Author Topic: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars  (Read 125311 times)

Offline Slarty1080

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Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« on: 12/30/2018 12:27 pm »
The general shape of the Starship is beginning to settle down. What are people’s views on the deck layouts for the first crewed Mars mission? Although highly speculative I think there are certain things which belong together, so here's my thoughts to get the ball rolling top to bottom:

1. Launch deck Flight acceleration couches controls and comms required for lift off and landing.

2. Spares and general storage space.

3. Main crew deck shared eating space, galley, tables/chairs, exercise equipment and
window(s).

4. ECLSS systems and some ECLSS spares, 0g toilets x2, 0g showers x2 plus a “standard” toilet and shower.

5. Cargo deck with crew sleeping quarters / storm shelter centrally positioned surrounded by consumables, clothes, food, water and other stores.

6. Lab one half / other half suitlock area with suit storage and suit spares plus airlock(s).

7. Unpressurized cargo deck with crane and 4m outer door plus airlock access to deck above.

Central connecting access well running top to bottom with ladder and small lift platform. One or two windows in the upper deck crew areas.

My optimistic hope is that it will become cool to really think about things... rather than just doing reactive bullsh*t based on no knowledge (Brian Cox)

Offline 50_Caliber

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #1 on: 12/30/2018 03:26 pm »
I really like the idea that a bridge would be needed, this is kind of the first space ship
 big enough that might need an operations area for controlling the ship that keep passengers away from the critical controls.

Here's a speculative cutaway posted on Reddit:


Offline ThereIWas3

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #2 on: 12/30/2018 04:10 pm »
I would use an electronically steerable antenna in the nose instead of a mechanical one, which is just one more thing that needs maintenance.  But also add an optical comms unit, which is a laser combined with a telescope.  This might be integrated into the navigational telescope equipment.

Online AC in NC

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #3 on: 12/30/2018 04:17 pm »
Here's a speculative cutaway posted on Reddit:

Cool picture for discussion purposes but dated and likely to become further dated.

Handy tip:  Attach images (Choose File Below) rather than Insert Image (Button above) and we can Inline Expand images rather than have to open them in a new window to see full size.

Offline MikeAtkinson

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #4 on: 12/30/2018 04:29 pm »
The first crewed ships will be slightly different than later ones. They will have crews of only 6 -15, be designed for long term habitation on Mars, have professional astronaut crews and much more storage space.

I would expect one floor of cabins and a large open area in the nose, a small storm shelter, no open space in the centre of the vehicle, a small open lift, and a flight of stairs linking all levels.

One possibility is to have flexible decking which can be changed between zero-g and Mars.

I see no reason to have a bridge/control room, or dedicated controls, a few laptops are all that are needed.

Offline mwood

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #5 on: 12/30/2018 04:35 pm »
I would use an electronically steerable antenna in the nose instead of a mechanical one, which is just one more thing that needs maintenance.  But also add an optical comms unit, which is a laser combined with a telescope.  This might be integrated into the navigational telescope equipment.
Good idea. Also, since change to metal skin entire comms array may need to be deployed external to ship during transit unless placed behind composite sections.

Offline Slarty1080

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #6 on: 12/30/2018 05:00 pm »
Here's a speculative cutaway posted on Reddit:

Cool picture for discussion purposes but dated and likely to become further dated.

Handy tip:  Attach images (Choose File Below) rather than Insert Image (Button above) and we can Inline Expand images rather than have to open them in a new window to see full size.
Yes its an interesting layout, with some items I had forgotten for example the hydroponics area which I think would (as suggested) be included from a crew wellbeing angle rather than a sustainable food source.

But I’m not at all sure about the 3 story high wide circular well. Very nice in zero g but on the surface of Mars it could be quite dangerous (not to mention on Earth) as could accessing the bridge with a 5 story fall directly below the entrance hatch.

I don’t see any lab area or suitlocks / gloveboxes which I think would be needed. Also a storm shelter and probably a lot more storage space for “stuff” like spare pumps, wipes, food etc etc etc (etc).
My optimistic hope is that it will become cool to really think about things... rather than just doing reactive bullsh*t based on no knowledge (Brian Cox)

Online AC in NC

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #7 on: 12/30/2018 05:17 pm »
But I’m not at all sure about the 3 story high wide circular well. Very nice in zero g but on the surface of Mars it could be quite dangerous.

I'm sure.  Cute for displaying some of the sections but completely not going to happen.  Center well would be minimally sized perhaps with sealable segments for a variety of reasons (floor space, decompression isolation, etc). 

Agreed with Mike above on bridge.  All functions available via distributed touchscreen pads.

Offline rakaydos

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #8 on: 12/30/2018 05:30 pm »
Ladders are probably the best compromise between gravity and zero g. A typical 2 meter clearance deck in gravity is a huge volume by zero g standards, so the ladders will need to project into the walkway to give zeroG passengers something to grab as they fly by.

Offline Slarty1080

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #9 on: 12/30/2018 05:50 pm »
But I’m not at all sure about the 3 story high wide circular well. Very nice in zero g but on the surface of Mars it could be quite dangerous.

