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Thread: American human space capsule

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    American human space capsule

    America right now has three human space capsules under development. One by NASA. one more by SpaceX and the last one by Boeing. Does anyone know their capabilities. Example, Orion and Dragon by SpaceX will be capable of being used in BEO. Will Boeing's be able to do that? What are their similarities and differences?

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    Boeing is gearing up with its development of Starliner.

    http://www.universetoday.com/120760/...-space-center/

    This maiden test version of ‘Starliner’ is known as the structural test article and plays a critical role serving as the pathfinder vehicle to validate the manufacturing and processing methods for the production of all the operational spacecraft that will follow in the future – and eventually carry crews of four astronauts aloft to the space station in 2017.

    The structural test article, also known as the STA, is currently being built inside the C3PF using the same techniques and processes planned for the operational spacecraft that will carry astronauts to the International Space Station for NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, said Danom Buck, manager of Boeing’s Manufacturing and Engineering team at KSC, during a media tour in December which included Universe Today. See my photos above and below.

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    Engineers from NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, and Boeing dropped a full-scale test article of the company’s CST-100 Starliner into Langley’s 20-foot-deep Hydro Impact Basin.

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    Video of CST-100 Starliner being dropped into water - see article above.

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    2 minute video of US astronaut Suni Williams talking about the commercial crew space crafts.

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    According to this report, the first manned flight by Boeing has slipped to 2018. This puts SpaceX ahead in the race to put an astronaut into space by a private company for now.

    http://www.popsci.com/spacex-will-li...uts-into-space

    Since NASA retired the space shuttle in 2011, American astronauts have been hitching a ride with Russia to the space station. That's adding up to be quite expensive--about $70 million per seat, and rising. Meanwhile, NASA is investing in private companies that it hopes will bring human-rated launch capabilities back to the U.S. The space agency has set its hopes on two companies: Boeing, a long-time friend of NASA, and SpaceX, which should require no introduction.

    The plan was for both SpaceX and Boeing to launch their first crewed flights to the space station in 2017. Although NASA has said it was unsure who would get to carry astronauts first, SpaceX's uncrewed version of the Dragon capsule is regularly carrying cargo deliveries to the International Space Station, while Boeing's Starliner hasn't yet flown to space.

    Now Boeing doesn't expect to get to those uncrewed test flights until 2017, pushing the company's first crewed launches to 2018 at the earliest. Geekwire reports the company is having problems with the mass and aeroacoustics of its spacecraft.

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    This article says that SpaceX is running one year behind schedule to send humans to space. If that turns out to be correct then this can only happen end 2017.

    http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/05/...ew/#more-58486

    SpaceX’s commercial crew program is running more than a year behind schedule on the Commercial Crew program it is performing for NASA.

    Garrett Reisman, SpaceX’s Director of Crew Operations, said on Tuesday that an automated flight test of the Crew Dragon vehicle to the International Space Station (ISS) has slipped into the second quarter of 2017. (Spaceflight Now has the mission listed for May 2017.) It was scheduled to occur in March 2016 under the contract NASA awarded to SpaceX in September 2014.

    The original schedule showed a test flight to the station with crew occurring in October 2016, some seven months after the automated one. Once testing is complete, SpaceX would begin ferrying astronauts to ISS on a commercial basis. The company has been awarded a minimum of six commercial missions.

    During an appearance at the Space Tech Expo in Pasadena, Calif. Reisman showed a slide that indicated SpaceX had completely roughly half of the 18 milestones required to complete the Crew Dragon development program..

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    More information on the status of Boeing and SpaceX's commercial crew program.

    http://spaceflightnow.com/2016/05/25...-in-late-2017/

    Boeing announced earlier this month that its first piloted CST-100 Starliner flight with two test astronauts on-board has slipped from October 2017 to February 2018. That will be preceded by an abort test using the capsule’s pusher escape engines at White Sands, New Mexico, in October 2017 and a trip to the space station by an unoccupied CST-100 in December 2017, Boeing officials said.

    Reed was less specific Tuesday on a timetable for Crew Dragon test flights.

    Earlier this year, SpaceX quietly delayed its initial Crew Dragon mission without astronauts from late 2016 to May 2017. A NASA official confirmed the updated schedule in a March presentation to the agency’s advisory council.

