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    NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  Walther von Oldenburg on Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:54 pm

    With current technology any form of terraforming is unfeasible. On Mars you have to create a proper magnetosphere first - basically brining an object of the size of Ceres to martian orbit... good luck.
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Mon Jul 06, 2015 12:13 am

    NASA’s New Horizons Spacecraft to Pluto Experiences Anomaly


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  flamming_python on Mon Jul 06, 2015 1:37 am

    George1 wrote:NASA’s New Horizons Spacecraft to Pluto Experiences Anomaly

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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Tue Jul 14, 2015 5:22 am

    NASA's New Horizons Closes in on Pluto



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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Tue Jul 14, 2015 4:06 pm

    Never Get Lost on Mars Again With NASA's New Red Planet Map


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Fri Jul 31, 2015 2:58 am

    NASA Scared of Traffic Jams Around Mars

    With a growing number of spacecraft orbiting the Red Planet, NASA is beginning to worry about celestial collisions. To avoid satellite fender benders, the agency is looking to boost its Deep Space Network traffic monitoring system.

    If 2013’s "Gravity" taught us anything, it’s that there’s little room for error in space. One defunct satellite bumps into your space shuttle, and suddenly you’ve got a chain reaction which pretty much brings down every space station every launched into orbit.

    We almost lost Sandra Bullock.

    While it may be over 100 million miles away from Earth – and presumably immune to the traffic problems that plague Interstate 405 in Los Angeles – the space around Mars is also becoming surprisingly crowded. India launched its Mangalyaan probe last year, immediately followed by NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft. They’re now rocketing around Mars, often narrowly avoiding the Mars Odyssey, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), and Mars Express probes also in orbit.

    Not to mention Phobos and Deimos, the planet’s two moons. While their orbits are typically further out than that of the spacecraft, there are points of overlap.

    "Previously, collision avoidance was coordinated between the Odyssey and MRO navigation teams," Robert Shotwell, Mars Program chief engineer with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said in a statement.

    But the new spacecraft are complicating things.

    "There was less of a possibility of an issue. MAVEN’s highly elliptical orbit, crossing the altitudes of other orbits, changes the probability that someone will need to do a collision-avoidance maneuver," Shotwell said. "There’s still a low probability of needing a maneuver, but it’s something we need to manage."

    To accomplish that, the agency relies on Deep Space Network. With communications facilities in the US, Spain, and Australia, the system utilizes a global antenna network designed to assist interplanetary spaceflight.

    Using ultra-sensitive receivers, DSN can keep track of any vessel travelling over 10,000 miles from Earth. If any of those spacecraft appear to be getting too close to one another, an alert is sent to the remote pilot, who can then alter the flightpath.

    The system is already proving its worth. In January, an automated signal warned of a potential collision between MRO and MAVEN, which would pass within two miles of each other. Thankfully, avoidance maneuvers turned out to be unnecessary.

    Monitoring, of course, can only do so much. The Mars Global Surveyor, an old mapping satellite which went dark in 2006, is also being tracked by Deep Space Network. If it were to enter the flight path of one of the active probes, those could be steered away. But because NASA has lost communication with Surveyor, it could do little if that satellite was on a collision course with either of the two moons or a rogue asteroid.

    Over 19,000 large pieces of space junk are being tracked in orbit around Earth. If a similar buildup were to occur around Mars, it could add strain on the tracking system, and make future missions to the Red Planet exponentially more complicated.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/science/20150731/1025234219.html#ixzz3hQT1Nm9s


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Wed Sep 09, 2015 12:52 am

    Forget Flybys: Now NASA Wants to Land on Jupiter Moon to Look for Aliens

    In our search for life-harboring bodies in the solar system, the Jovian satellite of Europa may be our safest bet. While NASA previously announced a flyby mission to observe the moon from afar, the space agency now has plans to send a probe down to the surface, where life may exist in vast oceans beneath the ice.

    "All these worlds are yours, except Europa. Attempt no landing there." reads a cryptic message from an alien race in Arthur C. Clarke’s sequel to "2001: A Space Odyssey."

    As you can probably guess, that warning was pretty much ignored. A team of astronauts land on the moon’s frozen surface, only to be immediately attacked by a giant squid creature from beneath the ice.

    Clarke, one of science fiction’s most fastidiously scientific writers, may not be entirely off base. While the mysterious alien message and aggressively evolved octopus may be imagined narrative devices, there’s still a reason he chose to set the tale on Europe: as far as our solar system goes, it may be the most likely candidate to host life beyond Earth.

    And according to a statement from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), the space agency may soon be attempting a landing of its own.

    "We are actively pursuing the possibility of a lander," Robert Pappalardo, Europa project scientist with JPL, said during a conference last week, according to Space.com.

    "NASA has asked us to investigate: What would it take? How much would it cost? Could we put a small surface package on Europa with this mission?"

    A mission to Europa was previously announced by the space agency. Slated for launch sometime in the mid-2020s, NASA originally planned to survey the moon through a series of 45 flybys. Using a number of instruments, including ice-penetrating radar and high-resolution cameras, the observations would provide untold details about Europa’s surface composition and characteristics.

