Author Topic: SLS General Discussion Thread 2  (Read 395808 times)

Offline johnfwhitesell

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1800 on: 07/03/2018 05:17 AM »
You can use other rockets and small landers for logistics express delivery. In fact, this is exactly what NASA is doing in CLPS.

I think you are onto something here.  Express deliveries on smaller rockets could definitely help simplify the logistics by giving you more margin for error.  You could even make regularly scheduled express deliveries where every two months you send over whatever is needed most.  And if you committed to a block buy of express deliveries, say buying 12 launches each on two different systems, you could get a decent price and reliability.

Offline redliox

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1801 on: 07/03/2018 05:55 AM »
You can use other rockets and small landers for logistics express delivery. In fact, this is exactly what NASA is doing in CLPS.

I think you are onto something here.  Express deliveries on smaller rockets could definitely help simplify the logistics by giving you more margin for error.  You could even make regularly scheduled express deliveries where every two months you send over whatever is needed most. 

Right.  It makes sense to use whatever's convenient and cost-effective, at least ideally.  If you're going to send up a lot of supplies, I would presume it is because a smaller rocket can't reach the same distance and even then you're juggling delta-v around.

Regarding SLS in this regard, it would make more sense if it focused on sending up large modules or spacecraft while other launchers handle the logistics.
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Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1802 on: 07/03/2018 06:03 AM »
You can use other rockets and small landers for logistics express delivery. In fact, this is exactly what NASA is doing in CLPS.

I think you are onto something here.  Express deliveries on smaller rockets could definitely help simplify the logistics by giving you more margin for error.

"Smaller rockets" is a misnomer.

If the goal is to expand humanity out into space, then commodity transportation should become the standard that is used. Today that would likely be EELV-class launchers, since they would have the best $/kg ratio for moving mass to LEO. And once mass is in LEO, then we can use in-space assembly, reusable transportation systems, and fuel depots to move mass to it's final destination.

Frequent launches spread across multiple providers is the only way the market will be incentivized to reduce transportation costs significantly. SpaceX is already doing this, as is Blue Origin, but we will need a more diverse launch services industry in order to have a robust, reliable transportation system out to our Moon and beyond.

Quote
And if you committed to a block buy of express deliveries, say buying 12 launches each on two different systems, you could get a decent price and reliability.

Reliability should not change over time with the current generation of launch systems - they are already well into the high 90% range. And absent new rocket designs (i.e. reusability), it's not the number of launches that drives down cost but the frequency of launches - but even then current designs are near the bottom of their price points due to the way they were designed.

Regardless how we got to this point, the SLS is only needed for a limited set of requirements. So the question is whether there is enough demand for those requirements.

For instance, if the U.S. Government needed fuel depots in space, then commodity commercial launchers will be the least expensive option to provide that service. The same if the goal is to move as many people as possible to & from LEO, commercial services will be the least costly option - and they can provide more redundancy than the SLS can due to multiple launch systems.

The question then becomes how many times per decade, for decades to come, will the U.S. Government need to move large/bulky to space? Since that is the only real advantage that the SLS has over commercial rockets, the size of the payload and the weight of the payload.

But if the philosophy changes about how we approach building things in space, and in-space assembly becomes the norm like it was with the ISS, then the business case for large single-use rockets becomes less supportable.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1803 on: 07/03/2018 07:09 AM »
For the present and near future this right here is all anyone really needs to understand:

Quote
Getting back to the issues of the SLS development program.

Over the last year the best possible launch date has moved (slipped) 4 months over a period of time of 12 months. That is a slip rate of 1 month per quarter of development. The current best possible launch date in NASA's schedule (no schedule pad) is now Apr 2020. That is 21 months from now or 7 quarters. To calculate the possible schedule pad needed at this current slip rate you also have to contend with a compounding factor. As the best possible moves out more time is added and as more time to launch then the slip factor is applied to that also. This then gives a needed schedule pad of 10 months between the current best possible launch date of Apr 2020 and the high likelihood date of +10 months of Feb 2021.

