NASASpaceFlight.com Forum

General Discussion => Space Policy Discussion => Topic started by: Peter NASA on 07/12/2011 02:46 AM

Title: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Peter NASA on 07/12/2011 02:46 AM
http://science.house.gov/hearing/full-committee-hearing-review-nasa%E2%80%99s-space-launch-system

Get ready for fireworks. The committee has ammunition.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: rdale on 07/12/2011 02:52 AM
Starts at 10am EDT / 14 UTC.

===

The original intent of the hearing was to examine NASA’s selection of a heavy-lift launch system (“Space Launch System”) that will be used to launch future crew and cargo flights beyond low Earth orbit. Members would have had an opportunity to ask questions regarding cost, schedule, capabilities, and justification for the selected design. However, on July 7, a senior NASA official publicly stated that a final decision on SLS won’t be announced until “late this summer.” In light of NASA’s continuing delays (the NASA Authorization Act of 2010 required a decision and report by mid-January 2011), the hearing will instead provide an opportunity for NASA to explain why it has failed to reach a decision, what analyses still need to be completed, and when the Space Launch System decisions will be forthcoming.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:54 AM
This could be big.

Would be in the middle of an EVA, but I just hope they ask the right questions and insist on the answers.

As Dr. Gaius Baltar would say: "I need a ray of hope about the future".

PS Loving Peter's work with the thread title :D
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 02:57 AM
Oh boy here we go. Told you someone is going to get sacked for this.


Too bad it appears they are hanging this on Charlie, when IMO Garver deserves it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 03:00 AM
Aight well I will be sure to be on for these fireworks, wouldn't want to miss this. I hope that they manage to at least provide some sort of impetus to NASA to get this decision announced sooner, my understanding is that the design has basically been validated and chosen already by the winning RAC team. Then, Garver and or the WH stepped in and insisted on an independent cost estimate (despite the RAC teams having already gotten such estimates not to mention the DIRECT team estimates and the Aerospace corp. estimates of both DIRECT and NLS) mainly for the purpose of mucking it up and making it take longer.


Pure politics as the bickering between the executive and legislative branch continues on virtually every issue. It is fascinating to watch the branches fight each other, however, because this is not possible in many countries and its what makes this country great, albeit frustrating as all get out sometimes.


Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:06 AM
No one's going to get hung, I think (this is where I've got to remember I don't know much about politics) but I hope there's a good number of lawmakers there. If there's one or two, then - well I don't know what a lawmaker's day involves, but you know what I mean.

As far as FF's comment on the RACs...yep, but this wasn't like pre FY2011, this went much further, and the General MADE the selection. We even had the commander of STS-135 on the SLF saying so and even naming July 8 as part of his pre-written speech, wasn't even a question from the media. It was decided. They need to ask why July 8 never happened, who was responsible for that.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 03:08 AM
To make sure this hearing charter document is available to all readers, it is attached.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 03:11 AM
Here's a lovely snippet:
Quote
NASA has contracted with Booz Allen Hamilton to perform an independent cost assessment. The results were due in May 2011 for inclusion as part of the final report. In May 2011 senior NASA officials expressed confidence that the final report would be completed by June 20th, this was later changed to July 8th. NASA’s report to Congress is now more than six months late. NASA is awaiting final approval from OMB.

Seems to confirm that OMB is (or is being used as) a roadblock.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:16 AM
Thanks SDSDS. That's not pulling any punches, and....

"In May 2011 senior NASA officials expressed confidence that the final report would be completed by June 20th, this was later changed to July 8th."

Sorry I'm making a big deal out of that date, but I had some people (including a couple of those lovely lobbyists) saying I was pulling a date out of my backside per the previous article and was being fluffy as it was STS-135's launch date (note, it was before Commander Ferguson said the same date, along with other media too).

Stick that in your pipe and smoke it (not that anything happened anyway).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 03:32 AM
Maybe the Committee can explain their cuts to the exploration budget.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 03:56 AM
I just looked at the members of the Committee and they have all "NASA" states with alot of workers in them.   I smell trouble ahead.
 
http://science.house.gov/about/membership (http://science.house.gov/about/membership)
 
 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 04:04 AM
I believe this will amount to nothing more than yet another episode of political theatre.  Nothing of substance will be said by either side, maybe a sound bite from some here and there but nothing with any real substance or consequences. 

I say this because I cannot possibly see why now would be any different than the past.  NASA has and likely will continue to slow-roll just as effectively as it has for 18+ months where it cannot define what it wants to do with an SLS-class vehicle just as it cannot define what it would do without one. 

The key questions that need to be asked will go unaddressed and the key word in NASA's "plan" will continue to be the word "eventually", which is incredibly difficult to plan a budget against.  Meanwhile, me and many others have paid for this with our careers and for this I have totally lost faith in the agency I dedicated my professional life to thus far and all my effort as a youth to get to as well as the government that directs it. 

I am tired of "hearings".  I am tired of hearing that things are "going on behind the scenes".  I am tired of hearing that "there is an intent to use this workforce".  I am tired of hearing "just on more study".  I am tired of hearing "tens of thousands of jobs will be created".  I am tired of hearing we have "missions with a capital M" when not the slightest details of any such thing are ever given.  I am tired of hearing about how bright the future is going to be when one cannot define that future beyond the hope that we replace our current capability with something less 5 or so years from now.   

Me and many others stayed to "finish strong" to be the "key" that would enable everything else, as we were told so many times.  Me and many others did our part, and now that we are here at the finish line, we find we're the only ones here and only "hope and assumption" that the others that were to meet us will eventually come, long after we got tired of waiting and went home.  No more and never again.  To hell with it all. 

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mjcrsmith on 07/12/2011 04:11 AM
I believe this will amount to nothing more than yet another episode of political theatre.  Nothing of substance will be said by either side, maybe a sound bite from some here and there but nothing with any real substance or consequences. 


Excellent comment. Totally agree.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 04:20 AM
I believe this will amount to nothing more than yet another episode of political theatre.

Agreed, and the episodes in this season are inevitably coming to an end.

Quote
Me and many others stayed to "finish strong" to be the "key" that would enable everything else, as we were told so many times.

STS-135 "wheels stop" is the last chance for somebody in the administration to stand up and give details on what's next for NASA HSF.  They need to articulate a cohesive plan on that date, including both a launch vehicle design (or sequence of designs) and a mission (or sequence of missions).  If they fail to do that, it will be because they have willfully and maliciously chosen to violate the law.  That's what federal grand juries are for.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: notsorandom on 07/12/2011 04:37 AM
I just looked at the members of the Committee and they have all "NASA" states with alot of workers in them.   I smell trouble ahead.
 
http://science.house.gov/about/membership (http://science.house.gov/about/membership)
 
Not really all of them. Actually less then I thought. Huh I should run for office and fill that listed vacancy lol.
http://www.nasa.gov/about/sites/index.html
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mikegro on 07/12/2011 04:50 AM

Me and many others stayed to "finish strong" to be the "key" that would enable everything else, as we were told so many times.  Me and many others did our part, and now that we are here at the finish line, we find we're the only ones here and only "hope and assumption" that the others that were to meet us will eventually come, long after we got tired of waiting and went home.  No more and never again.  To hell with it all. 



It's truly sad to see it come to this.  While we have the world's attention with STS-135 we can't announce something with a bit more detail than "Oh, we're doing yet another cost analysis.  We should have it by the end of the summer."  Can't they show us (and Congress of course!) what they're having analyzed?  Doesn't it have a really strong chance of moving forward or are they really considering going back to the drawing board AGAIN?

When I initially heard rumors of the July 8th date as the announcement for the SLS design I thought that was brilliant!  Coinciding with the launch of the final Shuttle mission would inform the most people possible of what's next for NASA and answer the question that is on the minds of everyone: "What will NASA be doing once the Shuttle is gone?"  I think this was a huge missed opportunity.  However, as sdsds said, the next opportunity to use the attention getting power of the last shuttle mission in history is right after wheels stop on July 21st.

Most of us "in-the-know" (I <3 NSF!) realize that if/when SLS materializes it will most likely look a lot like the Jupiter rockets of DIRECT.  I have to explain/show what this will look like to people all of the time.  The guide on the "Discover KSC" tour was telling people what it would look like (using one of those nice stuffed Space Shuttle stacks from the gift shop as a reference) as well.  Can't NASA just tell the world what we pretty much already know, and stop with the smoke and mirrors?  Oh, and GET ON WITH IT!

-Mike
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mikegi on 07/12/2011 04:53 AM
I adjusted my tinfoil hat and came up with a couple of WAGs:

1) NASA's getting the outside cost estimates because they're going to report to Congress that they need an extra $3B/year to do SLS. They'll say, "here are our estimates and here's the independent verification".

2) NASA's delaying the SLS report because the Administration needs more time to get Congressional opposition to SLS fired up. Without a defined mission, SLS will be derided as an "expensive monster rocket to nowhere".
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: hydra9 on 07/12/2011 05:17 AM
Since the Obama mission to an asteroid is set at 2025, the Obama administration doesn't want an  HLV   by 2016  because then NASA would have to use it!

Congress, however, has requested that NASA define near term missions for the SLS within cis-lunar space. But they've still not heard a word from Bolden on this matter probably because the administration doesn't want any cis-lunar space missions. 

I predict that  Obama's silly manned mission to an asteroid will be canceled by the next administration (either 2013 or 2017) in favor of focusing the SLS architecture on accessing and processing  lunar water resources.

Plus, with the same money used to explore just one asteroid during a manned mission, dozens of asteroids could be explored with unmanned missions.   

Marcel F. Williams
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: simonbp on 07/12/2011 06:30 AM
Anyone willing to bet a pint that Falcon Heavy gets a payload to orbit before the SLS Dynamic Test Article is even built?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: notsorandom on 07/12/2011 08:03 AM
Anyone willing to bet a pint that Falcon Heavy gets a payload to orbit before the SLS Dynamic Test Article is even built?
Depends on a lot of unknowns at this point but what the hey. Sure! :D
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: psloss on 07/12/2011 11:06 AM
This is on the NASA TV schedule -- on the Education Channel (only) at 10 am Eastern.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 11:23 AM
This is on the NASA TV schedule -- on the Education Channel (only) at 10 am Eastern.


Excellent! That makes capturing screenshots easier.

Please be a strong hearing, please be a strong hearing....(and I mean from both sides. We need answers, not fluff).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: padrat on 07/12/2011 11:36 AM
Don't think I need to reiterate anything that OV-106 already has.

Amen
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: psloss on 07/12/2011 11:55 AM
This is on the NASA TV schedule -- on the Education Channel (only) at 10 am Eastern.


Excellent! That makes capturing screenshots easier.

Please be a strong hearing, please be a strong hearing....(and I mean from both sides. We need answers, not fluff).
Unfortunately, I think OV is right; answers or not, the hearing is not going to change the direction, speed, or lack thereof.

I don't think that's the function of these hearings, anyway.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 11:57 AM
It might make for some forced smiling and doubletalk, but it will be more Kabuki theatre just like before. It’s all for their constituents in the next election cycle. It is not about the future of spaceflight moe about the future of politics.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: EE Scott on 07/12/2011 01:51 PM
This is on the NASA TV schedule -- on the Education Channel (only) at 10 am Eastern.


Excellent! That makes capturing screenshots easier.

Please be a strong hearing, please be a strong hearing....(and I mean from both sides. We need answers, not fluff).
Unfortunately, I think OV is right; answers or not, the hearing is not going to change the direction, speed, or lack thereof.

I don't think that's the function of these hearings, anyway.


It very well could turn out that way, we shall soon see.

However I would think that the Committee members will be emboldened this time to be very insistent and to show much frustration, more than in recent Hearings.  They may not have much patience with the stock answers that NASA brings to the table.  So after very tough questions get asked, I expect NASA to bring out their usual talking points wrt SLS planning, but then what?  Will the Committee simply thank them for their time, or will they keep digging?  This could be interesting.  Or not.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 01:53 PM
This is on the NASA TV schedule -- on the Education Channel (only) at 10 am Eastern.


Excellent! That makes capturing screenshots easier.

Please be a strong hearing, please be a strong hearing....(and I mean from both sides. We need answers, not fluff).
Unfortunately, I think OV is right; answers or not, the hearing is not going to change the direction, speed, or lack thereof.

I don't think that's the function of these hearings, anyway.


I agree with Philipp. Furthermore, Bolden is also good at deflecting questions he doesn't want to answer. He starts talking about something else.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 01:54 PM
I got a lock into the feed from the committee room, but no feed as yet.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 01:55 PM
Education channel still has the EVA on at the moment.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:00 PM
Here we go...

Everyone feel free to add notes, given that'll provide an objective picture given it's going to be impossible to transcribe word for word and people may have different slants on what's been said, so allowing for open note postings will be the fairest and more objective way of doing this.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 02:01 PM
I have a video slide with alot of open mikes....
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:02 PM
I have a video slide with alot of open mikes....


Heh, see if you can overhear anything sensational ;)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Paul Howard on 07/12/2011 02:03 PM
Here we go...

Everyone feel free to add notes, given that'll provide an objective picture given it's going to be impossible to transcribe word for word and people may have different slants on what's been said, so allowing for open note postings will be the fairest and more objective way of doing this.

Good idea Chris. Those tweeting and blogging updates on other sites tend to only post what THEY want.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:05 PM
Yeah, but @Jeff_foust is very good. Hobbyspace isn't exactly a SLS fanclub, but Clarke is very good, so well worth watching.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:05 PM
Mr Hall:
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 02:12 PM
I hope Bolden replies by criticizing the House for its draft CJS appropriation bill.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:12 PM
Mr Hall: Congrats on STS-135, says 10s of thousands watched (it was a million), but it was being positive.

Expected SLS to be announced well before today. Sadly not the case. Notes nine months ago NASA was clearly told to have this done by January.

Notes the Dec 2016 date, keeps referencing CxP, notes the date is about backup to commercial vehicles.

Quoting NASA's own comments about being able to report in Spring. Been left only with explanations of decision making decisions.

Notes they didn't get the reports they asked for, says it's almost an insult to Congress (yikes). Reflects poorly, let down the thousands of men and women, well as heros like (the Apollo astros).

We've waited for answers which have not come, we've pleaded for answers which have not come. It's a shame as we're trying to protect our leadership in space.

We've lost our patience. The white house has done you wrong. We reserve the right to open an investigation, which is a shame we have to consider that.

Whoa, that was a strong start.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 02:12 PM
"this is an insult to congress"
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:18 PM
Ms Johnson - same with the congrats of the STS-135 launch.

Less forceful, but not happy about the lack of a plan. Notes the fault isn't Bolden's.

It's past the time for a decision to be announced.

Notes three authorization acts.

In short Congress is not asking NASA to build a rocket without a mission as some have claimed.

Notes the workforce. They don't know what if anything they have to work on. Impressive people, including students, with so much hope and inspiration in their eyes. But they don't know if there will be a HSF program when the leave school.

Heard from international leaders wondering why NASA is adift.

I believe we can do better, and I believe you think we can do better.

It is time to move forward.

We need to build the SLS and Orion, and make use of the HSF skills which NASA has worked so hard to achieve and inspire the next generation.

If we lose this talent, it'll be to another country.

Notes the cuts to the budget. Trying to do more with less. Puts America on a path to reliquish space leadership.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 02:18 PM
The Democrtaic Representative from Ohio, Ms Johnson, is criticizing the CJS appropriation bill. Ralph Hall, a Republican representative, agrees with her.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:19 PM
Mr Hall again. Notes Al Gore budget cuts by 25 percent. Spoke to NASA, who cut it 34 percent and NASA has not been the same since.

(That all went over my head).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:21 PM
Someone's not arrived yet, but on the way.

General Bolden getting introduced.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:21 PM
Ooo, the General has his game face on!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:23 PM
You have the right person here (to complain to, not the president). I am the leader of NASA.

He started crying when referencing Atlantis' launch. Game face removed.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Scia on 07/12/2011 02:23 PM
There's Bolden tearing up again.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: dbhyslop on 07/12/2011 02:24 PM
Clearly he attended the John Boehner school of public discourse.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 02:25 PM
You have the right person here (to complain to, not the president). I am the leader of NASA.

I like the fact that he said that. He is saying essentially that the buck stops with him. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Mike_1179 on 07/12/2011 02:27 PM
He specifically noted 70 METRIC tons and 130 METRIC tons.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mjcrsmith on 07/12/2011 02:28 PM
"metric tons"

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:29 PM
"Win The Future" (WTF) reference again.

As you know, the SLS and Orion will transport to.... Asteriod by 2025...eventually on to Mars. I share the urgency.

But we cannot rush into it. Cites CxP lessons learned.

In late May, I accepted the Orion reference design, as the MPCV.

Working on completing SLS options. Of course we were constrained by the authorization law. We're developing new ways of doing business and revising the management of our contracts.

Put together a series of teams and industry and considering an early test flight program.

It must be 70mt to 100mt to LEO and to evolve to 130mt.

On June 20 I seleted a specific design!! But we need cost elements, and a PDR on our best approach. It would be irresponsible until we get cost estimates, working with OMB.

This will be the most decision I make as NASA Admin, and I want to get it right.

While I hope we have a final decision in this summer, it may take longer (yikes).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 02:30 PM
Bolden: the sls announcemet could take longer than summer.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:31 PM
Notes the things we know, like Orion GTA, 39B clean pad.

Schedule: Test Late 2017, Human flights early 2020s (yikes).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 02:31 PM
Schedule: Test Late 2017, Human flights early 2020s (yikes).

At the same time mentioning urgency?!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: psloss on 07/12/2011 02:32 PM
Can somebody post the link to Gen. Bolden's statement when it becomes available?  Thanx.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:33 PM
Mr Hall notes there will be time for Q&As as we're at the crossroads for the ISS.

Going after Garver for something she said to the Wash Post.

"We have a program, we have a budget, we're just putting fine points on the design (SLS)".

Doesn't match with Bolden's comments. Wants to know why.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:35 PM
General Bolden says the statements do match. Notes J-2X will be in the system, and on the test stand at Stennis.

The President has laid the gauntlet for me. We don't know what asteriod yet, too far out.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:36 PM
Mr Hall: But our confidence is shaken. Cites Authorization Act 2010.

Is Orion being designed as a back up for ISS?

Bolden: No, it's for BEO. It's capable, but it's being designed for BEO return re-entry. If I design it for BEO, it would be insuffient, but it'd work. If I design it for LEO it won't work for BEO.

Only reasons would be such as commercial having an accident.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:39 PM
Ms Johnson is still a bit confused.

Wants to know about workforce.

General Bolden. The sooner we make the decision the sooner we stablize the workforce. We're in a seven year plan to end Shuttle, made by another president. When we hear wheels stop, I'll be a happy camper and will have done my job (not the best way of wording it).

I'm trying to get people in Florida to recruit. I need help! It's not my job, I need the States to do their part.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:40 PM
Ms Johnson on Russia.

General Bolden: Americans will be in space until at least 2020. We're not abandoning HSF. We have ISS for the next nine years at least. I just approved astro assignments. They tell me we need more astros.

The kids won't make shuttle, but they may walk on Mars. I hope I'm not the only optimist in the room.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:43 PM
Heh, X-33 gets a mention from the Californian rep :)

The amount of times we see decisions made by the executive branch.....right now we're trying to carry our country forward. Russians using Soyuz since 1966, still viable. We have EELVs, these systems are still very capable of conducting missions?

Bolden: Last two Soyuz are new avionics - reason for the 133 flyabout not happening.

We do evolutionary stuff, they do revolutionary stuff (or was it the other way around - someone correct me if needed).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/12/2011 02:44 PM
Other way around, Chris. ;)

Bolden's now getting loaded questions about evolving Shuttle rather than making something new and revolutionary.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/12/2011 02:45 PM
General Bolden: Americans will be in space until at least 2020. We're not abandoning HSF. We have ISS for the next nine years at least.

Very important statement here. He more or less confirmed what I suspected: US Astronauts now only exist to go to ISS. ISS is to be splashed in 2020, maybe later. And, after ISS, USA abandoning human spaceflight is a serious option (by saying "will be in space until", he implicitly states "won't be in space anymore after"). So, Asteroid and Mars are just vague promises that will probably never happen (at least not by US gov't employees)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 02:46 PM
Other way around, Chris. ;)

Bolden's now getting loaded questions about evolving Shuttle rather than making something new and revolutionary.

I would argue that what is being discussed is evolving Atlas & Delta vs revolutionary trying to grow shuttle
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:47 PM
We've been rushed into this one big rocket. Can't we spend it on other goals?

Bolden: I don't think so. You can't put a dollar sign on things like Hubble.

Q) But if we spend all our money on the big rocket, we won't get the other things (JWST I believe he means) and cleaning space debris.

Bolden: If we don't build SLS we don't have a human exploration mission.

Q) But we're cutting out the things we can do today.

Bolden: I listened to Webb and JFK earlier. They argued over science vs Mars vs Moon. Guess who won, we went to the moon.

This rep doesn't like SLS, I guess lol.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 02:47 PM


Very important statement here. He more or less confirmed what I suspected: US Astronauts now only exist to go to ISS. ISS is to be splashed in 2020, maybe later. And, after ISS, USA abandoning human spaceflight is a serious option (by saying "will be in space until", he implicitly states "won't be in space anymore after"). So, Asteroid and Mars are just vague promises that will probably never happen (at least not by US gov't employees)

Bingo.  That was my exact thought when I heard that comment.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:48 PM
Doing a big deservice by spending money on things 20 years away, when we could be doing things now - The rep added.

Mr Wu up next.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:50 PM
Mr Wu:

Wants the dominant lanuage of space to be English, not Russian or Chinese, like in aviation.

I don't expect you to be anything other than a loyal soldier. I want a number, a high end number, to fully fund a deep space exploration program.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:51 PM
Bolden doesn't have a number.

Three areas: Technical. Policy. Budget. Wants Mr Wu to talk to the President about it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:51 PM
There's a lot of reps there!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/12/2011 02:52 PM
Some chuckling about age.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:54 PM
Mr Bartlett knew the NASA monkeys.

Wants an argument about what the spinoffs are compared to the earlier years. Notes the Chinese are graduating seven times more engineers than the US. Notes debt.

(Sounds there's some political stuff going on now)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 02:56 PM
Whoa, he's getting angry all of a sudden, interuppting Mr Bolden, noting no one cares/public interest. A very bad job of messaging.

Bolden. We've done a good job of making it look easy.

Notes spinoffs at JPL. The list goes on and on. Working on talking to young kids about the fun of STEM education.

Can't take the blame as a nation failing. They all want to be businessmen and be millionaires.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: TrueBlueWitt on 07/12/2011 02:59 PM
NASA has become little more than a HUGE expensive ship that has no coal to stoke its boiler... Inaccurate and poorly drawn maps which have no real destinations defined.. and a captain that seems just as happy to leave it in "free drift".. spinning happlessy in the Eddy currents  created by  WH and Congressional posturing..  if this is the best NASA can offer.. HSF is doomed in the US.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:01 PM
Ms Fudge (great name)

Wants to know about Glenn.

Bolden: MPCV will still be involved there. Glenn will stay strng.

Q) You said in a letter that schedule and costs will drive, not safety.

Bolden: If that's what I said, I misspoke.

Q) This does rep a shift from CxP where it was safety driving.

Bolden: Still safety. The less money I have means de-scoping. I don't want to end up where we were with CxP. I don't want an unexecutable program. We're not there yet.

To give me a sanity check, I told my team I wanted indi ballpark figures. PDR is where the hard numbers come, on any system. If I give you hard numbers before PDR, throw me out. I'm just not there yet. We have Boooz Allen looking at SLS to make sure we didn't miss something. I don't think we have though.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Dappa on 07/12/2011 03:01 PM
NASA has become little more than a HUGE expensive ship that has no coal to stoke its boiler... Inaccurate and poorly drawn maps which have no real destinations defined.. and a captain that seems just as happy to leave it in "free drift".. spinning happlessy in the Eddy currents  created by  WH and Congressional posturing..  if this is the best NASA can offer.. HSF is doomed in the US.
Is that your opinion or something that's said in the hearing?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:04 PM
Bolden: This is fun. No one is shooting at me and I don't have a 100lb pack on my back.

Another rep on destinations - such as the moon, where is that in the pecking order.

Bolden: Under the flexable approach plan set by the president, we have hard targets, but there may be reasons to go back to the moon. The moon is a couple of days away. When you head off to Mars, I can't turn them around and bring them back, no Apollo 13 situation.

GEO Sat Repair - if you can get to GEO, you can get to deep space. You could do that with a 70mt vehicle, even some vehicles around today, but they aren't human rated.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: TrueBlueWitt on 07/12/2011 03:05 PM
NASA has become little more than a HUGE expensive ship that has no coal to stoke its boiler... Inaccurate and poorly drawn maps which have no real destinations defined.. and a captain that seems just as happy to leave it in "free drift".. spinning happlessy in the Eddy currents  created by  WH and Congressional posturing..  if this is the best NASA can offer.. HSF is doomed in the US.
Is that your opinion or something that's said in the hearing?

Sorry should have made that clear.. my opinion to what's been going on for the last few year and brought into sharp focus here.  Chris can strike it if he wants.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 03:06 PM
Bolden is doing well. I wish the Administration would let him talk more often. I think that he has learned from his previous mistakes.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jagmaster on 07/12/2011 03:09 PM
Bolden answering a question on unmanned vs manned spaceflight

"I wouldn't say I'm biased... I would say I'm informed".

Giving a really good answer, actually.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:10 PM
And another one...

Confused about what went to OMB and what went to BA consulting.

Bolden: OMB got the design I seleted. BA got the technical proposal of what I selected.

Q) ETA on numbers?

Bolden: It's not like that. Everytime I make a tech decision, I usually have someone tell the staffers.

Q) So no ETA on the OMB numbers?

Bolden: I'm not comfortable making that estimate right now.

Q) Some say SLS is a rocket to nowhere.

Bolden: We're hopeful of the 2017 timeframe to boost an early version of Orion to speeds faster than it would be if it came back from the ISS. Like what SpaceX did, but I need mine to go to a velocity for a BEO return/entry.

Q) That won't spark the imagination.

Bolden: Oh it would. If a kid is excited in hypersonic entry (heh!)

Q) On HSF exploration bias.

Bolden: I'm not biased, I'm informed. Robots can be trained to do things, but it can't look around and say "wow, that's an interesting rock" and decide to bring it back, an intelect.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:13 PM
Another rep. STS-135 showed the American people are inspired, but are left with questions on the future...

You said we need to test before we launch in FY12.

Bolden: Engine testing, including on a HLV system. I've asked for money for a LOX/RP system (oh hello - evolved SLS hint?). We don't have that capability anymore. Russians do it very well.

(Generic question about why you test before launch. Fingers are falling off, so I'll leave that.)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 03:14 PM
Q) That won't spark the imagination.

Bolden: Oh it would. If a kid is excited in hypersonic entry (heh!)


No, it will not.  Right now the test is the goal.  Not a step to the goal.  I can't believe Bolden cannot recognize that and nobody else can either.  Lame.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:16 PM
Same rep on funding moving around.

Bolden: Unlike CxP, where we had sep programs. SLS the ground systems are rolled into the program.

Rep: We have to ensure support, but it has to be earned. By the way, why a NEO?

Bolden: Tells us about Earth etc. And one of these days one of these rocks is going to hit Earth. I don't want us to be dinosaurs. In the National Space Policy is how we protect the planet against NEOs.

You've heard of the near misses with the ISS. There are threats to anything we put in orbit, as there's a lot of stuff out there.


Bolden is on fire right now, doing very well.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 03:19 PM
Bolden: Engine testing, including on a HLV system. I've asked for money for a LOX/RP system (oh hello - evolved SLS hint?). We don't have that capability anymore. Russians do it very well.

I wonder if that means that the boosters on the SLS will be liquid.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:23 PM
Another rep on kids looking up in the sky...(Does she know there's an EVA I want to get back to! ;))

....and gets to a point, on JWST. Can't have it every way (on things NASA does). Which OMB engineers, scientists are holding up the decisions?

Bolden: I wouldn't say they are holding it up. They do have engineers, they have smart people at OMB.

Q) Need some stability. Notes the delays to the announcements.

Bolden: MPCV decision was fast. While people aren't happy about SLS decision timeline, we're really close, we're making good progress.

Notes budget. We're not going to be at $20b as per the president. I had to put my teams under a lot of pressure. Trying to find a way to live within our means. I've got to go back again to the drawing board when things keep changing.

(Ran out of time or avoided JWST)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:29 PM
Another rep likes how he said the buck stays with him earlier.

I'm looking for return for investment. Is DOD interested in SLS?

Bolden: They don't have definative plans, but are most impressed with SLS' importance to the nations industrial base. That is important to DOD and defence. Sub tier contractors are what we're all concerned about. Primes are going to be ok.

Q) Main threat to defence:

Bolden: Our economy. Although we represent 0.5 percent of the budget. We have to take our share of the cuts, but we have to do it smartly.

Rep notes he was military, USMC, will follow the General anywhere (I like this rep).

Bolden adds that a firm consistant budget is essential.

.....I could be with my grandkids, but I love what I do. Getting emotional, when referencing his grandkids.

Notes he doesn't have time to speak about other elemtns of NASA, as everyone's focused on SLS.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:31 PM
Blimey, nice hat ;D

Notes space travel is very relevant in the school districts in Florida. Lots of field trips to Cape Kennedy. Wants to know about international co-op.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:35 PM
Bolden notes we're all working together on education. This is not an American calamity on lack of STEM. It's a world wide issue.

On the extra engineers in China, well they have much more people than us.

Q) Talk to me about Russia.

Bolden: The new Russia is an important partner, especially on ISS. When we lost Columbia, we didn't want to de-man it, they gave us transportation on Soyuz. They are still a very good partner.

We also have the Europeans and the Canadians. They are great at Robotics. RRM will be via Dextre, a Canadian robot.

Pimping: http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2011/07/sts-135-enabling-new-era-robotic-satellite-refuelling-space/

Q) We hear about Russian aggression....

Bolden: We can play a diplomatic role. End of the cold war came about because - in part - to Soyuz/Apollo (ASTP).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:41 PM
Rep on NASA budget, 1.6 billion cut, JSWT zeroed out. Impact on NASA via CJS becoming law.

Bolden: I tried to make a point of not dealing in conjecture. All my planning is based on the Authorization Act to 2012 Proposal.

If CJS, the gap between end of shuttle and commercial would increase. If I had to sacrfice science, like the JWST.....when we started Hubble, there was no such thing as Dark Matter, Exo Planets.... these things would go missing.

Q) On $1.8b for SLS. How much is MSFC playing in the SLS (heh!)

Bolden: Marshall is critical. They will lead the dev. Integration of SLS with Orion.

Q) How much does Marshall need?

Bolden: Robert Lightfoot would tell me he'd like more (no number).

Q) More what?

Bolden: I'll get back to you on a breakdown on what will be spread where.

Q) Are you in a position to tell me how much of the 1.8 goes to Marshall.

Bolden: Not yet. But they will manage all of the money out of the SLS program office.

Q) I heard as little as $65m for Marshall.

Bolden: I doubt it, I'll get back to you.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 03:44 PM
WTF no human flights on SLS till 2020???!?!? Thats pure Obama politics. Watch that date change as soon as we have a new POTUS.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:46 PM
Rep on it being a dicey time. Sounds like a science fan.

As you know, I come from Silicon Valley....how can we design with a capacity to include innovation which is not yet ready for implementation. Notes about a parafin based fuel. Reading off a news site about reducing cost via burn rate/capacity. She likes SpaceX.

How does the gov incorporate the innovations without holding up design?

Bolden: Bobby Braun is making sure we don't miss out on that. Notes R2 now being on the ISS, came from GM and JSC. Always looking at innovation.

Q) But what about parafin?

Bolden: We're not looking an alternate fuels.

Q) But SpaceX are going to use it on their next launch (??)

Bolden: I don't think so, they use LOX/RP (heh).

Q) But look into parafin for me!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: simonbp on 07/12/2011 03:48 PM
when we started Hubble, there was no such thing as Dark Matter

Um, no. Dark matter was discovered in the 1960s (and proposed in the 1930s)...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jagmaster on 07/12/2011 03:49 PM
Excellent question from Rep. Adams just now.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: spacermase on 07/12/2011 03:50 PM
when we started Hubble, there was no such thing as Dark Matter

Um, no. Dark matter was discovered in the 1960s (and proposed in the 1930s)...

I think originally Bolden mentioned Dark Energy- and, if so, that would be an accurate statement.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:52 PM
Another rep on lack of viable plan. Concerned about NASA being ok with astros not riding on American rockets, and the layoffs at a time of over 9 percent unemployment.

Is concerned about her district - central Florida.

When will we see the plan!

Bolden: We're carrying out the Authorization Act each day. Americans will ride into space on US rockets 2015/16. CxP would have been 2018. So we're at least now sooner.

CxP was going to be two vehicles for crew and cargo. More risk. SLS is crew and cargo, one vehicle.

Q) We're still waiting for the SLS information. Clear timeframe. Can we have the OMB info.

Bolden: There are things I can share, and I would gladly do that. But some of it is prop, so it can't be shared, it can't be in the New York Times.

Notes previous standdowns and how the Russians helped. Now we're loooking at redundant systems, where if we lose a vehicle, we have a backup.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 03:56 PM
Interesting, this rep is talking about booster competition :o This person is knowledgeable.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 03:57 PM
Another rep....Alabama on FY12 for SLS and why 2017 not 2016.

Bolden: 2016 is what you told me and at the time I said it was tight. Budget has made it 2017. 2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

Q) What about Marshall?

Bolden: They are eager to get back into building rockets.

Q) SLS components - boosters, competition good or bad?

Bolden: I can share - based on speeding things along - we will use Solid Rocket Boosters until a time where allcomers can compete, including on liquid boosters (LOX/RP for the booster). The FINAL SLS could be a full and open competition if I can do what I want to do. (I guess he was talking about the boosters competition only)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 03:59 PM
Mr. Harris now asking questions about the 2017-2020 date for MPCV/SLS and why Bolden made that statement. Interrupts Bolden's answer, seems to be making the point that MPCV will not be a backup vehicle, essentially pointing out that this is the same situation as CXP.


Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:01 PM
Rep on Orion.

Bolden: Orion will be ready 2017-2020

Q) So Orion will never be a back up for ISS if ISS goes to 2020 only?

Bolden: Probably safe to say that.

Q) Will we have a commercial alternative between 2020 (Ugg).

Bolden: No, 2015.

Q) So four years with the Russians, they pushed the prices up right?

Bolden: No, about the same as previous contract.

Q) So commercial and Russians for ISS crew?

Bolden: I hope we have more than one American vehicle.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: simonbp on 07/12/2011 04:02 PM
Yes, but the real trigger for dark energy was the mapping of the CMB by COBE and WMAP, both of which are NASA spacecraft that were/are orders of magnitude cheaper than Hubble.

And Hubble has actually been of limited utility to the exoplanet community, as they generally need much more time per observation than TACs are willing to allocate. Kepler, in its short time on (heliocentric) orbit, has done more for planetary science than Hubble has 20 years. And again, it was much cheaper than Hubble.

The real debate in the astrophysics community is between these small, focused missions and JWST, the everything for everybody mission. It would be great to have both, but JWST's financial perfidy has meant that lots of small missions are being chopped.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:02 PM
Mr Wu wants to go back to parafin fuel. Tells Bolden to go look into it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: spacermase on 07/12/2011 04:03 PM
Man, this paraffin fuel thing is getting a lot of mileage...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:04 PM
Rep going back to JWST.

Bolden: I've tried to explain why it's important. Made a lot of management changes. 75 percent of the hardware is there. It's in the President's 2012 budget.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Space Pete on 07/12/2011 04:05 PM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:05 PM
Honestly this whole thing is a huge joke IMO. Congress needs to DO SOMETHING to force NASA to follow the law which states: SLS ready for MANNED FLIGHTS by 2016 and MPCV same. Not 2017 or 2020,  2016


This is a freaking CXP repeat but this time the reason is because of the Omb being used a chess piece in a WH game. Pretty clear to me from this hearing so far that, as many suspected, the delays are coming from the WH no where else. Bolden even said he had already made a design choice.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Nate_Trost on 07/12/2011 04:06 PM
Rep on Orion.

Bolden: Orion will be ready 2017-2020

Between that and 2017 for a first SLS test flight, I think all Congress needs to do is disband NASA and hire everybody back for a new agency minus the previous top-level administration and voila, we'd reduce those dates by a couple years.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:07 PM
Rep blaming OMB for JWST.

Bolden: Still developing replan for Webb based on 2012.

Q) But you support funding?

Bolden) (Sorta says yes)

Q) Want OMB flexibility

Bolden: (sorta says yes - clearly being careful, I assume OMB have big sticks?)

Q) On workforce.

A) I saw them all at KSC for the launch, they were upbeat...(yeah right). (Gets cut off).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:07 PM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Its coming from the white house. That's where this is coming from, it doesn't take that long we were on track until July 8th got delayed because of the WH using OMB as a blocking piece.



Its become clear to me this is not going to get solved until Obama is gone.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 04:09 PM
Honestly this whole thing is a huge joke IMO. Congress needs to DO SOMETHING to force NASA to follow the law which states: SLS ready for MANNED FLIGHTS by 2016 and MPCV same. Not 2017 or 2020,  2016
...
Yeah, Congress can give NASA a full budget. No bucks, no Buck Rogers.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:12 PM
Mrs. Lee actually making some very very good points for a change, asking hard questions about what Houston's role will be in the future and why the heck we didn't a shuttle, asking how NASA expect's to inspire the next generation with no meaningful program.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: simonbp on 07/12/2011 04:13 PM
Between that and 2017 for a first SLS test flight, I think all Congress needs to do is disband NASA and hire everybody back for a new agency minus the previous top-level administration and voila, we'd reduce those dates by a couple years.

Remember, SLS was Congress's (Senate's) idea originally, and now it's backfired royally.

Apparently, canceling Ares because NASA doesn't know how to build a rocket, and then giving them a rocket to build isn't good strategy...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 04:13 PM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Its coming from the white house. That's where this is coming from, it doesn't take that long we were on track until July 8th got delayed because of the WH using OMB as a blocking piece.



Its become clear to me this is not going to get solved until Obama is gone.
Only clear in your mind, when it was Republicans who cut NASA by ~$2billion LESS THAN OBAMA'S REQUEST.

I mean, I didn't even vote for Obama, but he surely seems to support NASA with more funding than the Republicans in the House.

But keep telling yourself that Obama is trying to kill NASA... by funding it more than the House Republicans!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:15 PM
Another rep likes Bolden's emotion over Atlantis. Rep calls Atlantis a her - thus I automatically like this rep :D

Notes concerns over the next gen of astros etc. Concerned about the messaging.

We're looking at SLS, but the message is not getting to the people. What will be Houston's role? And wants a Shuttle being loaned to Houston.

Bolden: NASA is 17,000 civil service and 40,000 contractors. JSC will continue to play a critical role.

Q) So will we see a ramping up of employees?

Bolden: Over time you'll see a bottoming out and then a ramping up. Commercial entities will be represented in Houston and Space Coast.

Q) We're looking for jobs and expertise.

Bolden: The US will remain in the lead of space exploration. We will do deep space exploration. If we get less funding, we'll still do it, but it'll take longer.

Rep notes she's fighting for Houston and they need a shuttle.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:16 PM
Only post what's been said. It's still going on. I'll delete all the above back because people want to read what's said not opinion yet.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:17 PM
Rep now asking about propulsion depots vs. SLS and if we could do this sooner with on orbit refueling.

Bolden states he doesn't have the answer right now. References ongoing evaluations on SLS. Mentions EOR not being as cheap as BEOR
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 04:22 PM
Rep. Hall is saying he respects Bolden, then says he's begging (not asking) for information.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:23 PM
Rep heaping praise on Bolden. Looks like it's coming to a close.

Wants a closing statement.

Bolden: People need to look at what our current president has done in supporting the space program. I can't remember one which has taken such a personal interest....

...ok, he's just praising his boss.

Mr Hall wants a final decision out of him. Shouldn't take a year. We have a workforce, and there future is being heavily impacted by NASA's indecision. And whoever wrote this for me (OMG! Own goal) says this should be taken to the white house.

Deserved praise for strapping himself to a rocket three times. People almost worship you, but we're not asking for information, we're begging for information. I just urge you to look at Congress and what we've asked from you.

END.

WOW! Bolden totally won that. From that opening statement from Mr Hall, to Bolden's teary opening response, I thought they were going to beat him up. But somehow he held his ground and the lawmakers totally let him off the hook.

Got to give props where they are deserved, he somehow won that.

Bolden 1-0 Congress.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:24 PM
I removed mine Chris your's is more complete :D
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:24 PM
Considering that this is now over do you want me to start a separate discussion thread or let the discussions take place on here? I pulled some of my comments and saved them down for an alternate thread.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:25 PM
PS I'll leave most of the posts on the thread, I just thought I needed to grab control of the way people were getting into responding to each other, not what was being said ;)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:26 PM
Considering that this is now over do you want me to start a separate discussion thread or let the discussions take place on here? I pulled some of my comments and saved them down for an alternate thread.

Na, can follow up on this thread I reckon.

Thread is OPEN for opinion and personal comments. Be civil with each other! :)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 04:28 PM
My feeling is that Bolden has the unenviable job of trying to put lipstick on a pig.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 04:28 PM
Rep on it being a dicey time. Sounds like a science fan.

As you know, I come from Silicon Valley....how can we design with a capacity to include innovation which is not yet ready for implementation. Notes about a parafin based fuel. Reading off a news site about reducing cost via burn rate/capacity. She likes SpaceX.

How does the gov incorporate the innovations without holding up design?

Bolden: Bobby Braun is making sure we don't miss out on that. Notes R2 now being on the ISS, came from GM and JSC. Always looking at innovation.

Q) But what about parafin?

Bolden: We're not looking an alternate fuels.

Q) But SpaceX are going to use it on their next launch (??)

Bolden: I don't think so, they use LOX/RP (heh).

Q) But look into parafin for me!

What is parafin and what article about SpaceX was she talking about?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Space Pete on 07/12/2011 04:28 PM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew
-NASA does nothing for next 10 years

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(

Basically, Congress and the White House need to get on the same page. NASA is stuck in the middle of the two.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 04:28 PM
PS Sorry about any spelling mistakes. Thought it was more important to get the comments on than run stuff through a spellchecker.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/12/2011 04:29 PM
I'll admit, Bolden impressed me even more.  He did not try and play some kind of word game, as previous Admins were apt to do.  He told the facts as they were, Act be damned.  When pressed, he put the fault where it belonged, in a do-nothing Congress wanting the sun and the moon but refusing to pay for it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Warloc Alcott on 07/12/2011 04:31 PM
Greetings,
Well I for one, as with some others here, think for maybe the first time, Bolden had his "stuff" together. Also thought the committee was in good order and informed/concerned. Cept for maybe one who seemed concerned on where his pork was. I agree with Bolden, that any delay on SLS announcement is because of the continuing budget dwindling. Every time they get close to releasing something, the budget gets cut and they have to go back and re-evaluate. Like he said, something that would make it all easier, would be a consistent budget. No matter what it is, just let it stand and quit cutting it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 04:32 PM
I took down a full page of notes and need to get my head around this.

Most shocking question I found was that there seems to be questions of where the money went in the 2011 funding.

The sub charmin was very clever and got Bolden off guard.  Then asked for a full accounting of the 2011 funds.

Palazzo sub chairman:  2011 SLS funding, how much was transfered to other accounts?  How much is being rolled into 2012   Money diverted to other programs Centers.

Will post more later....
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/12/2011 04:32 PM
Rep on it being a dicey time. Sounds like a science fan.

As you know, I come from Silicon Valley....how can we design with a capacity to include innovation which is not yet ready for implementation. Notes about a parafin based fuel. Reading off a news site about reducing cost via burn rate/capacity. She likes SpaceX.

How does the gov incorporate the innovations without holding up design?

Bolden: Bobby Braun is making sure we don't miss out on that. Notes R2 now being on the ISS, came from GM and JSC. Always looking at innovation.

Q) But what about parafin?

Bolden: We're not looking an alternate fuels.

Q) But SpaceX are going to use it on their next launch (??)

Bolden: I don't think so, they use LOX/RP (heh).

Q) But look into parafin for me!

What is parafin and what article about SpaceX was she talking about?
I don't know about the SpaceX article, but Paraffin is a hydrocarbon derived from Wax, an alkaline wax to be precise.  It is an alternate name for Kerosene not sources from oil, typically from coal or wood product.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 04:32 PM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(

And this Pete, is why it is over.  This agency has failed.  This government has failed. 

The conflicting policy desirement, the lack of giving commercial the best chance of success by jeopardizing ISS, the fight over budget, the agency not having a plan for anything really, etc, etc, etc.

This is exactly what I predicted and this is the beginning of it playing out.  Find a new career choice.  I am.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 04:33 PM
Got to give props where they are deserved, he somehow won that.

Bolden 1-0 Congress.

He certainly held his ground well, and came across as clear-headed and well informed about (at least some) details.  Twice in different contexts he articulated what he perceives as the benefits of a single-launch architecture.  (First referring to one vehicle design vs. the two vehicles of 1.5 launch architectures, the second referring to the purported advantage compared to EOR in general.)

IMHO he is wrong -- monolithic launch will never again be the winning strategy -- but at least he seemed clear in his thinking about it!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: DaveJSC on 07/12/2011 04:33 PM
No one else has, so I will, thank you Chris for typing all of that out!

Our politicians are a waste of space and money. They were pathetic today.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 04:34 PM
WOW! Bolden totally won that. From that opening statement from Mr Hall, to Bolden's teary opening response, I thought they were going to beat him up. But somehow he held his ground and the lawmakers totally let him off the hook.

Got to give props where they are deserved, he somehow won that.

Bolden 1-0 Congress.

I thought so too. I hope that the Administration stops to hide Bolden, he can be asset for them. He made some mistakes in the past but he has clearly learned from them. He did very well, today!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:35 PM
Ok then re posting my earlier comments:

Honestly this whole thing is a huge joke IMO. Congress needs to DO SOMETHING to force NASA to follow the law which states: SLS ready for MANNED FLIGHTS by 2016 and MPCV same. Not 2017 or 2020,  2016
...
Yeah, Congress can give NASA a full budget. No bucks, no Buck Rogers.

Thats not the issue Bolden even SAID he already picked a design. Its very clear this "2020" crap is coming from OMB and that's coming from Obama pure and simple. Chicago style politics indeed.

I caution people that this is not a Cxp like situation where design issues were the reason for delays, this delay is purely a political piece, I see no reason why ANY of the leading RAC designs could not be ready by 2016, after all one of the constraints on all the teams was that they pick a design that would follow the law of congress IE be ready by 2016 same with MPCV

Instead we are getting this crap. I cannot BELIEVE this is happening.





Now then regarding comments about the House funding cuts: That will have to be reconciled with the Senate version later on and it didn't cut SLS but thats not the point. Yes part of the CXP problem was that it was not fully funded but it would not have mattered as CXP's main problem was that its core design would never have worked regardless

The problem we have here is that we already have a design selected, and it was ready to be announced and work to start on it when suddenly, in comes the OMB and the White House and then magically the rocket is "not going to be ready for manned flight until 2020, nor is MPCV" which is already much further along than that in development anyway which is really no better than cxp.




This is very clearly Obama getting involved and slowing the process down, there is no technical or budgetary reason why the selected design cannot be announced now and why it should take more than a year to get a report mandated by law to be done in January done. There is no reason why MPCV cannot be readdy by 2016 when its more than halfway through the development process already as a result of CXP work. There is no reason why a shuttle derived SLS cannot be flying OPERATIONAL flights by 2016 and have test flights as early as 2013. There is no reason why MPCV and SLS cannot serve as a backup to ISS.


The very obvious reason that this muck up is happening, and that it happened so very rapidly over the space of about 4 days mind you, is White House politics.[/u]

It so obvious you might as well have a bright red sign saying "Obama was here" flashing over this thing you can literally tell that's where it is coming from.


This is not fooling anyone not the workers, not Congress, and not the American people. Mr. Hall's comments very clearly demonstrate that Congress knows EXACTLY whats going on here and that they won't stand for the executive branch trying to bypass a bill that has been passed into law and that mandates a final design be availble NOW and be ready for operations by 2016 for the sake of politics.



This will not stand, I expect to see action in the form of a congressional investigation if nothing changes soon, have contacted my rep and seemed to get a similar feeling.


I urge everyone to contact their representatives on this one and DEMAND that Congress forcibly obtain the SLS design reports as a soon as possible, this crap has got to stop and has got to stop now.



That's my 2 cents on this.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: JMS on 07/12/2011 04:37 PM

Our politicians are a waste of space and money. They were pathetic today.
As someone with a Rep in my family, that is insulting... but par for the course in an era of huge, inaccurate paint brushes.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 04:39 PM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew
-NASA does nothing for next 10 years

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(
Not quite. Congress is not some monolithic body supporting only SLS/Orion. You heard many Congresspeople expressing support for commercial crew and science during this hearing. Also, the White House put forward a budget with ~$2billion more than Congress did, meaning there was actually enough money for science/tech/commercial AND some for SLS/MPCV. It's not a zero-sum game: those in Congress who support SLS at the expense of science/tech/commercial crew pushed for a NEGATIVE sum!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 04:39 PM

Our politicians are a waste of space and money. They were pathetic today.
As someone with a Rep in my family, that is insulting... but par for the course in an era of huge, inaccurate paint brushes.

No, it is accurate.  These questions were fluff and political theatre, just as I suggested it was going to be.  Tell me, what more do we know from our reps than we did prior to this hearing?  Isn't that the point of these? 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 04:39 PM
I agree with Bolden, that any delay on SLS announcement is because of the continuing budget dwindling. Every time they get close to releasing something, the budget gets cut and they have to go back and re-evaluate.

No, NASA does not.  NASA needs to comply with the law -- in this case the authorization act -- and provide Congress with a plan for SLS that is consistent with the provisions of that law.  If NASA rethought its plan every time a new funding proposal was made (e.g. an administration budget proposal or a committee reporting out a bill that is nowhere close to law yet) it would never be able to comply with the law.

Bolden asserted he couldn't give Congress the plan because parts of it were proprietary information.  By definition, that can't be the plan which the law required him to create.  The law required him to create a plan which he could and must give to Congress!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: RocketEconomist327 on 07/12/2011 04:40 PM
And this Pete, is why it is over.  This agency has failed.  This government has failed. <snip>

This is why we must always rely on the private sector.  I do agree that the agency and government has failed to this point. 

Its not over yet.

VR
RE327
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Warloc Alcott on 07/12/2011 04:40 PM
From what I got out of it, I disagree with those that think SLS/Orion is dead. Even NASA. IMO the committee wants both of them, as does Bolden. But I don't think the committee is pleased with his time line. 2020. Orion will be flying way before that.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:41 PM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(

And this Pete, is why it is over.  This agency has failed.  This government has failed. 

The conflicting policy desirement, the lack of giving commercial the best chance of success by jeopardizing ISS, the fight over budget, the agency not having a plan for anything really, etc, etc, etc.



This is exactly what I predicted and this is the beginning of it playing out.  Find a new career choice.  I am.


I wouldn't be so grim. I think that many of these problems will magically vanish when Obama is gone in 2012. Honestly it may get fixed sooner because Congress has all but opened an investigation into this.


Everyone is saying Congress was weak today but I did not see that, especially with Mr. Hall literally calling the white house out on this in his opening and closing statements I just don't see weakness I see an incoming Congressional investigation.


Literally what NASA is doing here is in violation of the Law, that is the 2011 and 2010 authorization acts. The acts state that BY LAW SLS must be ready by 2016 as must MPCV/Orion or what have you and that a report must be ready by this year (actually it was supposed to be January but whatever).


So this is a violation of the law and Congress made it clear today that they know that, IMO, based on Mr. Hall's comments if nothing else.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 04:42 PM
From what I got out of it, I disagree with those that think SLS/Orion is dead. Even NASA. IMO the committee wants both of them, as does Bolden. But I don't think the committee is pleased with his time line. 2020. Orion will be flying way before that.
I agree with most of what you said, here. Except for the last part.

If the forces that strongly support SLS don't want Orion to fly on EELV, then Orion probably won't be manned until 2020.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:42 PM

Our politicians are a waste of space and money. They were pathetic today.
As someone with a Rep in my family, that is insulting... but par for the course in an era of huge, inaccurate paint brushes.

No, it is accurate.  These questions were fluff and political theatre, just as I suggested it was going to be.  Tell me, what more do we know from our reps than we did prior to this hearing?  Isn't that the point of these? 

We know that if they do not get the SLS design+MPCV design and time frame in the next few months they will get it by force.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:43 PM
From what I got out of it, I disagree with those that think SLS/Orion is dead. Even NASA. IMO the committee wants both of them, as does Bolden. But I don't think the committee is pleased with his time line. 2020. Orion will be flying way before that.
I agree with most of what you said, here. Except for the last part.

If the forces that strongly support SLS don't want Orion to fly on EELV, then Orion probably won't be manned until 2020.

If the design choice is what causes this then I don't support SLS eithier because that's as bad as CXP.


But IMO that's not at all where this is coming from see my big comment a page back.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 04:44 PM

Our politicians are a waste of space and money. They were pathetic today.
As someone with a Rep in my family, that is insulting... but par for the course in an era of huge, inaccurate paint brushes.

No, it is accurate.  These questions were fluff and political theatre, just as I suggested it was going to be.  Tell me, what more do we know from our reps than we did prior to this hearing?  Isn't that the point of these? 