I'm sure.  Cute for displaying some of the sections but completely not going to happen.  Center well would be minimally sized perhaps with sealable segments for a variety of reasons (floor space, decompression isolation, etc). 

Agreed with Mike above on bridge.  All functions available via distributed touchscreen pads.
Interesting, I'm certain that no dedicated bridge is required as you say, but I wonder if there might still be an area with acceleration couches for all the crew that might loosely be termed "the bridge" during a Musk presentation? Wonder if he would prefer that or would prefer to shock the uninformed by playing on the fact that there was no bridge. Also presumably no pilot - although again the term might be reserved for the autopilot minder.
My optimistic hope is that it will become cool to really think about things... rather than just doing reactive bullsh*t based on no knowledge (Brian Cox)

Online AC in NC

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #10 on: 12/30/2018 06:02 pm »
Interesting, I'm certain that no dedicated bridge is required as you say, but I wonder if there might still be an area with acceleration couches for all the crew that might loosely be termed "the bridge" during a Musk presentation? Wonder if he would prefer that or would prefer to shock the uninformed by playing on the fact that there was no bridge. Also presumably no pilot - although again the term might be reserved for the autopilot minder.

That's a question that it's going to have (I think) no obvious answer.

Acceleration "couches" seem must-have to me (correct me if I'm wrong).  They also seem volumetrically wasteful in zero-G.  I'm trying to think what they might be combined with for efficient UseOS.  Separately I was wondering about a deck almost like a "home theater" for such common viewing purposes but I think this is wasteful.  Was also thinking combining with the Emergency Radiation Shelter but I think couches would be too bulky there.

Would you launch crew in a very compact (claustrophobically so) "couch deck" with "retractable" couch segments for each person, such that you could (on orbit) transition to the main living quarters and stow distributed cargo pods back into the "couch deck"?   

And separately, what "height" would living decks by sized to?  I'm again thinking minimum whatever that ergonomically manifests as.

Offline OhYeah

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #11 on: 12/30/2018 06:04 pm »
I see no reason to have a bridge/control room, or dedicated controls, a few laptops are all that are needed.

This might sound a bit daft, but I think some sort of helm or navigation station might be necessary not for engineering reasons, but for pyschological ones. You are in a control of an enormously big and expensive spaceship that is on a year-long voyage to another planet. You want the person in charge of piloting the darn thing to be at his or her peak concentration level every time a maneuver is carried out. Every time you strap yourself in that chair you understand that this is the real deal and no mistakes are allowed. I'm not sure chatting with your crew mates, sipping coffee and lazily typing commands in to your laptop has the same effect to fully mentally prepare you for the task of piloting an interplanetary spaceship.

Online AC in NC

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #12 on: 12/30/2018 06:08 pm »
I see no reason to have a bridge/control room, or dedicated controls, a few laptops are all that are needed.

This might sound a bit daft, but I think some sort of helm or navigation station might be necessary not for engineering reasons, but for pyschological ones. You are in a control of an enormously big and expensive spaceship that is on a year-long voyage to another planet. You want the person in charge of piloting the darn thing to be at his or her peak concentration level every time a maneuver is carried out. Every time you strap yourself in that chair you understand that this is the real deal and no mistakes are allowed. I'm not sure chatting with your crew mates, sipping coffee and lazily typing commands in to your laptop has the same effect to fully mentally prepare you for the task of piloting an interplanetary spaceship.

Welcome to the forum.  Doesn't sound daft at all but seems premised on the notion that someone is going to be doing a lot of piloting.  Most will be automated.  Same thing can be accomplished with "Procedures", perhaps at most a special station in the "Pilot's" quarters (which may be exactly what you are saying).  Just because all functions would be available everywhere, training (and a sense of self-preservation) would have those responsible too professional to be treating it casually.
« Last Edit: 12/30/2018 06:12 pm by AC in NC »

Offline DistantTemple

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #13 on: 12/30/2018 06:26 pm »
So mission control pings Heart of Gold with a 15 min delay: "hey guys, can you just do a manual check on..." and that's the last they hear. Then its: "who's the pilot?" ... "well I'm the mission manager... I not the pilot" etc... 

No that's nonsense.

Someone or a team of two or three are nominated and trained to be "on scene" flight/technical/ship managers. It is part of their role to know in great detail how the automatic systems on the ship work, rather like a pilot flying an airliner on autopilot. They also know the astrogation in detail, understand the detailed flight profile for all stages of the mission, and have rehearsed these in detail, with all "likely" deviations and anomalies. They spend a portion of every day checking and keeping aware of system health and progress. They do this primarily in a space reserved for this, and on screens etc reserved for this. You don't want to close someone's game, another's video, another's unsaved rover program and emails home, before making a system check on an anomalous reading!  Sure they may use other screens etc, and have monitoring of specific systems on other screens, but ISTM that there will be at least a "bridge console" (s) reserved for managing the ship and the mission. There will still be checklists to confirm. And there may well be choices to make in seconds if not split seconds if there is an anomaly. Like to set down outside the desired target, to save g force as a human has just collapsed, or the opposite to set down dangerously close to other assets, to attempt speedier medical intervention. This is not controlling the engines with a joystick, but it is commanding the ship.