    But a lander could take even more accurate measurements. NASA has also asked the European Space Agency if it would like its own lander to be included on the flyby mission.

    What we already know about Europa has many researchers excited about the moon’s possibilities. Slightly smaller than our own moon, Europa is wrapped in a 50 mile-thick sheet of ice. But beneath that layer, scientists believe the planet to be covered in a massive ocean, which could contain twice as much salt water as the planet Earth.

    Researchers also believe that ocean to be as old as the solar system itself. An ancient, 4.5 billion-year-old ocean could theoretically provide ample time for life to evolve.

    "When it comes to habitability, we’d like to have the knowledge that the potentially habitable environment has been there for a significant duration," Kevin Hand, deputy chief scientist at JPL’s Solar System Exploration Directorate, said during the same panel.
    What we’ve imagined as a sister planet lush with salt oceans may have, in fact, been a very dry and frozen place.

    Still, much about the moon’s landscape remains a mystery, and that could present extreme challenges for the possibility of a lander. While we know the icy surface contains a number of cracks, most likely caused by the waters beneath, the effect of those cracks on the topography remains unknown.

    "We don’t actually know what the surface of Europa looks like at the scale of this table, at the scale of a lander – if it’s smooth, if it’s incredibly rough, if it’s full of spikes," Curt Niebur, a Europa program scientist with NASA, said during a conference in June.

    "Without knowing what the surface even looks like, it’s difficult to design a lander that could survive."

    Whatever NASA decides, Pappalardo expects a decision to be made by the end of the year. It’s impossible to say what we’ll find, but if there’s a giant black monolith sticking out of the ice, can we all just agree to pack up and move on?

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/science/20150909/1026757046/Europa-Lander.html#ixzz3lBrNOhLZ


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Mon Oct 26, 2015 11:22 pm

    US Orion Rocket Passes Review, Moves to Assembly Stage - Lockheed Martin

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/us/20151026/1029144116/us-orion-rocket-lockheed-martin-nasa.html#ixzz3piOhpsoS


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  AlfaT8 on Tue Oct 27, 2015 1:05 am

    George1 wrote:US Orion Rocket Passes Review, Moves to Assembly Stage - Lockheed Martin

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/us/20151026/1029144116/us-orion-rocket-lockheed-martin-nasa.html#ixzz3piOhpsoS

    Lockheed Martin!!
    Ooh boy, this ain't gonna end well. Rolling Eyes
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Thu Oct 29, 2015 3:52 pm

    NASA Chief: We're Closer to Sending Humans on Mars Than Ever Before

    President Barack Obama remains committed to a 2030 manned mission to Mars, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Administrator Charles Bolden, Jr. stated on Wednesday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Bolden noted that NASA’s deadline the Mars mission was 2030.

    “We're closer to sending human beings to the Red Planet than ever before in human history,” Bolden told a meeting at the Center for American Progress in Washington, DC.

    In a preparatory mission for the manned Mars landing, Bolden explained, NASA also plans to send an unmanned module in 2020.

    “[NASA will send a] new rover to the red planet in 2020 that will help us prepare for [a] human mission,” Bolden said.

    The unmanned mission would be designed to send Mars rocks back to Earth for direct scientific examination, he told the audience.

    Bolden also said that when the 2030 manned mission arrived on the Martian surface, the astronauts would not have to build their own base because it would already have been constructed underground for them by robots sent in advance.

    “We are going to send a team of robots in. We will send the robotic precursors in. … That's what I mean about collaboration between humans and robotic technology,” he pointed out.

    Bolden explained an underground base on Mars would have many advantages for human survivability over one constructed on the planet’s surface.

    “I think we will probably live under ground for the most part. It gets rid of the need for above ground shielding,” he stated.

    Bolden commanded two US space shuttle missions and was the pilot on two in his previous career as an astronaut. He has been NASA’s chief administrator since July 2009.

    Before and after his time as an astronaut, Bolden served in the US Marine Corps and rose to the rank of major general.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/science/20151028/1029244785/mars-nasa-chief-send-humans.html#ixzz3py6nuRWG


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  max steel on Thu Nov 05, 2015 8:21 pm

    Miser Pays Twice: Low-Cost Super Strypi Rail-Launched Rocket Fails in Debut


    The debut of a new, rail-launched experimental rocket for small satellites failed less than a minute into its flight, the US Air Force said, according to Spacenews.com.

    The rail-launched Super Strypi rocket was part of the Operationally Responsive Space (ORS)-4 mission.

    "The ORS-4 mission on an experimental Super Strypi launch vehicle failed in mid-flight after liftoff at 5:45 p.m. Hawaii Standard Time (7:45 p.m. PST/10:45 p.m. EST) today from the Pacific Missile Range Facility off Barking Sands, Kauai, Hawaii," the Air Force said in a brief statement on November 4.

    Project officials wanted to build a new launcher that would provide a low-cost launch option for smaller satellites. The Super Strypi project was expected to cost about $15 million per mission and bring as much as 300 kilograms of load into orbit.

    Currently US defense organizations, such as the US Army, the Air Force and the National Reconnaissance Office build heavy-lift rockets that cost billions of dollars.

