Author Topic: Lori Garverís op ed piece...  (Read 25195 times)

Offline Arb

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #160 on: 02/22/2018 06:07 PM »
On top of all of this what Mrs. Garver is conveniently leaving out here is that she and the other Obama era airheads cancelled CXP and had literally no plan for what to do next. They did not offer a commercial BEO plan, they did not offer even a destination or a timeline, their plan and president Obama's plan was literally to cancel the primary mandate of NASA along with the failed LV program that was CXP and leave no plan.

That "no plan" notion is not correct.

Simplifying a bit and working from memory, the Garver/Obama plan was to let the COTS program run it's course (including COTS-D) and, in parallel, have NASA undertake technology development programs for five (IIRC) years. Then, towards the end of the five years, take a look at how things lay to see if a realistic and affordable exploration goal could be set using commercial launch and thus avoid the need for a government funded/developed HLV.

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Online clongton

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #161 on: 02/22/2018 06:48 PM »
They've been repeating this exercise for over 30 years with nothing to show for it, and the powers that be have failed to conclude that maybe Shuttle-derived isn't the right way to go about developing an affordable heavy-lift launcher.

Perhaps the conclusion is that it actually is the right way to go if your goal is not to actually go anywhere but instead to keep thousands of people employed for decades.
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Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #162 on: 02/23/2018 06:06 AM »
On top of all of this what Mrs. Garver is conveniently leaving out here is that she and the other Obama era airheads cancelled CXP and had literally no plan for what to do next. They did not offer a commercial BEO plan, they did not offer even a destination or a timeline, their plan and president Obama's plan was literally to cancel the primary mandate of NASA along with the failed LV program that was CXP and leave no plan.

Emphasis mine.
And that would have been bad for what reason exactly?

After Apollo the next plan was Mars. Then later is was the Moon. Then it went back to Mars. Then back to the Moon. And then back again to Mars. And now, it is back to the Moon.

For over 45 years "the plan" has been going back-and-forth between some place we have been and some place we haven't been (yet).

Having plans that don't actually get us anywhere OR having no plan are equally bad because the end-result is exactly the same.

So I ask you again: why exactly was Obama-not-having-a-plan bad?
Because if you find it necessary to single-out Obama over this you will have to single-out Nixon, Reagon, Bush Sr., Clinton, Bush Jr. and Trump as well.
This is a fair point considering the failures thus far. However, what most likely would have happened if Congress had simply said 'screw it' and gone along with this is that NASA would have seen a 30 to 40% cut in funding in FY 2011. Maybe much more.

There is every chance the commercial program and ISS would have also received cuts since at this point, since NASA would basically be a research agency not an exploration agency anymore. That was essentially what was being proposed. Without the political will to support the agency there would be drastically less funding to support, right away, including what was at the time the funding for a nascent commercial program.

I don't disagree with you what I am saying here is that SLS was a direct response to the Obama non-plan, which was no different than the last 45 years of failed plans and non-plans, and failed programs.
Few people take BFR seriously, though. And launching crew on FH around the Moon would steal SLS's thunder dramatically. So in the short term, that decision not to crew rate on FH does help SLS. Long-term: I agree. It makes BFR more likely sooner.

Emphasis mine.
Few people took FH seriously back in 2011. Guess what happened...

Few people took SpaceX seriously back in 2011.
(do I detect a pattern here?)
Two of the rockets exploded resulting in LOM. Both were related to poor understanding of COPVs. 

Few people took seriously for a reason SpaceX is not risk free or perfect, but they are getting better as they go along.

at some point IMO it's just going to get flat out cancelled

to be replaced with a carbon copy?

No. At that point NASA will never again build another launch vehicle. From then on NASA will just let contracts for launch services to the commercial suppliers. Then, finally, it can focus on the mission spacecraft - not the launch vehicles. In today's world there is no more need for a government owned and operated launch vehicle. The death of SLS will seal that deal.

If NASA doesn't die with SLS.

Big if right there, this is the elephant in the room. You are talking about killing the successor to CXP and STS and still having a fully funded real agency afterwards. I think we all want to see that but nobody knows how to actually make that happen. You also have to have a Congress that will do what makes sense, when is the last time you can recall we had that?
« Last Edit: 02/23/2018 06:19 AM by FinalFrontier »
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Offline FinalFrontier

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #163 on: 02/23/2018 06:43 AM »
Quote
woods170
To them Falcon 1 was experimental technology that nearly had them bankrupt. But they bet the future of SpaceX on it anyway.
[/quote]

Because it was the only LV they had and they had no other choice. Elon did not enjoy doing it this way either, nobody did, and does not wish to repeat this, you should see what he has said about it.

