. Where and how a "program" office is set up and divided up, will be a function of the eventual architecture determined for the system and its components.

Yes, I made a mistake and apologize for it. I shouldn't have inferred things from one sentence that Mikulski said and should have waited for the numbers to come out. I am glad that $250M was appropriated for commercial crew. Thanks for your comments.

The Orlando Sentinel said that Senator Hutchison managed to persuade Shelby of going along with this compromise.  Congratulations to her and her staff for making this happen. Good work. It's a clever compromise. It also goes along with what Elon Musk has proposed on many occassions: commercial crew concentrates on LEO (and the ISS) and NASA concentrates on BEO.   
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/21/2010 09:23 PM
Mikulski said that they supported "commercial cargo". She stressed "commercial cargo" in order to mean that they did not support commercial crew. The full committee will consider the appropriation bill tommorow at 2:30PM. 

Some compromise... So much for the appropriators and the authorizors being on the same side.

I believe that Hutchison is on the full committee. Hopefully, she will defend the compromise bill. 

Modifying this post, since the latest from yg1968 was being posted as I was writing this:

Really not sure how you gleaned those impressions from a very top-level discussion of some of the high points of a mark-up. In point of fact, as I review the account numbers, this is the closest that the appropriators for NASA have marked to levels provided in a NASA authorization bill (and one not even formally enacted yet!) than I can recall in thirty-five years of being in the business! This mark-up result, when you see the details, SOLIDLY supports the Commerce compromise bill reported out last week. It clearly demonstrates Senate solidarity between the authorizers and the appropriators!

BTW, They did NOT eliminate commercial crew, but did reduce it to $250m for FY 2011, from $312m in the Senate Commerce compromise. Nothing done in this mark-up that would undermine that compromise!

And MSFC being the lead on rocket development is no surprise and nothing new..it's what they DO and always have. Where and how a "program" office is set up and divided up, will be a function of the eventual architecture determined for the system and its components.
Is there launguage in the detailed Senate NASA Appropriations Subcommittee Bill which states that the new HLV will be a SD-HLV? I know this language was in the Senate NASA Authorization Bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 09:32 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the authorization bill. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/21/2010 09:46 PM
For the curious, I've tallied up the total spending on various items for FY2011-FY2013 (the only three years covered by the Senate draft bill):

Space Launch System: $7.15B (1.9+2.65+2.6)

Multi-purpose crew vehicle/Orion: $4B (1.3+1.3+1.4)

Mid/high-TRL exploration technology, heavy-lift, exploration architectures, and demonstrations: $975.9M (WH proposed $5.45B)

Robotic exploration precursor missions: 44+100+100= $244M (WH proposed $1.33B)

Low/mid-TRL space technology: 225+450+500= $1.175B (WH proposed $2.64B)

Commercial crew: 312+400+500= $1.2B (WH proposed $3.3B)

For reference, I've tallied up the FY2011-FY2013 numbers for the final Senate authorization bill (the last pre-Appropriations bill):

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=20a7a8bd-50f4-4474-bf1d-f0a6a8824b01

Space Launch System: 1.631+2.65+2.64=$6.921B

Multi-purpose crew vehicle/Orion: 1.12+1.4+1.4=$3.92B

Mid/high-TRL exploration technology, heavy-lift, exploration architectures, and demonstrations: 250+437.3+449=$1.1363B (WH proposed $5.45B)

Robotic exploration precursor missions: 100+100+100= $300M (WH $1.33B)

Low/mid-TRL space technology: 350+486+500= $1.336B (WH $2.64B)

Commercial crew: 312+400+515= $1.227B (WH $3.3B)

Also, in the Education section, whose top-line is remaining the same, there's $25M/year for the pre-existing "Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research" which I hadn't seen in the earlier draft of the bill. It seems like an interesting program, and this amount is substantially higher than the ~$10M/year the WH sought for it.

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/21/2010 09:47 PM
Mikulski said that they supported "commercial cargo". She stressed "commercial cargo" in order to mean that they did not support commercial crew. The full committee will consider the appropriation bill tommorow at 2:30PM. 

Some compromise... So much for the appropriators and the authorizors being on the same side.

I believe that Hutchison is on the full committee. Hopefully, she will defend the compromise bill. 

Modifying this post, since the latest from yg1968 was being posted as I was writing this:

Really not sure how you gleaned those impressions from a very top-level discussion of some of the high points of a mark-up. In point of fact, as I review the account numbers, this is the closest that the appropriators for NASA have marked to levels provided in a NASA authorization bill (and one not even formally enacted yet!) than I can recall in thirty-five years of being in the business! This mark-up result, when you see the details, SOLIDLY supports the Commerce compromise bill reported out last week. It clearly demonstrates Senate solidarity between the authorizers and the appropriators!

BTW, They did NOT eliminate commercial crew, but did reduce it to $250m for FY 2011, from $312m in the Senate Commerce compromise. Nothing done in this mark-up that would undermine that compromise!

And MSFC being the lead on rocket development is no surprise and nothing new..it's what they DO and always have. Where and how a "program" office is set up and divided up, will be a function of the eventual architecture determined for the system and its components.

Replying to myself...tells you what sort of several weeks it's been! 

Here are the basic puts and takes, comparing preliminary--unofficial--notes from the appropriations mark-up with the Commerce-reported compromise authorization bill:

Space Launch System (HLLV) increased from $1.631B to $1,900B; Commercial Cargo increased from $300m to $312m; Space Flight and Support up from $1.119B to $1.144B; and Inspector General up from $37m to $38m.

Accomplished by taking $20m from Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle, $100m from Exploration Tech Development, $62m from Commercial Crew, $55m from Robotic Precursors, and $25m from Space Technology Development, $35.6m from Cross-Agency Support, and $13m from Construction and Remediation.

All other accounts marked at the same levels as the Commerce compromise bill (Science, ISS Ops, Shuttle, Aeronautics, and Education.)

Some "rounding errors" might mean some variances when adding and subtracting to get totals, but these are pretty close.



Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/21/2010 09:54 PM
Thanks for the early look, 51D Mascot.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/21/2010 10:00 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/21/2010 10:05 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/21/2010 10:11 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?

I am sure you know this but I think the over-arching question is, what specific legal mechanism is there to prevent the program deviating so far afield as it did before.

Let's not forget that Ares-1 as originally envisioned was simpler, and the Ares-V actually at one point did have 5 SSME's?

If they play the same games as before then I can guarantee NASA will be put out of business by the taxpayers, well at least this one :)

and thank you enormously for all your work. Your efforts have certainly made the very late nights worth it and provided more than a little hope.

Thank you


Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 10:13 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?

Yes, thanks. Will you need to adjust the numbers in the NASA Authorization bill for FY2011 in order for them to correspond to the FY2011 appropriation bill? My guess is that it is not really necessary to do so.

For FY2012, the numbers in the FY2012 appropriation bill should have precedence over the numbers in the NASA Authorization bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 10:33 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?

I am still not 51D Mascot but I am almost sure that the SD-HLV requirement will not be contradicted in the appropriation bill. Appropriation legislation will generally not contradict the language in an authorization bill. Sometimes money that is authorized will not be funded by the appropriators. In that case, NASA will ignore it. But the HLV is funded in the appropriation bill. So this is not the case. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/21/2010 10:40 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?

I am still not 51D Mascot but I am almost sure that the SD-HLV requirement will not be contradicted in the appropriation bill. Appropriation legislation will generally not contradict the language in an authorization bill. Sometimes money that is authorized will not be funded by the appropriators. In that case, NASA will ignore it. But the HLV is funded in the appropriation bill. So this is not the case. 

I can't stress this enough, up until about a month ago there were still very vocal and high ranking voices that would tell you the Ares-I/V was Shuttle Derived, how does the language prevent this same thing from occurring once again.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/21/2010 10:41 PM
I am still not 51D Mascot but I am almost sure that the SD-HLV requirement will not be contradicted in the appropriation bill. Appropriation legislation will generally not contradict the language in an authorization bill. Sometimes money that is authorized will not be funded by the appropriators. In that case, NASA will ignore it. But the HLV is funded in the appropriation bill. So this is not the case. 
There are still the matters of which of these bills gets to the finish line.  Not sure it's a guarantee that both will yet.  Full passage of appropriations may still be up in the air.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/21/2010 10:54 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?

I am still not 51D Mascot but I am almost sure that the SD-HLV requirement will not be contradicted in the appropriation bill. Appropriation legislation will generally not contradict the language in an authorization bill. Sometimes money that is authorized will not be funded by the appropriators. In that case, NASA will ignore it. But the HLV is funded in the appropriation bill. So this is not the case. 

I can't stress this enough, up until about a month ago there were still very vocal and high ranking voices that would tell you the Ares-I/V was Shuttle Derived, how does the language prevent this same thing from occurring once again.

Ares V lite would probably still fit the bill. But I suspect that Bolden and the President want the cheapest HLV possible.  So Direct becomes a front runner because of this.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/21/2010 11:00 PM
I can't stress this enough, up until about a month ago there were still very vocal and high ranking voices that would tell you the Ares-I/V was Shuttle Derived, how does the language prevent this same thing from occurring once again.

I'm worried about that too.  But the language specifically requires 75-100 tons to LEO.  That rules out Ares-I (too small) and Ares-V (too big).  Another clause requires the design to support future growth to 130 tons, which would rule out side-mount.  Other clauses require currently existing (or in progress) engines and boosters, so that would rule out RS68A/Regen (ala Augustine Ares-V "Lite"). 

So what's left that can fit within all of these constraints?  Only inline SD-HLV, as far as I can see, using SSME and 8.4m tanks.  Possibly using stretched 8.4m tankage, possibly 5-segment RSRM, possibly J2-X.  Or just as easily they can leave all three of those options for future growth, which is what I think they should do.

Only time will tell.  I just hope we don't have to endure more endless (and pointless) studies and trades.  I think everyone now acknowledges that a baseline inline SD-HLV using 4-segment SRBs and Shuttle-sized tankage is a workable choice, even if many do not agree with the policy.

My hope is that NASA takes the easy path for once, and gets a J-130 (or whatever they want to call it) ready to launch sooner and cheaper than Congress is asking for, instead of the other way around.

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/21/2010 11:04 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 

That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?

I am still not 51D Mascot but I am almost sure that the SD-HLV requirement will not be contradicted in the appropriation bill. Appropriation legislation will generally not contradict the language in an authorization bill. Sometimes money that is authorized will not be funded by the appropriators. In that case, NASA will ignore it. But the HLV is funded in the appropriation bill. So this is not the case. 

I can't stress this enough, up until about a month ago there were still very vocal and high ranking voices that would tell you the Ares-I/V was Shuttle Derived, how does the language prevent this same thing from occurring once again.

Ares V lite would probably still fit the bill. But I suspect that Bolden and the President want the cheapest HLV possible.  So Direct becomes a front runner because of this.

and that is precisely what I am worried about!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/21/2010 11:47 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 


That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?

Well, there was not an authorization bill for FY 2010. That, unfortunately, was essentially a "victim" of the decision by the Administration to conduct a review of US Human Space Flight activities and to propose only "placeholder" numbers in their budget request for FY 2010--at roughly the same as FY 2009 levels--until after the review was completed. That review--the Augustine Panel--took place during the same period of time that the Congress would have considered an FY 2010 authorization bill (the previous bill, enacted in 2008, was only for FY 2009.) The Administration indicated its intent was to provide an "amended Budget Request" following the conclusion of the Augustine Panel review.  So, on the Senate side, some of the authorizing committee staff continued to prepare draft authorizing language while the review was under-way, but obviously needed to await the outcome of the report to evaluate what options would be recommended. In the end, the Administration decided to not provide an amended FY 2010 request, but to develop its response to the Augustine report and release it as part of the FY 2011 Budget Request. It did that, of course, with a dramatic proposed realignment of US civil space programs for human spaceflight, and started the debate that's been raging. Meantime, Senator Hutchison decided to introduce a bill, based on the work done during and after the Augustine report, coupled with a review of the FY 2011 request, which suggested a possible area of compromise in the area of human spaceflight issues, between the existing programs and the proposed changes. She did that on March 3, with the introduction of S. 3068, and offered to use that to work, on a bipartisan basis, and with the White House, towards a compromise solution to the question of US human spaceflight.  Not long after, the Senate Commerce Committee, on which she is the Ranking Republican, and on which Senators Nelson and Vitter are the Chairman and Ranking Members of the Subcommittee on Science and Space, began discussions leading to the joint development of a full NASA bill, including human spaceflight provisions as well as the rest of NASA's programs, which eventually became the Committee bill that was marked up last week and is the subject of this forum discussion. But by this time, it's essentially too late to expect final passage of an authorization bill very much before the end of FY 2010, so the Senate bill only addresses FY2011, 2012, and 2013.

It remains now to be seen if either the House or Senate--or both--pass versions of a NASA authorization bill that they can then try to reconcile together to enact a final product into law.  So...a VERY long way of saying why there is no FY 2010 authorization bill.

But I sense an underlying question that really relates, I think, to the language--in both the 2005 NASA Authorization Act (for FY 2006, 2007 and 2008) and the 2008 NASA Authorization Act (for FY 2009), which provided authorization for development of replacement vehicles for the shuttle, and said that they should be based on shuttle-derived systems "to the maximum extent practicable." The appropriators have not provided specific language that would change that guidance; they have simply appropriated funds requested for the program developed by NASA under the authority of the two authorization bills I mentioned. It was the decision of NASA to develop the architecture for what became the Constellation Program, and which ended up being something different than strictly "SD-HLV", but that was still within the scope of the authorization, which did not MANDATE a strictly shuttle-derived vehicle.

Folks will argue for decades, I'm sure, whether that was the right choice, and it's not strictly relevant to this discussion, I suppose. But it is clear that the issue of "design heritage" for a follow-on space launch system is once again being addressed in some detail, at least in the Senate authorization language. But the Senate appropriations subcommittee today used the basic funding levels of the Senate Commerce Committee's compromise authorization bill as the guide for the funding levels in their appropriations for FY 2011. Those numbers, by themselves, don't provide "policy guidance" or "design recommendations," so I guess I'm saying that the underlying premise of the question is incorrect, in that there has never been a "mandated" SD-HLV (and again, it can be debated whether Congress should have been more prescriptive in its language on that point in the past, and whether the language in the current Senate Commerce compromise authorization bill is the right mix of options versus direction), so there was--and is--really nothing for the appropriators to contradict or overturn in that respect. Sorry for the long way to get there, but I hope I've answered your question, at least as I read it.   
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Proponent on 07/22/2010 01:37 AM
BTW, what makes Sen. Mikulski tick?  Are there any factors in particular that would explain her emphasis on crew safety and her lack of enthusiasm for commercial crew?  I can see why she would be interest in space: APL and the Space Telescope Science Institute are both in her state.  Neither of these, however, has much to do with HSF.

Ditto Rep. Giffords.  Obviously she has a astronaut for a husband.  Other than that are there any commercial or other interests within her district that would be especially relevant to her approach to NASA?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: sdsds on 07/22/2010 02:13 AM
I think the over-arching question is, what specific legal mechanism is there to prevent the program deviating so far afield as it did before.

Wishing there was "de-authorization" legislation, e.g.:  "NASA is not authorized to contract for development of a new first-stage rocket engine, nor a major modification of an existing engine."
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/22/2010 02:23 AM
I think the over-arching question is, what specific legal mechanism is there to prevent the program deviating so far afield as it did before.

Wishing there was "de-authorization" legislation, e.g.:  "NASA is not authorized to contract for development of a new first-stage rocket engine, nor a major modification of an existing engine."
Never going to happen - would allow admin  latitude to abandon J-2X and 5 seg contracts.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: madscientist197 on 07/22/2010 10:57 AM
Isn't it possible to add a clause saying that no appropriated money may be used for a specific purpose?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/22/2010 02:34 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 


That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?

Well, there was not an authorization bill for FY 2010. That, unfortunately, was essentially a "victim" of the decision by the Administration to conduct a review of US Human Space Flight activities and to propose only "placeholder" numbers in their budget request for FY 2010--at roughly the same as FY 2009 levels--until after the review was completed. That review--the Augustine Panel--took place during the same period of time that the Congress would have considered an FY 2010 authorization bill (the previous bill, enacted in 2008, was only for FY 2009.) The Administration indicated its intent was to provide an "amended Budget Request" following the conclusion of the Augustine Panel review.  So, on the Senate side, some of the authorizing committee staff continued to prepare draft authorizing language while the review was under-way, but obviously needed to await the outcome of the report to evaluate what options would be recommended. In the end, the Administration decided to not provide an amended FY 2010 request, but to develop its response to the Augustine report and release it as part of the FY 2011 Budget Request. It did that, of course, with a dramatic proposed realignment of US civil space programs for human spaceflight, and started the debate that's been raging. Meantime, Senator Hutchison decided to introduce a bill, based on the work done during and after the Augustine report, coupled with a review of the FY 2011 request, which suggested a possible area of compromise in the area of human spaceflight issues, between the existing programs and the proposed changes. She did that on March 3, with the introduction of S. 3068, and offered to use that to work, on a bipartisan basis, and with the White House, towards a compromise solution to the question of US human spaceflight.  Not long after, the Senate Commerce Committee, on which she is the Ranking Republican, and on which Senators Nelson and Vitter are the Chairman and Ranking Members of the Subcommittee on Science and Space, began discussions leading to the joint development of a full NASA bill, including human spaceflight provisions as well as the rest of NASA's programs, which eventually became the Committee bill that was marked up last week and is the subject of this forum discussion. But by this time, it's essentially too late to expect final passage of an authorization bill very much before the end of FY 2010, so the Senate bill only addresses FY2011, 2012, and 2013.