We know that if they do not get the SLS design+MPCV design and time frame in the next few months they will get it by force.

How? 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Warloc Alcott on 07/12/2011 04:45 PM
Well, if. . . if NASA is smart and Orion is ready. They will let it fly on whatever is the first to carry it.
From what I got out of it, I disagree with those that think SLS/Orion is dead. Even NASA. IMO the committee wants both of them, as does Bolden. But I don't think the committee is pleased with his time line. 2020. Orion will be flying way before that.
I agree with most of what you said, here. Except for the last part.

If the forces that strongly support SLS don't want Orion to fly on EELV, then Orion probably won't be manned until 2020.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 04:45 PM
What is parafin and what article about SpaceX was she talking about?
I don't know about the SpaceX article, but Paraffin is a hydrocarbon derived from Wax, an alkaline wax to be precise.  It is an alternate name for Kerosene not sources from oil, typically from coal or wood product.

I found an article on SpaceX and Paraffin but I don't know if that's the one that she was talking about:
http://www.popularmechanics.co.za/article/the-rocket-men-2009-10-01

Quote
With the resources of SpaceX, Mueller was able to produce a reliable engine with a simple design at a cut-rate price – the Merlin. It was the nation’s first new large liquid-fuel rocket engine to fly in 40 years. The Merlin runs on highly refined paraffin and cryogenically cooled liquid oxygen, and uses a single injector, unlike more complicated engines that mix fuel and oxidisers at multiple points. But, even with modern technology, rocket engines are notoriously unpredictable.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: MP99 on 07/12/2011 04:48 PM
Notes the things we know, like Orion GTA, 39B clean pad.

Schedule: Test Late 2017, Human flights early 2020s (yikes).


Rep on Orion.

Bolden: Orion will be ready 2017-2020

Q) So Orion will never be a back up for ISS if ISS goes to 2020 only?

Bolden: Probably safe to say that.
[Chris's quote extended by me]

Between that and 2017 for a first SLS test flight, I think all Congress needs to do is disband NASA and hire everybody back for a new agency minus the previous top-level administration and voila, we'd reduce those dates by a couple years.
[Chris's quote extended by me]

If, some parts of Congress want to can SLS and go fully commercial, this will strengthen their hand.

PL 111-267 calls for 70-100 ton(ne)s, HR'd, operational by 2016, and "shuttle-derived if practicable" (my phrasing).

I think we've just heard that it's not practicable to have that in place by 2016, which seems strange given his apparent support for this plan.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vanoord on 07/12/2011 04:48 PM
The history of virtually all of the regularly-used launch systems has been one of evolution, not tearing up the plans and starting afresh.

Sometimes blind alleys were followed, sometimes things were got right first time.

The path ahead for NASA vehicle design can't be mapped out right now for the next 20, 30 year - whatever route is followed, changes will be made for engineering reasons, be it transitioning from solid SRBs to liquid ones or whatever else.

To that end, it's more important that NASA make a start and get the basis of their future vehicle flying sooner rather than later; and certainly before anyone with experience either retires or goes to join commercial operatoers.

Better to hand the project to engineers and build a simple Jupiter-alike that can fly in 2015 that can be developed into the future than to spend from now until 2015 having committees designing something that might, on paper, be better.

These things could have been achieved by now if government and committees hadn't got in the way: committees create problems but engineers create solutions.

The tragedy is that the experience of Shuttle wasn't used a decade ago to evolve the platform to carry a newer, safer orbiter that retained the downmass capability; or that the architecture hasn't already been evolved into an in-line Jupiter-alike which would bring the perceived safety that Orion will bring.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 04:50 PM
Notes the things we know, like Orion GTA, 39B clean pad.

Schedule: Test Late 2017, Human flights early 2020s (yikes).


Rep on Orion.

Bolden: Orion will be ready 2017-2020

Q) So Orion will never be a back up for ISS if ISS goes to 2020 only?

Bolden: Probably safe to say that.
[Chris's quote extended by me]

Between that and 2017 for a first SLS test flight, I think all Congress needs to do is disband NASA and hire everybody back for a new agency minus the previous top-level administration and voila, we'd reduce those dates by a couple years.
[Chris's quote extended by me]

If, some parts of Congress want to can SLS and go fully commercial, this will strengthen their hand.

PL 111-267 calls for 70-100 ton(ne)s, HR'd, operational by 2016, and "shuttle-derived if practicable" (my phrasing).

I think we've just heard that it's not practicable to have that in place by 2016, which seems strange given his apparent support for this plan.

cheers, Martin

IMO it is very practicable to have this rocket ready by 2016, I see no reason why it can't be ready from a design  standpoint, at least based on what the RAC teams had in mind prior to this.


What I see here is the WH trying to muck things up and succeeding, and my proof for this is that there is no reason why in the space of 4 days NASA should suddenly delay a key decision announcement ( mind you the decision is already made) until the end of the year, essentially, and give timelines on par with CXP out of mid air when, up till now, nothing of the sort has happened.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: MP99 on 07/12/2011 04:50 PM
Q) SLS components - boosters, competition good or bad?

Bolden: I can share - based on speeding things along - we will use Solid Rocket Boosters until a time where allcomers can compete, including on liquid boosters (LOX/RP for the booster). The FINAL SLS could be a full and open competition if I can do what I want to do. (I guess he was talking about the boosters competition only)

I thought the "full and open competition" (ie non-booster elements) had been vetoed by HQ?

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Andy USA on 07/12/2011 04:51 PM
Chris left to cover STS-135. He asked people to be civil. I've cleared up what I see as unacceptable.

Note, that it is NOT allowable to be uncivil to other members. There's not a lot we can do about people being unkind about representatives in Congress, however.

Report posts which are uncivil to other members.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Lars_J on 07/12/2011 05:15 PM
We know that if they do not get the SLS design+MPCV design and time frame in the next few months they will get it by force.

And how do you think that will work??? Do you think Congress can overrule anything and just make things happen out of thin air?  :D That they can just legislate successful engineering in an byzantine government bureaucracy? Just say "make it so" and it will happen for sure?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 05:19 PM
We know that if they do not get the SLS design+MPCV design and time frame in the next few months they will get it by force.

And how do you think that will work??? Do you think Congress can overrule anything and just make things happen out of thin air?  :D


No but the fy 2011 budget which was passed into law last year states that that SLS meet certain time, budgetary, and mass constraints and it stated, very firmly I might add, that this report in question be made public and given to congress back in JANUARY of this year.


Here we are in July and we have Bolden saying it might not be until the end of this year and "he doesn't have the answers" yet again. Its a law that it be available back in January so actually they could start an investigation any time now if they wish. Today's comments, IMO, pretty clearly show that's the next course of action unless they get this report voluntarily and very soon.

Mind you this is no small matter, this is the report that details the timeline, budgetary needs, and finite design details of what is supposed to be the STS follow on and the rocket for our BEO program, thats a pretty significant report. Add to that the fact that NASA cannot start work on this rocket until this report is complete.


Its a big deal, and this hearing, IMO, was  not as tough as it should have been on Bolden regarding this issue, but it was *enough*.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 05:22 PM
I believe when she says paraffin they mean biofuel. Paraffin for the Brits means something else. Chris can correct this for me :)
Regards
Robert
http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/paraffin?region=us
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 05:26 PM
We know that if they do not get the SLS design+MPCV design and time frame in the next few months they will get it by force.

And how do you think that will work??? Do you think Congress can overrule anything and just make things happen out of thin air?  :D


No but the fy 2011 budget which was passed into law last year states that that SLS meet certain time, budgetary, and mass constraints and it stated, very firmly I might add, that this report in question be made public and given to congress back in JANUARY of this year.


Here we are in July and we have Bolden saying it might not be until the end of this year and "he doesn't have the answers" yet again. Its a law that it be available back in January so actually they could start an investigation any time now if they wish. Today's comments, IMO, pretty clearly show that's the next course of action unless they get this report voluntarily and very soon.

Mind you this is no small matter, this is the report that details the timeline, budgetary needs, and finite design details of what is supposed to be the STS follow on and the rocket for our BEO program, thats a pretty significant report. Add to that the fact that NASA cannot start work on this rocket until this report is complete.


Its a big deal, and this hearing, IMO, was  not as tough as it should have been on Bolden regarding this issue, but it was *enough*.

What do you actually expect them to do, though?  Specific actions?  They are rather limited.  They can hold hearings (already do so).  They can open an investigation (and join the senate).  They could do contempt charges, or something like that, but we are so far away from that, and the imagery is all bad for that (you would need something like willful negligence to go after a contempt charge).

Where they can screw with things is in the appropriation bill, but that has some limitations as well.  So what, specific actions, do you expect they'll take?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 05:30 PM
The specific actions I expect them to take is an investigation with the Senate ofc and potentially contempt charges in order to get this report. As I said the law states that this report be due back in January and its July and we have no clear answer when its going to be ready or what in god's name is causing this delay, nor is there an answer as to why suddenly SLS/MPCV cannot be ready for manned flights before 2020 where as the law also states it be ready by 2016 add to that the fact that even Bolden himself has referenced the 2016 date up till now in very recent speeches and presentations.


So yes, I see Mr. Hall's comments along with others today essentially as a "give us this information now or we will get it for you".

Time will tell but I have little faith in Congress if they can't make good on promises made less then a year ago.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 05:35 PM
The specific actions I expect them to take is an investigation with the Senate ofc and potentially contempt charges in order to get this report. As I said the law states that this report be due back in January and its July and we have no clear answer when its going to be ready or what in god's name is causing this delay, nor is there an answer as to why suddenly SLS/MPCV cannot be ready for manned flights before 2020 where as the law also states it be ready by 2016 add to that the fact that even Bolden himself has referenced the 2016 date up till now in very recent speeches and presentations.

So yes, I see Mr. Hall's comments along with others today essentially as a "give us this information now or we will get it for you".

Time will tell but I have little faith in Congress if they can't make good on promises made less then a year ago.
They can open their own investigation, I'll grant, or they could join the Senate, but as for a contempt charge...

Please.  That is so unlikely to happen.  Of all the potential for contempt charges, doing a contempt charge on Bolden, or on Obama, or whoever, its not going to happen on NASA.  If they try to do that, they'll look incredibly foolish, to the broader American public.

You'd be better off giving up your faith now.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 05:41 PM
The specific actions I expect them to take is an investigation with the Senate ofc and potentially contempt charges in order to get this report. As I said the law states that this report be due back in January and its July and we have no clear answer when its going to be ready or what in god's name is causing this delay, nor is there an answer as to why suddenly SLS/MPCV cannot be ready for manned flights before 2020 where as the law also states it be ready by 2016 add to that the fact that even Bolden himself has referenced the 2016 date up till now in very recent speeches and presentations.

So yes, I see Mr. Hall's comments along with others today essentially as a "give us this information now or we will get it for you".

Time will tell but I have little faith in Congress if they can't make good on promises made less then a year ago.
They can open their own investigation, I'll grant, or they could join the Senate, but as for a contempt charge...

Please.  That is so unlikely to happen.  Of all the potential for contempt charges, doing a contempt charge on Bolden, or on Obama, or whoever, its not going to happen on NASA.  If they try to do that, they'll look incredibly foolish, to the broader American public.

You'd be better off giving up your faith now.


I am not going to give up on my "faith" because that would mean giving up on NASA as an agency and any future Space program for this country.


Here is a thought: In a commercial based Space Program more like original fy 2011 NASA would still set the guidlines for what they needed in terms of capability from the commercial providers and when they needed it.

If because of WH politics or other outside interference NASA is now incapable of offering any sort of guidelines or timelines be it to existing contractors for SLS or for future contracts for launch services to ISS and beyond, and Congress is now ALSO incapable of MAKING them do so when failing to do so violates the law how can anyone expect an sort of space program to work???


The simple answer is that they can't. If this is where we are at right now, its the end of the American Space program and your watching the beginning of collapse right in front of you.

The Job of Congress is to make NASA to stick to its timelines and its budget based on the law irrespective of what the White House "wants", they failed to do this with CXP and have failed to do this with other programs, but they CANNOT fail to do this again in the modern budgetary environment and with the industrial and infrastructure base at risk of collapse.


And right now the Law states that this CRITICAL report, without which nothing can proceed, is intolerably late, a sentiment echoed by Mr. Hall and several other representatives today.


So yes, in the event that this report continues to *mysteriously* be delayed I would expect them to do whatever is necessary to obtain it and alleviate the problems which may or may not mean contempt charges for someone.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: alexw on 07/12/2011 05:43 PM
No doubt there's a lot to discuss about this hearing, and thank you very much to the paraphrasing-transcribers for their efforts, but there will be plenty of time to argue later -- why don't we watch the EVA instead?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vanoord on 07/12/2011 05:43 PM
I believe when she says paraffin they mean biofuel. Paraffin for the Brits means something else. Chris can correct this for me :)
Regards
Robert
http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/paraffin?region=us

We Brits believe that paraffin is something used in lamps - a quick check of Wikipedia confirms this to be a light grade of kerosene. The name 'paraffin' is also (apparently) applied to a heavier grade of kerosene used for domestic heating oil, but I've always known it as 'heating oil' (in contrast to 'lamp oil').

The concept that you could fuel a rocket on paraffin is thus something that causes a double-take!

Presumably the paraffin rockets referred to here are of the ilk of the hybrid rocket motor used in Space Ship One, using hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene / nitrous oxide.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mrhuggy on 07/12/2011 05:44 PM
I believe when she says paraffin they mean biofuel. Paraffin for the Brits means something else. Chris can correct this for me :)
Regards
Robert
http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/paraffin?region=us


When she was talking about it the NOFBX came to mind which is a HO2 Hydrocarbon mono propellent - http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=24352.50
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/12/2011 05:46 PM
We know that if they do not get the SLS design+MPCV design and time frame in the next few months they will get it by force.

And how do you think that will work??? Do you think Congress can overrule anything and just make things happen out of thin air?  :D


No but the fy 2011 budget which was passed into law last year states that that SLS meet certain time, budgetary, and mass constraints and it stated, very firmly I might add, that this report in question be made public and given to congress back in JANUARY of this year.


Here we are in July and we have Bolden saying it might not be until the end of this year and "he doesn't have the answers" yet again. Its a law that it be available back in January so actually they could start an investigation any time now if they wish. Today's comments, IMO, pretty clearly show that's the next course of action unless they get this report voluntarily and very soon.

Mind you this is no small matter, this is the report that details the timeline, budgetary needs, and finite design details of what is supposed to be the STS follow on and the rocket for our BEO program, thats a pretty significant report. Add to that the fact that NASA cannot start work on this rocket until this report is complete.


Its a big deal, and this hearing, IMO, was  not as tough as it should have been on Bolden regarding this issue, but it was *enough*.
Think on it a moment.  You are effectively saying that Congress legislated that SLS have passed PDR, which is where the necessary data of a finalized form of the vehicle would be ready for the finalized report, within 90 days.  Tell me, do you honestly think that Bolden, or anyone, could put a vehicle through PDR in 90 days which met all requirements and would not be derailed by a contract protest, from scratch?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 05:48 PM
No doubt there's a lot to discuss about this hearing, and thank you very much to the paraphrasing-transcribers for their efforts, but there will be plenty of time to argue later -- why don't we watch the EVA instead?

"Chris likes this post" ;D
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 05:53 PM
I believe when she says paraffin they mean biofuel. Paraffin for the Brits means something else. Chris can correct this for me :)
Regards
Robert
http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/paraffin?region=us

We Brits believe that paraffin is something used in lamps - a quick check of Wikipedia confirms this to be a light grade of kerosene. The name 'paraffin' is also (apparently) applied to a heavier grade of kerosene used for domestic heating oil, but I've always known it as 'heating oil' (in contrast to 'lamp oil').

The concept that you could fuel a rocket on paraffin is thus something that causes a double-take!



Yep, which is why it threw me a bit as all I could think about was my Grandma's Christmas lamp ;D
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 05:58 PM
It's quite possible that what's-her-name had been receiving advice from someone whose favorite word for RP-1 or kerosene is, in fact, paraffin. Technically, methane is a "paraffin," as well.

When I hear "paraffin," I think "wax." I sure hope she wasn't talking about using a hybrid!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: MP99 on 07/12/2011 05:58 PM
If, some parts of Congress want to can SLS and go fully commercial, this will strengthen their hand.

PL 111-267 calls for 70-100 ton(ne)s, HR'd, operational by 2016, and "shuttle-derived if practicable" (my phrasing).

I think we've just heard that it's not practicable to have that in place by 2016, which seems strange given his apparent support for this plan.

IMO it is very practicable to have this rocket ready by 2016, I see no reason why it can't be ready from a design  standpoint, at least based on what the RAC teams had in mind prior to this.


What I see here is the WH trying to muck things up and succeeding, and my proof for this is that there is no reason why in the space of 4 days NASA should suddenly delay a key decision announcement ( mind you the decision is already made) until the end of the year, essentially, and give timelines on par with CXP out of mid air when, up till now, nothing of the sort has happened.

I have no idea whether this comes from WH, NASA HQ, OMB, or even the RACs. (Simply, there's no way for me to get the information on which to make a decision). Perhaps it's based on "new budget realities", given the "Budget Req" figures linked in post #6 (the RACs seemed to offer viable options under FY11 budgets).

However, the result seems to be that NASA's position is "not practicable by 2016". Have to wonder if that would have been different if we'd started 12-24 months ago.

But if they stick with that, does Congress still go all-out to support SLS, or do they admit defeat and allow a "less-NASA-hands-on" rocket (eg FFP with ULA, SpaceX, etc and NASA as sole customer / paying all the bills).

Hell, at this point I could see SLS cancelled, and Shuttle revived until two commercial crew systems (or MPCV on AVH) have made a couple of flights each.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: styler on 07/12/2011 06:00 PM
The committee was gentle on Bolden because they respect him. It was his boss they were talking to.

OMB has the appearance of some third-party accounting firm that does budget evaluations and wields an independent axe, but it's a White House department and part of the political process of policy and serves the President by telling agencies what they will do - or won't do - with money appropriated by Congress. It's how the President gets to run his government, and don't think Congress hasn't been getting that message.

You can fault Bush for failing to address funding or program issues during his presidency, but those are past problems eclipsed by the here and now. Unfortunately, the reason we have no direction here in July, 2011, is not because of anything Bush did a couple of years ago but because our current head of government isn't offering one. Congress is complaining about it, but they aren't likely to get any quick reaction.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kch on 07/12/2011 06:02 PM
I believe when she says paraffin they mean biofuel. Paraffin for the Brits means something else. Chris can correct this for me :)
Regards
Robert
http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/paraffin?region=us

We Brits believe that paraffin is something used in lamps - a quick check of Wikipedia confirms this to be a light grade of kerosene. The name 'paraffin' is also (apparently) applied to a heavier grade of kerosene used for domestic heating oil, but I've always known it as 'heating oil' (in contrast to 'lamp oil').

The concept that you could fuel a rocket on paraffin is thus something that causes a double-take!

Presumably the paraffin rockets referred to here are of the ilk of the hybrid rocket motor used in Space Ship One, using hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene / nitrous oxide.



A hybrid rocket motor using paraffin wax as the fuel was proposed some time back  -- the following article has links to groups working on this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hybrid_rocket
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: hydra9 on 07/12/2011 06:02 PM
"While our plan calls for the initial  destination for human flight beyond LEO to target an asteroid by 2025, other destinations could include  cis-lunar space such as the Earth-Moon Lagrange points, the lunar surface, and eventually Mars and its
moons."  Bolden 7/12/11

Since the core systems of the SLS are supposed to be operational by 2016, is the administration seriously advocating that NASA  wait nearly 9 years to use the system for a manned mission??? I think we're going to the Moon whether Obama likes it or not! Plus Obama won't even be President anymore once the SLS is fully operational.

In reality, there will be no manned missions  beyond cis-lunar space until we finally deal with the reality that in order to protect the human brain from potentially brain damaging heavy nuclei, we're going to have to utilize several hundred tonnes of water or hydrogen mass shielding. And that pretty much eliminates the use of  chemical rockets for such manned interplanetary missions.

Such journeys will  require extremely fuel efficient interplanetary propulsion systems such as plasma rocket engines or light sails.  To minimize the delta-v requirements for such  heavily radiation shielded vessels, interplanetary flights will also probably have to start at the Earth-Moon Lagrange points. The several hundred tonnes of water or hydrogen radiation shielding for such manned vessels will probably have to come  from the lunar surface (the lunar poles), or Earth (through super heavy lift vehicles) or from the importation of water or hydrogen from NEO asteroids or possibly even from the moons of Mars. 

Marcel F. Williams
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/12/2011 06:05 PM
"While our plan calls for the initial  destination for human flight beyond LEO to target an asteroid by 2025, other destinations could include  cis-lunar space such as the Earth-Moon Lagrange points, the lunar surface, and eventually Mars and its
moons."  Bolden 7/12/11

Since the core systems of the SLS are supposed to be operational by 2016, is the administration seriously advocating that NASA  wait nearly 9 years to use the system for a manned mission??? I think we're going to the Moon whether Obama likes it or not! Plus Obama won't even be President anymore once the SLS is fully operational.

In reality, there will be no manned missions  beyond cis-lunar space until we finally deal with the reality that in order to protect the human brain from potentially brain damaging heavy nuclei, we're going to have to utilize several hundred tonnes of water or hydrogen mass shielding. And that pretty much eliminates the use of  chemical rockets for such manned interplanetary missions.

Such journeys will  require extremely fuel efficient interplanetary propulsion systems such as plasma rocket engines or light sails.  To minimize the delta-v requirements for such  heavily radiation shielded vessels, interplanetary flights will also probably have to start at the Earth-Moon Lagrange points. The several hundred tonnes of water or hydrogen radiation shielding for such manned vessels will probably have to come  from the lunar surface (the lunar poles), or Earth (through super heavy lift vehicles) or from the importation of water or hydrogen from NEO asteroids or possibly even from the moons of Mars. 

Marcel F. Williams

Haven't you heard? SLS won't be fully operational and ready to launch humans before the 2020s
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: stealthyplains on 07/12/2011 06:07 PM
Yes, but the real trigger for dark energy was the mapping of the CMB by COBE and WMAP, both of which are NASA spacecraft that were/are orders of magnitude cheaper than Hubble.

And Hubble has actually been of limited utility to the exoplanet community, as they generally need much more time per observation than TACs are willing to allocate. Kepler, in its short time on (heliocentric) orbit, has done more for planetary science than Hubble has 20 years. And again, it was much cheaper than Hubble.

The real debate in the astrophysics community is between these small, focused missions and JWST, the everything for everybody mission. It would be great to have both, but JWST's financial perfidy has meant that lots of small missions are being chopped.

Completely correct.  NASA has a habit of defending its expensive missions' problems using its cheaper missions' results.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: stealthyplains on 07/12/2011 06:09 PM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew
-NASA does nothing for next 10 years

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(

Basically, Congress and the White House need to get on the same page. NASA is stuck in the middle of the two.

About right!  Clearly the White House is correct, of course.  :)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Bill White on 07/12/2011 06:10 PM
About right!  Clearly the White House is correct, of course.  :)

Even if true, we will have a new White House, either in January 2013 or January 2017. Therefore, unless Congress is on-board, no plan is sustainable.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: rjholling on 07/12/2011 06:20 PM
It seems a bit ridiculous for them to come out and say that there will not be manned missions before 2020 when the law clearly states that this is to begin in 2016.  Even if there is no foul play afoot there should be an investigation as to why NASA suddenly needs 4 more years to do their job.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/12/2011 06:21 PM
I think it's perfectly natural for NASA and OMB to put increased cost scrutiny on SLS and triple check the math.  Bolden seemed personally concerned with not setting up another CxP scenario and JWST is making the same case for him.   I'm sure he sees no benefit to having a Mike Griffin legacy.

But even if it's an evil conspiracy to deprive space fans of their cookies,  it was well justified today.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/12/2011 06:27 PM
About right!  Clearly the White House is correct, of course.  :)

Even if true, we will have a new White House, either in January 2013 or January 2017. Therefore, unless Congress is on-board, no plan is sustainable.

But we will also have a (more than one) new Congress, so...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: JMS on 07/12/2011 06:34 PM
Precisely.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/12/2011 06:43 PM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew
-NASA does nothing for next 10 years

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(

Basically, Congress and the White House need to get on the same page. NASA is stuck in the middle of the two.

About right!  Clearly the White House is correct, of course.  :)

I see Congress as desiring SLS/MPCV mainly because it brings money to the Congresspeople's districts and gets them reelected, not because they've looked at the alternatives and decided that's the best way to go BEO.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Spacely on 07/12/2011 06:45 PM
I think it's perfectly natural for NASA and OMB to put increased cost scrutiny on SLS and triple check the math.  Bolden seemed personally concerned with not setting up another CxP scenario and JWST is making the same case for him.   I'm sure he sees no benefit to having a Mike Griffin legacy.

But even if it's an evil conspiracy to deprive space fans of their cookies,  it was well justified today.

Totally agree.  Also, the increasing -- rather than decreasing -- budget/deficit/debt fluctuations coming out of Washington since the April CR was belatedly passed have only made things more complicated.

Also, to his credit, Bolden has been saying something to the effect of, "We only get one crack at this/this is our last crack" for MONTHS, so while the SLS delays are hard to swallow for SLS boosters, they should not be unexpected.

Basically, in my view, is boils down to this: ESAS was a RUSHED, compromised study. One can't attack that for five years and then get all huffy when NASA takes six months rather than three to decide on a new SDHLV (and with budget run-outs that are about 40% what Ares enjoyed).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 06:46 PM
At the rate we are “not” launching rockets at this time, “paraffin” based fuels is a diversionary topic at best.  I could see it of value for biodiesel with thousands of transport trucks on the road at any given time. Launch vehicles not so much… Maybe when we are launching every hour on the hour. :) This is the air force program she referred to.
Regards
Robert
http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/story_generic.jsp?channel=aerospacedaily&id=news/BIOF013009.xml
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 06:47 PM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew
-NASA does nothing for next 10 years

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(

Basically, Congress and the White House need to get on the same page. NASA is stuck in the middle of the two.

About right!  Clearly the White House is correct, of course.  :)

I see Congress as desiring SLS/MPCV mainly because it brings money to the Congresspeople's districts and gets them reelected, not because they've looked at the alternatives and decided that's the best way to go BEO.
While I don't think SLS is the way to go, I don't think those are the entire motives of Congress. I know some Congressional staff really believe SLS is the best way to go. They think NASA has to have its own launcher (partly because some of them come from a history of working on a NASA-specific launch system, so they have an emotional attachment to a NASA-specific launch vehicle), that it's essential to NASA.

I disagree with them (strongly... a NASA-only launcher is a big mistake), but I don't necessarily think it's ONLY because of reelection concerns. Some of the staffers really honestly believe something like SLS is the best approach.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 06:56 PM
While I don't think SLS is the way to go, I don't think those are the entire motives of Congress. I know some Congressional staff really believe SLS is the best way to go. They think NASA has to have its own launcher (partly because some of them come from a history of working on a NASA-specific launch system, so they have an emotional attachment to a NASA-specific launch vehicle), that it's essential to NASA.

I disagree with them (strongly... a NASA-only launcher is a big mistake), but I don't necessarily think it's ONLY because of reelection concerns. Some of the staffers really honestly believe something like SLS is the best approach.

And again, if a "NASA-only" launcher is such a big mistake, then start asking the right questions on the threads you have been starting.  We have had that discussion in the past.  NASA has had the opportunity, for a time measured in something like 18 months, to prove you right or wrong.  They have not.  Why? 

Blaming people or a potential rocket is not the right answer.  Asking what we are going to do with or without it, how we are going to do it and generally when is the start of asking the right questions. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 07:01 PM
While I don't think SLS is the way to go, I don't think those are the entire motives of Congress. I know some Congressional staff really believe SLS is the best way to go. They think NASA has to have its own launcher (partly because some of them come from a history of working on a NASA-specific launch system, so they have an emotional attachment to a NASA-specific launch vehicle), that it's essential to NASA.

I disagree with them (strongly... a NASA-only launcher is a big mistake), but I don't necessarily think it's ONLY because of reelection concerns. Some of the staffers really honestly believe something like SLS is the best approach.

And again, if a "NASA-only" launcher is such a big mistake, then start asking the right questions on the threads you have been starting.  We have had that discussion in the past.  NASA has had the opportunity, for a time measured in something like 18 months, to prove you right or wrong.  They have not.  Why? 

Blaming people or a potential rocket is not the right answer.  Asking what we are going to do with or without it, how we are going to do it and generally when is the start of asking the right questions. 
I was only saying that I don't think that 'reelection' is the only motivation (nor should it be).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Bill White on 07/12/2011 07:16 PM
About right!  Clearly the White House is correct, of course.  :)

Even if true, we will have a new White House, either in January 2013 or January 2017. Therefore, unless Congress is on-board, no plan is sustainable.

But we will also have a (more than one) new Congress, so...

In the US House, incumbents tend to win at least 90% of the time.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mr. mark on 07/12/2011 07:21 PM
OK, I've been listening to alot of concern and I knew it would turn out this way. NASA can't deliver manned space until sometime around or after 2020. That came as a shock to alot of people here but, the writing was on the wall if anyone cared to read it. It also comes with the realization that without commercial we may not be flying until that date. That's why alot of us got on the commercial train so to speak, not because NASA could not do the job because, they can, just at a much slower pace. It may be that without government funding, near term, the only company that will be flying people into space, although suborbital, will be Richard Bransons' Virgin Galactic. Commercial is the only real way to get us back to orbit near term. That much is clear and even that will take government funds to do so. No grinding of teeth will change things and no election will change things. Unless Romney wins the Republican nomination, it's pretty clear that Obama will continue to be president well after 2012. There is no clear canidate on the Republican side that can get moderate votes which is the majority of the United States. I'm not even sure a change of political direction can change things anymore. We saw the process for Constellation under a Republican administration, it was not much better. Anyway as far as NASA is concerned it's going to be a long wait.   
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: RocketEconomist327 on 07/12/2011 07:26 PM
SLS will not launch humans before 2020.

Its that simple... so much for closing that gap...

Typical big government.

VR
RE327
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 07:29 PM
Unless Romney wins the Republican nomination, it's pretty clear that Obama will continue to be president well after 2012. There is no clear canidate on the Republican side that can get moderate votes which is the majority of the United States.

I'm one independent who's prepared to vote for a moderate Republican like Romney.  (If the GOP nominates a fringe right wing candidate like Bachmann I may just sit out the 2012 election in disgust.)  But has Romney shown any inclination to support human spaceflight?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: AndrewSTS on 07/12/2011 07:30 PM
SLS will not launch humans before 2020.

Its that simple... so much for closing that gap...

Typical big government.

VR
RE327

SLS will not launch humans before 2020.

Its that simple... so much for closing that gap...

Typical big government.

VR
RE327

Statements of fact like that are only going to annoy people. Stop fishing for reactions. Please add to the debate, instead of baiting.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/12/2011 07:33 PM
I really don't have the words to express just how ridiculous this has become.

NASA's technical staff are more than capable of making a basic SDLV fully operational (manned) in less than 6 years.   If the Admin is saying 9 years, then someone is putting more than a finger on the scales (wow, we've never seen that before!).

I call bullsh*t.

Sadly, the political reps we saw today, appear to have mostly fallen for the smoke and mirrors they have been presented over the last year.   And because of that, I believe their opposition are going to get away with it.

I am more convinced than ever, that NASA's senior leadership is deliberately setting SLS up for a massive fall.   That failure will allow them to hand the whole shooting match to commercial, which is their ultimate goal.

I think they have played this very well indeed, and it is my opinion that SLS is now effectively doomed, even before it begins.   My only question now, is how much of the NASA political support base and funding base it will take with it into the trash can of history...

Ross.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mjcrsmith on 07/12/2011 07:35 PM
SLS will not launch humans before 2020.

Its that simple... so much for closing that gap...

By "closing the gap" do you mean NASA human launches to the ISS?

If so, then that is not the intended destination of SLS as reiterated by Mr. Bolden today. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 07:37 PM
I really don't have the words to express just how ridiculous this has become.

NASA's technical staff are more than capable of making a basic SDLV fully operational (manned) in less than 6 years.   If the Admin is saying 9 years, then someone is putting more than a finger on the scales (wow, we've never seen that before!).

I call bullsh*t.

Sadly, the political reps we saw today, appear to have mostly fallen for the smoke and mirrors.   And because of that, I believe their opposition are going to get away with it.

I am more convinced than ever, that NASA's senior leadership is setting SLS up for a massive fall.   That will allow them to hand the whole shooting match to commercial, which is their ultimate goal.

I think they have played this very well indeed, and it is my opinion that SLS is now effectively doomed, even before it begins.   My only question now, is how much of the NASA political base and funding base it will take with it into the trash can of history...

Ross.

The estimate of 9 years is based on the President's FY2012 NASA budget. Remember that the funding for both the SLS and the MPCV were significantly reduced in the President's FY2012 NASA budget. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 07:37 PM
I think it's perfectly natural for NASA and OMB to put increased cost scrutiny on SLS and triple check the math.

Totally agree.

I would too, if it could be done in a way that was consistent with the law.  Too bad Bolden has chosen a way that includes his failure to comply with the section 309 reporting requirement.

What the Senate authors of that language clearly envisioned was that about now, 90 days after the 90 day report, a dialog between the branches of government would be taking place.  They knew NASA would have a tough time meeting the SLS time/budget restrictions.  That was the point of the section 309 report -- "Tell us where we need to bend, and let's talk about it."

Instead Bolden has chosen a path of explicit secrecy.  He said he couldn't reveal the plan because it included parts that were proprietary.  He didn't offer to provide the plan with those parts redacted.  He chose to keep the entire plan a secret until it would be too late to discuss it before diving into its implementation.  He has thus intentionally subverted the clear intent of Congress by breaking the law.

Do you really support him in that?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Halidon on 07/12/2011 07:39 PM
I'm one independent who's prepared to vote for a moderate Republican like Romney.  (If the GOP nominates a fringe right wing candidate like Bachmann I may just sit out the 2012 election in disgust.)  But has Romney shown any inclination to support human spaceflight?
I'll just point out that the big (borderline huge) cut being proposed in NASA's top line right now is not coming from the Democratic-controlled Senate or Administration, it's coming from the Republican-held House.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: RocketEconomist327 on 07/12/2011 07:42 PM
SLS will not launch humans before 2020.

Its that simple... so much for closing that gap...

Typical big government.

VR
RE327

SLS will not launch humans before 2020.

Its that simple... so much for closing that gap...

Typical big government.

VR
RE327

Statements of fact like that are only going to annoy people. Stop fishing for reactions. Please add to the debate, instead of baiting.

Tell that to Administrator Bolden then.  Because this was pulled RIGHT FROM HIS OWN WRITTEN TESTIMONY!

PAGE SEVEN, AT THE BOTTOM.  AND I QUOTE:

Quote from: Administrator Bolden
Although NASA must still finalize an integrated test flight plan, based on the President’s FY 2012 budget request, NASA is targeting that the first uncrewed SLS developmental flight or mission could take place in late 2017 to support a crewed mission by the early 2020s and a visit to an asteroid in 2025. This target date also depends on how quickly acquisition decisions are made so that physical development work can begin on SLS elements and integration processes.

Maybe some of you people mindlessly worshiping at the alter SLS need to realize that SLS does not do anything people claim.  All it does is eat the limited resources NASA has.

Whatever,
RE327
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/12/2011 07:48 PM
Instead Bolden has chosen a path of explicit secrecy.  He said he couldn't reveal the plan because it included parts that were proprietary.

I happen to know for an absolute fact that every single contractor has waived "proprietary" issues for SLS and that any member of Congress can get whatever info they choose to, directly from the contractors, without limitation.

NASA as a Federal Agency can't claim proprietary itself, because Congress is the correctly appointed oversight.

So why is Bolden playing this card in Congressional testimony?   Is he trying to hide something?

Ross.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 07:51 PM
Maybe some of you people mindlessly worshiping at the alter SLS need to realize that SLS does not do anything people claim.  All it does is eat the limited resources NASA has.

Whatever,
RE327

His point stands, look at your comment here.  You yourself do not know what SLS will do or will not do because you have insufficient details in which to make such an assesment. 

As long as you are jumping on this particular bandwagon, General Bolden also said today that without SLS there is no exploration.  Don't like that answer?  That is fine and that is your right.  However, as I have mentioned multiple times, then start asking the right questions about with or without SLS.  I have put those out here many times and surely you have seen them. 

So perhaps you could begin to contribute instead of throwing grenade after grenade, on purpose in my opinion, and making statements you refuse to back-up or give any data/insight as to why you make them. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 07:51 PM
Instead Bolden has chosen a path of explicit secrecy.  He said he couldn't reveal the plan because it included parts that were proprietary.

I happen to know for an absolute fact that every single contractor has waived "proprietary" issues for SLS and that any member of Congress can get whatever info they choose to, directly from the contractors, without limitation.

NASA as a Federal Agency can't claim proprietary itself, because Congress is the correctly appointed oversight.

So why is Bolden playing this card in Congressional testimony?   Is he trying to hide something?

Ross.

He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times (and likely also NSF for that matter...).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 07:57 PM
Maybe some of you people mindlessly worshiping at the alter SLS need to realize that SLS does not do anything people claim.  All it does is eat the limited resources NASA has.

Here are some things I heard Bolden claim SLS and MPCV will do:

In response to a question from a Mississippi representative, he indicated SLS will continue to test J-2X on the A-2 stand at Stennis.  In response to a question from a Ohio representative, he indicated MPCV will continue to do (altitude?) testing at Glenn.  In response to a question from a Alabama representative, he indicated SLS will continue to funnel money through Marshall rocket designers into the Huntsville economy.  In response to a question from a Texas representative, he indicated that for SLS they saw a need to hire more astronauts in Houston.  Had a representative from Louisiana asked a question, Bolden would have spoken about how SLS will be built at Michoud. Is there any benefit in continuing, or (oink) is the point clear?

What the nation does not know, and what we cannot know until Bolden obeys the law, is what the SLS vehicle might look like.  But clearly those of us who care much about that aren't fully represented in the House of Representatives!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mjcrsmith on 07/12/2011 07:58 PM
...
 Chicago style politics

Please define this term.

1.   Contrast it to politics in any other major city.
2.   Please state why this is germane to this topic
3.   Preferably on another thread.
4.   Preferably on another site.


Sheesh!

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 07:59 PM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: RocketEconomist327 on 07/12/2011 08:01 PM
Maybe some of you people mindlessly worshiping at the alter SLS need to realize that SLS does not do anything people claim.  All it does is eat the limited resources NASA has.

Whatever,
RE327

His point stands, look at your comment here.  You yourself do not know what SLS will do or will not do because you have insufficient details in which to make such an assesment.

No, it was looking for an uninformed reaction which he pleasantly gave me to illustrate my point which I made brilliantly mind you.

Quote from: OV-106
As long as you are jumping on this particular bandwagon, General Bolden also said today that without SLS there is no exploration.  Don't like that answer?  That is fine and that is your right.  However, as I have mentioned multiple times, then start asking the right questions about with or without SLS.  I have put those out here many times and surely you have seen them.
So all the exploration we have done with Delta and Atlas never happened.  GOT IT!   

Quote from: OV-106
So perhaps you could begin to contribute instead of throwing grenade after grenade, on purpose in my opinion, and making statements you refuse to back-up or give any data/insight as to why you make them.

I contribute all the time, and it continually gets shot down with the "Only NASA" crowd, such as yourself.  So now I illustrate my points by pointing out how ridiculous SLS is. 

Only through CCDev will the gap be reduced.  All of you banking on the SLS, CEV Orion MPCV team getting Americans into orbit before an Atlas or or Falcon are going to be disappointed.  However, for CCDev to work we must "sacrifice" the Apollo infrastructure. 

Whats it going to be.  Because that right there is the battle.  Big, slow, expensive, wasteful, government program or lean commercial with NASA oversight.

Something has to give.

VR
RE327
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 08:02 PM
I happen to know for an absolute fact that every single contractor has waived "proprietary" issues for SLS and that any member of Congress can get whatever info they choose to, directly from the contractors, without limitation.

NASA as a Federal Agency can't claim proprietary itself, because Congress is the correctly appointed oversight.

So why is Bolden playing this card in Congressional testimony?   Is he trying to hide something?

They may have waived proprietary intellectual property issues for the technical information, but I speculate it is cost information that is being "protected" (read "hidden").
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 08:08 PM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

The decision was made by Bolden on June 20th as Chris reported. The time for public debate is over. Bolden mentionned that the preliminary comments from the independant study is that NASA's cost estimates were realistic.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 08:15 PM
Maybe some of you people mindlessly worshiping at the alter SLS need to realize that SLS does not do anything people claim.  All it does is eat the limited resources NASA has.

Whatever,
RE327

His point stands, look at your comment here.  You yourself do not know what SLS will do or will not do because you have insufficient details in which to make such an assesment.

No, it was looking for an uninformed reaction which he pleasantly gave me to illustrate my point which I made brilliantly mind you.

Quote from: OV-106
As long as you are jumping on this particular bandwagon, General Bolden also said today that without SLS there is no exploration.  Don't like that answer?  That is fine and that is your right.  However, as I have mentioned multiple times, then start asking the right questions about with or without SLS.  I have put those out here many times and surely you have seen them.
So all the exploration we have done with Delta and Atlas never happened.  GOT IT!   

Quote from: OV-106
So perhaps you could begin to contribute instead of throwing grenade after grenade, on purpose in my opinion, and making statements you refuse to back-up or give any data/insight as to why you make them.

I contribute all the time, and it continually gets shot down with the "Only NASA" crowd, such as yourself.  So now I illustrate my points by pointing out how ridiculous SLS is. 

Only through CCDev will the gap be reduced.  All of you banking on the SLS, CEV Orion MPCV team getting Americans into orbit before an Atlas or or Falcon are going to be disappointed.  However, for CCDev to work we must "sacrifice" the Apollo infrastructure. 

Whats it going to be.  Because that right there is the battle.  Big, slow, expensive, wasteful, government program or lean commercial with NASA oversight.

Something has to give.

VR
RE327

Now you have been exposed for who and what you are.  I am hardly the "only NASA" crowd.  If you cannot see the complexities at work here and by default this is then what you believe, I suggest you re-examine your interests of "economics, politics and humanity in space".  You could also easily review my post history, or just the general posts that I know you have seen shortly after they are made. 

The fact that you continue to see the current situation as "CCDev versus MPCV/SLS" is nothing but sad given the time you have spent here, and elsewhere, and if you are informed as you believe you are.  Instead you default to "Apollo infrastructure" which shows your lack of knowledge.

The fact you totally ignore my recommendation, to perhaps once and for all prove you and others right or wrong and perhaps raise the signal-to-noise ratio around here, was totally ignored in this post in favor for a cheap and sorry personal attack that is not even accurate in the slightest.  It is a trend for you and others that I hope other users note.

I will end with I do not seem to recall, and neither does history it seem, any human "exploration" with Delta and Atlas, which are just rockets in the first place. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 08:15 PM
...
 Chicago style politics

Please define this term.

1.   Contrast it to politics in any other major city.
2.   Please state why this is germane to this topic
3.   Preferably on another thread.
4.   Preferably on another site.


Sheesh!



It refers to the following style of politics prevalent in not just Chicago but many places. However it is referenced by many (including Obama) as having been prevalent in Chicago:


It is as follows, you do not accept defeat on any issue ever. This means that if you lose, as Obama did when he was forced to sign an amended FY2011 budget that went counter to many of the things he wanted (by far not just limited to NASA, there were many differences), you do your best to muck up and ruin the plans of who'sever idea won out.


It is just as Ross said above, that is exactly what Obama is doing, these new timelines are coming directly from white house crap, and its easy to tell that is whats happening because until 4 days ago 2016 was still perfectly reasonable and the Administrator himself was saying he would announce on the 8th But then suddenly, something changed and magically 6 YEARS of extra time and money appeared out of thin air.

The very next thing that happened is Obama came out, on the debt debate issue, and said that social security would stop after the 2nd of August if the Republicans don't "Agree" with him and make a *Deal*. The truth of the debt debate is there is no danger of default, actually if a debt deal is not reached the WH would prioritize which things get funded and which do not with that funding being sent to lower the deficit in an emergency fashion So what he is effectively saying on this separate issue is that he would not fund social security.

He is doing this to bring enough pressure to bear to force the other side to lose, or to make them look as bad as possible if they win, the EXACT same thing he has done and is continuing to do with spaceflight: Make Congress either look bad, or stall long enough that they cannot execute the SLS plan because the industrial base is disintegrated. To that end he is playing his last available muck up card, which is to force NASA to delay critical mandated plan releases, and THAT is what should be investigated because technically that's illegal. But he is not the first nor the last to do this.

Now I ask everyone here, ask yourselves, honestly, based on what this man has done up till now and what he is doing do you honestly think the reason that suddenly, in a 4 day period, 6 years and countless billions and a key report were all added and delayed FOR NO APPARENT REASON when up till now everything was on track, for any possible reason except white house interference?!??!


*That* is the definition of Chicago style politics, never except defeat no matter what happens regardless of who or what you damage in the process stick by your ideology till the bloody end. And that is exactly what Obama is doing on EVERY SINGLE ISSUE AT HAND.


That, is whats going on here and it will change as soon as he is out of office, but we don't have 18 more months to wait, so I expect Congress to get their hands dirty and do what must be done, in this case, MAKE NASA do its bloody job.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 08:21 PM
If you don't believe me look at the bloody facts in front of you.


We have no plan, no follow on, continuous kicking of the can down the road and lack of direction, even mis-direction by the WH, and now even fragmenting congressional support compounded with upcoming MAJOR proposed budget cuts to the agency.


Your watching the future of your space program die in front of you due to stupid partisan politics. Ask yourselves if your going to stand for it or not and then, as robot suggested do something about it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: PoliSpace on 07/12/2011 08:24 PM
Guys,

   I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com   But having run lots of these hearings, I have to say it's about what I expected to see.  A lot of Members who "like" space trying to show they care, but without doing the hard work required to actually solve the problem.  Since Members have to choose among solving 500 such issues, it's no wonder they fall back to empathy and table-thumping. 

   But all of this "oh my God... Charlie said SLS won't carry humans until after 2020"... THIS is news to you?  It wasn't news to Augustine or NASA.  Unless you throw a lot more money at SLS, money which NASA clearly is not going to have -- note for reference that Chairman Wolf plussed up the SLS budget because he LIKES SLS, but he still couldn't fund it more than the FY2012 budget without slashing other things.  And he only got it $180m more.  It needed a billion+ more.  Year after year. 

   The only thing sillier than the surprise that the program DOESN'T FIT in the budget and schedule mandate of the Authorization Act -- it turns out Pi does not equal 3, no matter what Senators claim -- is the notion that Charlie is only saying this because OMB or some other evil White House folks told him to. 

   NO.  These are the numbers.  If NASA's team disgorged a plan that could launch Orion with people by 2015, it would get leaked out.  Mr. Bergrin has already demonstrated his ability to extract this kind of info from the bureaucracy.  But it hasn't.  The best case was launching crew in late 2017, and that's if they got the AUTHORIZATION runout.  Which of course the APPROPRIATORS are ignoring.  Because they can. 

    Perhaps the White House and Congress will come to a debt deal. Perhaps the constraints on domestic discretionary spending will be lifted somewhat.  Perhaps NASA can have the 2010 budget instead of the 2008 budget.  I don't know. 

    But failing a miracle, NASA will not get as much money as the Authorizers hoped, which means SLS won't arrive as early as they hoped.  This has nothing to do with OMB's or anyone's opinions about SLS... it's just math.  If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users... since no other users exist. 

    NASA-unique launchers will expend the budget sooner than other alternatives, and I see no evidence that they cause the budget to be increased in the first place. 

    Finally, unless you don't care whether exploration missions ever actually happen -- because you're, say, an SLS contractor -- I don't see how you wouldn't want some independent validation that the whole architecture Charlie has just chosen will actually fit into some sort of realistic budget.  Because if it doesn't, then we never get there.  Maybe we finish developing SLS, but we can't afford to fly it very often.  So we don't get to actually explore.

    Which was the whole point, right? 


 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 08:26 PM
What the General did say is “we have to get out owning and operating low earth orbit transportation” (19:10) With no specific destination and timeline, any SLS program is going to be nothing more than a test and development program, which can be discontinued at any time… another  Ares 1-X??  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again… SLS will be seen as not needed and too expensive, commercial launchers are up and operating. Then NASA will say in a couple of years “We have to get out owning and operating space transportation period. See they can do LEO so why not let them do BEO?” I don’t agree with it, but it seems to be unfolding as I have believed for a couple of years now.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 08:26 PM
Honestly I am furious about what I saw today on the Hill and I am even more furious that some people cannot seem to recognize what is very clearly going on right in front of them or recognize the bigger picture in all of this. At the same time I am heartbroken watching our STS workforce doing the best they can to finish strong admist all this bullsh#@%!!


I am taking a break from this forum for about a week. I suggest if you care about your country one iota you contact your respective representatives about this issue and try to get them to see reason.

1. Do not cut NASA's budget
2. Make sure NASA does its bloody job and gets critical design decision reports made and issued on schedule instead of playing "puppet to the president" or whatever it is that's going on.



I honestly cannot stand to follow this anymore it makes me sick. Be back in one week.

FF
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jkumpire on 07/12/2011 08:27 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 08:27 PM
continuous kicking of the can down the road and lack of direction

That is exactly right.  And look at how Obama has been unwilling to kick the can down the road on issues he does believe in.  His willingness to do so here is a clear indication that he does not believe in human space exploration and is content to substitute visions of "maybe someday" for any real, concrete, near-term plan.

Quote
...even mis-direction by the WH, and now even fragmenting congressional support compounded with upcoming MAJOR proposed budget cuts to the agency.


Your watching the future of your space program die in front of you due to stupid partisan politics. Ask yourselves if your going to stand for it or not and then, as robot suggested do something about it.

This issue more than any other (though I'm no fan of the crap healthcare bill) has made me regret my vote for Obama.  Kennedy he certainly is not.

Is this really the same nation that achieved the goals of Apollo in under a decade?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 08:35 PM
....If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users... since no other users exist. 

    NASA-unique launchers will expend the budget sooner than other alternatives, and I see no evidence that they cause the budget to be increased in the first place. 

    Finally, unless you don't care whether exploration missions ever actually happen -- because you're, say, an SLS contractor -- I don't see how you wouldn't want some independent validation that the whole architecture Charlie has just chosen will actually fit into some sort of realistic budget.  Because if it doesn't, then we never get there.  Maybe we finish developing SLS, but we can't afford to fly it very often.  So we don't get to actually explore.

    Which was the whole point, right? 


Then perhaps, as someone who has run many of these meetings, you can start to ask the appropriate questions of NASA or Members that seemingly go unanswered, such as what are the mission scope(s), architecture(s), destination(s) and time table(s) with an SLS-class launcher (whatever it is) and without an SLS-class launcher and which provides the LOWEST TOTAL INTEGRATED MISSION COST.  After all, that's the whole point, right? 

Instead it seems you also default to an "SLS contractor" snipe, who do not even exist and seem to imply that "SLS infrastructure" is somehow unique to the universe and various primes and sub-tiers do not serve other purposes as well, and with their elimination, would not mean financial burden shifted elsewhere. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 08:36 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.

Sorry, but no, thats not the correct history.  I can see I may have to repost the actual history of Obama and spaceflight a 3rd time, although I'd really rather not do it.  Short version - Obama is not out to destroy human spaceflight, and never said anything close to that.  Go here to read what actually happened (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=25884.msg772641#msg772641)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: ArbitraryConstant on 07/12/2011 08:39 PM
it turns out Pi does not equal 3, no matter what Senators claim
Well put.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mr. mark on 07/12/2011 08:39 PM
Kennedy was a visionary as well as his brother Bobby. They used government as a tool to achieve specific goals. The only other visionary of the modern era was Ronald Reagan who dreamed of cutting government excess to promote private industry. Both accomplished their goals to some extent. In a way, the new NASA HLV is an end product of the Kennedy era and Commercial Spacex and Orbital ect. is the ongoing evolution of the 80's Reagan philosophy.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 08:39 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.

Sorry, but no, thats not the correct history.  I can see I may have to repost the actual history of Obama and spaceflight a 3rd time, although I'd really rather not do it.  Short version - Obama is not out to destroy human spaceflight, and never said anything close to that.  Go here to read what actually happened (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=25884.msg772641#msg772641)



Those are all things he said. He has done the exact opposite and even said the exact opposite since then. That was merely to buy votes.


Sorry but actions speak far louder than words, and the actions thus far are of someone who is out to do and get what he wants personally not to help anyone or anything else


You can post all the words you want but the man's actions paint an entirely different and unpleasant picture.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jagmaster on 07/12/2011 08:40 PM
Guys,

   I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com   But having run lots of these hearings, I have to say it's about what I expected to see.  A lot of Members who "like" space trying to show they care, but without doing the hard work required to actually solve the problem.  Since Members have to choose among solving 500 such issues, it's no wonder they fall back to empathy and table-thumping. 

   But all of this "oh my God... Charlie said SLS won't carry humans until after 2020"... THIS is news to you?  It wasn't news to Augustine or NASA.  Unless you throw a lot more money at SLS, money which NASA clearly is not going to have -- note for reference that Chairman Wolf plussed up the SLS budget because he LIKES SLS, but he still couldn't fund it more than the FY2012 budget without slashing other things.  And he only got it $180m more.  It needed a billion+ more.  Year after year. 

