Author Topic: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech  (Read 285491 times)

Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #660 on: 04/22/2010 05:11 pm »
Zerm does a great analysis up there.

An analysis which equates an ICBM with a nuclear weapon would be too simplistic, thus of less utility. An ICBM without a warhead is analagous to a rifle without bullets; the latter is an expensive, elaborate stick of limited utility.  The inverted analogy, the single bullet and the single warhead, is not equivalent because the warhead is still quite dangerous, and can be delivered by alternate means, unlike the bullet.  Further, a world without nuclear weapons is not equivalent to a world without hi explosive weapons; the ICBM continues to have great utility.  Therefore, solid rocket production, especially on the scale of Ares, would have significant effect on national security, since large non-nuclear weapons are already virtually available for use.

The slo-mo Mexican standoff which characterized the first nuclear arms race has been fundamentally modified by the growing number of nuclear club members, the vocal irresponsibility of the soon to be new members, expected improvements in miniturization, the growing realization that dirty bombs would serve terrorist functions quite nicely, and other developments.  I would say that the Iranians are probably using nano-concrete in their new deeply dug facilities, which would be a lo-tech partial solution for protecting the facilities from attack.  This would require either official non-commital to a first strike, or sound confidence in new conventional delivery systems which could penetrate those defenses.

So I can easily see a national security scenario regarding the development of a heavy lift solid rocket, capable of any inclination.  How many segments it needs depends on how much you want to put on top of it.  100K pounds in a polar orbit, droppable at will?  Yowza.

So, will DoD be able to provide some funding, then?

The "sunk cost" issue keeps being repeated.  While it's a no-brainer to say that throwing good money after bad is a lousy strategy, it is the determination of whether or not that was "bad" money in the first place which causes the frenzied debate.  Clearly, I don't have adequate information on this, but not for want of asking.  Anyhow, the budgetary landscape is littered with the carcasses of discarded programs.  No-brainer example?  Check out the new proposed presidential helicopter.  Good thing that money... never mind, I was gonna get sarcastic.  One of the reasons we taxpayers aren't getting enough bang for the buck is because our government is burning so many of the bucks.

I'm in favor of scrapping Ares at this point were it true that the program would not deliver the crew and cargo capabilities that it was allegedly intended to.  This doesn't imply that I would abandon the principle of use what ya got.  Are there legitimate uses for the data, designs, and hardware created by the Ares program?  Senator Nelson seems to think so.  And the strategy of using the Senate Budget Resolution as a vehicle to argue for greater NASA funding is certainly good as well.

What Nelson doesn't seem to get is that the allocations in the budget proposal are incorrect, the proposed dates are completely speculative, and that the President errs completely in using the failed BTDT argument for a lunar outpost.  A sustainable plan will build on smaller operational steps, will seek and develop lunar mineral wealth and manufacturing capability, will involve the tourist industry, and will develop and perfect the L1 waystation on the path to Mars and NEO's.
I agree John. Additionally, if HLV is needed there is still SDHLV on the table. No need for ares. SDHLV could also fulfill the national security needs. 
BTW Whatever happend to scaled phase 1, 2 EELVS? :(
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Offline Jim

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #661 on: 04/22/2010 05:18 pm »

 SDHLV could also fulfill the national security needs. 


There are no security needs wrt SDLV's.

Offline Arthur

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #662 on: 04/22/2010 05:21 pm »

 SDHLV could also fulfill the national security needs. 


There are no security needs wrt SDLV's.

How heavy is a space based laser anti-missile system?
[what with just everybody jumping on the 'I need a nuclear missile, too' bandwagon.]

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #663 on: 04/22/2010 05:25 pm »

 SDHLV could also fulfill the national security needs. 


There are no security needs wrt SDLV's.

How heavy is a space based laser anti-missile system?
[what with just everybody jumping on the 'I need a nuclear missile, too' bandwagon.]

Lasers have too short a range in their current form for use as a space-based anti-missile weapon.  Something similar to the 'rail-gun' or 'brilliant pebble' (guided kinetic impactor) might work better.  However (and this is the key point) no space-based weapon system currently exists or is mature enough to go into testing

In any case, they would more likely be sized to be launchable on EELVs.
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Offline Arthur

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #664 on: 04/22/2010 05:37 pm »

 SDHLV could also fulfill the national security needs. 


There are no security needs wrt SDLV's.

How heavy is a space based laser anti-missile system?
[what with just everybody jumping on the 'I need a nuclear missile, too' bandwagon.]

Lasers have too short a range in their current form for use as a space-based anti-missile weapon.  Something similar to the 'rail-gun' or 'brilliant pebble' (guided kinetic impactor) might work better.  However (and this is the key point) no space-based weapon system currently exists or is mature enough to go into testing

In any case, they would more likely be sized to be launchable on EELVs.

OK.
I was just trying to think of a 100+ ton Military payload and remembered the pictures of the aircraft armed with lasers.

