Author Topic: The Russian Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) Updates Thread (NET 2018)  (Read 292668 times)

Offline woods170

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #60 on: 03/16/2012 07:48 PM »
There is a discussion in the NK forum about another delay for the MLM. Apparently, Roskosmos has not ordered the launcher for MLM yet, and Energia's design for MLM outfitting is not the same as the Roskosmos requirements.


the date slipped the other day.  Now into 2014

Just asked my NLR contact about this. He said the same. Launch NET spring 2014. I will ask my ESA contact as well.

Got a reply from my ESA contact as well as additional information from my NLR contact. The constant delays to the launch of MLM are becoming a hornets nest.
The Netherlands is the supplier of the ERA robotic arm that is set to be launched on MLM. The Dutch government had just signed a contract worth several million Euros to speed up delivery of MLM for a launch in July 2013. The ink on this contract had barely dried when Thomas Reiter (director Human Spaceflight & Operations) anounced the delay, courtesy of Russia.
The Dutch government is seriously upset over this and is now contemplating pulling the plug on ERA. You see, despite the 'E' of ESA being part of the ERA acronym, most of the money for ERA comes from the Dutch government.
ESA top brass was not amused either by this latest Russian delay. Both ESA and the Dutch government will likely start putting pressure on Russia to have the MLM launch-date moved to back to the left. And indications are that the contract mentioned above will be terminated shortly.

Offline Jorge

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #61 on: 03/16/2012 08:18 PM »
Why does the launch keep getting delayed?

There are two rules applicable to this situation.

1) It's always about the money.
2) When it's "not about the money", see rule 1. It's always about the money, even when it's "not about the money". Especially when it's "not about the money".
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Offline PeterAlt

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #62 on: 03/16/2012 09:57 PM »
What is that contract above for? Can't read the Russian in my iPhone.

Also, if you want to link this to a conspiracy theory, my the delays are intentional and deliberate, since this module is the first module of their planned OPSEK space station (which is planned for operation after the life of the ISS at a higher orbit from detached RS modules). Since these modules include MLM (and the Node Module), delays in launching them, in return, increase their life expectancies for service in the future as OPSEK modules. Given that ISS has officially been given a life extension by a least a few years, the Russian delays in launching the newer modules by a few years perfectly accommodates the planned end of ISS service for the (now delayed) start of OPSEK service.

I don't like conspiracy theories and I hope this is not the case.

Offline Jim

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #63 on: 03/17/2012 12:51 AM »
I don't like conspiracy theories and I hope this is not the case.

Then don't suggest them.  It isn't the case.  There is no money for OPSEK either.

Offline Danderman

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #64 on: 03/17/2012 04:10 AM »
What is that contract above for? Can't read the Russian in my iPhone.

Also, if you want to link this to a conspiracy theory, my the delays are intentional and deliberate, since this module is the first module of their planned OPSEK space station (which is planned for operation after the life of the ISS at a higher orbit from detached RS modules). Since these modules include MLM (and the Node Module), delays in launching them, in return, increase their life expectancies for service in the future as OPSEK modules. Given that ISS has officially been given a life extension by a least a few years, the Russian delays in launching the newer modules by a few years perfectly accommodates the planned end of ISS service for the (now delayed) start of OPSEK service.

I don't like conspiracy theories and I hope this is not the case.

Let's say that MLM is delayed until 2015, but ISS is extended through 2028. That makes the MLM 13 years old at that time, probably not worth salvaging.

Offline manboy

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #65 on: 03/17/2012 05:02 AM »
Why does the launch keep getting delayed?

There are two rules applicable to this situation.

1) It's always about the money.
2) When it's "not about the money", see rule 1. It's always about the money, even when it's "not about the money". Especially when it's "not about the money".
Of course it has to do with money but I wanted an answer a little more specific.
"Cheese has been sent into space before. But the same cheese has never been sent into space twice." - StephenB

Offline Stan Black

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #66 on: 03/17/2012 06:17 AM »
What is that contract above for? Can't read the Russian in my iPhone.

The contract was for just the Proton-M, to be completed by October 2009.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=17568.msg833122#msg833122

Proton-K had a shelf life of 5 years.

http://www.old.mil.ru/848/1045/1276/18716/index.shtml

Offline PeterAlt

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #67 on: 03/17/2012 08:46 PM »
Dander, I read somewhere that MLM was designed for a lifespan of
30 years.

Offline PeterAlt

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #68 on: 03/17/2012 08:57 PM »
In response to there not being money for OPEK, two modules of OPEK are already funded: MLM and the Node Module. The rest of the modules have been approved "authorized" via the 5-year spending plan. You could expect the next OPEK module to be funded in the Russian fiscal year following completion and launch of MLM and Node (now looking like 2014 or 2015). Of course, design work has to be done first, so those modules are likely to slip further right.

Offline Jim

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #69 on: 03/18/2012 10:47 AM »
In response to there not being money for OPEK, two modules of OPEK are already funded: MLM and the Node Module.

Funding must include the  launch vehicle. A module on the ground is useless.  Money IS the problem.  OPEK is still not real.   MLM and the Node Module are part of the ISS. 

Offline Space Pete

Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #70 on: 03/18/2012 03:08 PM »
Strange...

Russia to launch new ISS module in 2013 as scheduled: Roscosmos

Russia's federal space agency Roscosmos denied reports Friday of a delay to the launch of the new multi-purpose Nauka lab for the International Space Station (ISS).