It remains now to be seen if either the House or Senate--or both--pass versions of a NASA authorization bill that they can then try to reconcile together to enact a final product into law.  So...a VERY long way of saying why there is no FY 2010 authorization bill.

But I sense an underlying question that really relates, I think, to the language--in both the 2005 NASA Authorization Act (for FY 2006, 2007 and 2008) and the 2008 NASA Authorization Act (for FY 2009), which provided authorization for development of replacement vehicles for the shuttle, and said that they should be based on shuttle-derived systems "to the maximum extent practicable." The appropriators have not provided specific language that would change that guidance; they have simply appropriated funds requested for the program developed by NASA under the authority of the two authorization bills I mentioned. It was the decision of NASA to develop the architecture for what became the Constellation Program, and which ended up being something different than strictly "SD-HLV", but that was still within the scope of the authorization, which did not MANDATE a strictly shuttle-derived vehicle.

Folks will argue for decades, I'm sure, whether that was the right choice, and it's not strictly relevant to this discussion, I suppose. But it is clear that the issue of "design heritage" for a follow-on space launch system is once again being addressed in some detail, at least in the Senate authorization language. But the Senate appropriations subcommittee today used the basic funding levels of the Senate Commerce Committee's compromise authorization bill as the guide for the funding levels in their appropriations for FY 2011. Those numbers, by themselves, don't provide "policy guidance" or "design recommendations," so I guess I'm saying that the underlying premise of the question is incorrect, in that there has never been a "mandated" SD-HLV (and again, it can be debated whether Congress should have been more prescriptive in its language on that point in the past, and whether the language in the current Senate Commerce compromise authorization bill is the right mix of options versus direction), so there was--and is--really nothing for the appropriators to contradict or overturn in that respect. Sorry for the long way to get there, but I hope I've answered your question, at least as I read it.   

I understand what your saying. However, the language discussing the use of shuttle derived hardware & the language discussing a 70-100 ton IMLEO launch vehicle with an evolution to a 130+ tons IMLEO booster strongly indicate that the Senate wants a Direct Launcher(SD-HLV).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/22/2010 02:43 PM
I probably should let 51D Mascot answer this himself (as he knows a lot more than I do on this). But I don't think that it is necessary that this language be in the appropriation bill. Appropriation bills usually don't go into that kind of detail (they are mostly numbers). Most of the details are found in the autorization bill. 


That is correct, and essentially part of why there are separate bills and separate committees. The authorizers are the "policy and oversight" committees, who establish program guidelines and general direction for agencies or subject matter within their jurisdiction and establish the legal authority for the appropriations, where the actual spending is meted out; the appropriators take the piece of the actual total federal budget "pie" that they are allocated and apply it to the programs as they see fit and are able to within their allocation and jurisdiction.

Does that help clarify?
Then what your saying is that the NASA 2010 Authorization Bill language creating a SD-HLV is not contradicted or overturned by any comments in the NASA Appropriations Subcommittee bill. Is that correct?

Well, there was not an authorization bill for FY 2010. That, unfortunately, was essentially a "victim" of the decision by the Administration to conduct a review of US Human Space Flight activities and to propose only "placeholder" numbers in their budget request for FY 2010--at roughly the same as FY 2009 levels--until after the review was completed. That review--the Augustine Panel--took place during the same period of time that the Congress would have considered an FY 2010 authorization bill (the previous bill, enacted in 2008, was only for FY 2009.) The Administration indicated its intent was to provide an "amended Budget Request" following the conclusion of the Augustine Panel review.  So, on the Senate side, some of the authorizing committee staff continued to prepare draft authorizing language while the review was under-way, but obviously needed to await the outcome of the report to evaluate what options would be recommended. In the end, the Administration decided to not provide an amended FY 2010 request, but to develop its response to the Augustine report and release it as part of the FY 2011 Budget Request. It did that, of course, with a dramatic proposed realignment of US civil space programs for human spaceflight, and started the debate that's been raging. Meantime, Senator Hutchison decided to introduce a bill, based on the work done during and after the Augustine report, coupled with a review of the FY 2011 request, which suggested a possible area of compromise in the area of human spaceflight issues, between the existing programs and the proposed changes. She did that on March 3, with the introduction of S. 3068, and offered to use that to work, on a bipartisan basis, and with the White House, towards a compromise solution to the question of US human spaceflight.  Not long after, the Senate Commerce Committee, on which she is the Ranking Republican, and on which Senators Nelson and Vitter are the Chairman and Ranking Members of the Subcommittee on Science and Space, began discussions leading to the joint development of a full NASA bill, including human spaceflight provisions as well as the rest of NASA's programs, which eventually became the Committee bill that was marked up last week and is the subject of this forum discussion. But by this time, it's essentially too late to expect final passage of an authorization bill very much before the end of FY 2010, so the Senate bill only addresses FY2011, 2012, and 2013.

It remains now to be seen if either the House or Senate--or both--pass versions of a NASA authorization bill that they can then try to reconcile together to enact a final product into law.  So...a VERY long way of saying why there is no FY 2010 authorization bill.

But I sense an underlying question that really relates, I think, to the language--in both the 2005 NASA Authorization Act (for FY 2006, 2007 and 2008) and the 2008 NASA Authorization Act (for FY 2009), which provided authorization for development of replacement vehicles for the shuttle, and said that they should be based on shuttle-derived systems "to the maximum extent practicable." The appropriators have not provided specific language that would change that guidance; they have simply appropriated funds requested for the program developed by NASA under the authority of the two authorization bills I mentioned. It was the decision of NASA to develop the architecture for what became the Constellation Program, and which ended up being something different than strictly "SD-HLV", but that was still within the scope of the authorization, which did not MANDATE a strictly shuttle-derived vehicle.

Folks will argue for decades, I'm sure, whether that was the right choice, and it's not strictly relevant to this discussion, I suppose. But it is clear that the issue of "design heritage" for a follow-on space launch system is once again being addressed in some detail, at least in the Senate authorization language. But the Senate appropriations subcommittee today used the basic funding levels of the Senate Commerce Committee's compromise authorization bill as the guide for the funding levels in their appropriations for FY 2011. Those numbers, by themselves, don't provide "policy guidance" or "design recommendations," so I guess I'm saying that the underlying premise of the question is incorrect, in that there has never been a "mandated" SD-HLV (and again, it can be debated whether Congress should have been more prescriptive in its language on that point in the past, and whether the language in the current Senate Commerce compromise authorization bill is the right mix of options versus direction), so there was--and is--really nothing for the appropriators to contradict or overturn in that respect. Sorry for the long way to get there, but I hope I've answered your question, at least as I read it.   

By the way, is Alan Mollohan(Chairman of the House NASA Appropriations Subcommittee) bound by the language in the House NASA 2010 Authorization Bill? In other words, if he wants to fund a bill like the Senate's Compromise can he use it as his guidance & not the House's NASA Authorization Bill? I ask this because Chairman Mollohan has expressed deep concerns about funding the Ares 1 rocket.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/22/2010 02:46 PM
Ditto Rep. Giffords.  Obviously she has a astronaut for a husband.  Other than that are there any commercial or other interests within her district that would be especially relevant to her approach to NASA?

Orbital in Chandler, AZ.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/22/2010 02:50 PM
I understand what your saying. However, the language discussing the use of shuttle derived hardware & the language discussing a 70-100 ton IMLEO launch vehicle with an evolution to a 130+ tons IMLEO booster strongly indicate that the Senate wants a Direct Launcher(SD-HLV).

Well, the real kicker for SDLV is the 2016 date, which effectively excludes any new-start engines (but not J-2X), like the RP-1 designs used.

And Direct/Inline is not a given, as sidemount could replicate those numbers; it'll be up to NASA to decide between the two...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/22/2010 03:15 PM
I understand what your saying. However, the language discussing the use of shuttle derived hardware & the language discussing a 70-100 ton IMLEO launch vehicle with an evolution to a 130+ tons IMLEO booster strongly indicate that the Senate wants a Direct Launcher(SD-HLV).

Well, the real kicker for SDLV is the 2016 date, which effectively excludes any new-start engines (but not J-2X), like the RP-1 designs used.

And Direct/Inline is not a given, as sidemount could replicate those numbers; it'll be up to NASA to decide between the two...

Just to throw something into that...developing a SD-HLV by 2016 does not fix you to a specific requirement WHEN YOU INDICATE GROWTH OPTIONS.

There is still room in there for an RL-10 variant, is what I'm saying. It may be a round-about way, but for them to be pushing that hard for J-2X, means they have something in mind (IE: Political). If the numbers for J-2X don't pan out, they can still persue the RL-10 cluster, but it might be in the second development phase. Just saying...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/22/2010 03:16 PM
I understand what your saying. However, the language discussing the use of shuttle derived hardware & the language discussing a 70-100 ton IMLEO launch vehicle with an evolution to a 130+ tons IMLEO booster strongly indicate that the Senate wants a Direct Launcher(SD-HLV).

Well, the real kicker for SDLV is the 2016 date, which effectively excludes any new-start engines (but not J-2X), like the RP-1 designs used.

And Direct/Inline is not a given, as sidemount could replicate those numbers; it'll be up to NASA to decide between the two...
I don't think sidemount is likely for two reasons. First, the Congress(In particular Senator Mikulski) is deeply concerned about safety. Sidemount is far less safe during a launch abort. Secondly, its growth potential is far less than inline. The Augustine Commission addressed both of these questions when it stated on page 67 of its final report,"the side mount variant is considered an inherently less safe arrangement if crew are to be carried & is more limited in its growth potential." Finally, it will be far more expensive to evolve a sidemount to an inline SD-HLV than to evolve a smaller inline(J-130,etc.) to a larger inline(J-241SH,etc.).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: libs0n on 07/22/2010 03:16 PM
The language of the legislation excludes from due consideration the Atlas 5 Phase 2, which was a competitive option to SDLV with its own merits as shown in the Augustine commission.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/22/2010 03:37 PM
I understand what your saying. However, the language discussing the use of shuttle derived hardware & the language discussing a 70-100 ton IMLEO launch vehicle with an evolution to a 130+ tons IMLEO booster strongly indicate that the Senate wants a Direct Launcher(SD-HLV).

Well, the real kicker for SDLV is the 2016 date, which effectively excludes any new-start engines (but not J-2X), like the RP-1 designs used.

And Direct/Inline is not a given, as sidemount could replicate those numbers; it'll be up to NASA to decide between the two...

Replicate 130+ tons with an upper stage ?? Where are you going to put it ?

MSFC is running the show and their reaction to this other center proposal is probably best expressed by one of their number ;)

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=11386.msg423645#msg423645
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Hop_David on 07/22/2010 04:27 PM
Ditto Rep. Giffords.  Obviously she has a astronaut for a husband.  Other than that are there any commercial or other interests within her district that would be especially relevant to her approach to NASA?

Orbital in Chandler, AZ.

But doesn't the house bill want to gut COTS? Wouldn't that harm Orbital?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Downix on 07/22/2010 04:41 PM
Ditto Rep. Giffords.  Obviously she has a astronaut for a husband.  Other than that are there any commercial or other interests within her district that would be especially relevant to her approach to NASA?

Orbital in Chandler, AZ.

But doesn't the house bill want to gut COTS? Wouldn't that harm Orbital?
I did not see it gutting COTS, only the Commercial Crew angle, which Orbital is not participating in regardless.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/22/2010 04:42 PM
Ditto Rep. Giffords.  Obviously she has a astronaut for a husband.  Other than that are there any commercial or other interests within her district that would be especially relevant to her approach to NASA?

Orbital in Chandler, AZ.

But doesn't the house bill want to gut COTS? Wouldn't that harm Orbital?
I did not see it gutting COTS, only the Commercial Crew angle, which Orbital is not participating in regardless.
Orbital has expressed interest in commercial crew, though they aren't nearly as well prepared as SpaceX and Boeing.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 04:48 PM
Ditto Rep. Giffords.  Obviously she has a astronaut for a husband.  Other than that are there any commercial or other interests within her district that would be especially relevant to her approach to NASA?

Orbital in Chandler, AZ.

Also ATK and Boeing
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 04:54 PM
Looks like Marcia Smith live-tweeted some of the House S&T's markup session today:

http://twitter.com/spcplcyonline

Is this being webcast somewhere?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 04:57 PM
Looks like Marcia Smith live-tweeted some of the House S&T's markup session today:

http://twitter.com/spcplcyonline

Is this being webcast somewhere?

Some interesting bits from Marcia Smith's twitter feed:
Quote
Kosmas amendment adds money for COTS, commercial crew up to Senate level. Takes money from exploration,kills loan guarantees...

Hall and Giffords oppose it; Rohrabacher supports it. Gordon opposes. Defeated by voice vote.

Rohrabacher amendment to add money for commercial cargo. Bill cuts all but $14 m from $312 request for FY11. Defeated (voice)

Grayson amendment to strike loan and loan guarantee language; no company asked for it and is wrong approach. Voice vote underway.

Grayson defeated 23-6.

Kosmas amendment to add funding for exploration technology development. Funds at level adopted by Senate cmtes. Defeated (voice)

Lujan amendment to remove $1 million limit on CRuSR suborbital program and leave amt up to Administrator. Approved (voice)

Broun amendment to make it a three year instead of five year authorization bill is approved (voice)

Sensenbrenner amendment to use the word "Constellation" in bill to show Congress still supports it. Defeated 10-19.

Committee recesses for floor votes. Will recovene 10 minutes after last floor vote.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/22/2010 05:09 PM
Looks like Marcia Smith live-tweeted some of the House S&T's markup session today:

http://twitter.com/spcplcyonline

Is this being webcast somewhere?

Yes, here:
http://science.house.gov/publications/hearings_markups_details.aspx?newsid=2884
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/22/2010 05:14 PM
Doesn't work for me, but that could be just a problem at my end.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/22/2010 05:15 PM
Direct link (WinMedia):
http://science.edgeboss.net/wmedia-live/science/59363/300_science-scitech_090819.asx
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/22/2010 05:17 PM
Rep. Wu objecting to the language on where the retired Shuttle orbiters would go.  (Section 223 -- "...with priority consideration given to eligible applicants meeting all conditions of that plan which would provide for the display and maintenance of orbiters at locations with the best potential value to the public, including where the location of the orbiters can advance educational opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines, and with an historical relationship with either the launch, flight operations, or processing of the Space Shuttle orbiters.").

Sounds like Rep. Wu is offering an amendment to change that.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/22/2010 05:25 PM
Standard procedure...now going to recorded vote; on the voice vote, the chair called it for the "no's," but one of the members requested the recorded vote.

(Unfortunately, my lunch break is over; have to split for now.)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/22/2010 05:33 PM
Some interesting bits from Marcia Smith's twitter feed:
Quote
Sensenbrenner amendment to use the word "Constellation" in bill to show Congress still supports it. Defeated 10-19.

10 in favour - yikes!

And, in general, looks like the house committee is in the mood to fight tooth-and-nail for the status quo. We're a long way from a compromise here, I think.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:36 PM
Grayson discussing proposed amendment, regarding lack of confirmation from NASA administrator that commercial launches will be from Florida:

dual track, one way is to continue having government operations, other is to try to develop capability through commercial entities, thinks both are possible, only one proven and demonstrated by can imagine capability of other, make-or-buy decision faced in DOD, bill would change make-or-buy rule and put in favor of commercial entitities, which Grayson thinks they don't deserve, complains that once commercial entity is capable (certifiable?) of serving ISS proven government systems would have to go to the wayside permanently, says doesn't make any sense, wants more level competition between government and commercial

saying commercial entities have no product, little experience, etc., wants to see fair competition between commercial alternatives and the program that's stood so well over past 50 years
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/22/2010 05:36 PM
Webcast now working for me.

Congressman wants to see a fair level playing field. Led astray by government contractors too many times.