Edit spelling etc
« Last Edit: 12/30/2018 06:27 pm by DistantTemple »
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Online AC in NC

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #14 on: 12/30/2018 06:34 pm »
So mission control pings Heart of Gold with a 15 min delay:
...
No that's nonsense.
...
but ISTM that there will be at least a "bridge console" (s) reserved for managing the ship and the mission.

Who said this? (eta: or anything from which this is derivable)  You've constructed and knocked down a strawman.  That "dedicated bridge console" is perfect capable of being integrated within a distributed "all functions available" system.  Ergonomics may dictate something more specific for normal operations day-to-day.
« Last Edit: 12/30/2018 06:39 pm by AC in NC »

Offline 50_Caliber

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #15 on: 12/30/2018 07:02 pm »
Interesting, I'm certain that no dedicated bridge is required as you say, but I wonder if there might still be an area with acceleration couches for all the crew that might loosely be termed "the bridge" during a Musk presentation? Wonder if he would prefer that or would prefer to shock the uninformed by playing on the fact that there was no bridge. Also presumably no pilot - although again the term might be reserved for the autopilot minder.

That's a question that it's going to have (I think) no obvious answer.

Acceleration "couches" seem must-have to me (correct me if I'm wrong).  They also seem volumetrically wasteful in zero-G.  I'm trying to think what they might be combined with for efficient UseOS.  Separately I was wondering about a deck almost like a "home theater" for such common viewing purposes but I think this is wasteful.  Was also thinking combining with the Emergency Radiation Shelter but I think couches would be too bulky there.

Would you launch crew in a very compact (claustrophobically so) "couch deck" with "retractable" couch segments for each person, such that you could (on orbit) transition to the main living quarters and stow distributed cargo pods back into the "couch deck"?   

And separately, what "height" would living decks by sized to?  I'm again thinking minimum whatever that ergonomically manifests as.

I wouldn't rule out some of the internal layout could be for simply being really cool instead of ergonomic optimization.

Seems like seating for landings, acceleration would be something useful, probably a common area for passengers and pilot. This could be simply hammocks with retractable attachment points that can be put away after acceleration events.

Offline rcoppola

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #16 on: 12/30/2018 07:12 pm »
At some point they'll begin development of internal mockups in some warehouse / hanger, if they haven't already. This, imo, will be the most difficult and exciting task ahead. And while they will have a number of precedents to tap into, nothing of equivalence has ever been attempted. I wonder if they have any hardcore Submarine designers and engineers on an interior design and ops team. 

Dragon 2 is one thing...this....this will be a technical, cultural, philosophical, tactical, sociological, psychological, endeavor like none before.  Like these arguments over "centralized" controls and the spaces they inhabit vs "distributed" controls is exactly the kinds of systems engineering and design they must be hashing about. Oh to be in those conversations...
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Offline DistantTemple

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #17 on: 12/30/2018 07:13 pm »
So mission control pings Heart of Gold with a 15 min delay:
...
No that's nonsense.
...
but ISTM that there will be at least a "bridge console" (s) reserved for managing the ship and the mission.

Who said this?  You've constructed and knocked down a strawman.  That "dedicated bridge console" is perfect capable of being integrated within a distributed "all functions available" system.  Ergonomics may dictate something more specific for normal operations day-to-day.
I said it under ISTM.
Yes it is capable of being integrated as you say, and I assume will be. However I believe they will have screens not used for other work or leisure, in a space where the ship managers can focus undisturbed, both for routine daily checks, and for critical  periods such as EDL.   I say this will reduce risk; if not a purely technical risk, then a risk to human focus, and cooperation. You don't want someone scrolling their email, accidentally adjusting a ship parameter. Or a detail passed over because of an unrelated conversation.

I know on yachts you have to clear the cooking off of the chart table! And when driving, passengers always start chatting to the driver as you are negotiating a busy interchange. Physical space and equipment boundaries support work, focus and responsibility boundaries. In the "bridge area" I bet there will even be a few literal "stickies", and even laminated paper checklists, despite the ability of "screens" to take these roles.

Once there are more "passengers" this area will be "out of bounds" to many.

Edit: Its just my opinion. I may well be proved wrong.
« Last Edit: 12/30/2018 07:27 pm by DistantTemple »
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Offline DasBlinkenlight

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #18 on: 12/30/2018 07:27 pm »
While most functions can be controlled from a laptop anywhere, there will be circuit breakers, auxiliary and emergency hardware controls that must have a physical location.   You need a hardware interface to reboot the flight computers or the server running the GUI.   Abort systems like to have separate dedicated hardware as well.

Online AC in NC

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Re: Starship layout for the first Humans on Mars
« Reply #19 on: 12/30/2018 07:43 pm »
So mission control pings Heart of Gold with a 15 min delay:
...
No that's nonsense.

Who said this?  You've constructed and knocked down a strawman.
I said it under ISTM.

The MC->Heart of Gold scenario which you cited to declare nonsense seemed intended to rebut something someone else had posted.  That's what I considered a strawman.  If it was for some other purpose, it wasn't obvious to me and so I apologize.

 

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