They are betting their future on BFR, in the long term. But as Elon and shotwell have both said they plan to produce a hefty extra reserve of Falcon 9 block 5 parts, and F9 block 5 is intended for robust reuse and many many flights per core. The evidence is in their actions, they are doing this for a reason. If they thought BFR was going to be an instantaneous solution that would work right out of the gate they would not bother doing this. It will be a phased introduction of capability.

Quote
Falcon 9 and FH are there to earn money to pay for BFR development and have served as test-beds for development of technologies required by BFR. They are neither an insurance policy, nor a back-up

You answered your own statement, then contradicted it. They are both an insurance policy and a test bed for BFR technologies, as well as the primary income earner until such time as BFR is fully through IOC. If they had no other purposes there would be no point in doing block 5 or mass producing block 5 components. BFR has to go through a robust testing program before it will truly be flying well enough and often enough to take over the role of it's predecessors. Elon Musk himself has confirmed this, this is the reason why at the same time they will be producing block 5 components they will also be producing the first BFS and testing it in a similar fashion to the F9r Dev and grasshopper programs, to be followed by a test program for the booster with lessons learned. They are doing this the same way they built up to the current generation of Falcon vehicles, which is exaclty the right way to do it. The difference is that now they have a working vehicle family to fall back on if this thing stutters or struggles along the way, instead of having nothing to fall back on as they did before with Falcon 1 and early Falcon 9. This is a far better position to be in both technically and financially and SpaceX knows it, this is literally the reason F9 Block 5 is a thing.

Quote
The minute BFR flies successfully, F9 and FH will be terminated. No drawn-out transition phase.
This contradicts SpaceX's own statements as well as their test program plan and would mean there is no commercial reason for mass production of F9 v 5, only a small number of cores, which again contradicts their own statements thus far. So no, this will not happen. It will be tested multiple times and there will be a transition phase exactly like there was for F 9 1.0 to F9's that can land, to F9's that can be reused, to now, F9 Block 5 . This is how iterative design works.

The main difference will be the timeline. BFR has the potential to accomplish this a great deal faster than the Falcon vehicle family due to heritage technology and lessons learned. A safe estimate from first flight to true IOC might be 3 years, 4 years for the moment F9 block 5 flys the last time from the time BFR first accomplishes a full flight.

SpaceX will NOT be maintaining dual production and manufacturing lines. That is non economical and that is what you are referring to. However they have stated that prior to killing Falcon 9 family production they will be stockpiling a lot of vehicles. This makes alot more sense.

Quote
IMO you are wrong on that final conclusion. See switch from Falcon 1 to Falcon 9.
This was driven out of necessity. At that time the company was saved by the award of NASA contracts, which required the use of the Falcon 9 vehicle, Falcon 1 did not have the capability to meet the requirements of these contracts. Since they literally as a matter of survival had to develop Falcon 9 immediately on proving the main engine on Falcon 1, it only made natural sense not to continue producing Falcon 1 with limited resources and simply cluster the lighter payloads on the new rocket.

This was also extremely hard to do and extremely risky but SpaceX pulled it off. Why duplicate the risk un-necessarily for a third time, how many times do you want to literally risk losing the whole platform? They don't need to and therefore they won't, and they have said as much.



« Last Edit: 02/23/2018 06:51 AM by FinalFrontier »
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Offline Political Hack Wannabe

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #164 on: 02/27/2018 12:35 PM »
This is a fair point considering the failures thus far. However, what most likely would have happened if Congress had simply said 'screw it' and gone along with this is that NASA would have seen a 30 to 40% cut in funding in FY 2011. Maybe much more.

There is every chance the commercial program and ISS would have also received cuts since at this point, since NASA would basically be a research agency not an exploration agency anymore. That was essentially what was being proposed. Without the political will to support the agency there would be drastically less funding to support, right away, including what was at the time the funding for a nascent commercial program.

2 points I'd like to ask here

1)  Why assume that it would get a 30-40% cut?  What is the basis for this?  There wasn't a broader pushback from the rest of the world.  Only the space world.  So why would the broader world have cut it by 30-40%?
2)  Why is doing the research to set up for the exploration not make it an exploration agency? 


If NASA doesn't die with SLS.

Big if right there, this is the elephant in the room. You are talking about killing the successor to CXP and STS and still having a fully funded real agency afterwards. I think we all want to see that but nobody knows how to actually make that happen. You also have to have a Congress that will do what makes sense, when is the last time you can recall we had that?