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    As long as it happens before we're able to send humans to Woolwich, it'll be okay.

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    A look at the progress of Boeing and SpaceX on their commercial crew spacecraft.

    http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/mi...ed-spacecraft/

    Boeing and SpaceX recently presented updates on the progress with their space vessels. The two aerospace firms are working to be the successors to the long-running Space Shuttle Program and the answer to America’s current reliance on Russian space systems for placing astronauts in Earth orbit.

    “Astronauts will once again fly from the Space Coast,” said Lisa Colloredo, associate manager of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, during a May 24 panel kicking off the 44th Space Congress in Cape Canaveral, Florida.

    In September 2014, NASA awarded Boeing and SpaceX with a Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contract worth an estimated total of some $6.8 billion. With this contract the two aerospace companies are to complete development of their CST-100 Starliner and Crew Dragon spacecraft, respectively, to transport astronauts to and from the International Space Station (ISS) by the end of 2017.

    Boeing recently confirmed a slip of its first crew test flight to February 2018. Earlier this year, SpaceX also delayed its initial Crew Dragon unmanned mission from late 2016 to May 2017.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    As long as it happens before we're able to send humans to Woolwich, it'll be okay.
    The one in Maine or the one in the Royal Borough of Greenwich?

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    Quote Originally Posted by swampyankee View Post
    The one in Maine or the one in the Royal Borough of Greenwich?
    The latter. If they get Dragon launched with people in before 2018, they'll beat the opening of Crossrail (which started work way back in 2009) and so demonstrate it is easier to put people into space 400km above us, than put people 25m below us.

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    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    Seems to be pretty much the "workpod" idea that is quite common in SF, surprised that there hasn't been more interest in looking into it previously. Though there hasn't been any real need for such a device previously (and arguably there isn't much of one now) which would tend to divert interest elsewhere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    The latter. If they get Dragon launched with people in before 2018, they'll beat the opening of Crossrail (which started work way back in 2009) and so demonstrate it is easier to put people into space 400km above us, than put people 25m below us.
    I can't come up with a rejoinder that won't get me banned for political snarkery.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    America right now has three human space capsules under development. One by NASA. one more by SpaceX and the last one by Boeing. Does anyone know their capabilities. Example, Orion and Dragon by SpaceX will be capable of being used in BEO. Will Boeing's be able to do that? What are their similarities and differences?
    When I started this thread, I referred to three human space capsules under development but turns out I was wrong. There is 7 as this article shows.

    http://www.popsci.com/want-to-be-an-...chariots-await

    Private companies like SpaceX, Boeing, and Sierra Nevada Corp are already signed up to carry cargo to the International Space Station. Later, they'll also build and fly their own human-capable spacecraft, while NASA itself focuses on building a vehicle that will eventually take humans to Mars.

    While the commercial industry crowds the skies with a lineup of upcoming vehicles, the space tourism industry is not too far behind. Billionaire titans Jeff Bezos and Sir Richard Branson are quickly on their way to providing life-changing passenger flights to the edges of space. Even a smaller outfit, World View, is competing for a slice of what will become a lucrative industry. In a few years, it won’t be a question of IF you’ll ever become astronaut, but WHEN (and for what price). These are the vehicles that could take you there.

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    The author left out one more. The Red Dragon which SpaceX is planing to go to Mars with.

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    Boeing, SpaceX Continue to Make Progress on Crew Vehicles

    http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/06/...es/#more-58608

    Halfway through the pivotal 2016 year, the companies building the next generation of human-rated spacecraft and launch vehicles are testing systems in more demanding, flight-like environments. Boeing and SpaceX are manufacturing the systems that will return America’s human launch capability, while they simultaneously build and modify launch facilities, and complete mission simulators. All while continuing to test and refine their designs, and analyze the results to ensure they are meeting NASA’s requirements.

    “We knew 2016 would be a critical year as Boeing and SpaceX build qualification and flight hardware, and test the integrated systems to ensure the rockets and spacecraft function as designed,” said Kathy Lueders, manager of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. “Their careful design, analysis and early prototype testing during the last several years has put us on the right course, and now we are excited to see flight hardware coming together. The companies are excited, too, but we know there are many steps ahead to successfully and safely complete these flight tests and begin operational missions to the International Space Station.”