   The only thing sillier than the surprise that the program DOESN'T FIT in the budget and schedule mandate of the Authorization Act -- it turns out Pi does not equal 3, no matter what Senators claim -- is the notion that Charlie is only saying this because OMB or some other evil White House folks told him to. 

   NO.  These are the numbers.  If NASA's team disgorged a plan that could launch Orion with people by 2015, it would get leaked out.  Mr. Bergrin has already demonstrated his ability to extract this kind of info from the bureaucracy.  But it hasn't.  The best case was launching crew in late 2017, and that's if they got the AUTHORIZATION runout.  Which of course the APPROPRIATORS are ignoring.  Because they can. 

    Perhaps the White House and Congress will come to a debt deal. Perhaps the constraints on domestic discretionary spending will be lifted somewhat.  Perhaps NASA can have the 2010 budget instead of the 2008 budget.  I don't know. 

    But failing a miracle, NASA will not get as much money as the Authorizers hoped, which means SLS won't arrive as early as they hoped.  This has nothing to do with OMB's or anyone's opinions about SLS... it's just math.  If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users... since no other users exist. 

    NASA-unique launchers will expend the budget sooner than other alternatives, and I see no evidence that they cause the budget to be increased in the first place. 

    Finally, unless you don't care whether exploration missions ever actually happen -- because you're, say, an SLS contractor -- I don't see how you wouldn't want some independent validation that the whole architecture Charlie has just chosen will actually fit into some sort of realistic budget.  Because if it doesn't, then we never get there.  Maybe we finish developing SLS, but we can't afford to fly it very often.  So we don't get to actually explore.

    Which was the whole point, right? 


 


Completely agree.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 08:41 PM
Kennedy was a visionary as well as his brother Bobby. They used government as a tool to achieve specific goals. The only other visionary of the modern era was Ronald Reagan who dreamed of cutting government excess to promote private industry. Both accomplished their goals to some extent. In a way, the new NASA HLV is an end product of the Kennedy era and Commercial Spacex and Orbital ect. is the ongoing evolution of the 80's Reagan philosophy.

In case you didn't here there is no new NASA HLV now, we are effectively in the same place as we were with CXP: No human lift capability until 2020. 


Mind you if commercial crew is ready sooner that would be great, but oh wait I forgot the House wants to cut that.


So we are left with nothing. Sicking.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 08:42 PM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

Sorry, but we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jim on 07/12/2011 08:42 PM
which provides the LOWEST TOTAL INTEGRATED MISSION COST. 

It is a given.  Non SDLV.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 08:44 PM
Guys,

   I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com   But having run lots of these hearings, I have to say it's about what I expected to see.  A lot of Members who "like" space trying to show they care, but without doing the hard work required to actually solve the problem.  Since Members have to choose among solving 500 such issues, it's no wonder they fall back to empathy and table-thumping. 

   But all of this "oh my God... Charlie said SLS won't carry humans until after 2020"... THIS is news to you?  It wasn't news to Augustine or NASA.  Unless you throw a lot more money at SLS, money which NASA clearly is not going to have -- note for reference that Chairman Wolf plussed up the SLS budget because he LIKES SLS, but he still couldn't fund it more than the FY2012 budget without slashing other things.  And he only got it $180m more.  It needed a billion+ more.  Year after year. 

   The only thing sillier than the surprise that the program DOESN'T FIT in the budget and schedule mandate of the Authorization Act -- it turns out Pi does not equal 3, no matter what Senators claim -- is the notion that Charlie is only saying this because OMB or some other evil White House folks told him to. 

   NO.  These are the numbers.  If NASA's team disgorged a plan that could launch Orion with people by 2015, it would get leaked out.  Mr. Bergrin has already demonstrated his ability to extract this kind of info from the bureaucracy.  But it hasn't.  The best case was launching crew in late 2017, and that's if they got the AUTHORIZATION runout.  Which of course the APPROPRIATORS are ignoring.  Because they can. 

    Perhaps the White House and Congress will come to a debt deal. Perhaps the constraints on domestic discretionary spending will be lifted somewhat.  Perhaps NASA can have the 2010 budget instead of the 2008 budget.  I don't know. 

    But failing a miracle, NASA will not get as much money as the Authorizers hoped, which means SLS won't arrive as early as they hoped.  This has nothing to do with OMB's or anyone's opinions about SLS... it's just math.  If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users... since no other users exist. 

    NASA-unique launchers will expend the budget sooner than other alternatives, and I see no evidence that they cause the budget to be increased in the first place. 

    Finally, unless you don't care whether exploration missions ever actually happen -- because you're, say, an SLS contractor -- I don't see how you wouldn't want some independent validation that the whole architecture Charlie has just chosen will actually fit into some sort of realistic budget.  Because if it doesn't, then we never get there.  Maybe we finish developing SLS, but we can't afford to fly it very often.  So we don't get to actually explore.

    Which was the whole point, right? 
Hell of a first post.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 08:49 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.

Sorry, but no, thats not the correct history.  I can see I may have to repost the actual history of Obama and spaceflight a 3rd time, although I'd really rather not do it.  Short version - Obama is not out to destroy human spaceflight, and never said anything close to that.  Go here to read what actually happened (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=25884.msg772641#msg772641)



Those are all things he said. He has done the exact opposite and even said the exact opposite since then. That was merely to buy votes.


Sorry but actions speak far louder than words, and the actions thus far are of someone who is out to do and get what he wants personally not to help anyone or anything else


You can post all the words you want but the man's actions paint an entirely different and unpleasant picture.

Well
1.  I was posting that to counter the claim that he had simply flip-flopped on extremes.  I am deadly tired of hearing that.  Now, no doubt someone will tell me that all of that is a smokescreen.  Sorry, I don't buy that.
2.  I disagree that his actions have done the exact opposite.  And I'd love to see what you claim is saying the exact opposite. 
3.  I fundamentally disagree that he doesn't want to help anyone get there.  My read of things like the FY 2012 budget, FY 2011 budget, and the Augustine committee, at a minimum, is to try and turn space into a viable industry sector, not dependent upon just getting money from the government.

You don't agree.  Guess what, I am not surprised.  My only real surprise is I thought you were leaving for a week. 

But IMHO, NASA needs to get out of the space launch business, and I fundamentally think that most of the Shuttle Derived solutions are going to destroy NASA.  Finally, contrary to claims, that the proposed R&D isn't undirected, but it isn't so directed that it precludes a broader utilization. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 08:50 PM
Sorry, but no, thats not the correct history.  I can see I may have to repost the actual history of Obama and spaceflight a 3rd time, although I'd really rather not do it.  Short version - Obama is not out to destroy human spaceflight, and never said anything close to that.  Go here to read what actually happened (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=25884.msg772641#msg772641)

Sorry A_Polispace but there's little use arguing right now.

Many people are currently in the anger state, after having passed through shock and denial. Throwing around wild accusations and conspiracy theories is to be expected.

Eventually, once they reach the acceptance stage, rational arguments will again carry the day.

I think the idea of taking a "time out" is a good one.

I thought we were through the arguing stage.  Oh well. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 08:53 PM
If it's a question of funding ISS/commercial LEO transport or real exploration beyond LEO, I'd sooner scrap the former so that we can start doing something worthwhile again!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: RocketEconomist327 on 07/12/2011 08:54 PM
Now you have been exposed for who and what you are.
As we see you.  You are a NASA contractor who is looking for a new line of work who may or may not be laid off.  The NASA industrial complex you hoped would last forever is collapsing.

Quote from: OV-106
I am hardly the "only NASA" crowd.  If you cannot see the complexities at work here and by default this is then what you believe, I suggest you re-examine your interests of "economics, politics and humanity in space".  You could also easily review my post history, or just the general posts that I know you have seen shortly after they are made.
As you could review mine.  I assure you I see the complexity and I see the nuance; I also see the wasteful spending and burdensome regulation.   

Quote from: OV-106
The fact that you continue to see the current situation as "CCDev versus MPCV/SLS" is nothing but sad given the time you have spent here, and elsewhere, and if you are informed as you believe you are.  Instead you default to "Apollo infrastructure" which shows your lack of knowledge.
When programs that actually work and are on budget, such as COTS, CCDev, and CRuSR get raped while Constellation gets a name change and funding boost, I would say the lines are clearly drawn.  If you choose not to see them, that is your choice, not mine. 

When I see the cost difference between MPCV/SLS and CCDev it is evidently clear what is working and what is not.  Economics do not lie.

Do I really need the VAB and LC-39 to put Americans into space?  No, I do not. 

Do I really need Houston controlling?  No, I do not.

Quote from: OV-106
The fact you totally ignore my recommendation, to perhaps once and for all prove you and others right or wrong and perhaps raise the signal-to-noise ratio around here, was totally ignored in this post in favor for a cheap and sorry personal attack that is not even accurate in the slightest.  It is a trend for you and others that I hope other users note.
Anyone who even casually reviews your post history knows just how rude you are.  There was no personal attack. 

The signal to noise ratio is only raised by those who need to defend multi-billion dollar expenditures and have nothing to show for it... like Orion and SLS.  I am sorry, I don't want PowerPoints and status updates, I want flights.  I get that with COTS and I see progress with CCDev.  CRuSR is amazing and its getting killed to feed the fat pig that is SLS.

Quote from: OV-106
I will end with I do not seem to recall, and neither does history it seem, any human "exploration" with Delta and Atlas, which are just rockets in the first place.
And I will close that ULA has done much of the work to "man rate" their vehicles.  Moreover, Falcon 9 has been designed from the beginning to carry humans.  There are many educated people who I have spoken with who have said Atlas could be ready well before SLS even dreams of rolling out of a 40+ year old building on a crawler just as old.

These are the death rolls of an aging decrepit organization unable to evolve.  Not because NASA cannot, because NASA will not.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 08:58 PM
When programs that actually work and are on budget, such as COTS, CCDev, and CRuSR get raped while Constellation gets a name change and funding boost, I would say the lines are clearly drawn. 

If COTS is on schedule and budget, then why are we still waiting for Dragon and Cygnus flights that should have happened by now?  Does anyone really expect the more challenging commercial crew vehicles to be remotely near on-time and on-budget when even the comparatively simple unmanned craft aren't?

Besides, COTS and CCDev are going to keep us stuck in LEO for another decade or more.  To borrow Obama's words, let me say this bluntly, we've been there before.  One of the main outcomes of the post-Columbia evaluation was a realization that it's time to stop going in circles in LEO.  Dr. Griffin is correct that this is shaping up to be a lost decade. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/12/2011 09:02 PM
I really don't have the words to express just how ridiculous this has become.

NASA's technical staff are more than capable of making a basic SDLV fully operational (manned) in less than 6 years.   If the Admin is saying 9 years, then someone is putting more than a finger on the scales (wow, we've never seen that before!).

I call bullsh*t.

NASA spent over five years just getting to PDR with Ares-I.  While a less-flawed design might have been quicker, I highly doubt that NASA really can get an operational new launch vehicle ready that quick anymore, especially on the budget they have and with the management they have. It's just an opinion on my part, but I think that it's not an unreasonable supposition.  As even OV has said several times, MSFC has to prove it can actually successfully execute on launch vehicle development.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/12/2011 09:02 PM
And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 

No, it was not.  It used Augustine as a general jumping-off point, but it was not any of the Augustine options and made less sense than any of them.  Case in point:  Orion was cancelled.  The entire Augustine panel was blindsided by that development, and said so.

Also, Augustine strongly recommended a budget boost, and we know what happened there; FY2011 didn't even advance enough to cover inflation...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 09:04 PM
If it's a question of funding ISS/commercial LEO transport or real exploration beyond LEO, I'd sooner scrap the former so that we can start doing something worthwhile again!

See, the problem is that won't fly in a lot of places.  In essence, you are saying that you are willing to drop the just completed ISS, after we spent something on the order of $100 Billion dollars.  That is guaranteed to get you laughed out of town when you make that claim to people who have been out of work for months, and are barely making ends meet.  (And yes, I know its been hard for the Space coast and elsewhere - come up to michigan, and we've been living that for years).  So, to say "screw ISS" doesn't help your credibility. 

Further, the whole point - if we succeed in commercializing HSF in LEO, then we'll be able to do sustained BEO, and we'll never have another situation like Apollo, where we leave the field. 

We need to be moving in the direction of always commercializing every place we get to asap.  Thats how we'll colonize space
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 09:05 PM
which provides the LOWEST TOTAL INTEGRATED MISSION COST. 

It is a given.  Non SDLV.

Then show me the comparison.  That would mean you have mission scope(s), architecture(s), destination(s) and time table(s) for both.  Until you have that, you cannot make such claims.

As I have said more than once, I am perfectly willing to go whatever way makes the most sense if the goals (again, whatever they are) can be achieved for less per mission. 

I am willing to ask and demand those questions be answered.  I have been saying they need to be answered for a long time, because if we do need an HLV to minimize per mission cost, it makes sense to use what we have now.  I simply do not understand why that question and potential answer is such a threat to some who insist they have the answer without asking the question. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Andrewwski on 07/12/2011 09:07 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.

Those are awfully strong accusations.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: ArbitraryConstant on 07/12/2011 09:08 PM
Does anyone really expect the more challenging commercial crew vehicles to be remotely near on-time and on-budget when even the comparatively simple unmanned craft aren't?
Perhaps not.

But even with large delays and overruns CCDev still looks damn good in comparison.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 09:09 PM
And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 

No, it was not.  It used Augustine as a general jumping-off point, but it was not any of the Augustine options and made less sense than any of them.  Case in point:  Orion was cancelled.  The entire Augustine panel was blindsided by that development, and said so.

Also, Augustine strongly recommended a budget boost, and we know what happened there; FY2011 didn't even advance enough to cover inflation...

FY 2011 was about 80-90% of the Commercial Heavy Lift, and Flexible path plan, with some modifications added, to see if we can squeeze the size of the smallest largest piece before we start building a Super Big rocket.  It did substantial investment in R&D, something Augustine talked about.  It went to the commercial to ISS path. 

Yes, it wasn't entirely Augustine, but about 80-90% of it was Augustine. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 09:10 PM
As we see you. 

You are a incorrect.  You are now claiming to know what I "want".  I am quite comfortable with who I am and what I stand for.  I will let others judge me on the merits of my posts and comments and compare them to yours.  I'm confident in the outcome. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/12/2011 09:10 PM
I am willing to ask and demand those questions be answered.  I have been saying they need to be answered for a long time, because if we do need an HLV to minimize per mission cost, it makes sense to use what we have now.  I simply do not understand why that question and potential answer is such a threat to some who insist they have the answer without asking the question.

It certainly makes sense to use what we have now. But if we have two systems, one that spreads its fixed costs over a handful of customers, and one that concentrates very high fixed costs solely on NASA, which would be logical to use?

I will let others judge me on the merits of my posts and comments and compare them to yours.  I'm confident in the outcome.

The outcome for me is the opposite of what you expect.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 09:11 PM
It seems a bit ridiculous for them to come out and say that there will not be manned missions before 2020 when the law clearly states that this is to begin in 2016.  Even if there is no foul play afoot there should be an investigation as to why NASA suddenly needs 4 more years to do their job.

Now you hit upon the fine point of todays hearing.   Bolden and his team broke the law regarding use of the Orion, as mandated by the law signed in.
 
Point by point this was gone over.  The Orion was to be as a backup to the ISS if the Commercial failed.   Todays news is that Orion might not be working until 2020 and time to use for ISS.
 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 09:11 PM
There was something to the SpaceX geewizardry announcements and promo videos of BEO missions to Mars a couple of months ago. It helps to steer the discourse away from SLS MPCV and NASA being any source of future excitement…
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 09:13 PM
When programs that actually work and are on budget, such as COTS, CCDev, and CRuSR get raped while Constellation gets a name change and funding boost, I would say the lines are clearly drawn. 

If COTS is on schedule and budget, then why are we still waiting for Dragon and Cygnus flights that should have happened by now?  Does anyone really expect the more challenging commercial crew vehicles to be remotely near on-time and on-budget when even the comparatively simple unmanned craft aren't?

Besides, COTS and CCDev are going to keep us stuck in LEO for another decade or more.  To borrow Obama's words, let me say this bluntly, we've been there before.  One of the main outcomes of the post-Columbia evaluation was a realization that it's time to stop going in circles in LEO.  Dr. Griffin is correct that this is shaping up to be a lost decade. 

They've been on budget as far as the taxpayer has been concerned. 

As for delivering a vehicle on time - I am entirely optimistic that Boeing & SpaceX can deliver close to on time & on budget.  I have less data about the other 2, so I'll withhold judgment until later.  But, given that we are largely just talking about the need to do spacecraft, and not spacecraft and rockets, I think the odds are better
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Arthur on 07/12/2011 09:14 PM
    Finally, unless you don't care whether exploration missions ever actually happen -- because you're, say, an SLS contractor -- I don't see how you wouldn't want some independent validation that the whole architecture Charlie has just chosen will actually fit into some sort of realistic budget.
While I generally liked your comments on the timeline being cost driven ...

Direct generated a SDLV budget.
The Augustine Commission reviewed the Direct Budget.
Boeing created a nearly identical budget for their SDLV.
Congress mandated a SDLV.

How much uncertainty can there be about the costs?
Enough to justify delaying critical decisions?

I work in Commercial Land Development. Except right now there isn't much commercial development going on. The problem in my industry is falling prices and excess inventory. The primary cause is a lack of consumer confidence, due to general employment insecurity. The only cure for the construction industry is to wait it out. Employment will pick up eventually and employed people will spend money and new business will open to sell them things and new stores will eventually be needed. It is an unavoidable and painful process.

It amazes me that NASA would willingly create such a perfect storm of hardship within the aerospace industry when it is unnecessary. There is no glut of rockets and no excess workforce that needs to transition to other fields. There is simply an artificial delay which will inflict unnecessary hardship on the workforce, generate a counter-productive loss of worker confidence in the industry, and ultimately NASA will need to build and operate SOMETHING.

No, Mr PoliSpace, continued delay while yet another independent cost analysis is conducted is NOT what I want (and I am not even in the aerospace industry).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: tnphysics on 07/12/2011 09:15 PM
I believe when she says paraffin they mean biofuel. Paraffin for the Brits means something else. Chris can correct this for me :)
Regards
Robert
http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/paraffin?region=us


Paraffin=any saturated hydrocarbon.

This includes most of RP-1
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 09:17 PM
I am willing to ask and demand those questions be answered.  I have been saying they need to be answered for a long time, because if we do need an HLV to minimize per mission cost, it makes sense to use what we have now.  I simply do not understand why that question and potential answer is such a threat to some who insist they have the answer without asking the question.

It certainly makes sense to use what we have now. But if we have two systems, one that spreads its fixed costs over a handful of customers, and one that concentrates very high fixed costs solely on NASA, which would be logical to use?

I will let others judge me on the merits of my posts and comments and compare them to yours.  I'm confident in the outcome.

The outcome for me is the opposite of what you expect.

Well, you are the one who goes around claiming I wish commercial to "fail", so it is not the opposite of what I expect.  I guess you are wrong again.  Sorry.

For the first part of your question you assume there is no consequence to other agencies, etc through subtiers, etc.  That would be incorrect assumption based on an ideal world that does not exist. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 09:19 PM
I believe when she says paraffin they mean biofuel. Paraffin for the Brits means something else. Chris can correct this for me :)
Regards
Robert
http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/paraffin?region=us


Paraffin=any saturated hydrocarbon.

This includes most of RP-1
Yup, I agree... I think she is thinking alternative energy like biofuel. See my later post.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/12/2011 09:19 PM
You know, the proposed Appropriations bill doesn't fund SLS/MPCV at nearly the amounts authorized for 2012.  It's better than the President's FY2012 request (in this one area), but that's not saying much.

Could Bolden be attempting to emphasize that cutting NASA is a bad idea?  Whether or not Chicago-style politics are involved, it seems like a great opportunity for that sort of thing, and it did sound like he was trying to get that across...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robert Thompson on 07/12/2011 09:20 PM
Can someone flesh out the difference between an Orion that can re-enter from LEO/ISS and an Orion that can re-enter from BEO? Is the difference the mass of the heat shield and parachutes? Propulsion to decelerate from escape velocity?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jkumpire on 07/12/2011 09:21 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.

Those are awfully strong accusations.

I am not sure they are strong accusations, That's how I see all this playing out. And that is how I see the direction of the Administration. And in spite of the fact that they sent up to the House budget number X, what is in it says they support ISS, commercial, and some non-manned projects. The rest is 'research' without a real purpose.

APolispace, sorry I don't buy your view. I've read that statement before, more than once, and it is a different version of reality from what I see.

The whole point in this discussion is clear, after Augustine the Administration brought out a blueprint for what it wanted in HSF and NASA in the future. That blueprint was rejected by the Congress, and the President signed on to the bill that in essence overturned his proposal.

But the senior NASA leadership is acting like the law that was passed never existed. By what they are doing now they show what they want to do. They want Mr. Obama's 2008 election campaign vision fulfilled, and they want the 2010 post-Augustine proposal as their blueprint.

Please show how this is not the case by analyzing their actions.     
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: JMS on 07/12/2011 09:22 PM
If it's a question of funding ISS/commercial LEO transport or real exploration beyond LEO, I'd sooner scrap the former so that we can start doing something worthwhile again!

And continue the legacy of developing... at massive expense, and throwing away. That will certainly change the public perception that NASA is a wasteful bureaucracy.


If COTS is on schedule and budget, then why are we still waiting for Dragon and Cygnus flights that should have happened by now?   

Surely you can see the importance of getting the next COTS mission done right. Makes prudent sense that, this next flight (or two if not combined) is not going to be fast tracked, or should be.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: EE Scott on 07/12/2011 09:23 PM
For me two big deals to come out of this was the admission that 1) the approved SLS design is basically an SD-HLV using ATK solid boosters (with possible competition for said boosters in the evolved SLS - who knows when/if that would ever happen), and 2) they have ignored the 2016/17 deadline for an operational 70-ton LV.

So point blank, wrt #2 above, Admin. Bolden basically said the Senate Compromise language does not work for NASA; NASA will not be working toward that deadline, or anything close.  And let me ask -- what response did this information illicit from the Committee?  Outrage?  Disappointment?

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 09:31 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.

Those are awfully strong accusations.

I am not sure they are strong accusations, That's how I see all this playing out. And that is how I see the direction of the Administration. And in spite of the fact that they sent up to the House budget number X, what is in it says they support ISS, commercial, and some non-manned projects. The rest is 'research' without a real purpose.

APolispace, sorry I don't buy your view. I've read that statement before, more than once, and it is a different version of reality from what I see.

The whole point in this discussion is clear, after Augustine the Administration brought out a blueprint for what it wanted in HSF and NASA in the future. That blueprint was rejected by the Congress, and the President signed on to the bill that in essence overturned his proposal.

But the senior NASA leadership is acting like the law that was passed never existed. By what they are doing now they show what they want to do. They want Mr. Obama's 2008 election campaign vision fulfilled, and they want the 2010 post-Augustine proposal as their blueprint.

Please show how this is not the case by analyzing their actions.     

You are welcome to your interpenetration of the facts.  But I don't see it, and I would at least ask that you not repeat the claim that it was the brazen flip-flop (the Florida speech)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Will on 07/12/2011 09:32 PM
For me two big deals to come out of this was the admission that 1) the approved SLS design is basically an SD-HLV using ATK solid boosters (with possible competition for said boosters in the evolved SLS - who knows when/if that would ever happen), and 2) they have ignored the 2016/17 deadline for an operational 70-ton LV.

So point blank, wrt #2 above, Admin. Bolden basically said the Senate Compromise language does not work for NASA; NASA will not be working toward that deadline, or anything close.  And let me ask -- what response did this information illicit from the Committee?  Outrage?  Disappointment?



The Senate has directed NASA to get a quart into a pint pot and NASA has informed them that they can't get a quart into a pint pot.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 09:34 PM
You know, the proposed Appropriations bill doesn't fund SLS/MPCV at nearly the amounts authorized for 2012.  It's better than the President's FY2012 request (in this one area), but that's not saying much.

Could Bolden be attempting to emphasize that cutting NASA is a bad idea?  Whether or not Chicago-style politics are involved, it seems like a great opportunity for that sort of thing, and it did sound like he was trying to get that across...

Bolden was talking to them as a Politician. While Congress was giving out a message so was Bolden.   

Mrs. Jackson Lee, Houston   she is not happy that Houston didn’t get a shuttle for display and asked the general the question.  He said “ I can’t answer you on this”

Translation:  I can’t do anything about it

Some “I could be home with my grandkids, but love my family”    Translation:  I have to stick around and try and keep the administration from killing off NASA. 

He sent a message at the end about Obama   “that Obama was one of the few presidents he has seen to take an interest in NASA”

Translation:  The White House and Admin is micro managing everything I do, and what goes on at NASA.



Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: renclod on 07/12/2011 09:34 PM
Can someone flesh out the difference between an Orion that can re-enter from LEO/ISS and an Orion that can re-enter from BEO? Is the difference the mass of the heat shield and parachutes? Propulsion to decelerate from escape velocity?

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=25939.0

"
• For NEO missions, heating from shock layer radiation dominates both heat rate and heat load

• Radiative heating uncertainty/margin is larger than convective heating uncertainty/margin, and will have a large mass impact on a heatshield sized for a NEO mission "


Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: EE Scott on 07/12/2011 09:39 PM
For me two big deals to come out of this was the admission that 1) the approved SLS design is basically an SD-HLV using ATK solid boosters (with possible competition for said boosters in the evolved SLS - who knows when/if that would ever happen), and 2) they have ignored the 2016/17 deadline for an operational 70-ton LV.

So point blank, wrt #2 above, Admin. Bolden basically said the Senate Compromise language does not work for NASA; NASA will not be working toward that deadline, or anything close.  And let me ask -- what response did this information illicit from the Committee?  Outrage?  Disappointment?



The Senate has directed NASA to get a quart into a pint pot and NASA has informed them that they can't get a quart into a pint pot.

I agree that the Senate language does direct NASA to put ten pounds of, er, suger, into a five pound bag.  My problem with NASA is they are not being explicit about it (to the extent I would like to hear/see), and just calling a spade a spade.  If NASA believes that SLS is not doable within a certain prescribed budget and/or timeframe, they need to advocate for 1) a better budget, or 2) a different solution.  That's what I'd like to see instead of the current game being played.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/12/2011 09:39 PM
NASA can't won't deliver manned space until sometime around or after 2020.

There, fixed that for ya. The fact of the matter is that with the existing budget available to NASA a Jupiter-130 "ish" SLS could be in the air in 5-6 years. We have talked to all the major contractors already. We have run all the budget numbers – countless times. The Augustine Commission, thru the analysis provided by the Aerospace Corp, validated all the budgetary numbers we provided. There absolutely is no justifiable reason why Orion cannot be flying on the SLS by 2016 barring deliberate choice to delay to that date (which is a legal thing to do).

This entire issue has been clouded with so much emotion, crap and horsesh*t that it's no wonder so few can see what's going on. If we had not already developed our inside sources back in the DIRECT days even we would not be able to say with certainty what's going on. But thankfully we did and we can and this is what's going on:

It is almost exactly as Final Frontier has stated wrt the Chicago-style politics. The end of US Government-based HSF is being orchestrated from the White House. The OMB is being used as the enforcer in much the same way as Jerry the Bat was used in other days by Chicago family members. Bolden and Garver are the designated prophets of the brave new world of Commercial Space but they have been told to function by subterfuge and misdirection. Now that may be immoral by some standards but that is *NOT* illegal. Administrations have worked the Congress over in this manner for a very long time in order to get their own way and Bolden and Garver do work for the Administration.

Some of you believe that is the way we should go (all commercial) and some of you do not. I count myself among the later because I personally do not believe that American HSF should be held hostage to the wellbeing of the shareholder. National interests should not be considered a profit center. But that's beside the point and off topic so I won't go there.

I believe, as does Ross, that we are witnessing the beginning of the end of NASA as we have known it for over 50 years, UNLESS the leaders in Congress grow some balls. If they did, this then is what should happen next:

But before I say it let me be clear that this is what should happen in *ANY* similar confrontation between the executive and the legislative, NOT just this specific SLS debate. This will very likely become a Constitutional crisis unless Bolden complies or Congress caves.

Because the law already exists, signed by the President, and Bolden has clearly not complied with the law, he *AND* his deputy Garver should be summoned to appear before Congress via subpoena specifically to deliver to the committee the SLS selection that he made in June that was to have been the subject of today's hearing. Their presence should be compelled by escort if necessary. Upon the opening of the hearing, Bolden should be asked if he has the SLS configuration with him to present to the committee. If he does, all is well and the crisis is averted. If he does not, then he should be asked no further questions and he should be *immediately* placed in custody and held for a Contempt of Congress hearing, to be scheduled at a later date. He should be informed that he will remain in custody until such time as the hearing is conducted. If that happens, then Garver should be called next to testimony and asked the same question. If she does not produce the documents then she should also be immediately placed in custody with the same conditions. Before the hearing is adjourned, the 3rd and 4th persons beneath Bolden and Garver should be identified as leadership next in line and the committee should cause them to be similarly subpoenaed for a hearing to be scheduled within 10 days, at which time they will be given the same opportunity to comply, with the same consequences threatened for non-compliance. This should continue down the chain of command until either the White House or Congress caves or some accommodation acceptable to both is reached.

Like I said, this is what should happen when one party (the President) has brought about a Constitutional crisis, which he has by causing the Administrator, thru his OMB enforcers, to be instructed to stall – again. This same procedure should be executed in any such Constitutional crisis, regardless of the names of the players or the issue at hand. That is the way the framers of the Constitution wrote the procedures. It remains to be seen whether or not the current members of Congress have the balls to do it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: ArbitraryConstant on 07/12/2011 09:39 PM
Besides, COTS and CCDev are going to keep us stuck in LEO for another decade or more.
COTS and CCDev don't do that, a severely reduced budget does that. CCDev merely offers the hope that we will be in LEO instead of on the ground.

The problem I see going forward is that requiring SLS in particular and HLV in general creates unmet, and potentially unmeetable dependencies for further exploration. There are drawbacks to smaller launch sizes, but I have to question whether the HLV route is any better when the consistent outcome has been for delays and budget overruns to lead to cancellation, with no "gratification" (successes that inspire the public and ultimately reinforce NASA's budget) for the money spent.

As for delivering a vehicle on time - I am entirely optimistic that Boeing & SpaceX can deliver close to on time & on budget.
Even if they can't - and we must entertain this possibility if we are to engage honestly in this discussion - the funds required are relatively small even so, and neither is burdened with the requirement for a new launcher.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 09:51 PM
NASA can't won't deliver manned space until sometime around or after 2020.

There, fixed that for ya. The fact of the matter is that with the existing budget available to NASA a Jupiter-130 "ish" SLS could be in the air in 5-6 years. We have talked to all the major contractors already. We have run all the budget numbers – countless times. The Augustine Commission, thru the analysis provided by the Aerospace Corp, validated all the budgetary numbers we provided. There absolutely is no justifiable reason why Orion cannot be flying on the SLS by 2016 barring deliberate choice to delay to that date (which is a legal thing to do).

This entire issue has been clouded with so much emotion, crap and horsesh*t that it's no wonder so few can see what's going on. If we had not already developed our inside sources back in the DIRECT days even we would not be able to say with certainty what's going on. But thankfully we did and we can and this is what's going on:

It is almost exactly as Final Frontier has stated wrt the Chicago-style politics. The end of US Government-based HSF is being orchestrated from the White House. The OMB is being used as the enforcer in much the same way as Jerry the Bat was used in other days by Chicago family members. Bolden and Garver are the designated prophets of the brave new world of Commercial Space but they have been told to function by subterfuge and misdirection. Now that may be immoral by some standards but that is *NOT* illegal. Administrations have worked the Congress over in this manner for a very long time in order to get their own way and Bolden and Garver do work for the Administration.

Some of you believe that is the way we should go (all commercial) and some of you do not. I count myself among the later because I personally do not believe that American HSF should be held hostage to the wellbeing of the shareholder. National interests should not be considered a profit center. But that's beside the point and off topic so I won't go there.

I believe, as does Ross, that we are witnessing the beginning of the end of NASA as we have known it for over 50 years, UNLESS the leaders in Congress grow some balls. If they did, this then is what should happen next:

But before I say it let me be clear that this is what should happen in *ANY* similar confrontation between the executive and the legislative, NOT just this specific SLS debate. This will very likely become a Constitutional crisis unless Bolden complies or Congress caves.

Because the law already exists, signed by the President, and Bolden has clearly not complied with the law, he *AND* his deputy Garver should be summoned to appear before Congress via subpoena specifically to deliver to the committee the SLS selection that he made in June that was to have been the subject of today's hearing. Their presence should be compelled by escort if necessary. Upon the opening of the hearing, Bolden should be asked if he has the SLS configuration with him to present to the committee. If he does, all is well and the crisis is averted. If he does not, then he should be asked no further questions and he should be *immediately* placed in custody and held for a Contempt of Congress hearing, to be scheduled at a later date. He should be informed that he will remain in custody until such time as the hearing is conducted. If that happens, then Garver should be called next to testimony and asked the same question. If she does not produce the documents then she should also be immediately placed in custody with the same conditions. Before the hearing is adjourned, the 3rd and 4th persons beneath Bolden and Garver should be identified as leadership next in line and the committee should cause them to be similarly subpoenaed for a hearing to be scheduled within 10 days, at which time they will be given the same opportunity to comply, with the same consequences threatened for non-compliance. This should continue down the chain of command until either the White House or Congress caves or some accommodation acceptable to both is reached.

Like I said, this is what should happen when one party (the President) has brought about a Constitutional crisis, which he has by causing the Administrator, thru his OMB enforcers, to be instructed to stall – again. This same procedure should be executed in any such Constitutional crisis, regardless of the names of the players or the issue at hand. That is the way the framers of the Constitution wrote the procedures. It remains to be seen whether or not the current members of Congress have the balls to do it.

If that was ever to happen, it should have been today I think. Daylight is the perfect sterilizer…
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jkumpire on 07/12/2011 09:53 PM
The bottom line is this as I read the thread:

1. The current Administration is acting the same way it is in other areas, it is going to try to run over the Congress to do what it wants with NASA, no matter what the law says. And they want to kill NASA.

2. Ultimately, the current Administration sees American HSF as beginning and ending with the ISS, and if they could end ISS support before 2020 they would.

3. Commercial HSF is useful only for ISS support. If ISS goes away so will any support for Commercial spaceflight.

4. The current Administration wants no US HSF, and will do what it can to kill it for future Administrations. BEO missions have no interest for them, and they will kill it if they can.

It's hard to see it being any other way. Mr. Obama said as much during the 2008 campaign, and he intends to follow through on his honest view, not the one he took later in the year to get votes in FL. He got elected, FBOW.

Those are awfully strong accusations.

I am not sure they are strong accusations, That's how I see all this playing out. And that is how I see the direction of the Administration. And in spite of the fact that they sent up to the House budget number X, what is in it says they support ISS, commercial, and some non-manned projects. The rest is 'research' without a real purpose.

APolispace, sorry I don't buy your view. I've read that statement before, more than once, and it is a different version of reality from what I see.

The whole point in this discussion is clear, after Augustine the Administration brought out a blueprint for what it wanted in HSF and NASA in the future. That blueprint was rejected by the Congress, and the President signed on to the bill that in essence overturned his proposal.

But the senior NASA leadership is acting like the law that was passed never existed. By what they are doing now they show what they want to do. They want Mr. Obama's 2008 election campaign vision fulfilled, and they want the 2010 post-Augustine proposal as their blueprint.

Please show how this is not the case by analyzing their actions.     

You are welcome to your interpenetration of the facts.  But I don't see it, and I would at least ask that you not repeat the claim that it was the brazen flip-flop (the Florida speech)

Sir,

While I am not sure I would use the term "brazen flip-flop" for what happened, and I have not used that term specifically, I will try and fulfill your request.

I just believe what I saw and read. What is is.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kch on 07/12/2011 10:03 PM
For me two big deals to come out of this was the admission that 1) the approved SLS design is basically an SD-HLV using ATK solid boosters (with possible competition for said boosters in the evolved SLS - who knows when/if that would ever happen), and 2) they have ignored the 2016/17 deadline for an operational 70-ton LV.

So point blank, wrt #2 above, Admin. Bolden basically said the Senate Compromise language does not work for NASA; NASA will not be working toward that deadline, or anything close.  And let me ask -- what response did this information illicit from the Committee?  Outrage?  Disappointment?

Both of those and more, I'd bet.  The next few days (and weeks) may be "interesting times" indeed.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 10:12 PM
This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 

If Augustine was the open discussion preceding FY11, why were many people caught off guard by the cancellation of Orion in the original FY11 proposal?  Why did we subsequently flounder with Orion as merely a lifeboat vehicle?  That was frankly shameful given NASA HQ now characterizes lunar Orion as exactly the vehicle we need as MPCV!

As regards SLS, what did Augustine have to say about the 5 SSME Design Reference Vehicle presented in January?  Didn't the panel's open discussion reach a solid conclusion about that design?  Isn't it only in certain exclusive cabals of "experts" that 5 SSME vehicles can appear to have any sort of consensus support?

The decision was made by Bolden on June 20th as Chris reported. The time for public debate is over. Bolden mentioned that the preliminary comments from the independent study is that NASA's cost estimates were realistic.

Bolden says he cannot yet disclose his plan, even though he was required to do so three months ago by section 309 of the Authorization Act.  Congress wanted his report so there could be time for analysis and review before FY12 deliberations began.  Bolden's extra-legal failure to report made that impossible.

I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com

Welcome to the forum!

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/12/2011 10:20 PM
Guys,

   I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com   But having run lots of these hearings, I have to say it's about what I expected to see.  A lot of Members who "like" space trying to show they care, but without doing the hard work required to actually solve the problem.  Since Members have to choose among solving 500 such issues, it's no wonder they fall back to empathy and table-thumping. 

   But all of this "oh my God... Charlie said SLS won't carry humans until after 2020"... THIS is news to you?  It wasn't news to Augustine or NASA.  Unless you throw a lot more money at SLS, money which NASA clearly is not going to have -- note for reference that Chairman Wolf plussed up the SLS budget because he LIKES SLS, but he still couldn't fund it more than the FY2012 budget without slashing other things.  And he only got it $180m more.  It needed a billion+ more.  Year after year. 

   The only thing sillier than the surprise that the program DOESN'T FIT in the budget and schedule mandate of the Authorization Act -- it turns out Pi does not equal 3, no matter what Senators claim -- is the notion that Charlie is only saying this because OMB or some other evil White House folks told him to. 

   NO.  These are the numbers.  If NASA's team disgorged a plan that could launch Orion with people by 2015, it would get leaked out.  Mr. Bergrin has already demonstrated his ability to extract this kind of info from the bureaucracy.  But it hasn't.  The best case was launching crew in late 2017, and that's if they got the AUTHORIZATION runout.  Which of course the APPROPRIATORS are ignoring.  Because they can. 

    Perhaps the White House and Congress will come to a debt deal. Perhaps the constraints on domestic discretionary spending will be lifted somewhat.  Perhaps NASA can have the 2010 budget instead of the 2008 budget.  I don't know. 

    But failing a miracle, NASA will not get as much money as the Authorizers hoped, which means SLS won't arrive as early as they hoped.  This has nothing to do with OMB's or anyone's opinions about SLS... it's just math.  If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users... since no other users exist. 

    NASA-unique launchers will expend the budget sooner than other alternatives, and I see no evidence that they cause the budget to be increased in the first place. 

    Finally, unless you don't care whether exploration missions ever actually happen -- because you're, say, an SLS contractor -- I don't see how you wouldn't want some independent validation that the whole architecture Charlie has just chosen will actually fit into some sort of realistic budget.  Because if it doesn't, then we never get there.  Maybe we finish developing SLS, but we can't afford to fly it very often.  So we don't get to actually explore.

    Which was the whole point, right? 
Hell of a first post.

I usually hate it when people only say +1 in a post but I agree that this first post deserves to be praised with a +1. Keep posting!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: grdja on 07/12/2011 10:23 PM
Might I remind everyone that the same "BEO defending NASA saving" congress is one that has put millstone of 130 metric ton to LEO monster rocket on NASA's neck.  NASA can't do a J-130, that same law you speak so much of doesn't allow it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: EE Scott on 07/12/2011 10:30 PM

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Quote
Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

We don't need to ignore this law, within the law itself it says that you don't have to use certain elements if not practicable.  NASA can argue that it is not practicable to execute certain portions of the mandated design elements.  That is what is missing for me - if NASA doesn't think it's practicable, why doesn't it just say that?  How could Congress fight against an alternative design that NASA puts forward that stretches the timeline or simplifies the design?  Personally I have been anti-SLS and pro-EELV implementation for HSF exploration, but I think the arguments need to be made above-board, explicitly, for all to see and judge.  Just what is practicable, and what is wishful-thinking?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: chrisking0997 on 07/12/2011 10:38 PM
re: administration working to eliminate government HSF

while I agree that a lot seems to point to this being the case, what baffles me is the motive/point behind doing so.  The current administration is one whose politics generally is to move more under government control/regulation (health care, failing businesses, mortgages, etc).  Why is HSF being singled out and so much effort being put into the effort to privatize it?  Why is this the issue that they seem so hell bent on drawing a line in the sand and sticking to it?  Theres no way they buy the "if we cancel NASA we could cure cancer" mentaility...so why the stubbornness?  Its such a small drop in the bucket to put up such a large fight over.  I mean, we know why congress is putting up such a fight ($ and jobs...most could not care less about the long term future of HSF) but whats in it for the administration is what I dont see.

I dont particularly like him, but Obama is too smart for this.  This path we are on gains him nothing if he gets his way...there are no short term gains and the few long term ones are so far out its not worth the energy being expended.  But the short and long term consequences of hindering American HSF will certainly become a large stain on his legacy.  Do we really think that Obama will one day brag about the fact he brought an end to government HSF?

I dont know....when I read that last sentence a few times out loud it doesnt sound as far fetched as I thought.  Some part of me can see him making exactly that speech on the steps of Barack Obama Elementary School, built on the ruins of 39B.  Maybe this is all just a sinister plot to get back at Florida for the 2000 election.  I dont know anymore.  But I do know that as of this point I dont see man making it back to the moon before I die (Im 38), let along to Mars.  Not because we cant, but because we wont.  Its pathetic
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: JSC Phil on 07/12/2011 10:39 PM
Some work to transcribe all of that live Chris, thank you.

Interest take by Eric Berger, who's held his ground after HQ PAO tried to get him to retract.

http://blog.chron.com/sciguy/2011/07/on-nasa-and-houston-sheila-jackson-lee-succeeds-where-i-have-failed/
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 10:47 PM
...There is no glut of rockets...
Yes there is. EELVs are having a problem with not enough demand. There are two more rocket families entering the equation. Making another dedicated NASA launcher is a really bad idea until you have hundreds and hundreds of exploration payload tons launched every year (and even then it's not a good idea since it doesn't allow the commercial market to benefit directly, unlike an architecture which uses multiple-purpose launch vehicle(s)).

Remember, Shuttle wasn't SUPPOSED to be a NASA-only launcher, it was thought to be able to substantially lower prices because it could be used by all sorts of folks and thus get the high launch rate needed to make an RLV like Shuttle the economically superior launch solution.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 10:51 PM
Just reviewed the fine work Chris has done in quick comments.  Some points were left out or missed, this is my fill in from my notes.

Mr Hall:    A very sharp congressman @ 88 years.   Clearly one of the best questions came out of this man.

From Chris’s Notes: “Al Gore budget cuts by 25 percent. Spoke to NASA, who cut it 34 percent and NASA has not been the same since.”

Fill in: Al Gore came in and said we must trim NASA (when AG was VP with Clinton).   The DCX was a fine design, we got that poor X33 and got nothing!

 Rohrbacker: clean up space debris is a mission we should be looking at now.


Bartlett :  No one is capturing the interest of Math and science.  NASA is doing a terrible job of messaging.

Ohio Ms Fudge:  NASA Glen, still gets Orion.   Scheduling costs will drive testing.

Palazzo sub chairman:   Q We need to test before launch what are tests on 2012?

A Bolden :  We need to Find money for a new lox/RP engine.   

MS Edwajos   What is the holdup with SLS  Bolden A No one is holding up SLS at OMB.   Bolden expected 20 billion for 2012.   We have to make adjustments

Dravaack   ROI of going to space   IS the DoD interested in the SLS?  Q) Main threat to defence:
Boden A DoD  is Interested in the space industrial base.

Mrs Adams  why end the space shuttle without an option B?

A) Ahead of Constellation when it was canceled Timeline for SLS, .    2017 is first flights.  Timeline for SLS 20’s before human rated.

Mr. Haris   2010 authoration,   2015 for Commercial to ISS.  Not fulfill the law.

Mr. Clark:  8000 jobs of JWST with loss.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 10:55 PM
Thanks guys, remember, it was live note taking, quoted best I could with an EVA going on in the background, so class as paraphrasing as it's near-impossible to transcribe word for word without reviewing a video of the hearing. It was mainly for those unable to watch live and wanting to know what was being said.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 10:59 PM
...There is no glut of rockets...
Yes there is. EELVs are having a problem with not enough demand. There are two more rocket families entering the equation. Making another dedicated NASA launcher is a really bad idea until you have hundreds and hundreds of exploration payload tons launched every year (and even then it's not a good idea since it doesn't allow the commercial market to benefit directly, unlike an architecture which uses multiple-purpose launch vehicle(s)).

Remember, Shuttle wasn't SUPPOSED to be a NASA-only launcher.

And who said SLS will be?  It very well could have DoD or other government customers eventually. 

Remember the reason for why there would a "NASA launcher" in the mix in the first place, because the market cannot provide it.

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

Until that is known, you and others can keep saying it is a "bad idea" but it is hollow because you have no solid foundation.  It is your opinion.  Perhaps you could place this in your threads.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 11:06 PM
...There is no glut of rockets...
Yes there is. EELVs are having a problem with not enough demand. There are two more rocket families entering the equation. Making another dedicated NASA launcher is a really bad idea until you have hundreds and hundreds of exploration payload tons launched every year (and even then it's not a good idea since it doesn't allow the commercial market to benefit directly, unlike an architecture which uses multiple-purpose launch vehicle(s)).

Remember, Shuttle wasn't SUPPOSED to be a NASA-only launcher.

And who said SLS will be?  It very well could have DoD or other government customers eventually. 

Remember the reason for why there would a "NASA launcher" in the mix in the first place, because the market cannot provide it.

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

Until that is known, you and others can keep saying it is a "bad idea" but it is hollow because you have no solid foundation.  It is your opinion.  Perhaps you could place this in your threads.
Funding a launch vehicle in a market with more than enough launch vehicles at the expense of demand (i.e. cutting payloads) for the launch vehicle market is clearly a recipe for failure. No grand plans needed to show this is the case.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 11:06 PM
This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 

If Augustine was the open discussion preceding FY11, why were many people caught off guard by the cancellation of Orion in the original FY11 proposal?  Why did we subsequently flounder with Orion as merely a lifeboat vehicle?  That was frankly shameful given NASA HQ now characterizes lunar Orion as exactly the vehicle we need as MPCV!

As I said, it was 80-90% of the Augustine report - not everything.  Further, its arguable (I said arguable) as to Orion is really what you want for Deep space exploration.  As for its selection as MPCV - Orion isn't the mess that Ares I is, but it is far from ideal as a Deep Space spacecraft

As regards SLS, what did Augustine have to say about the 5 SSME Design Reference Vehicle presented in January?  Didn't the panel's open discussion reach a solid conclusion about that design?  Isn't it only in certain exclusive cabals of "experts" that 5 SSME vehicles can appear to have any sort of consensus support?

Sorry, but huh??  that didn't make a whole lot of sense to me. 

I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com

Welcome to the forum!

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

What law is being discussed as violate? 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/12/2011 11:09 PM

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

I don't think there would've been such an outcry had Obama said we're going to use existing launch vehicles to venture beyond LEO within 5 - 10 years, but instead he's keeping us relegated to LEO for more than a decade.  That is unacceptable, imo.  (And yes, I think SLS/MPCV exploration missions failing to occur this decade is unacceptable too.  This clearly isn't the same great country that accomplished Apollo within a decade starting from scratch.)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 11:10 PM

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Quote
Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

We don't need to ignore this law, within the law itself it says that you don't have to use certain elements if not practicable.  NASA can argue that it is not practicable to execute certain portions of the mandated design elements.  That is what is missing for me - if NASA doesn't think it's practicable, why doesn't it just say that?  How could Congress fight against an alternative design that NASA puts forward that stretches the timeline or simplifies the design?  Personally I have been anti-SLS and pro-EELV implementation for HSF exploration, but I think the arguments need to be made above-board, explicitly, for all to see and judge.  Just what is practicable, and what is wishful-thinking?

Because its not a monolithic organization.  Thats part of the issue here.  Different people within NASA have different views on what is practicable. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 11:16 PM
...There is no glut of rockets...
Yes there is. EELVs are having a problem with not enough demand. There are two more rocket families entering the equation. Making another dedicated NASA launcher is a really bad idea until you have hundreds and hundreds of exploration payload tons launched every year (and even then it's not a good idea since it doesn't allow the commercial market to benefit directly, unlike an architecture which uses multiple-purpose launch vehicle(s)).

Remember, Shuttle wasn't SUPPOSED to be a NASA-only launcher.

And who said SLS will be?  It very well could have DoD or other government customers eventually. 

Remember the reason for why there would a "NASA launcher" in the mix in the first place, because the market cannot provide it.

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

Until that is known, you and others can keep saying it is a "bad idea" but it is hollow because you have no solid foundation.  It is your opinion.  Perhaps you could place this in your threads.
Funding a launch vehicle in a market with more than enough launch vehicles at the expense of demand (i.e. cutting payloads) for the launch vehicle market is clearly a recipe for failure. No grand plans needed to show this is the case.

No, that's incorrect and you are avoiding just having to ask the questions that would prove or deny the answer you claim to already have.  You are using phrases like "more than enough", which are clearly subjective and have no data behind it.  Data I have been calling for that everyone needs regardless of what side of the debate you are on. 

Again with the payloads, and again I point to these questions.  Because there are no payloads for non-SLS-only architectures either. 

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jagmaster on 07/12/2011 11:18 PM

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

I don't think there would've been such an outcry had Obama said we're going to use existing launch vehicles to venture beyond LEO within 5 - 10 years, but instead he's keeping us relegated to LEO for more than a decade.  That is unacceptable, imo.  (And yes, I think SLS/MPCV exploration missions failing to occur this decade is unacceptable too.  This clearly isn't the same great country that accomplished Apollo within a decade starting from scratch.)


So what? If he'd announced a plan to use EELVs or suchlike, there'd still have been a massive backlash from Shuttle contractors and representatives in both Houses.

And your last sentence is a clear fallacy. There's no Apollo-like budget on offer.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 11:18 PM

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

I don't think there would've been such an outcry had Obama said we're going to use existing launch vehicles to venture beyond LEO within 5 - 10 years, but instead he's keeping us relegated to LEO for more than a decade.  That is unacceptable, imo.  (And yes, I think SLS/MPCV exploration missions failing to occur this decade is unacceptable too.  This clearly isn't the same great country that accomplished Apollo within a decade starting from scratch.)

It would never be the job of any president.  It is the job of NASA.  NASA has refused to do with a SLS and without SLS.  The question people should be asking is "why", not pointing at others with shakey conclusions suggesting they are to blame for ones lot in life. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/12/2011 11:19 PM
As will I. I'm happy Bolden is clearly in favor of SLS for exploration (his words), understands EELVs are not human rated (his words) and that it needs to be SD HLV at least initially (his words).

I wonder if this was all a very clever play with the schedule, showing how bad it would be unless it was supported by good money. Imagine if he said he could do it by 2014, they'd take money back.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 11:19 PM

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

I don't think there would've been such an outcry had Obama said we're going to use existing launch vehicles to venture beyond LEO within 5 - 10 years, but instead he's keeping us relegated to LEO for more than a decade.  That is unacceptable, imo.  (And yes, I think SLS/MPCV exploration missions failing to occur this decade is unacceptable too.  This clearly isn't the same great country that accomplished Apollo within a decade starting from scratch.)

It would never be the job of any president.  It is the job of NASA.  NASA has refused to do with a SLS and without SLS.  The question people should be asking is "why", not pointing at others with shakey conclusions suggesting they are to blame for ones lot in life. 
Why don't you tell us why, then?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Lobo on 07/12/2011 11:21 PM
Is this really the same nation that achieved the goals of Apollo in under a decade?

In name only...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 11:21 PM
So what? If he'd announced a plan to use EELVs or suchlike, there'd still have been a massive backlash from Shuttle contractors and representatives in both Houses.


And this kind of mentality for those who think they know everything about everything and everyone is also part of the problem.  Wonderful irony in the fact you too are blaming a particular group for lack of answers to needed questions
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 11:21 PM
NASA can't won't deliver manned space until sometime around or after 2020.

There, fixed that for ya. The fact of the matter is that with the existing budget available to NASA a Jupiter-130 "ish" SLS could be in the air in 5-6 years. We have talked to all the major contractors already. We have run all the budget numbers – countless times. The Augustine Commission, thru the analysis provided by the Aerospace Corp, validated all the budgetary numbers we provided. There absolutely is no justifiable reason why Orion cannot be flying on the SLS by 2016 barring deliberate choice to delay to that date (which is a legal thing to do).