A key question, which I've asked (and then got loudly yelled at for asking) is at what point does NASA achieve success, and is no longer needed?  Yes, this sounds weird, and yes, I've been accused of being a NASA hater for asking this, but you really do have to ask what is our "win" scenario.  Because we don't have that right now, and we are just in a holding action. 
It's not democrats vs republicans, it's reality vs innumerate space cadet fantasy.

Offline Kansan52

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #165 on: 02/27/2018 02:13 PM »
I hadn't considered success for NASA meant NASA had to end. For me, NASA has succeeded multiple times and has gone on to more success. And can continue to do so.

Now, a NASA after SLS while retaining its budget, that would mean (to me) finding work by the SLS contractors on payloads on other vehicles.

Offline Political Hack Wannabe

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #166 on: 02/27/2018 02:53 PM »
I hadn't considered success for NASA meant NASA had to end. For me, NASA has succeeded multiple times and has gone on to more success. And can continue to do so.

Now, a NASA after SLS while retaining its budget, that would mean (to me) finding work by the SLS contractors on payloads on other vehicles.
First, a point of success.  I didn't define success intentionally, because there isn't a universal definition. However, from my perspective, lets look down the road 50 years - suppose we have a world that looks like cis-lunar 1000, or 2001: A Space Odyssey, or something like that, where we have relatively cheap access, and we have lots of people in space, and so forth.  In a world like that, does NASA continue to exist?   I think that is a fair question that the space community had better be prepared to answer, and give a reason as to whether it should exist or not, and why.  And if it does continue to exist, how would it need to change? 

So, when I say success, I don't mean "we've put a person on the moon" or "we've fixed Hubble."  I mean, we've fundamentally altered our relationship with space so that it looks like all of our dreams.  In that world, does NASA continue?  Should it continue?  If it should, how would it's core mission change?
It's not democrats vs republicans, it's reality vs innumerate space cadet fantasy.

Offline Proponent

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #167 on: 02/27/2018 02:57 PM »
... lets look down the road 50 years - suppose we have a world that looks like cis-lunar 1000, or 2001: A Space Odyssey, or something like that, where we have relatively cheap access, and we have lots of people in space, and so forth.  In a world like that, does NASA continue to exist?   I think that is a fair question that the space community had better be prepared to answer, and give a reason as to whether it should exist or not, and why.  And if it does continue to exist, how would it need to change?

Even if that happens, is there not likely to still be a space frontier, a realm for exploration that the commercial sector is unlikely to pursue?  The outer solar system, interstellar space, and so on?

Offline Political Hack Wannabe

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #168 on: 02/27/2018 03:19 PM »
... lets look down the road 50 years - suppose we have a world that looks like cis-lunar 1000, or 2001: A Space Odyssey, or something like that, where we have relatively cheap access, and we have lots of people in space, and so forth.  In a world like that, does NASA continue to exist?   I think that is a fair question that the space community had better be prepared to answer, and give a reason as to whether it should exist or not, and why.  And if it does continue to exist, how would it need to change?

Even if that happens, is there not likely to still be a space frontier, a realm for exploration that the commercial sector is unlikely to pursue?  The outer solar system, interstellar space, and so on?

I get what you are saying, and that is a reasonable point to consider.  But I think that before we make that assumption, we should actually consider the possibility of success (and I will stipulate that you can define success however you want), and then ask the question of "what if it happens?  Do we still need NASA?  And if we do, how does NASA need to change in that world?" 

Going to your point - what is the value of doing exploration in the outer solar system, or interstellar, etc?  And why would commercial space not be interested?  (and yes, this has shades of what kind of agency is NASA, and how I don't like the phrase space exploration... Other stuff I've been yelled at for) 
It's not democrats vs republicans, it's reality vs innumerate space cadet fantasy.

Online Coastal Ron

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #169 on: 02/27/2018 03:35 PM »
I get what you are saying, and that is a reasonable point to consider.  But I think that before we make that assumption, we should actually consider the possibility of success (and I will stipulate that you can define success however you want), and then ask the question of "what if it happens?  Do we still need NASA?  And if we do, how does NASA need to change in that world?"

Think people forget that NASA just happens to be the part of the government that is normally used to solve problems that are related to the peaceful use of space.

So the question is not whether NASA will continue to exist at some point in the future, but whether we'll still have problems that need to be solved in the future, in space, that aren't relate to the national defense?

For instance, will there still be unanswered questions regarding the origin of our universe? If yes, then some part of our government is going to continue working on trying to answer them, like they do today.

Or, will we still be evolving our space transportation systems? If yes, then there will be a need for research and development, and that has also been the government has wanted to be involved in (NASA precursor NACA was started over 100 years ago to help industry with aeronautical research).