Mr Hall is opposed to the amendment due to his support for commercial HSF.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:38 PM
garamenci wondering about term "US commercial company," concerned about potential for foreign-owned companies
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:41 PM
Rohrabacher peeved at Grayson, dice already loaded in favor of government approach, luke skywalker vs han solo debate (heh), laying foundation so commercial sector can play a role, at beginning of American century (?) there were some who wanted US government to build all the ships, would have different country today if we had decided government would be running all transportation systems, what's going on here is attempt to ease away from total government approach to private sector approach, mentions boeing, lockheed, delta system, atlas system as examples

Rohrabacher: opposes Grayson's amendment
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:43 PM
Giffords opposing Grayson amendment, points out that government system would not be shut down when commercial begins operation, don't want government unfairly competing with private sector once they satisfy NASA's requirements, makes clear that commercial systems can't cost more than government systems, would not be giving unearned and undeserved preference to commercial entities, would have to meet all requirements before they can be considered for federal government contracts, thinks it strikes a fair balance
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:43 PM
Grayson amendment voted down
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:44 PM
proposed amendment by ms. fudge and mr. wilson from Ohio

Fudge: mentions National Academies study (I think), withdraws amendment (?)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/22/2010 05:44 PM
Good work Neil. They all seem to be throwing amendments into the arena.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:46 PM
proposed amendment by Mr. Matheson of Utah

Matheson: language requires NASA to come up with spaceflight plan within 180 days of enactment, nothing keeping from NASA from ... (missed this, something about termination) ... during that time,

all voice voted in favor
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 05:47 PM
ouch, Rohrabacher up next, Chairman Gordon said something like "since Mr. Rohrabacher is up next, this might take a while," so taking (pre-scheduled?) break beforehand ;)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/22/2010 05:47 PM
Mr Matheson didn't want the continued funding during that time to be held in reserve to pay for termination costs.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/22/2010 05:50 PM
proposed amendment by Mr. Matheson of Utah

Matheson: language requires NASA to come up with spaceflight plan within 180 days of enactment, nothing keeping from NASA from ... (missed this, something about termination) ... during that time,

all voice voted in favor

... continuing programs already authorized e.g. PoR. Also stated again that NASA should not set aside expenses for termination which hasn't been authorized by Congress. No sign of compromise here, reconciliation should be fun ;).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/22/2010 05:52 PM
ouch, Rohrabacher up next, Chairman Gordon said something like "since Mr. Rohrabacher is up next, this might take a while," so taking (pre-scheduled?) break beforehand ;)

I like Rohrabacher. It's nice to see a Republican that is consistently pro-business. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drkskywxlt on 07/22/2010 05:52 PM
The House seems deadset on keeping Constellation alive in all but name.  Orion, Ares I and some HLV (*cough*Ares V*cough*).  They couldn't care less about closing the spaceflight gap or having an actual spaceflight program.  I hope the Senate has a lot of power in the upcoming negotations, because there is NOTHING to like about the House's bill.  I don't see how Obama could support a compromise much below what the Senate Appropriations committee agreed to yesterday. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/22/2010 06:00 PM
proposed amendment by Mr. Matheson of Utah

Matheson: language requires NASA to come up with spaceflight plan within 180 days of enactment, nothing keeping from NASA from ... (missed this, something about termination) ... during that time,

all voice voted in favor

... continuing programs already authorized e.g. PoR. Also stated again that NASA should not set aside expenses for termination which hasn't been authorized by Congress. No sign of compromise here, reconciliation should be fun ;).

I think you mean Conference Committee. Reconciliation is for budget items. Conference committee meetings are mostly held in private (except for the first meeting).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 06:33 PM
house committee resuming
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/22/2010 06:35 PM
Mr Rohrabacher is not a fan of the Chinese government!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 06:40 PM
Rohrabacher: need report on collaboration with China (?), requirements for new nations joining ISS team, need report on military uses of chinese space program, need report on potential threat to ISS from China asat weapons tests

Gordon: mentions investigation might be better left to CIA, etc., rather than NASA

Hall: supports Rohrabacher's amendment, simply asks for report

Gordon: would take resources from NASA that could be used in a number of other areas, seems like asking DOD about hogs in texas

Rohrabacher: there've been indications of having similar space relationship with china as with russia, but has not made same internal progress (regarding oppression, etc.) as russia

vote: No's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 06:43 PM
amendment offered by Ms. Johnson from Texas

Johnson: clarifies section 405 of bill, ensures NASA has clear plan to put NASA-owned aeronautical structures... (?), reverse deterioration of aeronautics ground test facilities...

Vote: Aye's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 06:46 PM
amendment offered by Mr. Wilson from Ohio:

Wilson: evidence-based programs to improve STEM in country, represents rural part of Ohio, many constituents inspired by John Glenn who came from nearby, too many rural students lack adequate STEM education they would need to become NASA astronauts or engineers in future

Gordon: as son of two farmers and representative of largely rural district, agrees

Vote: aye's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/22/2010 06:47 PM
Ammendments for R&D for future missions, ammendment for space tech
Ayes have it!
(I'm happy about that)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 06:48 PM
amendment offered by Fudge & Wilson from Ohio

Fudge: research and development needed for future missions, if we don't start now R&D needed for Mars mission may never happen

Hall: inclined to support, but wants elaboration on how program will help overall exploration

Vote: aye's have it (anybody know exactly what this amendment covered?)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 06:53 PM
amendment offered by Lujan from New Mexico:

Lujan: some STEM activities in Education should specifically be for minorities and under-represented communities,

Garamendi question about if it'd only be for highest-levels, wants to be sure that it doesn't end up devoting only to highest levels, Lujan said that's not the case

Hall: wondering why a particular portion was stricken from the bill regarding Higher Education act of 1965,

(had difficulty following this one)

Vote: Aye's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 06:57 PM
amendment offered by Ms. Johnson from Texas

Johnson: section 601 focuses on improving STEM education, discusses shortage of minority teachers, amendment would task NASA administrator to consult with Secretary of Education and others on this topic

Vote: aye's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 07:00 PM
Ms. Fudge offering amendment by Ms. Edwards, who's temporarily absent at press conference

Fudge: pilot program for hands-on technology-related education and training, emphasis on underserved and underrepresented minority populations,

vote: aye's have it

Ms. Fudge and Mr. Wilson from Ohio offering another amendment

Fudge: adds provision to institutional management system, assessment of what structural modifications would be needed

Vote: aye's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/22/2010 07:02 PM
NEO ammendment: federal agencies designated with how to deal with a NEO that might be heading towards the Earth, what to do, how to deflect, reaffirms existing policy and an October 15th deadline.
Ayes have it.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 07:03 PM
amendment offered by Mr. Rohrabacher

Rohrabacher: near-Earth objects a threat to our nation and humanity, administration needs to designate what would be done and who would be responsible for deflecting near-earth objects if one were detected by (Oct 15?) deadline

Bartlett: mentions NEO ending dinosaurs, supports amendment

Vote: Aye's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/22/2010 07:04 PM
Ammendment reaffirms role of Arecibo telescope for identifying NEOs, reaffirms existing policy. Ayes have it.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/22/2010 07:11 PM
Rohrabacher ammendment about China (he hates that gov't!)
"Hug a Nazi, make a liberal" argument discussed.

Prohibits expanding cooperation (?) between NASA and China. Talks about China deploying a probe near ISS which threatened the station (anyone have info on this?).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/22/2010 07:14 PM
Mr. Wu talking about how Apollo-Soyuz happened during the middle of the Cold War, etc... little tech transfer...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 07:25 PM
amendment offered by Mr. Rohrabacher

Rohrabacher: role of Arecibo telescope in identification of threats of near-earth objects, without telescope would be unable to chart course (?), reaffirming existing policy

Vote: aye's have it

amendment offered by Mr. Rohrabacher

Rohrabacher: two serious threats of radical Islam and emergence of powerful China, lack of political reform in China and evolution into more democratic country, Chinese government threat to its people and US, amendment prohibits any exchange or contact between NASA/contractors and China, mentions danger posed to space station from debris caused by prior china asat weapons, would prevent NASA from expanding relationship with "vicious dictatorship," transfer of knowledge has been one-way from us to them, knows it's a controversial declaration, would want to see some reform on their end before resetting restriction

Gordon: amendment says to not even discuss with them, mentions Jim Baker quote about how we shouldn't be afraid to talk with them, although appreciates general concerns

Bartlett: asks if amendment is passed if would require referral to international relations; counsel responds doesn't think so, Gordon says it's a "definitive maybe" ;)

Rohrabacher: State department would still be able to contact and discuss with China, just saying NASA shouldn't at this time

Wu (born in Taiwan): work began with Russians when they were Soviet Union in 70s, when had thousands of nuclear weapons pointed at each other and very limited technology transfer, had Apollo-Soyuz docking, led to several decades of worthwhile (although sometimes testy) space relations, Soviet Union not exemplar for human rights, Secretary Gates during Bush Administration testified that he favored sharing some space activities with Chinese to enhance our security interests, better understanding of intentions and capabilities inherently in our interest, confidence-building to allow us to put pressure on them to not conduct anti-satellite tests, Gates said well worth risks

Rohrabacher: was opposed to space collaboration with Soviet Union, corresponded with massive build-up of Soviet weaponry, believes had negative effect, Wu question if rohrabacher thinks earlier collaboration helped later collaboration on ISS

Vote: No's have it, rohrabacher asks for roll call, clerk recording vote

Gordon: no
costello:
johnson: no
woolsey:
wu: no
baird:
miller: no
lepinsky:
giffords: no
edwards: no
fudge: no
lujan: no
tonko: no
rothman: no
matheson: no
davis:
chandler:
carnahan:
hill: no
mitchell: no
wilson: no
dahlkepper: no
grayson: no
kosmas: no
peters: no
garamendi:
hall: aye
sensenbrenner:
lamar smith:
rohrabacher: aye
bartlett: aye
aylers:
lucas:
biggert:
aiken:
nogibower:
ingless:
mccall: no
bollart:
bilbray: aye
adrian smith: aye
brown:
olson: aye

6 members aye, 20 no, no's have it (Gordon almost misspoke and said aye's had it initially)

(pardon misspelling)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 07:35 PM
amendment offered by Donna Edwards from Maryland

Edwards: need to retain internal capacity at NASA to oversee/manage/direct/influence many talented contractors, nothing in bill can happen without skilled workforce, calls to extend moratorium against reduction in force, NASA workforce very fluid and adaptable,

Hall: reluctantly support amendment, reluctant to protect only civil service employees when contractors being eliminated

Gordon: would give 5-year moratorium, if it makes sense for someone in NASA to do another job they'll be reassigned but NASA needs flexibility to hire new people with new skills

Edwards asks for recorded vote

Gordon: no
costello:
johnson:
woolsey: aye
wu: aye
baird: no
miller: no
lepinsky: no
giffords: no
edwards: aye
fudge: aye
lujan: aye
tonko: aye
rothman:
mathison: no
davis:
chandler:
carnahan:
hill: no
mitchell: aye
wilson: aye
dolkepper: no
grayson: aye
kosmas: aye
peters: no
garamendi:
hall: no
sensenbrenner:
lamar smith:
rohrabacher: no
bartlett: no
ailers:
lucas:
biggert: no
aiken:
nogabower:
ingless: no
mccall: no
bollart:
bilbray: no
adrian smith: no
brown:
olson: no

12 aye, 18 no, no's prevail

They're now breaking for a vote, 3 amendments left to go over
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: TexasRED on 07/22/2010 07:44 PM
feed died for me, anyone else?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/22/2010 07:46 PM
Yep, feed died for me too :(
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/22/2010 07:58 PM
BTW, the House version of the authorization bill is HR 5781.  Thomas has the version that was referred to the subcommittee for markup.  (With all the amendments, it will look different when it goes to the floor for debate and possible further amendments.)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: zerm on 07/22/2010 08:00 PM
My feed's back
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 08:15 PM
mccall from texas: decadal survey puts forth recommendations for research developed by top scientists in fields, funding was moved from science to cover earlier (Constellation?) budget shortfalls, wants to strengthen language regarding decadal surveys

vote: aye's have it

proposed amendment from miller and sensenbrenner

miller (from NC): miller and sensenbrenner disagreed on earlier amendment, disappointed in nasa's office of general counsel, feels two instances in which did not follow letter and spirit of law, amendment requires ethics training for licensed attorneys in office, moves office of ethics officer away from counsel

vote: aye's have it

proposed amendment, modified amendment from mr. peters of michigan

peters: administrator conduct study on radiation studies on non-human primates, research had been done for 40 ways, other ways to conduct these sorts of studies, USAF and ESA have moved away from these studies, need to provide justification and rationale for additional research

Bartlett: part of research team that put first primates in space, school physiologist (?), had army monkey and navy monkey (rhesus monkey and spider monkey), suborbital flight, supports amendment, says don't need whole-body exposures anymore

Wu: agree study is in order, yields back time

Vote: aye's have it
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 08:17 PM
Gordon: not a perfect bill, because don't have perfect amount of money, but thanks all for assistance, hearing adjourned
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/22/2010 08:20 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/22/2010 08:23 PM
Gordon: not a perfect bill, because don't have perfect amount of money, but thanks all for assistance, hearing adjourned

Thanks for your efforts Neil. Much appreciated.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/22/2010 08:25 PM
Gordon: not a perfect bill, because don't have perfect amount of money, but thanks all for assistance, hearing adjourned

Thanks for your efforts Neil. Much appreciated.
Seconded!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: neilh on 07/22/2010 08:30 PM
Gordon: not a perfect bill, because don't have perfect amount of money, but thanks all for assistance, hearing adjourned

Thanks for your efforts Neil. Much appreciated.

You're quite welcome.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/22/2010 08:32 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/22/2010 08:48 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Haven't had a chance to go through it yet...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/22/2010 09:05 PM
Missed this amendment; in Rep. Kosmas's press release "Kosmas Successful in Fight for Additional Shuttle Mission":
http://www.kosmas.house.gov/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=331&Itemid=65

Not sure if it includes changes to the ops budget...guess we'll have to wait to see the updated bill.

Edit, the last line in the press release makes it sound like we'll need to continue to have patience:  "The NASA reauthorization process is expected to continue into the fall."

Edit 2: Florida Today reports that the ops budget was increased to be in line with the Senate bill:
http://space.flatoday.net/2010/07/house-panel-backs-additional-shuttle.html
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: moose103 on 07/22/2010 09:36 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002


Compare that to: http://vimeo.com/channels/hsf

The politicians sound like they're ordering expensive pizzas rather than deciding the future of humanity!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/23/2010 01:52 AM
http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-compromise-policy-20100722,0,3975954.story

Bolden told Nelson that the HLV couldnt be completed before 2020 (before the HLV funding bump).   Might explain the bump in the Senate version and the House's desire to kill CC for more HLV money.

edit: It seems Bolden may have been referring to an even lower amount that was floated pre-compromise.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/23/2010 02:08 AM
proposed amendment by Mr. Matheson of Utah

Matheson: language requires NASA to come up with spaceflight plan within 180 days of enactment, nothing keeping from NASA from ... (missed this, something about termination) ... during that time,

all voice voted in favor

... continuing programs already authorized e.g. PoR. Also stated again that NASA should not set aside expenses for termination which hasn't been authorized by Congress. No sign of compromise here, reconciliation should be fun ;).

I think you mean Conference Committee. Reconciliation is for budget items. Conference committee meetings are mostly held in private (except for the first meeting).

http://robbishop.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=199378

“It is extremely encouraging that both the House and Senate, in a bipartisan manner, have recognized the importance of maintaining solid rocket motor technologies, such as the Ares 1 rocket.  The draft House version of this bill is a strong repudiation of the President’s flawed proposal – stronger even than the good developments we saw last week out of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.

“Building on the momentum generated by the recent Senate proposal, the House version takes a further step toward preserving the Ares 1 rocket and the future of manned space flight, but we still have a ways to go and legislative hurdles to cross.  I will continue to work with my House colleagues to ensure that the final version reconciled in the conference committee includes all components necessary to maintain superior national defense capabilities and the future of manned space flight,” said Congressman Bishop.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/23/2010 02:28 AM
And they said I was paranoid for saying Ares I still wasn't quite dead...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: gladiator1332 on 07/23/2010 03:17 AM
proposed amendment by Mr. Matheson of Utah

Matheson: language requires NASA to come up with spaceflight plan within 180 days of enactment, nothing keeping from NASA from ... (missed this, something about termination) ... during that time,

all voice voted in favor

... continuing programs already authorized e.g. PoR. Also stated again that NASA should not set aside expenses for termination which hasn't been authorized by Congress. No sign of compromise here, reconciliation should be fun ;).

I think you mean Conference Committee. Reconciliation is for budget items. Conference committee meetings are mostly held in private (except for the first meeting).

http://robbishop.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=199378

“It is extremely encouraging that both the House and Senate, in a bipartisan manner, have recognized the importance of maintaining solid rocket motor technologies, such as the Ares 1 rocket.  The draft House version of this bill is a strong repudiation of the President’s flawed proposal – stronger even than the good developments we saw last week out of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.

