Author Topic: NASA Selects Commercial Firms to Begin Development of Crew Transportation  (Read 118262 times)

Offline mmeijeri

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And here we see the beginnings of real competition...
We will be vic-toooooo-ri-ous!!!

Offline yg1968

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Well, if it was real competition, they wouldn't get milestones payments. They would only get money for the finished product.
« Last Edit: 02/01/2010 10:53 pm by yg1968 »

Offline yg1968

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The good news for SpaceX is that their proposal was for a launch abort system (LAS) and it doesn't seem like any of these other companies' proposal were for a launch abort system (as far as I know). So they didn't lose out to anybody in that sense.

SpaceX insists that they only need help with the LAS and that they have enough money for Falcon 9 and Dragon with the COTS and CRS contracts. In a nutshell, NASA's not going to give SpaceX money for something that they are not even asking for. They may get money for a LAS once NASA stars awarding contracts for that. I admit that this is a guess on my part. But it seems logical to me...

Well, I can report now that HMX's proposal was for a universal launch abort system applicable to several capsule concepts.  Obviously we didn't win, but we remain interested in developing the system.  It's a novel concept that we'll present later this year at AIAA Space 2010.

It should be interesting. NASA may prefer a universal solution for Boeing's capsule and for the Dragon capsule. I believe that Jim was saying in another post that the Dream Chaser already has a LAS. But it would still be very good for the capsules.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=19349.msg499510#msg499510
« Last Edit: 02/01/2010 11:29 pm by yg1968 »

Offline Bernie Roehl

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This is one of the few good news that came out today. The Dream Chaser is one of the coolest vehicule there is. I was quitely rooting for the Dream Chaser.   

Yes, I've always liked Dream Chaser as well.  I just never thought they'd get funded!

I like Dragon too, but I doubt it will ever fly on anything except a Falcon 9.  The Dream Chaser could launch on an Atlas V, Delta IV, Falcon 9...

Offline Robotbeat

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The good news for SpaceX is that their proposal was for a launch abort system (LAS) and it doesn't seem like any of these other companies' proposal were for a launch abort system (as far as I know). So they didn't lose out to anybody in that sense.

SpaceX insists that they only need help with the LAS and that they have enough money for Falcon 9 and Dragon with the COTS and CRS contracts. In a nutshell, NASA's not going to give SpaceX money for something that they are not even asking for. They may get money for a LAS once NASA stars awarding contracts for that. I admit that this is a guess on my part. But it seems logical to me...

Well, I can report now that HMX's proposal was for a universal launch abort system applicable to several capsule concepts.  Obviously we didn't win, but we remain interested in developing the system.  It's a novel concept that we'll present later this year at AIAA Space 2010.

It should be interesting. NASA may prefer a universal solution for Boeing's capsule and for the Dragon capsule. Although I believe that Jim was saying that the Dream Chaser already has a LAS.
A universal LAS sounds like a good idea to me.

Dream Chaser is supposed to use a hybrid rocket for abort, I believe. It's a pusher rocket system, I believe. I don't know if hybrids are still baselined for it or if it's going to liquids now. I heard rumors from OV-106 about liquid pusher abort motors, but not any context about WHO would be using them.
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Offline Ronsmytheiii

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One thing not mentioned is the fact that the money has been given to companies that rely on EELV's. There still exists Pentagon opposition to Human Space Flight on EELV's without another production line.  So what gives?

Offline Jim

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It should be interesting. NASA may prefer a universal solution for Boeing's capsule and for the Dragon capsule.


No.  That would not be within the scope of a commercial crew service.  NASA may request "a" escape system but not a specific one.

Offline mmeijeri

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Could it procure such a system and offer it to manned spaceflight providers, perhaps only for its own use, perhaps also for commercial applications? Sort of like an approved default system?
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Offline mmeijeri

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"These selections represent a critical step to enable future
commercial human spaceflight," said Doug Cooke, associate
administrator for Exploration Systems at NASA. "These impressive
proposals will advance NASA significantly along the path to using
commercial services to ferry astronauts to and from low Earth orbit,
and we look forward to working with the selected teams," Cooke said.
(emphasis added)

Heheh.
« Last Edit: 02/01/2010 11:49 pm by mmeijeri »
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Offline Namechange User

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It should be interesting. NASA may prefer a universal solution for Boeing's capsule and for the Dragon capsule.


