Author Topic: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2  (Read 522477 times)

Offline clongton

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #500 on: 08/21/2014 11:12 pm »
Also, "measured in mass" is a novel way of measuring design completion.

You see, that's the kind of thing that I loath about Big Corporations that make their living sucking on the government teat. "Novel" doesn't even come close. That is such a B.S. metric that I can't believe that anybody would stoop that low to actually say such a thing in public. It is incredibly imbecilic and simpleminded and reflects incredibly poorly on the management and company that fostered it. I really feel for the incredibly talented and hardworking men and women who work for that company and now have to shamefacedly face their friends, families and neighbors and try to explain to them what that "novel" metric actually means. How do you defend such an incredibly dense statement by people who are supposed to be grownups?
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Offline IslandPlaya

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #501 on: 08/21/2014 11:21 pm »
Also, "measured in mass" is a novel way of measuring design completion.

You see, that's the kind of thing that I loath about Big Corporations that make their living sucking on the government teat. "Novel" doesn't even come close. That is such a B.S. metric that I can't believe that anybody would stoop that low to actually say such a thing in public. It is incredibly imbecilic and simpleminded and reflects incredibly poorly on the management and company that fostered it. I really feel for the incredibly talented and hardworking men and women who work for that company and now have to shamefacedly face their friends, families and neighbors and try to explain to them what that "novel" metric actually means. How do you defend such an incredibly dense statement by people who are supposed to be grownups?
Woah! That's exactly what I said. But not in so many words...

Offline rayleighscatter

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #502 on: 08/22/2014 12:01 am »
Have we all noticed that "measured in mass" is not actually a quote?

Offline Kabloona

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #503 on: 08/22/2014 12:02 am »
Also, "measured in mass" is a novel way of measuring design completion.

You see, that's the kind of thing that I loath about Big Corporations that make their living sucking on the government teat. "Novel" doesn't even come close. That is such a B.S. metric that I can't believe that anybody would stoop that low to actually say such a thing in public. It is incredibly imbecilic and simpleminded and reflects incredibly poorly on the management and company that fostered it. I really feel for the incredibly talented and hardworking men and women who work for that company and now have to shamefacedly face their friends, families and neighbors and try to explain to them what that "novel" metric actually means. How do you defend such an incredibly dense statement by people who are supposed to be grownups?

The sad fact is that the press and American public are so woefully scientifically/mathematically illiterate that no layperson will even ask that question.

Offline Kabloona

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #504 on: 08/22/2014 12:04 am »
Have we all noticed that "measured in mass" is not actually a quote?

"Mulholland said, measured in mass, the Boeing design for the cargo module was 96-percent complete at the time of the review, while its design for the crew module was 85-percent complete, two metrics that underscored the maturity of the design."

How is that not a quote?
« Last Edit: 08/22/2014 12:06 am by Kabloona »

Offline c3infinity

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #505 on: 08/22/2014 12:08 am »
Also, "measured in mass" is a novel way of measuring design completion.

You see, that's the kind of thing that I loath about Big Corporations that make their living sucking on the government teat. "Novel" doesn't even come close. That is such a B.S. metric that I can't believe that anybody would stoop that low to actually say such a thing in public. It is incredibly imbecilic and simpleminded and reflects incredibly poorly on the management and company that fostered it. I really feel for the incredibly talented and hardworking men and women who work for that company and now have to shamefacedly face their friends, families and neighbors and try to explain to them what that "novel" metric actually means. How do you defend such an incredibly dense statement by people who are supposed to be grownups?

Mulholland gave a one-sentence summary of how far along they are in the design process of a complex hardware development project. Measuring that by how much of the vehicle they have designed doesn't seem unreasonable. Would percent complete measured by part count be better? Either one is obviously going to be a gross simplification of the overall status of the design, but gets across his point to the journalist and the general public that they have a majority of the vehicle designed. I'm no project manager, but the ire this one statement has generated seems a bit much.

(Of course, the snarky comeback to his statement would be to ask how much their flight software weighs.)

Offline Kabloona

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #506 on: 08/22/2014 12:14 am »


Mulholland gave a one-sentence summary of how far along they are in the design process of a complex hardware development project. Measuring that by how much of the vehicle they have designed doesn't seem unreasonable. Would percent complete measured by part count be better? Either one is obviously going to be a gross simplification of the overall status of the design, but gets across his point to the journalist and the general public that they have a majority of the vehicle designed.

The "ire" is from engineers who have worked on similar projects and know that a metric of design completion based on mass is utterly absurd and designed only to give the false impression that they are much farther along than they really are.