"The launch has been planned for the second half of 2013. No decisions about a delay have been made," said Alexei Krasnov, head of Roscosmos' department for manned flights.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sci/2012-03/16/c_122845684.htm
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Offline woods170

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #71 on: 03/18/2012 07:22 PM »
Strange...

Russia to launch new ISS module in 2013 as scheduled: Roscosmos

Russia's federal space agency Roscosmos denied reports Friday of a delay to the launch of the new multi-purpose Nauka lab for the International Space Station (ISS).

"The launch has been planned for the second half of 2013. No decisions about a delay have been made," said Alexei Krasnov, head of Roscosmos' department for manned flights.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sci/2012-03/16/c_122845684.htm

That's because Thursday they got very angry official reactions from both the Dutch government and ESA. Standard reaction by the Russians is then to deny everything. Despite Glasnost not a whole lot has changed with regards to the standard Russian kneejerk reaction when people start asking questions they don't like.
Witin a few months this "no decision about a delay has been made"  will turn into "A decision about a delay has been made". The july 2013 launch date is off the table, it will be 2014, no matter what Krasnov now tries to convince us of.
« Last Edit: 03/18/2012 07:25 PM by woods170 »

Offline Danderman

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #72 on: 03/19/2012 12:17 AM »
Krasnov may be technically correct, in that the official decision to delay the launch has not yet been made.  Officially, MLM is still scheduled for launch next year.

Of course, Roskosmos may make the decision to officially delay the launch.

Offline woods170

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #73 on: 03/20/2012 10:35 AM »
Krasnov may be technically correct, in that the official decision to delay the launch has not yet been made.  Officially, MLM is still scheduled for launch next year.

Of course, Roskosmos may make the decision to officially delay the launch.

From what I'm hearing it's not so much that Roskosmos 'may' make the decision to delay... no, Roskosmos 'will' make the decision to delay the launch.

Offline manboy

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #74 on: 03/21/2012 08:13 AM »
"That's coming around towards the end of 2013, as we understand it" @ ~1:05:00

« Last Edit: 03/21/2012 08:16 AM by manboy »
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Offline Space Pete

Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #75 on: 04/09/2012 03:14 PM »
An update on the MLM:

Quote
We will also continue our efforts aimed at building the Multipurpose Laboratory Module for the International Space Station.  This module will feature absolutely new properties and functionality that will expand the ISS abilities in the field of research and engineering experimentation.  In this effort we collaborate with Energia RKK, a Russian space-oriented corporation.  We stick closely to the established schedule though not without problems.  This totally new module is to be an extremely sophisticated item with a vast functional potential.  It will contain a great number of newly-designed systems, which entails permanent updates of design documents.  Still, we must make this endeavor a reality.

At present, an electrical simulator of the new module is at Energia and much will depend on what this simulator will show.  The results of its tests will define the due date for the shipment of the flight article to the City of Korolev where Energia is located.  There exists the due date 2013 established by the authorities, there exists a governing document and we have been working in compliance with this directive.

From an interview with Vladimir Nesterov, Khrunichev General Director.
http://www.khrunichev.ru/main.php?id=1&nid=738
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Offline woods170

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #76 on: 04/09/2012 06:06 PM »
An update on the MLM:

Quote
We will also continue our efforts aimed at building the Multipurpose Laboratory Module for the International Space Station.  This module will feature absolutely new properties and functionality that will expand the ISS abilities in the field of research and engineering experimentation.  In this effort we collaborate with Energia RKK, a Russian space-oriented corporation.  We stick closely to the established schedule though not without problems.  This totally new module is to be an extremely sophisticated item with a vast functional potential.  It will contain a great number of newly-designed systems, which entails permanent updates of design documents.  Still, we must make this endeavor a reality.

At present, an electrical simulator of the new module is at Energia and much will depend on what this simulator will show.  The results of its tests will define the due date for the shipment of the flight article to the City of Korolev where Energia is located.  There exists the due date 2013 established by the authorities, there exists a governing document and we have been working in compliance with this directive.

From an interview with Vladimir Nesterov, Khrunichev General Director.
http://www.khrunichev.ru/main.php?id=1&nid=738
And that confirms the due date for shipping the flight article to Energia as somewhere in 2013. With all the work that then remains on MLM the launch date will definitely go into 2014, like it was communicated by the Russians to ESA a few weeks ago. Oh well...

Offline Space Pete

Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #77 on: 04/09/2012 06:33 PM »
And that confirms the due date for shipping the flight article to Energia as somewhere in 2013. With all the work that then remains on MLM the launch date will definitely go into 2014, like it was communicated by the Russians to ESA a few weeks ago. Oh well...

I should think that it would depend on when in 2013 it would be shipped - if it's in Q1 or Q2, then there may be enough time to launch it in Q4.
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Offline Danderman

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #78 on: 05/02/2012 02:36 PM »
Anik reports in the NK forum that the flight article will be delivered to Energia at the end of 2012. I would expect 18 months between this milestone and launch.

Offline woods170

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Re: Will the Russian MLM Ever Actually be Launched?
« Reply #79 on: 05/02/2012 05:21 PM »
Anik reports in the NK forum that the flight article will be delivered to Energia at the end of 2012. I would expect 18 months between this milestone and launch.
Yes, and that fits nicely with what the Russians had told ESA to expect already. Launch is now NET first half of 2014.

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