“Building on the momentum generated by the recent Senate proposal, the House version takes a further step toward preserving the Ares 1 rocket and the future of manned space flight, but we still have a ways to go and legislative hurdles to cross.  I will continue to work with my House colleagues to ensure that the final version reconciled in the conference committee includes all components necessary to maintain superior national defense capabilities and the future of manned space flight,” said Congressman Bishop.


(http://rob.nu/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/facepalm3.jpg)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kkattula on 07/23/2010 03:19 AM
How much of this sub-committee stuf is posturing, so some congressman can go back to his district/state and say: "Look, I offered/passed an ammendment protecting your jobs." ?

It later gets quietly dropped in conference, but he can say he put up the good fight, and the conference bill won't get huge publicity.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/23/2010 03:25 AM
If all he cares about is SRBs, someones should point out to him that Shuttle-Derived SLS has two of them, and is thus twice as good for Utah... :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: gladiator1332 on 07/23/2010 03:35 AM
If all he cares about is SRBs, someones should point out to him that Shuttle-Derived SLS has two of them, and is thus twice as good for Utah... :)

Good point. But I think he wants the development $$$ necessary to make Ares I possible. Still don't have a solution for TO...I see that taking some more cash to solve.

When the various Cx Supporters thought they were going to lose it all, they started to come to their senses it seemed, and began to support a true SD-HLV. Now that it is clear that FY2011 has zero support in congress, they now feel it is safe to once again support the wasteful programs that got us where we are today.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DaveJSC on 07/23/2010 03:49 AM
{Edited, and I'm sorry - I do know things are getting very bad over there, but that post was a lawyer's dream, and rather than deleting it, I'll class this edit as your way of saying you're protesting what's going on - Chris.}
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: DaveJSC on 07/23/2010 04:00 AM
Understood Chris, just so angry we have a leadership that isn't fighting for us, again.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/23/2010 04:23 AM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Haven't had a chance to go through it yet...


No...still very close to the numbers provided in the Commerce compromise bill--and nothing that threatens the coalition of support developed through the drafting of the Commerce bill...a fact that will have considerable impact in coming weeks. The Senate has a consolidated policy position, supported by appropriations levels endorsed by the full Appropriations Committee, so two separate bills will be reported to the floor, one from each primary committee of jurisdiction, which are as much in synch as never before seen in recent history...and with the expressed support of the White House behind the underlying principles of the compromise plan. You really can't go into a bargaining position with the House from a much stronger position than that.

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/23/2010 04:25 AM
Understood Chris, just so angry we have a leadership that isn't fighting for us, again.
Depends on who you mean by "leadership", what you mean by "fighting", and who you mean by "us".  :)

If you mean rational HSF  - yes. But you'd be surprised how hostile and embattled / bitter this is.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/23/2010 04:30 AM
Understood Chris, just so angry we have a leadership that isn't fighting for us, again.

I missed whatever it was you posted earlier, but regardless, please note that we are behind you and fighting for you in every way that we can.  Even if we're just anonymous Internet bloggers, we believe in NASA and HSF.  And even many in Congress are fighting for you, and not just those with NASA facilities in their districts.

America still wants to be proud of their space program, even if many of them won't admit it.

Hang in there!

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr. mark on 07/23/2010 05:05 AM
If I were the president I would veto any legislation that does not promote commercial spaceflight to his satisfaction. Why? simple, he holds the program in his hands and holds all the cards. A veto would give both Spacex and Orbital time to prove themselves at cargo by pushing a new bill into 2011 just about the time when spacex and orbital would start cargo operations, in theory. A relook at the legislation might force congress into a compromise to allow more human spaceflight commercial funding. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jorge on 07/23/2010 05:30 AM
If I were the president I would veto any legislation that does not promote commercial spaceflight to his satisfaction. Why? simple, he holds the program in his hands and holds all the cards. 

He does hold the cards with respect to authorization legislation, which is typically passed as a standalone bill. He can veto a NASA authorization bill with no repercussions to the rest of his agenda.

However, he holds few cards with respect to Appropriation legislation, and that is what really matters. It is possible for an agency to operate without an Authorization bill. NASA is doing so at this very moment, since the most recent Authorization bill only covered FY2009. But it is not possible for an agency to operate without Appropriation legislation.

At a minimum, such legislation covers the entire relevant appropriations subcommittee, which in NASA's case includes Commerce, Justice, and several others. So the president cannot veto NASA appropriations without shutting down at least those agencies as well.

And over the last several years, it has been typical for Congress to consolidate several (or all) appropriations bills into an Omnibus bill. The president could not veto that bill without shutting down most of the government.

Mind you, it is not unprecedented for that to happen, but the one time in recent memory that it did (1995), the issue at stake was Medicare, which was much bigger than NASA.

Mark my words, the president will *not* veto an Omnibus appropriations bill (or even a Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies appropriations bill) just because of a dispute over NASA. Won't happen. Would bet my house on that. (In a sense, I already am).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/23/2010 06:39 AM
If I were the president I would veto any legislation that does not promote commercial spaceflight to his satisfaction. Why? simple, he holds the program in his hands and holds all the cards. A veto would give both Spacex and Orbital time to prove themselves at cargo by pushing a new bill into 2011 just about the time when spacex and orbital would start cargo operations, in theory. A relook at the legislation might force congress into a compromise to allow more human spaceflight commercial funding. 

Obviously, it depends on what form the final authorization legislation takes. At the present, don't forget that he has communicated his support for the Senate Commerce compromise bill. There are a number of legislative and procedural options available, working in concert with the White House, that could lead to the passage of a bill he can continue to support. The process is not as "cut and dried" as many may think.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/23/2010 11:15 AM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Haven't had a chance to go through it yet...


No...still very close to the numbers provided in the Commerce compromise bill--and nothing that threatens the coalition of support developed through the drafting of the Commerce bill...a fact that will have considerable impact in coming weeks. The Senate has a consolidated policy position, supported by appropriations levels endorsed by the full Appropriations Committee, so two separate bills will be reported to the floor, one from each primary committee of jurisdiction, which are as much in synch as never before seen in recent history...and with the expressed support of the White House behind the underlying principles of the compromise plan. You really can't go into a bargaining position with the House from a much stronger position than that.
Agree -- the commercial number(s) in the House press release for their authorization bill weren't the same as what was in the bill.  I guess now we mostly wait until the bills are considered again on the floor.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/23/2010 11:40 AM
Understood Chris, just so angry we have a leadership that isn't fighting for us, again.
Depends on who you mean by "leadership", what you mean by "fighting", and who you mean by "us".  :)

If you mean rational HSF  - yes. But you'd be surprised how hostile and embattled / bitter this is.

One thing coming out of all this that was reflected in my 'up close and personal tour' at KSC: politics.

We have all seen what can go on at NASA, and how something (that we thought was straightforward) like shuttle-derived can be twisted into something like Ares I/V.

Now we are seeing the other side of things, for many of us, in this day and age (of the internet). We should take note of these proceedings, and how they affect the space program (and anything else wrt/policy). It's never just as easy as doing what we believe to be the 'right thing' or the 'best way forward'. Quite eye opening.

We are seeing politics in action, for better or for worse, and unfortunately we have to accept the outcome and work within it. SO what we can hope for is the best position to work within, and then hope NASA can also do the best it can with what has been handed to them.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drkskywxlt on 07/23/2010 12:57 PM
I'm glad that Bolden and Garver reminded Congress that doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is one definition of insanity.  They want a HLV in LESS time with LESS money than what they were willing to do for Ares I/V.  They are dooming NASA to failure once again.  They need to at least fund CCDev so when the HLV is still only a paper launch vehicle in 2016, we have a chance to have a non-Soyuz ride to LEO.  Don't expect Shelby and Bishop and the other pork-huggers to provide an apology when that time comes. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/23/2010 01:39 PM
I'm glad that Bolden and Garver reminded Congress that doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is one definition of insanity.  They want a HLV in LESS time with LESS money than what they were willing to do for Ares I/V.  They are dooming NASA to failure once again.  They need to at least fund CCDev so when the HLV is still only a paper launch vehicle in 2016, we have a chance to have a non-Soyuz ride to LEO.  Don't expect Shelby and Bishop and the other pork-huggers to provide an apology when that time comes. 

Well, if you think about it, it should take HALF the money and HALF the time to develop SLS, because Ares-I/V obviously called for the development and operations of TWO vehicles, with TWO completely separate production requirements, TWO completely separate operations requirements, etc, etc.

So no, it is not unreasonable to expect NASA to be able to develop SLS for less money and in less time than CxP.

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/23/2010 01:49 PM
I think the complaint is that it's less than the money budgeted previously for Ares I and Orion over the next three years.  Ares V wasnt going to really begin for some time.

SDLVers will argue that it's simply cheaper to do SDLV but it worries some people. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/23/2010 02:11 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Haven't had a chance to go through it yet...


No...still very close to the numbers provided in the Commerce compromise bill--and nothing that threatens the coalition of support developed through the drafting of the Commerce bill...a fact that will have considerable impact in coming weeks. The Senate has a consolidated policy position, supported by appropriations levels endorsed by the full Appropriations Committee, so two separate bills will be reported to the floor, one from each primary committee of jurisdiction, which are as much in synch as never before seen in recent history...and with the expressed support of the White House behind the underlying principles of the compromise plan. You really can't go into a bargaining position with the House from a much stronger position than that.
Agree -- the commercial number(s) in the House press release for their authorization bill weren't the same as what was in the bill.  I guess now we mostly wait until the bills are considered again on the floor.

Another thing, I was wondering about is whether the House appropriators could increase the amounts for commercial crew that are in the House authorization bill.

Even if this happened, this would not solve the entire problem as there are significant roadblocks in the House bill that prevents commercial crew from being an option. For example, the requirement that commercial crew have demonstrated capability before NASA can enter into a services contract with them. Although this may seem like a reasonable requirement, it isn't because the main incentive for the commercial companies to invest some of their funds in the development of commercial crew is the potential reward of obtaining a commercial crew services contract from NASA.   

The requirement that ASAP approve human rating requirements seems like another roadblock since ASAP did not seem very favourable to commercial crew at Congressionnal Hearings.   
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/23/2010 02:22 PM
I think the complaint is that it's less than the money budgeted previously for Ares I and Orion over the next three years.  Ares V wasnt going to really begin for some time.

SDLVers will argue that it's simply cheaper to do SDLV but it worries some people. 

Well yes, if you put it that way.  But Drkskywxlt specifically said "Ares-I/V", so I took that at face value.  Also, the Ares-I was a completely novel configuration for a manned vehicle, and maybe even unmanned.  So it's not too surprising that there were unforeseen complications and delays, which caused costs to skyrocket.

Whereas true SDLV has been studied to death, since even before Shuttle was flying.  Of course turning a any paper rocket into a real rocket is going to turn up issues.  But one would hope that after 30+ years of SDLV studies, AND 30 years of operational experience with Shuttle, not to mention five years of angst wrestling with the intractable Ares-I, that most of the kinks have been worked out of SDLV by now.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: JohnFornaro on 07/23/2010 02:27 PM
Quote
At a minimum, such legislation covers the entire relevant appropriations subcommittee, which in NASA's case includes Commerce, Justice, and several others. So the president cannot veto NASA appropriations without shutting down at least those agencies as well.

This is a good check and balance.  Any agency can't be turned on an off like a faucet.  I believe that whatever NASA sausage is presented to the President, he will sign.

...Quite eye opening.

We are seeing politics in action, for better or for worse, and unfortunately we have to accept the outcome and work within it...

There ya go.  Keep calling 'em like you see 'em, Robert.  This is also the most I've ever been imvolved in politics as well, and very eye opening.

Quote
They want a HLV in LESS time with LESS money than what they were willing to do for Ares I/V.  They are dooming NASA to failure once again.

Nelson, Shelby, KBH, and a lot of these pols are refusing to acknowledge this.  For me to agree that Bolden is correct in this logic is not to say that he is correct in all of his logic.

I would hope that the new bill puts a four year moratorium on an HLV, and that the money be used to continue five or six more shuttle flights, more lunar prospecting and ISRU missions, a remote determination of martian exobiology, and some more money to commercial space.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drkskywxlt on 07/23/2010 02:53 PM
I think the complaint is that it's less than the money budgeted previously for Ares I and Orion over the next three years.  Ares V wasnt going to really begin for some time.

SDLVers will argue that it's simply cheaper to do SDLV but it worries some people. 

Well yes, if you put it that way.  But Drkskywxlt specifically said "Ares-I/V", so I took that at face value.  Also, the Ares-I was a completely novel configuration for a manned vehicle, and maybe even unmanned.  So it's not too surprising that there were unforeseen complications and delays, which caused costs to skyrocket.

Whereas true SDLV has been studied to death, since even before Shuttle was flying.  Of course turning a any paper rocket into a real rocket is going to turn up issues.  But one would hope that after 30+ years of SDLV studies, AND 30 years of operational experience with Shuttle, not to mention five years of angst wrestling with the intractable Ares-I, that most of the kinks have been worked out of SDLV by now.

My mistake, I did mean Ares I and Orion. 

Quote
So no, it is not unreasonable to expect NASA to be able to develop SLS for less money and in less time than CxP.
Unfortunately, reason has little to do with it.  No offense to the DIRECT team, but even if their budget/schedule predictions are correct and even if (huge if) NASA decides to implement the simplest DIRECT architecture to meet Congress' requirements, I have no faith that the budget and schedule will be met. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rcoppola on 07/23/2010 03:03 PM
Concerning Bolden, Garver et al, and HlV timeline and budget....stop the civil service mind-set...

Step outside of the box. Think anew. As the previous post mentions very nicely, this SDHLV concept is nothing new. Do what LM did. Create a skunk works. Small, integrated, cross functional team, break down the barriers between the design, engineering, production and management teams. Keep them away from the monster mother ship and let them go at it 24/7 365. We'll get our SDHLV by 2015.


Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/23/2010 03:58 PM
Please keep in mind ... that what you see here ... are what each respective 'community of interest' ... thinks NASA should be.

It is very revealing. Tells you what it can/cannot do. And why.

Keep that in mind when you get vexed.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/23/2010 05:02 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Haven't had a chance to go through it yet...


No...still very close to the numbers provided in the Commerce compromise bill--and nothing that threatens the coalition of support developed through the drafting of the Commerce bill...a fact that will have considerable impact in coming weeks. The Senate has a consolidated policy position, supported by appropriations levels endorsed by the full Appropriations Committee, so two separate bills will be reported to the floor, one from each primary committee of jurisdiction, which are as much in synch as never before seen in recent history...and with the expressed support of the White House behind the underlying principles of the compromise plan. You really can't go into a bargaining position with the House from a much stronger position than that.

I believe that there was an amendment to add $27M to Flagship 1 (new propulsion device for the next generation of spacecraft) that passed (at 76 minutes of the webcast; NASA starts at 71:50). http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

For what it's worth, the Orlando Sentinel said the exact same thing as you:
Quote
As it stands, the path for the NASA compromise to become law runs through must-pass spending bills that likely will come up for votes later this year. There remains an outside chance that it could be scuttled by dissenters in the House, but the combined support of the White House and Senate means compromise backers have the heavy advantage when dealing with House leaders.

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-compromise-policy-20100722,0,3975954.story?page=2
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/23/2010 05:06 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Haven't had a chance to go through it yet...


No...still very close to the numbers provided in the Commerce compromise bill--and nothing that threatens the coalition of support developed through the drafting of the Commerce bill...a fact that will have considerable impact in coming weeks. The Senate has a consolidated policy position, supported by appropriations levels endorsed by the full Appropriations Committee, so two separate bills will be reported to the floor, one from each primary committee of jurisdiction, which are as much in synch as never before seen in recent history...and with the expressed support of the White House behind the underlying principles of the compromise plan. You really can't go into a bargaining position with the House from a much stronger position than that.

I believe that there was an amendment to add 37M to technology that passed.

For what it's worth, the Orlando Sentinel said the exact same thing as you:
Quote
As it stands, the path for the NASA compromise to become law runs through must-pass spending bills that likely will come up for votes later this year. There remains an outside chance that it could be scuttled by dissenters in the House, but the combined support of the White House and Senate means compromise backers have the heavy advantage when dealing with House leaders.

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-compromise-policy-20100722,0,3975954.story?page=2

"Days before the compromise was announced, NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden and Deputy Administrator Lori Garver told its two champions -- U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas — that NASA could not finish the proposed new rocket before 2020, according to three sources present at the meetings."

Did I hear that correctly? You are telling me that NASA (MSFC) is going to take a decade to build a vehicle based on existing technology!?! Infrastructure, Tooling, People, Process, etc etc, etc,...?

Did I get that right, one that has been studied and traded nearly to death since the 80's.