Offline Namechange User

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #665 on: 04/22/2010 05:39 pm »

 SDHLV could also fulfill the national security needs. 


There are no security needs wrt SDLV's.

How heavy is a space based laser anti-missile system?
[what with just everybody jumping on the 'I need a nuclear missile, too' bandwagon.]

Lasers have too short a range in their current form for use as a space-based anti-missile weapon.  Something similar to the 'rail-gun' or 'brilliant pebble' (guided kinetic impactor) might work better.  However (and this is the key point) no space-based weapon system currently exists or is mature enough to go into testing

In any case, they would more likely be sized to be launchable on EELVs.

There was a reference today in the Senate hearing about details that need to remain classified.  Obviously, there is no need for conjecture on that topic but it dealt directly with the need for an HLV and relatively soon. 
« Last Edit: 04/22/2010 05:39 pm by OV-106 »
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Offline yg1968

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #666 on: 04/22/2010 05:58 pm »
I get the feeling that anything that is proposed as needing additionnal funding on top of the NASA $19B Budget has little chance of being approved by Congress.

IMO, if there were serious about maintaining the 5 segment booster (or for that matter of extending the Shuttle), they would shift the funds from other items in the NASA Budget to the 5 segment booster tests (or for Shuttle extension).

IMO, by asking for additionnal funds, they are essentially saying, we tried but unfortunatelly we couldn't get the rest of Congress to approve it. In other words, it's a message to say that we are the good guys that fought for you and the other Senators are the bad guys. Bu in reality, they know this has no real chance of being approved in the current fiscal environment.
« Last Edit: 04/22/2010 05:59 pm by yg1968 »

Offline cuddihy

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #667 on: 04/22/2010 08:44 pm »

He said, in part: “You have allowed in this the flexibility of continuing the testing for that big solid rocket motor called the Ares 1-X, which will not only be important to the future of us getting out of low Earth orbit by building a heavy-lift vehicle for NASA, but is going to be critical to the solid rocket motors that protect this country’s national security.”


The nation security card has been trumped over.  The DOD has now said there is no linkage between large diameter solids and national security needs.   Solids for ICBM's are half as wide and continuous pour vs segmented.

Well, according to Gary Payton (Dep UNSECAF for Space):
Quote
[on concern about ending the shuttle SRB line and the (affect on)  military solids lines] . . . "We've come to find out that it has a trivial impact . . . because we don't use the big three and a half meter solids, we use the one-and-a-half meter . . ."

Jim to be fair I excerpted that in a different context, that of DOD EELV launch solids A few sentences after my excerpt ended he says there will be slight increase in costs for ICBM and SLBM lines. But still overplayed by SDLV proponents

Offline orbitjunkie

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #668 on: 04/23/2010 02:28 am »

 SDHLV could also fulfill the national security needs. 


There are no security needs wrt SDLV's.

There was a reference today in the Senate hearing about details that need to remain classified.  Obviously, there is no need for conjecture on that topic but it dealt directly with the need for an HLV and relatively soon. 


Check out my previous post on page 42.
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=21269.msg580377#msg580377

But if near term HLV really is important for national security applications it is curious that the Air Force isn't doing anything to push for it. And you'd think that the President would know about these kinds of things and would have worked it into his plans. Unless we don't want to tip our hand to other folks that we would make use of it. I can imagine a lot of people would really appreciate a monolithic telescope in GEO staring at Iran these days (or something like that).

Offline Jim

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #669 on: 04/23/2010 02:37 am »

But if near term HLV really is important for national security applications it is curious that the Air Force isn't doing anything to push for it.

 It isn't important.
A.  Originally, it thought it would have an effect on SRM production wrt to ICBM and SLBM motors.  That is where the national security implications (not applications).   However, this wasn't true. The missiles use motor less than 1/2 diameter of shuttle SRB's and are monolithic pours vs segment.

2.  Because there are no payloads for it.  Payloads don't get built and wait for boosters.  If there is a requirement for a larger booster, it gets funded and built along side of the payload.
« Last Edit: 04/23/2010 02:38 am by Jim »

Offline Jim

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #670 on: 04/23/2010 02:39 am »
However, I have a colleague who works in the national security related govt organizations that would care about launching really big things in space. The things he was able to share with me are that he gets the impression there are at least a couple of projects sitting on the ground just waiting on a "heavy" launch capability, and a couple more waiting on such a capability to exist so they can be green-lighted.

false impression.  It just isn't done that way. 

Offline orbitjunkie

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #671 on: 04/23/2010 02:49 am »
However, I have a colleague who works in the national security related govt organizations that would care about launching really big things in space. The things he was able to share with me are that he gets the impression there are at least a couple of projects sitting on the ground just waiting on a "heavy" launch capability, and a couple more waiting on such a capability to exist so they can be green-lighted.

false impression.  It just isn't done that way. 