This entire issue has been clouded with so much emotion, crap and horsesh*t that it's no wonder so few can see what's going on. If we had not already developed our inside sources back in the DIRECT days even we would not be able to say with certainty what's going on. But thankfully we did and we can and this is what's going on:

It is almost exactly as Final Frontier has stated wrt the Chicago-style politics. The end of US Government-based HSF is being orchestrated from the White House. The OMB is being used as the enforcer in much the same way as Jerry the Bat was used in other days by Chicago family members. Bolden and Garver are the designated prophets of the brave new world of Commercial Space but they have been told to function by subterfuge and misdirection. Now that may be immoral by some standards but that is *NOT* illegal. Administrations have worked the Congress over in this manner for a very long time in order to get their own way and Bolden and Garver do work for the Administration.

Some of you believe that is the way we should go (all commercial) and some of you do not. I count myself among the later because I personally do not believe that American HSF should be held hostage to the wellbeing of the shareholder. National interests should not be considered a profit center. But that's beside the point and off topic so I won't go there.

I believe, as does Ross, that we are witnessing the beginning of the end of NASA as we have known it for over 50 years, UNLESS the leaders in Congress grow some balls. If they did, this then is what should happen next:

But before I say it let me be clear that this is what should happen in *ANY* similar confrontation between the executive and the legislative, NOT just this specific SLS debate. This will very likely become a Constitutional crisis unless Bolden complies or Congress caves.

Because the law already exists, signed by the President, and Bolden has clearly not complied with the law, he *AND* his deputy Garver should be summoned to appear before Congress via subpoena specifically to deliver to the committee the SLS selection that he made in June that was to have been the subject of today's hearing. Their presence should be compelled by escort if necessary. Upon the opening of the hearing, Bolden should be asked if he has the SLS configuration with him to present to the committee. If he does, all is well and the crisis is averted. If he does not, then he should be asked no further questions and he should be *immediately* placed in custody and held for a Contempt of Congress hearing, to be scheduled at a later date. He should be informed that he will remain in custody until such time as the hearing is conducted. If that happens, then Garver should be called next to testimony and asked the same question. If she does not produce the documents then she should also be immediately placed in custody with the same conditions. Before the hearing is adjourned, the 3rd and 4th persons beneath Bolden and Garver should be identified as leadership next in line and the committee should cause them to be similarly subpoenaed for a hearing to be scheduled within 10 days, at which time they will be given the same opportunity to comply, with the same consequences threatened for non-compliance. This should continue down the chain of command until either the White House or Congress caves or some accommodation acceptable to both is reached.

Like I said, this is what should happen when one party (the President) has brought about a Constitutional crisis, which he has by causing the Administrator, thru his OMB enforcers, to be instructed to stall – again. This same procedure should be executed in any such Constitutional crisis, regardless of the names of the players or the issue at hand. That is the way the framers of the Constitution wrote the procedures. It remains to be seen whether or not the current members of Congress have the balls to do it.



I completely agree Chuck and this is what I ultimately expect will happen. What I cannot say is when it will be before the 2012 elections or after, and IMO the sooner the better because we are out of time on this particular report.

Right now Congress has its hands full with the Debt ceiling crisis, once that has been dealt with I expect this will be *the* next issue on the radar. We have heard from the House comitee but the not the Senate yet and it was the Senate that had the strongest words and actions regarding last year's debacle and putting it right. I think out of regard for Bolden's record of service and the Debt crisis, that is the reason today's hearing went the way it went, but Mr. Hall's closing statement "begging you for the information" clearly says to me its a last polite request. Remember also that the opening statment included: "We are insulted and reserve the right to open an investigation".


So the sh#$ is hitting the fan so to speak but it hasn't yet traveled downwind. Its really too bad things turned out this way and Bolden didn't just tell the POTUS to go away and do what the law mandates he do.


Regards to the timeline of legal action: Recall that as early as last week there was talk from the Senate of an upcoming investigation and that they were going to subpoena.


I think the only reason we didn't see this today was because this was a last request, in light of his record, by Mr. Hall to Bolden to do this voluntarily and because of the debt crisis taking up essentially all available time to members of both houses right now.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 11:23 PM

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

I don't think there would've been such an outcry had Obama said we're going to use existing launch vehicles to venture beyond LEO within 5 - 10 years, but instead he's keeping us relegated to LEO for more than a decade.  That is unacceptable, imo.  (And yes, I think SLS/MPCV exploration missions failing to occur this decade is unacceptable too.  This clearly isn't the same great country that accomplished Apollo within a decade starting from scratch.)

It would never be the job of any president.  It is the job of NASA.  NASA has refused to do with a SLS and without SLS.  The question people should be asking is "why", not pointing at others with shakey conclusions suggesting they are to blame for ones lot in life. 
Why don't you tell us why, then?

Um, maybe because I don't know......hence the need for the questions.  For someone who claims to come from a physics background, I am surprised to some extent you do not know this. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 11:26 PM
...Again with the payloads, and again I point to these questions.  Because there are no payloads for non-SLS-only architectures either. 
Yes, there are. Commercial crew. Science payloads. Tech demos. Just a few examples.

All cut in the latest House budget proposal.

What do you want? Another JFK? Obama said asteroid by 2025, Mars by 2030s. There ya go. And we're not going to get better unless NASA is given a HUGE increase in budget. With Congress pulling for a different vision than the Administration, even such a plan will not be done.

I don't really care that much about SLS. If given enough budget, it'd work just fine. But under the current constrained budget, it just pushes ANY kind of HSF exploration out to the right.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/12/2011 11:28 PM
Can everyone calm the frak down. Honestly, it's like dealing with kids fighting over playground swings in the Space "Wild Wild West" Policy section sometimes.

"Someone disagreed with me on the internet, I'm so offended".

It's a messageboard thread. No policy is going to be made on here. No one's going to care what's been said on this thread. If you all met face to face you wouldn't act like this, but if you did, I'd sure as hell jump in and say the above.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 11:29 PM
...Again with the payloads, and again I point to these questions.  Because there are no payloads for non-SLS-only architectures either. 
Yes, there are. Commercial crew. Science payloads. Tech demos. Just a few examples.

All cut in the latest House budget proposal.

What do you want? Another JFK? Obama said asteroid by 2025, Mars by 2030s. There ya go. And we're not going to get better unless NASA is given a HUGE increase in budget. With Congress pulling for a different vision than the Administration, even such a plan will not be done.

I don't really care that much about SLS. If given enough budget, it'd work just fine. But under the current constrained budget, it just pushes ANY kind of HSF exploration out to the right.

Exactly. So now I am in agreement with you on this to some extent, I won't speak to your views on SLS but your ASBOLUTELY right about the budget cuts to the commercial programs and associated payloads. That's crap just as much as having no plan whatsoever (despite it being mandated by law) is.

But I am hoping, that after the debt ceiling business is over this will get the attention it needs and we will get this sorted out and fixed.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/12/2011 11:30 PM
Can everyone calm the frak down. Honestly, it's like dealing with kids fighting over playground swings in the Space "Wild Wild West" Policy section sometimes.

"Someone disagreed with me on the internet, I'm so offended".

It's a messageboard thread. No policy is going to be made on here. No one's going to care what's been said on this thread. If you all met face to face you wouldn't act like this, but if you did, I'd sure as hell jump in and say the above.
For the record, I'd love to have a beer (or coffee) with anyone on this thread.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/12/2011 11:33 PM
Can everyone calm the frak down. Honestly, it's like dealing with kids fighting over playground swings in the Space "Wild Wild West" Policy section sometimes.

"Someone disagreed with me on the internet, I'm so offended".

It's a messageboard thread. No policy is going to be made on here. No one's going to care what's been said on this thread. If you all met face to face you wouldn't act like this, but if you did, I'd sure as hell jump in and say the above.
For the record, I'd love to have a beer (or coffee) with anyone on this thread.

At this point I am going to need several beers to get my head wrapped around this.  :-X
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 11:35 PM

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

I don't think there would've been such an outcry had Obama said we're going to use existing launch vehicles to venture beyond LEO within 5 - 10 years, but instead he's keeping us relegated to LEO for more than a decade.  That is unacceptable, imo.  (And yes, I think SLS/MPCV exploration missions failing to occur this decade is unacceptable too.  This clearly isn't the same great country that accomplished Apollo within a decade starting from scratch.)

Again, IMHO, the issue isn't that he is keeping us "relegated" to LEO.  He, and his advisers, have realized what Jeff Greason said during the Augustine hearings
Quote
MR. GREASON:  Well, let me frame the question.  Let me frame the choices -- the policy choices.  And this is a theme that's going to recur several times.  You know, if you don't like what you're doing -- if you don't like what you're getting for your money, you can either spend  more money or you can change the price of things over time, which is essentially what research and development is about, or you can turn some other things off, and the other things are the other 60 percent of the budget, the various fixed costs.  Those are your choices.

And so if you don't invest in technology and you don't like today's picture and you don't turn anything off, then when the next commission gets up ten years from now

MR. AUGUSTINE:  I've been there, done that.

MR. GREASON:  -- the situation won't have changed.

In essence, the R&D and Commercializing LEO were the Gemini program, with Apollo to follow on  when we had a better understand on the R&D issue. 

Oh, and I disagree - the issue is over the rockets, not the destination
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/12/2011 11:41 PM
General Bolden went eyeball to eyeball with Congress and said “the buck stops here”… Congress just blinked… I have a saying… “behind the smile lies some teeth”.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 11:42 PM
My feeling is that Bolden has the unenviable job of trying to put lipstick on a pig.

Now, Now don't go talking bout the J2-X like that (grin)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/12/2011 11:43 PM

Because its not a monolithic organization.  Thats part of the issue here.  Different people within NASA have different views on what is practicable. 

That's because Bolden checked his leadership skills at the door. There is *NO* leadership at NASA at all. It is an organization that is floundering on the rocks, drifting without goals or mission. Leaders in the space industries of foreign countries are already commenting that NASA has lost itself and is no more. The emperor has no clothes.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/12/2011 11:44 PM
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

What law is being discussed as violate? 

The NASA Authorization Act of 2010.  Here's what Senators Nelson and Hutchison wrote recently:
(http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewsr.html?pid=35805)
Quote
Finally, we would like to clarify our intent when stating "to the extent practicable" in the Authorization Act, such as the direction to leverage Shuttle and Constellation capabilities "to the extent practicable" in developing the Space Launch System and the multi-purpose crew vehicle. Federal courts have held that the phrase "to the maximum extent practicable" imposes "a clear duty on [an] agency to fulfill the [relevant] statutory command to the extent that it is feasible or possible*' (Fund for Animals v. Babbitt, 903 F. Supp. 96,107 (D.D.C. 1995) (noting that the phrase "does not permit an agency unbridled discretion"), Further, the Government Accountability Office has determined that "where Congress directs that a [contracting] preference be given to the greatest extent practicable, an agency must either provide the preference or articulate a reasoned explanation of why it is impracticable to do so" (Ocuto Blacktop & Paving Company, Inc., Opinion B-284 1 65, March 1,2000 (holding the Army Corps of Engineers had failed to demonstrate why providing a contract preference to a local business was impracticable)). Thus, in the context of the NASA Authorization Act, we believe that those statutorily directed actions to be performed by NASA "to the maximum extent practicable" or "to the extent practicable," such as the requirement in Section 302 of the law to extend or modify existing contracts, should be carried out, unless the agency can demonstrate why they are infeasible or impossible to perform.

(Regarding the blunder of 5/5 as the 130 ton DRV, we'll have to take that discussion to a different thread I suppose!)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: tnphysics on 07/12/2011 11:48 PM
NASA can't won't deliver manned space until sometime around or after 2020.

There, fixed that for ya. The fact of the matter is that with the existing budget available to NASA a Jupiter-130 "ish" SLS could be in the air in 5-6 years. We have talked to all the major contractors already. We have run all the budget numbers – countless times. The Augustine Commission, thru the analysis provided by the Aerospace Corp, validated all the budgetary numbers we provided. There absolutely is no justifiable reason why Orion cannot be flying on the SLS by 2016 barring deliberate choice to delay to that date (which is a legal thing to do).

This entire issue has been clouded with so much emotion, crap and horsesh*t that it's no wonder so few can see what's going on. If we had not already developed our inside sources back in the DIRECT days even we would not be able to say with certainty what's going on. But thankfully we did and we can and this is what's going on:

It is almost exactly as Final Frontier has stated wrt the Chicago-style politics. The end of US Government-based HSF is being orchestrated from the White House. The OMB is being used as the enforcer in much the same way as Jerry the Bat was used in other days by Chicago family members. Bolden and Garver are the designated prophets of the brave new world of Commercial Space but they have been told to function by subterfuge and misdirection. Now that may be immoral by some standards but that is *NOT* illegal. Administrations have worked the Congress over in this manner for a very long time in order to get their own way and Bolden and Garver do work for the Administration.

Some of you believe that is the way we should go (all commercial) and some of you do not. I count myself among the later because I personally do not believe that American HSF should be held hostage to the wellbeing of the shareholder. National interests should not be considered a profit center. But that's beside the point and off topic so I won't go there.

I believe, as does Ross, that we are witnessing the beginning of the end of NASA as we have known it for over 50 years, UNLESS the leaders in Congress grow some balls. If they did, this then is what should happen next:

But before I say it let me be clear that this is what should happen in *ANY* similar confrontation between the executive and the legislative, NOT just this specific SLS debate. This will very likely become a Constitutional crisis unless Bolden complies or Congress caves.

Because the law already exists, signed by the President, and Bolden has clearly not complied with the law, he *AND* his deputy Garver should be summoned to appear before Congress via subpoena specifically to deliver to the committee the SLS selection that he made in June that was to have been the subject of today's hearing. Their presence should be compelled by escort if necessary. Upon the opening of the hearing, Bolden should be asked if he has the SLS configuration with him to present to the committee. If he does, all is well and the crisis is averted. If he does not, then he should be asked no further questions and he should be *immediately* placed in custody and held for a Contempt of Congress hearing, to be scheduled at a later date. He should be informed that he will remain in custody until such time as the hearing is conducted. If that happens, then Garver should be called next to testimony and asked the same question. If she does not produce the documents then she should also be immediately placed in custody with the same conditions. Before the hearing is adjourned, the 3rd and 4th persons beneath Bolden and Garver should be identified as leadership next in line and the committee should cause them to be similarly subpoenaed for a hearing to be scheduled within 10 days, at which time they will be given the same opportunity to comply, with the same consequences threatened for non-compliance. This should continue down the chain of command until either the White House or Congress caves or some accommodation acceptable to both is reached.

Like I said, this is what should happen when one party (the President) has brought about a Constitutional crisis, which he has by causing the Administrator, thru his OMB enforcers, to be instructed to stall – again. This same procedure should be executed in any such Constitutional crisis, regardless of the names of the players or the issue at hand. That is the way the framers of the Constitution wrote the procedures. It remains to be seen whether or not the current members of Congress have the balls to do it.


If there IS no such configuration?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/12/2011 11:49 PM
Can everyone calm the frak down. Honestly, it's like dealing with kids fighting over playground swings in the Space "Wild Wild West" Policy section sometimes.

"Someone disagreed with me on the internet, I'm so offended".

It's a messageboard thread. No policy is going to be made on here. No one's going to care what's been said on this thread. If you all met face to face you wouldn't act like this, but if you did, I'd sure as hell jump in and say the above.
For the record, I'd love to have a beer (or coffee) with anyone on this thread.
If you ever make it out this way, Coffee's on me.  (and if anyone else from the PNW wants to meet up for coffee, feel free to let me know, I'm always game)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/12/2011 11:50 PM
...Again with the payloads, and again I point to these questions.  Because there are no payloads for non-SLS-only architectures either. 
Yes, there are. Commercial crew. Science payloads. Tech demos. Just a few examples.

All cut in the latest House budget proposal.

What do you want? Another JFK? Obama said asteroid by 2025, Mars by 2030s. There ya go. And we're not going to get better unless NASA is given a HUGE increase in budget. With Congress pulling for a different vision than the Administration, even such a plan will not be done.

I don't really care that much about SLS. If given enough budget, it'd work just fine. But under the current constrained budget, it just pushes ANY kind of HSF exploration out to the right.

These are not sufficient examples or are just vague categories.  Commercial crew is not meant for SLS nor is it meant at this point for beyond LEO exploration.  "Science payloads".  What does that mean?  JWST?  If so, you know SLS was not the reason for that.  "Tech demos" is again yet another nebulous category that just throws that out there for some reason.  What were these "tech demos" going to do and how would they have fit into any of the four questions I have mentioned again and again?

For the rest, you are just ranting.  If what you say is indeed "it", there is also no need for "tech development" or anything else given we have the capabilities essentially to conduct an asteroid mission now and can save 15 years of expense that essentially buys us nothing according to you.  Slow role Orion until then and you are almost done. 

For someone who does not "care" about SLS, it sure does seemingly infiltrate nearly every post and, from what I can tell, not in a non-biased sort of way. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kch on 07/12/2011 11:52 PM
General Bolden went eyeball to eyeball with Congress and said “the buck stops here”… Congress just blinked… I have a saying… “behind the smile lies some teeth”.
Regards
Robert


Indeed -- I suspect the General's going to get a good look at those teeth rather soon.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 11:54 PM
Honestly I am furious about what I saw today on the Hill and I am even more furious that some people cannot seem to recognize what is very clearly going on right in front of them or recognize the bigger picture in all of this. At the same time I am heartbroken watching our STS workforce doing the best they can to finish strong admist all this bullsh#@%!!


I am taking a break from this forum for about a week. I suggest if you care about your country one iota you contact your respective representatives about this issue and try to get them to see reason.

1. Do not cut NASA's budget
2. Make sure NASA does its bloody job and gets critical design decision reports made and issued on schedule instead of playing "puppet to the president" or whatever it is that's going on.



I honestly cannot stand to follow this anymore it makes me sick. Be back in one week.

FF

Talk to those on that Committie.   I for one plan on contact with the
chairman.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/12/2011 11:57 PM

Because its not a monolithic organization.  Thats part of the issue here.  Different people within NASA have different views on what is practicable. 

That's because Bolden checked his leadership skills at the door. There is *NO* leadership at NASA at all. It is an organization that is floundering on the rocks, drifting without goals or mission. Leaders in the space industries of foreign countries are already commenting that NASA has lost itself and is no more. The emperor has no clothes.

Did you catch the part about the question of two studies about how NASA employees feel?
 
Bolden said everywhere he went employees are happy.   The congressman requested the reports.
 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/12/2011 11:58 PM
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

What law is being discussed as violate? 

The NASA Authorization Act of 2010.  Here's what Senators Nelson and Hutchison wrote recently:
(http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewsr.html?pid=35805)
Quote
Finally, we would like to clarify our intent when stating "to the extent practicable" in the Authorization Act, such as the direction to leverage Shuttle and Constellation capabilities "to the extent practicable" in developing the Space Launch System and the multi-purpose crew vehicle. Federal courts have held that the phrase "to the maximum extent practicable" imposes "a clear duty on [an] agency to fulfill the [relevant] statutory command to the extent that it is feasible or possible*' (Fund for Animals v. Babbitt, 903 F. Supp. 96,107 (D.D.C. 1995) (noting that the phrase "does not permit an agency unbridled discretion"), Further, the Government Accountability Office has determined that "where Congress directs that a [contracting] preference be given to the greatest extent practicable, an agency must either provide the preference or articulate a reasoned explanation of why it is impracticable to do so" (Ocuto Blacktop & Paving Company, Inc., Opinion B-284 1 65, March 1,2000 (holding the Army Corps of Engineers had failed to demonstrate why providing a contract preference to a local business was impracticable)). Thus, in the context of the NASA Authorization Act, we believe that those statutorily directed actions to be performed by NASA "to the maximum extent practicable" or "to the extent practicable," such as the requirement in Section 302 of the law to extend or modify existing contracts, should be carried out, unless the agency can demonstrate why they are infeasible or impossible to perform.

(Regarding the blunder of 5/5 as the 130 ton DRV, we'll have to take that discussion to a different thread I suppose!)

Sorry, I just don't know what you are referring to 5/5 as 130 DRV.  anyway...

I am aware of that language.  But the key thing is the "to the extent practicable." 

See, the problem is the budget - with a larger budget, the retention of more of the existing Shuttle/Constellation infrastructure becomes viable. 

But it requires a larger budget - more than the Authorization provided, IMHO, and CERTAINLY more than they are going to get from Approps
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/13/2011 12:17 AM
Here are some important quotes from Bolden's opening statement:
http://science.house.gov/sites/republicans.science.house.gov/files/documents/hearings/071211_bolden.pdf

Quote
NASA is hoping to be able to launch an initial uncrewed test flight of an integrated early version of the SLS and the MPCV as early as 2017.
Quote
Although NASA must still finalize an integrated test flight plan, based on the President’s FY 2012 budget request, NASA is targeting that the first uncrewed SLS developmental flight or mission could take place
in late 2017 to support a crewed mission by the early 2020s and a visit to an asteroid in 2025.

Quote
NASA is strongly considering an early mission/test flight strategy that would include early flights that would begin with a lift capacity in the 70-100 mT range, sufficient to get out of LEO with meaningful
mission content, with the first flight targeted for the end of 2017 and the second flight targeted for 2021.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/13/2011 12:28 AM
Talk about a low flight rate...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 12:32 AM
re: administration working to eliminate government HSF

while I agree that a lot seems to point to this being the case, what baffles me is the motive/point behind doing so.  The current administration is one whose politics generally is to move more under government control/regulation (health care, failing businesses, mortgages, etc).  Why is HSF being singled out and so much effort being put into the effort to privatize it?  Why is this the issue that they seem so hell bent on drawing a line in the sand and sticking to it?  Theres no way they buy the "if we cancel NASA we could cure cancer" mentaility...so why the stubbornness?  Its such a small drop in the bucket to put up such a large fight over.  I mean, we know why congress is putting up such a fight ($ and jobs...most could not care less about the long term future of HSF) but whats in it for the administration is what I dont see.

I dont particularly like him, but Obama is too smart for this.  This path we are on gains him nothing if he gets his way...there are no short term gains and the few long term ones are so far out its not worth the energy being expended.  But the short and long term consequences of hindering American HSF will certainly become a large stain on his legacy.  Do we really think that Obama will one day brag about the fact he brought an end to government HSF?

I dont know....when I read that last sentence a few times out loud it doesnt sound as far fetched as I thought.  Some part of me can see him making exactly that speech on the steps of Barack Obama Elementary School, built on the ruins of 39B.  Maybe this is all just a sinister plot to get back at Florida for the 2000 election.  I dont know anymore.  But I do know that as of this point I dont see man making it back to the moon before I die (Im 38), let along to Mars.  Not because we cant, but because we wont.  Its pathetic

Sorry, this got lost a few pages back, and I had intended to address it.

I am curious - is it just so inconceivable that he may see the situation similar to how the pro-commercial people interpret it, and that is why he is doing it? 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mr. mark on 07/13/2011 12:45 AM
Anyway you slice it, it's 8-10 years from now without NASA HSF capability.
I think it's time for everyone to get on the commercial spaceflight train, at least to LEO. Without it it's a long, long, long walk to the next station down the track.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 12:57 AM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

You make it sound as if this isn't the 'plan' all along?  ;)

This whole show, and that's what it was: a show, makes it clear that the issues at hand are not Bolden's specifically. He is a puppet, an in-between player between the WH/OMB & the Congress. And he's playing his part just fine.

That note of the July 8th day having been cancelled because of another cost study? A design he chose, because the others we un-affordable? How the heck do you choose an un-costed design and say use this one (because it's going to somehow be cheaper, even though you don't know?) and now have to way for a costing?

He knows the cost, he must have. Delay, delay, delay, seemingly all by design.

Thanks for the transcribing Chris. That must have been painful - giving up that EVA, for this political nonsense.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: brejol on 07/13/2011 01:02 AM


That's because Bolden checked his leadership skills at the door. There is *NO* leadership at NASA at all. It is an organization that is floundering on the rocks, drifting without goals or mission. Leaders in the space industries of foreign countries are already commenting that NASA has lost itself and is no more. The emperor has no clothes.


That will all change soon.  America is still the nation that conquered the moon and will regain that capability.

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

2.  "Drifting without goals or mission".    Constellation goals will be restored (moon, Mars etc), but with a sustainable hardware and management infrastructure.

3.  "Foreign countries are commenting that Nasa has lost itself and is no more".  Wishful thinking.  Nasa will regain its footing and enter its most productive period ever.  The opportunity rover is nearing it's 20th mile on Mars.  Anything is possible.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: someguy on 07/13/2011 01:03 AM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Since when have these components been human-rated?

Last I heard, the shuttle doesn't fulfill any modern definition of human-rating, especially because there is no LAS.

So SLS has to go through the process of human-rating, just like every other rocket that wants to launch humans (Falcon 9 and EELV's).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 01:06 AM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Since when have these components been human-rated?

Last I heard, the shuttle doesn't fulfill any modern definition of human-rating, especially because there is no LAS.

So SLS has to go through the process of human-rating, just like every other rocket that wants to launch humans (Falcon 9 and EELV's).

The original ET components, avionics, SSMEs are all 'human rated'
The SRBs are (in effect) HR, with specific levels of redundancy & reliability.

The shuttle itself is not in question as it is not part of the future SLS design, only it's HR engines, which are fully qualified & we have a stockpile of.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/13/2011 01:08 AM

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

Wow, Capt. Cernan. I interviewed him once - the man is an inspiration! I've never "felt" someone down a phone line like that. I can't even describe it. The man is legend, an absolute legend.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: grakenverb on 07/13/2011 01:12 AM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Since when have these components been human-rated?

Last I heard, the shuttle doesn't fulfill any modern definition of human-rating, especially because there is no LAS.

So SLS has to go through the process of human-rating, just like every other rocket that wants to launch humans (Falcon 9 and EELV's).


Why would it take longer to make a rocket "human rated" than it took to design, build, and fly Mercury-Gemini-Apollo FIFTY YEARS AGO? 

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Lars_J on 07/13/2011 01:20 AM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Since when have these components been human-rated?

Last I heard, the shuttle doesn't fulfill any modern definition of human-rating, especially because there is no LAS.

So SLS has to go through the process of human-rating, just like every other rocket that wants to launch humans (Falcon 9 and EELV's).


Why would it take longer to make a rocket "human rated" than it took to design, build, and fly Mercury-Gemini-Apollo FIFTY YEARS AGO? 

The people (and organization) that did that is long gone. We are now dealing with a group which have failed to develop a new launch system (and human spacecraft) for three decades.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: pathfinder_01 on 07/13/2011 01:23 AM
The original ET components, avionics, SSMEs are all 'human rated'
The SRBs are (in effect) HR, with specific levels of redundancy & reliability.

The shuttle itself is not in question as it is not part of the future SLS design, only it's HR engines, which are fully qualified & we have a stockpile of.

Most of the avionics of the shuttle are uh....on the shuttle! So you need new avionics.

The ET needs to be redesigned since it will either

a. be a sidemount with different aerodynamic loads than the shuttle
b. Or be an inline desgin that must support loads from the top

SRB will need to be changed since they are taylored for either the shuttle or Ares 1.  SSME will need to be put into production(at what rate per year?) since you will run of the them pretty fast(3-5 flights).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 01:25 AM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Since when have these components been human-rated?

Last I heard, the shuttle doesn't fulfill any modern definition of human-rating, especially because there is no LAS.

So SLS has to go through the process of human-rating, just like every other rocket that wants to launch humans (Falcon 9 and EELV's).


Why would it take longer to make a rocket "human rated" than it took to design, build, and fly Mercury-Gemini-Apollo FIFTY YEARS AGO? 
Mercury and Gemini used existing launchers. And the budget was far bigger (adjusted for aerospace inflation). And our standard of safety is a lot higher, more paperwork required, etc.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 01:35 AM
The original ET components, avionics, SSMEs are all 'human rated'
The SRBs are (in effect) HR, with specific levels of redundancy & reliability.

The shuttle itself is not in question as it is not part of the future SLS design, only it's HR engines, which are fully qualified & we have a stockpile of.

Most of the avionics of the shuttle are uh....on the shuttle! So you need new avionics.

The ET needs to be redesigned since it will either

a. be a sidemount with different aerodynamic loads than the shuttle
b. Or be an inline desgin that must support loads from the top

SRB will need to be changed since they are taylored for either the shuttle or Ares 1.  SSME will need to be put into production(at what rate per year?) since you will run of the them pretty fast(3-5 flights).

sorry, meant SSME controller, which is on the engine.

Also, it is NOT going to be sidemount. That is (essentially) dead and burried.
16 SSMEs exist. Don't need to build any yet.
And I think the jury is out on the SRBs
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Gary NASA on 07/13/2011 01:35 AM
The original ET components, avionics, SSMEs are all 'human rated'
The SRBs are (in effect) HR, with specific levels of redundancy & reliability.

The shuttle itself is not in question as it is not part of the future SLS design, only it's HR engines, which are fully qualified & we have a stockpile of.


I assume you were asking an actual engineer, as much as I know you gained inaccurate responses from non-engineers. So let me assure you that you are absolutely correct. SSMEs, SRBs, All human rated propulsion.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/13/2011 01:36 AM


That's because Bolden checked his leadership skills at the door. There is *NO* leadership at NASA at all. It is an organization that is floundering on the rocks, drifting without goals or mission. Leaders in the space industries of foreign countries are already commenting that NASA has lost itself and is no more. The emperor has no clothes.


That will all change soon.  America is still the nation that conquered the moon and will regain that capability.

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

2.  "Drifting without goals or mission".    Constellation goals will be restored (moon, Mars etc), but with a sustainable hardware and management infrastructure.

3.  "Foreign countries are commenting that Nasa has lost itself and is no more".  Wishful thinking.  Nasa will regain its footing and enter its most productive period ever.  The opportunity rover is nearing it's 20th mile on Mars.  Anything is possible.
I don't know who you are, but that was a heck of a rallying cry. How to get AJAX before this group....(hey, I have not pitched it for several threads, got to make up for slack)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Will on 07/13/2011 01:37 AM
For me two big deals to come out of this was the admission that 1) the approved SLS design is basically an SD-HLV using ATK solid boosters (with possible competition for said boosters in the evolved SLS - who knows when/if that would ever happen), and 2) they have ignored the 2016/17 deadline for an operational 70-ton LV.

So point blank, wrt #2 above, Admin. Bolden basically said the Senate Compromise language does not work for NASA; NASA will not be working toward that deadline, or anything close.  And let me ask -- what response did this information illicit from the Committee?  Outrage?  Disappointment?



The Senate has directed NASA to get a quart into a pint pot and NASA has informed them that they can't get a quart into a pint pot.

I agree that the Senate language does direct NASA to put ten pounds of, er, suger, into a five pound bag.  My problem with NASA is they are not being explicit about it (to the extent I would like to hear/see), and just calling a spade a spade.  If NASA believes that SLS is not doable within a certain prescribed budget and/or timeframe, they need to advocate for 1) a better budget, or 2) a different solution.  That's what I'd like to see instead of the current game being played.

Bolden is in a difficult position, since Congress controls funding, and rubbing their nose in their self-serving folly can be counterproductive.

From the paraphrase, he seems to be pretty clear that a 2016 schedule for an operational Orion on SLS cannot happen because the funding is insufficient and because Congress has mandated a SLS with the maximum preservation of Shuttle infrastructure, begun long before there is a mission that requires it.

He has already put forward a different solution: defer building an HLV until it is needed.

Congress has mandated building one as soon as possible, and written the legislation so that NASA can build any design they like, as long as it is virtually indistinguishable from an Ares V.

Bolden's best response is what he gave: if that is what you want and that is what you are willing to pay, then this is when it will be ready.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Will on 07/13/2011 01:44 AM
2017 is not human rated. Still early 2020s for a human rated SLS (wow........that's pants).

I would love to have more money for commercial crew to help them be a success, but it's not there.

WTF? How the hell does it take 9 years to make a human rated booster out of components that are already human rated?!?!

They might as well just cancel SLS, and divert all funds into an evolved F9H. Even if it's not cheaper, it'll probably be quicker.

Congress tell NASA that they want SLS and commercial crew, then don't provide enough funding for either. Totally FUBAR. >:(

Since when have these components been human-rated?

Last I heard, the shuttle doesn't fulfill any modern definition of human-rating, especially because there is no LAS.

So SLS has to go through the process of human-rating, just like every other rocket that wants to launch humans (Falcon 9 and EELV's).

The original ET components, avionics, SSMEs are all 'human rated'
The SRBs are (in effect) HR, with specific levels of redundancy & reliability.

The shuttle itself is not in question as it is not part of the future SLS design, only it's HR engines, which are fully qualified & we have a stockpile of.

Still, previously reliable components and avionics can fail when used in a different configuration: Delta III, Ariane V, and the first Delta IVH flight.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 01:49 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/13/2011 01:54 AM
If we didn't have an ISS right now, I wonder what direction we would take.  It seems that the darn ISS is a ball and chain that will force NASA to waste the next decade doing what it's been doing for the past decade, having astronauts go around in circles maintaining the station and studying bone loss and such, with no real reason for doing so (besides vague notions of maybe actually going somewhere interesting in 20 years). 

If we're not going to do anything worthwhile until station is gone, then ISS retirement can't come soon enough!  Maybe Griffin had it right after all...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 01:57 AM
Bolden is in a difficult position, since Congress controls funding, and rubbing their nose in their self-serving folly can be counterproductive.

From the paraphrase, he seems to be pretty clear that a 2016 schedule for an operational Orion on SLS cannot happen because the funding is insufficient and because Congress has mandated a SLS with the maximum preservation of Shuttle infrastructure, begun long before there is a mission that requires it.

He has already put forward a different solution: defer building an HLV until it is needed.

Congress has mandated building one as soon as possible, and written the legislation so that NASA can build any design they like, as long as it is virtually indistinguishable from an Ares V.

Bolden's best response is what he gave: if that is what you want and that is what you are willing to pay, then this is when it will be ready.

*Choke*. How's that koolaide taste?

There's plenty of money to build what the Congress directed to be built; a design that got all the way thru PDR the first time before funding was withdrawn because they didn't want to fund NLS and EELV at the same time. There is not enough money to build what Bolden presented as the DRLV back in Jan, which was nothing more than Ares-V Classic. That is *NOT* what Congress instructed Bolden to build. What Bolden was told to build is affordable, even if the House's austerity budget got passed. The budget is *not* the problem. White House bullsh*t maneuvering is the problem.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: pathfinder_01 on 07/13/2011 01:58 AM
If we didn't have an ISS right now, I wonder what direction we would take.  It seems that the darn ISS is a ball and chain that will force NASA to waste the next decade doing what it's been doing for the past decade, having astronauts go around in circles maintaining the station and studying bone loss and such, with no real reason for doing so (besides vague notions of maybe actually going somewhere interesting in 20 years). 

If we're not going to do anything worthwhile until station is gone, then ISS retirement can't come soon enough!  Maybe Griffin had it right after all...


Ah, the ISS allows for long duration space experince something deep space flight needs but can not do atm. Sorry but Cxp lost my support when it thought that trading the ISS for 2 moon landings a year no moon base was a good deal.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/13/2011 02:01 AM

Ah, the ISS allows for long duration space experince something deep space flight needs but can not do atm. Sorry but Cxp lost my support when it thought that trading the ISS for 2 moon landings a year no moon base was a good deal.

I'm starting to think 2 moon landings a year is more interesting than "Gemini on steroids" with capsules ferrying crews up and down so they can watch spiders make webs in microgravity or whatever it is they do (at this point, I'm not exactly expecting a cure for cancer from ISS research...)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 02:05 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.
Give me a break, Chuck. You're better than this. It's not like NASA never has set-backs like that. The External Tank issues on a recent Shuttle flight come to mind.

Yes, it was a mistake to handicap Commercial Cargo with all-new launchers. But chill out a minute. SpaceX are behind schedule, but they successfully launched Falcon 9 twice and Dragon once.  Yes, it would be better to have an MPLM-on-EELV capability right now, but no one approved that when they should've.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: pathfinder_01 on 07/13/2011 02:05 AM

Ah, the ISS allows for long duration space experince something deep space flight needs but can not do atm. Sorry but Cxp lost my support when it thought that trading the ISS for 2 moon landings a year no moon base was a good deal.

I'm starting to think 2 moon landings a year is more interesting than "Gemini on steroids" with capsules ferrying crews up and down so they can watch spiders make webs in microgravity or whatever it is they do (at this point, I'm not exactly expecting a cure for cancer from ISS research...)


Sorry but actually learning to live in space is dull. 1st moon landing exciting, and poor Apollo 13 didn't get much coverage till they had a problem.  Capsules ferrying crews up and down is the start of people having the chance to go in space themselves and the ISS could host more people in long and short missions than a lunar program could.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 02:06 AM
If we didn't have an ISS right now, I wonder what direction we would take.  It seems that the darn ISS is a ball and chain that will force NASA to waste the next decade doing what it's been doing for the past decade, having astronauts go around in circles maintaining the station and studying bone loss and such, with no real reason for doing so (besides vague notions of maybe actually going somewhere interesting in 20 years). 

If we're not going to do anything worthwhile until station is gone, then ISS retirement can't come soon enough!  Maybe Griffin had it right after all...

I'm just going to post that I will refrain from making a reply to this ridiculous post.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Lars_J on 07/13/2011 02:07 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

And they [commercial guys] *still* have a better record at developing new launch systems and spacecraft than NASA. Yet congress insists on putting all of its eggs in the SLS basket. Pass the barf bag over here too.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Danderman on 07/13/2011 02:07 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

You are really giving up on capitalism because of some relatively minor technical issues? I guess if you had been around in 1961, your response to Vostok 1 would have been astonishing.

NASA just blew X billions of dollars on CxP, whereas the private sector has spent a tiny fraction of that amount. Where were you when CxP was spending all those tax dollars on fatally flawed designs?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/13/2011 02:08 AM
Bolden is in a difficult position [...]  Congress has mandated building [an HLV] as soon as possible, and written the legislation so that NASA can build any design they like, as long as it is virtually indistinguishable from an Ares V.  Bolden's best response is what he gave: if that is what you want and that is what you are willing to pay, then this is when it will be ready.

Yes, it was a tough position, especially because Congress made it clear they didn't want to hear what NASA can't do!  But Bolden should have told Congress what NASA could do with the available budget and within the available time.  He should have said, "NASA can give you an SLS that carries 77.211 metric tons to LEO in 2016, but then that design tops out at 118.658 metric tons even with a J-2X upper stage and five segment boosters.  Will you accept that?"

Instead he fell into the "monster rocket" trap and is consequently choosing not to have that legally mandated conversation with Congress.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 02:09 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

26 Atlas V flight successful
15 Delta IV flights successful

Me thinks you are ignoring a good chunk of commercial
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/13/2011 02:09 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

And they [commercial guys] *still* have a better record at developing new launch systems and spacecraft than NASA. Yet congress insists on putting all of its eggs in the SLS basket. Pass the barf bag over here too.

We get your bias, but did you really just make a faith statement on companies that have launched a total of zero humans against an agency which has been doing it for decades.

And people cry "we're not anti-NASA" but slip up with comments like above.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/13/2011 02:10 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

26 Atlas V flight successful
15 Delta IV flights successful

Me thinks you are ignoring a good chunk of commercial

How many humans? 0.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 02:14 AM
You are really giving up on capitalism because of some relatively minor technical issues?

No, I'm not but your statement displays that you don't know what those so-called "minor" issues are. Not only are they not minor but they are being hushed up. That's the part I don't like. I got sick of that from NASA and expected better than that from SpaceX and Orbital.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 02:15 AM


That's because Bolden checked his leadership skills at the door. There is *NO* leadership at NASA at all. It is an organization that is floundering on the rocks, drifting without goals or mission. Leaders in the space industries of foreign countries are already commenting that NASA has lost itself and is no more. The emperor has no clothes.


That will all change soon.  America is still the nation that conquered the moon and will regain that capability.

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

2.  "Drifting without goals or mission".    Constellation goals will be restored (moon, Mars etc), but with a sustainable hardware and management infrastructure.

3.  "Foreign countries are commenting that Nasa has lost itself and is no more".  Wishful thinking.  Nasa will regain its footing and enter its most productive period ever.  The opportunity rover is nearing it's 20th mile on Mars.  Anything is possible.
I don't know who you are, but that was a heck of a rallying cry. How to get AJAX before this group....(hey, I have not pitched it for several threads, got to make up for slack)

It was a rallying cry to an empty room.  or at least, a very small audience. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: rjholling on 07/13/2011 02:17 AM
If we didn't have an ISS right now, I wonder what direction we would take.  It seems that the darn ISS is a ball and chain that will force NASA to waste the next decade doing what it's been doing for the past decade, having astronauts go around in circles maintaining the station and studying bone loss and such, with no real reason for doing so (besides vague notions of maybe actually going somewhere interesting in 20 years). 

If we're not going to do anything worthwhile until station is gone, then ISS retirement can't come soon enough!  Maybe Griffin had it right after all...
You are really stepping on a lot of toes with this post.  The ISS is essential to any kind of BEO activity because it is there where we are learning how to live in space for significant duration without actually being so far away as to have no recourse if something bad were to happen.  In terms of non-human related research, you should read up on things like metallic foam which are being researched on ISS.  The research being performed there opens the possibility of creating entire industries based on construction of products which can only be manufactured in microgravity.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 02:18 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

26 Atlas V flight successful
15 Delta IV flights successful

Me thinks you are ignoring a good chunk of commercial

How many humans? 0.

How many humans has SLS Launched? 
Hell, how many times has SLS period? 

putting a relatively basic spacecraft on top of an existing rocket (which has been cleared to launch satellites for the DOD) is not some sort of monumental jump. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: pathfinder_01 on 07/13/2011 02:18 AM
You are really giving up on capitalism because of some relatively minor technical issues?

No, I'm not but your statement displays that you don't know what those so-called "minor" issues are. Not only are they not minor but they are being hushed up. That's the part I don't like. I got sick of that from NASA and expected better than that from SpaceX and Orbital.

Hushed up how? We all know the engine blew for Taurus II. We all know that Space X is about 2 years behind but they are now at a point where they can start launching.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/13/2011 02:20 AM

We all know that Space X is about 2 years behind but they are now at a point where they can start launching.


They are?  When is the next Dragon launch?  Will it even be this year?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 02:22 AM
Hushed up how? We all know the engine blew for Taurus II. We all know that Space X is about 2 years behind but they are now at a point where they can start launching.

Yea but you obviously don't know why the engine blew and you don't know what happened to the F9 1st stage. Why don't you know? Because they're being covered up. Ask around.

G'nite all. See ya tomorrow.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/13/2011 02:24 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

26 Atlas V flight successful
15 Delta IV flights successful

Me thinks you are ignoring a good chunk of commercial

How many humans? 0.

How many humans has SLS Launched? 
Hell, how many times has SLS period? 



Shuttle technology? Which IS what SLS will be made from. 135 missions of crews from 2 to 7.

You're not really defending your point, and your second question made no sense, but if you mean how many times launched? 135
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: JMS on 07/13/2011 02:26 AM
Quote
Posted by: vt_hokie


They are?  When is the next Dragon launch?  Will it even be this year?

Once again, what's your rush. It's critical they get this next flight right. Enormous pressure. Patience grasshopper...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/13/2011 02:27 AM
Hushed up how? We all know the engine blew for Taurus II. We all know that Space X is about 2 years behind but they are now at a point where they can start launching.

Yea but you obviously don't know why the engine blew and you don't know what happened to the F9 1st stage. Why don't you know? Because they're being covered up. Ask around.

What's being covered up about the stage? They would have liked to recover it, but the TPS wasn't enough and it burned up in the atmosphere. It joins the list of every other liquid first stage in history as being unrecovered.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/13/2011 02:31 AM
Quote
Posted by: vt_hokie


They are?  When is the next Dragon launch?  Will it even be this year?

Once again, what's your rush. It's critical they get this next flight right. Enormous pressure. Patience grasshopper...

Not too concerned about our $100 billion investment being staved of supplies this time next year?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/13/2011 02:32 AM
Quote
Posted by: vt_hokie


They are?  When is the next Dragon launch?  Will it even be this year?

Once again, what's your rush. It's critical they get this next flight right. Enormous pressure. Patience grasshopper...

Not too concerned about our $100 billion investment being staved of supplies this time next year?

That's why NASA flew 135.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/13/2011 02:33 AM
Quote
Posted by: vt_hokie


They are?  When is the next Dragon launch?  Will it even be this year?

Once again, what's your rush. It's critical they get this next flight right. Enormous pressure. Patience grasshopper...

Not too concerned about our $100 billion investment being staved of supplies this time next year?

That's why maybe it's better Dragon flies sooner - if it's gonna fail, better to fail before we lose any hope of extending shuttle!  (Yeah, I know it's probably already too late...)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 02:34 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

26 Atlas V flight successful
15 Delta IV flights successful

Me thinks you are ignoring a good chunk of commercial

How many humans? 0.

How many humans has SLS Launched? 
Hell, how many times has SLS period? 



Shuttle technology? Which IS what SLS will be made from. 135 missions of crews from 2 to 7.

You're not really defending your point, and your second question made no sense, but if you mean how many times launched? 135

By that same token, then, Atlas has launched 4 people to orbit - John Glenn, Scott Carpenter, Wally Schirra and Gordon Cooper
 
Just because its based on shuttle technology doesn't mean it is the shuttle.  Going to SLS (assuming it ends up being shuttle based, which it may not - I'll still be rooting for a full and open commercial competition until they formally announce something) is not something you can just snap your fingers at. 

In short - number of people flown on SLS - 0
Number of times SLS has launched - 0

Shuttle is not SLS
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: neilh on 07/13/2011 02:35 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/13/2011 02:35 AM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

26 Atlas V flight successful
15 Delta IV flights successful

Me thinks you are ignoring a good chunk of commercial

How many humans? 0.

How many humans has SLS Launched? 
Hell, how many times has SLS period? 



Shuttle technology? Which IS what SLS will be made from. 135 missions of crews from 2 to 7.

You're not really defending your point, and your second question made no sense, but if you mean how many times launched? 135

By that same token, then, Atlas has launched 4 people to orbit - John Glenn, Scott Carpenter, Wally Schirra and Gordon Cooper

Great! Four people before most of us were born. Sign me up! ;)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: rjholling on 07/13/2011 02:36 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.
I'll say.  Pretty off topic too.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 02:37 AM
Hushed up how? We all know the engine blew for Taurus II. We all know that Space X is about 2 years behind but they are now at a point where they can start launching.

Yea but you obviously don't know why the engine blew and you don't know what happened to the F9 1st stage. Why don't you know? Because they're being covered up. Ask around.

G'nite all. See ya tomorrow.



FYI pretty sure that Orbital thing was not supposed to be out in the open yet but you would know better than I about this.

Regarding F9 S1 pretty sure the problems have been parachute related not re entry related?

Anyway, will start a thread on it tomorrow Chuck so you can share what you know about this, I would be interested to hear more but not on this thread.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Longhorn John on 07/13/2011 02:37 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

Not really. Just the usual six people who spam threads to try and make it seem everyone wants NASA to end and want Elon to be president.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 02:38 AM
Hushed up how? We all know the engine blew for Taurus II. We all know that Space X is about 2 years behind but they are now at a point where they can start launching.

Yea but you obviously don't know why the engine blew and you don't know what happened to the F9 1st stage. Why don't you know? Because they're being covered up. Ask around.

G'nite all. See ya tomorrow.



FYI pretty sure that Orbital thing was not supposed to be out in the open yet but you would know better than I about this.

Regarding F9 S1 pretty sure the problems have been parachute related not re entry related?

There are threads for that kind of thing, PEOPLE.

This is the SLS disaster thread. Keep the car crash on topic please.  ;)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 02:40 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

Not really. Just the usual six people who spam threads to try and make it seem everyone wants NASA to end and want Elon to be president.

Agreed. Also the same group who seems to think they can say Atlas is a manned capable vehicle because a design that is TOTALLY different in every way from the current Atlas 5 once carried 4 men.


@A_Polispace I cannot believe you even said that. That's so wrong from an engineering standpoint........... I just am not going to even waste my time addressing that.The fact that you did that shows you have little to no technical knowledge whatsoever.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/13/2011 02:41 AM
NASA just blew X billions of dollars on CxP, whereas the private sector has spent a tiny fraction of that amount. Where were you when CxP was spending all those tax dollars on fatally flawed designs?

Although I think Chuck's comments may be a result of being rather angry at the moment, I will address your specific question as to "where were you":

Chuck was at the fore, trying to inform people of the impending mess and trying to find a politically workable, technically achievable, and sustainable solution.

He has spent five years and thousands of dollars of his own personal savings, trying to fix the mess created by CxP -- for no reward at all except trying to get a program that has a real chance of working.

And he isn't the only one.   I have had the distinct pleasure of having lead 90+ people who have been doing exactly the same over this last half-decade.   I can assure you that Chuck has worked his ass off trying to fix CxP's mess.   He has worked far harder on this, than most people I know.

Ross.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 02:42 AM
Hushed up how? We all know the engine blew for Taurus II. We all know that Space X is about 2 years behind but they are now at a point where they can start launching.

Yea but you obviously don't know why the engine blew and you don't know what happened to the F9 1st stage. Why don't you know? Because they're being covered up. Ask around.

G'nite all. See ya tomorrow.



FYI pretty sure that Orbital thing was not supposed to be out in the open yet but you would know better than I about this.

Regarding F9 S1 pretty sure the problems have been parachute related not re entry related?

There are threads for that kind of thing, PEOPLE.

This is the SLS disaster thread. Keep the car crash on topic please.  ;)

Changed my comment :D
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 02:45 AM
NASA just blew X billions of dollars on CxP, whereas the private sector has spent a tiny fraction of that amount. Where were you when CxP was spending all those tax dollars on fatally flawed designs?

Although I think Chuck's comments may be a result of being rather angry at the moment, I will address your specific question as to "where were you":

Chuck was at the fore, trying to inform people of the impending mess and trying to find a politically workable, technically achievable, and sustainable solution.

He has spent five years and thousands of dollars of his own personal savings, trying to fix the mess created by CxP -- for no reward at all except trying to get a program that has a real chance of working.

And he isn't the only one.   I have had the distinct pleasure of having lead 90+ people who have been doing exactly the same over this last half-decade.   I can assure you that Chuck has worked his ass off trying to fix CxP's mess.   He has worked far harder on this, than most people I know.

Ross.


And the fact that this president is just trashing all that work is the reason why Chuck is not the only one who is infuriated at the moment. 

Oh but I forgot, Obama doesn't care how many people he gets fired or whose work he smashes so long as his personal agenda is fullfilled, my bad I must have thought this was the United States of America or something, can't believe I forgot  ::)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 02:47 AM

Great! Four people before most of us were born. Sign me up! ;)

I am sure Space Adventures could help you out, since they have a deal with Boeing. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Seattle Dave on 07/13/2011 02:49 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

That's why I stay in L2. Far better info, everyone is friendly and helpful almost ALL of the time, threads are spin off of documentation so a basis is established.

It's like being the VIP area of the club, compared to outside avoiding fights in the line.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 02:50 AM

Great! Four people before most of us were born. Sign me up! ;)

I am sure Space Adventures could help you out, since they have a deal with Boeing. 

When in about 20 years they have a vehicle besides SS2 to fly on or if they switch to Spacex.



Mind you Spacex is not going to man rate its vehicle unless there is a reason to do so, and right now its not looking like there will be a reason beyond ISS.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 02:50 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

Not really. Just the usual six people who spam threads to try and make it seem everyone wants NASA to end and want Elon to be president.

Agreed. Also the same group who seems to think they can say Atlas is a manned capable vehicle because a design that is TOTALLY different in every way from the current Atlas 5 once carried 4 men.


@A_Polispace I cannot believe you even said that. That's so wrong from an engineering standpoint........... I just am not going to even waste my time addressing that.The fact that you did that shows you have little to no technical knowledge whatsoever.

Your choice - I won't force my opinions on people (although don't assume I am going away, by any strech). 

However, just as you have problems with the proposed commercial option, I have serious problems with trusting NASA, particularly when it comes to the issues of budget and development.  Doing the changes  that people are talking about, while I grant are less than a clean sheet vehicle, are not nothing, and I don't believe it will be as easy. 

We've been down this road more than once.  Forgive me for not buying what is being sold. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 02:54 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

Not really. Just the usual six people who spam threads to try and make it seem everyone wants NASA to end and want Elon to be president.

Agreed. Also the same group who seems to think they can say Atlas is a manned capable vehicle because a design that is TOTALLY different in every way from the current Atlas 5 once carried 4 men.


@A_Polispace I cannot believe you even said that. That's so wrong from an engineering standpoint........... I just am not going to even waste my time addressing that.The fact that you did that shows you have little to no technical knowledge whatsoever.

Your choice - I won't force my opinions on people (although don't assume I am going away, by any strech). 

However, just as you have problems with the proposed commercial option, I have serious problems with trusting NASA, particularly when it comes to the issues of budget and development.  Doing the changes  that people are talking about, while I grant are less than a clean sheet vehicle, are not nothing, and I don't believe it will be as easy. 

We've been down this road more than once.  Forgive me for not buying what is being sold. 


Your really starting to aggravate me because you are CLEARLY not reading my posts. I have absolutely no problem with the commercial option I have a problem with a nonplan that fails to utilize that option in favor of smoke and mirrors and fancy speeches about things that will never happen

If you actually took the time to read what people post then maybe you would know I have been expressing disgust for House republicans wanting to cut commercial items and other research items in the new Auth. Bill.