Then again, once humanity expands out into space, it could be that countries on Earth no longer control the activities in space, so the U.S.A. may not feel a need to spend money on space. But I feel that is unlikely to happen, so I think NASA, or it's successor, will continue to be needed well into the future.
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 Lar

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #170 on: 02/27/2018 03:36 PM »
... is there not likely to still be a space frontier, a realm for exploration that the commercial sector is unlikely to pursue?  The outer solar system, interstellar space, and so on?
(pure fan)
Radical libertarian answer: No. A robust interplanetary industrial economy will want to expand, and will fund exploration and R&D and expansion. Musk might become the first space trillionaire but there will be others.

Pragmatic answer: As long as we live in a mixed economy there will always be government agencies. NASA can be one of the better ones, as long as it is kept focus on doing research and development, and not doing things the commercial sector can do better. (currently, launchers, soon, other things as well)
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Offline butters

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #171 on: 02/27/2018 03:42 PM »
No matter how successful the commercial spaceflight industry becomes, they have no reason to fund general science missions. For example, they might be interested in funding instruments for locating water on Mars, but they won't fund instruments for studying the geological history of water of Mars. A government spender is required if we want to do anything other than transportation and life support.

I'm increasingly of the view that the SLS program has to survive to see the BFR become operational. If SLS is cancelled before the BFR is demonstrated, I think there are three possible outcomes: 1) Yet another big booster in Huntsville, 2) A budget cut while NASA waits for "exploration class" launch vehicles to emerge from the private sector, or 3) NASA dives headfirst into a distributed lift architecture for FH/NG-class launchers but it's not ready to launch before SpaceX sends the first pair of cargo BFS to Mars and loses interest in FH-based exploration architectures.

Outcome 3 wouldn't be the worst thing in the world. We might not ever finish the gateway station or whatever lunar architecture we're trying to build before it's overtaken by events, but at least NASA would be adjusting to its new role of primarily managing the development of in-space hardware. And even if SpaceX isn't interested in committing to a series of FH launches for NASA in the mid-late 2020s, Blue Origin is likely to be interested in New Glenn missions over this timeframe.

If the SLS program continues through the advent of BFR, then it becomes easy to sell the idea that NASA is no longer needed in the rocket business and that there's never been a better time to invest in exploration payloads because of rapidly reducing launch costs. NASA has resisted distributed lift architectures for so many decades that commercial launch providers have every reason to doubt that such missions will ever materialize. The window of opportunity is already closing. Fully-reusable SHLVs will arrive before distributed lift is ever attempted.

Offline chrisking0997

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #172 on: 02/27/2018 04:39 PM »
... lets look down the road 50 years - suppose we have a world that looks like cis-lunar 1000, or 2001: A Space Odyssey, or something like that, where we have relatively cheap access, and we have lots of people in space, and so forth.  In a world like that, does NASA continue to exist?   I think that is a fair question that the space community had better be prepared to answer, and give a reason as to whether it should exist or not, and why.  And if it does continue to exist, how would it need to change?

Even if that happens, is there not likely to still be a space frontier, a realm for exploration that the commercial sector is unlikely to pursue?  The outer solar system, interstellar space, and so on?

I get what you are saying, and that is a reasonable point to consider.  But I think that before we make that assumption, we should actually consider the possibility of success (and I will stipulate that you can define success however you want), and then ask the question of "what if it happens?  Do we still need NASA?  And if we do, how does NASA need to change in that world?" 

Going to your point - what is the value of doing exploration in the outer solar system, or interstellar, etc?  And why would commercial space not be interested?  (and yes, this has shades of what kind of agency is NASA, and how I don't like the phrase space exploration... Other stuff I've been yelled at for)

Why arent we asking these questions about NASA in reference to their Aerospace mission?  The answer(s) might guide the discussion
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Offline john smith 19

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Re: Lori Garverís op ed piece...
« Reply #173 on: 02/27/2018 07:33 PM »
Even if that happens, is there not likely to still be a space frontier, a realm for exploration that the commercial sector is unlikely to pursue?  The outer solar system, interstellar space, and so on?
Probably.

Mars is about 1.5AU from the Sun, Jupiter is 5.46AU, and that's the innermost member of the "outer" solar system.

Now how those planets (and their numerous moons) get explored is another question. A "super" SLS?
Or should NASA issues a RFP on how to do it with existing launch assets?
BFS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFORSC engined CFRP structured A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of flying in Earth and Mars atmospheres. BFR. The worlds biggest Methane fueled FFORSC engined CFRP structured booster for BFS. First flight to Mars by end of 2022. Forward looking statements. T&C apply. Believe no one. Run your own numbers. So, you are going to Mars to start a better life? Picture it in your mind. Now say what it is out loud.

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