Here is the rub. By the time this thing makes it's first flight, which will be un-manned and in-capable of doing an actual mission thanks to the program's own ridiculous timeline and requirements, it will be 'too late'.

What flies in 2020-2022 will not be an operational vehicle or "The real" SLS, it will be a one or at most a two off vehicle.

Meanwhile at the same time:
New Glenn will either be in service or nearing service
Vulcan will most likely be beginning service
ACES will be in service
FH block 5 will be in service with a USAF option for a raptor upper stage, unlikely though actual utilization may be.
BFR will be either close to service or entering service depending on technical challenges and/or any re-designs due things discovered in the test campaign. The test campaign is underway right now with the first BFS test vehicle either already under construction or due to start shortly.
The raptor engine exists right now, though scaling remains a mystery as details are tightly held in house at this time.
BE-4 is under going it's flight test validation program right now
Vulcan is under development right now and an exit path for DIV and Atlas V is in sight.
ACES honestly could enter service whenever ULA really want's it to.
NG, which now owns Orbital ATK, may well seek to develop a next gen EELV as well. I would be shocked if they don't try to get in on this and they have the capital available for a pretty aggressive effort if they choose to exert it. 

Meanwhile the "not the real SLS" SLS test vehicle has yet to even be fully constructed. Yet all of the above has been accomplished for less and in less time.

This is what I mean when I say it's a joke, this literally is a joke. It is a joke to think SLS provides anything you actually will need, or even will ever be capable or providing anything needed, its a joke to think the program is doing okay, and its a joke to continue this farce.

For the same cost as the  SLS program we could bid launches on all of the aforementioned and build mission hardware for actual missions to somewhere VERY SOON as opposed to nowhere never (2050+). There is no reason to continue this even a month longer other than politics pure and simple.
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Offline LaunchedIn68

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1804 on: 07/03/2018 07:09 PM »
For the present and near future this right here is all anyone really needs to understand:

Quote
Getting back to the issues of the SLS development program.

Over the last year the best possible launch date has moved (slipped) 4 months over a period of time of 12 months. That is a slip rate of 1 month per quarter of development. The current best possible launch date in NASA's schedule (no schedule pad) is now Apr 2020. That is 21 months from now or 7 quarters. To calculate the possible schedule pad needed at this current slip rate you also have to contend with a compounding factor. As the best possible moves out more time is added and as more time to launch then the slip factor is applied to that also. This then gives a needed schedule pad of 10 months between the current best possible launch date of Apr 2020 and the high likelihood date of +10 months of Feb 2021.

Here is the rub. By the time this thing makes it's first flight, which will be un-manned and in-capable of doing an actual mission thanks to the program's own ridiculous timeline and requirements, it will be 'too late'.

What flies in 2020-2022 will not be an operational vehicle or "The real" SLS, it will be a one or at most a two off vehicle.

Meanwhile at the same time:
New Glenn will either be in service or nearing service
Vulcan will most likely be beginning service
ACES will be in service
FH block 5 will be in service with a USAF option for a raptor upper stage, unlikely though actual utilization may be.
BFR will be either close to service or entering service depending on technical challenges and/or any re-designs due things discovered in the test campaign. The test campaign is underway right now with the first BFS test vehicle either already under construction or due to start shortly.
The raptor engine exists right now, though scaling remains a mystery as details are tightly held in house at this time.
BE-4 is under going it's flight test validation program right now

WILL Be...???  If this was 2015 I might agree with you, but we are halfway through 2018. 

BFR "entering service"?  ??? Don't expect it till 2028 or 2030 at best.  It will be a major development effort.  Look how long we waited for FH, and it has flown ONCE!  Have we seen the Raptor yet?  Is it being run on the test stands at 100% yet?

NG?  I don't expect it to fly before 2025.  Maybe 2022 for some test flights..maybe.  BE4 hasn't been run at full throttle yet.  We'll see it on the test stands in 2020 I think, clustered and being run at 100%+.