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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Sat Nov 21, 2015 12:25 am

    NASA Gives SpaceX Company 1st Mission Order to International Space Station

    The first mission order has been submitted to SpaceX to ferry US astronauts to ISS.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The first mission order has been submitted to the private space company SpaceX to ferry US astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2017, NASA announced in a press release.

    NASA’s contract with SpaceX is the second guaranteed order for an ISS crew mission. The agency granted the first mission to Boeing earlier this year.

    "It’s really exciting to see SpaceX and Boeing with hardware in flow for their first crew rotation missions," NASA Commercial Crew Program director Kathy Lueders said.

    SpaceX President and CEO Gwynne Shotwell responded to the mission order stating that the company’s Crew Dragon Capsule is "one of the safest, most reliable spacecraft ever flown."

    The United States has been entirely dependent on the Russian Soyuz shuttle to get into low Earth orbit, after retiring its shuttle fleet in 2011. Both Boeing and SpaceX must complete certification and other requirements before flying the missions, which are scheduled to take place sometime in 2017.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/science/20151121/1030489093/nasa-orders-spacex-iss.html#ixzz3s4qRzqSA


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Mon Dec 07, 2015 1:09 am

    Cygnus Cargo Spacecraft Launched From Florida Towards ISS

    NASA reported that orbital ATK on Sunday launched its Cygnus cargo ship from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida to resupply astronauts at the International Space Station after postponing the launch twice over weather conditions.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Orbital ATK on Sunday launched its Cygnus cargo ship from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) in Florida to resupply astronauts at the International Space Station (ISS) after postponing the launch twice over weather conditions, the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) said.

    ​The United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket was initially scheduled to take the Cygnus spacecraft to the ISS at 5:55 p. m. EST (22:55 GMT) on Thursday. The launch was then rescheduled for Friday 5:33 p.m. EST (22:33 GMT), but was cancelled again because of poor weather conditions.

    The spacecraft is expected to dock with the ISS on Wednesday.

    The delayed mission is Orbital ATK’s fourth to the ISS under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services contract with the company. According to NASA, this will be the first flight of an "enhanced" Cygnus spacecraft, which has a higher payload capacity and new fuel tanks.

    The improvements come after the October 2014 accident, when an Orbital ATK Antares rocker that was to deliver a Cygnus spacecraft to the ISS crashed six seconds after launch. Orbital ATK suspended deliveries to the ISS after the crash.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/science/20151207/1031336188/cygnus-launched-iss.html#ixzz3taa1sZPi


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  George1 on Sun Dec 20, 2015 2:06 pm

    NASA Orders Second Boeing Crew Mission to International Space Station

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/science/20151219/1032008074/space-nasa-boeing-iss.html#ixzz3urkMTV4L


    Spacecraft for Mars Mission Sent to California Launch Site

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/science/20151217/1031931364/lockheed-mars-spacecraft.html#ixzz3urkSdzHK



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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  Project Canada on Wed Dec 23, 2015 9:43 pm

    U.S. space firm’s success may threaten Russian satellites


    The daily newspaper Vzglyad reports that U.S. company SpaceX's success in bringing back to Earth a unit from the Falcon-9 rocket in functioning condition is something really unimaginable. Now the delivery of cargo to near-earth orbit will be at least 10 times cheaper, writes the publication. Does this mean that the Russian Proton and Soyuz satellites will be left without a job?

    Experiments on returning the first unit of the Falcon-9 had been carried out since 2010. Only the eighth attempt, conducted on Dec. 21, 2015, was absolutely successful.

    The cost of the Falcon-9 launch is currently estimated at about $60 million. The unit returned costs $54 million. SpaceX will therefore lose only $6 million on the Falcon-9 if the unit is able to land by itself for further use.

    This could lead to a real revolution in the world space market since the delivery cost of one kilogram of cargo onto the Earth's orbit could fall to $1,100, which on average is 20 times less than on other one-time carriers.

    This would leave the Proton, Soyuz, Arian and Atlas satellites out of work, if it were not for one "but." Despite its variety, the Falcon-9 cannot replace, for example, the Proton, since the load-bearing capacity of the Russian carrier is 10 tons more.

    However, if the matter involved a large space apparatus weighing 20 tons, two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million. One Proton can deliver a 23-ton object for $100-120 million. Therefore, using two Falcon-9s is more advantageous than one Proton, writes Vzglyad.
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  Big_Gazza on Thu Dec 24, 2015 1:49 am

    Project Canada wrote:U.S. space firm’s success may threaten Russian satellites


    The daily newspaper Vzglyad reports that U.S. company SpaceX's success in bringing back to Earth a unit from the Falcon-9 rocket in functioning condition is something really unimaginable. Now the delivery of cargo to near-earth orbit will be at least 10 times cheaper, writes the publication. Does this mean that the Russian Proton and Soyuz satellites will be left without a job?

    Experiments on returning the first unit of the Falcon-9 had been carried out since 2010. Only the eighth attempt, conducted on Dec. 21, 2015, was absolutely successful.