Realistic metrics are percent complete by time/schedule/milestones, or percent complete by dollars spent versus total expected cost. Percent complete by mass is total BS for public/political consumption.
« Last Edit: 08/22/2014 12:20 am by Kabloona »

Offline rayleighscatter

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #507 on: 08/22/2014 12:23 am »

"Mulholland said, measured in mass, the Boeing design for the cargo module was 96-percent complete at the time of the review, while its design for the crew module was 85-percent complete, two metrics that underscored the maturity of the design."

How is that not a quote? Unless he didn't actually say what the reporter said he did.
It's not a quote because it's not in quotation marks.

The reporter took a larger statement and used their own scientific/mathematic literacy (and writing ability) to create a summation for their readers. It might very well be what Mulholland said, but I suppose I'm a bit cynical and unwilling to trust a single reporter on technical details.
« Last Edit: 08/22/2014 12:24 am by rayleighscatter »

Offline IslandPlaya

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #508 on: 08/22/2014 12:25 am »
Boeing engineers should get a job at SpaceX as soon as they can... They have been served notice already?

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #509 on: 08/22/2014 12:33 am »
The cargo version doesn't need LAS, resulting a less expensive propulsion module.

I disagree.  The advantage of using the same vehicle for cargo as you do for crew is that you don't lose valuable non-human "stuff" on a cargo run if there is an abort.  Sometimes that "stuff" can be unique and hard to replace, so the owners would much rather fly on a vehicle that could safeguard the "stuff" by returning it safely to Earth.
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Offline PahTo

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #510 on: 08/22/2014 12:34 am »

I've tried to keep clam about Boeing, but given the recent posts, will offer this front-row view of what I've seen around here, while remaining as neutral as possible (i.e. I don't work for Boeing).

Boeing changed dramatically, right about the time they acquired MD.  In reality, I think it was the other way around.  The corporate HQ moved to Chicago, then the commercial airplane division made huge demands of local and state govts here and elsewhere, and the military branch followed with the national govt (see tanker contracts) while at the same time making huge demands (and huge insults) on/to their workforce--the best people in the business.

The commercial airplane division has been the bread winner for the company from the start.  They have been the real risk takers and innovators.  From the Red Barn to the Dash-80/707 (google Tex Johnston and Lake Washington) to the 747 and the 777 (was at Everett for the initial rollout of that one!) Boeing has led the world in the best aircraft--period.
The efforts of the commercial side fed directly to the military side (see B-17, B-29, B-47, B-52).

That has all changed, and it is strange to watch the "leadership" continue to undo all that has made the company great (and a ton of money over the decades).  Recently the head of the commercial airplane division remarked that he looked forward to "making his workforce cower".  Lovely...

Online rcoppola

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #511 on: 08/22/2014 12:40 am »
Also, "measured in mass" is a novel way of measuring design completion.

You see, that's the kind of thing that I loath about Big Corporations that make their living sucking on the government teat. "Novel" doesn't even come close. That is such a B.S. metric that I can't believe that anybody would stoop that low to actually say such a thing in public. It is incredibly imbecilic and simpleminded and reflects incredibly poorly on the management and company that fostered it. I really feel for the incredibly talented and hardworking men and women who work for that company and now have to shamefacedly face their friends, families and neighbors and try to explain to them what that "novel" metric actually means. How do you defend such an incredibly dense statement by people who are supposed to be grownups?

The sad fact is that the press and American public are so woefully scientifically/mathematically illiterate that no layperson will even ask that question.
Well, then it's a good thing that neither the press or the public are deciding its' fate. NASA knows the real situation and I trust they will make the correct decision.

That statement didn't really raise my ire as much as the statement about being the only company out of the four to complete all milestones within the given period of performance. That's technically true but not all milestones are created equal.

The real question is, who's this PR for? Not NASA, they know what's really going on. The public? They just want to see something fly if they even pay that much attention in the first pace. Certain members of Congress? (Don't want to jump the shark again) So who is this message trying to influence? And why?
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Offline Kabloona

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #512 on: 08/22/2014 12:42 am »
It might very well be what Mulholland said, but I suppose I'm a bit cynical and unwilling to trust a single reporter on technical details.

And I'm a bit cynical and unwilling to trust a Boeing exec on technical details.  ;)

Offline Kabloona

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #513 on: 08/22/2014 12:49 am »

The real question is, who's this PR for? Not NASA, they know what's really going on. The public? They just want to see something fly if they even pay that much attention in the first pace. Certain members of Congress? (Don't want to jump the shark again) So who is this message trying to influence? And why?

You've seen Glengarry Glen Ross, right? ABC = Always Be Closing.