Oh and by the way, there is no independent cost estimate, that already occured as part of the RAC studies unless you really think Mrs. Garver and Mr. Bolden would ACTUALLY be inept enough to not include that as part of the studies, state that they would be ready on the 8th, and then mysteriously not have any information AGAIN at yet another major legal deadline.

You can choose to wear blinders if you want, I won't stop you, but I will challenge your blinder-view based posts all day and all night.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 02:55 AM

Great! Four people before most of us were born. Sign me up! ;)

I am sure Space Adventures could help you out, since they have a deal with Boeing. 

When in about 20 years they have a vehicle besides SS2 to fly on or if they switch to Spacex.

Mind you Spacex is not going to man rate its vehicle unless there is a reason to do so, and right now its not looking like there will be a reason beyond ISS.

1.  You are mixing Space Adventures with Virgin Galactic.  (me thinks a comment about stones and glass houses would be appropriate).  SA already put 7 people in orbit on ISS.  Although Virgin does have a deal with SNC (or at least, I think they did).

2.  Sorry, but all data would seem to indicate that 2nd point is not true. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 02:58 AM

Great! Four people before most of us were born. Sign me up! ;)

I am sure Space Adventures could help you out, since they have a deal with Boeing. 

When in about 20 years they have a vehicle besides SS2 to fly on or if they switch to Spacex.

Mind you Spacex is not going to man rate its vehicle unless there is a reason to do so, and right now its not looking like there will be a reason beyond ISS.

1.  You are mixing Space Adventures with Virgin Galactic.  (me thinks a comment about stones and glass houses would be appropriate).  SA already put 7 people in orbit on ISS.  Although Virgin does have a deal with SNC (or at least, I think they did).

2.  Sorry, but all data would seem to indicate that 2nd point is not true. 

2. Wrong Spacex is only now working on the LAS for Dragon to make it manned because of NASA provided funding on the commercial crew intiative so I highly doubt they would have done it, at least in the next 7-9 years, if not for the fact that they see the chance to get the commercial crew contracts. So its basically only for NASA in the next 10 years

1. No I am not, no one said space adventures couldn't partner with other companies.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: STS Tony on 07/13/2011 02:59 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

That's why I stay in L2. Far better info, everyone is friendly and helpful almost ALL of the time, threads are spin off of documentation so a basis is established.

It's like being the VIP area of the club, compared to outside avoiding fights in the line.

Right on, brother.

On this thread and the hearing. Good to see a large attendance. But I don't see them at any point accepting Bolden's responses. They asked him, he gave answers, but no one said that was the end of it.

What happens next?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 03:00 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

That's why I stay in L2. Far better info, everyone is friendly and helpful almost ALL of the time, threads are spin off of documentation so a basis is established.

It's like being the VIP area of the club, compared to outside avoiding fights in the line.

Right on, brother.

On this thread and the hearing. Good to see a large attendance. But I don't see them at any point accepting Bolden's responses. They asked him, he gave answers, but no one said that was the end of it.

What happens next?

Senate hearings and legal action as chuck stated in a previous post and I repeated many times on this thread. That is, if they are going to enforce their own laws.

If not, then maybe nothing but more hearings like this one with no results.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Will on 07/13/2011 03:02 AM
Bolden is in a difficult position, since Congress controls funding, and rubbing their nose in their self-serving folly can be counterproductive.

From the paraphrase, he seems to be pretty clear that a 2016 schedule for an operational Orion on SLS cannot happen because the funding is insufficient and because Congress has mandated a SLS with the maximum preservation of Shuttle infrastructure, begun long before there is a mission that requires it.

He has already put forward a different solution: defer building an HLV until it is needed.

Congress has mandated building one as soon as possible, and written the legislation so that NASA can build any design they like, as long as it is virtually indistinguishable from an Ares V.

Bolden's best response is what he gave: if that is what you want and that is what you are willing to pay, then this is when it will be ready.

*Choke*. How's that koolaide taste?

There's plenty of money to build what the Congress directed to be built; a design that got all the way thru PDR the first time before funding was withdrawn because they didn't want to fund NLS and EELV at the same time.

The Senate Launch System is not NLS-1. NLS-1 didn't meet the arbitrary standards of 70 tonnes to LEO for initial capacity. It wasn't required to simultaneously develop an upper stage, or keep a J2-x upper stage engine in development regardless of need, or show a sensible path to an evolved version lifting 130 tonnes to LEO, or maintain all existing  infrastructure and contractor relationships unless doing so was completely impossible.

NLS-1 was designed to launch payloads. SLS was designed to preserve existing aerospace jobs in key districts
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 03:03 AM
Wow, a lot of mudflinging in this thread.

Not really. Just the usual six people who spam threads to try and make it seem everyone wants NASA to end and want Elon to be president.

Agreed. Also the same group who seems to think they can say Atlas is a manned capable vehicle because a design that is TOTALLY different in every way from the current Atlas 5 once carried 4 men.


@A_Polispace I cannot believe you even said that. That's so wrong from an engineering standpoint........... I just am not going to even waste my time addressing that.The fact that you did that shows you have little to no technical knowledge whatsoever.

Your choice - I won't force my opinions on people (although don't assume I am going away, by any strech). 

However, just as you have problems with the proposed commercial option, I have serious problems with trusting NASA, particularly when it comes to the issues of budget and development.  Doing the changes  that people are talking about, while I grant are less than a clean sheet vehicle, are not nothing, and I don't believe it will be as easy. 

We've been down this road more than once.  Forgive me for not buying what is being sold. 


Your really starting to aggravate me because you are CLEARLY not reading my posts. I have absolutely no problem with the commercial option I have a problem with a nonplan that fails to utilize that option in favor of smoke and mirrors and fancy speeches about things that will never happen

If you actually took the time to read what people post then maybe you would know I have been expressing disgust for House republicans wanting to cut commercial items and other research items in the new Auth. Bill.

So, would you accept an SLS design that was entirely commercial based?  Say a super-EELV? 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Political Hack Wannabe on 07/13/2011 03:11 AM


1.  You are mixing Space Adventures with Virgin Galactic.  (me thinks a comment about stones and glass houses would be appropriate).  SA already put 7 people in orbit on ISS.  Although Virgin does have a deal with SNC (or at least, I think they did).

2.  Sorry, but all data would seem to indicate that 2nd point is not true. 

2. Wrong Spacex is only now working on the LAS for Dragon to make it manned because of NASA provided funding on the commercial crew intiative so I highly doubt they would have done it, at least in the next 7-9 years, if not for the fact that they see the chance to get the commercial crew contracts. So its basically only for NASA in the next 10 years

1. No I am not, no one said space adventures couldn't partner with other companies.

1.  I'll grant SA can partner with whoever they want.  However, you said,
Quote
When in about 20 years they have a vehicle besides SS2 to fly on or if they switch to Spacex.


Space Adventures is in no way involved with SpaceShipTwo.  That would be Virgin Galactic.  I suppose in theory they could get some from Scaled, but my suspicion is that there is an exclusive deal between Scaled & Virgin (which is the reason for The SpaceShip Company).  In fact, at least at one point Space Adventures was involved with Armadillo for their sub-orbital flights (don't know the status of that). 

It'd be a bit like Boeing trying to sell Airbus's planes. 

2.  SpaceX has said that NASA is accelerating their human-rating plans, but that was ALWAYS in the cards.  I will grant, as I said, NASA's decisions have accelerated SpaceX's plans, but Falcon 9 & Dragon were always intended to be human rated. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: MrTim on 07/13/2011 03:39 AM
Can everyone calm the frak down. Honestly, it's like dealing with kids fighting over playground swings in the Space "Wild Wild West" Policy section sometimes. (snip)
With the last shuttle mission underway and the political trainwreck on full display, people (on all sides of the usual arguments) who care about human space flight are probably getting more emotional about it; There's a big emotional difference between debates over possible future disasters, and standing on the sidelines watching an actual wreck with all of the flying debris and broken bodies.

I tried to warn people back in 2008 that Obama would be a disaster for NASA; his entire political career provided all the information anybody needed if they only cared to look. I also expressed concern that the Direct team was doing something dangerous: giving opponents of NASA's human spaceflight efforts some good arguments against a real plan that was underway and bending metal. Well, here we are. The arguments against Cx allowed it to be killed with no real replacement. Obama, who has long opposed things like NASA is slow-walking things to kill the program while he dangles "commercial" as a way to get a little support for his actions from even some spaceflight backers, and people are acting surprised.

Once the NASA programs are dead and NASA's only purpose is to funnel tax dollars to "commercial" space flight providers, it will be very easy for Obama or somebody like him to kill that off as an unjustified taxpayer subsidy to the rich (much worse than any "corporate jets"). If nothing changes, within several decades social security, medicare and medicaid will consume the entire budget; this means new revenue will be needed for interest on the debt, and defense. NASA will have to fight to justify its annual operating expenses at that time. If NASA is operating things the taxpayers own, it will have an easier time than if it is just a conduit for money to rich guys like Elon Musk. That might not be fair, not happy, nor entirely rational, but people need to think about the politics of this stuff and how it will be used in campaign speeches and in ads. NASA's best insurance policy for survival has always been that US Military people were riding government-owned rockets to explore on behalf of the American people. The tie to military capabilities (not activity) always provided the needed Constitutional fig leaf. Break those political bargains and the wheels begin to wobble and the cart begins to swerve.

I have said many times that I was not a big fan of Cx, but with the J2X at stennis, DM-3 underway at ATK, the MLP at KSC, the interesting bits of Falcon news, etc it's starting to look like "the stick" really was the way to go for minimizing "the gap" given the lack of shuttle extension.

I'm betting this gets messier, and the internet arguments get hotter before the politicians sort everything out.... and for the first time in my life, I actually suspect the US will abandon Spaceflight.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: vt_hokie on 07/13/2011 03:48 AM

I tried to warn people back in 2008 that Obama would be a disaster for NASA; his entire political career provided all the information anybody needed if they only cared to look.

I was torn - Obama was a disaster for NASA, McCain would've been a disaster for Amtrak.  ;)  (McCain really wasn't a fan of passenger rail, but it would be interesting to see how the NASA situation would've played out under his leadership.) 


Quote
Once the NASA programs are dead and NASA's only purpose is to funnel tax dollars to "commercial" space flight providers, it will be very easy for Obama or somebody like him to kill that off as an unjustified taxpayer subsidy to the rich (much worse than any "corporate jets").

I have wondered what might happen if ISS were to fail prematurely for some reason.  (Considering the recent orbital debris incidents, it's not such a remote possibility.)  What would be our new focus?  Another LEO station?  Lunar missions?  Or an abandonment of human spaceflight altogether, as you suggest?  I'm afraid you are likely correct.

 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/13/2011 04:01 AM
The way I see it (and somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, because I don't have a clue about politics) is this:

Congress:
-Want SLS/MPCV
-Will cut science/technology/commercial crew to get it

White House:
-Want science/technology/commercial crew
-Will cut SLS/MPCV to get it

Result:
-Insufficient funding for SLS/MPCV
-Insufficient funding for science/technology/commercial crew
-NASA does nothing for next 10 years

Now that's what I call a viable plan! :(

Basically, Congress and the White House need to get on the same page. NASA is stuck in the middle of the two.

About right!  Clearly the White House is correct, of course.  :)

I see Congress as desiring SLS/MPCV mainly because it brings money to the Congresspeople's districts and gets them reelected, not because they've looked at the alternatives and decided that's the best way to go BEO.

And you would be wrong in that conclusion; the relative impact of SLS/MPCV work in ANY single state or district is FAR from a determining factor in any more than one or two congressional districts, at most, and in no state-wide calculus of constituent impact. Are they all concerned about constituent impacts, nevertheless?  Of course! That is a major part of their JOB. We call it a representative democracy for a very real reason--an important part of their responsibility is to advocate the interests of those they are elected to REPRESENT. How is it that is so frequently characterized as somehow inappropriate, or even borderline "corrupt"?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 04:20 AM
I agree with 51D Mascot.

What 6 Elon fanbois, by the way?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mr. mark on 07/13/2011 04:27 AM
I'd be careful what you ask for you might be one of them LOL. Seriously, I'm a proud Elon Musk fan and no I would not consider myself a fanboy but more like a fan of commercial spaceflight. I've already called out Elon Musk several times as a visionary whose plans sometimes outpace his own business reality. i am though proud of Spacex's accomplishments so far but, also realize they have a long way to go. I really like Spacex's positive vision of spaceflight's future.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/13/2011 04:32 AM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

Sorry, but we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 

Sorry, Jim, you know I have a huge issue with that statement. Augustine was singularly and fatally flawed with an arbitrary constrained flat-line budget expectation that was imposed on their deliberations by OMB. That skewed virtually everything they were able to put on the table, as Crowley made clear every time he described the outcome in remarks made after the conclusion of the report and talked about "the budget". Out-year projections and run-outs, as you know, are NOT "Budgets." "Budgets" are the outcome of the combined processes of a Request, an Authorization, a Budget Resolution, and a final appropriations. Furthermore, it is a fact that I can speak with some authority on that the 2010 Act was drafted heavily on the basis of submissions to Augustine that demonstrated the kinds of things that could be done WITHOUT those constraints, and it projected a funding profile that reflected a WORKABLE plan.

The energies of everyone who wants either commercial OR government SLS/MPCV to succeed and allow commercial expansion into LEO and government-led expansion into BEO should be directed at arguing the merits of biting the fiscal bullet and deciding to MAKE the sort of financial investment that is needed to have a space program "worthy of a great nation."

The fact that no one seems willing to take on that task--other than the authorizers who charted the path--speaks to the deepening expectation, perhaps the reality, that the "great nation" part of that equation is in doubt.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/13/2011 04:47 AM
For me two big deals to come out of this was the admission that 1) the approved SLS design is basically an SD-HLV using ATK solid boosters (with possible competition for said boosters in the evolved SLS - who knows when/if that would ever happen), and 2) they have ignored the 2016/17 deadline for an operational 70-ton LV.

So point blank, wrt #2 above, Admin. Bolden basically said the Senate Compromise language does not work for NASA; NASA will not be working toward that deadline, or anything close.  And let me ask -- what response did this information illicit from the Committee?  Outrage?  Disappointment?



The Senate has directed NASA to get a quart into a pint pot and NASA has informed them that they can't get a quart into a pint pot.

Actually, neither is true. And especially the latter point. NASA has not yet "informed" Congress officially what they can get into any size of pot. They were supposed to do that in the 90-day Section 309 report which is STILL incomplete beyond the "Preliminary" version they cobbled together on January 11th. And that followed 29 different drafts and redrafts of even that "preliminary" report which I assure you reflect VERY CLEARLY the degree to which efforts were made, and the identity of those who made them--to dilute the initially more clear and definitive draft that initially went into that review process. Notwithstanding all of that, the real proof of the pudding is in the subsequent work done to meet the requirements of that report, culminating in the June 20th documents Chris has mentioned. Until that is made public, you cannot characterize accurately what the current position, as of June 20th, was and is. The entire focus of the investigation and request for documentation is intended to inform the Congress as to that entire evolution of internal discussions leading to the final decision on the vehicle concept and development approach that can work and meet the requirements of the law and, more importantly than "compliance", lead to a US human spaceflight program that can be made to WORK and provide a balanced approach of commercial and government efforts to maximize commercial opportunities in LEO and enable the establishment and realization of goals for exploration beyond earth orbit.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Lars_J on 07/13/2011 05:06 AM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

Sorry, but we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 

Sorry, Jim, you know I have a huge issue with that statement. Augustine was singularly and fatally flawed with an arbitrary constrained flat-line budget expectation that was imposed on their deliberations by OMB. That skewed virtually everything they were able to put on the table, as Crowley made clear every time he described the outcome in remarks made after the conclusion of the report and talked about "the budget". Out-year projections and run-outs, as you know, are NOT "Budgets." "Budgets" are the outcome of the combined processes of a Request, an Authorization, a Budget Resolution, and a final appropriations. Furthermore, it is a fact that I can speak with some authority on that the 2010 Act was drafted heavily on the basis of submissions to Augustine that demonstrated the kinds of things that could be done WITHOUT those constraints, and it projected a funding profile that reflected a WORKABLE plan.

The energies of everyone who wants either commercial OR government SLS/MPCV to succeed and allow commercial expansion into LEO and government-led expansion into BEO should be directed at arguing the merits of biting the fiscal bullet and deciding to MAKE the sort of financial investment that is needed to have a space program "worthy of a great nation."

The fact that no one seems willing to take on that task--other than the authorizers who charted the path--speaks to the deepening expectation, perhaps the reality, that the "great nation" part of that equation is in doubt.

I have to admit that I am frankly quite stunned that you, 51D Mascot, whose opinion carries a lot of weight, believe that it space policy should be set with the expectations of rising NASA budgets. (unless I misunderstand you) That - to me - seems like a living in denial. Do you want a working, practical, and successful space exploration plan? Then you need to be a realist and plan in a responsible fashion.

Augistine was in many ways a reaction to the failure of CxP and it's "sandchart" budgeting. Yes, budgets are a lot more complicated than a plain sum figure handed over to NASA, but one needs to be a realist.

No person should make investments on what they "hope" their salary will be in a few years, which is essentially what CxP did. You plan and purchase based on what you are earning now. Government agency planning should use the same principle.

Again, apologies if I misunderstood.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: alexw on 07/13/2011 05:08 AM
This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!
Sorry, but we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 
Sorry, Jim, you know I have a huge issue with that statement. Augustine was singularly and fatally flawed with an arbitrary constrained flat-line budget expectation that was imposed on their deliberations by OMB. That skewed virtually everything they were able to put on the table, as Crowley made clear every time he described the outcome in remarks made after the conclusion of the report and talked about "the budget". Out-year projections and run-outs, as you know, are NOT "Budgets." "Budgets" are the outcome of the combined processes of a Request, an Authorization, a Budget Resolution, and a final appropriations. Furthermore, it is a fact that I can speak with some authority on that the 2010 Act was drafted heavily on the basis of submissions to Augustine that demonstrated the kinds of things that could be done WITHOUT those constraints, and it projected a funding profile that reflected a WORKABLE plan.
     Augustine was fatally flawed because it assumed a flat-line budget? Didn't they actually say that a $3 billion plus-up was necessary? And you're saying that the 2010 (Senate) Act was better than Augustine because it demonstrated that (more) could be done "without those constraints"?
   
   It's hardly surprising that NASA could do more if it got even larger budgets than Augustine said was needed at minimum!

    Could you clarify your point?
            -Alex
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/13/2011 05:36 AM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

Sorry, but we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 

Sorry, Jim, you know I have a huge issue with that statement. Augustine was singularly and fatally flawed with an arbitrary constrained flat-line budget expectation that was imposed on their deliberations by OMB. That skewed virtually everything they were able to put on the table, as Crowley made clear every time he described the outcome in remarks made after the conclusion of the report and talked about "the budget". Out-year projections and run-outs, as you know, are NOT "Budgets." "Budgets" are the outcome of the combined processes of a Request, an Authorization, a Budget Resolution, and a final appropriations. Furthermore, it is a fact that I can speak with some authority on that the 2010 Act was drafted heavily on the basis of submissions to Augustine that demonstrated the kinds of things that could be done WITHOUT those constraints, and it projected a funding profile that reflected a WORKABLE plan.

The energies of everyone who wants either commercial OR government SLS/MPCV to succeed and allow commercial expansion into LEO and government-led expansion into BEO should be directed at arguing the merits of biting the fiscal bullet and deciding to MAKE the sort of financial investment that is needed to have a space program "worthy of a great nation."

The fact that no one seems willing to take on that task--other than the authorizers who charted the path--speaks to the deepening expectation, perhaps the reality, that the "great nation" part of that equation is in doubt.

I have to admit that I am frankly quite stunned that you, 51D Mascot, whose opinion carries a lot of weight, believe that it space policy should be set with the expectations of rising NASA budgets. (unless I misunderstand you) That - to me - seems like a living in denial. Do you want a working, practical, and successful space exploration plan? Then you need to be a realist and plan in a responsible fashion.

Augistine was in many ways a reaction to the failure of CxP and it's "sandchart" budgeting. Yes, budgets are a lot more complicated than a plain sum figure handed over to NASA, but one needs to be a realist.

No person should make investments on what they "hope" their salary will be in a few years, which is essentially what CxP did. You plan and purchase based on what you are earning now. Government agency planning should use the same principle.

Again, apologies if I misunderstood.

Yeah, I think maybe you do misunderstand, likely because I may not have expressed it properly. Believe me, I am all too familiar with the perceived "realities" of potential budget futures. I just refuse to believe that there is no scenario or possibility by which the potential loss of value to the nation in the long run that results from assumptions of flat-line funding for NASA could actually evolve into a consensus that MORE needs to be provided than has been "accepted" as the inevitable constraints, in perpetuity. I fundamentally believe that as long as expectations of budget stagnation--however well-founded those expectations may seem on the basis of recent history--are taken as unassailable givens, that space policy driven by budget is a formula for disaster--not a concession to "reality." Call it naive, tilting at windmills, whatever else you want to say, I believe it--and state it--more as a simple statement of belief that a combination of leadership and an understanding of the true potential for return on investment of tax dollars (readily demonstrated by any review of the past fifty years of positive economic and technological impact attributable, even in part, to the US space program) COULD result in a change in the perception of the "value proposition" for space programs that could lead to a place where the positive direction of space policy outcomes could be the driver behind the space debate, instead of the debate being shaped and limited by what "the budget will bear." Budgets and priorities are the result of CHOICES, not immutable FACTS. We once called that approach "Leadership." I just happen to believe it could work again.

Having said that, I believe the results of the SLS decision process that has been undertaken over the past seven to eight months has actually produced an approach that IS realistic and CAN be made to fit even within the arbitrarily--you would say, I suppose, "inevitable and unalterable--accepted constraints. We will hopefully know, soon enough, whether I really am seeing what I believe I am seeing in the materials I have at hand, and believing what I believe I am being told by those charged with producing the kind of technical solution that gets us on a workable path to a viable human space flight program. I DO accept that I am in DENIAL of assertions that this nation simply cannot "afford" to provide the needed resources for a strong and vibrant space program. I just don't--and won't ever--concede to that as an inevitable reality. That's frankly the primary factor that keeps me doing what I am doing despite a LOT of reasons I could otherwise have for simply packing it in and having a far more stress-free and comfortable life-style, so please allow me my delusions, if that's what you want to insist they are, hehe.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/13/2011 05:47 AM
This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!
Sorry, but we had a broad discussion, with input from the entire space community.  That is what Augustine was.  And FY 2011 was entirely built around Augustine. 
Sorry, Jim, you know I have a huge issue with that statement. Augustine was singularly and fatally flawed with an arbitrary constrained flat-line budget expectation that was imposed on their deliberations by OMB. That skewed virtually everything they were able to put on the table, as Crowley made clear every time he described the outcome in remarks made after the conclusion of the report and talked about "the budget". Out-year projections and run-outs, as you know, are NOT "Budgets." "Budgets" are the outcome of the combined processes of a Request, an Authorization, a Budget Resolution, and a final appropriations. Furthermore, it is a fact that I can speak with some authority on that the 2010 Act was drafted heavily on the basis of submissions to Augustine that demonstrated the kinds of things that could be done WITHOUT those constraints, and it projected a funding profile that reflected a WORKABLE plan.
     Augustine was fatally flawed because it assumed a flat-line budget? Didn't they actually say that a $3 billion plus-up was necessary? And you're saying that the 2010 (Senate) Act was better than Augustine because it demonstrated that (more) could be done "without those constraints"?
   
   It's hardly surprising that NASA could do more if it got even larger budgets than Augustine said was needed at minimum!

    Could you clarify your point?
            -Alex

Nope. Not really interested in doing so. It's my opinion, not a "point," though I would suggest I believe I have listened to a lot more briefings, and explanations and discussions and meetings about the Augustine report and findings than a lot of folks, which form the basis for that opinion, and I'm simply not willing to take the time or energy to outline all of that. Once in a while I just feel like making assertions, as is a well-established tradition in the "blogosphere," or whatever you want to call this medium of exchange. Take them or leave them as you choose. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: notsorandom on 07/13/2011 06:00 AM
We will hopefully know, soon enough, whether I really am seeing what I believe I am seeing in the materials I have at hand, and believing what I believe I am being told by those charged with producing the kind of technical solution that gets us on a workable path to a viable human space flight program.
Am I reading that correctly that you have some information that has not been made public? Did NASA deliver the drafts and or the SLS plan Administrator Bolden singed off on to the Senate?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: PlanetStorm on 07/13/2011 08:56 AM

So, yet again, I ask why you and others who are so sure of the answer yet seemingly so afraid to ask the questions of:

1.  What are the mission scope(s)
2.  What is the architecture(s)
3.  What are the destination(s)
4.  What are the time table(s)

in order to prove, once and for all, if an SLS-class and other launchers or just other launchers by themselves gives the lowest total per mission cost.

I don't think there would've been such an outcry had Obama said we're going to use existing launch vehicles to venture beyond LEO within 5 - 10 years, but instead he's keeping us relegated to LEO for more than a decade.  That is unacceptable, imo.  (And yes, I think SLS/MPCV exploration missions failing to occur this decade is unacceptable too.  This clearly isn't the same great country that accomplished Apollo within a decade starting from scratch.)

It would never be the job of any president.  It is the job of NASA.  NASA has refused to do with a SLS and without SLS.  The question people should be asking is "why", not pointing at others with shakey conclusions suggesting they are to blame for ones lot in life. 

OV106, I agree with you that it would be very enlightening to have the answers to the question you are asking (what can NASA do with an SLS system versus what can it do without one?). I've followed the endlessly circling discussions for what seems like forever, and as far as I can see, this question has never been fully adressed, although many people have been prepared to guess.

I personally have come to the conclusion that in the absence of a detailed comparison, it makes absolutely no sense to push ahead with developing an SLS vehicle or architecture. Surely the default position must be to use existing EELV class vehicles.

IMHO, obviously.



Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Calorspace on 07/13/2011 09:16 AM

I know many won't agree but I think this is the best way to go.

They want SLS because their states are involved in terms of jobs, whereas Obama actually has a vision for space flight which I think is quite good. If it means using these methods to get their way then so be it. The more they drag their feet, the more they delay the SLS and the more chance it will never actually be built.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/13/2011 10:18 AM

I know many won't agree but I think this is the best way to go.

They want SLS because their states are involved in terms of jobs, whereas Obama actually has a vision for space flight which I think is quite good. If it means using these methods to get their way then so be it. The more they drag their feet, the more they delay the SLS and the more chance it will never actually be built.

Exactly. And then Congress will declare that "since we're not building SLS, we don't need all those billions in the NASA budget that were reserved for SLS". And cut the budget again.

Either way, we lose.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Proponent on 07/13/2011 10:49 AM
<snip>

Why would it take longer to make a rocket "human rated" than it took to design, build, and fly Mercury-Gemini-Apollo FIFTY YEARS AGO? 
Mercury and Gemini used existing launchers. And the budget was far bigger (adjusted for aerospace inflation). And our standard of safety is a lot higher, more paperwork required, etc.

And not only was the budget larger then, but NASA did not need to pay for so much legacy infrastructure, e.g., ISS at $3 billion per year.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: marsavian on 07/13/2011 10:50 AM

I know many won't agree but I think this is the best way to go.

They want SLS because their states are involved in terms of jobs, whereas Obama actually has a vision for space flight which I think is quite good. If it means using these methods to get their way then so be it. The more they drag their feet, the more they delay the SLS and the more chance it will never actually be built.

Alternatively they could think that the SLS is best for BEO exploration and that Obama has no vision apart from a continuous delay for a perfect tomorrow that will never come. Many non-involved States/Districts have Congressmen that think that way.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Proponent on 07/13/2011 11:44 AM
And you would be wrong in that conclusion; the relative impact of SLS/MPCV work in ANY single state or district is FAR from a determining factor in any more than one or two congressional districts, at most, and in no state-wide calculus of constituent impact. Are they all concerned about constituent impacts, nevertheless?  Of course! That is a major part of their JOB. We call it a representative democracy for a very real reason--an important part of their responsibility is to advocate the interests of those they are elected to REPRESENT. How is it that is so frequently characterized as somehow inappropriate, or even borderline "corrupt"?

The trouble is that the Congressional committees making space policy are dominated by senators and representatives whose constituencies include NASA centers and space contractors.  This makes it impossible to have confidence that policy is made solely in the bests interests of the nation as a whole.  It has not always been thus.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Martin FL on 07/13/2011 11:58 AM


The trouble is that the Congressional committees making space policy are dominated by senators and representatives whose constituencies include NASA centers and space contractors.  This makes it  impossible to have confidence that policy is made solely in the bests interests of the nation as a whole.  It has not always been thus.

Riiiiiiiight, but what's your point? That politicians who represent an area where they were voted in tend to fight for that area? No, tell me it's not true! ;) Replace NASA with anything else, you'd get the same answer.

The irony is, if they didn't, we wouldn't even be having this conversation as NASA would have died decades ago.

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jim on 07/13/2011 12:20 PM
it's starting to look like "the stick" really was the way to go for minimizing "the gap" given the lack of shuttle extension.


Nope, it would not reduce the gap any better that the other alternatives.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jim on 07/13/2011 12:23 PM
. NASA's best insurance policy for survival has always been that US Military people were riding government-owned rockets to explore on behalf of the American people. The tie to military capabilities (not activity) always provided the needed Constitutional fig leaf.


Wrong, close to 1/2 the astronauts are non military
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Proponent on 07/13/2011 12:55 PM
The trouble is that the Congressional committees making space policy are dominated by senators and representatives whose constituencies include NASA centers and space contractors.  This makes it impossible to have confidence that policy is made solely in the bests interests of the nation as a whole.  It has not always been thus.

Riiiiiiiight, but what's your point?

51D Mascot asks why it is perceived that there is something inappropriate or borderline corrupt about how space policy is made; I answer that such perceptions are inevitable given the dominance of the relevant Congressional committees by members having parochial interests.

Quote
That politicians who represent an area where they were voted in tend to fight for that area? No, tell me it's not true! ;) Replace NASA with anything else, you'd get the same answer.

Of course they will, and, as 51D Mascot says, that's reasonable given that their jobs are to represent their constituents' interests.  Allowing them to dominate the policy-making process, however, is bad government.  Space policy has not always been made this way.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 01:15 PM
And you would be wrong in that conclusion; the relative impact of SLS/MPCV work in ANY single state or district is FAR from a determining factor in any more than one or two congressional districts, at most, and in no state-wide calculus of constituent impact. Are they all concerned about constituent impacts, nevertheless?  Of course! That is a major part of their JOB. We call it a representative democracy for a very real reason--an important part of their responsibility is to advocate the interests of those they are elected to REPRESENT. How is it that is so frequently characterized as somehow inappropriate, or even borderline "corrupt"?

The trouble is that the Congressional committees making space policy are dominated by senators and representatives whose constituencies include NASA centers and space contractors.  This makes it impossible to have confidence that policy is made solely in the bests interests of the nation as a whole.  It has not always been thus.

And to add to what others have said: if you do a KSC tour & get a great tour guide, they make the point of asking about just where the other 'centers' are:
KSC, JSC, MSFC...they aren't there by accident: they were all politically-motivated locations to 'spread the wealth' of the spacer program.

You would ask no less of your country. It's not always efficient, and hence why they have been looking at center consolidation, but it would face enormous political pressure/interference, as this hearing showed.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mikegi on 07/13/2011 01:23 PM
Of course they will, and, as 51D Mascot says, that's reasonable given that their jobs are to represent their constituents' interests.  Allowing them to dominate the policy-making process, however, is bad government.  Space policy has not always been made this way.
I'm not sure of that. When something is new, all the Congressmen try to get a slice for their constituents, which is fine. The problem starts when we need to eliminate an existing large program. Over time, the Congress members in the districts of an existing program are most likely to have moved into positions of power/committees and therefore have a say in the elimination. Just look at DIRECT, they spent about 1/2 their time on rocket engineering and the other half on political engineering ... and that was in an effort to use mostly what already existed!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 01:28 PM
NASA just blew X billions of dollars on CxP, whereas the private sector has spent a tiny fraction of that amount. Where were you when CxP was spending all those tax dollars on fatally flawed designs?

Although I think Chuck's comments may be a result of being rather angry at the moment, I will address your specific question as to "where were you":

Chuck was at the fore, trying to inform people of the impending mess and trying to find a politically workable, technically achievable, and sustainable solution.

He has spent five years and thousands of dollars of his own personal savings, trying to fix the mess created by CxP -- for no reward at all except trying to get a program that has a real chance of working.

And he isn't the only one.   I have had the distinct pleasure of having lead 90+ people who have been doing exactly the same over this last half-decade.   I can assure you that Chuck has worked his ass off trying to fix CxP's mess.   He has worked far harder on this, than most people I know.

Ross.
DIRECT was the one program that could have closed the gap and retained most of the tooling and some of the workforce. Metal could have continued to have been bent right up until now. Unless the sole point was to achieve this while reducing the workforce as is done in other areas of manufacturing that streamline operations. The one ray of light was General Bolden’s description of the use of an SRB for early flights then opens it up for booster competition (liquid?). So in a sense we have an idea which design is roughly in place at this time.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/13/2011 01:48 PM
it's starting to look like "the stick" really was the way to go for minimizing "the gap" given the lack of shuttle extension.


Nope, it would not reduce the gap any better that the other alternatives.

Yeah, that's a good note of context. F9 and Dragon, right now, still beats Ares/Orion by two to three years, per Augustine. I remember ISS was ending 2016 at the time (itself a mistake) so Ares I/Orion would have been coming online after the ISS had been deorbited and stood around with nothing to do until the next decade. Ares I could only just lift Orion, so its not like you could do much else with it.

I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

I ask, as I can't really blame people for being wary of things because of what happened with CxP.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: PoliSpace on 07/13/2011 01:54 PM
It seems a bit ridiculous for them to come out and say that there will not be manned missions before 2020 when the law clearly states that this is to begin in 2016.  Even if there is no foul play afoot there should be an investigation as to why NASA suddenly needs 4 more years to do their job.

Now you hit upon the fine point of todays hearing.   Bolden and his team broke the law regarding use of the Orion, as mandated by the law signed in.
 
Point by point this was gone over.  The Orion was to be as a backup to the ISS if the Commercial failed.   Todays news is that Orion might not be working until 2020 and time to use for ISS.
 

Bolden never said Orion wouldn't be ready.  He said SLS wouldn't be ready.  Orion + Delta IV will be ready.  Hell, Orion + Falcon Heavy will be ready.  Just not SLS. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: PoliSpace on 07/13/2011 02:09 PM
I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com

Welcome to the forum!

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

The law says "to the extent practicable", which means if you can't do it in the budget provided, you don't have to try. 

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kkattula on 07/13/2011 02:10 PM

Bolden never said Orion wouldn't be ready.  He said SLS wouldn't be ready.  Orion + Delta IV will be ready.  Hell, Orion + Falcon Heavy will be ready.  Just not SLS. 

IMO, General Bolden carefully steered around differentiating Orion from SLS manned availability, despite being given clear opportunity to do so.

This suggests this administration is still not really interested in Orion, either.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kkattula on 07/13/2011 02:20 PM
I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com

Welcome to the forum!

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

The law says "to the extent practicable", which means if you can't do it in the budget provided, you don't have to try. 


Since the law was written with the best available advice as to what budget was required, claiming it's insufficient is a bit fraught.

Of course if you don't actually start until 6 ... 9 ... 12? months after you were supposed to, it's probably a lot easier to prove you can't meet the schedule.

Edit:  Oh, and requesting less that the Authorized amount for the very first year of the program doesn't show a lot of good faith, either:

Congress:  Build us a big rocket for $11B in 6 years.

NASA HQ:  We probably can't build an enormous rocket for $11B in 5 & 3/4 years!

Congress:  We said "big rocket".

NASA HQ:  Oh. Well we can't build a big rocket for $9B in 5 years!

Etc.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 02:47 PM

Bolden never said Orion wouldn't be ready.  He said SLS wouldn't be ready.  Orion + Delta IV will be ready.  Hell, Orion + Falcon Heavy will be ready.  Just not SLS. 

Yes, think about that for a while...amazing how that comes as a coincidence.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 02:47 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

I ask, as I can't really blame people for being wary of things because of what happened with CxP.

I can't speak for anyone other than myself, but for me my opposition to SLS is two-pronged.

One element is, as you suggest, because of the mess CxP became.  It doesn't help that a lot of the ardent SLS proponents (thought notably not all) were also full-throated CxP "there's nothing wrong here other than a stingy Congress/White House" denialists. People who really think that we would've been heading back to the Moon in short order if it wasn't for that HSF-hating, President of ours. Couple that with NASA's new-vehicle development track record over the rest of my lifetime, and I have to say that my confidence in their ability to execute on a new vehicle is pretty darned low. But yeah, I probably wouldn't have been as adamantly opposed to ESAS had it been a more DIRECT-like solution. I still don't think it was the right call, but it wasn't as much of an intelligence insulter as Ares-I was.

That said, my other reason has to do with Goals, Strategies, and Objectives.  For the goals that are important to me, and the strategies likely to put them in place, SLS just really doesn't move things forward in a useful way.  OV likes to harp on "what's the mission, what's the architecture" etc, but those are lower level concerns.  As Jeff Greason put it, what's the Goal (and do we actually agree on it), and what are the strategies that will lead to that goal.  Once we have the goal and strategy, then we can talk about objectives (missions) and tactics (architectures).  The danger is that if you focus on a strategy-less objective, you can win the battle but lose the war (reference a certain Greek leader named Pyhrrus). Tactics should be driven not just on what is the best way to achieve the specific mission and deadline, but on what best aligns with the overall goals you are trying to achieve. And for me, if the goal is some variation on enabling humanity to become a multiplanetary species, enabling the resources of space to be tapped for humanity's benefits, etc SLS just doesn't seem the right tool. Sure, it might be the "easiest" way theoretically to achieve some specific mission and deadline (get back to the Moon by 2025), but it delays developing the stuff we really need, etc.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Proponent on 07/13/2011 03:30 PM
Is there any way to watch a replay of the hearing other than the Edgeboss link on the House website?

I find Edgeboss very annoying, as I can't seem to download to a portable device, and often when I try to rewind to hear something crucial that I missed I lose the feed and have to start over again.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Peter NASA on 07/13/2011 03:38 PM
I think Jon's post is telling as it shows there's absolutely no flexibility in the anti-SLS argument. He's entitled to that, but it does not allow for a commonground to be found from "their side".

I also note the faith statements from the commercial lobby, absolutely no questioning of what has been press released on a vehicle which has not left the powerpoint, the FH, which is not just strapping three F9s together based on the numbers they are claiming, used against SLS, when it's not even SLS class.

Again, they are entitled to that opinion. I just hope people, and I expect they are on a site of this quality, come to their own conclusions.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: marsavian on 07/13/2011 03:46 PM
I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com

Welcome to the forum!

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

The law says "to the extent practicable", which means if you can't do it in the budget provided, you don't have to try. 


That sounds like a distorted interpretation of the Congress Bill as the 'practicable' refers to the architecture not the budget/schedule. I hope the Administration are not planning to use that as their defense against non-compliance because they will lose that one very quickly ;).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Lobo on 07/13/2011 03:46 PM

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

Wow, Capt. Cernan. I interviewed him once - the man is an inspiration! I've never "felt" someone down a phone line like that. I can't even describe it. The man is legend, an absolute legend.

I'd love to see Cernan get the reigns of NASA, just don't know that the next administration whoever and whenever they are there, would be that smart.

I think John Young would be a good guy too.  He's quiet, but seems to have a quiet, hard strength when I've seen interviews with him.
Throw Buzz and Neil in there to help out, and I think you'd get things done.  Imagine a House or Senate committee hearing where these idiot politicians are trying to stare down one of those living legands, and how foolish they'll look trying.
"Pardon me congressman, I didn't realize you were an expert in this field.  I've flown in space and walked on the moon...what are your credentials again?"

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/13/2011 03:55 PM

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

Wow, Capt. Cernan. I interviewed him once - the man is an inspiration! I've never "felt" someone down a phone line like that. I can't even describe it. The man is legend, an absolute legend.

I'd love to see Cernan get the reigns of NASA, just don't know that the next administration whoever and whenever they are there, would be that smart.

I doubt it would make much difference, tbh. Much as I respect Capt. Cernan, his hands would most likely be tied and he'd still be forced to spout the administration's line (or resign)...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 04:00 PM

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

Wow, Capt. Cernan. I interviewed him once - the man is an inspiration! I've never "felt" someone down a phone line like that. I can't even describe it. The man is legend, an absolute legend.

I'd love to see Cernan get the reigns of NASA, just don't know that the next administration whoever and whenever they are there, would be that smart.

I think John Young would be a good guy too.  He's quiet, but seems to have a quiet, hard strength when I've seen interviews with him.
Throw Buzz and Neil in there to help out, and I think you'd get things done.  Imagine a House or Senate committee hearing where these inaccurate politicians are trying to stare down one of those living legands, and how foolish they'll look trying.
"Pardon me congressman, I didn't realize you were an expert in this field.  I've flown in space and walked on the moon...what are your credentials again?"


Hey Lobo!
I thought they looked a bit foolish yesterday when the General pretty much said “hit me with your best shot” to paraphrase Pat Benatar. This combat Marine fighter-test pilot/command-astronaut sloughed it off like it was popcorn flicked at him. Behind General Bolden’s smile are fangs…
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: rjholling on 07/13/2011 04:08 PM
I doubt either Cernan or Young would take the job.  These are old men who don't care too much for political machinations.  Especially Cernan.  Plus.  Yes they have been to the moon, but does that make them qualified? Nope with all due respect.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/13/2011 04:11 PM

Bolden never said Orion wouldn't be ready.  He said SLS wouldn't be ready.  Orion + Delta IV will be ready.  Hell, Orion + Falcon Heavy will be ready.  Just not SLS. 

Yes, think about that for a while...amazing how that comes as a coincidence.

You can't blame Bolden for that. He is predicting the outcome based on the President's FY2012 budget. Congress is free to disagree with the funding of the President's FY2012 NASA Budget request and fund the SLS at the NASA Authorization bill level.   
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/13/2011 04:15 PM
I don't post very often (ever) here on NSF.com

Welcome to the forum!

Quote
If you keep using SRBs and other Shuttle hardware you have to keep all of that infrastructure in place and you share ZERO costs with other users

Absolutely right.  It's too bad about that law, isn't it.  Shall we just ignore it, then?

The law says "to the extent practicable", which means if you can't do it in the budget provided, you don't have to try. 

You still have to try. But if the funding isn't there, the goals of the NASA Authorization bill become incompatible with each other and hard choices need to be made which is exactly what Bolden is doing. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jagmaster on 07/13/2011 04:20 PM
I doubt either Cernan or Young would take the job.  These are old men who don't care too much for political machinations.  Especially Cernan.  Plus.  Yes they have been to the moon, but does that make them qualified? Nope with all due respect.

Yeah. I mean, there's no doubt that these men are heroes through and through. I just don't get how people seem to get all misty eyed at the thought of one of them heading up NASA. In the same way that people are confidently stating that Obama will be out in 2012, and that a GOP president will magically make it all better.

At least Aldrin has been advocating projects that aren't just a revival of Apollo.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Apollo-phill on 07/13/2011 04:27 PM
Following this thread last day or so, and if the 'statement' that NASA will not be able to fly astronauts in its 'own vehicle' before 2020 is correct (?) , by that date there is the possibility that more US citizens could have made  it past the 100 km space 'barrier' to earn title 'astronaut' than have flown on NASA missions since 1961 under the commercial sub orbital providers ?

A-P

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: robertross on 07/13/2011 04:28 PM

Bolden never said Orion wouldn't be ready.  He said SLS wouldn't be ready.  Orion + Delta IV will be ready.  Hell, Orion + Falcon Heavy will be ready.  Just not SLS. 

Yes, think about that for a while...amazing how that comes as a coincidence.

You can't blame Bolden for that. He is predicting the outcome based on the President's FY2012 budget. Congress is free to disagree with the funding of the President's FY2012 NASA Budget request and fund the SLS at the NASA Authorization bill level.   

I'm not blaming Gen. Bolden at all. I think he is the puppet in all this.

What I'm saying, is that the higher-ups are trying to play this situation, and 'possibly' (just a possibility) to give a company like SpaceX time to get their rocket far enough along to become a contender. Then when the congress sees a huge disparity between NASA & commercial, they could say: "whoa, here's an alternative".
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 04:29 PM
...Augustine was singularly and fatally flawed with an arbitrary constrained flat-line budget expectation that was imposed on their deliberations by OMB. ...

I have to admit that I am frankly quite stunned that you, 51D Mascot, whose opinion carries a lot of weight, believe that it space policy should be set with the expectations of rising NASA budgets. (unless I misunderstand you) That - to me - seems like a living in denial. Do you want a working, practical, and successful space exploration plan? Then you need to be a realist and plan in a responsible fashion.

Augistine was in many ways a reaction to the failure of CxP and it's "sandchart" budgeting. Yes, budgets are a lot more complicated than a plain sum figure handed over to NASA, but one needs to be a realist.

No person should make investments on what they "hope" their salary will be in a few years, which is essentially what CxP did. You plan and purchase based on what you are earning now. Government agency planning should use the same principle.

Again, apologies if I misunderstood.

Yeah, I think maybe you do misunderstand, likely because I may not have expressed it properly. Believe me, I am all too familiar with the perceived "realities" of potential budget futures. I just refuse to believe that there is no scenario or possibility by which the potential loss of value to the nation in the long run that results from assumptions of flat-line funding for NASA could actually evolve into a consensus that MORE needs to be provided than has been "accepted" as the inevitable constraints, in perpetuity. I fundamentally believe that as long as expectations of budget stagnation--however well-founded those expectations may seem on the basis of recent history--are taken as unassailable givens, that space policy driven by budget is a formula for disaster--not a concession to "reality." Call it naive, tilting at windmills, whatever else you want to say, I believe it--and state it--more as a simple statement of belief that a combination of leadership and an understanding of the true potential for return on investment of tax dollars (readily demonstrated by any review of the past fifty years of positive economic and technological impact attributable, even in part, to the US space program) COULD result in a change in the perception of the "value proposition" for space programs that could lead to a place where the positive direction of space policy outcomes could be the driver behind the space debate, instead of the debate being shaped and limited by what "the budget will bear." Budgets and priorities are the result of CHOICES, not immutable FACTS. We once called that approach "Leadership." I just happen to believe it could work again.

Having said that, I believe the results of the SLS decision process that has been undertaken over the past seven to eight months has actually produced an approach that IS realistic and CAN be made to fit even within the arbitrarily--you would say, I suppose, "inevitable and unalterable--accepted constraints. We will hopefully know, soon enough, whether I really am seeing what I believe I am seeing in the materials I have at hand, and believing what I believe I am being told by those charged with producing the kind of technical solution that gets us on a workable path to a viable human space flight program. I DO accept that I am in DENIAL of assertions that this nation simply cannot "afford" to provide the needed resources for a strong and vibrant space program. I just don't--and won't ever--concede to that as an inevitable reality. That's frankly the primary factor that keeps me doing what I am doing despite a LOT of reasons I could otherwise have for simply packing it in and having a far more stress-free and comfortable life-style, so please allow me my delusions, if that's what you want to insist they are, hehe.

We definitely agree a lot more than we disagree.

I especially agree with this: 'I DO accept that I am in DENIAL of assertions that this nation simply cannot "afford" to provide the needed resources for a strong and vibrant space program.'

I think, like you, that by making the case and gathering more support that NASA's budget can possibly be increased. However. How successful has been the approach of "projecting a budget increase will help ensure the budget will be increased"? That has been an EPIC failure. SLS hasn't helped the budget, either. The same folks who slightly increased SLS from the President's request also cut NASA's budget by nearly $2 billion ... it's still just in the House, but still... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEJL2Uuv-oQ
(For you foreigners who don't understand how this works in the states, it's a pretty good explanation! :) )

I am starting a campaign to support NASA and their budget. I don't think it'll result in much of an increase. But here's the issue:

What's the best approach, the MOST LIKELY (according to budget) approach to get us to doing real exploration? Do we have to have an SLS-like vehicle? What if we never get much more money that we get right now? Is there any possible way to do real exploration? Perhaps we need an approach like ISS or MIR. MIR, for instance, didn't require any new launch vehicles to be built. ISS used Shuttle, but it wasn't the only way it could've been done. A lander doesn't technically need to be launched using an HLV (it had been done on an EELV-class vehicle during Apollo). There are approaches which use existing vehicles to do exploration, allowing a larger amount of funding to be used for the spacecraft hardware itself and we can actually start building that hardware right away without waiting for another launch vehicle since we know what current so-called medium-lift launch vehicles are capable of. If we started making these payloads soon (using similar systems to what are used on ISS), then we could help the workforce by transitioning them to build payloads.

If NASA DOES get a large increase in funding, we can either use that for additional spacecraft hardware, more propellant, or an HLV. Skylab was originally intended to be launched using an EELV-class launch vehicle and was later modified to be launched on an HLV, so that's certainly possible. We lose basically nothing by choosing to develop spacecraft hardware first with the expectation of a flat budget but still ending up getting an increased budget.

In the meantime, there is a glut of EELV-class launch vehicles that are going to be there either way. With a larger launch demand, the fixed costs for those medium-lift launch vehicles will be spread much wider and thus the EELVs could be more competitive with foreign launchers. And if the demand IS driven up very high because of an increased NASA budget, it would provide a high enough flight rate (especially for propellant) to justify one or two of the RLV projects currently on the back-burner (like the Air Force's reusable flyback booster project that Lockheed is working on to eventually supplant EELV first-stage). So, by foregoing the fancy SLS-like vehicle, we get the near guarantee of doing some human exploration in the mid-term (even with a flat budget), we get much more competitive domestic launch vehicles (which would benefit NASA's unmanned exploration missions by lower launch costs) which help lower the US's trade deficit, AND we get the possibility of getting a viable RLV or two.

What do you think, 51D Mascot? I definitely think we are both passionate about NASA and human spaceflight in general, and I think we agree on more things than we disagree on.

Meanwhile, I'm going to support NASA's budget either way.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/13/2011 04:32 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

I ask, as I can't really blame people for being wary of things because of what happened with CxP.

I can't speak for anyone other than myself, but for me my opposition to SLS is two-pronged.

One element is, as you suggest, because of the mess CxP became.  It doesn't help that a lot of the ardent SLS proponents (thought notably not all) were also full-throated CxP "there's nothing wrong here other than a stingy Congress/White House" denialists. People who really think that we would've been heading back to the Moon in short order if it wasn't for that HSF-hating, President of ours. Couple that with NASA's new-vehicle development track record over the rest of my lifetime, and I have to say that my confidence in their ability to execute on a new vehicle is pretty darned low. But yeah, I probably wouldn't have been as adamantly opposed to ESAS had it been a more DIRECT-like solution. I still don't think it was the right call, but it wasn't as much of an intelligence insulter as Ares-I was.

That said, my other reason has to do with Goals, Strategies, and Objectives.  For the goals that are important to me, and the strategies likely to put them in place, SLS just really doesn't move things forward in a useful way.  OV likes to harp on "what's the mission, what's the architecture" etc, but those are lower level concerns.  As Jeff Greason put it, what's the Goal (and do we actually agree on it), and what are the strategies that will lead to that goal.  Once we have the goal and strategy, then we can talk about objectives (missions) and tactics (architectures).  The danger is that if you focus on a strategy-less objective, you can win the battle but lose the war (reference a certain Greek leader named Pyhrrus). Tactics should be driven not just on what is the best way to achieve the specific mission and deadline, but on what best aligns with the overall goals you are trying to achieve. And for me, if the goal is some variation on enabling humanity to become a multiplanetary species, enabling the resources of space to be tapped for humanity's benefits, etc SLS just doesn't seem the right tool. Sure, it might be the "easiest" way theoretically to achieve some specific mission and deadline (get back to the Moon by 2025), but it delays developing the stuff we really need, etc.

~Jon

Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/13/2011 04:37 PM

1.  "There is no leadership at Nasa".  Once the Obama adm. is gone Gene Cernan will be appointed to lead Nasa.  He'll put clothes on the administration.

Wow, Capt. Cernan. I interviewed him once - the man is an inspiration! I've never "felt" someone down a phone line like that. I can't even describe it. The man is legend, an absolute legend.

I'd love to see Cernan get the reigns of NASA, just don't know that the next administration whoever and whenever they are there, would be that smart.

I think John Young would be a good guy too.  He's quiet, but seems to have a quiet, hard strength when I've seen interviews with him.
Throw Buzz and Neil in there to help out, and I think you'd get things done.  Imagine a House or Senate committee hearing where these inaccurate politicians are trying to stare down one of those living legands, and how foolish they'll look trying.
"Pardon me congressman, I didn't realize you were an expert in this field.  I've flown in space and walked on the moon...what are your credentials again?"


Just before Buzz punches his lights out.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 04:38 PM

Bolden never said Orion wouldn't be ready.  He said SLS wouldn't be ready.  Orion + Delta IV will be ready.  Hell, Orion + Falcon Heavy will be ready.  Just not SLS. 

Yes, think about that for a while...amazing how that comes as a coincidence.

You can't blame Bolden for that. He is predicting the outcome based on the President's FY2012 budget. Congress is free to disagree with the funding of the President's FY2012 NASA Budget request and fund the SLS at the NASA Authorization bill level.   