I have another congressional action to propose, these 2 jokers need to be fired if not for this outrage but their actions to date, This is outrageous waste.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/23/2010 05:21 PM
According to the article, their estimate of 2020 was for a different level of funding. Augustine also estimated early 2020s for a SD-HLV.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/23/2010 05:24 PM
Audio of the Senate Appropriations Committee markup of a few appropriations bills (including CJS, which includes NASA):
http://appropriations.senate.gov/webcasts.cfm?method=webcasts.view&id=0a23cc27-5cc3-4936-9d06-bbbe34c3b002

Any changes from yesterday?
Haven't had a chance to go through it yet...


No...still very close to the numbers provided in the Commerce compromise bill--and nothing that threatens the coalition of support developed through the drafting of the Commerce bill...a fact that will have considerable impact in coming weeks. The Senate has a consolidated policy position, supported by appropriations levels endorsed by the full Appropriations Committee, so two separate bills will be reported to the floor, one from each primary committee of jurisdiction, which are as much in synch as never before seen in recent history...and with the expressed support of the White House behind the underlying principles of the compromise plan. You really can't go into a bargaining position with the House from a much stronger position than that.

I believe that there was an amendment to add 37M to technology that passed.

For what it's worth, the Orlando Sentinel said the exact same thing as you:
Quote
As it stands, the path for the NASA compromise to become law runs through must-pass spending bills that likely will come up for votes later this year. There remains an outside chance that it could be scuttled by dissenters in the House, but the combined support of the White House and Senate means compromise backers have the heavy advantage when dealing with House leaders.

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-compromise-policy-20100722,0,3975954.story?page=2

"Days before the compromise was announced, NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden and Deputy Administrator Lori Garver told its two champions -- U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas — that NASA could not finish the proposed new rocket before 2020, according to three sources present at the meetings."

Did I hear that correctly? You are telling me that NASA (MSFC) is going to take a decade to build a vehicle based on existing technology!?! Infrastructure, Tooling, People, Process, etc etc, etc,...?

Did I get that right, one that has been studied and traded nearly to death since the 80's.

I have another congressional action to propose, these 2 jokers need to be fired if not for this outrage but their actions to date, This is outrageous waste.

What in Marshall's recent (say over the past 25 years) launch vehicle development history actually makes this sound suspect?  Just curious. 

Two other points:
1-You left out the quote in most of those articles stating that that comment was based on an earlier budget that had a bit less set aside for SLS and capsule work. 
2-Even if you believe the DIRECT numbers and that they'll survive contact with MSFC reality, they're budgeting a lot less for Orion than under CxP and that wasn't going to have Orion ready to fly until after 2016.  There's reason to be worried here that there isn't enough money being budgeted to meet the Senate's timelines.

But yeah, please shoot the messengers.

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Pheogh on 07/23/2010 05:28 PM
According to the article, their estimate of 2020 was for a different level of funding. Augustine also estimated early 2020s for a SD-HLV.

That was the 130 -150mT vehicle not the 70-100mT vehicle (J-130). Even Sidemounts development doesn't stretch out to 2020. This is low rate demagoguery and it seems like Nelson and crew see it for what it is (listen to his q/a at the press conference).

I think if this package does go forward NASA will need leadership that supports it not this "word" machine.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/23/2010 05:33 PM
http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-compromise-policy-20100722,0,3975954.story?page=2

"Days before the compromise was announced, NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden and Deputy Administrator Lori Garver told its two champions -- U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas — that NASA could not finish the proposed new rocket before 2020, according to three sources present at the meetings."

Did I hear that correctly? You are telling me that NASA (MSFC) is going to take a decade to build a vehicle based on existing technology!?! Infrastructure, Tooling, People, Process, etc etc, etc,...?

Did I get that right, one that has been studied and traded nearly to death since the 80's.

I have another congressional action to propose, these 2 jokers need to be fired if not for this outrage but their actions to date, This is outrageous waste.

What in Marshall's recent (say over the past 25 years) launch vehicle development history actually makes this sound suspect?  Just curious. 

Two other points:
1-You left out the quote in most of those articles stating that that comment was based on an earlier budget that had a bit less set aside for SLS and capsule work. 
2-Even if you believe the DIRECT numbers and that they'll survive contact with MSFC reality, they're budgeting a lot less for Orion than under CxP and that wasn't going to have Orion ready to fly until after 2016.  There's reason to be worried here that there isn't enough money being budgeted to meet the Senate's timelines.

But yeah, please shoot the messengers.

~Jon

I thought Ares I was the long pole (not Orion) under Constellation. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/23/2010 05:41 PM
According to the article, their estimate of 2020 was for a different level of funding. Augustine also estimated early 2020s for a SD-HLV.

That was the 130 -150mT vehicle not the 70-100mT vehicle (J-130). Even Sidemounts development doesn't stretch out to 2020. This is low rate demagoguery and it seems like Nelson and crew see it for what it is (listen to his q/a at the press conference).

I think if this package does go forward NASA will need leadership that supports it not this "word" machine.

Fair enough but for all we know Bolden may have been talking about the HLV with the upperstage. That's why I don't like these second hand reports, they provide no context.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: sdsds on 07/23/2010 05:46 PM
I think the complaint is that it's less than the money budgeted previously for Ares I and Orion over the next three years.  [...]  SDLVers will argue that it's simply cheaper to do SDLV but it worries some people. 

Yes.  Supporters of the Senate plan will also argue that it's simply cheaper to do Orion when Orion is relatively unconstrained by the capability limitations of its launcher.  The mass mismatch between Orion and J-130 decouples the two systems, allowing each to bloat freely without constraining the other.

Whereas true SDLV has been studied to death, since even before Shuttle was flying. 

[...] if (huge if) NASA decides to implement the simplest DIRECT architecture to meet Congress' requirements, I have no faith that the budget and schedule will be met. 

Looking at NASA's human spaceflight design capabilities with a pessimistic eye, the hope is that the Senate is asking NASA to do a task so easy, even the NASA culture of today can't mess it up.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/23/2010 05:49 PM
http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-compromise-policy-20100722,0,3975954.story?page=2

"Days before the compromise was announced, NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden and Deputy Administrator Lori Garver told its two champions -- U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas — that NASA could not finish the proposed new rocket before 2020, according to three sources present at the meetings."

Did I hear that correctly? You are telling me that NASA (MSFC) is going to take a decade to build a vehicle based on existing technology!?! Infrastructure, Tooling, People, Process, etc etc, etc,...?

Did I get that right, one that has been studied and traded nearly to death since the 80's.

I have another congressional action to propose, these 2 jokers need to be fired if not for this outrage but their actions to date, This is outrageous waste.

What in Marshall's recent (say over the past 25 years) launch vehicle development history actually makes this sound suspect?  Just curious. 

Two other points:
1-You left out the quote in most of those articles stating that that comment was based on an earlier budget that had a bit less set aside for SLS and capsule work. 
2-Even if you believe the DIRECT numbers and that they'll survive contact with MSFC reality, they're budgeting a lot less for Orion than under CxP and that wasn't going to have Orion ready to fly until after 2016.  There's reason to be worried here that there isn't enough money being budgeted to meet the Senate's timelines.

But yeah, please shoot the messengers.

~Jon

I thought Ares I was the long pole (not Orion) under Constellation. 

Yeah, but the Senate Bill doesn't necessarily fund Orion as it was currently being designed.  Depending on how much rework is necessary to make Orion back into a BEO from the start vehicle, this could add up.  More importantly, while at the previous budget, Orion wasn't the long pole in the tent, this budget gives the new crew module less than the old budget.  I think there's reason for questioning if this will really be ready by 2016, even if the DIRECT guys have models that show it should be easy. 

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jongoff on 07/23/2010 05:54 PM
Looking at NASA's human spaceflight design capabilities with a pessimistic eye, the hope is that the Senate is asking NASA to do a task so easy, even the NASA culture of today can't mess it up.

Unfortunately, even if they do screw it up, it's not like failure to complete a launch vehicle program has *ever* resulted in negative feedback for MSFC. 

~Jon
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/23/2010 05:56 PM
http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-nasa-compromise-policy-20100722,0,3975954.story?page=2

"Days before the compromise was announced, NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden and Deputy Administrator Lori Garver told its two champions -- U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas — that NASA could not finish the proposed new rocket before 2020, according to three sources present at the meetings."

Did I hear that correctly? You are telling me that NASA (MSFC) is going to take a decade to build a vehicle based on existing technology!?! Infrastructure, Tooling, People, Process, etc etc, etc,...?

Did I get that right, one that has been studied and traded nearly to death since the 80's.

I have another congressional action to propose, these 2 jokers need to be fired if not for this outrage but their actions to date, This is outrageous waste.

What in Marshall's recent (say over the past 25 years) launch vehicle development history actually makes this sound suspect?  Just curious. 

Two other points:
1-You left out the quote in most of those articles stating that that comment was based on an earlier budget that had a bit less set aside for SLS and capsule work. 
2-Even if you believe the DIRECT numbers and that they'll survive contact with MSFC reality, they're budgeting a lot less for Orion than under CxP and that wasn't going to have Orion ready to fly until after 2016.  There's reason to be worried here that there isn't enough money being budgeted to meet the Senate's timelines.

But yeah, please shoot the messengers.

~Jon

I thought Ares I was the long pole (not Orion) under Constellation. 

Yeah, but the Senate Bill doesn't necessarily fund Orion as it was currently being designed.  Depending on how much rework is necessary to make Orion back into a BEO from the start vehicle, this could add up.  More importantly, while at the previous budget, Orion wasn't the long pole in the tent, this budget gives the new crew module less than the old budget.  I think there's reason for questioning if this will really be ready by 2016, even if the DIRECT guys have models that show it should be easy. 

~Jon

Given the fact that BEO Orion is actually a backup to commercial crew for ISS under the Senate Bill, maybe the risk is an acceptable one. Of course, this assumes that commercial crew is funded...

The other alternative that is being offered by the House is to continue Ares I but it provides almost no funding for commercial crew. The House plan is riskier as it is likely that neither Ares I nor commercial crew will be ready for 2016 under their bill. Plus, it also doesn't give you BEO capability.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: sdsds on 07/23/2010 06:36 PM
I'm glad that Bolden and Garver reminded Congress that doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is one definition of insanity.  They want a HLV in LESS time with LESS money than what they were willing to do for Ares [...].  They are dooming NASA to failure once again.   

There is a diagnostic technique sometimes used with young children who may be experiencing psychological difficulties.  The child is presented with a drawing of a simple scene -- perhaps a house with a tree in the front yard -- and is asked to make a copy of the drawing.  Based on various characteristics of the result and on discussions about it with the child, the therapist can better understand underlying factors that may be causing the child difficulties.

In a sense, the Senate's proposal presents a drawing of a Jupiter 130, and asks NASA to reproduce it.  I predict NASA will in fact create a nice drawing of rocket, but that the drawing will include a fairly elaborate upper stage, and possibly also a pony, both of which will be characterized as "essential".  A small area on the forehead of the pony will be marked with an asterisk, and the footnote will indicate that a horn at this location would make the pony into a highly valued unicorn, which would in turn provide the functionality needed for efficient Martian surface ISRU.

After long discussions with NASA representatives about Martian surface ISRU, unicorns, and ponies, the Senate will conclude that in comparison the idea of an upper stage isn't all that crazy.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/23/2010 06:48 PM
The Senate CJS appropriations bill is S.3636.  The appropriations bills are showing up on Thomas now; however the text for S.3636 is still pending there:
http://thomas.loc.gov/home/approp/app11.html

(The accompanying committee report is available and it does have numbers.)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/23/2010 08:42 PM
The Senate CJS appropriations bill is S.3636.  The appropriations bills are showing up on Thomas now; however the text for S.3636 is still pending there:
http://thomas.loc.gov/home/approp/app11.html

(The accompanying committee report is available and it does have numbers.)

Here is the committee report:
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_reports&docid=f:sr229.111.pdf

Not that it actually matters (because the report is not part of the legislation), but there is an obvious typo on page 123, it should say that Orion should be ready by December 31, 2016 (not by FY2014):

Quote
Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle.—The Committee provides
$1,100,000,000 for an Orion crew exploration vehicle that will enable
human transportation beyond low Earth orbit. The vehicle
shall be capable of being launched on the heavy lift launch vehicle
and may also provide alternative access to low Earth orbit, including
the International Space Station by fiscal year 2014.

I am also not sure that it should be called Orion.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/23/2010 09:56 PM
Orion wasn't the long pole in the tent

It might be more accurate to say it wasn't the longest pole in the tent. Recall the Augustine hearing at JSC last year where it was reported that even with an infinite budget, no more design changes, and existing launchers, it wouldn't be until 2015 that humans could fly on Orion. If Ares I had had zero problems (or just been replaced with a less compromised vehicle), we'd all be complaining about the overbudget and schedule-slipped Orion...

Personally, I think that just as the 2016 date for SLS requires a very SD HLV, the same date for the Multipurpose Crew Vehicle really requires not many major changes relative to CxP Orion. The size of the SM fuel tanks may change, and bits and pieces may get added/removed from the cabin, but I seriously doubt there will be any real redesign. Orion is a (mostly) known quantity now, and they're going to want to exploit that the to the fullest.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Spacetime on 07/23/2010 10:28 PM
(http://nasaengineer.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/wwsd14a.jpg)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/23/2010 10:30 PM
The Senate Appropriations NASA 2011 Funding Bill calls for an Orion to be able to fly to the ISS by Fiscal Year 2014. Will this flight be on a SD-HLV(J-130) or Commercial Launch Vehicle?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jorge on 07/23/2010 10:59 PM
The Senate Appropriations NASA 2011 Funding Bill calls for an Orion to be able to fly to the ISS by Fiscal Year 2014. Will this flight be on a SD-HLV(J-130) or Commercial Launch Vehicle?

2014 is almost certainly a typo; earlier drafts had 2016.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Drapper23 on 07/25/2010 08:34 PM
Space X, National Space Society & The Mars Society Support Senate NASA Compromise Funding Bill  http://blog.nss.org/?p=1896   http://www.nss.org/ 
http://www.marssociety.org/portal/mars-society-cheers-senate-committee-approval-of-hlv-funding/
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: CessnaDriver on 07/26/2010 08:06 PM
I was disappointed with NSS during all this.
Planetary Society I gave up on a long time ago.

Mars Society I wasn't watching too closely but they seemed to have
some fight in them.


At least there is unifying now.

Anyone have opinions on what space advocacy groups are best for aggressive support of NASA HSF?

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/26/2010 11:16 PM
I was disappointed with NSS during all this.
Planetary Society I gave up on a long time ago.

Mars Society I wasn't watching too closely but they seemed to have
some fight in them.


At least there is unifying now.

Anyone have opinions on what space advocacy groups are best for aggressive support of NASA HSF?



The best space advocacy group for HSF is CSF. 
NASA HSF doesn't need nor should it have aggressive support.  Hence the lack of advocacy groups.  Its major task for existing occurred more than 40 years ago.  The Cold War is over.  There is no legitimate reason (inspiration being one of the worse) for it to be anymore than it has been.   NASA's charter doesn't require it to do more.  And Govt funded and operated lunar bases are not in the best interest of the USA as a nation.   It is time for private industry, just like it was for aircraft in the 1930's.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/26/2010 11:51 PM

The best space advocacy group for HSF is CSF. 
NASA HSF doesn't need nor should it have aggressive support.  Hence the lack of advocacy groups.  Its major task for existing occurred more than 40 years ago.  The Cold War is over.  There is no legitimate reason (inspiration being one of the worse) for it to be anymore than it has been.   NASA's charter doesn't require it to do more.  And Govt funded and operated lunar bases are not in the best interest of the USA as a nation.   It is time for private industry, just like it was for aircraft in the 1930's.
Absolutely. Looking forward to that. But when will most come to that realization, and stop the endless games playing with NASA.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/27/2010 02:30 PM
The Senate CJS appropriations bill is S.3636.  The appropriations bills are showing up on Thomas now; however the text for S.3636 is still pending there:
http://thomas.loc.gov/home/approp/app11.html

(The accompanying committee report is available and it does have numbers.)

The text of the Senate appropriation bill is now available (NASA starts at page 76):
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_bills&docid=f:s3636pcs.txt.pdf
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/27/2010 02:42 PM
The Mars Society statement is a bit optimistic for my tastes (as usual).  IIRC, they want to build a crew module now for BEO in 2016?   Manned Mars in 2020.   Okay.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/27/2010 03:00 PM
There's another one (unless it was just the format I've seen it - need permission to post - but it'll turn up anyway), where NASA starts on Page 115. Anyone seen it? From Ms. Mikulski. 1.9 billion for HLV in 2011. To be ready for 2016. 11.5 billion cap through 2017.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/27/2010 03:37 PM
There's another one (unless it was just the format I've seen it - need permission to post - but it'll turn up anyway), where NASA starts on Page 115. Anyone seen it? From Ms. Mikulski. 1.9 billion for HLV in 2011. To be ready for 2016. 11.5 billion cap through 2017.