I agree it, it seemed pretty odd to me, too. I was just reporting it. But I don't work in that world so I guess I can't say for certain. And stranger things have happened.

Offline Danderman

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #672 on: 04/23/2010 07:18 am »

1. I get the impression Obama doesn't care about any potential impact that large solid rocket production would have on "national security". The common (though not necessarily correct) understanding seems to be that the "large-SRB industrial base" builds ICBMs. ICBMs launch nuclear weapons. Obama wants a world without nuclear weapons and is taking clear steps to make sure the US will probably never use them. So the ICBMs they fly on are irrelevant.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/23/world/europe/23strike.html

Incredibly poor timing by the NY Times to break a story indicating that Obama has some interest in ICBMs, although not so much for the nuclear warheads. Apparently, there is a new wrinkle in DoD military planning that makes ICBMs suitable as conventional weapons.

Offline stealthyplains

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #673 on: 04/23/2010 07:34 am »
i think the above NY Times story is rather clearly an administration leak indicating the success of the HTV-2 test, which is a demonstrator of the technology described

Offline Proponent

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #674 on: 04/23/2010 07:56 am »
Apparently, there is a new wrinkle in DoD military planning that makes ICBMs suitable as conventional weapons.

In a recent Senate Budget Committee hearing, Sen. Nelson refers to classified developments related to large solid motors:

"You [the chairman, Sen. Conrad] have allowed in this the flexibility of continuing the testing for that big solid rocket motor called the Ares 1-X, which will not only be important to the future of us getting out of low Earth orbit by building a heavy-lift vehicle for NASA, but is going to be critical to the solid rocket motors that protect this country’s national security.”

A moment later, Sen. Conrad says that large solid rocket motors are "absolutely essential to national security."  He goes on to say that these developments cannot be discussed in open session, so presumably it's something more than how the cost of maintaining the manufacturing base for large solid motors with Ares.

Were Nelson and Conrad obliquely referring to the Prompt Global Strike system (non-nuclear ICBM) mentioned in the NY Times article?

Offline Jim

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #675 on: 04/23/2010 12:25 pm »
Apparently, there is a new wrinkle in DoD military planning that makes ICBMs suitable as conventional weapons.

In a recent Senate Budget Committee hearing, Sen. Nelson refers to classified developments related to large solid motors:

"You [the chairman, Sen. Conrad] have allowed in this the flexibility of continuing the testing for that big solid rocket motor called the Ares 1-X, which will not only be important to the future of us getting out of low Earth orbit by building a heavy-lift vehicle for NASA, but is going to be critical to the solid rocket motors that protect this country’s national security.”

A moment later, Sen. Conrad says that large solid rocket motors are "absolutely essential to national security."  He goes on to say that these developments cannot be discussed in open session, so presumably it's something more than how the cost of maintaining the manufacturing base for large solid motors with Ares.

Were Nelson and Conrad obliquely referring to the Prompt Global Strike system (non-nuclear ICBM) mentioned in the NY Times article?

Gary Payton nixed this. 

Quote
[on concern about ending the shuttle SRB line and the military solids lines] . . . We've come to find out that it has a trivial impact . . . because we don't use the big three and a half meter solids, we use the one-and-a-half meter . . ."

Offline Namechange User

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #676 on: 04/23/2010 12:51 pm »
So what was the point in the Senators saying this?  I know you have an agenda to discredit everything related to Shuttle, and promote ULA but are you really so willing to dismiss this?
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Offline Jim

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #677 on: 04/23/2010 01:43 pm »
So what was the point in the Senators saying this?  I know you have an agenda to discredit everything related to Shuttle, and promote ULA but are you really so willing to dismiss this?

The Senators were just repeating "last week's"  old new.  Yes, I am will to dismiss it.  Weapon systems have never been dependent on larger segmented SRM's.  The USAF purposely  excluded them for the EELV development. 

It am not dismissing this from the shuttle point of view.  I believe that a shuttle extension is a good idea for gap mitigation and should have not been canceled until there was a follow on.  I just have accepted that it is not going to happen and are supporting the follow on programs.

I am also willing to dismiss it because I see it as an excuse for  having more Ares I-X test flights .  There is no utility in Ares I-X test flights for non single SRB vehicle.
« Last Edit: 04/23/2010 01:44 pm by Jim »

Offline renclod

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #678 on: 04/23/2010 06:35 pm »

srm_ind_cap_report-redacted_6-12-09.pdf
page 10
figure 4 - redacted !


Offline dks13827

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Re: Post-speech discussion about Obama's April 15 KSC speech
« Reply #679 on: 04/24/2010 02:23 am »
Ares quote:
'But in response to a question from Mr. Shelby about the safety of the different rocket options, General Bolden said, “My gut tells me that Ares would be safer than anything else.” '

I have never understood the red faced hatred of Ares !
Never will.  They were trying, and succeeding, to make a safe and capable vehicle.

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