    The cost of the Falcon-9 launch is currently estimated at about $60 million. The unit returned costs $54 million. SpaceX will therefore lose only $6 million on the Falcon-9 if the unit is able to land by itself for further use.

    This could lead to a real revolution in the world space market since the delivery cost of one kilogram of cargo onto the Earth's orbit could fall to $1,100, which on average is 20 times less than on other one-time carriers.

    This would leave the Proton, Soyuz, Arian and Atlas satellites out of work, if it were not for one "but." Despite its variety, the Falcon-9 cannot replace, for example, the Proton, since the load-bearing capacity of the Russian carrier is 10 tons more.

    However, if the matter involved a large space apparatus weighing 20 tons, two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million. One Proton can deliver a 23-ton object for $100-120 million. Therefore, using two Falcon-9s is more advantageous than one Proton, writes Vzglyad.

    Someone is channelling Musks propaganda as this is the usual hyper-optimistic fan-boi garbage.  It remains to be seen if a pre-flown F9 can be reused with anything like the reliability of a brand new unit fresh off the assembly line.  Given the experience with operating "reuseable" shuttles (which in reality were "refurbishable" shuttles requiring huge expenses between launches) I personally doubt that recovery of F9 stage will change the dynamics in a significant way.

    One question that is ignored is this - how many satellite owners will be willing to risk their expensive payloads worth several $100M on a USED launcher?  Isn't it better business sense to go for superior reliability and plug for the new item?  Launcher costs are a small part of a payloads cost in any event.

    Another factor that is regularly ignored is that flying back the booster is only achieved by accepting a huge penalty in weight delivered to orbit.  The core stage needs enough fuel to reverse its course, fly back to its pad, and then control its descent.  This F9 flight delivered a small payload of only 2.2T.  That's a large rocket for such a small payload.  The idea that "two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million" is simply absurd.  There is NO WAY that an F9 with a recoverable 1st stage can lift 13T to LEO.

    Reuseability is a good idea, but I think Musk is barking up the wrong tree on this one.  A large fly-back booster is the better idea as it leverages off conventional aircraft technologies and established maintenance knowledge base of commercial and heavy military aircraft.  Design it with modular propulsion plant so that engines can be changed out after each flight and returned to factory for de-coking and cleanup, retest and recertification, while the flyback vehicle is fitted with another propulsion module and reflown.

    In any case, only time will tell.  The idea that Musk and his F9 will threaten Russia's space industry is simply laughable scare-mongering.


    Last edited by Big_Gazza on Thu Dec 24, 2015 2:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  kvs on Thu Dec 24, 2015 1:57 am

    Big_Gazza wrote:
    Project Canada wrote:U.S. space firm’s success may threaten Russian satellites


    The daily newspaper Vzglyad reports that U.S. company SpaceX's success in bringing back to Earth a unit from the Falcon-9 rocket in functioning condition is something really unimaginable. Now the delivery of cargo to near-earth orbit will be at least 10 times cheaper, writes the publication. Does this mean that the Russian Proton and Soyuz satellites will be left without a job?

    Experiments on returning the first unit of the Falcon-9 had been carried out since 2010. Only the eighth attempt, conducted on Dec. 21, 2015, was absolutely successful.

    The cost of the Falcon-9 launch is currently estimated at about $60 million. The unit returned costs $54 million. SpaceX will therefore lose only $6 million on the Falcon-9 if the unit is able to land by itself for further use.

    This could lead to a real revolution in the world space market since the delivery cost of one kilogram of cargo onto the Earth's orbit could fall to $1,100, which on average is 20 times less than on other one-time carriers.

    This would leave the Proton, Soyuz, Arian and Atlas satellites out of work, if it were not for one "but." Despite its variety, the Falcon-9 cannot replace, for example, the Proton, since the load-bearing capacity of the Russian carrier is 10 tons more.

    However, if the matter involved a large space apparatus weighing 20 tons, two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million. One Proton can deliver a 23-ton object for $100-120 million. Therefore, using two Falcon-9s is more advantageous than one Proton, writes Vzglyad.

    Someone is channelling Musks propaganda as this is the usual hyper-optimistic fan-boi garbage.  It remains to be seen if a pre-flown F9 can be reused with anything like the reliability of a brand new unit fresh off the assembly line.  Given the experience with operating "reuseable" shuttles (which in reality were "refurbishable" shuttles requiring huge expenses between launches) I personally doubt that recovery of F9 stage will change the dynamics in a significant way.

    One question that is ignored is this - how many satellite owners will be willing to risk their expensive payloads worth several $100M on a USED launcher?  Isn't it better business sense to go for superior reliability and plug for the new item?  Launcher costs are a small part of a payloads cost in any event.

    Another factor that is regularly ignored is that flying back the booster is only achieved by accepting a huge penalty in weight delivered to orbit.  The core stage needs enough fuel to reverse its course, fly back to its pad, and then control its descent.  This F9 flight delivered a small payload of only 2.2T.  That's a large rocket for such a small payload.  The idea that "two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million" is simply absurd.  There is NO WAY that an F9 with a recoverable 1st stage can lift 13T to LEO.