Maybe Vulcan and BE4 in 2022.  Why?  Aren't there sufficient RD-180's , AV and DIVH in the pipeline?  No pressure.  My point is none of the things you mentioned are a given.  Especially in the timeline mentioned.  Anything can happen.  If anything, SLS is further along than any of the items you mentioned.
« Last Edit: 07/03/2018 07:11 PM by LaunchedIn68 »
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Offline envy887

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1805 on: 07/03/2018 07:56 PM »
For the present and near future this right here is all anyone really needs to understand:

Quote
Getting back to the issues of the SLS development program.

Over the last year the best possible launch date has moved (slipped) 4 months over a period of time of 12 months. That is a slip rate of 1 month per quarter of development. The current best possible launch date in NASA's schedule (no schedule pad) is now Apr 2020. That is 21 months from now or 7 quarters. To calculate the possible schedule pad needed at this current slip rate you also have to contend with a compounding factor. As the best possible moves out more time is added and as more time to launch then the slip factor is applied to that also. This then gives a needed schedule pad of 10 months between the current best possible launch date of Apr 2020 and the high likelihood date of +10 months of Feb 2021.

Here is the rub. By the time this thing makes it's first flight, which will be un-manned and in-capable of doing an actual mission thanks to the program's own ridiculous timeline and requirements, it will be 'too late'.

What flies in 2020-2022 will not be an operational vehicle or "The real" SLS, it will be a one or at most a two off vehicle.

Meanwhile at the same time:
New Glenn will either be in service or nearing service
Vulcan will most likely be beginning service
ACES will be in service
FH block 5 will be in service with a USAF option for a raptor upper stage, unlikely though actual utilization may be.
BFR will be either close to service or entering service depending on technical challenges and/or any re-designs due things discovered in the test campaign. The test campaign is underway right now with the first BFS test vehicle either already under construction or due to start shortly.
The raptor engine exists right now, though scaling remains a mystery as details are tightly held in house at this time.
BE-4 is under going it's flight test validation program right now

WILL Be...???  If this was 2015 I might agree with you, but we are halfway through 2018. 

BFR "entering service"?  ??? Don't expect it till 2028 or 2030 at best.  It will be a major development effort.  Look how long we waited for FH, and it has flown ONCE!  Have we seen the Raptor yet?  Is it being run on the test stands at 100% yet?

NG?  I don't expect it to fly before 2025.  Maybe 2022 for some test flights..maybe.  BE4 hasn't been run at full throttle yet.  We'll see it on the test stands in 2020 I think, clustered and being run at 100%+.

Maybe Vulcan and BE4 in 2022.  Why?  Aren't there sufficient RD-180's , AV and DIVH in the pipeline?  No pressure.  My point is none of the things you mentioned are a given.  Especially in the timeline mentioned.  Anything can happen.  If anything, SLS is further along than any of the items you mentioned.

SLS Block 1B is not further along than any of those. The SLS that will fly in 2020 (more likely 2021) will only slightly more capable than Falcon Heavy and will have only a slightly larger fairing. The EUS and 8 meter and 10 meter fairings needed to complete Block 1B (and often cited as the reasons to continue developing SLS) are not yet fully designed, never mind built or tested, and won't be ready to fly before 2024.

Vulcan and New Glenn appear on track for 2020 debuts, although ACES in unlikely to fly before Block 1B. The engine development status is not particularly indicative of time to first launch, since structures and facilities, and not the engines, appear to be more often the critical path. And FH isn't a particularly flattering comparison, as its development started at the same time as SLS, but it flew at least 2 years earlier despite several major redesigns. BFR will undoubtedly have similar major redesigns, but like F9 (and unlike FH) the time-consuming ones will probably happen after the first orbital flights.

Offline meberbs

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1806 on: 07/03/2018 07:59 PM »
...in 2020-2022...

ACES will be in service
FH block 5 will be in service with a USAF option for a raptor upper stage, unlikely though actual utilization may be.
ACES hopefully will be in serious development by then, but today they are just at the concept stage, and everything I have heard indicates they are unlikely to start moving past that point until Vulcan/Centuar V is on the pad. (Problem is their parent companies rather than current leadership from what I can tell.)
Raptor upper stage would not exist unless problems happen with BFR. The Air Force contract is just about the engine, and only needs the "raptor upper stage" as a possibility, not an intended future.

