Author Topic: Commercial Hubble Repair  (Read 34369 times)

Commercial Hubble Repair
« on: 05/05/2012 07:27 am »
Just a simple question. Can any currently planned commercial vehicle (with one or more launches) plan and complete a Hubble repair mission? I am looking forward to JWST as the next person but giving up such a still relevant instrument seems terrible to me. Any clues?

Offline Jorge

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #1 on: 05/05/2012 07:54 am »
Just a simple question. Can any currently planned commercial vehicle (with one or more launches) plan and complete a Hubble repair mission? I am looking forward to JWST as the next person but giving up such a still relevant instrument seems terrible to me. Any clues?

Hubble was outfitted with a passive LIDS interface and a set of laser retroreflectors during STS-125, so technically any of the commercial crew vehicles (Dragon, CST-100, Dream Chaser, and the Blue Origin vehicle) can rendezvous and dock with it.

Actually being able to perform a *useful* servicing mission is another matter. If any of the above vehicles can support standalone EVAs, that capability is certainly not being advertised yet. Only Dragon has any unpressurized cargo space for replacement instruments, and without a robotic arm, installation would be highly impractical.

In my opinion, an (as-yet unproposed) mission module would have to be developed and launched separately to provide said capabilities in order for any of these vehicles to perform a useful servicing mission.
JRF

Offline manboy

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #2 on: 05/05/2012 08:00 am »
Just a simple question. Can any currently planned commercial vehicle (with one or more launches) plan and complete a Hubble repair mission? I am looking forward to JWST as the next person but giving up such a still relevant instrument seems terrible to me. Any clues?
I'm not sure if any of the Commercial Crew vehicles support EVA.
« Last Edit: 05/05/2012 08:08 am by manboy »
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Offline krytek

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #3 on: 05/05/2012 12:41 pm »
There were rumors of a possible EVA and robotic arm capability for the Dream Chaser.

Offline manboy

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #4 on: 05/05/2012 12:55 pm »
There were rumors of a possible EVA and robotic arm capability for the Dream Chaser.
Those weren't rumors. Mark Sirangelo was talking about possible future variants.
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Offline corrodedNut

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #5 on: 05/05/2012 01:10 pm »
I finally managed to convert this file. Its from 2010, so some things are obsolete. As you can see (pp.15-24), SpaceX has given servicing missions some thought.


Offline Garrett

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #6 on: 05/05/2012 05:00 pm »
I finally managed to convert this file. Its from 2010, so some things are obsolete. As you can see (pp.15-24), SpaceX has given servicing missions some thought.

Thanks for that! Very interesting.
- "Nothing shocks me. I'm a scientist." - Indiana Jones

Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #7 on: 05/05/2012 05:39 pm »
I finally managed to convert this file. Its from 2010, so some things are obsolete. As you can see (pp.15-24), SpaceX has given servicing missions some thought.


Ya this was pretty much what I had in mind, glad to see someone has put some thought into it at least.

Offline adrianwyard

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #8 on: 05/05/2012 06:10 pm »
As mentioned earlier SNC has said they intend Dream Chaser be used for servicing too, but I've not seen any details. Has anyone else?

To be honest I think Dragon probably has the upper hand here mainly due to the many options afforded by the trunk, but here are some wild speculations on DC as a servicing vehicle:

+ The DC's rear tunnel seems about the right size for a 1 person air lock. By contrast, Dragon needs to be depressurized/repressurized entirely for EVA.

+ As with Dragon, a robotic arm would be protected inside a canister on the upper DC surface. If the base of the arm was near the cockpit windows these would provide excellent visibility for grapple and support of the EVA crewmember. (The interior of the arm canister will need handles to allow EVA translation from the back of DC to the work site.)

+ If the arm canister doesn't disrupt the aerodynamics too much the arm can be returned for re-use (unlike with Dragon.)

So, basically the same as Dragon except you have crewmembers supporting the EVA inside a pressurized vehicle - as happens with ISS EVAs - rather than while in their own EVA gear.
« Last Edit: 05/05/2012 06:15 pm by adrianwyard »

Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #9 on: 05/05/2012 06:20 pm »
As mentioned earlier SNC has said they intend Dream Chaser be used for servicing too, but I've not seen any details. Has anyone else?