    Reuseability is a good idea, but I think Musk is barking up the wrong tree on this one.  A large fly-back booster is the better idea as it leverages off conventional aircraft technologies and established maintenance knowledge base of commercial aircraft.  Design it with modular propulsion plant so that engines can be changed out after each flight and returned to factory for de-coking and cleanup, retest and recertification, while the flyback vehicle is fitted with another propulsion module and reflown.

    In any case, only time will tell.  The idea that Musk and his F9 will threaten Russia's space industry is simply laughable scare-mongering.

    Excellent analysis. The other detail is that Russia's launch costs are intrinsically lower than those of the US and the EU.
    I applaud the effort to build reusable rockets, but the predictions of Russia's demise are premature and idiotic.
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  PapaDragon on Thu Dec 24, 2015 2:04 am


    SpaceX landed rocket? OK but why is this such a big whoop? Didn't that other dude (owns Amazon I think) already do this month ago or something?

    I remember Musk being quite butthurt about it...
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  higurashihougi on Thu Dec 24, 2015 2:28 pm

    Threaten or not I don't know, but the U.S. continued to buy Russian RD-180

    https://www.rt.com/usa/326955-us-russian-rocket-engines/

    The US has ordered 20 additional RD-180 rocket engines from Russia, days after US Congress lifted the ban on the use of Russian engines to get American ships into space. However, the move has been lambasted by some politicians in Washington.

    United Launch Alliance announced that it placed an order for more RD-180 rockets to be used by Atlas V launch vehicle, on top of 29 engines that the company has ordered before US sanctions against Russia were introduced over Crimea last year.
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  kvs on Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:36 pm

    higurashihougi wrote:Threaten or not I don't know, but the U.S. continued to buy Russian RD-180

    https://www.rt.com/usa/326955-us-russian-rocket-engines/

    The US has ordered 20 additional RD-180 rocket engines from Russia, days after US Congress lifted the ban on the use of Russian engines to get American ships into space. However, the move has been lambasted by some politicians in Washington.

    United Launch Alliance announced that it placed an order for more RD-180 rockets to be used by Atlas V launch vehicle, on top of 29 engines that the company has ordered before US sanctions against Russia were introduced over Crimea last year.

    I guess all those Congress blowhards had to eat their shit. This is clearly not what we were promised.
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    Rmf
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  Rmf on Fri Dec 25, 2015 6:18 pm

    Big_Gazza wrote:
    Project Canada wrote:U.S. space firm’s success may threaten Russian satellites


    The daily newspaper Vzglyad reports that U.S. company SpaceX's success in bringing back to Earth a unit from the Falcon-9 rocket in functioning condition is something really unimaginable. Now the delivery of cargo to near-earth orbit will be at least 10 times cheaper, writes the publication. Does this mean that the Russian Proton and Soyuz satellites will be left without a job?

    Experiments on returning the first unit of the Falcon-9 had been carried out since 2010. Only the eighth attempt, conducted on Dec. 21, 2015, was absolutely successful.

    The cost of the Falcon-9 launch is currently estimated at about $60 million. The unit returned costs $54 million. SpaceX will therefore lose only $6 million on the Falcon-9 if the unit is able to land by itself for further use.

    This could lead to a real revolution in the world space market since the delivery cost of one kilogram of cargo onto the Earth's orbit could fall to $1,100, which on average is 20 times less than on other one-time carriers.

    This would leave the Proton, Soyuz, Arian and Atlas satellites out of work, if it were not for one "but." Despite its variety, the Falcon-9 cannot replace, for example, the Proton, since the load-bearing capacity of the Russian carrier is 10 tons more.

    However, if the matter involved a large space apparatus weighing 20 tons, two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million. One Proton can deliver a 23-ton object for $100-120 million. Therefore, using two Falcon-9s is more advantageous than one Proton, writes Vzglyad.

    Someone is channelling Musks propaganda as this is the usual hyper-optimistic fan-boi garbage.  It remains to be seen if a pre-flown F9 can be reused with anything like the reliability of a brand new unit fresh off the assembly line.  Given the experience with operating "reuseable" shuttles (which in reality were "refurbishable" shuttles requiring huge expenses between launches) I personally doubt that recovery of F9 stage will change the dynamics in a significant way.

    One question that is ignored is this - how many satellite owners will be willing to risk their expensive payloads worth several $100M on a USED launcher?  Isn't it better business sense to go for superior reliability and plug for the new item?  Launcher costs are a small part of a payloads cost in any event.

    Another factor that is regularly ignored is that flying back the booster is only achieved by accepting a huge penalty in weight delivered to orbit.  The core stage needs enough fuel to reverse its course, fly back to its pad, and then control its descent.  This F9 flight delivered a small payload of only 2.2T.  That's a large rocket for such a small payload.  The idea that "two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million" is simply absurd.  There is NO WAY that an F9 with a recoverable 1st stage can lift 13T to LEO.

    Reuseability is a good idea, but I think Musk is barking up the wrong tree on this one.  A large fly-back booster is the better idea as it leverages off conventional aircraft technologies and established maintenance knowledge base of commercial and heavy military aircraft.  Design it with modular propulsion plant so that engines can be changed out after each flight and returned to factory for de-coking and cleanup, retest and recertification, while the flyback vehicle is fitted with another propulsion module and reflown.