BFR "entering service"?  ??? Don't expect it till 2028 or 2030 at best.  It will be a major development effort.  Look how long we waited for FH, and it has flown ONCE!  Have we seen the Raptor yet?  Is it being run on the test stands at 100% yet?
How many times FH has flown so far has a lot to do with how much F9 capability increases have limited the need for FH for current missions. It hasn't even been 10 years since the first successful Falcon 1 launch, so saying BFR won't launch until 2028 is not consistent with how quickly Falcon Heavy was developed. BFR today is further along than FH in 2008. Besides, FH was basically a back burner program needed "eventually." BFR will be the majority of all SpaceX R&D going forward, with a priority of ASAP.

We have seen Raptor, go look up the video. They are still in the process of up-sizing it, but just like Merlin, it will be upgraded throughout its life. The first flight version will not be run at the eventual 100% level.

NG?  I don't expect it to fly before 2025.  Maybe 2022 for some test flights..maybe.  BE4 hasn't been run at full throttle yet.  We'll see it on the test stands in 2020 I think, clustered and being run at 100%+.
This statement doesn't even make sense. BE-4 is on the test stand now. A "cluster of BE-4s" would be a rocket on the pad. (no McGregor-like site for Blue, they will static fire at their pad only) From that point, something would have to explode for the launch to not be within 1 year.

Maybe Vulcan and BE4 in 2022.  Why?  Aren't there sufficient RD-180's , AV and DIVH in the pipeline?  No pressure.  My point is none of the things you mentioned are a given.  Especially in the timeline mentioned.  Anything can happen.  If anything, SLS is further along than any of the items you mentioned.
You just were making up random delays for all of those other rockets. SLS has a history of consistently being delayed, and honestly I will be somewhat surprised if first launch is before 2022 at this point. Probably 2 years between first and second launch (and the second launch would be the first non-test payload). SLS is not a given either, and is the worst performance for its cost out of any of them. All of the other projects discussed are moving forward with plans that have them leapfrog past SLS within 1-2 years.

Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1807 on: 07/04/2018 05:00 AM »
For the present and near future this right here is all anyone really needs to understand:

Quote
Getting back to the issues of the SLS development program.

Over the last year the best possible launch date has moved (slipped) 4 months over a period of time of 12 months. That is a slip rate of 1 month per quarter of development. The current best possible launch date in NASA's schedule (no schedule pad) is now Apr 2020. That is 21 months from now or 7 quarters. To calculate the possible schedule pad needed at this current slip rate you also have to contend with a compounding factor. As the best possible moves out more time is added and as more time to launch then the slip factor is applied to that also. This then gives a needed schedule pad of 10 months between the current best possible launch date of Apr 2020 and the high likelihood date of +10 months of Feb 2021.

Here is the rub. By the time this thing makes it's first flight, which will be un-manned and in-capable of doing an actual mission thanks to the program's own ridiculous timeline and requirements, it will be 'too late'.

What flies in 2020-2022 will not be an operational vehicle or "The real" SLS, it will be a one or at most a two off vehicle.

Meanwhile at the same time:
New Glenn will either be in service or nearing service
Vulcan will most likely be beginning service
ACES will be in service
FH block 5 will be in service with a USAF option for a raptor upper stage, unlikely though actual utilization may be.
BFR will be either close to service or entering service depending on technical challenges and/or any re-designs due things discovered in the test campaign. The test campaign is underway right now with the first BFS test vehicle either already under construction or due to start shortly.
The raptor engine exists right now, though scaling remains a mystery as details are tightly held in house at this time.
BE-4 is under going it's flight test validation program right now

WILL Be...???  If this was 2015 I might agree with you, but we are halfway through 2018. 

BFR "entering service"?  ??? Don't expect it till 2028 or 2030 at best.  It will be a major development effort.  Look how long we waited for FH, and it has flown ONCE!  Have we seen the Raptor yet?  Is it being run on the test stands at 100% yet?

