Author Topic: QuikSCAT failure  (Read 12129 times)

Offline Blackstar

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #20 on: 11/26/2009 03:27 am »
Per the Commercial Space Act of 1998, the government should put out an RFP indicating the data required, and select a company to provide that data - in other words, NASA should not design the spacecraft nor the instrument to obtain the data.

This argument does not reflect how science actually works.  The scientists who use the data have to be intimately involved in the design of the instrument.  Instrument development is an iterative process that doesn't involve simply specifying "data required."

And who do you think builds NASA satellites anyways?  Contractors.

Offline Antares

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #21 on: 11/26/2009 06:27 pm »
NASA: Not so much (although on rare occasions they do), see CONTOUR or OCO.

Not fair comparisons.  CONTOUR had celestial mechanics targets to hit that could not be done on a reflight. OCO 2 is under serious consideration.
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Offline Danderman

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #22 on: 11/26/2009 06:41 pm »
This argument does not reflect how science actually works.  The scientists who use the data have to be intimately involved in the design of the instrument.  Instrument development is an iterative process that doesn't involve simply specifying "data required."

Is this the case in the Real World? Do scientists principally use data obtained from instruments they themselves designed? If not, why is space science somehow "different"?

Were the Landsat sensors designed by the users?

Offline Analyst

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #23 on: 11/26/2009 07:04 pm »
NASA: Not so much (although on rare occasions they do), see CONTOUR or OCO.

Not fair comparisons.  CONTOUR had celestial mechanics targets to hit that could not be done on a reflight. OCO 2 is under serious consideration.

COUTOUR could have used other targets. Rosetta for instance does. Is there really serious talk about OCO-2? Last I heard it is pretty much a non starter, because of SMD budget.

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Offline Analyst

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #24 on: 11/26/2009 07:11 pm »
This argument does not reflect how science actually works.  The scientists who use the data have to be intimately involved in the design of the instrument.  Instrument development is an iterative process that doesn't involve simply specifying "data required."

Is this the case in the Real World? Do scientists principally use data obtained from instruments they themselves designed? If not, why is space science somehow "different"?

Were the Landsat sensors designed by the users?


It is the case in the real world. For non standard measuring devices. Sure. Who else than the scientists who know what and how they want to measure something should design them? Who do you think came up with the large detectors at the LHC? Yes scientists, not some commercial company came up with the design. (This does not exclude commercial companies having scientists, or building the instruments in interaction with them.) And the whole process does can mean in the end there are much more users than the few scientists who came up with the instrument idea in the first place.

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Offline Danderman

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #25 on: 11/26/2009 08:18 pm »
It is the case in the real world. For non standard measuring devices.

This implies that the sensors required to produce data on ocean temperatures are non-standard, and that there is some special scientist out there who is the only one who can design a sensor to provide that data. I find it hard to believe that this is the case.

If the requirement is to continue producing data in the same format as Quickscat, then the obvious thing to do is publish that requirement and select a replacement sensor/bus combination via commercial bidding.

If, on the other hand, the desirement is to generate a better sensor, then one can expect the same process of "scientist claims they can do it better, they get funded, things cost more than expected, the project lags, Congress does not provide extra funding, the whole thing either gets canceled or flies years after the original timeline".

Again, the better is the enemy of the good enough, in this case.

Offline Analyst

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #26 on: 11/27/2009 06:57 am »
It is the case in the real world. For non standard measuring devices.

1) This implies that the sensors required to produce data on ocean temperatures are non-standard, and that there is some special scientist out there who is the only one who can design a sensor to provide that data. I find it hard to believe that this is the case.

2) If the requirement is to continue producing data in the same format as Quickscat, then the obvious thing to do is publish that requirement and select a replacement sensor/bus combination via commercial bidding.

3) If, on the other hand, the desirement is to generate a better sensor, then one can expect the same process of "scientist claims they can do it better, they get funded, things cost more than expected, the project lags, Congress does not provide extra funding, the whole thing either gets canceled or flies years after the original timeline".

4) Again, the better is the enemy of the good enough, in this case.

1) The QuikSCAT sensor has been the only one of its kind flying. No replacement is planned for about 7 years. This pretty much define unique, non-standard, don't you think. You don#t buy it next door.

2) I don't get your fixation with commercial. A company would built the spacecraft anyway, a company would launch it. But their is no off-the-shelf sensor to buy. And even if your commercial way is better or even possible: There has been no money for this way too. So what exactly is your point with respect to the problem we are talking about?

3) This is the definition of progress. You do better than the last time, 10 years ago. You have learned stuff to improve things, you have better electronics, ... And I again refer to 2): There has been no budget for a “simple” replacement too.

4) We don’t even have “good enough”, not even talking “better” here.

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Offline eeergo

Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #27 on: 10/16/2018 09:44 am »
Necrothreading to mark the end of this venerable satellite's mission (calibration standard for newer satellites after its main mission instrument failure in 2009): https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=7260

It was switched off on the 2nd of this month.
-DaviD-

Online Orbiter

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #28 on: 10/16/2018 04:04 pm »
It really would be nice to get some sort of relatively modern scatterometer up there for a true QuikSCAT replacement at least to better ascertain tropical cyclone strength and organization, especially in light of the 2017 and 2018 Atlantic hurricane seasons. RapidSCAT was unreliable due to the elliptical nature of the ISS's orbit and ASCAT has massive gaps in coverage and lower resolution than QuikSCAT had.
« Last Edit: 10/16/2018 04:06 pm by Orbiter »
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Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: QuikSCAT failure
« Reply #29 on: 10/17/2018 11:43 am »
What about the Indian Scatsat 1 mission?
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