    In any case, only time will tell.  The idea that Musk and his F9 will threaten Russia's space industry is simply laughable scare-mongering.

    why? shuttle rs-25 engines were refurbished and reused with 100% reliability (better then soyuz) without major problems ,and they are much bigger and older ! so your story is trash.
    usa private space has got 1 up on russians thats for sure...
    falcon 9 is bit oversized and redundancy is intristic , it uses concept of many engines but with very high thrust to weight ratio (better then famed nk-33), and when launches with 80% full load or lower , it uses spared fuel for landing first stage and its reuse.
    if some engine stops working other compensate with 110% power and you still have successful mission but without reusable stage.
    so your empty jelaous post is jus that . i warned something must change in communist style bueracracies in russian space agency but every rusophyle apologyst was talking how thats not the case.
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  Big_Gazza on Sat Dec 26, 2015 4:44 am

    Rmf wrote:
    Big_Gazza wrote:
    Project Canada wrote:U.S. space firm’s success may threaten Russian satellites


    The daily newspaper Vzglyad reports that U.S. company SpaceX's success in bringing back to Earth a unit from the Falcon-9 rocket in functioning condition is something really unimaginable. Now the delivery of cargo to near-earth orbit will be at least 10 times cheaper, writes the publication. Does this mean that the Russian Proton and Soyuz satellites will be left without a job?

    Experiments on returning the first unit of the Falcon-9 had been carried out since 2010. Only the eighth attempt, conducted on Dec. 21, 2015, was absolutely successful.

    The cost of the Falcon-9 launch is currently estimated at about $60 million. The unit returned costs $54 million. SpaceX will therefore lose only $6 million on the Falcon-9 if the unit is able to land by itself for further use.

    This could lead to a real revolution in the world space market since the delivery cost of one kilogram of cargo onto the Earth's orbit could fall to $1,100, which on average is 20 times less than on other one-time carriers.

    This would leave the Proton, Soyuz, Arian and Atlas satellites out of work, if it were not for one "but." Despite its variety, the Falcon-9 cannot replace, for example, the Proton, since the load-bearing capacity of the Russian carrier is 10 tons more.

    However, if the matter involved a large space apparatus weighing 20 tons, two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million. One Proton can deliver a 23-ton object for $100-120 million. Therefore, using two Falcon-9s is more advantageous than one Proton, writes Vzglyad.

    Someone is channelling Musks propaganda as this is the usual hyper-optimistic fan-boi garbage.  It remains to be seen if a pre-flown F9 can be reused with anything like the reliability of a brand new unit fresh off the assembly line.  Given the experience with operating "reuseable" shuttles (which in reality were "refurbishable" shuttles requiring huge expenses between launches) I personally doubt that recovery of F9 stage will change the dynamics in a significant way.

    One question that is ignored is this - how many satellite owners will be willing to risk their expensive payloads worth several $100M on a USED launcher?  Isn't it better business sense to go for superior reliability and plug for the new item?  Launcher costs are a small part of a payloads cost in any event.

    Another factor that is regularly ignored is that flying back the booster is only achieved by accepting a huge penalty in weight delivered to orbit.  The core stage needs enough fuel to reverse its course, fly back to its pad, and then control its descent.  This F9 flight delivered a small payload of only 2.2T.  That's a large rocket for such a small payload.  The idea that "two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million" is simply absurd.  There is NO WAY that an F9 with a recoverable 1st stage can lift 13T to LEO.

    Reuseability is a good idea, but I think Musk is barking up the wrong tree on this one.  A large fly-back booster is the better idea as it leverages off conventional aircraft technologies and established maintenance knowledge base of commercial and heavy military aircraft.  Design it with modular propulsion plant so that engines can be changed out after each flight and returned to factory for de-coking and cleanup, retest and recertification, while the flyback vehicle is fitted with another propulsion module and reflown.

    In any case, only time will tell.  The idea that Musk and his F9 will threaten Russia's space industry is simply laughable scare-mongering.

    why? shuttle rs-25 engines were refurbished and reused with 100% reliability (better then soyuz) without major problems ,and they are much bigger and older ! so your story is trash.
    usa private space has got 1 up on russians thats for sure...
    falcon 9 is bit oversized and redundancy is intristic , it uses concept of many engines but with very high thrust to weight ratio (better then famed nk-33), and when launches with 80% full load or lower , it uses spared fuel for landing first stage and its reuse.
    if some engine stops working other compensate with 110% power and you still have successful mission but without reusable stage.
    so your empty jelaous post is jus that . i warned something must change in communist style bueracracies in russian space agency but every rusophyle apologyst was talking how thats not the case.

    Shuttle RS-25s were practically rebuilt after every flight at great expense - that's part of the reason why it cost ~$1B to launch a shuttle. In this instance, reuseability failed comprehensively to deliver on its promise of cheaper access to space.

