Author Topic: ESA/Roscomos - ExoMars 2020 (Rover + Surface Platform) - updates  (Read 41101 times)

Online Dalhousie

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Re: drones (or whatever you call them)


I hope it does get onto the rover as it sounds an interesting idea.

There's a time and a place to be adding capabilities and that is during the instrument selection process. If the budgets had been bigger, scientists would have proposed adding more instruments and the project could have traded the value of those versus the value of adding a drone. Once all that has been done, nothing else should be added. Adding capabilities in an undisciplined way is one of the leading causes of cost overruns.

A drone (or whatever) might not be such a bad idea if it could be built from off the shelf components. As temperatures drop, material properties change. Steels and rubbers become brittle, lubricants freeze and entire classes of engineering materials become unusable. Off the shelf components are designed for earth surface temperatures, which are rarely colder than -20 to - 40 Celsius. Mars gets a lot colder than that. I read somewhere that Li-ion batteries don't like the cold, and those are critical to consumer drone technology.

You might try to keep the drone in a heated hangar, but now you require an energy budget to keep the hangar warm. Electricity that goes to heat the hanger means less electricity available to move the rover.

You already have overhead imagery from Hi-rise. Does a drone really add enough to that to be worth the cost.?

It should add cm scale resolution and oblique views, both will be very useful.  Are they worth the cost?  Depends what the cost is.  Any ideas?

But this is the ExoMars thread not the 2020 rover.  So we should discuss this elsewhere.....
« Last Edit: 05/07/2016 09:28 PM by Dalhousie »
"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

Offline as58

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JWST is passively cooled, so I wouldn't call it cryogenic (Spitzer, on the other hand, was cryogenic during its primary mission). As far as I know the goal was always to make the optics as cold as practicable in a passively cooled telescope.

This is another example of materials issues caused by low temperatures. A good material to build optical systems out of is silicon carbide. That doesn't work at low temperatures, which forces both JWST and Spitzer to use beryllium. Beryllium is toxic and always seems to be very costly. I definitely view JWST as cryogenic, because it operates at temperatures low enough to require special materials. If they had avoided requirements creep they could have stayed with silicon carbide and JWST would have cost a lot less.

Akari and Herschel had SiC mirrors, so low temperature (down to 6 K for Akari) doesn't seem to be a show stopper. Maybe technology for manufacturing large SiC mirrors was not mature enough at the time JWST design was chosen.

I guess this, too, is a discussion that should take place in another thread...

Offline baldusi

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Space science flagships in general have a way of growing in cost and ambition. As a replacement for Hubble, the science community originally asked for a 4m diameter mirror which was cool but not cryogenic. Somehow that morphed into the 6.5m deployable cryogenic monster we have today. At the present, Europa Clipper seems to be in the process of gaining a lander, while Mars 2020 has added a drone.

JWST is passively cooled, so I wouldn't call it cryogenic (Spitzer, on the other hand, was cryogenic during its primary mission). As far as I know the goal was always to make the optics as cold as practicable in a passively cooled telescope.
If JWST is passively cooled, what is the cryocooler for? It has been one of the technological banes of the project. And they intend to work one instrument at 8K or so.

Offline Arcas

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Space science flagships in general have a way of growing in cost and ambition. As a replacement for Hubble, the science community originally asked for a 4m diameter mirror which was cool but not cryogenic. Somehow that morphed into the 6.5m deployable cryogenic monster we have today. At the present, Europa Clipper seems to be in the process of gaining a lander, while Mars 2020 has added a drone.

JWST is passively cooled, so I wouldn't call it cryogenic (Spitzer, on the other hand, was cryogenic during its primary mission). As far as I know the goal was always to make the optics as cold as practicable in a passively cooled telescope.
If JWST is passively cooled, what is the cryocooler for? It has been one of the technological banes of the project. And they intend to work one instrument at 8K or so.
Passive, as in doesn't consume liquid helium and die in a year
The risk I took was calculated, but boy am I bad at math.

Offline as58

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Space science flagships in general have a way of growing in cost and ambition. As a replacement for Hubble, the science community originally asked for a 4m diameter mirror which was cool but not cryogenic. Somehow that morphed into the 6.5m deployable cryogenic monster we have today. At the present, Europa Clipper seems to be in the process of gaining a lander, while Mars 2020 has added a drone.

JWST is passively cooled, so I wouldn't call it cryogenic (Spitzer, on the other hand, was cryogenic during its primary mission). As far as I know the goal was always to make the optics as cold as practicable in a passively cooled telescope.
If JWST is passively cooled, what is the cryocooler for? It has been one of the technological banes of the project. And they intend to work one instrument at 8K or so.

I meant that the telescope optics are cooled radiatively, not with liquid helium or something like that. It's true that MIRI needs a cryocooler.

Offline Star One

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Europe’s ExoMars rover in 'last chance saloon'

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-36251642

Offline savuporo

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Europe’s ExoMars rover in 'last chance saloon'

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-36251642

Woerner is clearly wagging a finger at someone. Who ?

Quote
But Mr Woerner could not hide his irritation at the constantly rising price Esa was being asked to pay.

"The one who is the source of the delays - we should be very carefully looking at whether they are also eligible to get some extra money, because they are the reason we are delayed," he said.