You are thinking about the Committee report (which isn't law) which starts at page 115. The cap that you mention is discussed on page 123 of the Committee Report:
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_reports&docid=f:sr229.111.pdf

This is a better question for 51D Mascot than me but I imagine that some of the changes that appear in the Committee report will appear in the Senate NASA Authorization bill (and not in the Senate Appropriation bill). Appropriation bill generally cover only one year. Authorization bills can cover more than one year.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/27/2010 04:06 PM
Copy that YG!
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Mark S on 07/27/2010 05:16 PM
NASA HSF doesn't need nor should it have aggressive support.  Hence the lack of advocacy groups.  Its major task for existing occurred more than 40 years ago.  The Cold War is over.  There is no legitimate reason (inspiration being one of the worse) for it to be anymore than it has been.   NASA's charter doesn't require it to do more.  And Govt funded and operated lunar bases are not in the best interest of the USA as a nation.   It is time for private industry, just like it was for aircraft in the 1930's.

And which for-profit corporation or other NGO is willing to fund a manned lunar base, research station, or anything else on the moon?  What about just a simple rover, or a sample return mission?  I don't see the govt blocking any privately funded missions to the moon.

But I'm all for private development on the moon. Where is the money going to come from?  Where is the profit?  What is the business justification for a publicly-held corporation to invest that level of funds in a science base?  Heck, corporations don't even fund research on Earth unless there is solid business case for it.  Which is as it should be, if they would just look a little further down the road than then next quarterly report.

You really shouldn't argue against government funded missions unless there are private investors ready to take its place.  Otherwise there simply won't be any exploration or expansion into the Solar system.

Step 1: Build a lunar outpost.
Step 2: ?
Step 3: Profit!

It's always that pesky little Step 2 getting in the way.

Mark S.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: zerm on 07/27/2010 06:07 PM

The best space advocacy group for HSF is CSF. 

CSF? All I know about them is it's run by two X Prize organizers,

Chris- you've made a huge error... you used the terms "X-Prize" and "organizers" in the same sentance. My personal, business experience has shown that the two terms should never be placed in the same paragraph.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Bill White on 07/27/2010 06:13 PM
@ Mark S

Click here for a potential "Step Two" (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=20475.0;attach=238839;image) - - although mileage will vary on whether such ideas are for better or for worse.

Also, I wish I knew which NSF member uploaded the linked photoshop image, so I could thank them. That simple image is worth a whole lot of words.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/27/2010 06:22 PM
And which for-profit corporation or other NGO is willing to fund a manned lunar base, research station, or anything else on the moon?  What about just a simple rover, or a sample return mission?  I don't see the govt blocking any privately funded missions to the moon.

Mark,

SpaceX seems to have been founded with Mars as a long term goal, and apparently Moon along the way.

The only way this makes sense to me is that Elon will use profits from other elements of the business to make this push outwards. I don't know if this is purely philanthropic, or a huge gamble in hopes of a huge payoff. (Or maybe just to be there ready if NASA fails again).

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/27/2010 06:24 PM
NASA HSF doesn't need nor should it have aggressive support.  Hence the lack of advocacy groups.  Its major task for existing occurred more than 40 years ago.  The Cold War is over.  There is no legitimate reason (inspiration being one of the worse) for it to be anymore than it has been.   NASA's charter doesn't require it to do more.  And Govt funded and operated lunar bases are not in the best interest of the USA as a nation.   It is time for private industry, just like it was for aircraft in the 1930's.

And which for-profit corporation or other NGO is willing to fund a manned lunar base, research station, or anything else on the moon?  What about just a simple rover, or a sample return mission?  I don't see the govt blocking any privately funded missions to the moon.

But I'm all for private development on the moon. Where is the money going to come from?  Where is the profit?  What is the business justification for a publicly-held corporation to invest that level of funds in a science base?  Heck, corporations don't even fund research on Earth unless there is solid business case for it.  Which is as it should be, if they would just look a little further down the road than then next quarterly report.

You really shouldn't argue against government funded missions unless there are private investors ready to take its place.  Otherwise there simply won't be any exploration or expansion into the Solar system.

Step 1: Build a lunar outpost.
Step 2: ?
Step 3: Profit!

It's always that pesky little Step 2 getting in the way.

Mark S.

I never said that the US gov't shouldn't have any role in providing some of the funding.  It just shouldn't be a gov't organization (specifically NASA) doing the work.

NASA shouldn't be involved in routine type operations
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/27/2010 06:31 PM
Cool, and pulled that post. I've got them confused with someone else as they don't use that PR company. Coalition for SE is who I was confused with.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/27/2010 08:31 PM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

Quote
SEC. 305. NASA LAUNCH SUPPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURE
9 MODERNIZATION PROGRAM.

10 (a) IN GENERAL.—The Administrator shall carry out
11 a program the primary purpose of which is to prepare in
12 frastructure at the Kennedy Space Center that is needed
13 to enable processing and launch of the Space Launch Sys
14 tem. Vehicle interfaces and other ground processing and
15 payload integration areas should be simplified to minimize
16 overall costs, enhance safety, and complement the purpose
17 of this section.

18 (b) ELEMENTS.—The program required by this sec
19 tion shall include—
20 (1) investments to improve civil and national
21 security operations at the Kennedy Space Center, to
22 enhance the overall capabilities of the Center, and to
23 reduce the long term cost of operations and mainte
24 nance;

1 (2) measures to provide multi-vehicle support,
2 improvements in payload processing, and partnering
3 at the Kennedy Space Center; and
4 (3) such other measures as the Administrator
5 may consider appropriate.

6 (c) REPORT ON NASA LAUNCH SUPPORT AND IN
7 FRASTRUCTURE MODERNIZATION PROGRAM.—
8 (1) REPORT REQUIRED.—Not later than 120
9 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the
10 Administrator shall submit to the appropriate com
11 mittees of Congress a report on the plan for the im
12 plementation of the NASA launch support and infra
13 structure modernization program.
14 (2) ELEMENTS.—The report required by this
15 subsection shall include—
16 (A) a description of the ground infrastruc
17 ture plan tied to the Space Launch System and
18 potential ground investment activities at other
19 NASA centers related to supporting the devel
20 opment of the Space Launch System;
21 (B) a description of proposed initiatives in
22 tended to be conducted jointly or in cooperation
23 with Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Flor
24 ida, or other installations or components of the
25 United States Government; and

1 (C) a description of plans to use funds au
2 thorized to be appropriated by this Act to im
3 prove non-NASA facilities, which plans shall in
4 clude a business plan outlining the nature and
5 scope of investments planned by other parties.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Proponent on 07/28/2010 12:02 AM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

Obama made noise about that during his April speech at KSC.  My take at the time was that was what that it was intended to maintain NASA-related employment in Florida in order to make the termination of Shuttle and Constellation politically acceptable.  Obviously Nelson and friends weren't satisfied with this.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: JDCampbell on 07/28/2010 03:48 AM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

A taxpayer subsidized commercial crew development fund is the problem. 

 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/28/2010 03:53 AM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

Quote
SEC. 305. NASA LAUNCH SUPPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURE
9 MODERNIZATION PROGRAM.

10 (a) IN GENERAL.—The Administrator shall carry out
11 a program the primary purpose of which is to prepare in
12 frastructure at the Kennedy Space Center that is needed
13 to enable processing and launch of the Space Launch Sys
14 tem. Vehicle interfaces and other ground processing and
15 payload integration areas should be simplified to minimize
16 overall costs, enhance safety, and complement the purpose
17 of this section.

18 (b) ELEMENTS.—The program required by this sec
19 tion shall include—
20 (1) investments to improve civil and national
21 security operations at the Kennedy Space Center, to
22 enhance the overall capabilities of the Center, and to
23 reduce the long term cost of operations and mainte
24 nance;

1 (2) measures to provide multi-vehicle support,
2 improvements in payload processing, and partnering
3 at the Kennedy Space Center; and
4 (3) such other measures as the Administrator
5 may consider appropriate.

6 (c) REPORT ON NASA LAUNCH SUPPORT AND IN
7 FRASTRUCTURE MODERNIZATION PROGRAM.—
8 (1) REPORT REQUIRED.—Not later than 120
9 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the
10 Administrator shall submit to the appropriate com
11 mittees of Congress a report on the plan for the im
12 plementation of the NASA launch support and infra
13 structure modernization program.
14 (2) ELEMENTS.—The report required by this
15 subsection shall include—
16 (A) a description of the ground infrastruc
17 ture plan tied to the Space Launch System and
18 potential ground investment activities at other
19 NASA centers related to supporting the devel
20 opment of the Space Launch System;
21 (B) a description of proposed initiatives in
22 tended to be conducted jointly or in cooperation
23 with Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Flor
24 ida, or other installations or components of the
25 United States Government; and

1 (C) a description of plans to use funds au
2 thorized to be appropriated by this Act to im
3 prove non-NASA facilities, which plans shall in
4 clude a business plan outlining the nature and
5 scope of investments planned by other parties.

I would say your interpretation is reasonable. The Senate bill essentially retitled the "21st Century Launch Complex" line in the Budget Request and included language to provide some flexibility in its use as part of the larger effort to assist in the development of the Space Launch System (i.e., "evolvable HLV). The flexibility notion is illuminated a little more in the reporting requirement that is part of Section 305. Since the initial request was made in the context of the "new" Obama plan, which did not contemplate near-term HLV development, it was determined that it made sense to "redefine" the effort in the context of the compromise approach outlined in the Senate bill, and taking into account the Senate bill's effort to support COTS cargo development and retain elements of the early, preparatory stages of launch capacity that not only support COTS cargo, but would have applicability to potential Crew capability developments. It still retains a primary focus on KSC (broadly speaking) improvements and supporting activities, of course. The Report to accompany the Senate bill when formally reported to the Senate will likely include some clarifications of the intent of this and other portions of the bill.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/28/2010 04:46 AM
Thanks.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/28/2010 11:04 AM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

A taxpayer subsidized commercial crew development fund is the problem. 

 

Better than taxpayer subsidized launch vehicle development and operations
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/28/2010 12:19 PM
...The Report to accompany the Senate bill when formally reported to the Senate will likely include some clarifications of the intent of this and other portions of the bill.
Any better idea on when that will happen?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/28/2010 01:31 PM
...The Report to accompany the Senate bill when formally reported to the Senate will likely include some clarifications of the intent of this and other portions of the bill.
Any better idea on when that will happen?


Possibly another day or two, but could slip to early next week.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: kkattula on 07/28/2010 01:46 PM
So is the House more likely to pass the Senate bill (assuming the Senate pass it), or to pass its own bill and go to conference?

I'm guessing, politically, reps get more credo for having actually voted to protect sacred cows, even if the conference bill later kills them.

When are we likely to see each authorization bill (and conference if required) passed?

Ditto appropriations.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/28/2010 02:28 PM
The House will not pass the Senate bill. It will pass its own bill and it will then go to a conference committee in order to draft a common bill. Acording to 51D Mascot, the Senate will likely have the upper hand in negotiations with the House given that the President supports the Senate bill and that the Senate bill seems to have more unanimous approval than does the House bill.

However, it is a bit of a strange situation as some House representatives that favour the compromise in the Senate bill would still rather get the House bill passed as quickly as possible in order to go to conference committee as soon as possible.     

Senator Bill Nelson said that it would take a miracle to pass the authorization bill before October 1st. But he then added that he believed in miracles.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/28/2010 02:32 PM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

A taxpayer subsidized commercial crew development fund is the problem. 

 

Better than taxpayer subsidized launch vehicle development and operations

In a way, NASA paying for the infrastructure for commercial crew is like building an airport, you don't usually ask the airline companies to build the airport. If you don't build an airport in one city, the airlines will simply go to a city where there is an airport.  In this case, the infrastructure for commercial crew will be provided at KSC.

You could also argue that the development of the aviation industry also depended a lot on the government but they are still considered commercial. Airbus was heavily subsidised by European governments but Airbus is still considered commercial. In Canada, Bombardier bought Canadair from the Canadian government. Although the development of Boeing airplanes was not directly subsidized by the US government, Boeing has received a lot of other government contracts that has helped them be a viable company.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/28/2010 03:36 PM
So is the House more likely to pass the Senate bill (assuming the Senate pass it), or to pass its own bill and go to conference?

I'm guessing, politically, reps get more credo for having actually voted to protect sacred cows, even if the conference bill later kills them.

When are we likely to see each authorization bill (and conference if required) passed?

Ditto appropriations.

I would say at this point it's likely that whichever bill can get to the calendar and pass will then become the vehicle for working out differences and arriving at a consensus. That consensus can possibly be achieved through an informal "preconference" process--as was done in 2008 with the NASA authorization bill enacted that year--rather than a formal Conference. With so little time remaining in the session, the situation is fluid and dynamic and unpredictable so my suggestion is to sit tight and stay tuned.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/28/2010 03:53 PM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

A taxpayer subsidized commercial crew development fund is the problem. 

 

Better than taxpayer subsidized launch vehicle development and operations

So then you are saying ULA will get none of the money allocated to "commercial" crew. 

Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/28/2010 05:41 PM
So is the House more likely to pass the Senate bill (assuming the Senate pass it), or to pass its own bill and go to conference?

I'm guessing, politically, reps get more credo for having actually voted to protect sacred cows, even if the conference bill later kills them.

When are we likely to see each authorization bill (and conference if required) passed?

Ditto appropriations.

I would say at this point it's likely that whichever bill can get to the calendar and pass will then become the vehicle for working out differences and arriving at a consensus. That consensus can possibly be achieved through an informal "preconference" process--as was done in 2008 with the NASA authorization bill enacted that year--rather than a formal Conference. With so little time remaining in the session, the situation is fluid and dynamic and unpredictable so my suggestion is to sit tight and stay tuned.

I hope that the House bill doesn't become the starting point. The Senate bill has a lot of the pinciples of FY2011 and of the recommendations of the Augustine committee. It can be sold as a compromise. That can't be said about the House Bill. I would rather have a bill enacted after October 1, 2010 that is a true compromise.   
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/28/2010 06:25 PM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

A taxpayer subsidized commercial crew development fund is the problem. 

 

Better than taxpayer subsidized launch vehicle development and operations

So then you are saying ULA will get none of the money allocated to "commercial" crew. 


\
Clarification

Better than gov't managed launch vehicle development and operations
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Danderman on 07/28/2010 06:35 PM
The language of the legislation excludes from due consideration the Atlas 5 Phase 2, which was a competitive option to SDLV with its own merits as shown in the Augustine commission.

Politicians are clearly preferable to evaluate technical options, not engineers.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/28/2010 06:58 PM

I would say at this point it's likely that whichever bill can get to the calendar and pass will then become the vehicle for working out differences and arriving at a consensus. That consensus can possibly be achieved through an informal "preconference" process--as was done in 2008 with the NASA authorization bill enacted that year--rather than a formal Conference. With so little time remaining in the session, the situation is fluid and dynamic and unpredictable so my suggestion is to sit tight and stay tuned.

I hope that the House bill doesn't become the starting point. The Senate bill has a lot of the pinciples of FY2011 and of the recommendations of the Augustine committee. It can be sold as a compromise. That can't be said about the House Bill. I would rather have a bill enacted after October 1, 2010 that is a true compromise.   

In your striving for purity don't forget all the skilled personnel on the Shuttle/SRB/Cx/Orion side who have been laid off or will be on Oct 1st due to this stalemate. Some of these people will be needed again once a SDLV of some persuasion is agreed. It is best that a bill is passed before then to avoid crucial skill set loss even if the bill isn't perfect. Remember the enemy of the good is always the perfect ;).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/28/2010 07:06 PM
One thing that I noticed in the Senate bill is that there is $428.6 million in FY2011 for NASA launch support and infrastructure modernization program.

Most of this money (in Section 305) seems to be directed towards the HLV but I imagine that some of the funds could also be used for SpaceX, ULA and perhaps Orbital to improve their launch pad and service tower in order to be able to carry astronauts.

In other words, I would imagine that the launch pad and service tower costs for ULA, SpaceX or Orbital would probably not be part of the commercial crew development funds.   Any thoughts on this?

A taxpayer subsidized commercial crew development fund is the problem. 

 

Better than taxpayer subsidized launch vehicle development and operations

So then you are saying ULA will get none of the money allocated to "commercial" crew. 


\
Clarification

Better than gov't managed launch vehicle development and operations

Just out of curiosity since I presume you were around when the EELV's were in development. 

When the USAF forked over 1 billion to then Boeing and Lock-Mart, there were no requirements that went with it?  As a consequence to having that funding they were totally hands-off?