To be honest I think Dragon probably has the upper hand here mainly due to the many options afforded by the trunk, but here are some wild speculations on DC as a servicing vehicle:

+ The DC's rear tunnel seems about the right size for a 1 person air lock. By contrast, Dragon needs to be depressurized/repressurized entirely for EVA.

+ As with Dragon, a robotic arm would be protected inside a canister on the upper DC surface. If the base of the arm was near the cockpit windows these would provide excellent visibility for grapple and support of the EVA crewmember. (The interior of the arm canister will need handles to allow EVA translation from the back of DC to the work site.)

+ If the arm canister doesn't disrupt the aerodynamics too much the arm can be returned for re-use (unlike with Dragon.)

So, basically the same as Dragon except you have crewmembers supporting the EVA inside a pressurized vehicle - as happens with ISS EVAs - rather than while in their own EVA gear.


Right, but with DC where would the new and old instruments go?

Offline adrianwyard

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #10 on: 05/05/2012 06:29 pm »
Right, but with DC where would the new and old instruments go?

It's a problem. That's where Dragon has the edge.

I initially thought that DC's Upper Stage fairing/adapter could be enlarged and converted into a Dragon-like trunk. Perhaps the aero-fairing would be jettisoned to save weight (like the Orion SM panels.) Unpressurized spares would be attached to this structure. If needed, solar panels could be attached here too.

The big problem with this is the OMS engines fire back into this area. Even speculative solutions to this sound nuts: Hinge the cargo structure to the side out of the way?

Offline docmordrid

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #11 on: 05/06/2012 01:01 am »
Right, but with DC where would the new and old instruments go?

Found these SpaecDev pics in my image collection, downloaded from the NASA CC pages. Low-res, but the idea comes through loud and clear.

Source: http://www.nasa.gov/offices/c3po/partners/spacedev/index.html
« Last Edit: 05/06/2012 04:36 am by docmordrid »
DM

Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #12 on: 05/06/2012 01:06 am »
Right, but with DC where would the new and old instruments go?

Found these SpaeDev pics in my image collection, downloaded from the NASA CC pages. Lor-es, but the idea comes through loud and clear.

Source: http://www.nasa.gov/offices/c3po/partners/spacedev/index.html

Yes it does! Any clue as to what the crew capacity would be with this configuration?

Offline docmordrid

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #13 on: 05/06/2012 01:17 am »
No clue. They're old images showing 4 engines vs. the current 2, and the long-gone  hybrid upper stage.

Still - I would think with a composite pressure vessel a cabin hatch and payload bay could be rapidly prototyped for a "Servicing Dream Chaser".

Rampant speculation:  2-4 seats, bulkhead with unpressurized cargo bay, a mini-MDA supplied arm & no rear docking adapter needed?
« Last Edit: 05/06/2012 01:18 am by docmordrid »
DM

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #14 on: 05/06/2012 04:28 am »
I still think the hybrid engines are a sort of tacky solution that won't live that long once (if) DC actually starts flying.
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Offline docmordrid

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #15 on: 05/06/2012 04:40 am »
A brace of SuperDraco's on either side would give it a kick in the gas, but that'll probably never happen.
DM

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #16 on: 05/06/2012 04:55 am »
A brace of SuperDraco's on either side would give it a kick in the gas, but that'll probably never happen.
There are other aerospace companies out there besides SpaceX. ;)
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To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline docmordrid

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #17 on: 05/06/2012 06:40 am »
I know - but it's hypergolic and in the thrust range to be an abort motor. What are the other options?
DM

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #18 on: 05/06/2012 04:36 pm »
I know - but it's hypergolic and in the thrust range to be an abort motor. What are the other options?
http://www.astronautix.com/fam/stoiquid.htm
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Re: Commercial Hubble Repair
« Reply #19 on: 05/06/2012 07:57 pm »
I know - but it's hypergolic and in the thrust range to be an abort motor. What are the other options?
http://www.astronautix.com/fam/stoiquid.htm

Thanks for this website, didn't know it existed! Wonderful knowledge source.

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