I'm not blaming Gen. Bolden at all. I think he is the puppet in all this.

What I'm saying, is that the higher-ups are trying to play this situation, and 'possibly' (just a possibility) to give a company like SpaceX time to get their rocket far enough along to become a contender. Then when the congress sees a huge disparity between NASA & commercial, they could say: "whoa, here's an alternative".
Hey Robert!
I’ve been saying that all along and using the excuse (a good one) like “we have got to get the rocket right this time” just plays right into the situation and buys more time….
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/13/2011 04:41 PM
SLS hasn't helped the budget, either.

How do you know that?

This reminds me of that thing during WWI, when helmets were introduced and the rate of head injuries shot up.  There was a lot of political rhetoric about how helmets were worse than useless, but it eventually turned out that the head injury stat didn't include fatal head injuries...

NASA seems to be a traditional target for budget slashers.  Considering the current state of the nation's finances, I suspect that without SLS and MPCV, NASA's budget would be a lot smaller right now.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: EE Scott on 07/13/2011 04:43 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

I ask, as I can't really blame people for being wary of things because of what happened with CxP.

I can't speak for anyone other than myself, but for me my opposition to SLS is two-pronged.

One element is, as you suggest, because of the mess CxP became.  It doesn't help that a lot of the ardent SLS proponents (thought notably not all) were also full-throated CxP "there's nothing wrong here other than a stingy Congress/White House" denialists. People who really think that we would've been heading back to the Moon in short order if it wasn't for that HSF-hating, President of ours. Couple that with NASA's new-vehicle development track record over the rest of my lifetime, and I have to say that my confidence in their ability to execute on a new vehicle is pretty darned low. But yeah, I probably wouldn't have been as adamantly opposed to ESAS had it been a more DIRECT-like solution. I still don't think it was the right call, but it wasn't as much of an intelligence insulter as Ares-I was.

That said, my other reason has to do with Goals, Strategies, and Objectives.  For the goals that are important to me, and the strategies likely to put them in place, SLS just really doesn't move things forward in a useful way.  OV likes to harp on "what's the mission, what's the architecture" etc, but those are lower level concerns.  As Jeff Greason put it, what's the Goal (and do we actually agree on it), and what are the strategies that will lead to that goal.  Once we have the goal and strategy, then we can talk about objectives (missions) and tactics (architectures).  The danger is that if you focus on a strategy-less objective, you can win the battle but lose the war (reference a certain Greek leader named Pyhrrus). Tactics should be driven not just on what is the best way to achieve the specific mission and deadline, but on what best aligns with the overall goals you are trying to achieve. And for me, if the goal is some variation on enabling humanity to become a multiplanetary species, enabling the resources of space to be tapped for humanity's benefits, etc SLS just doesn't seem the right tool. Sure, it might be the "easiest" way theoretically to achieve some specific mission and deadline (get back to the Moon by 2025), but it delays developing the stuff we really need, etc.

~Jon

Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.

I would just add that EELV's can take exploration hardware (MPCV, habs, prop modules, landers, etc.) on great BEO missions to NEO, Moon, etc, on the way to an eventual Mars mission.  Let's build and shake down that hardware now, then build an HLV later. 

A Mars mission however would need an HLV, but any Mars mission would need serious NASA budget increases sustained over many years, way beyond what we can expect to see anytime this decade.  The HLV can wait until we have secured the commitment from Congress to truly provide the resources for a mission that actually needs it.  It's easier to build an HLV than the much more complicated payloads that are necessary for BEO.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 04:46 PM
The law says "to the extent practicable", which means if you can't do it in the budget provided, you don't have to try. 

That is not what the term means.

"To the extent practical" would mean that you may select from among several options and pick the one most practical.

"To the extent ptacticable" means that if there is any way at all that this can be done, then that is what you will do - without regard to whether or not any other potential options would be better. The term was very deliberately chosen.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 04:46 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

I ask, as I can't really blame people for being wary of things because of what happened with CxP.

I can't speak for anyone other than myself, but for me my opposition to SLS is two-pronged.

One element is, as you suggest, because of the mess CxP became.  It doesn't help that a lot of the ardent SLS proponents (thought notably not all) were also full-throated CxP "there's nothing wrong here other than a stingy Congress/White House" denialists. People who really think that we would've been heading back to the Moon in short order if it wasn't for that HSF-hating, President of ours. Couple that with NASA's new-vehicle development track record over the rest of my lifetime, and I have to say that my confidence in their ability to execute on a new vehicle is pretty darned low. But yeah, I probably wouldn't have been as adamantly opposed to ESAS had it been a more DIRECT-like solution. I still don't think it was the right call, but it wasn't as much of an intelligence insulter as Ares-I was.

That said, my other reason has to do with Goals, Strategies, and Objectives.  For the goals that are important to me, and the strategies likely to put them in place, SLS just really doesn't move things forward in a useful way.  OV likes to harp on "what's the mission, what's the architecture" etc, but those are lower level concerns.  As Jeff Greason put it, what's the Goal (and do we actually agree on it), and what are the strategies that will lead to that goal.  Once we have the goal and strategy, then we can talk about objectives (missions) and tactics (architectures).  The danger is that if you focus on a strategy-less objective, you can win the battle but lose the war (reference a certain Greek leader named Pyhrrus). Tactics should be driven not just on what is the best way to achieve the specific mission and deadline, but on what best aligns with the overall goals you are trying to achieve. And for me, if the goal is some variation on enabling humanity to become a multiplanetary species, enabling the resources of space to be tapped for humanity's benefits, etc SLS just doesn't seem the right tool. Sure, it might be the "easiest" way theoretically to achieve some specific mission and deadline (get back to the Moon by 2025), but it delays developing the stuff we really need, etc.

~Jon

Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 04:47 PM
...
Throw Buzz and Neil in there to help out, and I think you'd get things done.  Imagine a House or Senate committee hearing where these inaccurate politicians are trying to stare down one of those living legands, and how foolish they'll look trying.
"Pardon me congressman, I didn't realize you were an expert in this field.  I've flown in space and walked on the moon...what are your credentials again?"
Just before Buzz punches his lights out.
You win at life. :D
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/13/2011 04:53 PM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.

I don't remember which document said this but I believe that something like 600 EELV flights would be required to get to Mars...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 04:54 PM
I think Jon's post is telling as it shows there's absolutely no flexibility in the anti-SLS argument. He's entitled to that, but it does not allow for a commonground to be found from "their side".

Woah. Note I said that I'm only speaking for myself. And also, while I think that SLS doesn't make sense, that doesn't mean that I'm capable of living with a *reasonable* compromise. And gutting commercial crew and space technology in favor of SLS, while providing it with unrealistic timelines, and not enough budget to have a shot in heck of meeting those timelines is not a reasonable compromise. That's the problem, SLS takes so much money, that unless the budget increases a lot, there isn't a huge amount of room for compromise. You cut SLS's budget too far, while insisting it uses as much of the Shuttle heritage as possible, and you're going to end up where we were with CxP--where the fixed costs dominate the available money, and actual progress slows to a stop.

I'm perfectly interested in hearing reasonable compromises, even if I think SLS is a bad idea. 

Quote
I also note the faith statements from the commercial lobby, absolutely no questioning of what has been press released on a vehicle which has not left the powerpoint, the FH, which is not just strapping three F9s together based on the numbers they are claiming, used against SLS, when it's not even SLS class.

Um...I don't think I said a word about F9 of FH *anywhere* in my post.  I simply stated that SLS was orthogonal to the goal of actual space development.  It would help when you accuse someone of making faith statements if they actually made those statements.

Quote
Again, they are entitled to that opinion. I just hope people, and I expect they are on a site of this quality, come to their own conclusions.

Of course. Chris asked why some of us who oppose SLS were doing so, and I provided *my opinion*. You're perfectly free to draw whatever conclusion you would like.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jason1701 on 07/13/2011 05:01 PM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.

I don't remember which document said this but I believe that the number was something like 600 flights...

There sure are some incredibly bloated Mars architectures out there. And others that aren't; Zubrin's 3 FH launches, for instance. That specific proposal certainly was optimistic in a number of aspects, but just multiply the number of launches by 2-3 to correct for that.

Bobby Braun stated it would take twelve times the mass of the ISS to conduct a Mars mission, or twice ISS's mass after developing every technology he wants to. That's still ridiculous.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 05:01 PM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.

Wha?  Several hundreds?  No. Not even close.  If it really was that bad, you'd be talking about dozens of SDHLV flights, taking several years to put up...

But really, doing a sprint from LEO to Mars with no infrastructure just isn't going to happen (IMO). Unless NASA's budget doubles, at the rate we're going I'd be surprised if NASA boots land on Mars before I'm retired (and I'm barely 30 right now). Why should we carry the cost of an SDHLV for that long if we don't need it for several decades?  No, SDHLV really needs to base its arguments on nearer-term needs like Lunar or NEO missions, and for those, the argument is significantly weaker.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 05:03 PM
When it comes to affordability, remember NASA’s comes out of the general discretionary budget and out of that expense appears to be a lot. That’s why it rates a cut. The others, to the Hill, are sacred cows.

http://motorgasm.com/2011/04/10/breakdown-of-2011-u-s-federal-budget-78-5-billion-cut-from-military-fine-arts-and-unused-funding-for-federal-highway-election-reform-and-other-programs/
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 05:03 PM
SLS hasn't helped the budget, either.

How do you know that?

This reminds me of that thing during WWI, when helmets were introduced and the rate of head injuries shot up.  There was a lot of political rhetoric about how helmets were worse than useless, but it eventually turned out that the head injury stat didn't include fatal head injuries...

NASA seems to be a traditional target for budget slashers.  Considering the current state of the nation's finances, I suspect that without SLS and MPCV, NASA's budget would be a lot smaller right now.

Um, I think Robotbeat's point is that we have an SLS. It's getting far more money than all the technology and commercial crew/cargo funding combined (like 3x more by my rough count).  And in spite of that, the NASA topline budget took a 9% hit, and all the non-SLS projects took even bigger haircuts.  SLS funding seems to only protect SLS funding, not the rest of NASA. Note which program was the only one that didn't take a big haircut over the president's FY12 budget request.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/13/2011 05:03 PM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.

I don't remember which document said this but I believe that the number was something like 600 flights...
Well, the last main Mars architecture required 9 Ares V launches of 120 tons each.  Using Delta IV heavies, you would need 43 launches to just match the mass needs, not accounting for any mass penalties from sub-optimal component arrangement.  At peak production and launch rate, it would take 4 years to assemble, effectively shutting off all DoD access to space in the process.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/13/2011 05:06 PM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.

I don't remember which document said this but I believe that the number was something like 600 flights...

There sure are some incredibly bloated Mars architectures out there. And others that aren't; Zubrin's 3 FH launches, for instance. That specific proposal certainly was optimistic in a number of aspects, but just multiply the number of launches by 2-3 to correct for that.

Bobby Braun stated it would take twelve times the mass of the ISS to conduct a Mars mission, or twice ISS's mass after developing every technology he wants to. That's still ridiculous.
Need more than just a 300% increase to compensate.  We discussed this a bit, and we were looking at roughly 30 launches to build a mission of any value.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 05:07 PM
The law says "to the extent practicable", which means if you can't do it in the budget provided, you don't have to try. 

That is not what the term means.

"To the extent practical" would mean that you may select from among several options and pick the one most practical.

"To the extent ptacticable" means that if there is any way at all that this can be done, then that is what you will do - without regard to whether or not any other potential options would be better. The term was very deliberately chosen.

Chuck, I think we all know that "practicable" was intentionally chosen to put the thumb on the scales in favor of an SD-HLV.  However, "if there is any way at all that it can be done" probably includes budgetary and schedule factors. Right now, with the budget SLS is getting (in spite of eating the lunch of every other worthy program at NASA), there's no way they can claim their original plan is *practicable* within that budget and timeframe.  If they want to relax the timeframe, or provide more budget, that's Congress's prerogative.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 05:10 PM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.

I don't remember which document said this but I believe that something like 600 EELV flights would be required to get to Mars...

Sorry yg, your posts are usually really informative, but that 600 flights number just sounds completely bogus.  Even if you pick the smallest EELV, that's 6000mT in LEO.  That would take almost 50x 130mT SDHLV launches, or at least 4 years worth of SDHLV launches even using the most optimistic DIRECT numbers, and a budget to match them. If that was what it took to make it to Mars, we should just flat out give up hope right now.

Fortunately, it's not. If you take an approach like what Jeff Greason was proposing (the planet-hopping strategy of setting up ISRU infrastructure on the Moon and Phobos/Deimos first), the amount you need to launch from LEO for any Mars mission from there drops precipitously.  Quite frankly, unless NASA gets a 2x budget increase, I think an indirect, planet-hopping depot-centric architecture is likely going to get people on Mars sooner (and a lot more sustainably, and with a lot more on-the-ground capability) than the more direct SDHLV route.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/13/2011 05:11 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

I ask, as I can't really blame people for being wary of things because of what happened with CxP.

I can't speak for anyone other than myself, but for me my opposition to SLS is two-pronged.

One element is, as you suggest, because of the mess CxP became.  It doesn't help that a lot of the ardent SLS proponents (thought notably not all) were also full-throated CxP "there's nothing wrong here other than a stingy Congress/White House" denialists. People who really think that we would've been heading back to the Moon in short order if it wasn't for that HSF-hating, President of ours. Couple that with NASA's new-vehicle development track record over the rest of my lifetime, and I have to say that my confidence in their ability to execute on a new vehicle is pretty darned low. But yeah, I probably wouldn't have been as adamantly opposed to ESAS had it been a more DIRECT-like solution. I still don't think it was the right call, but it wasn't as much of an intelligence insulter as Ares-I was.

That said, my other reason has to do with Goals, Strategies, and Objectives.  For the goals that are important to me, and the strategies likely to put them in place, SLS just really doesn't move things forward in a useful way.  OV likes to harp on "what's the mission, what's the architecture" etc, but those are lower level concerns.  As Jeff Greason put it, what's the Goal (and do we actually agree on it), and what are the strategies that will lead to that goal.  Once we have the goal and strategy, then we can talk about objectives (missions) and tactics (architectures).  The danger is that if you focus on a strategy-less objective, you can win the battle but lose the war (reference a certain Greek leader named Pyhrrus). Tactics should be driven not just on what is the best way to achieve the specific mission and deadline, but on what best aligns with the overall goals you are trying to achieve. And for me, if the goal is some variation on enabling humanity to become a multiplanetary species, enabling the resources of space to be tapped for humanity's benefits, etc SLS just doesn't seem the right tool. Sure, it might be the "easiest" way theoretically to achieve some specific mission and deadline (get back to the Moon by 2025), but it delays developing the stuff we really need, etc.

~Jon

This post I personally find somewhat annoying.  As I have come to expect from some, it is all about the individual as opposed to the whole and it is a good thing this is the space policy side of the forum, because the post above is all politics. 

I have personally noted as of late I have been envoked in several other posts, the reasons for that I will let the reader determine.  However, I will note the questions I pose are not "lower level concerns" and the reality is what Jeff Greason and I are saying are actually very much related.  It's just that some place Greason on a pedestal while wanting to disagree with me because what they choose to believe I personally represent and the obvious personal bias they have against others within the same industry. 

The irony is of course I just chose to represent it this way in order to simplify communication and make the point I was trying to make as clear to the reader as possible.  A few years ago when I was using words more in line with what Mr. Greason is currently using, I was told how wrong I was for asking such questions by the person who made the post above and how wonderful everything would be without any of this.   

So, Mr. Goff, I will leave it with this.  Phrase the questions however you wish.  The root point is these need to be addressed in order to once and for all determine if an SLS-class vehicle is needed or not to determine which offers the lowest potential per-mission cost.  The fact that you go on and on about your personal desires (and for goodness sake, I'm maybe like a 1/2 decade older than you so please quit with the whining about your age and NASA) and what you personally believe is best shows, to me anyway, that you are only focused on the "battle" and not the "war" by trying to minimize anyone who does not bask in your glory and who is trying to ask the very questions that will allow for what you are (now anyway...again irony) calling for. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: MP99 on 07/13/2011 05:12 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

Chris,

ISTM the 130mT SLS will be almost exactly like ESAS LV27.3, which started out as CxP's "CaLV":-
5x RS-25
5-seg HTPB SRBs
stretched core
J-2 based EDS (2x J-2S)

If SLS ends up with 5x SSME, this is pretty much the same vehicle (just with 1x J-2X instead of 2x J-2S).

I assume the core-only vehicle will be much the same, just without the upper stage (that's the simplest reading of PL 111-267), so at the top end of the 70-100 ton(ne) range.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Downix on 07/13/2011 05:16 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

Chris,

ISTM the 130mT SLS will be almost exactly like ESAS LV27.3 (the "CaLV"):-
5x RS-25
5-seg HTPB SRBs
stretched core
J-2 based EDS (2x J-2S)

If SLS ends up with 5x SSME, this is pretty much the same vehicle (just with 1x J-2X instead of 2x J-2S).

I assume the core-only vehicle will be much the same, just without the upper stage (that's the simplest reading of PL 111-267), so at the top end of the 70-100 ton(ne) range.

cheers, Martin
I did not see any major issue with LV27.3, it was it's pairing up with "the stick" which caused most of the issues I could see, when it comes to Constellation.

I would consider it a tad overkill, but not game-breakingly so.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/13/2011 05:19 PM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.

I don't remember which document said this but I believe that something like 600 EELV flights would be required to get to Mars...

Sorry yg, your posts are usually really informative, but that 600 flights number just sounds completely bogus.  Even if you pick the smallest EELV, that's 6000mT in LEO.  That would take almost 50x 130mT SDHLV launches, or at least 4 years worth of SDHLV launches even using the most optimistic DIRECT numbers, and a budget to match them. If that was what it took to make it to Mars, we should just flat out give up hope right now.

Fortunately, it's not. If you take an approach like what Jeff Greason was proposing (the planet-hopping strategy of setting up ISRU infrastructure on the Moon and Phobos/Deimos first), the amount you need to launch from LEO for any Mars mission from there drops precipitously.  Quite frankly, unless NASA gets a 2x budget increase, I think an indirect, planet-hopping depot-centric architecture is likely going to get people on Mars sooner (and a lot more sustainably, and with a lot more on-the-ground capability) than the more direct SDHLV route.

~Jon

I could be wrong. I am going from memory. It think that it was a document on L2 and I remember you commenting specifically saying that it's not because that it's the harder option that it shouldn't be the option that is chosen. I will try to find it. But I might be off on that number. I remember thinking that the number was very high.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: MP99 on 07/13/2011 05:22 PM
I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

Chris,

ISTM the 130mT SLS will be almost exactly like ESAS LV27.3 (the "CaLV"):-
5x RS-25
5-seg HTPB SRBs
stretched core
J-2 based EDS (2x J-2S)

If SLS ends up with 5x SSME, this is pretty much the same vehicle (just with 1x J-2X instead of 2x J-2S).

I assume the core-only vehicle will be much the same, just without the upper stage (that's the simplest reading of PL 111-267), so at the top end of the 70-100 ton(ne) range.

I did not see any major issue with LV27.3, it was it's pairing up with "the stick" which caused most of the issues I could see, when it comes to Constellation.

I would consider it a tad overkill, but not game-breakingly so.

Chris asked "Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?"

But ESAS pretty much was, so the question seems moot.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 05:27 PM
Danderman (and others)

Because it was brought up earlier, and just to provide some context to this discussion on SLS vs. DIRECT in the context of this thread going forward, it's important for me to categorically state that while DIRECT provided an HLV to replace the Ares-V, DIRECT was never about being an HLV architecture.

It's important to recognize that DIRECT was always about trying to provide the nation a launch system that (1) complied with the law (2) was Commercial friendly and (3) that gave the nation the best bang for the buck we could given the absolute constraint of (1). The law said that the LV had to be Shuttle derived and had to use the ATK SRB's. That took away the EELV and clean sheet options from us. We were stuck with STS. So we set about the work.

Note that one of the guiding principles to me has always been that the nation needed to have a heavy lift capability, not a heavy lift rocket. There is a huge difference between those two. It is what drove my "one rocket – two flight configurations" design principle. If you look back at my posts you will see that I used that term "flight configuration" from the first days of DIRECT v1.0. That point of view always guided me in every decision I made as we were designing DIRECT. The Ares-V was a Heavy Lift Rocket; that was its purpose and couldn't do anything else. DIRECT on the other hand, provided a Heavy Lift *capability* on a Medium Lift launcher instead. I don't have the baseball cards in front of me here but the medium lift flight configuration placed ~65-70 tons into LEO. That is actually more than I wanted to lift to LEO but that's just the way the numbers worked out. On the other hand when a Heavy Lift need was identified, such as the ESAS Lunar missions, all one had to do was add the upper stage and one more core stage engine. Suddenly you had a heavy lift rocket available.

From Day 1 we wanted to share everything we could with the existing Commercial EELV's. DIRECT v1.0 used the RS-68 from the Delta but upgraded it to have a regen nozzle, fixed the LH2 inlet temperature problem, provided the necessary changes to man-rate the engine and retuned the engine for vacuum operation instead of sea level as it is used today. We had indications from the USAF that they would be receptive to these changes under the right circumstances. The intent was to provide synergy with the Delta-IV which would have (1) saved the nation a ton of money and (2) provided an EELV crew launch capability in the Delta-IV Heavy. Way back in the beginning we made the point countless times that the intention was to provide NASA the STS-based HLV mandated by law *and* to provide a path to Commercial cargo and crew for ISS support and to other LEO destinations on the D4/D4 Heavy. Increasing the rate of use/disposal of the RS-68 across the ESAS and Commercial market was seen as key to controlling the cost of the ESAS launches as well as lowering the costs of the EELV missions.

DIRECT v2.0 maintained that philosophy but kept the RS-68 changes to just human-rating.

DIRECT v3.0 was the direct result of learning that the ablative nozzle of the RS-68 would not survive the thermal environment of the SRB's and that providing the regen nozzle was no longer a viable option due to budget and schedule. That's when we switched, reluctantly at first, back to the SSME for the core engine. But even that decision benefited the Commercial concerns because in the SSME we had an engine so efficient that we no longer needed the J-2X. We could completely eliminate it, along with all its costs, and go with a 6xRL-10 powered upper stage. Thus were we able to *still* spin off ESAS efforts to benefit Commercial.

All this just to draw the line between us and the SLS.

If the SLS is in effect a Jupiter-130/246 then I support it because it is a Medium Lift launcher with Heavy Lift *capability*, doable in a reasonable timeframe, directly supports Commercial while obeying the STS law and can be built and operated for a reasonable amount of funding, leaving more than enough to actually conduct missions. It could actually be useful for missions outside of NASA's Flexible Path Exploration Philosophy, providing the lift for science and planetary probes that cannot now be flown because of mass or volume constraints. It can also lift heavy LEO payloads such as the Bigalow 2100 station and other heavy or voluminous commercial payloads that would likely be spawned by the increasing presence of Commercial in LEO.

On the other hand, if the SLS is any bigger than this *or* is actually a Heavy Lift Rocket design, then I do not support it. There is such a thing as too big and anything even approaching an Ares-V is an unacceptable monster. And if it's too big then it's also too expensive. A pure Heavy Lift rocket is a one-trick pony and cannot be used for anything except infrequent heavy lift exploration missions and as a showpiece for tourists who buy tickets to see it. A Government-Owned HLV is a complete waste of taxpayer money.

DIRECT was never a Heavy Lift launcher. It was always, and remains, a Medium Lift launcher with Heavy Lift capability when needed. It was a true bridge between STS/ISS and ESAS/Exploration. Its very existence was designed to enhance Commercial. As long as NASA's new launcher had to be Shuttle Derived, this was the best way to go given the law constraints; by using what we already had and providing as much synergy with existing Commercial as we could. That was - is - and remains - DIRECT. And bringing this long post back to the topic, what the SLS is, unfortunately, remains to be seen.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: libs0n on 07/13/2011 05:33 PM

Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.

Only if you think high flight rates are a bad thing.  High flight rates allow you to achieve economies of scale like mass production/operation or reusability.  High flight rates spark an impetus to serve that market which leverages the power of competition to improve the state of space access.  There's a common belief that we are lacking a deus ex machina like the skylon to spark change.  Build that deus ex machina and it will come.  I posit the opposite is true; provide a large market and they will come to serve it, and evolution over time may very well result in your deus ex machina. 

Nor are such high flight rates beyond the realm of feasibility.  The R-7 has flown 1,774 times, and during the early eighties it launched at a rate of 60 a year.  The flight rate goals of the shuttle were met, but they were met by the Soviets. 

And I like to point out that the cost of the SLS could afford such large scale purchases.  The development cost of the SLS at 12 billion could buy 222 Falcon 9 Flights, and at its yearly operational cost of 2billion, 37 a year every year.  That's probably enough for a hypergolic mission to Mars, even before taking into account the development of the Heavy.  How many Mars missions worth of launch will NASA spend in just getting and keeping the SLS operational?

To go to Mars, NASA must thread a needle.  Perhaps that needle lies through the opportunities and advantages above, and not through the deus ex machina that Mars advocates think is the missing link.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/13/2011 05:38 PM

Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.

Only if you think high flight rates are a bad thing.  High flight rates allow you to achieve economies of scale like mass production/operation or reusability. 

High flight rates are a good thing, but they are also only part of the equation when evaluating the specific total per mission cost.  This has been, is and will be my point.  People need to stop focusing only on the rocket(s) and look at the bigger picture. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: PoliSpace on 07/13/2011 05:40 PM

How many humans has SLS Launched? 
Hell, how many times has SLS period? 


[/quote]

Shuttle technology? Which IS what SLS will be made from. 135 missions of crews from 2 to 7.

You're not really defending your point, and your second question made no sense, but if you mean how many times launched? 135
[/quote]

Surely you don't want to include Challenger (51-L) in that successful launch category, do you?   
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/13/2011 05:44 PM
Surely you don't want to include Challenger (51-L) in that successful launch category, do you?   

Really?  Seriously?  Are you that hardline that you are seemingly just trolling for trouble?  Surely, someone as informed as you realizes the background to the Challenger launch decision and that it was much more than a technical failure.  The design was changed and improved as a consequence to that even in light of the true cause. 

Surely, if you want to look at design improvements from lessons learned you need to increase your scope from just this particular design.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 05:46 PM
This post I personally find somewhat annoying.  As I have come to expect from some, it is all about the individual as opposed to the whole and it is a good thing this is the space policy side of the forum, because the post above is all politics.

All politics? I made a grand total of *one* political comment in that entire post.  The rest of it was talking about goals, strategy, etc. 

Quote
So, Mr. Goff, I will leave it with this.  Phrase the questions however you wish.  The root point is these need to be addressed in order to once and for all determine if an SLS-class vehicle is needed or not to determine which offers the lowest potential per-mission cost.  The fact that you go on and on about your personal desires (and for goodness sake, I'm maybe like a 1/2 decade older than you so please quit with the whining about your age and NASA) and what you personally believe is best shows, to me anyway, that you are only focused on the "battle" and not the "war" by trying to minimize anyone who does not bask in your glory and who is trying to ask the very questions that will allow for what you are (now anyway...again irony) are calling for. 

I mentioned my personal opinions, because while I think that there is the beginnings of a consensus that "space settlement" or something like it should be the goal of NASA, I didn't want to be presumptuous and treat that like it was clearly stated 100% agreed-upon public policy.  And because you tend to nitpick me if I don't clearly state when I'm offering my opinion.

I do agree however that clarifying goals and strategies, and *then* objectives would help us determine if SLS was a useful method to achieving those.  The goals, while they've been hinted at, aren't as firmly agreed-to as Jeff Greason was claiming, and there's a complete and utter lack of any coherent strategy (which I think you'd agree with). Without those firmed up, picking mieaningful objectives and tactics is premature.  And I do agree that it's hard to do a hard quantifiable analysis of what is the best approach without knowing those details.

I think where our disagreement stems from though is that I don't think you have to have all the details 100% agreed-upon to make at least qualitative observations. If something like space settlement or making space part of humanity's economic sphere really is our goal, that has implications, even if we haven't formally picked a strategy. For instance, you don't have to have a formal strategy to know that space settlement pretty much implies human-spaceflight, not just robotic. Also, space settlement also implies the development of some level of space commerce BEO--you can't have sustained settlement if those people aren't providing some level of economic benefit to the rest of humanity. And that implies that whatever strategy you pick implies doing things in a way that enables and promotes the commercial use of space. And While I can't prove conclusively that this means that SLS is worthless to this goal (so yes, I probably overstated my case), it does hint pretty strongly that you need some sort of commercially affordable transportation system, which if you do the analyses leads you pretty quickly to the conclusion that depots, aerobraking, reusable in-space vehicles, etc are what needs to happen. With SLS but none of those, I don't see much hope for BEO commerce. With all of those but without SLS (because all of those are possible without SLS), you can approach an affordable space transportation architecture that gives BEO commerce a chance.  It's not something that I could make a bulletproof case, but I think that it's fair to say that if something like space settlement is the goal, one can make the argument from that point that at best SLS is only part of a much bigger solution, regardless of what specific strategy is chosen...

I hope I'm not wasting my, your, and everyone else's time with responding.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/13/2011 05:48 PM
How many humans has SLS Launched? 
Hell, how many times has SLS period?

Shuttle technology? Which IS what SLS will be made from. 135 missions of crews from 2 to 7.

You're not really defending your point, and your second question made no sense, but if you mean how many times launched? 135

Surely you don't want to include Challenger (51-L) in that successful launch category, do you?   

Where was the word "successful" in your question?

LJ is correct in stating that there were 135 launches of the STS system.   Two of those failed, but that wasn't your question.

Ross.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/13/2011 05:52 PM
SLS hasn't helped the budget, either.

How do you know that?

This reminds me of that thing during WWI, when helmets were introduced and the rate of head injuries shot up.  There was a lot of political rhetoric about how helmets were worse than useless, but it eventually turned out that the head injury stat didn't include fatal head injuries...

NASA seems to be a traditional target for budget slashers.  Considering the current state of the nation's finances, I suspect that without SLS and MPCV, NASA's budget would be a lot smaller right now.

Um, I think Robotbeat's point is that we have an SLS. It's getting far more money than all the technology and commercial crew/cargo funding combined (like 3x more by my rough count).  And in spite of that, the NASA topline budget took a 9% hit, and all the non-SLS projects took even bigger haircuts.  SLS funding seems to only protect SLS funding, not the rest of NASA. Note which program was the only one that didn't take a big haircut over the president's FY12 budget request.

My point is that it's hard to tell from the data.  Of course SLS gets the bulk of the protection, but it isn't obvious that there's no correlation with other sections of the budget.  Also, this is a proposed bill, and there are a lot of potential reasons why it looks the way it does and a lot of steps in between this and law.

Even SLS funding in the proposed bill is a lot lower than it should be based on the Authorization Act...

...

We get a lot of people on here that rave about how much NASA could do with a flat budget if SLS weren't hogging any, as if the money SLS was using would be available if it were gone.  This strikes me as being a lot like doing calculus while holding the wrong variable constant.  Newton made that mistake when he tried to calculate the speed of sound - he held temperature constant across the pressure wave.  Sounds reasonable, right?  Wrong.  He was off by a factor of 1.4.  Not his fault; he didn't know what entropy was...

I think it unreasonable to maintain that cancelling SLS will free up budget for other things.  I think that at best, NASA's budget will decrease by the amount SLS would have been using, which doesn't do anybody else at NASA any good.  At worst, the lack of political support will open everyone else up to the budget slashers for real and we end up with a pitiful shell of an Agency.

Quote
Quite frankly, unless NASA gets a 2x budget increase, I think an indirect, planet-hopping depot-centric architecture is likely going to get people on Mars sooner (and a lot more sustainably, and with a lot more on-the-ground capability) than the more direct SDHLV route.

What makes you think an SD-HLV wouldn't be used/useful for a planet-hopping depot-centric architecture?  DIRECT Phase III used the upper stage as the basis for a large cryogenic propellant depot, enabling very large single-launch lunar missions using propellant provided by anyone with a rocket who wanted to participate.  Mars would probably lean even more heavily on the depots.  And now that we know there's lunar water in large quantities, the case could easily develop for filling an L-point depot from the moon rather than the Earth...

In fact, with such a large, capable EDS doing double duty as an upper stage, I think it's going to start to seem like a waste of capability not to top it up in LEO before leaving...  and if it's got long-duration capability, an L-point depot could give it truly breathtaking interplanetary performance...  with tanking both in LEO and at L2, a J-241H could put its entire LEO payload on a Hohmann transfer to Jupiter...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Peter NASA on 07/13/2011 05:56 PM
Surely you don't want to include Challenger (51-L) in that successful launch category, do you?   

Really?  Seriously?  Are you that hardline that you are seemingly just trolling for trouble?  Surely, someone as informed as you realizes the background to the Challenger launch decision and that it was much more than a technical failure.  The design was changed and improved as a consequence to that even in light of the true cause. 

Surely, if you want to look at design improvements from lessons learned you need to increase your scope from just this particular design.

Very well said.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Arthur on 07/13/2011 05:58 PM
A simple thought on the funding debate:

In 2010, the US spent $707 billion on Defense, more than China, UK, France, Russia and the next 10 largest military budgets ALL COMBINED. We spend $5.2 billion per year arming other countries' military.

In the name of sanity, I know where cost cutting needs to start, and HSF isn't it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/13/2011 06:03 PM
I think where our disagreement stems from though is that I don't think you have to have all the details 100% agreed-upon to make at least qualitative observations. If something like space settlement or making space part of humanity's economic sphere really is our goal, that has implications, even if we haven't formally picked a strategy. For instance, you don't have to have a formal strategy to know that space settlement pretty much implies human-spaceflight, not just robotic. Also, space settlement also implies the development of some level of space commerce BEO--you can't have sustained settlement if those people aren't providing some level of economic benefit to the rest of humanity. And that implies that whatever strategy you pick implies doing things in a way that enables and promotes the commercial use of space. And While I can't prove conclusively that this means that SLS is worthless to this goal (so yes, I probably overstated my case), it does hint pretty strongly that you need some sort of commercially affordable transportation system, which if you do the analyses leads you pretty quickly to the conclusion that depots, aerobraking, reusable in-space vehicles, etc are what needs to happen. With SLS but none of those, I don't see much hope for BEO commerce. With all of those but without SLS (because all of those are possible without SLS), you can approach an affordable space transportation architecture that gives BEO commerce a chance.  It's not something that I could make a bulletproof case, but I think that it's fair to say that if something like space settlement is the goal, one can make the argument from that point that at best SLS is only part of a much bigger solution, regardless of what specific strategy is chosen...


Now you are talking reasonably.  For far to long it seems you have deliberately chosen to draw a line between "your side" and anyone with a perhaps different perspective. 

Nobody credible who has spoken about the possible need and use of SLS has suggested SLS be the end-all of everything.  In fact, it seems to have been quite the opposite but, it would appear, some cannot see beyond the rocket (as usual and leap to grand conclusions). 

If you want space commerce beyond LEO, you need NASA.  If NASA is to do anything meaningful, it needs to know *why* and *how* (which have been my point for years now) it is to do it.  If it is to do it, and therefore any chance for commercial participation which could spin-off into other non-NASA centric applications in space, then it needs to know how it can get the greatest good for the lowest cost.  Depending on all the other factors, it very well could include SLS in that mix that offers the lowest total integrated mission costs. 

This is what is unknown.  This is what NASA is getting away with and for far to long people have been at each others throats about a rocket (and more specifically a particular design and flying off the handle based on what they think it represents) than asking the right questions. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Lurker Steve on 07/13/2011 06:09 PM
A simple thought on the funding debate:

In 2010, the US spent $707 billion on Defense, more than China, UK, France, Russia and the next 10 largest military budgets ALL COMBINED. We spend $5.2 billion per year arming other countries' military.

In the name of sanity, I know where cost cutting needs to start, and HSF isn't it.


I don't think there is anyone, outside of John McCain, who wants to continue spending 2.5 Billion per week in Afghanistan. But unfortunately, like the CxP and JWST programs, we still keeping trying to find a way to salvage failed programs of the past.

Note that having Medicare / Medicaid / Social Security take up increasing larger percentages of the federal budget doesn't help either. Once we finish fighting someone else's war, and take care of the sick/elderly, there just isn't much money left after we pay the interest on our increasing debt load.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 06:22 PM
To Chuck or Ross:
In the DIRECT decision making process was there any consideration as who was going to process it like USA did for Shuttle. If they could operate Shuttle for 1.5B a years as it was claimed, what would it cost for them to process/operate a Jupiter variant?
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: OpsAnalyst on 07/13/2011 06:25 PM
I think where our disagreement stems from though is that I don't think you have to have all the details 100% agreed-upon to make at least qualitative observations. If something like space settlement or making space part of humanity's economic sphere really is our goal, that has implications, even if we haven't formally picked a strategy. For instance, you don't have to have a formal strategy to know that space settlement pretty much implies human-spaceflight, not just robotic. Also, space settlement also implies the development of some level of space commerce BEO--you can't have sustained settlement if those people aren't providing some level of economic benefit to the rest of humanity. And that implies that whatever strategy you pick implies doing things in a way that enables and promotes the commercial use of space. And While I can't prove conclusively that this means that SLS is worthless to this goal (so yes, I probably overstated my case), it does hint pretty strongly that you need some sort of commercially affordable transportation system, which if you do the analyses leads you pretty quickly to the conclusion that depots, aerobraking, reusable in-space vehicles, etc are what needs to happen. With SLS but none of those, I don't see much hope for BEO commerce. With all of those but without SLS (because all of those are possible without SLS), you can approach an affordable space transportation architecture that gives BEO commerce a chance.  It's not something that I could make a bulletproof case, but I think that it's fair to say that if something like space settlement is the goal, one can make the argument from that point that at best SLS is only part of a much bigger solution, regardless of what specific strategy is chosen...


Now you are talking reasonably.  For far to long it seems you have deliberately chosen to draw a line between "your side" and anyone with a perhaps different perspective. 

Nobody credible who has spoken about the possible need and use of SLS has suggested SLS be the end-all of everything.  In fact, it seems to have been quite the opposite but, it would appear, some cannot see beyond the rocket (as usual and leap to grand conclusions). 

If you want space commerce beyond LEO, you need NASA.  If NASA is to do anything meaningful, it needs to know *why* and *how* (which have been my point for years now) it is to do it.  If it is to do it, and therefore any chance for commercial participation which could spin-off into other non-NASA centric applications in space, then it needs to know how it can get the greatest good for the lowest cost.  Depending on all the other factors, it very well could include SLS in that mix that offers the lowest total integrated mission costs. 

This is what is unknown.  This is what NASA is getting away with and for far to long people have been at each others throats about a rocket (and more specifically a particular design and flying off the handle based on what they think it represents) than asking the right questions. 

Now, now.  Sounds like big picture, systems thinking.

Can't have that. ;)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/13/2011 06:40 PM
To Chuck or Ross:
In the DIRECT decision making process was there any consideration as who was going to process it like USA did for Shuttle. If they could operate Shuttle for 1.5B a years as it was claimed, what would it cost for them to process/operate a Jupiter variant?
Regards
Robert

Let me start by giving some initial context for my answer:

The fully operational Shuttle Program (pre- STS-107) cost the nation around $3.3 billion in FY2002.   That's about $4.1 billion when adjusted for today's inflation.

Since STS-107, the Shuttle Program has been in a winding-down phase and that has reduced its budget substantially, because it no longer has to pay for certain long-term things.   So we should always compare Shuttle's nominal operational costs based on a 'routine' schedule, not what we have actually seen over the last 9 years.   They are two distinctly different things.

It should also be noted that USA's commercial option was still in this 'shutting down' period.   Their proposal for two flights per year in support of ISS, while a replacement is developed, was only designed to be a short-term bridging solution.   It was never intended to be a permanently sustainable cost level and doesn't include many things that would be required if the program were to remain in place semi-permanently.

So, keeping that all in mind, here is my reply:


The general assumption for the Jupiter Program, was to retain the necessary workers and (modified) contracts from Shuttle, so that would have resulted in USA doing most of the processing work, with the various contractors supplying the hardware and support.   Over everything, NASA would provide its usual levels of oversight and additional support.

Without the Orbiter, the total amount of operational pre-flight work required is effectively halved and the budget would reflect that reduction.   But the Upper Stage then buys back a little of that, and the Orion another chunk.   Ultimately the budget would have been around $3.3 billion per year (FY11$) for a 6-flight (J-246) operation, with added Jupiter-246 flights costing about $230m each and Jupiter-130 flights about $150m each.


Now, when USA proposed the commercial Shuttle option we did re-evaluate a commercial Jupiter option too.   We found very similar budget level reductions as C-STS would have enjoyed.   As a ballpark, you can cut about 30% off the top of all those numbers, leaving a commercial Jupiter program at around $2.3 billion for the same 6 Jupiter-246 flights.

The big plus to this, is it retains very strong political support for NASA's top-line budget -- and that's the thing I'm most scared about right now.

Ross.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 06:42 PM
NEO is our goal by 2025. Mars by 2030s.

I have a question: What intrinsic advantage does SLS have in competing for Congressional dollars over a system like MPCV/Orion? Or what about another spacecraft other than MPCV/Orion? They both are well-supported by the House. You know why? Because people like 51D Mascot (and other industry experts) have convinced them that it is necessary. Any system can be zip-code-engineered to the extent needed to get Congressional approval.

Thus, what if we were developing another system like MPCV/Orion instead of SLS? What if we were developing a lander or SEV or Nautilus-X type of vehicle (along with some money to pay for on-orbit refueling) with the money being spent on SLS? MPCV/Orion is a new system, too, but it is getting SLS-like support from Congress. If 51D Mascot and his colleagues and the people here and at different NASA centers all started supporting such an approach, I'd have to believe Congress would listen to them, if it fit in the same overall NASA budget.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 07:10 PM
To Chuck or Ross:
In the DIRECT decision making process was there any consideration as who was going to process it like USA did for Shuttle. If they could operate Shuttle for 1.5B a years as it was claimed, what would it cost for them to process/operate a Jupiter variant?
Regards
Robert

Let me start by giving some initial context for my answer:

The fully operational Shuttle Program (pre- STS-107) cost the nation around $3.3 billion in FY2002.   That's about $4.1 billion when adjusted for today's inflation.

Since STS-107, the Shuttle Program has been in a winding-down phase and that has reduced its budget substantially, because it no longer has to pay for certain long-term things.   So we should always compare Shuttle's nominal operational costs based on a 'routine' schedule, not what we have actually seen over the last 9 years.   They are two distinctly different things.

It should also be noted that USA's commercial option was still in this 'shutting down' period.   Their proposal for two flights per year in support of ISS, while a replacement is developed, was only designed to be a short-term bridging solution.   It was never intended to be a permanently sustainable cost level and doesn't include many things that would be required if the program were to remain in place semi-permanently.

So, keeping that all in mind, here is my reply:


The general assumption for the Jupiter Program, was to retain the necessary workers and (modified) contracts from Shuttle, so that would have resulted in USA doing most of the processing work, with the various contractors supplying the hardware and support.   Over everything, NASA would provide its usual levels of oversight and additional support.

Without the Orbiter, the total amount of operational pre-flight work required is effectively halved and the budget would reflect that reduction.   But the Upper Stage then buys back a little of that, and the Orion another chunk.   Ultimately the budget would have been around $3.3 billion per year (FY11$) for a 6-flight (J-246) operation, with added Jupiter-246 flights costing about $230m each and Jupiter-130 flights about $150m each.


Now, when USA proposed the commercial Shuttle option we did re-evaluate a commercial Jupiter option too.   We found very similar budget level reductions as C-STS would have enjoyed.   As a ballpark, you can cut about 30% off the top of all those numbers, leaving a commercial Jupiter program at around $2.3 billion for the same 6 Jupiter-246 flights.

The big plus to this, is it retains very strong political support for NASA's top-line budget -- and that's the thing I'm most scared about right now.

Ross.
Thanks for the reply Ross,
Not to turn this into a DIRECT Q& A, but it seems to be a reasonable compromise of NASA SD heritage hardware and the efficiencies of commercial space.  Those were your cost estimates; I wonder if USA were to really look and cost it out what would it be? I was astounded by the 1.5B for Shuttle which is approximately half what is cost NASA to operate. Perhaps it could serve as a bridge to commercial instead of the “for or against” commercial space we have now. It could turn the heat down and serve other purposes such as employment for the affected districts. Someone at USA, NASA and or Congressional Committee really should look into this option rather than a stalemate.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/13/2011 08:37 PM
(In an on-topic response to the off-topic discussion which was justly removed:)

... And this is why we can't just assume NASA will get a growing budget. It's highly unlikely (because of the coming demographic shift), as much as I am trying to push for it.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/13/2011 08:37 PM
Thread trimmed of off-topicness. PS Don't just post "Mods, it's off topic" as we don't read every post. Report it and the avoid respond to it ;D

Also, I know a lot of you have reported the "don't frakking go there!" 51L mention, but OV-106 ably dealt with that in one para.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Alpha Control on 07/13/2011 08:41 PM
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison calls for immediate public release of the SLS decision. Presser release today, 7/13/2011.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Ranking Member on the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, today called for immediate action by the Administration and the Office of Management and Budget on approval of NASA's heavy lift vehicle. The Senator's statement follows:

"Next week, the Space Shuttle Atlantis and her crew will return to earth, bringing an end to the final mission of the space shuttle program and an end to America's ability to launch humans into space.

"Last year, Congress passed, and the President signed, the 2010 NASA Authorization Act, which directed NASA to develop a new heavy lift launch capability to take astronauts out beyond Earth's orbit in a new multi-purpose crew vehicle.

"NASA has spent the past eight months re-studying options and variations of launch vehicles that have been looked at for years. They finally announced the plan to develop the crew vehicle, using the Orion design, in May. We now have it confirmed that a final technical design decision on the heavy lift vehicle was made three weeks ago, on June 20th. Although the studies leading to that design decision included independent cost estimates, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has deferred endorsing that technical decision until it can see another independent cost analysis for the project.

"No one questions the need to ensure the best understanding of program costs. We do that every year on an ongoing basis with every major NASA program, as we set spending levels in our annual budget. There is simply no need to defer announcing the vehicle design decision while awaiting yet another cost review.

"To do so only increases the real human cost that NASA employees and contractors are experiencing in the face of continued uncertainty about the future. Without a decision we will continue to lose skilled workers that we need to build the shuttle replacements. Besides the toll this will take on workers and their families, who have contributed so much to science, our national security, and the economy, it will be difficult and more costly to replace this invaluable human capital.

"We have the information to make a decision now, and I call on the Administration and OMB to immediately make public and approve NASA's technical design decision on the heavy lift vehicle."

http://hutchison.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=667


Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/13/2011 08:47 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Andrewwski on 07/13/2011 08:49 PM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage and Orbital's Taurus engine having quality control difficulties. Yea, Commercial is the way to go people. Let's see, I think there's a barf bag around here somewhere.

26 Atlas V flight successful
15 Delta IV flights successful

Me thinks you are ignoring a good chunk of commercial

How many humans? 0.

How many humans has SLS Launched? 
Hell, how many times has SLS period? 



Shuttle technology? Which IS what SLS will be made from. 135 missions of crews from 2 to 7.

You're not really defending your point, and your second question made no sense, but if you mean how many times launched? 135

I'm not seeing this argument working either way.  Yes, SLS is based off shuttle, but it's still going to be different - vastly different - and I don't see how comparing to shuttle justifies that it will succeed with more or less certainty.

Delta and Atlas have launched successfully many times as well.  Sure, they haven't launched humans...but SLS hasn't either!  I don't think many people argue anymore that an EELV couldn't launch humans.  Obviously with some modifications - but the modifications to launch humans on an EELV are certainly no greater than shuttle to SLS.

So I guess I don't really see either side of this argument as more correct.  They don't need to necessarily be at odds with each other.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 08:59 PM
General Bolden had an interesting response to a question comparing the Russian vs. the US approach to spaceflight. He called the “Russian approach evolutionary and the American revolutionary”. Since we are now relying again on the Russians “evolutionary rocket” to get us in to space (the ultimate form of outsourcing jobs in my opinion).  We should learn a lesson from our Russian friends and create our own reliable sustainable “evolutionary” rocket via the DIRECT Jupiter variant, which provides the growth options as are required down the road.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 09:20 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?


Ok so Now I can put the the fire in my hair out. I was hoping to see this and I have: Congress is going to enforce its own laws after all.


They are going to get the report one way or another, but we can all hope that its not by force and that the white house backs down. Its a staring contest to see who blinks first. I doubt Congress is going to blink, IMO the only thing stopping them now is the debt crisis (and in the grand scheme of things it is more pressing a matter). Once that's resolved then they will make their move.

Interestingly there are several other Congressional investigations into WH or WH overseen agency policies that are currently on standby right now. A new one I found out about today apparently involves a potential mis-use of federal resources by the president to support his raising of currently 86 million dollars in 2012 campaign funds. I highly doubt this particular matter pans out into anything at all but its interesting it came up.

Two others I know of are one relating the Health Care reform act the other is an investigation into the ATF to, I guess, try and find someone to pin the "fast and furious" failure on.



So this is not the only thing that may have an upcoming congressional investigation.



In response to your comment Chris, they probably panic. But it wasn't their idea it was the WH's idea, that much is obvious.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: ArbitraryConstant on 07/13/2011 09:32 PM
It strikes me as a little ironic that the Administration is putting all its eggs in the Commercial basket and frustrating Congress' plan to continue USGov HSF, while at the same time SpaceX is having so much difficulty with the loss of its last F9 1st stage
I take it you weren't aware NASA's contracts with SpaceX explicitly use a new vehicle every launch, as do SpaceX's commercial launch contracts.

They don't have to recover or reuse any Falcon stages to meet any of these obligations.

I also wonder, while on this subject, if some of those opposed to SLS are because of the mess of CxP? Had the VSE/ESAS been based around a SLS, would those people be less opposed?

I ask, as I can't really blame people for being wary of things because of what happened with CxP.
It's not just CxP, but that's a lot of it.

It also looks a lot like it was designed around the jobs, facilities, and technologies it would require rather than its utility as a launch vehicle. Utility suffers accordingly. I don't blame the workers, this is mismanagement from the highest levels. It's difficult to cut costs when requirements are intentionally written in such a way as to keep costs high. This is unfortunate but not unique to aerospace, but when costs come down it's usually because not as many workers are required.

It's also the fact that there's no payloads apart from MPCV, which can be launched on EELV, and apart from some very thin excuses against human rating EELV, doesn't appear to require SLS. HLV advocates place a great deal of importance on the payloads and missions that are claimed to require HLV, but even if true, none of these have any chance of being ready when SLS is supposed to be ready. If we were serious about these missions, the payloads would be developed concurrently. This makes SLS look a lot like a jobs program to which actual missions and payloads would be superfluous, which is why none of the relentless defenders at the federal level spend much time worrying about that, or have any intention of funding NASA at that level.

Assuming we don't live in a fairy tale where all these problems magically go away, the sacrifices to pay for SD HLV lead to an even worse outcome than simply working within the limitations of EELV/SpaceX/CCDev.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: beb on 07/13/2011 09:38 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
"Ranking member" means she's the most senior member of the minority party on the committee. She doesn't get to set the agenda, the committee chairman (a Demoncrat) does. Also she's retiring at the end of her term so she's essentially a lame duck.

So how does NASA and the OMB respond to that? They work for the President, not for Congress. If he doesn't want to release the report just yet..... then the report doesn't get released. She can bluster all she wants but the administration will just ignore her.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/13/2011 09:41 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
"Ranking member" means she's the most senior member of the minority party on the committee. She doesn't get to set the agenda, the committee chairman (a Demoncrat) does. Also she's retiring at the end of her term so she's essentially a lame duck.

So how does NASA and the OMB respond to that? They work for the President, not for Congress. If he doesn't want to release the report just yet..... then the report doesn't get released. She can bluster all she wants but the administration will just ignore her.

Ok, thanks Beb.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/13/2011 09:45 PM
Assuming we don't live in a fairy tale where all these problems magically go away, the sacrifices to pay for SD HLV lead to an even worse outcome than simply working within the limitations of EELV/SpaceX/CCDev.

Two things:

1) as I said earlier, if SLS goes away it is very unlikely that NASA will get to keep the money.  So even if it never gets used, it's a wash.  At least.  More likely it's shielding NASA from even worse cuts.

2) your conclusion above is unjustified handwaving that does not follow from your argument.  Also, I believe you've overstated the problems, and the legislation mandates efforts to solve them in any case - the HSF decadal survey, most notably, which is supposed to use the goals of the 2005 and 2008 Authorization Acts; ie: the VSE.  (Not to mention you've conveniently ignored the BA-2100 in your 'no payloads' argument; everyone does that for some reason.)

It's a shame Ares seems to have put people off SDLV.  Ares was not an SDLV.  It just looked like one.  (Okay, two...)  DIRECT was not just a slightly superior alternative - it was a vastly superior alternative.  I think the mess that was Ares I is more an indication of the fundamental flaws in the rocket concept than of any endemic incompetence in MSFC's engineers.  Griffin told them to make it work, and if the government hadn't pulled the plug, they'd have done it...  now that they've been through that trial by fire, a Jupiter-like SLS should be a cakewalk (relatively speaking).
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/13/2011 09:47 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
"Ranking member" means she's the most senior member of the minority party on the committee. She doesn't get to set the agenda, the committee chairman (a Demoncrat) does. Also she's retiring at the end of her term so she's essentially a lame duck.