"From my point of view it's very strange if you say, 'OK, I do it later, and therefore I get more money'."
Orion - the first and only manned not-too-deep-space craft

Offline Sam Ho

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SpaceNews coverage of Woerner's comments:

http://spacenews.com/esa-chief-says-funding-for-delayed-exomars-rover-mission-remains-uncertain/

Quote
We will have a discussion with the main member states involved with the program. Then we’ll see how we can manage, and whether we can manage. I am not saying we can manage it. There are cost increases with the delay and there were cost increases from a technical point of view. Again, I don’t fully understand it after all the discussions we had in the past. I thought we were finished with the numbers. Now we have new numbers and this does not make me happy.

Offline Blackstar

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Man, that's a great slogan. I hope they paint it on the side of the rover: "The Last Chance Saloon."


Offline Space Ghost 1962

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Man, that's a great slogan. I hope they paint it on the side of the rover: "The Last Chance Saloon."
... as it sits in a museum instead of on the surface of Mars ... alongside "X billion euro and all I got was this stupid rover".

Offline Blackstar

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"But Mr Woerner could not hide his irritation at the constantly rising price Esa was being asked to pay.

"The one who is the source of the delays - we should be very carefully looking at whether they are also eligible to get some extra money, because they are the reason we are delayed," he said.

"From my point of view it's very strange if you say, 'OK, I do it later, and therefore I get more money'."


So this is interesting and raises some management issues. Good program management involves a bunch of things, including monitoring what is happening, what the problem areas are, and allocating resources as needed, maybe even making personnel changes. One foot on the gas, one foot on the brakes, constantly checking the mirrors and the road, to toss in a driving analogy.

What Woerner's comments imply is that he's not sure that this was just poor management but may have been a case of somebody delaying to miss the launch window and then get an extra two years of pay. That's an eye-raising allegation.

I remember many years ago hearing a senior NASA science official discuss, after the fact, the delays involving MSL/Curiosity that caused it to miss its 2009 launch window and slip to 2011. That resulted in an over $400 million cost hit to the program, most of which was standing army cost. (As an aside, $400+ million was the equivalent of a Mars Scout or Discovery mission, so that delay cost NASA another space mission.)

The NASA official thought that the top-level management on Curiosity had been deficient. What I remember him saying was that at some point around 2008 JPL should have realized that they were going to miss the 2009 launch window and then ramped-down their work and come up with a lower spending level to reach 2011. Instead, apparently senior leadership at HQ had encouraged them to spend like crazy to try and make the 2009 window, even though at some point it should have been obvious that they would miss it. This official may have been wrong, or right. But it was an interesting insight into how such projects get managed and overseen at the top level.

So ExoMars might have had similar issues.



Offline baldusi

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I read about Woerner's statement more like what economist critique about cost-plus contracting. All the incentives are to balloon costs.

Offline bolun

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http://www.esa.int/spaceinimages/Images/2016/05/Lego_ExoMars_model

Image credit: ESA–G. Porter

Lego ExoMars model

Offline Star One

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European Space Agency still backing Mars rover project

Quote
Meeting in Paris, delegations agreed to put the project, which has experienced serial delays, on to a fresh schedule.

They also injected an immediate extra sum of €77m (£59m), which will keep the ExoMars robot in development while a full and final solution to its financial problems is sought.

The aim is to have all matters resolved for a meeting of ministers in December.

Dr David Parker is the agency's director of human spaceflight and robotic exploration.

He told BBC News: "The challenges were set out to member states, and in the council meeting [on Wednesday] they were asked the fundamental questions: how important is this project; do you want to continue? And the very, very clear message came back that this remains a high priority for scientific and technological reasons."

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-36540259

Offline redliox

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Not to turn this into a SpaceX thread, but assuming Russia has issues that ESA can't stand for, what about stuffing their rover into a red dragon?
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Offline rocx

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Not to turn this into a SpaceX thread, but assuming Russia has issues that ESA can't stand for, what about stuffing their rover into a red dragon?

They can't get it out. It's not designed with an off-ramp. This question has been asked too many times on this forum, and I really think it should rest until there is any indication SpaceX is planning any rover.
Any day with a rocket landing is a fantastic day.

Offline redliox

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Not to turn this into a SpaceX thread, but assuming Russia has issues that ESA can't stand for, what about stuffing their rover into a red dragon?

They can't get it out. It's not designed with an off-ramp. This question has been asked too many times on this forum, and I really think it should rest until there is any indication SpaceX is planning any rover.

In other words it's Russia or NASA if not bust.
"Let the trails lead where they may, I will follow."
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Offline Stan Black

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Roskosmos has issued two tenders for Proton-M rockets. Both are for 2018 at 1,633,347,620 ruble a piece. One is for Exomars № 2.
http://www.zakupki.gov.ru/epz/order/notice/ok44/view/common-info.html?regNumber=0995000000216000036
« Last Edit: 07/25/2016 09:05 PM by Stan Black »

Online Chris Bergin

Schiaparelli landing data to aid ExoMars 2020 rover - by Chris Gebhardt:
https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2016/10/schiaparelli-landing-data-exomars-2020-rover/

Offline Alpha_Centauri

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Fully funded;
https://www.twitter.com/BBCAmos/status/804665280614060032
https://www.twitter.com/BBCAmos/status/804685097844740096

ESA share of ~100mEuro taken from mandatory science budget. Current missions safe but future CV missions may be delayed.
« Last Edit: 12/02/2016 01:40 PM by Alpha_Centauri »

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