What oversight role does the Air Force have today with respect to the launch vehicles design and operations?  Do they have a program office?  If so, what does it do?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/28/2010 07:08 PM
In your striving for purity don't forget all the skilled personnel on the Shuttle/SRB/Cx/Orion side who have been laid off or will be on Oct 1st due to this stalemate. Some of these people will be needed again once a SDLV of some persuasion is agreed. It is best that a bill is passed before then to avoid crucial skill set loss even if the bill isn't perfect.
Things could change, but it's still sounding like the first appropriations bill to be passed for FY 2011 will be a continuing resolution:
http://www.spacepolitics.com/2010/07/27/wolf-makes-few-predictions-about-the-nasa-appropriations-process/

Quote
On the timing of an appropriations bill, Wolf said it was likely there would be some kind of continuing resolution (CR), although he wasn’t sure how long would run. “I think a lot will depend on what will happen in the elections,” he said. He thought there was a “reasonable chance” that the CR would extend into January and a new Congress, one that Wolf believes, at least on the House side, will be in the hands of the Republican party. He was particularly wary of anything done by a post-election “lame duck” session in November or December, including passage of an omnibus bill that wraps up multiple appropriations into a single bill. “I think the less that happens in a lame duck session the better.”

The language in the bill could still address workforce issues, but the ones we've seen drafted/introduced may be set aside for the elections.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/28/2010 07:16 PM

I would say at this point it's likely that whichever bill can get to the calendar and pass will then become the vehicle for working out differences and arriving at a consensus. That consensus can possibly be achieved through an informal "preconference" process--as was done in 2008 with the NASA authorization bill enacted that year--rather than a formal Conference. With so little time remaining in the session, the situation is fluid and dynamic and unpredictable so my suggestion is to sit tight and stay tuned.

I hope that the House bill doesn't become the starting point. The Senate bill has a lot of the pinciples of FY2011 and of the recommendations of the Augustine committee. It can be sold as a compromise. That can't be said about the House Bill. I would rather have a bill enacted after October 1, 2010 that is a true compromise.   

In your striving for purity don't forget all the skilled personnel on the Shuttle/SRB/Cx/Orion side who have been laid off or will be on Oct 1st due to this stalemate. Some of these people will be needed again once a SDLV of some persuasion is agreed. It is best that a bill is passed before then to avoid crucial skill set loss even if the bill isn't perfect. Remember the enemy of the good is always the perfect ;).

Don't forget that the House bill would likely continue Ares I. So it's the ennemy of a SD-HLV as well.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/28/2010 07:29 PM
My read of the tea leaves is that the House stays in denial as we go into recess. Way too pigheaded and fearful for otherwise.

I'd hate to be rushing around on the Hill to make this happen right now.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jim on 07/28/2010 08:27 PM

1.  When the USAF forked over 1 billion to then Boeing and Lock-Mart, there were no requirements that went with it?  As a consequence to having that funding they were totally hands-off?

2.  What oversight role does the Air Force have today with respect to the launch vehicles design and operations?  Do they have a program office?  If so, what does it do?

1.  There were a few requirements documents, performance based.  The USAF had no requirements on the shape of the vehicle, engines, propellants, materials, construction methods, launch ops conops, etc.  Just put these types of payload into these orbits and reduce the cost by 25%. 

2.  They have a program office.  It is there to buy the EELV's and to make sure they get what they pay for.  Much like NASA's LSP.  Aerospace is their support.  The USAF, NRO and NASA collaborate on monitoring the EELV fleet.   NASA has resident offices in Denver and Decatur, for fleet insight and the USAF is following suit.

The USAF program office has 650 government, military, aerospace, and contractor personnel but this number also included Delta II and  Launch and Test Range System Programs.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/29/2010 03:47 AM
So is the House more likely to pass the Senate bill (assuming the Senate pass it), or to pass its own bill and go to conference?

I'm guessing, politically, reps get more credo for having actually voted to protect sacred cows, even if the conference bill later kills them.

When are we likely to see each authorization bill (and conference if required) passed?

Ditto appropriations.

I would say at this point it's likely that whichever bill can get to the calendar and pass will then become the vehicle for working out differences and arriving at a consensus. That consensus can possibly be achieved through an informal "preconference" process--as was done in 2008 with the NASA authorization bill enacted that year--rather than a formal Conference. With so little time remaining in the session, the situation is fluid and dynamic and unpredictable so my suggestion is to sit tight and stay tuned.

I hope that the House bill doesn't become the starting point. The Senate bill has a lot of the pinciples of FY2011 and of the recommendations of the Augustine committee. It can be sold as a compromise. That can't be said about the House Bill. I would rather have a bill enacted after October 1, 2010 that is a true compromise.   

I can say this with absolute assurance. The House bill, in it's current form, even as amended in Committee, would NEVER pass the Senate. Unlike the House bill, which was essentially an internal, Majority committee product--at least according to minority committee staffers who didn't see the draft until shortly before it was published--the Senate bill was written from the beginning in a bipartisan collaborative effort that included reaching out beyond the Commerce Committee membership to any and every Member known to have an interest or concern with NASA and its programs, and building a consensus around the core elements of the bill, taking all those interests into account and accommodating them to the point there was a unanimous vote to report the bill. It already comes very close to representing a cohesive Senate position, supportable by the body as a whole. The very close adherence of the Senate Appropriations subcommittee AND full Committee last week to the allocations and amounts--and associated redirection of the appropriations lines in the policy and program direction reflected in the Commerce Committee bill, very clearly helped underscore that point.

Of course, the "proof" of that assertion will have to wait for the request for the Senate to adopt it by unanimous consent as well, but I for one have never, in 35 years in this business, been more confident at this stage that such a UC request will be achievable.

That suggests to me that, even if the House takes up and passes its bill before their recess begins on Friday, as it appears they are considering doing (in a way which would not allow for any amendments from the floor of the House, which would not be acceptable to a lot of House members who want a chance to "refine" it further, and in a way closer to the Senate language), and sends that bill to the Senate, it will be referred to the Senate Commerce Committee where it will sit unless and until the unlikely event the Senate could not pass its compromise/consensus-based bill and needed to turn to the House-passed bill as the legislative vehicle to use to enact a NASA Authorization bill.

Even then, before passage by the Senate, it would be amended in its entirety with substitute language for the entire bill which either reflected precisely the language of the Senate bill or--assuming the House is serious about enacting an authorization bill--language agreed upon in the course of the sort of "preconferencing" activity I described in an earlier post.

If the House proceeds to seek consideration of the Science Committee reported bill, there must be a vote on agreeing to suspend the rules for that bill and move it to the Suspension Calendar. A vote against that motion would NOT necessarily represent a vote against the notion of a NASA authorization bill, or even this particular bill, but could be a very reasonable and responsible vote that suggests more time is needed for members of the House to digest a 100-plus page bill that was JUST published yesterday before attempting to force the House to accept it simply as reported.

It will be an interesting next few days in the House--and next week in the Senate, before it, too, breaks for the August recess.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: sdsds on 07/29/2010 04:04 AM
When the USAF forked over 1 billion to then Boeing and Lock-Mart, there were no requirements that went with it?  As a consequence to having that funding they were totally hands-off?

That description doesn't capture the essence of the EELV acquisition strategy.  From the horse's mouth:

Quote from: USAF
EELV Fact Sheet (http://www.losangeles.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=5324)
Acquisition History

The initial phase of the EELV program, Low Cost Concept Validation (LCCV), was successfully completed in November 1996. LCCV emphasized competition in preliminary designs and risk reduction demonstrations. Four $30-million contracts were awarded during this phase to Alliant Techsystems, The Boeing Company, Lockheed Martin Corporation and McDonnell Douglas Aerospace. (Note: Boeing acquired McDonnell Douglas at about the time this competition ended.)

During the second phase, pre-engineering and manufacturing development, two $60-million, 17-month contracts were awarded to The Boeing Company and Lockheed Martin Corporation to continue refining their system concepts and complete a detailed system design.

EELV phase three began in October 1998 with the award of two development agreements and two initial launch services contracts (known as Buy 1) totaling more than $3 billion.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: psloss on 07/29/2010 01:11 PM
That suggests to me that, even if the House takes up and passes its bill before their recess begins on Friday, as it appears they are considering doing (in a way which would not allow for any amendments from the floor of the House, which would not be acceptable to a lot of House members who want a chance to "refine" it further, and in a way closer to the Senate language), and sends that bill to the Senate, it will be referred to the Senate Commerce Committee where it will sit unless and until the unlikely event the Senate could not pass its compromise/consensus-based bill and needed to turn to the House-passed bill as the legislative vehicle to use to enact a NASA Authorization bill.


It will be an interesting next few days in the House--and next week in the Senate, before it, too, breaks for the August recess.
Is it possible now that the Senate will hold off on putting the Commerce committee's authorization bill on the Calendar until after the House bill?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/29/2010 02:02 PM
Elon Musk is asking us to call our Congressionnal representative to oppose passage of the House bill on Friday:

Quote
SpaceX

Your Help Urgently Needed to Save the Future of Human Spaceflight

If you care about the future of American space exploration, your urgent help is necessary. The only hope for the average citizen to one day travel to space is in danger due to the actions of certain members of Congress. SpaceX does not have the enormous lobbying power of the big government contractors to stop them, however with your help the day can still be saved.

NASA’s Authorization bill (H.R. 5781) will be debated on the floor of the US House of Representatives tomorrow. Despite the imminent retirement of the Space Shuttle, H.R. 5781 authorizes over five times as many taxpayer dollars to fly NASA astronauts on the Russian Soyuz than it invests in developing an American commercial alternative, moreover at a time when jobs are sorely needed in the United States. Quite simply, this bill represents the sort of senseless pork politics that has driven our national debt to the point where our economy can barely service it.

The bill is expected to be brought to the House floor this Friday under a special “suspension of the rules,” which is a procedure that limits debate and amendments.

Telephone your Congressional representative right away via the House Switchboard at (202) 225-3121 and ask them to vote NO on H.R. 5781, and instead support the bill unanimously agreed to in the Senate last week.

Your five minutes will make a critical difference, ensuring an exciting and inspiring future in space travel! SpaceX rarely asks you to take action, so you know it really matters when we do.

--Elon--
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/29/2010 02:31 PM
That suggests to me that, even if the House takes up and passes its bill before their recess begins on Friday, as it appears they are considering doing (in a way which would not allow for any amendments from the floor of the House, which would not be acceptable to a lot of House members who want a chance to "refine" it further, and in a way closer to the Senate language), and sends that bill to the Senate, it will be referred to the Senate Commerce Committee where it will sit unless and until the unlikely event the Senate could not pass its compromise/consensus-based bill and needed to turn to the House-passed bill as the legislative vehicle to use to enact a NASA Authorization bill.


It will be an interesting next few days in the House--and next week in the Senate, before it, too, breaks for the August recess.
Is it possible now that the Senate will hold off on putting the Commerce committee's authorization bill on the Calendar until after the House bill?


The Senate is moving forward in the normal process to pass its bill, without regard to what the House does; that's just the normal course of business, that leads eventually to a conference process between the two bodies to determine the content of a final product.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/29/2010 02:50 PM
That suggests to me that, even if the House takes up and passes its bill before their recess begins on Friday, as it appears they are considering doing (in a way which would not allow for any amendments from the floor of the House, which would not be acceptable to a lot of House members who want a chance to "refine" it further, and in a way closer to the Senate language), and sends that bill to the Senate, it will be referred to the Senate Commerce Committee where it will sit unless and until the unlikely event the Senate could not pass its compromise/consensus-based bill and needed to turn to the House-passed bill as the legislative vehicle to use to enact a NASA Authorization bill.


It will be an interesting next few days in the House--and next week in the Senate, before it, too, breaks for the August recess.
Is it possible now that the Senate will hold off on putting the Commerce committee's authorization bill on the Calendar until after the House bill?


The Senate is moving forward in the normal process to pass its bill, without regard to what the House does; that's just the normal course of business, that leads eventually to a conference process between the two bodies to determine the content of a final product.

In your opinion, is the quick passage of an unamended House bill a good thing or a bad thing?

I imagine that it's a good thing in the sense that it moves thing frowards. But I imagine that it could also be seen as a bad thing in the sense that it could force the Senate to compromise even further on a bill that already strikes a very difficult balance.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/29/2010 03:20 PM
The Senate is moving forward in the normal process to pass its bill, without regard to what the House does; that's just the normal course of business, that leads eventually to a conference process between the two bodies to determine the content of a final product.

Does anyone know if there's a published version of the latest draft of the Senate bill, eg including the change to a 130mT upper limit in place of the original 150mT?

Edit: haven't been able to find anything more up-to-date than the Rockefeller PDF.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/29/2010 03:34 PM
Does anyone know if there's a published version of the latest draft of the Senate bill, eg including the change to a 130mT upper limit in place of the original 150mT?

It was never 130 and 150 metric tonnes, but 130 and 150 US short tons, which are 118 and 136 metric tonnes, respectively. Significant, as the 118 tonne number is very close to the capacity of both the Sidemount and Inline Block III designs in the SD-HLV study (113 tonnes).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/29/2010 03:35 PM
It's not an upper limit, it's a minimum growth target, '130 tons or more'.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/29/2010 03:38 PM
Does anyone know if there's a published version of the latest draft of the Senate bill, eg including the change to a 130mT upper limit in place of the original 150mT?

It was never 130 and 150 metric tonnes, but 130 and 150 US short tons, which are 118 and 136 metric tonnes, respectively. Significant, as the 118 tonne number is very close to the capacity of both the Sidemount and Inline Block III designs in the SD-HLV study (113 tonnes).

Senator Nelson said metric tonnes in the press conference. He said that the HLV should be between 75mt to 100mt.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/29/2010 03:42 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: rjholling on 07/29/2010 03:48 PM
118mT sounds like they just picked the number based upon the lift capability of Saturn V which was 118mT.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/29/2010 03:51 PM
That suggests to me that, even if the House takes up and passes its bill before their recess begins on Friday, as it appears they are considering doing (in a way which would not allow for any amendments from the floor of the House, which would not be acceptable to a lot of House members who want a chance to "refine" it further, and in a way closer to the Senate language), and sends that bill to the Senate, it will be referred to the Senate Commerce Committee where it will sit unless and until the unlikely event the Senate could not pass its compromise/consensus-based bill and needed to turn to the House-passed bill as the legislative vehicle to use to enact a NASA Authorization bill.


It will be an interesting next few days in the House--and next week in the Senate, before it, too, breaks for the August recess.
Is it possible now that the Senate will hold off on putting the Commerce committee's authorization bill on the Calendar until after the House bill?


The Senate is moving forward in the normal process to pass its bill, without regard to what the House does; that's just the normal course of business, that leads eventually to a conference process between the two bodies to determine the content of a final product.

In your opinion, is the quick passage of an unamended House bill a good thing or a bad thing?

I imagine that it's a good thing in the sense that it moves thing frowards. But I imagine that it could also be seen as a bad thing in the sense that it could force the Senate to compromise even further on a bill that already strikes a very difficult balance.

Obviously, any amendments that might be offered that would bring the House bill closer to the Senate, particularly in the areas of HLV development (avoiding the potential for just authorizing a "do-over" on Constellation), commercial development (especially COTS-cargo), and ISS sustainability and utilization, would be better, as those are the areas where the Senate will have to remain firmest, due to the nature of the compromise already reflected in that bill which is essential to Senate passage. So not allowing any amendments does mean the starting points for discussion are wider apart. Of course, there could also be amendments which drove those points still further apart, too, so there's always that risk in opening a bill to amendment. No way to predict that.

The key thing is that, because of the way the Senate bill was produced, and then its programmatic allocations reflected in CJS appropriations language--which required an even expanded level of consensus--it is very well understood where the lines have to be drawn within the Senate to maintain support. So, from that standpoint, having the Senate language as the legislative "vehicle" is the preferred position, from my vantage point.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Lars_J on 07/29/2010 03:57 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: jkumpire on 07/29/2010 04:02 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

Is that your opinion, or do you have clear knowledge of the future?

I think you assume too much about what tomorrow may bring.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/29/2010 04:04 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

While retention of a skilled workforce and understood and proven hardware should seem like an obviously smart thing to do, you and many who spout your uninformed dogma over and over again is boardering on annoyance.

A shuttle derived vehicle in no way will guarantee the workforce transitions in a 1:1 format.  The most significant portion of the STS workfoce, the orbiter - which equates to the highest number of heads from ground operations, engineering and mission operations, will not all transfer to SLS or whatever it ends up being called. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: yg1968 on 07/29/2010 04:07 PM
The Senate is moving forward in the normal process to pass its bill, without regard to what the House does; that's just the normal course of business, that leads eventually to a conference process between the two bodies to determine the content of a final product.

Does anyone know if there's a published version of the latest draft of the Senate bill, eg including the change to a 130mT upper limit in place of the original 150mT?

Edit: haven't been able to find anything more up-to-date than the Rockefeller PDF.

cheers, Martin

This is the latest version of the Senate Bill that I have seen (which includes the 130t requirement):
http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=20a7a8bd-50f4-4474-bf1d-f0a6a8824b01

Some of the numbers were later changed during the appropriation process, see here (starts at page 115):
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_reports&docid=f:sr229.111.pdf
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Lars_J on 07/29/2010 04:16 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

While retention of a skilled workforce and understood and proven hardware should seem like an obviously smart thing to do, you and many who spout your uninformed dogma over and over again is boardering on annoyance.