Yes, NASA knows what's really going on. But do scientifically illiterate Congresspeople who control the purse strings? No.

They're just working the refs, like an NBA game. Spin until you win.

Online rcoppola

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #514 on: 08/22/2014 12:50 am »
It might very well be what Mulholland said, but I suppose I'm a bit cynical and unwilling to trust a single reporter on technical details.

And I'm a bit cynical and unwilling to trust a Boeing exec on technical details.  ;)
I don't get that sense from Mr. Mulholland. And nothing he was quoted as saying was technically untrue. He knows what's coming down and he's doing his best to keep a positive public display. He's in a difficult situation. On some level, there will be those in the industry and out, who say, "Hey look, Big Boeing jut got its' arse kicked from little old SpaceX." That's totally not what I believe or would say but the optics of them losing, if and when they do, will not be pleasant. And Mr. Mulholland did the best he could with what he was given. Talk to Jim McNerney if you have complaints.
« Last Edit: 08/22/2014 12:51 am by rcoppola »
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Offline Kabloona

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #515 on: 08/22/2014 12:55 am »
I have no complaints. I believe what he said is entirely true. That isn't the question.

The question is whether "percent design complete by mass" is a realistic metric, and anyone who has designed aerospace systems comprising structure, propulsion, avionics, and software knows that it isn't.

Offline arachnitect

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #516 on: 08/22/2014 01:13 am »
ISTM the problem with CST-100 for COTS-2 is a small hatch and lack of an unpressurized cargo bay like Dragon's trunk.

Adding the latter would have to be a service module extension, and that would cover the circular solar panel at its  bottom. It would also add even more mass, perhaps requiring at least one more $RB.

Seems by using an expensive,   disposable service module instead of integrating it like DV2 & DC they've painted themselves into a corner.

My $0.02

I think a CST-100 derived freighter would compete much better against Orbital than it would SpaceX. Cygnus already has a smaller hatch diameter and no unpressurized cargo capacity, and as of COTS-1, is significantly more expensive than Dragon.

I'd think it's the other way around. Cygnus covers the bulky cargo and trash disposal. You are correct about the unpressurized cargo of course. Cygnus could go to a full sized CBM hatch if desired, CST can't.

Assuming their CRS2 proposal is a pretty straight CST-100 derivative (remove some systems and abort motors maybe windows, etc) I don't think it's really competitive at all sadly.

I hope they can at least use SEC.

The cargo version doesn't need LAS, resulting a less expensive propulsion module.

I disagree.  The advantage of using the same vehicle for cargo as you do for crew is that you don't lose valuable non-human "stuff" on a cargo run if there is an abort.  Sometimes that "stuff" can be unique and hard to replace, so the owners would much rather fly on a vehicle that could safeguard the "stuff" by returning it safely to Earth.

Most of the ISS cargo isn't inherently valuable. Food, clothes, experiments, etc. The theoretical value of any cargo saved by the LAS has to be traded against the performance you lost on every successful mission.

Offline baldusi

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #517 on: 08/22/2014 01:30 am »
What's the pressurized volume of a CST-100?

Offline Space Ghost 1962

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #518 on: 08/22/2014 01:49 am »
Yes, NASA knows what's really going on. But do scientifically illiterate Congresspeople who control the purse strings? No.

They're just working the refs, like an NBA game. Spin until you win.

Yes. This is almost like an admission of losing the race. As if gearing up for a different game...

A lot of the cost in commercial crew are around CREW related items not in a cargo vehicle. Perhaps they were competing with Dragon and not Dragon-2? Perhaps that still is the game. It certainly does not come across as confident.

They could offer more pressurized volume than Dragon as well as capabilities of HTV to boot, while retaining unpressurized cargo.

It makes sense in that CST-100 was piggybacked off of a failed OSP bid, so why not a CRS-2 bid based of a failed CCtCap one. Members of Congress would like to throw Boeing a "mulligan" here.

But that would assume that either OrbATK or SpaceX would "screw up" ... or be overcommitted. Both seem rather solid for CRS right now. What would be the "hidden advantage"?

While I have a rather low opinion of the minions of Congress, they don't like to become too obvious, for fear of painting targets on themselves ...

Offline oiorionsbelt

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Re: Boeing's CST-100 capsule updates & discussion THREAD 2
« Reply #519 on: 08/22/2014 01:51 am »
In 2014
Quote
Mulholland said, measured in mass, the Boeing design for the cargo module was 96-percent complete at the time of the review,


SpX cargo capsule first visited ISS 2012
Cygnus cargo capsule first visited  ISS 2013

?

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