    You are comparing SpaceX Merlin engine to NK-33s??? Merlin are low-tech gas-generator engines while NK-33 is a closed-cycle master-piece. You are correct that Merlins have a higher power-to-weight ration, but thats because it is simpler and inefficient and dumps energy overboard via its turbine exhaust while the NK-33 wastes nothing. Thats why the NK-33 specific impulse (the TRUE measure of an engines efficiency) is 297 sec at sea level, while the poor little Merlin slouches along at 282... (at vacuum its 331 vs 311).

    I like how you point out that "if some engine stops working".... Tell me the last time a Soyuz or Proton main engine (not vernier) "stopped working"...

    Take a look at the recovered F9 core - its engine bay and lower section is scorched from the heat of its vertical descent (the airflow carries the heat up and around the core rather than down and away as it does during ascent) and if anyone really believes that this recovered stage can simply be wiped down, refuelled and relaunched is quite frankly deluding themselves. At best, the engine bay will need to be dismantled. thermal insulation replaced, and heat-affected metallic components will need to be replaced (consider what an under-strength strut did to the previous F9 flight, now imagine the effect of heat-weakened components in the engine bay which carry the full engine thrust force). They will likely be able to be salvaged and put under heat treatment to return them to the proper temper, but it still adds to the refurb workscope.

    "rusophyle apologyst"???? What the fuck are you smoking? I've said NOTHING that isn't properly considered and defensible. Maybe SpaceX have all the answers and can make a real go out of re-use of returned hardware, but its VERY POSSIBLE that like the shuttle before, the F9 reuseability promises will remain undelivered. Again, only time will tell.
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  kvs on Sat Dec 26, 2015 5:43 am

    Thanks Big_Gazza. The F9 looks like gimmick and not a serious system. Maybe when new materials are discovered/created that
    can be thermally stressed with little effect, then all of these dreams of reusable launchers will come true. Until then, it is all
    theater.
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  Rmf on Sat Dec 26, 2015 9:29 pm

    Big_Gazza wrote:
    Rmf wrote:
    Big_Gazza wrote:
    Project Canada wrote:U.S. space firm’s success may threaten Russian satellites


    The daily newspaper Vzglyad reports that U.S. company SpaceX's success in bringing back to Earth a unit from the Falcon-9 rocket in functioning condition is something really unimaginable. Now the delivery of cargo to near-earth orbit will be at least 10 times cheaper, writes the publication. Does this mean that the Russian Proton and Soyuz satellites will be left without a job?

    Experiments on returning the first unit of the Falcon-9 had been carried out since 2010. Only the eighth attempt, conducted on Dec. 21, 2015, was absolutely successful.

    The cost of the Falcon-9 launch is currently estimated at about $60 million. The unit returned costs $54 million. SpaceX will therefore lose only $6 million on the Falcon-9 if the unit is able to land by itself for further use.

    This could lead to a real revolution in the world space market since the delivery cost of one kilogram of cargo onto the Earth's orbit could fall to $1,100, which on average is 20 times less than on other one-time carriers.

    This would leave the Proton, Soyuz, Arian and Atlas satellites out of work, if it were not for one "but." Despite its variety, the Falcon-9 cannot replace, for example, the Proton, since the load-bearing capacity of the Russian carrier is 10 tons more.

    However, if the matter involved a large space apparatus weighing 20 tons, two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million. One Proton can deliver a 23-ton object for $100-120 million. Therefore, using two Falcon-9s is more advantageous than one Proton, writes Vzglyad.

    Someone is channelling Musks propaganda as this is the usual hyper-optimistic fan-boi garbage.  It remains to be seen if a pre-flown F9 can be reused with anything like the reliability of a brand new unit fresh off the assembly line.  Given the experience with operating "reuseable" shuttles (which in reality were "refurbishable" shuttles requiring huge expenses between launches) I personally doubt that recovery of F9 stage will change the dynamics in a significant way.

    One question that is ignored is this - how many satellite owners will be willing to risk their expensive payloads worth several $100M on a USED launcher?  Isn't it better business sense to go for superior reliability and plug for the new item?  Launcher costs are a small part of a payloads cost in any event.

    Another factor that is regularly ignored is that flying back the booster is only achieved by accepting a huge penalty in weight delivered to orbit.  The core stage needs enough fuel to reverse its course, fly back to its pad, and then control its descent.  This F9 flight delivered a small payload of only 2.2T.  That's a large rocket for such a small payload.  The idea that "two Falcon-9s could deliver a 26-ton object into orbit at a cost of $12 million" is simply absurd.  There is NO WAY that an F9 with a recoverable 1st stage can lift 13T to LEO.

    Reuseability is a good idea, but I think Musk is barking up the wrong tree on this one.  A large fly-back booster is the better idea as it leverages off conventional aircraft technologies and established maintenance knowledge base of commercial and heavy military aircraft.  Design it with modular propulsion plant so that engines can be changed out after each flight and returned to factory for de-coking and cleanup, retest and recertification, while the flyback vehicle is fitted with another propulsion module and reflown.