So how does NASA and the OMB respond to that? They work for the President, not for Congress. If he doesn't want to release the report just yet..... then the report doesn't get released. She can bluster all she wants but the administration will just ignore her.

Ok, thanks Beb.

Oh my.  I think 51D if he comes around is likely best to answer.  However, I think the reality of the situation is quite a bit different than beb's rather sterile (no offense intended) description of this. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Halidon on 07/13/2011 09:47 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
They do what they want to do, or rather what the President wants them to do, and they may publish the numbers just to keep the esteemed Senator happy. But one senator cannot compel OMB to do anything. It is a Cabinet-level office of the Executive branch, within the Executive Office of the President of the United States. They report to the President and his Chief of Staff. If the Congress wants to come together and attempt to compel information from OMB via passing legislation, they can try. I don't know the precedent in detail but I'd be surprised if internal OMB numbers have ever been extracted from an Administration against its will.

The Congress does have the General Accounting Office, which they can use to investigate the various SLS configurations and budgets in much the same manner as the President uses the OMB.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/13/2011 09:54 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
They do what they want to do, and they may publish the numbers just to keep the esteemed Senator happy. But one senator cannot compel OMB to do anything. It is a Cabinet-level office of the Executive branch, within the Executive Office of the President of the United States. They report to the President and his Chief of Staff. If the Congress wants to come together and attempt to compel information from OMB via passing legislation, they can try. I don't know the precedent in detail but I'd be surprised if internal OMB numbers have ever been extracted from an Administration against its will.

The Congress does have the General Accounting Office, which they can use to investigate the various SLS configurations and budgets in much the same manner as the President uses the OMB.

This is a pure over-reaction.  I suggest you read the letter again.  She did not say a cost analysis should not be done, again quite the opposite.  She said the technical details of the design, that the Administrator has selected, should be released. 

In this same vain, the statement the General made yesterday about not being able to give cost and schedule unitl PDR is hog-wash.  If that is indeed the case, how can OMB or anyone else study it to "verify it"?  While cost and schedule need to constantly be updated based on technical requirements (and all must stay within balance with respect to each other), you cannot get to PDR until you have a rough idea of technical requirements, cost and schedule.......and people working on it. 

In short, there is no reason - NONE - that the technical details of the launch vehicle cannot be released. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Halidon on 07/13/2011 10:00 PM
This is a pure over-reaction.  I suggest you read the letter again.  She did not say a cost analysis should not be done, again quite the opposite.  She said the technical details of the design, that the Administrator has selected, should be released. 

In this same vain, the statement the General made yesterday about not being able to give cost and schedule unitl PDR is hog-wash.  While cost and schedule need to constantly be updated based on technical requirements (and all must stay within balance with respect to each other), you cannot get to PDR until you have a rough idea of technical requirements, cost and schedule.......and people working on it. 

In short, there is no reason - NONE - that the technical details of the launch vehicle cannot be released. 
You did not ask the question, Chris did. He asked what reaction this "call" by the esteemed Senator could get out of NASA and the OMB. Being more familiar with the latter, I answered his question. Whether not what she requests "should be" released I was not addressing, nor do I now.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/13/2011 10:01 PM
So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?

I'm just guessing...

A public call for documentation won't worry anyone greatly, beyond potential "embarrassment" for those targeted.   I doubt it will embarrass the Administration, so I don't think they'll react.

I doubt anyone will actually react to this, except perhaps the trade press.   It has no teeth.


Now, a letter from the Senate/House with a date saying "deliver by XYZ or you will be found in contempt of Congress and will be jailed", that would be quite different.

Ross.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Namechange User on 07/13/2011 10:05 PM
This is a pure over-reaction.  I suggest you read the letter again.  She did not say a cost analysis should not be done, again quite the opposite.  She said the technical details of the design, that the Administrator has selected, should be released. 

In this same vain, the statement the General made yesterday about not being able to give cost and schedule unitl PDR is hog-wash.  While cost and schedule need to constantly be updated based on technical requirements (and all must stay within balance with respect to each other), you cannot get to PDR until you have a rough idea of technical requirements, cost and schedule.......and people working on it. 

In short, there is no reason - NONE - that the technical details of the launch vehicle cannot be released. 
You did not ask the question, Chris did. He asked what reaction this "call" by the esteemed Senator could get out of NASA and the OMB. Being more familiar with the latter, I answered his question. Whether not what she requests "should be" released I was not addressing, nor do I now.

You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 10:13 PM
I take it you weren't aware NASA's contracts with SpaceX explicitly use a new vehicle every launch, as do SpaceX's commercial launch contracts...They don't have to recover or reuse any Falcon stages to meet any of these obligations.

I am "aware" of a great deal more than you could possibly know. My statement had absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the stage could be recovered or reused or not.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 10:16 PM
Now, a letter from the Senate/House with a date saying "deliver by XYZ or you will be found in contempt of Congress and will be jailed", that would be quite different.

Ross.

I am so pis*ed at HQ and the WH that I would not object if this happened. Will it? We'll see.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: A_M_Swallow on 07/13/2011 10:18 PM
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Ranking Member on the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, today called for immediate action by the Administration and the Office of Management and Budget on approval of NASA's heavy lift vehicle. The Senator's statement follows:

"Next week, the Space Shuttle Atlantis and her crew will return to earth, bringing an end to the final mission of the space shuttle program and an end to America's ability to launch humans into space.

{snip}

"We have the information to make a decision now, and I call on the Administration and OMB to immediately make public and approve NASA's technical design decision on the heavy lift vehicle."


This is a splendid invitation to the President to make a "pass the baton" speech, like they do at the end of the Olympic Games.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/13/2011 10:20 PM
I am so pis*ed at HQ and the WH that I would not object if this happened. Will it? We'll see.

The job losses have been bad so far, but next month they are going to go into overdrive.

I think its LONG past time for Congress to have shown its teeth.   Even though the President's FY11 budget appears to have at least woken-up the drivers, I still don't see anyone actually reaching for the steering wheel.

With less than a month to go, I fear it is already far too late for the majority of the good people who have dedicated their entire lives to NASA.

I believe this to be a dreadful case of too little, too late.

Ross.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Halidon on 07/13/2011 10:23 PM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: ArbitraryConstant on 07/13/2011 10:23 PM
1) as I said earlier, if SLS goes away it is very unlikely that NASA will get to keep the money.  So even if it never gets used, it's a wash.  At least.  More likely it's shielding NASA from even worse cuts.
As has been observed by others, it looks a lot like the only funding SLS protects is SLS funding. Other programs get far deeper cuts in the proposed budget.

(Not to mention you've conveniently ignored the BA-2100 in your 'no payloads' argument; everyone does that for some reason.)
I can't speak for anyone else, but I didn't ignore it. I concluded equivalent habitable volume could be provided by assembling smaller modules.

That's the sort of thinking I'm arguing against. If you decide you need HLV because it would take ~6 EELV launches or ~3 FH launches, what probably happens is that you get no station. You might not even get HLV.

I didn't want to lean too much on the commercial argument because I don't think it's necessary, but frankly the only reason the BA-2100 concept has been developed as far as it has is because Bigelow Aerospace doesn't rely on congressional largesse. That's also why they can get away with proposing a lunar architecture that doesn't need HLV.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 10:30 PM
The General used the phrase "proprietary information" during the hearing yesterday to avoid the release of information. There was an interesting comment about the phrase “proprietary information" during the last COTS hearing. “There is nothing proprietary when it is paid for by the taxpayers” I wish I could recall who said it. One of the more senior members IIRC.  How valid is that? Any legal opinions?
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Alpha Control on 07/13/2011 10:33 PM
To Beb's point: The fact that she's a "lame duck" and not running for re-election doesn't mean her words are necessarily less effective. Remember, she worked with Democrat Bill Nelson to develop the Senate alternative to Obama's plan last year. He (and others) may respond to what she has to say.

Overall, her points were two-fold:
(1) The design has been studied to death.
(2) Dragging this out continues to hurt our valuable workforce.

I think it is intended to embarrass HQ & (indirectly, perhaps) the WH. I hope it works. As to what Congress can force OMB to do or not to do, I hope that 51D can shed some light on that for us.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: sdsds on 07/13/2011 10:34 PM
Glad to see KBH understands that now is the time.  This is yet another shot across the bow.  Eventually you take a shot aimed at the rigging.  I am not a constitutional scholar, but if Congressional leadership (not an individual member) wants action, the Attorney General of the United States, albeit a member of the Administration, is required to respond, i.e. summon a federal grand jury.

United States Code, Title 2, Chapter 6.
Congressional And Committee Procedure; Investigations
Quote
Whenever a witness summoned as mentioned in section 192 of this title fails to appear to testify or fails to produce any books, papers, rec­ords, or documents, as required, or whenever any witness so summoned refuses to answer any question pertinent to the subject under inquiry before either House, or any joint committee established by a joint or concurrent resolution of the two Houses of Congress, or any committee or subcommittee of either House of Congress, and the fact of such failure or failures is reported to either House while Congress is in session or when Congress is not in session, a statement of fact constituting such failure is reported to and filed with the President of the Senate or the Speaker of the House, it shall be the duty of the said President of the Senate or Speaker of the House, as the case may be, to certify, and he shall so certify, the statement of facts aforesaid under the seal of the Senate or House, as the case may be, to the appropriate United States attorney, whose duty it shall be to bring the matter before the grand jury for its action.
http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/United_States_Code/Title_2/Chapter_6#.C2.A7_194._Certification_of_failure_to_testify_or_produce.3B_grand_jury_action
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 10:34 PM
I am so pis*ed at HQ and the WH that I would not object if this happened. Will it? We'll see.

The job losses have been bad so far, but next month they are going to go into overdrive.

I think its LONG past time for Congress to have shown its teeth.   Even though the President's FY11 budget appears to have at least woken-up the drivers, I still don't see anyone actually reaching for the steering wheel.

With less than a month to go, I fear it is already far too late for the majority of the good people who have dedicated their entire lives to NASA.

I believe this to be a dreadful case of too little, too late.

Ross.

I seem to recall publishing a paper way back in the day with you that outlined in detail this very scenario. Nobody believed us then. It's a bitter pill indeed to be proven right for such a dire prediction.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: deskpro590 on 07/13/2011 10:40 PM
In reviewing the statements by the Committe hearing and reviewing the posts it caused me to look back on NASA's past and how I thiink we got here... Now I'm simply a fan of NASA and manned space flight in General, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.... :)

To me, NASA's (and this Nation's) great achievements have been the result of having a clearly defined goal and taking the steps necessary to achieve that goal.  There would never have been an Apollo 11 without the decision we made in 1961 to put a man on the Moon.  Most would agree that the driving force behind that decision was the Cold War and resultant 'Space Race' between us and the Soviets. Maybe, that's the reason we are where we are now.  Trying to build a launch vehicle/capsule with no clearly defined destination to send it.
 
You could point the finger at the current administration and say the blame lies with them.  The squabbling between Congress and the White House over budgetary items....or the White House canceling the Moon mission planned by the previous administration. 

The previous administration did set out to send man back to the Moon in the aftermath of the Columbia accident, but it was sketched out financially through 2008 with no clear roadmap to the return to the Moon.  Would that have been different if there was an outside force pushing us?  Cold War?...Competition with a rival Nations?  That was pre-'Great Recession'....

Maybe you could say the Nixon Administration suffered from the repeat Super Bowl Champion syndrome.  After the first couple of trips to the Moon, we got used to it and the question, "Is that all?" I think the reason Apollo 18 didn't happen though was purely financial.  Skylab, Apollo-Soyuz, and the Shuttle resulted....all LEO programs.....And what about developing a replacement for the Shuttle in the 90's?...ISS was the focus....

Now that it has been decreed that LEO belongs to Commercial Ventures, maybe NASA needs a mission statement and a defined purpose with clear goals.... and Selling those goals to the public...... "Go to Mars by 2030" ...the steps to achieve that goal Develop the necessary new technologies (space craft..propulsion..etc) to achieve that goal, and test those new technologies in a stepped fashion...a. return to Moon...b. visit Asteroid...c. Visit Mars

Just my two cents...and there's trillions more in that last paragraph. ;)

Hopefully I didn't come across as a Captain Obvious.

Dave S
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/13/2011 10:45 PM
The General used the phrase "proprietary information" during the hearing yesterday to avoid the release of information. There was an interesting comment about the phrase “proprietary information" during the last COTS hearing. “There is nothing proprietary when it is paid for by the taxpayers” I wish I could recall who said it. One of the more senior members IIRC.  How valid is that? Any legal opinions?
Regards
Robert

Legally, that opinion is incorrect.   Companies, even those who earn their money via government contract, are allowed to protect their own proprietary intellectual information.

*Should* it be the case?   I personally think all tax payer funded work should be publicly owned.   But that sadly isn't the case...

Ross.

PS - In this particular case, the General just can't claim its proprietary, because all of the companies have actually waived their proprietary rights claim WRT SLS and providing all the cost and technical information to the Congress.   So my question is this:   Is there a cover-up going on here?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 10:50 PM
Quote
 

In short, there is no reason - NONE - that the technical details of the launch vehicle cannot be released. 


Except that Obama didn't get what he wanted last year, so this year he figures ruining other people's ambitions is the best way to get back at them (and get back at them over being made to take blame for the debt crisis which ofc he helped create). 


Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/13/2011 11:01 PM
In reviewing the statements by the Committe hearing and reviewing the posts it caused me to look back on NASA's past and how I thiink we got here... Now I'm simply a fan of NASA and manned space flight in General, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.... :)

To me, NASA's (and this Nation's) great achievements have been the result of having a clearly defined goal and taking the steps necessary to achieve that goal.  There would never have been an Apollo 11 without the decision we made in 1961 to put a man on the Moon.  Most would agree that the driving force behind that decision was the Cold War and resultant 'Space Race' between us and the Soviets. Maybe, that's the reason we are where we are now.  Trying to build a launch vehicle/capsule with no clearly defined destination to send it.
 
You could point the finger at the current administration and say the blame lies with them.  The squabbling between Congress and the White House over budgetary items....or the White House canceling the Moon mission planned by the previous administration. 

The previous administration did set out to send man back to the Moon in the aftermath of the Columbia accident, but it was sketched out financially through 2008 with no clear roadmap to the return to the Moon.  Would that have been different if there was an outside force pushing us?  Cold War?...Competition with a rival Nations?  That was pre-'Great Recession'....

Maybe you could say the Nixon Administration suffered from the repeat Super Bowl Champion syndrome.  After the first couple of trips to the Moon, we got used to it and the question, "Is that all?" I think the reason Apollo 18 didn't happen though was purely financial.  Skylab, Apollo-Soyuz, and the Shuttle resulted....all LEO programs.....And what about developing a replacement for the Shuttle in the 90's?...ISS was the focus....

Now that it has been decreed that LEO belongs to Commercial Ventures, maybe NASA needs a mission statement and a defined purpose with clear goals.... and Selling those goals to the public...... "Go to Mars by 2030" ...the steps to achieve that goal Develop the necessary new technologies (space craft..propulsion..etc) to achieve that goal, and test those new technologies in a stepped fashion...a. return to Moon...b. visit Asteroid...c. Visit Mars

Just my two cents...and there's trillions more in that last paragraph. ;)

Hopefully I didn't come across as a Captain Obvious.

Dave S



I completely agree with you as does Congress, NASA needs a well defined plan with goals and timelines, and the report on the 8th was supposed to be a first step.


Now we can't even make the first step, because apparently Obama has decided since its not what he personally wants, it shouldn't happen, even if the law says otherwise.



Its up to Congress to take a stand.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 11:02 PM
The General used the phrase "proprietary information" during the hearing yesterday to avoid the release of information. There was an interesting comment about the phrase “proprietary information" during the last COTS hearing. “There is nothing proprietary when it is paid for by the taxpayers” I wish I could recall who said it. One of the more senior members IIRC.  How valid is that? Any legal opinions?
Regards
Robert

Legally, that opinion is incorrect.   Companies, even those who earn their money via government contract, are allowed to protect their own proprietary intellectual information.

*Should* it be the case?   I personally think all tax payer funded work should be publicly owned.   But that sadly isn't the case...

Ross.

PS - In this particular case, the General just can't claim its proprietary, because all of the companies have actually waived their proprietary rights claim WRT SLS and providing all the cost and technical information to the Congress.   So my question is this:   Is there a cover-up going on here?
As are most things political…  It is the cover-up that causes more problems than the indiscretion in the first place. We shall see…
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Pheogh on 07/13/2011 11:03 PM
So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?

I'm just guessing...

A public call for documentation won't worry anyone greatly, beyond potential "embarrassment" for those targeted.   I doubt it will embarrass the Administration, so I don't think they'll react.

I doubt anyone will actually react to this, except perhaps the trade press.   It has no teeth.


Now, a letter from the Senate/House with a date saying "deliver by XYZ or you will be found in contempt of Congress and will be jailed", that would be quite different.

Ross.

where's Nelson?, if I lived in Florida I would have the honorable Senator on speed dial right now, I couldn't have dreamed this if I had tried.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Tony Ostinato on 07/13/2011 11:07 PM
how can anyone refer to constellation as a "moon mission"?

that was pure fantasy, ares-1 couldnt go to the moon ever and if you watch its test flight side by side with spacex test flight its embarassing for nasa.

and worth cancelling after what was spent to produce that fiasco.

i have sympathy for the people at nasa whose fault its not but obama did the right thing shutting down that money pit.

if you cant produce half the results at twice the price you should be shut down.

explain to me how anything in the "moon mission" was a moon mission, i'd like to know how someone gets to where they can believe that.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/13/2011 11:09 PM
If you want space commerce beyond LEO, you need NASA.  If NASA is to do anything meaningful, it needs to know *why* and *how* (which have been my point for years now) it is to do it.  If it is to do it, and therefore any chance for commercial participation which could spin-off into other non-NASA centric applications in space, then it needs to know how it can get the greatest good for the lowest cost.

I actually agree with you on all of these points. At least for the foreseeable future, I don't see much hope of BEO commerce without NASA playing a critical role in making that feasible. And I agree on the importance of settling the why's and how's clearly. I even agree with you on the need for clear, measurable objectives along the way to reach those why's and how's. I will admit that I was being stubborn with you on the objectives part before, because I didn't have the framework of the rest of the "why's and how's" figured out yet and because of my concern about objectives not clearly tied to the why's and how's.

So yeah, I actually agree with you on this completely.

Quote
Depending on all the other factors, it very well could include SLS in that mix that offers the lowest total integrated mission costs.

It's possible. I'm pretty skeptical, especially about a Shuttle Derived SLS, but to be fair skepticism != certainty. I will admit that I could be wrong on this, though as you point out, without some agreement on the why's and how's it will be hard to shake me of my skepticism. Most of the studies NASA has done that show SDHLV solutions as "superior" have had assumptions I didn't agree with, and weren't aligned well with the "why's and how's" (which at least for the why's I'm guessing we probably agree at with each other at least 90%).

Quote
This is what is unknown.  This is what NASA is getting away with and for far to long people have been at each others throats about a rocket (and more specifically a particular design and flying off the handle based on what they think it represents) than asking the right questions. 

I actually agree with you, and wish that the WH had proposed a fully-coherent goal and strategy, and then worked to sell it to Congress and explain it to the public. While I liked a lot of the *tactical* elements in FY11, I've come to agree with you that they never clearly stated or sold the strategy. And without clearly stating a strategy, its very easy to attach completely different interpretations to the same strategy.

Case in point, the decision to do HLV propulsion work for five years instead of starting on an HLV right out of the gate. I can see how some people--in the absence of a clearly-defined strategy could take that as "studying things for five years when we already know how to build an HLV". It's also legit for others to take it as "we don't yet know how well certain technologies like depots and aerobraking will work out, and thus won't know how much HLV (if any) we actually need.  So let's preserve the option of doing an HLV in the future, but not commit to a specific design until we have the data to know how big of an HLV we actually need." Without a clearly expressed strategy, I can see your point on how it would be very difficult to determine which of those motives was really behind the tactical proposal the WH gave.

So yeah, I think we must have been in violent agreement, or talking past each other, because I agree that before we can determine whether SLS is a good idea or not, we need to know what we're trying to accomplish, and what our overarching strategy is for accomplishing that, and what measurable goals we have along the way.

My main beef with SLS is that we haven't figured out the why's and how's yet enough to know if it's even needed. And Congress doesn't seem to be very interested in actually doing that. And even though we don't know the why's and how's enough to justify it, SLS is getting the lion's share of the budget for new developments at NASA (3x the combined total of all technology and commercial-focused efforts). 

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/13/2011 11:14 PM
how can anyone refer to constellation as a "moon mission"?

that was pure fantasy, ares-1 couldnt go to the moon ever and if you watch its test flight side by side with spacex test flight its embarassing for nasa.

and worth cancelling after what was spent to produce that fiasco.

i have sympathy for the people at nasa whose fault its not but obama did the right thing shutting down that money pit.

if you cant produce half the results at twice the price you should be shut down.

explain to me how anything in the "moon mission" was a moon mission, i'd like to know how someone gets to where they can believe that.

Ares I was never going to the moon, Orion was ;) Ares I-X was a suborbital test. CxP was shutdown a long time ago (as much as officially it didn't until lately). FY2011 was a poor alternative and rightly given the boot.

Baffled at the rest of your comments. The VSE moon mission? How was it a moon mission? Errmm.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kch on 07/13/2011 11:21 PM
how can anyone refer to constellation as a "moon mission"?

that was pure fantasy, ares-1 couldnt go to the moon ever and if you watch its test flight side by side with spacex test flight its embarassing for nasa.

and worth cancelling after what was spent to produce that fiasco.

i have sympathy for the people at nasa whose fault its not but obama did the right thing shutting down that money pit.

if you cant produce half the results at twice the price you should be shut down.

explain to me how anything in the "moon mission" was a moon mission, i'd like to know how someone gets to where they can believe that.

Ares I was never going to the moon, Orion was ;) Ares I-X was a suborbital test. CxP was shutdown a long time ago (as much as officially it didn't until lately). FY2011 was a poor alternative and rightly given the boot.

Baffled at the rest of your comments. The VSE moon mission? How was it a moon mission? Errmm.

+1 on the "baffled" -- maybe our friend isn't aware of what Constellation was intended to be.  This might help:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constellation_program

:)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/13/2011 11:25 PM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
"Ranking member" means she's the most senior member of the minority party on the committee. She doesn't get to set the agenda, the committee chairman (a Demoncrat) does. Also she's retiring at the end of her term so she's essentially a lame duck.

So how does NASA and the OMB respond to that? They work for the President, not for Congress. If he doesn't want to release the report just yet..... then the report doesn't get released. She can bluster all she wants but the administration will just ignore her.

Ok, thanks Beb.

Sorry, Beb, but you really need to do some more looking into how the US Senate works. In an era where unanimous consent is needed for virtually anything to happen, from confirmation of nominees to adoption of amendments, to passage of key legislation, and where voting majorities are very slender, one Senator of any party can be crucial at some point in time to a President pursuing his own agenda. There really aren't "lame ducks" in the Senate for that very reason. So, while the Administration certainly "Can" simply ignore any single Senator, it would not be in their best interest to do so. In this case I think you can expect some action from the Administration and/or NASA before the end of the week. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 11:26 PM
I wonder if any legal congressional action is being held off until the safe return of STS-135. Washington is all about the “optics’ in any given situation. If that is the case, then I can wait another week. They can spend the time sharpening their “collective teeth” if they have any. Don’t hold your breath with the “do nothing congress”…
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: kraisee on 07/13/2011 11:30 PM
where's Nelson?, if I lived in Florida I would have the honorable Senator on speed dial right now, I couldn't have dreamed this if I had tried.

Dunno.   He's been stunningly quiet on the whole subject recently.

His party leader is the President, so that may have something to do with it.

And the general expectation around here seems to be that most of the staff released from KSC will be leaving Florida to seek work elsewhere, so it is possible that he may not be worried about them voting against him in his next election.

All IMHO.

Ross.

PS - For that matter, where's Shelby gone too?   And Vitter hasn't been around much either.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Pheogh on 07/13/2011 11:35 PM
I can't help but have a picture in my head of all of them frantically stuffing suitcases while the car is running at the curb.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: JohnF on 07/13/2011 11:38 PM
Already sent an email to Nelson, as have others too I bet.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 11:40 PM
I can't help but have a picture in my head of all of them frantically stuffing suitcases while the car is running at the curb.

Jerry the Bat is making his rounds
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/13/2011 11:41 PM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 11:43 PM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.

Oh you're teasing me again  ;)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: mr_magoo on 07/13/2011 11:48 PM
Maybe Nelson and Shelby aren't particularly worried about a final round of OMB bean counting.   Maybe they have their ears to the railroad tracks and are more concerned with the House budget,  or any potential mention of NASA during the deficit talks.

There are no shortages of threats today.   
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: simonbp on 07/13/2011 11:51 PM
PS - For that matter, where's Shelby gone too?

Helping to drag out the decision, so as to keep the (Alabama-built) AJ-26-500 boosters in the mix...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/13/2011 11:52 PM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
That would be political suicide for them, so then they could claim the title of “destroying spaceflight” That I fear would be an empty threat.
Regards
Robert
P.S. Thanks always for all the hard work and information :)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/13/2011 11:56 PM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
That would be political suicide for them, so then they could claim the title of “destroying spaceflight” That I fear would be an empty threat.
Regards
Robert
P.S. Thanks always for all the hard work and information :)

Not if the dismantling of the corrupted agency was accompanied by the creation of a replacement agency.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/13/2011 11:57 PM
1) as I said earlier, if SLS goes away it is very unlikely that NASA will get to keep the money.  So even if it never gets used, it's a wash.  At least.  More likely it's shielding NASA from even worse cuts.
As has been observed by others, it looks a lot like the only funding SLS protects is SLS funding. Other programs get far deeper cuts in the proposed budget.

Isn't that more or less what I just said, except from a different perspective?

Look at it this way.  Even if SLS only protects SLS funding, as you say, if it goes away that funding is lost.  So nothing else benefits if SLS is cancelled.

In other words, NASA can effectively get an HLV for free.  And operate it for free too, if the ops budget plays in Congress the same way the dev budget does...

If I'm right about the cuts elsewhere being even worse without SLS running interference, then the HLV is a positive benefit to everything else NASA does, even if it's never used.

Suboptimal?  Definitely.  So is democracy.  Got a better idea?

Quote
(Not to mention you've conveniently ignored the BA-2100 in your 'no payloads' argument; everyone does that for some reason.)
I can't speak for anyone else, but I didn't ignore it. I concluded equivalent habitable volume could be provided by assembling smaller modules.

That's the sort of thinking I'm arguing against. If you decide you need HLV because it would take ~6 EELV launches or ~3 FH launches, what probably happens is that you get no station. You might not even get HLV.

I didn't want to lean too much on the commercial argument because I don't think it's necessary, but frankly the only reason the BA-2100 concept has been developed as far as it has is because Bigelow Aerospace doesn't rely on congressional largesse. That's also why they can get away with proposing a lunar architecture that doesn't need HLV.

...so you think the BA-2100 is a shining example of commercial operating without government restraints, and that it's a bloated white elephant that should be replaced with clustered Sundancers and BA-330s?

All I'm saying is that it constitutes a proposed payload that's too large for anything but SLS.  It is therefore erroneous to claim that there are no payloads but Orion.  (You also ignored the proposed Orion+DHCUS cislunar stack, judging by the comment about EELVs being sufficient...)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/14/2011 12:01 AM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
That would be political suicide for them, so then they could claim the title of “destroying spaceflight” That I fear would be an empty threat.
Regards
Robert
P.S. Thanks always for all the hard work and information :)

Correct, it likely would be political suicide; but that wasn't my point, which was sort of why I put the quotes around "power": Just to underscore they "could."

Too many folks seem to think that NASA is an "entitlement" and a repository, along with the rest of the federal bureaucracy, of "eternal life." I just like to occasionally throw out a reminder that it "ain't necessarily so." As to how empty a threat it might be, I hope a VERY empty one, myself (since I was only raising it as a hypothetical), but in this day and age I wouldn't bet the farm on anything being a certainty.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/14/2011 12:08 AM
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison calls for immediate public release of the SLS decision. Presser release today, 7/13/2011.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Ranking Member on the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, today called for immediate action by the Administration and the Office of Management and Budget on approval of NASA's heavy lift vehicle. The Senator's statement follows:

http://hutchison.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=667


Somehow I knew Senator Hutchison would do something.  Thumbs up for you!

Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/14/2011 12:13 AM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
That would be political suicide for them, so then they could claim the title of “destroying spaceflight” That I fear would be an empty threat.
Regards
Robert
P.S. Thanks always for all the hard work and information :)

Correct, it likely would be political suicide; but that wasn't my point, which was sort of why I put the quotes around "power": Just to underscore they "could."

Too many folks seem to think that NASA is an "entitlement" and a repository, along with the rest of the federal bureaucracy, of "eternal life." I just like to occasionally throw out a reminder that it "ain't necessarily so." As to how empty a threat it might be, I hope a VERY empty one, myself (since I was only raising it as a hypothetical), but in this day and age I wouldn't bet the farm on anything being a certainty.
Yes, we are living in interesting times! It would be a sad thing for an agency that inspired me on my path in life from the first Mercury flight right up STS-135. I think most would agree that my NASA is not today’s NASA… But same can be said of the nation as a whole regretfully…
Regards
Robert
NASA 2.0 … why not?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/14/2011 12:16 AM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
"Ranking member" means she's the most senior member of the minority party on the committee. She doesn't get to set the agenda, the committee chairman (a Demoncrat) does. Also she's retiring at the end of her term so she's essentially a lame duck.

So how does NASA and the OMB respond to that? They work for the President, not for Congress. If he doesn't want to release the report just yet..... then the report doesn't get released. She can bluster all she wants but the administration will just ignore her.

Perfect..Wonder if the good Senator would like to replace Bolden. 

btw: you underestimate what a Senator can do.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Pheogh on 07/14/2011 12:18 AM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
That would be political suicide for them, so then they could claim the title of “destroying spaceflight” That I fear would be an empty threat.
Regards
Robert
P.S. Thanks always for all the hard work and information :)

Correct, it likely would be political suicide; but that wasn't my point, which was sort of why I put the quotes around "power": Just to underscore they "could."

Too many folks seem to think that NASA is an "entitlement" and a repository, along with the rest of the federal bureaucracy, of "eternal life." I just like to occasionally throw out a reminder that it "ain't necessarily so." As to how empty a threat it might be, I hope a VERY empty one, myself (since I was only raising it as a hypothetical), but in this day and age I wouldn't bet the farm on anything being a certainty.
Yes, we are living in interesting times! It would be a sad thing for an agency that inspired me on my path in life from the first Mercury flight right up STS-135. I think most would agree that my NASA is not today’s NASA… But same can be said of the nation as a whole regretfully…
Regards
Robert
NASA 2.0 … why not?


Has it ever been suggested that the various directorates be separated out into their own agencies? Just asking, so that the funding priorities are more clearly defined? So perhaps not dissolve NASA but instead shave of the HSFP into it's own agency and put a new head over it under congressional purview.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: yg1968 on 07/14/2011 02:04 AM
Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.
And that's actually a good thing. A high launch rate is essential to there ever being an economically viable reusable launch vehicle.

I don't remember which document said this but I believe that something like 600 EELV flights would be required to get to Mars...

Sorry yg, your posts are usually really informative, but that 600 flights number just sounds completely bogus.  Even if you pick the smallest EELV, that's 6000mT in LEO.  That would take almost 50x 130mT SDHLV launches, or at least 4 years worth of SDHLV launches even using the most optimistic DIRECT numbers, and a budget to match them. If that was what it took to make it to Mars, we should just flat out give up hope right now.

Fortunately, it's not. If you take an approach like what Jeff Greason was proposing (the planet-hopping strategy of setting up ISRU infrastructure on the Moon and Phobos/Deimos first), the amount you need to launch from LEO for any Mars mission from there drops precipitously.  Quite frankly, unless NASA gets a 2x budget increase, I think an indirect, planet-hopping depot-centric architecture is likely going to get people on Mars sooner (and a lot more sustainably, and with a lot more on-the-ground capability) than the more direct SDHLV route.

~Jon

I can't find any documents where the number of flights was detailed for Mars. The only document that I found was the August 2010 HEFT document on L2 which mentionned 15 flights for a NEO asuming that a 28mt EELV was built. So my number was indeed bogus... Sorry for the confusion that I may have caused.  I should have checked before posting that.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/14/2011 02:09 AM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
That would be political suicide for them, so then they could claim the title of “destroying spaceflight” That I fear would be an empty threat.
Regards
Robert
P.S. Thanks always for all the hard work and information :)

Correct, it likely would be political suicide; but that wasn't my point, which was sort of why I put the quotes around "power": Just to underscore they "could."

Too many folks seem to think that NASA is an "entitlement" and a repository, along with the rest of the federal bureaucracy, of "eternal life." I just like to occasionally throw out a reminder that it "ain't necessarily so." As to how empty a threat it might be, I hope a VERY empty one, myself (since I was only raising it as a hypothetical), but in this day and age I wouldn't bet the farm on anything being a certainty.
Yes, we are living in interesting times! It would be a sad thing for an agency that inspired me on my path in life from the first Mercury flight right up STS-135. I think most would agree that my NASA is not today’s NASA… But same can be said of the nation as a whole regretfully…
Regards
Robert
NASA 2.0 … why not?


Has it ever been suggested that the various directorates be separated out into their own agencies? Just asking, so that the funding priorities are more clearly defined? So perhaps not dissolve NASA but instead shave of the HSFP into it's own agency and put a new head over it under congressional purview.

Actually, it has been discussed at different times over the years, including the not too distant past. Usually it's in the vein of breaking aeronautics research out--removing the first "A" in "NASA"--as a means of "protecting" that Directorate--which is heavily research and technology-oriented--from being "raided" by the generally more costly program management directorates like SOMD, ESMD and SMD. Then it ends up drawing in a discussion of whether it should be sent to FAA or Department of Commerce, or some other area, and pretty soon it gets dropped or put on the back burner for another day. Recently, there have also been suggestions of reworking the structure to put all pure science and research or technology into one organizational bin and all flight/operations programs into another. But you always get the issues of the ten NASA Centers and how to keep them "healthy" with diversified tasking, etc., so they don't ebb and flow with work as priorities shift from one program to another, etc., and it all gets too complicated to provide a clear solution.

But read sections 1102 and 1103 of the 2010 NASA Authorization Act (inserted below) and you can see where some thought has been given to laying the groundwork for considering organizational, managerial, even structural changes. It's not quite a "BRAC"-type effort, but could conceivably lead in that direction. (BRAC="Base Realignment and Closure" process, whereby an independent entity is tasked to recommend consolidations, relocation, closures, etc. of military bases and operations.)

"SEC. 1102. INSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENTS STUDY. Within 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall provide to the appropriate committees of Congress a comprehensive study that, taking into account the long term direction provided by this Act, carefully examines NASA’s structure, organization, and institutional assets and identifies a strategy to evolve toward the most efficient retention, sizing, and distribution of facilities, laboratories, test capabilities, and other infrastructure consistent with NASA’s missions and mandates. The Administrator should pay particular attention to identifying and removing unneeded or duplicative infrastructure. The Administrator should include in the study a suggested reconfiguration and reinvestment strategy that would conform the needed equipment, facilities, test equipment, and related organizational alignment that would best meet the requirements of missions and priorities authorized and directed by this Act. As part of this strategy, the Administrator should include consideration and application of the findings and recommendations of the National Research Council report,
Capabilities for the Future: An Assessment of NASA Laboratories for Basic Research, prepared in response to section 1003 of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2008 (42 U.S.C. 17812)."

"SEC. 1103. NASA CAPABILITIES STUDY REQUIREMENT. Upon completion of the study required by Section 1102, the Administrator shall establish an independent panel to examine alternative management models for NASA’s workforce, centers, and related facilities in order to improve efficiency and productivity, while nonetheless maintaining core Federal competencies and
keeping appropriately governmental functions internal to NASA. The study shall include a recommended implementation strategy, which shall identify any additional legislative authorities necessary to enable implementation of the recommended strategy, including recommended actions to provide aid and assistance to eligible communities to mitigate adverse impacts resulting from implementation of the proposed strategy. The Administrator shall provide the results of this study to the appropriate committees of Congress within 1 year after the date on which the study is begun."
 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Alpha Control on 07/14/2011 03:21 AM
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison calls for immediate public release of the SLS decision. Presser release today, 7/13/2011.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Ranking Member on the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, today called for immediate action by the Administration and the Office of Management and Budget on approval of NASA's heavy lift vehicle. The Senator's statement follows:

http://hutchison.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=667


Somehow I knew Senator Hutchison would do something.  Thumbs up for you!



Thanks Prober. I was glad to spot it and to share it with the NSF community.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: neilh on 07/14/2011 03:32 AM
But read sections 1102 and 1103 of the 2010 NASA Authorization Act (inserted below) and you can see where some thought has been given to laying the groundwork for considering organizational, managerial, even structural changes. It's not quite a "BRAC"-type effort, but could conceivably lead in that direction. (BRAC="Base Realignment and Closure" process, whereby an independent entity is tasked to recommend consolidations, relocation, closures, etc. of military bases and operations.)

"SEC. 1102. INSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENTS STUDY. Within 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall provide to the appropriate committees of Congress a comprehensive study that, taking into account the long term direction provided by this Act, carefully examines NASA’s structure, organization, and institutional assets and identifies a strategy to evolve toward the most efficient retention, sizing, and distribution of facilities, laboratories, test capabilities, and other infrastructure consistent with NASA’s missions and mandates. The Administrator should pay particular attention to identifying and removing unneeded or duplicative infrastructure. The Administrator should include in the study a suggested reconfiguration and reinvestment strategy that would conform the needed equipment, facilities, test equipment, and related organizational alignment that would best meet the requirements of missions and priorities authorized and directed by this Act. As part of this strategy, the Administrator should include consideration and application of the findings and recommendations of the National Research Council report,
Capabilities for the Future: An Assessment of NASA Laboratories for Basic Research, prepared in response to section 1003 of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2008 (42 U.S.C. 17812)."

"SEC. 1103. NASA CAPABILITIES STUDY REQUIREMENT. Upon completion of the study required by Section 1102, the Administrator shall establish an independent panel to examine alternative management models for NASA’s workforce, centers, and related facilities in order to improve efficiency and productivity, while nonetheless maintaining core Federal competencies and
keeping appropriately governmental functions internal to NASA. The study shall include a recommended implementation strategy, which shall identify any additional legislative authorities necessary to enable implementation of the recommended strategy, including recommended actions to provide aid and assistance to eligible communities to mitigate adverse impacts resulting from implementation of the proposed strategy. The Administrator shall provide the results of this study to the appropriate committees of Congress within 1 year after the date on which the study is begun."
 

I had somehow glossed over that until now, thank you. That's quite intriguing.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Alpha Control on 07/14/2011 03:40 AM
You answered incorrectly.  You went on about numbers from OMB.  She asked for the technical details of the decision that the NASA Administrator made and one Congress should have a right to know given the whole "transparent government" that this administration claims and that pesky balance-of-powers thing in the Constitution. 
Again, I was answering the question as it related to the Office of Management and Budget. It is not OMB's purpose or place to release technical details of this decision, that's NASA's territory. Even if it were, the Senator has no authority to compel the OMB to do anything on her own; the Congress as a whole in fact has little to say about the OMB beyond confirmation of it's Director.

Well, technically, that's not necessarily true. OMB was created through an  Executive Order by Nixon, but it was an iteration of the Budget Bureau, which was established within the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. The Congress actually has the power to legislate OMB out of existence, or restrict any appropriated funds from being used to support its functions. Obviously, no one is suggesting that, but the point is, the Congress DOES have that power. Sort of like the fact that Congress CREATED NASA, and has the "power" to make it disappear.
That would be political suicide for them, so then they could claim the title of “destroying spaceflight” That I fear would be an empty threat.
Regards
Robert
P.S. Thanks always for all the hard work and information :)

Correct, it likely would be political suicide; but that wasn't my point, which was sort of why I put the quotes around "power": Just to underscore they "could."

Too many folks seem to think that NASA is an "entitlement" and a repository, along with the rest of the federal bureaucracy, of "eternal life." I just like to occasionally throw out a reminder that it "ain't necessarily so." As to how empty a threat it might be, I hope a VERY empty one, myself (since I was only raising it as a hypothetical), but in this day and age I wouldn't bet the farm on anything being a certainty.
Yes, we are living in interesting times! It would be a sad thing for an agency that inspired me on my path in life from the first Mercury flight right up STS-135. I think most would agree that my NASA is not today’s NASA… But same can be said of the nation as a whole regretfully…
Regards
Robert
NASA 2.0 … why not?


Has it ever been suggested that the various directorates be separated out into their own agencies? Just asking, so that the funding priorities are more clearly defined? So perhaps not dissolve NASA but instead shave of the HSFP into it's own agency and put a new head over it under congressional purview.

Actually, it has been discussed at different times over the years, including the not too distant past. Usually it's in the vein of breaking aeronautics research out--removing the first "A" in "NASA"--as a means of "protecting" that Directorate--which is heavily research and technology-oriented--from being "raided" by the generally more costly program management directorates like SOMD, ESMD and SMD. Then it ends up drawing in a discussion of whether it should be sent to FAA or Department of Commerce, or some other area, and pretty soon it gets dropped or put on the back burner for another day. Recently, there have also been suggestions of reworking the structure to put all pure science and research or technology into one organizational bin and all flight/operations programs into another. But you always get the issues of the ten NASA Centers and how to keep them "healthy" with diversified tasking, etc., so they don't ebb and flow with work as priorities shift from one program to another, etc., and it all gets too complicated to provide a clear solution.

But read sections 1102 and 1103 of the 2010 NASA Authorization Act (inserted below) and you can see where some thought has been given to laying the groundwork for considering organizational, managerial, even structural changes. It's not quite a "BRAC"-type effort, but could conceivably lead in that direction. (BRAC="Base Realignment and Closure" process, whereby an independent entity is tasked to recommend consolidations, relocation, closures, etc. of military bases and operations.)

"SEC. 1102. INSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENTS STUDY. Within 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall provide to the appropriate committees of Congress a comprehensive study that, taking into account the long term direction provided by this Act, carefully examines NASA’s structure, organization, and institutional assets and identifies a strategy to evolve toward the most efficient retention, sizing, and distribution of facilities, laboratories, test capabilities, and other infrastructure consistent with NASA’s missions and mandates. The Administrator should pay particular attention to identifying and removing unneeded or duplicative infrastructure. The Administrator should include in the study a suggested reconfiguration and reinvestment strategy that would conform the needed equipment, facilities, test equipment, and related organizational alignment that would best meet the requirements of missions and priorities authorized and directed by this Act. As part of this strategy, the Administrator should include consideration and application of the findings and recommendations of the National Research Council report,
Capabilities for the Future: An Assessment of NASA Laboratories for Basic Research, prepared in response to section 1003 of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2008 (42 U.S.C. 17812)."

"SEC. 1103. NASA CAPABILITIES STUDY REQUIREMENT. Upon completion of the study required by Section 1102, the Administrator shall establish an independent panel to examine alternative management models for NASA’s workforce, centers, and related facilities in order to improve efficiency and productivity, while nonetheless maintaining core Federal competencies and
keeping appropriately governmental functions internal to NASA. The study shall include a recommended implementation strategy, which shall identify any additional legislative authorities necessary to enable implementation of the recommended strategy, including recommended actions to provide aid and assistance to eligible communities to mitigate adverse impacts resulting from implementation of the proposed strategy. The Administrator shall provide the results of this study to the appropriate committees of Congress within 1 year after the date on which the study is begun."
 

That was very illuminating, 51D. Thank you for posting that portion of the 2010 NASA Authorization act. I didn't focus on those sections upon first reading.

For a long time I have thought that NASA's earth science efforts ought to be transferred to NOAA. It will most interesting to see what develops out of these requirements of the authorization act.

David
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: marsavian on 07/14/2011 06:16 AM

Those are good points. But one argument in favour of an HLLV is that it requires a lot less flights to get to Mars. If I remember correctly, the number of EELV flights (with propellant depots) that was required to get to Mars was several hundreds.

Only if you think high flight rates are a bad thing.  High flight rates allow you to achieve economies of scale like mass production/operation or reusability.  High flight rates spark an impetus to serve that market which leverages the power of competition to improve the state of space access.  There's a common belief that we are lacking a deus ex machina like the skylon to spark change.  Build that deus ex machina and it will come.  I posit the opposite is true; provide a large market and they will come to serve it, and evolution over time may very well result in your deus ex machina. 

Nor are such high flight rates beyond the realm of feasibility.  The R-7 has flown 1,774 times, and during the early eighties it launched at a rate of 60 a year.  The flight rate goals of the shuttle were met, but they were met by the Soviets. 

And I like to point out that the cost of the SLS could afford such large scale purchases.  The development cost of the SLS at 12 billion could buy 222 Falcon 9 Flights, and at its yearly operational cost of 2billion, 37 a year every year.  That's probably enough for a hypergolic mission to Mars, even before taking into account the development of the Heavy.  How many Mars missions worth of launch will NASA spend in just getting and keeping the SLS operational?

To go to Mars, NASA must thread a needle.  Perhaps that needle lies through the opportunities and advantages above, and not through the deus ex machina that Mars advocates think is the missing link.

and how exactly did the 'cheap' 'high flight rate' Soviet R-7 BEO exploration and space commercialization plan work out, one Lunar flyby in all that time ? $150m for the next one !

http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/space/rockets/just-one-150-million-seat-remains-on-space-adventures-lunar-flyby

Expendable rockets have a base cost measured in tens of millions that no amount of flight rate will be able to reduce. HLVs will open up the whole Solar System eventually, MLVs can follow in their wake providing backup and new markets. Ultimately this is not a zero sum game between the two once the new frontiers start getting opened up with HLVs laying down the heavy duty tonnage to sustain a BEO presence.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/14/2011 06:31 AM
Maybe we should just come away from that unhealthy Mars focus. Ever since Apollo, Mars has always been dangled before us as the "next big thing". Part of the reason CxP failed was because of Griffin's intention to have a rocket big enough to eventually send humans to Mars (hence the name "Ares").

Since we obviously cannot afford a manned Mars mission now nor in the forseeable future, is it really intelligent to base our decision what kind of launch architecture to get (HLV or multiple EELVs) on a manned Mars architecture? I think this is just asking for trouble.

It's time to lower our sights. Mars can wait.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 07:01 AM
In reviewing the statements by the Committe hearing and reviewing the posts it caused me to look back on NASA's past and how I thiink we got here... Now I'm simply a fan of NASA and manned space flight in General, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.... :)

To me, NASA's (and this Nation's) great achievements have been the result of having a clearly defined goal and taking the steps necessary to achieve that goal.  There would never have been an Apollo 11 without the decision we made in 1961 to put a man on the Moon.  Most would agree that the driving force behind that decision was the Cold War and resultant 'Space Race' between us and the Soviets. Maybe, that's the reason we are where we are now.  Trying to build a launch vehicle/capsule with no clearly defined destination to send it.
 
You could point the finger at the current administration and say the blame lies with them.  The squabbling between Congress and the White House over budgetary items....or the White House canceling the Moon mission planned by the previous administration. 

The previous administration did set out to send man back to the Moon in the aftermath of the Columbia accident, but it was sketched out financially through 2008 with no clear roadmap to the return to the Moon.  Would that have been different if there was an outside force pushing us?  Cold War?...Competition with a rival Nations?  That was pre-'Great Recession'....

Maybe you could say the Nixon Administration suffered from the repeat Super Bowl Champion syndrome.  After the first couple of trips to the Moon, we got used to it and the question, "Is that all?" I think the reason Apollo 18 didn't happen though was purely financial.  Skylab, Apollo-Soyuz, and the Shuttle resulted....all LEO programs.....And what about developing a replacement for the Shuttle in the 90's?...ISS was the focus....

Now that it has been decreed that LEO belongs to Commercial Ventures, maybe NASA needs a mission statement and a defined purpose with clear goals.... and Selling those goals to the public...... "Go to Mars by 2030" ...the steps to achieve that goal Develop the necessary new technologies (space craft..propulsion..etc) to achieve that goal, and test those new technologies in a stepped fashion...a. return to Moon...b. visit Asteroid...c. Visit Mars

Just my two cents...and there's trillions more in that last paragraph. ;)

Hopefully I didn't come across as a Captain Obvious.

Dave S

Yes, we have as much of a goal for NASA as we had in 1961 (when we hadn't even decided on the mission mode or exact launch vehicle, yet): Go to a NEO by 2025, go to Mars by the 2030s, and in the meantime keep doing ISS until at least 2020. You're aware of this, right?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: marsavian on 07/14/2011 07:02 AM
Maybe we should just come away from that unhealthy Mars focus. Ever since Apollo, Mars has always been dangled before us as the "next big thing". Part of the reason CxP failed was because of Griffin's intention to have a rocket big enough to eventually send humans to Mars (hence the name "Ares").

Since we obviously cannot afford a manned Mars mission now nor in the forseeable future, is it really intelligent to base our decision what kind of launch architecture to get (HLV or multiple EELVs) on a manned Mars architecture? I think this is just asking for trouble.

It's time to lower our sights. Mars can wait.

Once ISS is eventually ditched or costs transferred to other entities serious HLV missions can be executed including the Moon and Mars.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 07/14/2011 07:52 AM
Here's a small summary of the Exploration budget. All amounts are in millions of dollars.

                   Authorisation     CR    PBR     HA
                 2011  2012  2013   2011   2012   2012
-------------------------------------------------------
MPCV            $1120 $1400 $1400 $1200.0 $1010.2 $1063
SLS             $1631 $2650 $2640 $1800.0 $1800.0 $1985
Tech. Develop.   $250  $437  $449  $167.4     0.0  $289
Human Research   $155  $165  $175  $103.8  $164.1    $0
COTS             $300    $0    $0  $200.8    $0.0    $0
CCDEV            $312  $500  $500  $269.3  $850.0  $312
Robotic Prec.    $100  $100  $100   $67.0    $0.0    $0
Advanced Explor.   $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $124.4    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Exploration     $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $3948.7 $3649
Explor. Tech. Dev. $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $310.0    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Total           $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $4258.7 $3649

CR = Continuing Resolution
PBR = President's Budget Request
HA = House Appropriations

If we assume an Authorisation budget of $2.65B per year for SLS, then from 2012 to 2016 (a period of five years) plus $1.8B for 2011, the total SLS budget is $15.05B. Direct estimated $12.5B for the development of both J-130 and J-246 so that's plenty of money to get the job done on time. With the President's Budget Request of $1.8B for six years, that's $10.8B, which is enough to do J-130 (Direct estimated $8.9B). So I don't understand how the Administrator can claim that it will be the early 2020s before the first crewed flight of SLS.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: madscientist197 on 07/14/2011 10:32 AM
Sorry, Beb, but you really need to do some more looking into how the US Senate works. In an era where unanimous consent is needed for virtually anything to happen, from confirmation of nominees to adoption of amendments, to passage of key legislation, and where voting majorities are very slender, one Senator of any party can be crucial at some point in time to a President pursuing his own agenda. There really aren't "lame ducks" in the Senate for that very reason. So, while the Administration certainly "Can" simply ignore any single Senator, it would not be in their best interest to do so. In this case I think you can expect some action from the Administration and/or NASA before the end of the week. 

IMHO it's almost the polar opposite of a "lame duck"; the senator has all the power of his/her position, without having to deal with the electoral consequences of his/her actions. In comparison, when a president is a "lame duck" that is because his successor has already been chosen, therefore it is seen as inappropriate for the sitting president to make certain types of decisions without consulting his successor. Very different circumstances.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jim on 07/14/2011 11:32 AM

For a long time I have thought that NASA's earth science efforts ought to be transferred to NOAA. It will most interesting to see what develops out of these requirements of the authorization act.

David

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=21927.0
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/14/2011 01:30 PM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

And here I always thought of it as the secret society of White House political clowns and now we learn it was A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  

Live and learn. I do like your use of the word cabal.

We could compromise and say that 'A small cabal of White House clowns continues to do everything they can to illegally delay implementing the legally mandated SLS and Orion. With any luck the law-breaking clowns will someday give daily performances in the prisons they live in.'
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/14/2011 01:31 PM
Maybe we should just come away from that unhealthy Mars focus. Ever since Apollo, Mars has always been dangled before us as the "next big thing". Part of the reason CxP failed was because of Griffin's intention to have a rocket big enough to eventually send humans to Mars (hence the name "Ares").

Since we obviously cannot afford a manned Mars mission now nor in the forseeable future, is it really intelligent to base our decision what kind of launch architecture to get (HLV or multiple EELVs) on a manned Mars architecture? I think this is just asking for trouble.

It's time to lower our sights. Mars can wait.

Once ISS is eventually ditched or costs transferred to other entities serious HLV missions can be executed including the Moon and Mars.
I see your point… but we should think twice about throwing away an asset like ISS as a National Lab or destroying the tooling or the knowledge base that created it just like we did with Project Apollo hardware. After all we didn’t close Oak Ridge after we built the Atomic Bomb. As a nation we should not have to reinvent at great expense down the road, we need to think in the long term and not as we all have collective ADD.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: EE Scott on 07/14/2011 01:37 PM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

And here I always thought of it as the secret society of White House political clowns and now we learn it was A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  

Live and learn. I do like your use of the word cabal.

We could compromise and say that 'A small cabal of White House clowns continues to do everything they can to illegally delay implementing the legally mandated SLS and Orion. With any luck the law-breaking clowns will someday give daily performances in the prisons they live in.'