Retention of skilled workforce is a good idea - up to a point. It should not be a primary reason.

Many seem to believe that letting go of skilled workforce will make that knowledge go away forever. Not me. I have faith in american know-how, intelligence, and current/future workforce. They will get it done, if given a chance.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/29/2010 04:22 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

While retention of a skilled workforce and understood and proven hardware should seem like an obviously smart thing to do, you and many who spout your uninformed dogma over and over again is boardering on annoyance.

Retention of skilled workforce is a good idea - up to a point. It should not be a primary reason.

Many seem to believe that letting go of skilled workforce will make that knowledge go away forever. Not me. I have faith in american know-how, intelligence, and current/future workforce. They will get it done, if given a chance.

Quite frankly, that is a ridiculous statement, even if you try to spin it and intentionally remove most of my statement because you probably know you cannot rebuttle it. 

For folks that carry on again and again about cost and schedule to an extrodinary degree it would seem silly to handicap ourselves from the beginning by having to re-learn what we know now. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Ben the Space Brit on 07/29/2010 04:37 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

There are three payloads that I know of that exist for the upper range:

1) Light lunar cargo lander;

2) Combined lunar spacecraft (with dry EDS);

3) NEO encounter vehicle (split into seperate propulsion and hab/return segments over two launches).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/29/2010 04:38 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

That is not the question I asked, and unfortuntely your comment is false. Since the 150 and 130 figures have been mentioned, the charge that it works against the SSP's currently favored SD HLV Sidemount even via Block evolutions has been noted.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/29/2010 04:38 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

There are three payloads that I know of that exist for the upper range:

1) Light lunar cargo lander;

2) Combined lunar spacecraft (with dry EDS);

3) NEO encounter vehicle (split into seperate propulsion and hab/return segments over two launches).

Thanks Ben, that DOES answer the question I asked :)
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/29/2010 04:40 PM
This is the latest version of the Senate Bill that I have seen (which includes the 130t requirement):
http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=20a7a8bd-50f4-4474-bf1d-f0a6a8824b01

Some of the numbers were later changed during the appropriation process, see here (starts at page 115):
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_reports&docid=f:sr229.111.pdf

Many thanks, that is later than I was able to find.

cheers, Martin

Edit: quote.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/29/2010 04:50 PM

This is the latest version of the Senate Bill that I have seen (which includes the 130t requirement):
http://commerce.senate.gov/public/?a=Files.Serve&File_id=20a7a8bd-50f4-4474-bf1d-f0a6a8824b01

Some of the numbers were later changed during the appropriation process, see here (starts at page 115):
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_reports&docid=f:sr229.111.pdf


Authorization.

(c) MINIMUM CAPABILITY REQUIREMENTS.
 (1) IN GENERAL.—The Space Launch System developed pursuant to subsection (b) shall be designed to have, at a minimum, the following:
 (A) The initial capability of the core elements, without an upper stage, of lifting payloads weighing between 70 tons and 100 tons into low-Earth orbit in preparation for transit for missions beyond low-Earth orbit.
 (B) The capability to carry an integrated upper Earth departure stage bringing the total lift capability of the Space Launch System to 130 tons or more.
 (C) The capability to lift the multipurpose crew vehicle.
 (D) The capability to serve as a backup system for supplying and supporting ISS cargo requirements or crew delivery requirements not otherwise met by available commercial or partner-supplied vehicles.
 (2) FLEXIBILITY.—The Space Launch System shall be designed from inception as a fully-integrated vehicle capable of carrying a total payload of 130 tons or more into low-Earth orbit in preparation for transit for missions beyond low-Earth orbit. The Space Launch System shall, to the extent practicable, incorporate capabilities for evolutionary growth to carry heavier payloads. Developmental work and testing of the core elements and the upper stage should proceed in parallel subject to appropriations. Priority should be placed on the core elements with the goal for operational capability for the core elements not later than December 31, 2016.
 (3) TRANSITION NEEDS.—The Administrator shall ensure critical skills and capabilities are retained, modified, and developed, as appropriate, in areas related to solid and liquid engines, large diameter fuel tanks, rocket propulsion, and other ground test capabilities for an effective transition to the follow-on Space Launch System.
 (4) The capacity for efficient and timely evolution, including the incorporation of new technologies, competition of sub-elements, and commercial operations.




Appropriations.

Heavy Lift Launch Vehicle.—The Committee provides $1,900,000,000 to begin building an integrated heavy lift launch vehicle system. The system shall enable human transportation at the highest possible safety standards and lowest life cycle costs for beyond low Earth orbit and shall be designed, managed, and integrated by the Marshall Space Flight Center. This funding shall be part of a sustained, evolvable effort around a common core to culminate in an initial human capability by 2016. The system shall be evolvable to lift the necessary elements for missions beyond low Earth orbit in order to extend human exploration capabilities. The program shall be managed under a strict cost cap of $11,500,000,000 through fiscal year 2017.

Within 60 days of enactment, NASA shall report to the committee on planned milestones, expected performance of the low Earth orbit and beyond low Earth orbit configurations, planned ground and early flight testing programs and deliverables for the heavy lift launch vehicle program, along with any existing contract vehicles the Agency intends to use for this purpose. As part of this report, NASA shall evaluate the preceding cost cap and validate the cap or provide a viable and validated alternative.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/29/2010 05:01 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

There are three payloads that I know of that exist for the upper range:

1) Light lunar cargo lander;

Not particularly "light".

Note that Ed's site gives only 120mT to Ares V Classic (LV27.3) with HTPB SRB's, and 145 ton to LEO for Ares V with 6x RS68B & 5.5 seg SRB's. http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/ares5.html (http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/ares5.html)

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: marsavian on 07/29/2010 05:03 PM
Technically in the bill it is a US short ton unless the word metric or tonne is specifically used.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ton
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tonne
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: muomega0 on 07/29/2010 05:23 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

Is that your opinion, or do you have clear knowledge of the future?

I think you assume too much about what tomorrow may bring.

You may not like what tomorrow will bring given the current NASA budget and the choice of completing a SDHLV, but this depends on the cost estimates and the available budget.

A better metric is to examine Total LV Cost per Year versus Metric Tons to orbit each year.  Then compare this to the available budget.

It is discussed a bit here:

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=18752.msg622563#msg622563


And Augustine said the same thing: (thanks Neilh for this post)
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=18752.msg622687#msg622687


To summarize:

So taking Ross's numbers off of the charts:
MT      J-246     Atlas V      J-246    Atlas V
           $B          $B           $/kg      $kg
200     2.3       1.8         11500    9000
400     2.9       3.1          7250     7750
600     3.3       4.0          5500     6667
800     3.8       5.0          4750     6250

From this one could conclude:

Adding a propellant depot that can store fuel for a long period of time allows NASA to loft non-fuel hardware in 1 to 2 flights, regardless of launch vehicle.

1.7B nonrecurring costs/yr of a SDLV could be diverted in a second FY to a payload/mission using Atlas as the primary LV.

With ISS at 2.1B per year, there still is not adequate funding for landers, outposts, and Mars, at the PRESENT time, since the vehicles need development $$ first, which is likely why the flexible path option was presented, not because it was a reason to stop HSF.

At such a low flight rate, NASA must develop a new "duel use" workforce strategy, where experienced, dedicated workers place their talents on other programs besides just HLV operations.

It comes down to how much metric tons to orbit NASA can afford each year.  My guess is that it is no where near 400MT. :-\  YMMV

Then there is political "compromise".

from previous post reference:
 Vehicle.—The Committee provides
$1,900,000,000 to begin building an integrated heavy lift launch vehicle system. The system shall enable human transportation at the highest possible safety standards and lowest life cycle costs for beyond low Earth orbit and shall be designed, managed, and integrated by the Marshall Space Flight Center.

Congress is mandating to NASA managers and engineers to carry a 1.7B/year (?) non-recurring cost for the SDLV, which would only be necessary if NASA launches over 400MT of payload per year, but Congress has not and likely will not provide budget for this 400MT per year.

Given that cost vs MT comparison above does not include the 10B+ development costs of the HLV, you can see how most would reach a conclusion different from Congress.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: MP99 on 07/29/2010 05:49 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

The Mars DRA 5.0 architcture requires five launches for a crewed mission, none of is listed as more than 110mT, despite being launched on Ares V's.

Each crewed mission requires two additional cargo missions (one surface hab, one lander), which require a total of seven launches, none of more than 103.6mT.

Most of these are fuelled-up propulsion stages, which are basically a third "in space only" stage on top of the existing Ares V's two stages. However, none of these numbers account for boiloff or LEO station keeping, so there is probably additional mass not accounted for above (ie the figures probably shouldn't be labelled as "launch mass").

NB adding a third stage seem to be the easiest way to really bump up the payload of an SDLV.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: phantomdj on 07/29/2010 06:06 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

While retention of a skilled workforce and understood and proven hardware should seem like an obviously smart thing to do, you and many who spout your uninformed dogma over and over again is boardering on annoyance.

A shuttle derived vehicle in no way will guarantee the workforce transitions in a 1:1 format.  The most significant portion of the STS workfoce, the orbiter - which equates to the highest number of heads from ground operations, engineering and mission operations, will not all transfer to SLS or whatever it ends up being called. 

OV106 is correct but it is worse than he states. The problem is not have actual SDHLV hardware to work on for years to come.

It is too late for a shuttle derived vehicle to guarantee any major workforce transition.  Most will have to be laid-off.  A simple breakdown of the shuttle workforce goes something like this:

1 - Personnel to assemble and test the FWD and AFT skirt assemblies for the SRB’s in the ARF
2 - Personnel to stack the FWD and AFT assemblies with solid rocket motors to make the SRB’s and test in VAB
3 - Personnel to attach ET and shuttle to the stack and test
4 - Personnel to roll out to pad
5 - Personnel to test at the pad
6 - Personnel to launch
7 - Personnel to recover the SRB and disassemble
8 - Personnel for shuttle landing
9 - Personnel to refurbish the shuttle for next launch

There are others but the point is that most of these people will not be needed after the last launch and the gap to SDHLV is too long.

The people working on 8 and 9 will not be needed at all, people doing #1 are already being cut by 50% in October with more to follow.  I don’t think USA and NASA will have the budget to pay these people to sit around like Maytag repairmen waiting the 3 to 4 years it will take to get actual hardware at KSC to assemble, stack and test for the first test flight of a shuttle derived vehicle.

They might be able to hire some back in 2 or 3 years but most will be gone.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: robertross on 07/29/2010 06:14 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

The Mars DRA 5.0 architcture requires five launches for a crewed mission, none of is listed as more than 110mT, despite being launched on Ares V's.

Each crewed mission requires two additional cargo missions (one surface hab, one lander), which require a total of seven launches, none of more than 103.6mT.

Most of these are fuelled-up propulsion stages, which are basically a third "in space only" stage on top of the existing Ares V's two stages. However, none of these numbers account for boiloff or LEO station keeping, so there is probably additional mass not accounted for above (ie the figures probably shouldn't be labelled as "launch mass").

NB adding a third stage seem to be the easiest way to really bump up the payload of an SDLV.

cheers, Martin

Note for Mars DRA 5.0: it was tailored around the Ares V, so drwaing specific references from it must be taken with a grain of salt (imo).

Until we get to the point where we know our actual hardware requirements (based on TRL of: ISRU, PD, advanced propulsion,...) we are only putting estimates on these things. So having a growth option is a grand idea, just as long as it doesn't tie you into an unnecessary architecture (which has been the debate among the various groups for so long now on here). So choose a vehicle that can grow to meet your needs (and move over to the Direct threads to find such a vehicle ;) ).
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Lars_J on 07/29/2010 06:40 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

That is not the question I asked, and unfortuntely your comment is false. Since the 150 and 130 figures have been mentioned, the charge that it works against the SSP's currently favored SD HLV Sidemount even via Block evolutions has been noted.

My reply was not meant a theoretical statement of truth, just one of practicality. We won't be able to afford those payloads in the *foreseeable future* (this time I emphasize that). So we can draw out plans for 150 mT, 200mT, or 500mT lifters all we want, with theoretical payloads (O'neill stattions, BSG ships) - but we can't afford them, so what is the point?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: nooneofconsequence on 07/29/2010 06:48 PM
In your opinion, is the quick passage of an unamended House bill a good thing or a bad thing?
It is a bad thing. Amendments move things along faster, reduce conference issues. Makes things more predictable.

My worry is that the House fights for more irrational/waste introduced into the Senate, and it kills the compromise in an unpredicted way.

And then everything wanders off into the tuiles for awhile - like earlier this year.

Must be very frustrating.
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/29/2010 06:58 PM
What sort of payloads would we be talking about in those higher ranges? MTV propulsion stages? Someone's going with those numbers for a reason, I'd assume.

To guarantee that a Shuttle-derived solution, and the jobs that go with it. Of course there is no actual need for such lift capacity in the foreseeable future.

That is not the question I asked, and unfortuntely your comment is false. Since the 150 and 130 figures have been mentioned, the charge that it works against the SSP's currently favored SD HLV Sidemount even via Block evolutions has been noted.

My reply was not meant a theoretical statement of truth, just one of practicality. We won't be able to afford those payloads in the *foreseeable future* (this time I emphasize that). So we can draw out plans for 150 mT, 200mT, or 500mT lifters all we want, with theoretical payloads (O'neill stattions, BSG ships) - but we can't afford them, so what is the point?

Part of your problem is that you and others are in a "group-think" mode of conjecture and substituting that as some sort of fact.  This "group-think" mentality has collectively branded a group and a particular vehicle as the enemy and one that needs to be blamed for why you and others are not flying around on a spaceship.  What you say above is equally not even grounded in reality.

There are some words in various pieces of legislation that state it should be *evolvable*, which is very, very key, up to 150 tons and even that upper limit is reported to be reduced. 
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: simonbp on 07/29/2010 07:12 PM
Part of your problem is that you and others are in a "group-think" mode of conjecture and substituting that as some sort of fact.  This "group-think" mentality has collectively branded a group and a particular vehicle as the enemy and one that needs to be blamed for why you and others are not flying around on a spaceship.  What you say above is equally not even grounded in reality.

Spot on.

As someone who has followed the Direct story form the beginning (Ross first suggested it in a thread that I started about a RS-68 Ares I), I have to say that the language of the Senate Bill perfectly corresponds to the original motivation for Direct. It calls for quick development of a very-shuttle-derived HLV using the maximum amount of Shuttle infrastructure and resources. Everything else about Direct (ACES upper stage, EOR-LOR, etc) is tangential and relatively unimportant.

In my mind, the original Direct concept died a year ago when Not-Shuttle-C was presented to Augustine Commission. What had been rantings on web forum before became potential government policy afterwards. If passed, the Senate language would make the motivation behind Direct into official NASA policy. That's a victory Direct supporters should cherish, and leave everything else to professional trade studies...
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Lars_J on 07/29/2010 07:17 PM
My reply was not meant a theoretical statement of truth, just one of practicality. We won't be able to afford those payloads in the *foreseeable future* (this time I emphasize that). So we can draw out plans for 150 mT, 200mT, or 500mT lifters all we want, with theoretical payloads (O'neill stattions, BSG ships) - but we can't afford them, so what is the point?

Part of your problem is that you and others are in a "group-think" mode of conjecture and substituting that as some sort of fact.  This "group-think" mentality has collectively branded a group and a particular vehicle as the enemy and one that needs to be blamed for why you and others are not flying around on a spaceship.  What you say above is equally not even grounded in reality.

Oh Mike, please stop trying to analyze my "groupthink" and assign whatever motives you think I have.

But if you insist, I have a similar suggestion for you: Please try to see the issues outside of of your USA and Shuttle worker perspective, and as a generic tax payer and space advocate. What is the best path forward for future manned space exploration/expansion? Is it really holding on to the Shuttle infrastructure?

If you think so, then more power to you. But many others (myself included) do not share that opinion. And that is OK.

As for your statement "What you say above is equally not even grounded in reality": Oh really - What part?
 - That we can't afford 150 mT payloads in the foreseeable future?
 - That we can't build 150 mT, 200mT, or 500mT lifters, *and* afford their payloads?
Title: Re: Senate Commerce Committee Executive and Congress Version - July 15 onwards
Post by: Namechange User on 07/29/2010 07:23 PM
My reply was not meant a theoretical statement of truth, just one of practicality. We won't be able to afford those payloads in the *foreseeable future* (this time I emphasize that). So we can draw out plans for 150 mT, 200mT, or 500mT lifters all we want, with theoretical payloads (O'neill stattions, BSG ships) - but we can't afford them, so what is the point?

Pa