    In any case, only time will tell.  The idea that Musk and his F9 will threaten Russia's space industry is simply laughable scare-mongering.

    why? shuttle rs-25 engines were refurbished and reused with 100% reliability (better then soyuz) without major problems ,and they are much bigger and older ! so your story is trash.
    usa private space has got 1 up on russians thats for sure...
    falcon 9 is bit oversized and redundancy is intristic , it uses concept of many engines but with very high thrust to weight ratio (better then famed nk-33), and when launches with 80% full load or lower , it uses spared fuel for landing first stage and its reuse.
    if some engine stops working other compensate with 110% power and you still have successful mission but without reusable stage.
    so your empty jelaous post is jus that . i warned something must change in communist style bueracracies in russian space agency but every rusophyle apologyst was talking how thats not the case.

    Shuttle RS-25s were practically rebuilt after every flight at great expense - that's part of the reason why it cost ~$1B to launch a shuttle. In this instance, reuseability failed comprehensively to deliver on its promise of cheaper access to space.

    You are comparing SpaceX Merlin engine to NK-33s???  Merlin are low-tech gas-generator engines while NK-33 is a closed-cycle master-piece.  You are correct that Merlins have a higher power-to-weight ration, but thats because it is simpler and inefficient and dumps energy overboard via its turbine exhaust while the NK-33 wastes nothing.  Thats why the NK-33 specific impulse (the TRUE measure of an engines efficiency) is 297 sec at sea level, while the poor little Merlin slouches along at 282... (at vacuum its 331 vs 311).

    I like how you point out that "if some engine stops working"....  Tell me the last time a Soyuz or Proton main engine (not vernier) "stopped working"...

    Take a look at the recovered F9 core - its engine bay and lower section is scorched from the heat of its vertical descent (the airflow carries the heat up and around the core rather than down and away as it does during ascent) and if anyone really believes that this recovered stage can simply be wiped down, refuelled and relaunched is quite frankly deluding themselves. At best, the engine bay will need to be dismantled. thermal insulation replaced, and heat-affected metallic components will need to be replaced (consider what an under-strength strut did to the previous F9 flight, now imagine the effect of heat-weakened components in the engine bay which carry the full engine thrust force).  They will likely be able to be salvaged and put under heat treatment to return them to the proper temper, but it still adds to the refurb workscope.

    "rusophyle apologyst"????  What the fuck are you smoking?  I've said NOTHING that isn't properly considered and defensible.  Maybe SpaceX have all the answers and can make a real go out of re-use of returned hardware, but its VERY POSSIBLE that like the shuttle before, the F9 reuseability promises will remain undelivered.  Again, only time will tell.
    thanks for nothing that is. rs-25 were man-rated and that increased costs much more then usual , also used older technology. this is something new and well thought out.
    wrong , its different concept , merlin d uses- lower chamber pressure and simpler gas generator, safer direct injection instead of showerplate ,and thus lighter ,cheaper ,and safer ,+ reusable engine because its componenets are not stressed mechanicaly as other engines.
     
                                 ....  ISP
    RD-180 26,700 kPa 338
    NK-33 14,500 kPa 331
    Merlin 1D 9,700  kPa 311

    their ""loss"" of only less then 10% ISP for all that gain in other areas is actually  impressive!!
    Wrong again ,its core stage on return is empty of fuel so it uses only 1 of 9 engines to land. ahahahaha...
    and even that 1 is refurbished withour problem you dont need much thrust for empty core stage and youre going down not lifting anyway ,its black from coal dirt deposit and its nothing.
    but continue russophyle apologyst....
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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

    Post  PapaDragon on Sat Dec 26, 2015 11:38 pm

    Rmf wrote:............................................
    thanks for nothing that is. rs-25 were man-rated and that increased costs much more then usual , also used older technology. this is something new and well thought out.
    wrong , its different concept , merlin d uses- lower chamber pressure and simpler gas generator, safer direct injection instead of showerplate ,and thus lighter ,cheaper ,and safer ,+ reusable engine because its componenets are not stressed mechanicaly as other engines.
     
                                 ....  ISP
    RD-180 26,700 kPa 338
    NK-33 14,500 kPa 331
    Merlin 1D 9,700  kPa 311

    their ""loss"" of only less then 10% ISP for all that gain in other areas is actually  impressive!!
    Wrong again ,its core stage on return is empty of fuel so it uses only 1 of 9 engines to land. ahahahaha...
    and even that 1 is refurbished withour problem you dont need much thrust for empty core stage and youre going down not lifting anyway ,its black from coal dirt deposit and its nothing.
    but continue russophyle apologyst....


    1) Method for engine retrieval used by SpaceX is most complicated and inefficient there is.

    2) Airbag/parachute combo is far cheaper and superior.

    3) Airbag/parachute combo is also what will most likely be used for Angara engine retrieval as announced already by Roskosmos.


    This may be hard to swallow for SpaceX fanboy like yourself but by all criteria SpaceX is at most 2nd best launch company in USA.

    We know you want some of that Elon's musk but he is simply No.2

    http://comedycentral.mtvnimages.com/images/shows/south-park/clip-thumbnails/season-11/1109/south-park-s11e09c14-bono-is-crap-16x9.jpg?


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    Re: NASA Launch Vehicles and Spacecraft: Discussion & News

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