What of the "secret society" of the Senate Compromise language that brings us SLS?  We could just as easily say that a bunch of Senate "clowns" got together and created the Senate Launch System and rammed it down our throats during a time of last minute, at-the-buzzer, no time for more debate legislative maneuvers.  The House didn't want it;  the White House didn't want it.  It only got passed and signed due to the fact that everyone's back was against the wall as time ran out on the budget process.  Lots of crap gets through when time runs out and there's only time for an up or down vote. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: marsavian on 07/14/2011 01:39 PM
Maybe we should just come away from that unhealthy Mars focus. Ever since Apollo, Mars has always been dangled before us as the "next big thing". Part of the reason CxP failed was because of Griffin's intention to have a rocket big enough to eventually send humans to Mars (hence the name "Ares").

Since we obviously cannot afford a manned Mars mission now nor in the forseeable future, is it really intelligent to base our decision what kind of launch architecture to get (HLV or multiple EELVs) on a manned Mars architecture? I think this is just asking for trouble.

It's time to lower our sights. Mars can wait.

Once ISS is eventually ditched or costs transferred to other entities serious HLV missions can be executed including the Moon and Mars.
I see your point… but we should think twice about throwing away an asset like ISS as a National Lab or destroying the tooling or the knowledge base that created it just like we did with Project Apollo hardware. After all we didn’t close Oak Ridge after we built the Atomic Bomb. As a nation we should not have to reinvent at great expense down the road, we need to think in the long term and not as we all have collective ADD.
Regards
Robert


The costs of running it can be transferred to another agency or commercial entity or even countries. It should not be part of NASA's fixed costs in perpetuity.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/14/2011 01:43 PM
Maybe we should just come away from that unhealthy Mars focus. Ever since Apollo, Mars has always been dangled before us as the "next big thing". Part of the reason CxP failed was because of Griffin's intention to have a rocket big enough to eventually send humans to Mars (hence the name "Ares").

Since we obviously cannot afford a manned Mars mission now nor in the forseeable future, is it really intelligent to base our decision what kind of launch architecture to get (HLV or multiple EELVs) on a manned Mars architecture? I think this is just asking for trouble.

It's time to lower our sights. Mars can wait.

Once ISS is eventually ditched or costs transferred to other entities serious HLV missions can be executed including the Moon and Mars.
I see your point… but we should think twice about throwing away an asset like ISS as a National Lab or destroying the tooling or the knowledge base that created it just like we did with Project Apollo hardware. After all we didn’t close Oak Ridge after we built the Atomic Bomb. As a nation we should not have to reinvent at great expense down the road, we need to think in the long term and not as we all have collective ADD.
Regards
Robert


The costs of running it can be transferred to another agency or commercial entity or even countries. It should not be part of NASA's fixed costs in perpetuity.
Agreed... I have said that myself.
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: EE Scott on 07/14/2011 01:48 PM
Maybe we should just come away from that unhealthy Mars focus. Ever since Apollo, Mars has always been dangled before us as the "next big thing". Part of the reason CxP failed was because of Griffin's intention to have a rocket big enough to eventually send humans to Mars (hence the name "Ares").

Since we obviously cannot afford a manned Mars mission now nor in the forseeable future, is it really intelligent to base our decision what kind of launch architecture to get (HLV or multiple EELVs) on a manned Mars architecture? I think this is just asking for trouble.

It's time to lower our sights. Mars can wait.

Once ISS is eventually ditched or costs transferred to other entities serious HLV missions can be executed including the Moon and Mars.
I see your point… but we should think twice about throwing away an asset like ISS as a National Lab or destroying the tooling or the knowledge base that created it just like we did with Project Apollo hardware. After all we didn’t close Oak Ridge after we built the Atomic Bomb. As a nation we should not have to reinvent at great expense down the road, we need to think in the long term and not as we all have collective ADD.
Regards
Robert


The costs of running it can be transferred to another agency or commercial entity or even countries. It should not be part of NASA's fixed costs in perpetuity.

That would be sweet.  Looking back on it, NASA got "used" to promote a political goal that did not match up with what NASA would have done without that outside pressure.  And unlike the Apollo-Soyuz mission of the seventies, it's not a one-off cost that we get to move on from.  ISS is working on three decades of budget-sucking existence.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/14/2011 01:57 PM
NASA  got “used” from the beginning as the “soft arm” of the defense department with Moon race to beat the Soviets in the 60’s. Mission accomplished…Project Apollo gone…
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: JohnFornaro on 07/14/2011 03:01 PM
Suboptimal?  Definitely.  So is democracy.  Got a better idea?

Yeah.  I got two better ideas.  First, no baiting.  This discussion, about SLS, is not about whether or not democracy is "suboptimal" in any way, shape, or well, form.  So don't bring that up as if it's some sort of inescapable logic.

Second.  Yes, it is suboptimal, altho there is a somewhat perverse silver lining in your logic:  Congress is so busy with its fascination for BFR's, that other budgetary issues of NASA may be overlooked at this time, with the effect that funding for all parts of NASA could rise a small amount, and that would be better.  But the suboptimality also serves the other perverse apparent purpose of the corporate insiders: endless profit with no required accomplishment.  And that would end up with yet another failed program, this time with maybe even LEO not being an American capability any more.

I don't like these suboptimal implementations of a so-called "democratic" process.  Neither does anyone else who is paying attention to the political narrative being played out on the Hill.

Quote from: LibsOn
.  I posit the opposite is true; provide a large market and they will come to serve it, and evolution over time may very well result in your deus ex machina. 

My thinking is generally along these lines as well.  As the human presence in space gets larger, the economies of a larger rocket will make themselves clear.  This presupposes that our government prime the pump of that economy with a soundly considered manifest of missions of gradually increasing complexity and skill.  For example, that newest shuttle experiment with Dextre and the refilling of comsats with stationkeeping fuel.

and how exactly did the 'cheap' 'high flight rate' Soviet R-7 BEO exploration and space commercialization plan work out, one Lunar flyby in all that time ? $150m for the next one !

The point made was a simple one, that there had been a lot of cheap flights, and that a lot of cheap flights can be a viable strategy for space access, all else being equal.  Whether or not the missions for those flights was well considered or well executed is a different question.

Here today, we have EELV's that are physically capable of launching Orion capsules, but the manrating requirements are being fiddled with so that the EELV's won't be allowed to launch people.  The HLV proponents do not have their system anywhere near ready to launch, and seem more amenable to blocking other systems than getting their system flight ready.  The administrative infighting is a worse enemy than the physics of the problem.

And then of course, "Mars can wait".  There is only one argument that would call for an immediate imperative for Mars first: intelligent life past or present.  This is not being called for.  Even the important issue of primitive life, past or present, can wait.  We can, and should, check that out with rovers and Mars orbiting sats.  There is a strong desire to visit the planet, and that's fine, but the human visitation should wait til we have the necessary skills, and those skills should properly be developed, practiced, and improved upon in the cis-lunar arena.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/14/2011 03:14 PM
He didn't say that he wouldn't provide the information. He simply said that he doesn't want the information printed in the NY times.

That is as much as to say he does not want public debate.  This was the fatal flaw of the original Obama FY11 proposal.  A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  It was a recipe for disaster then, and it still is.  What we need as a nation isn't to be told the answer, but to be engaged in the discussion!

And here I always thought of it as the secret society of White House political clowns and now we learn it was A small cabal of "experts" decided what would work, and didn't bother to consult the broader community.  

Live and learn. I do like your use of the word cabal.

We could compromise and say that 'A small cabal of White House clowns continues to do everything they can to illegally delay implementing the legally mandated SLS and Orion. With any luck the law-breaking clowns will someday give daily performances in the prisons they live in.'

What of the "secret society" of the Senate Compromise language that brings us SLS?  We could just as easily say that a bunch of Senate "clowns" got together and created the Senate Launch System and rammed it down our throats during a time of last minute, at-the-buzzer, no time for more debate legislative maneuvers.  The House didn't want it;  the White House didn't want it.  It only got passed and signed due to the fact that everyone's back was against the wall as time ran out on the budget process.  Lots of crap gets through when time runs out and there's only time for an up or down vote. 

Yep, time certainly does run out. Congress has repeatedly indicated a preference for a Space Shuttle Derived HLV over a long period of time. President Obama's transition team knew about the affordable J-130/J-246 and J-130/J-241 options.

President Obama had well over two years to come up with a politically viable and affordable support system for a fully utilized ISS and also an affordable Lunar exploration plan. He has not done that. He knew CxP had issues and he dithered and dithered. Nowadays he gives us noise about 'commercial' doing everything and NASA maybe going to an undiscovered NEO some distant day in the future. He even laughs about it. He doesn't even believe his own PR NEO nonsense as he is spinning it. His NEO nonsense is a cruel political insider joke that he thinks is funny.

The House appears perfectly willing to reduce the subsidies to 'commercial' and is tired of being ignored by this President and his political cabalists. The safety and maybe even the existence of the International Space Station, a 100,000,000,000 dollar National Laboratory investment by American taxpayers, is a hostage to the secretly devised plans of the unknown White House political cabalists who are jerking around NASA HQ on a day to day basis. NASA makes an SLS decision and it gets 'unmade' by the cabalists. Congress isn't kept informed, despite the laws that they be kept informed, and they are the ones who are supposed to 'pay' for the SLS, not the President.

Lots of folks are getting real uneasy as they see White House folks thinking the law only exists for common citizens and that good cabalists should be able to do whatever they want.  That small cabal of White House clowns are making NASA HQ break the law about the SLS. The clowns apparently don't care because they work for the chief police officer of America. In previous decades other White House clowns have had similar delusions about their immunity to legal prosecution.

The Moon is where NASA is going. The dithering President and his political cabalists cannot quite get their political minds around that fact. Lunar ice, and the rocket propellant that can be made from it, has a lot of folks, including some people in Congress, pretty excited. Even folks that want sustainable missions to NEOs and Mars and Ceres should know that their propellant will come from the Moon.

See:
NASA Missions Uncover the Moon's Buried Treasures   http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/news/releases/2010/10-89AR.html 

:)

Edited.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/14/2011 03:37 PM
My thinking is generally along these lines as well.  As the human presence in space gets larger, the economies of a larger rocket will make themselves clear. 

What comes to mind is how small pickup-sized trucks used to bring goods to a small town once a month or so. But as the town grew it took several trucks and more often. As the town continued to grow and became a city it became larger and larger trucks until the city is now visited several times a day by fleets of 18-wheel tractor trailers.

As the population in space gradually increases there will be a tipping point where larger launch vehicles flying less often will actually cost less than smaller launch vehicles flying more often. Does that mean that the smaller rockets will no longer fly? Of course not. It does mean that they will serve different markets than they did in the beginning because *those* markets will have been taken over by economies of scale.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/14/2011 04:18 PM
Congress has repeatedly indicated a preference for a Space Shuttle Derived HLV over a long period of time. President Obama's transition team knew about the affordable J-130/J-246 and J-130/J-241 options.

Yes they did. We presented the entire architecture - in excruciating detail – to them in January of 2009 at NASA HQ in DC.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 04:32 PM
Here's a small summary of the Exploration budget. All amounts are in millions of dollars.

                   Authorisation     CR    PBR     HA
                 2011  2012  2013   2011   2012   2012
-------------------------------------------------------
MPCV            $1120 $1400 $1400 $1200.0 $1010.2 $1063
SLS             $1631 $2650 $2640 $1800.0 $1800.0 $1985
Tech. Develop.   $250  $437  $449  $167.4     0.0  $289
Human Research   $155  $165  $175  $103.8  $164.1    $0
COTS             $300    $0    $0  $200.8    $0.0    $0
CCDEV            $312  $500  $500  $269.3  $850.0  $312
Robotic Prec.    $100  $100  $100   $67.0    $0.0    $0
Advanced Explor.   $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $124.4    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Exploration     $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $3948.7 $3649
Explor. Tech. Dev. $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $310.0    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Total           $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $4258.7 $3649

CR = Continuing Resolution
PBR = President's Budget Request
HA = House Appropriations
...
Interesting. Obama proposed hundreds of millions more for NASA exploration than the House. Because he hates exploration and Congress loves exploration.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/14/2011 05:01 PM
Here's a small summary of the Exploration budget. All amounts are in millions of dollars.

                   Authorisation     CR    PBR     HA
                 2011  2012  2013   2011   2012   2012
-------------------------------------------------------
MPCV            $1120 $1400 $1400 $1200.0 $1010.2 $1063
SLS             $1631 $2650 $2640 $1800.0 $1800.0 $1985
Tech. Develop.   $250  $437  $449  $167.4     0.0  $289
Human Research   $155  $165  $175  $103.8  $164.1    $0
COTS             $300    $0    $0  $200.8    $0.0    $0
CCDEV            $312  $500  $500  $269.3  $850.0  $312
Robotic Prec.    $100  $100  $100   $67.0    $0.0    $0
Advanced Explor.   $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $124.4    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Exploration     $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $3948.7 $3649
Explor. Tech. Dev. $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $310.0    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Total           $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $4258.7 $3649

CR = Continuing Resolution
PBR = President's Budget Request
HA = House Appropriations
...
Interesting. Obama proposed hundreds of millions more for NASA exploration. Because he hates exploration.


Proposed millions more not billions, first of all, and second of all proposed no plan by which to effectively and QUICKLY, AS IN MY LIFETIME, use those dollars


I have demonstrated point by point why I hold the view that this man does not like NASA and would prefer if it was gone, and why I hold the view that his attitude is comparable to a small child when he doesn't get what he wants, he makes the biggest fuss about it possible or mucks up the plan of those who DID get what they want.

Case and point: The president stormed out of debt meetings in a rage yesterday because he wants the other side to captiulate and either raise taxes or delay any spending cuts until after he is out of office. Since they wouldn't do it, he stormed out of the meeting.

And yes, he did "storm" out not just walk out, of a critical meeting that may well hold our country's fate at stake.


@Robot, my views are not necessarily held by anyone else on this forum and most of the SLS/DIRECT supporters don'd hold them either, so please stop the tongue in cheek arm-waving your not convincing anyone of anything and your assuming more people hold this view than actually do. 
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 05:03 PM
Here's a small summary of the Exploration budget. All amounts are in millions of dollars.

                   Authorisation     CR    PBR     HA
                 2011  2012  2013   2011   2012   2012
-------------------------------------------------------
MPCV            $1120 $1400 $1400 $1200.0 $1010.2 $1063
SLS             $1631 $2650 $2640 $1800.0 $1800.0 $1985
Tech. Develop.   $250  $437  $449  $167.4     0.0  $289
Human Research   $155  $165  $175  $103.8  $164.1    $0
COTS             $300    $0    $0  $200.8    $0.0    $0
CCDEV            $312  $500  $500  $269.3  $850.0  $312
Robotic Prec.    $100  $100  $100   $67.0    $0.0    $0
Advanced Explor.   $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $124.4    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Exploration     $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $3948.7 $3649
Explor. Tech. Dev. $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $310.0    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Total           $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $4258.7 $3649

CR = Continuing Resolution
PBR = President's Budget Request
HA = House Appropriations
...
Interesting. Obama proposed hundreds of millions more for NASA exploration. Because he hates exploration.


Proposed millions more not billions, first of all, and second of all proposed no plan by which to effectively and QUICKLY, AS IN MY LIFETIME, use those dollars
...
Yes, he has. NEO by 2025, Mars by the 2030s, ISS until at least 2020.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/14/2011 05:06 PM
Congress has repeatedly indicated a preference for a Space Shuttle Derived HLV over a long period of time. President Obama's transition team knew about the affordable J-130/J-246 and J-130/J-241 options.

Yes they did. We presented the entire architecture - in excruciating detail – to them in January of 2009 at NASA HQ in DC.


And they totally ignored you. Not suprising, they ignored other people and other ideas as well.


The man's "transition team" was nothing more than a dog and pony media show. He had all those experts from all those fields on all those issues tell him point by point what needed to be done and where and for the most part he ignored all of them and did what HE personally wanted instead, that's how we got where we are today.


Spaceflight is no different, he had literally a damn near perfect solution dropped in his lap that would have REALLY done some exploration in the next 10 years or even the next 5, but instead of choosing that he just did away with everything.


That's why I can prove he doesn't care about spaceflight, he had numerous options including DIRECT and commercial sector plans dropped in his lap and he chose none of them. BTW if your thinking fy 2011 was a commercial plan, your wrong, he had advice from ULA/Spacex/ others on how to do a robust commercial exploration plan and that is *not* what presented.



Case and point: He doesn't care because his plan had no goals, no timeline, and no budgetary guidelines. Just maybe's, pretty speeches, and smokescreens.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/14/2011 05:09 PM
Here's a small summary of the Exploration budget. All amounts are in millions of dollars.

                   Authorisation     CR    PBR     HA
                 2011  2012  2013   2011   2012   2012
-------------------------------------------------------
MPCV            $1120 $1400 $1400 $1200.0 $1010.2 $1063
SLS             $1631 $2650 $2640 $1800.0 $1800.0 $1985
Tech. Develop.   $250  $437  $449  $167.4     0.0  $289
Human Research   $155  $165  $175  $103.8  $164.1    $0
COTS             $300    $0    $0  $200.8    $0.0    $0
CCDEV            $312  $500  $500  $269.3  $850.0  $312
Robotic Prec.    $100  $100  $100   $67.0    $0.0    $0
Advanced Explor.   $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $124.4    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Exploration     $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $3948.7 $3649
Explor. Tech. Dev. $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $310.0    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Total           $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $4258.7 $3649

CR = Continuing Resolution
PBR = President's Budget Request
HA = House Appropriations
...
Interesting. Obama proposed hundreds of millions more for NASA exploration. Because he hates exploration.


Proposed millions more not billions, first of all, and second of all proposed no plan by which to effectively and QUICKLY, AS IN MY LIFETIME, use those dollars
...
Yes, he has. NEO by 2025, Mars by the 2030s, ISS until at least 2020.

Wrong, no time table was offered as how to make those happen (besides ISS extension), and no near term goals were mentioned eithier. Also those dates were termed *loose* dates and consequentely have sinced changed, quite considerably I might add, out to the right. Like 2040-2050 to the right. Oh and btw 2025-2030 is not acceptable, sorry but that's the same timeline the finished product of CXP had (which it STILL would not have met anyway).



No plan, no timeline, no goals, no nothing.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 05:09 PM
...
Case and point: He doesn't care because his plan had no goals, no timeline, and no budgetary guidelines. Just maybe's, pretty speeches, and smokescreens.
Demonstrably false.

He's said NEO by 2025, Mars by 2030s, and ISS until at least 2020. And he's funded it better than the House Republicans, which you seem eager to have take over the White House.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 05:12 PM
...
Interesting. Obama proposed hundreds of millions more for NASA exploration. Because he hates exploration.


Proposed millions more not billions, first of all, and second of all proposed no plan by which to effectively and QUICKLY, AS IN MY LIFETIME, use those dollars
...
Yes, he has. NEO by 2025, Mars by the 2030s, ISS until at least 2020.

Wrong, no time table was offered as how to make those happen (besides ISS extension), and no near term goals were mentioned eithier. Also those dates were termed *loose* dates and consequentely have sinced changed, quite considerably I might add, out to the right. Like 2040-2050 to the right. Oh and btw 2025-2030 is not acceptable, sorry but that's the same timeline the finished product of CXP had (which it STILL would not have met anyway).



No plan, no timeline, no goals, no nothing.
You keep saying those words, because they don't mean what you think they mean.

And I suppose JFK outlined in detail Mercury, Gemini, and the mission mode of Apollo in 1961 along with what "mare" to visit?

I'm sorry, but NO president has done what you've suggested Obama has to do.

Obama has laid out ambitious yet realistic goals, and space cadets complain that he hasn't said we should go to Alpha Centauri within 5 years and half the budget.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/14/2011 05:15 PM
...
Case and point: He doesn't care because his plan had no goals, no timeline, and no budgetary guidelines. Just maybe's, pretty speeches, and smokescreens.
Demonstrably false.

He's said NEO by 2025, Mars by 2030s, and ISS until at least 2020. And he's funded it better than the House Republicans, which you seem eager to have take over the White House.


Wrong your the one who is demonstrably false, he SAID that but then no actual plan was developed to show how that was going to happen and where to start now, beyond ofc dismantling the current infrastructure.


Case and point again: For example he didn't say, we will have an immediate program begin to determine who gets to build the next BEO vehicle, we will have an immediate program to determine who gets to build the next propulsions system, and we we all have an immediate program to determine who's exploration system idea (i.e. DIRECT vs. ULA vs SPACEX plans) gets used and we will start those programs RIGHT NOW, which is exactly what should have happened if he gave a rats arse about it.


Also if you actually look at the numbers you are posting there are only two line items that have a higher PBR request than that of congress, in many cases the PBR is actually 0 for some of the so called advanced R&D programs he promised AND for COTS and some other commercial elements as well, where as the congressional request still provides some funding to these things.


How the heck can you say republicans want less when, despite being higher overall, the PBR cuts several critical line items needed for exploration, commercial OR otherwise????


Granted the current House proposal is not much better but the 2012 PBR is actually worse


Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 05:19 PM
...
Granted the current House proposal is not much better but the 2012 PBR is actually worse.
No, it isn't worse. The House version is worse, it proposes less for NASA as a whole (a cut of ~$2 billion) and less for exploration in particular.

The money may move around, with different names (COTS money isn't needed, that's part of ISS/CRS now), but fundamentally, Obama proposed MORE money for NASA and MORE money for exploration than the House Republicans.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rabidpanda on 07/14/2011 05:21 PM
No plan, no timeline, no goals, no nothing.

Obama said NEO by 2025, Mars by 2030s.  That is a GOAL.  It is now NASA's job to develop a plan and timeline of how to meet that goal.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/14/2011 05:23 PM
...
Interesting. Obama proposed hundreds of millions more for NASA exploration. Because he hates exploration.


Proposed millions more not billions, first of all, and second of all proposed no plan by which to effectively and QUICKLY, AS IN MY LIFETIME, use those dollars
...
Yes, he has. NEO by 2025, Mars by the 2030s, ISS until at least 2020.

Wrong, no time table was offered as how to make those happen (besides ISS extension), and no near term goals were mentioned eithier. Also those dates were termed *loose* dates and consequentely have sinced changed, quite considerably I might add, out to the right. Like 2040-2050 to the right. Oh and btw 2025-2030 is not acceptable, sorry but that's the same timeline the finished product of CXP had (which it STILL would not have met anyway).



No plan, no timeline, no goals, no nothing.
You keep saying those words, because they don't mean what you think they mean.

And I suppose JFK outlined in detail Mercury, Gemini, and the mission mode of Apollo in 1961 along with what "mare" to visit?

I'm sorry, but NO president has done what you've suggested Obama has to do.

Obama has laid out ambitious yet realistic goals, and space cadets complain that he hasn't said we should go to Alpha Centauri within 5 years and half the budget.


Stop sidetracking he has laid out no such goals just lofty timelines which have since been removed from discussion entirely. Not only was there never a plan presented as to how to meet those dates, but in addition they totally fell off the radar in fairly short order, now we have bolden saying no manned flight even until 2020 thus no backup to a commercial provider failing and no added/backup capability to ISS.


He didn't lay out any sort of guideline like JFK, JFK  said IN THE NEXT TEN YEARS, and when he actually went to the drawing board and wrote his plan he SPECIFIED interim goals and NASA did the rest.


Obama specified a timeline THIRTY OR MORE YEARS away (do you have any idea how many election cycles that is??) and specified no details to get there and instead of directing NASA to develop a plan or interim goals, essentially directed them to sit down shutup and do NOTHING, which is why there have been so many bloody hearings.


How in the world can you think this man has a bold plan when his 2012 request actually zeros out some things needed for exploration and when he is using delaying tactics to slow down the development of a plan to make his lofty goals actually happen ?? ?

We will never agree on this, the only thing we agree on is that the house request is no better. I stand by my point if Obama cared he would be helping NASA and Congress to develop near term programs and near term goals with set timeline and milestones, and if commercial is involved immediate bidding competitions, instead of delaying and mucking up thing whilst simply talking about how great this country used to be and how anything useful cannot take place until 20 or 30 years from now rather than during his presidency.


You realize that the reason the debt talks have gone on this long is because the president has been unwilling to produce a counter proposal to republican plans? That's why they cannot compromise because he won't even develop a counter plan to save his own country from default



Heck I will even go a step further and say that the man does not care about the American people just his own personal agenda JUST LIKE BUSH  Otherwise he would have compromised weeks ago or actually TRIED to fix the space program instead of kicking the can down the road and leaving the mess to Congress to sort out. That's also the reason why your seeing cuts in the House budget.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Bill White on 07/14/2011 05:25 PM
No plan, no timeline, no goals, no nothing.

Obama said NEO by 2025, Mars by 2030s.  That is a GOAL.  It is now NASA's job to develop a plan and timeline of how to meet that goal.

George W. Bush said the Moon by 2020 and that goal became "inoperative" when a new President was elected. I predict the same fate for the long term goals chosen by Obama.

Unless Congress sets the goals, in a bi-partisan fashion, the goals will consistently shift with the political winds.

This is partly why I believe space exploration NEEDS revenue streams that do not come from the US taxpayers.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 05:30 PM
Do you think using bold makes your statements ring truer?

I get it. You don't like Obama. I didn't vote for him, but I'm able to see that he seems to care more about NASA and exploration than the all-the-rage House Republicans who need to put their money where their mouth is when it comes to supporting NASA.

He has presented more of a plan than JFK did.

Guess what? CxP was a failure, as you saw yourself. Its goals couldn't have been met with how things were going.

Obama said 2025 for NEO, 2030s for Mars, and 2020+ for ISS, and put more money into NASA and Exploration (with perhaps money shifted around, different names put on the same money and purpose) than the House. No amount of arguing or use-of-bold can change that. Actions (i.e. actually proposing a budget with numbers) speak louder than words, no matter how shrill.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/14/2011 05:37 PM
Calm down all of you. Using Bold is internet code for armwaving ;)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/14/2011 05:39 PM
Heck I will even go a step further and say that the man does not care about the American people just his own personal agenda JUST LIKE BUSH  Otherwise he would have compromised weeks ago or actually TRIED to fix the space program instead of kicking the can down the road and leaving the mess to Congress to sort out. That's also the reason why your seeing cuts in the House budget.

So, if Obama (D) does not care about America and Bush (R) didn't, then the chance is high that the next president (D or R) won't either. And not care a fig about Nasa. So what are you going to do besides coming here and venting your anger? Whom are you going to vote for? Maybe you should set up your own independent pro-spaceflight candidate? Or maybe emigrate?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rabidpanda on 07/14/2011 05:41 PM
No plan, no timeline, no goals, no nothing.

Obama said NEO by 2025, Mars by 2030s.  That is a GOAL.  It is now NASA's job to develop a plan and timeline of how to meet that goal.

George W. Bush said the Moon by 2020 and that goal became "inoperative" when a new President was elected. I predict the same fate for the long term goals chosen by Obama.

Unless Congress sets the goals, in a bi-partisan fashion, the goals will consistently shift with the political winds.

This is partly why I believe space exploration NEEDS revenue streams that do not come from the US taxpayers.

I pretty much agree with you, I was just pointing out that FinalFrontier's statement that Obama proposed no goals is false.

IMHO this is one of the problems with taking the 'apollo' approach to space exploration.  That is, taking ten years to build a big rocket and it's payloads before starting a mission.  Over the time it takes to design and build all that hardware the chances of it being cancelled grow drastically.  This is what happened to Constellation. 

IMHO the better way is an 'ISS' approach to exploration.  That is, building a sustainable infrastructure in space using existing capability that is hard to cancel.  Something like an EML1 'Gateway' space station would be a good start.  If you can build it with existing rockets then you could probably have a fully functioning BEO station in the course of a single presidency.  Something like that is a lot harder to cancel than hardware that hasn't even left the ground yet.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Chris Bergin on 07/14/2011 05:42 PM
Right, everyone put a sock in it. This is not about Presidents (as much as I know how it got on to that). Get it back on the specifics of NASA/Space Program.

Stupid amount of armwaving from several posters on here. Waste of bandwidth.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jongoff on 07/14/2011 05:43 PM
No plan, no timeline, no goals, no nothing.

Obama said NEO by 2025, Mars by 2030s.  That is a GOAL.  It is now NASA's job to develop a plan and timeline of how to meet that goal.

George W. Bush said the Moon by 2020 and that goal became "inoperative" when a new President was elected. I predict the same fate for the long term goals chosen by Obama.

Unless Congress sets the goals, in a bi-partisan fashion, the goals will consistently shift with the political winds.

I think another strategy would be to set near-term attainable objectives.  As in ones that can be completed within a single president's time in office.  That said, having a coherent, bipartisan agreement on what the ultimate goals of NASA HSF should be, and what the overarching strategy to meet those goals is also important.

Quote
This is partly why I believe space exploration NEEDS revenue streams that do not come from the US taxpayers.

Oh, I agree, and in fact that's part of what has to be the long-term strategy.  Realistically though, to get there we probably need a lot of NASA cooperation in the nearterm.  Wishing doesn't make something so.

~Jon
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/14/2011 05:45 PM
Right thats fine then. Last thing I am going to say: I do not think the guy cares and I will never agree with those who do.

As to what I am going to do for the next election, I have no idea, most of America is in the same position because the fact of the matter is we DO need someone who cares more about us and the future then his own career or his persona ideology. How we get a candidate like that is beyond me. But since the platforms for most of the 2012 candidates are not yet well known I say we wait and see what choices we are presented with.


And hopefully those who went on the record as not supporting NASA funding will change their stance when the amount of lost votes involved becomes clear.



As to the immediate problem, regardless of the ongoing fight between NASA management and Congress over this report, the immediate issue is that the House request cuts the budget for NASA across the board, and that's a very bad thing especially because of where the agency stands right now. If anything it should be going up.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Danderman on 07/14/2011 05:45 PM
One point that is valid: without a constitutional amendment, any long term space goals will be canceled by the next president.

So, given the above, why should people here really care about any big long term space goal announced (or not announced) by a president? What really matters, if you are  a fan of exploration, is what capabilities are developed during the administration of a president. If capabilities are developed, then a future president could make a short term announcement for exploration (ie, "we will return to the Moon in 3 years"), based on capabilities on hand.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/14/2011 06:21 PM
Suboptimal?  Definitely.  So is democracy.  Got a better idea?

Yeah.  I got two better ideas.  First, no baiting.  This discussion, about SLS, is not about whether or not democracy is "suboptimal" in any way, shape, or well, form.  So don't bring that up as if it's some sort of inescapable logic.

My point there is that it is naive to think that NASA could do whatever it wanted without considering the opinions of the people who appropriate the funds.  The necessity of this consideration moves the operational optimum away from the theoretical optimum.  Democracy is a good analogy; it is very inefficient compared to other forms of government, but a properly-designed one has checks and balances that eliminate or greatly reduce catastrophic flaws in the more 'efficient' systems.  And since the working of the U.S. political system is what is resulting in this mess re: SLS and NASA's budget, it is perhaps more than simply an analogy...

Quote
Second.  Yes, it is suboptimal, altho there is a somewhat perverse silver lining in your logic:  Congress is so busy with its fascination for BFR's, that other budgetary issues of NASA may be overlooked at this time, with the effect that funding for all parts of NASA could rise a small amount, and that would be better.  But the suboptimality also serves the other perverse apparent purpose of the corporate insiders: endless profit with no required accomplishment.  And that would end up with yet another failed program, this time with maybe even LEO not being an American capability any more.

I don't like these suboptimal implementations of a so-called "democratic" process.  Neither does anyone else who is paying attention to the political narrative being played out on the Hill.

I'm actually in favour of SLS, and I think it would be a good capability to develop and have.  I think that it can be handled properly, and that there are signs that it will be, if it survives the political maneuvering.

What I was trying to convey was that even if you don't believe this, it doesn't necessarily make sense to try to force Congress to abandon it (which is what certain SLS opponents are praising the Administration for), because you won't get to keep the money anyway.

If you could make Congress want to do things differently, well, that's another story...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Robotbeat on 07/14/2011 06:22 PM
...
If you could make Congress want to do things differently, well, that's another story...
That's what I think is the best approach, FWIW.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: MP99 on 07/14/2011 06:31 PM
I think another strategy would be to set near-term attainable objectives.  As in ones that can be completed within a single president's time in office.

Ironically, PL 111-267 requires SLS & MPCV to be pretty much ready by the end of the next presidential term (2016). If Obama doesn't win a 2nd term, hopefully the next prez will either support it, or cancel it before too much money has been spent.

cheers, Martin
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: ArbitraryConstant on 07/14/2011 06:47 PM
If I'm right about the cuts elsewhere being even worse without SLS running interference, then the HLV is a positive benefit to everything else NASA does, even if it's never used.
It was my hope that it would have that impact, but I am hard pressed to sustain that hope now. Additionally though, it only really has that impact for as long as it's possible to maintain the pretense it will be available on something resembling schedule and budget. After that it gets canceled just like CxP did.

That might at least serve some long term purpose if it distracts congress long enough for CCDev to become fait accompli, but the proposed budget slashes CCDev along with everything else.

All I'm saying is that it constitutes a proposed payload that's too large for anything but SLS.
Proposed.

But BA has not, as far as I am aware, entered into any sort of agreement with NASA or received any funds to make a BA-2100 available for SLS on a 2016-17 timetable. Or even 2020+.

(You also ignored the proposed Orion+DHCUS cislunar stack, judging by the comment about EELVs being sufficient...)
The what?

I'm not aware of any such vehicle being funded for completion when SLS is ready.

There's lots of proposed payloads, such as the ones you've suggested, or very large monolithic mirrors, and so on. I didn't intend to deny people have had ideas that would benefit.

The problem is that nobody's actually signing contracts and getting funded to have something ready to fly on SLS. If they're not getting funded now, they're not going to be ready. It's just not possible.

In spite of many clever ideas people have had, something actually has to get funded and built for HLV to be of use, and that's not happening.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/14/2011 06:55 PM
Additionally though, it only really has that impact for as long as it's possible to maintain the pretense it will be available on something resembling schedule and budget. After that it gets canceled just like CxP did.

SLS is not Ares.  The "pretense" here is that it is not feasible within the budget and timeline given in the Authorization Act.

Please note that the contractors appear to be fairly gung-ho for this.  ATK is reportedly going for reasonably-priced FFP contracts, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne are supposedly quietly reverting J-2X to its more efficient pre-Ares I form, and Boeing has hired people back on its own dime to work on a tank manufacturing demo.  It's not yet at the level of Apollo, where IIRC about a third of the total man-hours on the project were voluntary unpaid overtime (or was that a specific sub-project?), but it's looking promising.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/14/2011 07:00 PM
Here's a small summary of the Exploration budget. All amounts are in millions of dollars.

                   Authorisation     CR    PBR     HA
                 2011  2012  2013   2011   2012   2012
-------------------------------------------------------
MPCV            $1120 $1400 $1400 $1200.0 $1010.2 $1063
SLS             $1631 $2650 $2640 $1800.0 $1800.0 $1985
Tech. Develop.   $250  $437  $449  $167.4     0.0  $289
Human Research   $155  $165  $175  $103.8  $164.1    $0
COTS             $300    $0    $0  $200.8    $0.0    $0
CCDEV            $312  $500  $500  $269.3  $850.0  $312
Robotic Prec.    $100  $100  $100   $67.0    $0.0    $0
Advanced Explor.   $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $124.4    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Exploration     $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $3948.7 $3649
Explor. Tech. Dev. $0    $0    $0    $0.0  $310.0    $0
-------------------------------------------------------
Total           $3868 $5252 $5264 $3808.3 $4258.7 $3649

CR = Continuing Resolution
PBR = President's Budget Request
HA = House Appropriations
...
Interesting. Obama proposed hundreds of millions more for NASA exploration. Because he hates exploration.


Proposed millions more not billions, first of all, and second of all proposed no plan by which to effectively and QUICKLY, AS IN MY LIFETIME, use those dollars
...
Yes, he has. NEO by 2025, Mars by the 2030s, ISS until at least 2020.

I beg to differ with you regarding ISS to 2020.  It's more of talk then a real plan.  Most of the real plan ends at 2016 and that isn't even covered fully.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Rocket Science on 07/14/2011 08:14 PM
All I wish to say with all that has been written in previous posts is a quote from Neil Armstrong in front of the committee last year. “The President has been ill advised”… He is not a space expert and if any blame should be placed, it is on those who “advised” him. There are some on this site who personally know who those people are and what if any, is their agenda. That should be the “real focus”… If the nation bleeds is does so equally whether Democrat or Republican ….Don’t be distracted…
Regards
Robert
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: clongton on 07/14/2011 08:46 PM
I think another strategy would be to set near-term attainable objectives.  As in ones that can be completed within a single president's time in office.  That said, having a coherent, bipartisan agreement on what the ultimate goals of NASA HSF should be, and what the overarching strategy to meet those goals is also important.

~Jon

Excellent advise. Here's my first blush.

Short Term Goals
•   Establish consistent service of crew and cargo to the ISS on commercially procured spacecraft and launch vehicles. Bring all commercially procured vehicles to a level of maturity that will instill confidence in their use by non-government industrial and commercial concerns.
•   Knowing ISS has a limited lifespan remaining, create plans for several LEO replacements, serving different functions, based on the Bigelow model, to serve national, international and commercial enterprises
•   Create LEO infrastructure designed specifically to enable effective BEO missions to cis-lunar space, including but not limited to propellant depots for various types of propellant, outfitting and departure platforms, orbiting consumable goods warehouses and orbiting stations designed specifically to service and support BEO missions in cis-lunar space (above bullet)
•   In addition to above create a LEO repair and servicing station for satellites and telescopes that are stationed at various locations; LEO, HEO; GEO Synchronous, Earth-Sun Lagrange points, etc. Design all such hugely expensive spacecraft to be capable of flying themselves to and from this servicing station using SEP. No more Shuttle-Hubble type servicing missions. The satellite comes home by itself to be fueled, repaired or upgraded.
•   Leverage the emerging suborbital industry to provide point to point human transportation across the globe as part of the global transportation system
•   Provide incentives for commercial companies to establish orbiting facilities for conducting business that is benefited by the micro gravity environment. These are to be based on the Bigelow model and are to be serviced by commercial spacecraft

Mid Term Goals
•   Establish lunar surface constant communication capability with satellites located at EML-1 and 2
•   Establish lunar robotic exploration capabilities, which are tele-operated from man-tended stations located at EML-1 and 2
•   Explore the most promising lunar locations based on most easily obtainable resources that would support colony ISRU
•   Establish man-tended lunar propellant ISRU stations.
•   Establish several locations that can serve as the beginning for future colonization efforts
•   Lay the foundations for the future exploration of Mars by sending increasingly complex probes to Phobos with the intent of determining its suitability as an Earth-Mars way station.
•   Lay plans to send a constellation of probes and orbiters to Mercury, Venus and Mars, for the purpose of vastly increasing our knowledge base of the inner planets.
•   Lay plans to replace the JWST with another system of similar capability to be located at a ESL location.
•   Plan for a man tended science on the lunar far side

Long Term Goals
•   Explore and colonize the Moon with permanent settlers
•   Explore Mars by way of a Phobos Man-Tended base using the sortie method
•   Identify potential locations for future colonization

I don't really know how to define the commercial / government mix in all of that but it will obviously exist. Government will always be involved in some fashon. The trick is going to be to keep government from messing up what the rest of us want to do in space and enable them to do what only it can do with its funding base - constantly push the envelope to the bleeding edge and then push it some more, for the sole purpose of making it possible for the rest of us to follow where they have gone and settle in to do business.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/14/2011 08:47 PM
Watch the video/Transcripts of the Committee
 
http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/ASASpac (http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/ASASpac)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: simonbp on 07/14/2011 09:00 PM
SLS is not Ares.

That was the intention.

In execution, however, they've just given the same contracts to the same contractors with the same NASA "oversight"/fingers-in-the-pudding as for Ares. Indeed, the only actual difference so far is the shape of vehicle (and even then, 130-tonne SLS is just the SSME version of Ares V).

Meanwhile, we have the rather ridiculous situation that a private company (SpaceX) is developing an exploration-class launch vehicle on their own dime, completely independent of NASA (and AFAIK DoD) requirements. Plus, it will be available at least a couple (if not four) years before the first test flight of SLS.

IMHO, the most likely outcome is that SLS will drag on for a few years before being canceled, like Ares, NLS, and Shuttle-C before it. NASA will then suddenly become really interested in Falcon Heavy, right after the design is fixed and can't be changed to meet NASA's requirements...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: 93143 on 07/14/2011 09:17 PM
In execution, however, they've just given the same contracts to the same contractors with the same NASA "oversight"/fingers-in-the-pudding as for Ares.

You seem awfully sure of the specifics of the arrangement.  Do you have data I haven't seen?  (I'm not on L2.)

I was under the impression that this sort of thing was part of what they were looking at with "affordability".

Also, as I noted above, the behaviour of the contractors seems different this time.  ATK, for instance, is going along with the "affordability" idea, which should have surprised a lot of SD opponents, and did surprise even some of the proponents...

Quote
Indeed, the only actual difference so far is the shape of vehicle (and even then, 130-tonne SLS is just the SSME version of Ares V).

Which isn't nearly as bad an idea now that RSRMV and J-2X are almost finished.  Besides, unless you're privy to the final decision data, you don't know exactly how they intend to meet the 130-ton requirement.  If you go with either short tons of payload or metric tonnes of IMLEO (either of which is consistent with the wording of the law, and the latter of which is consistent with how Ares V's performance was always quoted), you don't need Ares V Classic.  If you allow for liquid booster upgrades, you don't even need J-241H, because AJAX will do 130 tonnes payload without an upper stage...

As I said, it's not Ares.  Specifically, it's not what Ares became.  We were dealing with both Jackhammer I and Godzilla VII, neither one truly "Shuttle-derived", due to Griffin's mismanagement; that's over now.  Even Ares V Classic is not all that bad a design on its own.

Quote
Meanwhile, we have the rather ridiculous situation that a private company (SpaceX) is developing an exploration-class launch vehicle on their own dime, completely independent of NASA (and AFAIK DoD) requirements. Plus, it will be available at least a couple (if not four) years before the first test flight of SLS.

Optimistic timeline.  Usually a bad idea with SpaceX.

Also, Falcon Heavy isn't exploration-class.  It doesn't even have a cryo upper stage...
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: FinalFrontier on 07/14/2011 10:04 PM
I think another strategy would be to set near-term attainable objectives.  As in ones that can be completed within a single president's time in office.  That said, having a coherent, bipartisan agreement on what the ultimate goals of NASA HSF should be, and what the overarching strategy to meet those goals is also important.

~Jon

Excellent advise. Here's my first blush.

Short Term Goals
•   Establish consistent service of crew and cargo to the ISS on commercially procured spacecraft and launch vehicles. Bring all commercially procured vehicles to a level of maturity that will instill confidence in their use by non-government industrial and commercial concerns.
•   Knowing ISS has a limited lifespan remaining, create plans for several LEO replacements, serving different functions, based on the Bigelow model, to serve national, international and commercial enterprises
•   Create LEO infrastructure designed specifically to enable effective BEO missions to cis-lunar space, including but not limited to propellant depots for various types of propellant and orbiting stations designed specifically to assemble, service and support BEO missions in cis-lunar space (above bullet)
•   Leverage the emerging suborbital industry to provide point to point human transportation across the globe as part of the global transportation system
•   Provide incentives for commercial companies to establish orbiting facilities for conducting business that is benefited by the micro gravity environment. These are to be based on the Bigelow model and are to be serviced by commercial spacecraft

Mid Term Goals
•   Establish lunar surface constant communication capability with satellites located at EML-1 and 2
•   Establish lunar robotic exploration capabilities, which are tele-operated from man-tended stations located at EML-1 and 2
•   Explore the most promising lunar locations based on most easily obtainable resources that would support colony ISRU
•   Establish man-tended lunar propellant ISRU stations.
•   Establish several locations that can serve as the beginning for future colonization efforts
•   Lay the foundations for the future exploration of Mars by sending increasingly complex probes to Phobos with the intent of determining its suitability as an Earth-Mars way station.
•   Lay plans to send a constellation of probes and orbiters to Mercury, Venus and Mars, for the purpose of vastly increasing our knowledge base of the inner planets.
•   Lay plans to replace the JWST with another system of similar capability to be located at a ESL location.
•   Plan for a man tended science on the lunar far side

Long Term Goals
•   Explore and colonize the Moon with permanent settlers
•   Explore Mars by way of a Phobos Man-Tended base using the sortie method
•   Identify potential locations for future colonization

I don't really know how to define the commercial / government mix in all of that but it will obviously exist. Government will always be involved in some fashon. The trick is going to be to keep government from messing up what the rest of us want to do in space and enable them to do what only it can do with its funding base - constantly push the envelope to the bleeding edge and then push it some more, for the sole purpose of making it possible for the rest of us to follow where they have gone and settle in to do business.


I wish you were in the WH. I really do. Maybe the next president takes notice of this thread, who knows  8)
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Prober on 07/14/2011 10:54 PM
I started playing around with the C-Span search system.
 
 
Found the Senate hearing for FY 2012 and watched a bit of it. 
 
Watching this a few months later alot falls into place.   First and formost, it was clear to me that pure out and out lies have been made to Congress between the April 11th and the House Committee hearing.
 
1) Nothing was said to the Senate to correct them on the timeline of flight in 2016, that has now become 2017.    So in 4 months time we slipped another year.
 
2) Sen Mikulski who has come out as a major supporter of the JWST, warned Bolden on April 11 funding @ 500 million per year for the future would not happen.  She was told end of the month the "baseline assessment" would info would be given the committe. 
 
Maybe 51D can tell us if the material was received by the Senate.
 
(time 21:40) don't wish to say this next point as a for sure but I believe I'm right on it.  3) In his opening statement Bolden kicked the issue of the JWST down the road until 2013.  Later after being questioned by (see number 2 above) he said the baseline design will be done end of the month.
 
sorry about the sp
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: HappyMartian on 07/15/2011 03:49 AM
which provides the LOWEST TOTAL INTEGRATED MISSION COST. 

It is a given.  Non SDLV.

If you have zip interest in BLEO human spaceflight, maybe you are right. The 'cheapest' thing to do is hitch rides with Russia forever. Or maybe that isn't the 'cheapest' thing to do because that money going to Russia exits the American economy and we don't get an economic multiplier effect. But hey, who cares about the big picture anymore? Right? For those who are seriously interested in the Moon, well Jim, over the years you have repeatedly lost your argument for an Atlas V based launch system for everything program with almost everyone, including the Direct Team and NASA and Congress, and it wasn't just because the RD-180 isn't built in America.

As OV-106 and some others have repeatedly pointed out you cannot make absolute statements like Jim did unless you know the architecture and mission.

....
 
That without an integrated plan on how and why to use such capabilities it becomes meaningless.  That it sets itself up for defunding.  That "touching an asteriod" 20 years from now and "eventually" landing on Mars are not anywhere near the sufficient goal for spending that money now.  Spell out the architecture(s), mission scope(s) and time table(s) (you know, the missions with a capital "M") and show why these technologies are needed, when they need to be online, etc.  It provides focus, something that is totally lacking now. 

Why once again you and others have managed to try to focus this discussion on HLV/no-HLV, I will again point out that without the mission scope(s), destination(s) or time table(s), that you or nobody else can say if an HLV is not required and that the TOTAL mission costs are not less with an HLV than without it.  Again, if you wish to be proven correct than you should be asking for the EXACT SAME THING FROM NASA with regard to scope(s), destination(s), architecture(s) and time table(s).

It is quite clear to me that those within certain circles inside the administration and NASA exactly want this focus to be on the HLV/no-HLV argument.  It distracts EVERYONE and keeps NASA from answering the questions it should and must about the above that would ultimately answer the question once and for all. 
....

 

Jim, some Congressional folks clearly understand that humans, be they a combination of Russians, Indonesians, Australians, Ethiopians, Saudis, Iranians, Vietnamese, Chinese, Canadians, Turks, Indians, Singaporeans, Europeans, Koreans, Japanese, Brazilians, Nigerians, Malaysians, South Africans, and some smart folks from many other countries, are going to the hospitable polar regions of the Moon because that is where the fruit hangs low and water is very accessible.

There is no natural law of the universe that states Americans absolutely have to go back to the Moon. But if we don't go soon, our country won't be a leader of humanity's effort to utilize Lunar resources, will it? Ah well, we've carelessly given up our leadership in so many other areas of human activity, who cares about the Moon and cislunar space? Right? Nope. Wrong answer.

Even the smartest supporters of the President's reelection political goal of no NASA integrated plan for access to the Moon's resources cannot change the Moon's nearby orbit, the moon's shallow gavitational well when compared to that of the Earth's, the physical realities of Lunar resources, and the economic benefits of Lunar water to fundamentally reduce the costs of cislunar rocket propellant and everything we do in space and open up the inner Solar System to reusable human spaceships.   :)


See:
NASA Missions Uncover the Moon's Buried Treasures   http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/news/releases/2010/10-89AR.html

See:
http://science.house.gov/sites/republicans.science.house.gov/files/documents/hearings/071211_hall.pdf


Edited.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: jml on 07/15/2011 05:29 AM
Wall Street Journal has picked up on this....
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304521304576446271785497958.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
Quote
In the latest sign of escalating friction between lawmakers and the White House over NASA's future direction, Sens. Nelson and Hutchison on Thursday held a joint news conference expressing their concern and disappointment about continuing delays in announcing NASA's rocket plans.

Mr. Nelson has championed the new rocket partly as a way to reduce worker layoffs in his state stemming from the end of the shuttle program. The Florida lawmaker, who previously flew as a crew member aboard one of the space shuttles, told reporters Thursday that NASA "is ready to go with its big new rocket but [the Office of Management and Budget] is blocking it."

At the same news conference, Ms. Hutchison said the preliminary rocket design "is exactly what we asked for last year in Congress." She urged NASA to "get going" and "do the best for our taxpayers" by pursuing work on the proposed rocket and "holding on to the experienced people" working for the agency.

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison calls for immediate public release of the SLS decision. Presser release today, 7/13/2011.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Ranking Member on the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, today called for immediate action by the Administration and the Office of Management and Budget on approval of NASA's heavy lift vehicle. The Senator's statement follows:

http://hutchison.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=667


Somehow I knew Senator Hutchison would do something.  Thumbs up for you!
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: Jeff Bingham on 07/15/2011 05:35 AM
Ah, now here comes the Senate! (I do make myself laugh as what do I know about the meaning of that :D)

So for those that do. When a Senator says that, does NASA and OMB, panic, laugh, or say "meh!"?
"Ranking member" means she's the most senior member of the minority party on the committee. She doesn't get to set the agenda, the committee chairman (a Demoncrat) does. Also she's retiring at the end of her term so she's essentially a lame duck.

So how does NASA and the OMB respond to that? They work for the President, not for Congress. If he doesn't want to release the report just yet..... then the report doesn't get released. She can bluster all she wants but the administration will just ignore her.

Just to follow up "for the record." As Senator Hutchison, joined by Senator Nelson, stated in a press conference Thursday afternoon, she and Senator Nelson had just come from a meeting with OMB and NASA officials, where they were provided the information she had requested the day before. In the press briefing, they discussed the broad outlines of the vehicle design DECISION they had been presented with and expressed again their insistence that a formal public release of the Vehicle Design Decision be made before the end of the STS-135 mission. That is being considered further by the White House; a rather different outcome than the Administration "just ignoring" her.
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: NotGncDude on 07/15/2011 06:03 AM

Optimistic timeline.  Usually a bad idea with SpaceX.


lulz. As opposite to who?
Title: Re: LIVE: Full Committee Hearing - A Review of NASA's Space Launch System
Post by: aquanaut99 on 07/15/2011 06:25 AM
If you have zip interest in BLEO human spaceflight, maybe you are right. The 'cheapest' thing to do is hitch rides with Russia forever. Or maybe that isn't the 'cheapest' thing to do because that money going to Russia exits the American economy and we don't get an economic multiplier effect.

A slight rectification: The cheapest thing would be to abandon human spaceflight alltoghether. It would also have the added benefit of no longer having to send money to Russia, which tends to get people worked up.

Quote
There is no natural law of the universe that states Americans absolutely have to go back to the Moon. But if we don't go soon, our country won't be a leader of humanity's effort to utilize Lunar resources, will it? Ah well, we've carelessly given up our leadership in so many other areas of human activity, who cares about the Moon and cislunar space?

Well, maybe it's a question of priorities. Unless something drastic changes in the next few days, come August, the USA will no longer be able to pay its bills. The country will be bankrupt. No international partner will trust us anymore if we default on our debt and other obligations (especially not since this will send the whole world economy into another sharp recession and hurt all those other countries too, who will blame us for it).

Why should ISS partners like Russia trust us after that? Maybe the Russians will suddenly have "technical difficulties" and will be unable to transport our Astronauts to ISS. Unless we pay in cash, up front. With cash meaning a real currency, not the US dollar, which will be worthless like the Euro. Maybe Gold or Swiss francs or Yen or Yuan or whatever.

People, you need to recognize the predicament we are in. We are set to lose everything. Not just Shuttle. Not just our independant access to ISS. But human spaceflight in this country. All of it, the whole shebang. And much more than that. The county is about to go broke. No more social security, no welfare, no paychecks to govt employees, no paycheck to our fighting men and woman all over the world. We are about to become a third-world nation.

Now, in all honesty, does a third-world country have the means to carry out manned space exploration? More impo