No.  That would not be within the scope of a commercial crew service.  NASA may request "a" escape system but not a specific one.

Plus, it could be problematic when having to deal with ICD's between a universal LAS and whatever the mold line of the vehicle may be.  In addition that could set up dynamics and guidance problems.
Enjoying viewing the forum a little better now by filtering certain users.

Offline HMXHMX

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Here is the source selection statement, which is public information.

What I find interesting is that apparently the Blue Origin proposal involves a pusher abort system as well.

Offline mr. mark

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I think from past remarks Spacex would like to develop their LAS in house. Seems that they can push forward much faster than if it was developed by another company.

Offline yg1968

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Here is the source selection statement, which is public information.

What I find interesting is that apparently the Blue Origin proposal involves a pusher abort system as well.

Thanks very informative. It seems SpaceX was asking for too much money from NASA...
« Last Edit: 02/02/2010 02:38 am by yg1968 »

Offline neilh

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Here is the source selection statement, which is public information.

What I find interesting is that apparently the Blue Origin proposal involves a pusher abort system as well.

Wow, thanks!

For future reference, I've typed up the ratings from that doc below. Ratings are Blue (very high level of confidence), Green, White, Yellow, and Red (very low level of confidence). First color is for the evaluation of the Commercial Crew Capability Maturation Plan, while the second color is for the Company Information Evaluation. If there's values in parentheses, it's what the final evaluation was after due diligence by the company.

ATK: yellow / white
Andrews: white / white
Ball: green / white; (green / green)
Bigelow: yellow / green
Blue Origin: white / green; (green / green)
Boeing: green / green; (blue / green)
Firestar Engineering: yellow / yellow
HMX: yellow / yellow
Oceaneering: yellow / yellow
Odyssey Space Research: red / white
Orbital Outfitters: white / white
Orbital Sciences: white / white
Paragon: green / green; (green / blue)
PlanetSpace: yellow / white
Sierra Nevade: white / green; (green / blue)
SpaceX: white / white; (green / green)
ULA: green / blue; (green / blue)
XCOR: green / green; (green / green)

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Offline yg1968

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Here is the source selection statement, which is public information.

What I find interesting is that apparently the Blue Origin proposal involves a pusher abort system as well.

Did you receive this letter today or on December 8th?

Offline Ronsmytheiii

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Here is the source selection statement, which is public information.

What I find interesting is that apparently the Blue Origin proposal involves a pusher abort system as well.

OSC should have been evaluated further if SpaceX was....

Offline HMXHMX

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Here is the source selection statement, which is public information.

What I find interesting is that apparently the Blue Origin proposal involves a pusher abort system as well.

Did you receive this letter today or on December 8th?

Today.

Offline general

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The interesting tidbit in all this is that ULA is a common theme.  Boeing is flying their capsule on an Atlas or Delta.  Sierra Nevada is flying Dream Chaser on Atlas.  And ULA is developing an Emergency Detection System that is good for all space craft.

So it looks like ULA is in the cat bird's seat to launch Commercial Crew. 

Far from risky.  Good sound approach for NASA

Perhaps the use of existing, flight-proven launch vehicles will help calm the nerves of all the naysayers out there.

Offline yg1968

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Although you almost have to assume that NASA will choose at least 2 rockets for commercial crew in case one fails to deliver. I would guess ULA and SpaceX.
« Last Edit: 02/02/2010 03:51 am by yg1968 »

Offline Lampyridae

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Here is the source selection statement, which is public information.

What I find interesting is that apparently the Blue Origin proposal involves a pusher abort system as well.

Wow, thanks!

For future reference, I've typed up the ratings from that doc below. Ratings are Blue (very high level of confidence), Green, White, Yellow, and Red (very low level of confidence). First color is for the evaluation of the Commercial Crew Capability Maturation Plan, while the second color is for the Company Information Evaluation. If there's values in parentheses, it's what the final evaluation was after due diligence by the company.

Same info, just put it in a nice table.

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