NG?  I don't expect it to fly before 2025.  Maybe 2022 for some test flights..maybe.  BE4 hasn't been run at full throttle yet.  We'll see it on the test stands in 2020 I think, clustered and being run at 100%+.

Maybe Vulcan and BE4 in 2022.  Why?  Aren't there sufficient RD-180's , AV and DIVH in the pipeline?  No pressure.  My point is none of the things you mentioned are a given.  Especially in the timeline mentioned.  Anything can happen.  If anything, SLS is further along than any of the items you mentioned.

1. No there are not sufficient RD-180s. See Russia Sanctions and magnitsky act fallout circa 2013.
2. You are totally making up numbers.

You do realize flight hardware already exists for 98% of what I listed right? The other 2% is based on existing technology, there is no major breakthroughs required to build any of it.

This post doesn't warrant any further response. The amount of pro-SLS astroturfing is becoming abhorrent. This is not the only place I have been seeing it lately either, it would seem to me someone at Boeing is waging a social media campaign to try and minimize the commercial spaceflight sector (ironic) and play up SLS. This started roughly three months ago right around the time major schedule failures started happening again.

Just a coincidence I am sure.

Maybe what we need to do is start an advocacy campaign via the GOP to call on Mr. Trump to direct Administrator Bridenstine to investigate killing SLS in FY2020 or sooner if possible. Maybe more direct action right now is needed instead of debate.

This CXP style nonsense has to stop, if the contractor (Boeing) and/or the management are this out of control they will find they are going to have a fight on their hands soon. Really hoping someone says full stop on this nonsense before it reaches that point, killing the stick was hard enough.
« Last Edit: 07/04/2018 05:01 AM by FinalFrontier »
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Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1808 on: 07/04/2018 05:11 AM »
Quote
ACES hopefully will be in serious development by then, but today they are just at the concept stage, and everything I have heard indicates they are unlikely to start moving past that point until Vulcan/Centuar V is on the pad. (Problem is their parent companies rather than current leadership from what I can tell.)
Raptor upper stage would not exist unless problems happen with BFR. The Air Force contract is just about the engine, and only needs the "raptor upper stage" as a possibility, not an intended future.

There are two major reasons why. ACES could have been built years ago there is, again, no major break-through or real 'development' program needed to build it. ULA could have built it in 2008.

Reason number one. While Atlas V has it's day's number, it behooves ULA to fly out the remaining stock. Same goes for the current version of centaur. There is no reason to run hurry up phasing this out only to wind up with left over LV's at the end, you are better off flying out the program so you don't waste money. The same goes for Delta IV. However, commercial pressure is mounting every year that goes by. It is the reason why a common vehicle family and a new vehicle program were started to begin with, it is ULA's response to this pressure and the inherent problems of getting engines from Russia in an era where Russia is everyone's worst enemy again.

Reason number two is the SLS program. ULA proposed flexible path EELV with ACES prior to, during, and after Aug Com. We know how things turned out. Boeing, which is one half of ULA, has the contracts for SLS, where-as Lockheed has the contracts for Orion. There is no reason, therefore, for ULA to hurry up or rapidly introduce ACES or a new vehicle family+ACES given the fact that they are getting paid for SLS+Orion since that is the current program. They would only be hurting themselves if they sped up IOC and shortened the remaining service life of DIV and Atlas V.

But again, commercial pressure is a reality they are having confront more and more. I expect you will ultimately see Vulcan and ACES sooner rather than later as a result. The alternative would be insolvency and they are not stupid enough to risk that.

You will see these vehicles sooner than you think or you will see a world without SLS and without ULA, which is not likely.
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Online Chris Bergin

Re: SLS General Discussion Thread 2
« Reply #1809 on: 07/04/2018 04:54 PM »
Ok you guys are being boring and wandering. I'm leaving the posts on to show what I mean. See above.

As warned, new thread time and it'll be posts deleted if it continues.

New thread (was needed as this one is a long thread)
https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=45947.0
« Last Edit: 07/04/2018 04:58 PM by Chris Bergin »

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