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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    The latter. If they get Dragon launched with people in before 2018, they'll beat the opening of Crossrail (which started work way back in 2009) and so demonstrate it is easier to put people into space 400km above us, than put people 25m below us.
    Aah...sort of like the Big Dig.

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    Astronauts, Mission Control Simulate Starliner Commercial Crew Flight.

    http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/06/...l-crew-flight/

    Commercial Crew Program astronauts Bob Behnken and Eric Boe joined flight director Richard Jones and his NASA/Boeing flight control team in the first Mission Control Center, Houston, on-console simulation of Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner launch, climb to orbit and post-orbital insertion timeline.

    The ascent simulation included a training team inserting problems remotely from a nearby building, which allowed the team to follow checklists and procedures to solve issues that could arise during a dynamic, real-flight situation.

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    Boeing is targeting February 2018 for its maiden flight of a crewed Starliner.

    http://www.universetoday.com/129548/...february-2018/

    Boeing thinks it can have its Starliner spacecraft ready to fly crewed missions by February, 2018. This is 4 months later than the previous date of October 2017. It isn’t yet clear what this will mean in Boeing’s race against SpaceX to relieve NASA’s dependence on Russian transportation to the ISS.

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    Boeing has moved from power point presentation of Starliner to start construction of the 1st spacecraft.

    http://www.universetoday.com/129356/...edy-spaceport/

    The next generation of America’s human spaceships is rapidly taking shape and “making fantastic progress” at the Kennedy Space Center as Boeing and NASA showcased the start of assembly of the first flightworthy version of the aerospace giants Starliner crew taxi vehicle to the media last week. Starliner will ferry NASA astronauts to and from the International Space Station (ISS) by early 2018.

    “We are making fantastic progress across the board,” John Mulholland, vice president and program manager of Boeing Commercial Programs, told Universe Today at the July 26 media event in Boeing’s new Starliner factory.

    “It so nice to move from design to firm configuration, which was an incredibly important milestone, to now moving into the integrated qual phase of the campaign.”

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    Boeing Commercial Crew Milestone Status

    http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/09/...estone-status/

    In 2016, Boeing amended its schedule to reflect receipt of certification in January 2018 and the first certified flight in the spring of 2018. Notwithstanding the contractors’ optimism, based on the information we gathered during our audit, we believe it unlikely that either Boeing or SpaceX will achieve certified, crewed flight to the ISS until late 2018.

    Boeing’s CCtCap contract initially included 23 milestones ranging from the establishment of an original requirements baseline to the final vehicle certification. Within the first 2 years of the contract, Boeing and NASA modified the contract to separate three of the milestones into multiple segments, replace one milestone, and add seven milestones related to NASA-imposed software upgrades, landing qualification tests, and hardware modifications. These modifications increased the number of milestones to 34 and the total contract value by approximately $46 million.

    As of June 2016, Boeing had completed 15 of the 34 milestones (44 percent) necessary to achieve certification and was scheduled to receive up to $1.067 billion (25 percent) of the total contract value in payment.

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    SpaceX Commercial Crew Milestone Status

    http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/09/...estone-status/

    SpaceX’s CCtCap contract initially included 18 milestones. During the first year of the contract, SpaceX and NASA agreed to separate SpaceX’s Propulsion Module Testing and Critical Design Review into multiple segments, which increased the total milestones to 21.

    As of June 2016, SpaceX had completed eight milestones (38 percent), five less than planned under the original schedule, and received $469 million (18 percent) of the total contract value.

    SpaceX remains optimistic about its ability to meet the contract schedule and continues to work toward late 2017 for its first certified crewed mission. Notwithstanding the contractors’ optimism, based on the information we gathered during our audit, we believe it unlikely that either Boeing or SpaceX will achieve certified, crewed flight to the ISS until late 2018.

    Editor’s Note: SpaceX also has a milestone left over from its earlier Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) contract.

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    Now SpaceX has joined Boeing and announced that the 1st crew flight of their dragon capsule has been delayed until 2018.

    http://spaceflightnow.com/2016/12/13...-back-to-2018/

    Astronauts will not fly to the International Space Station on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spaceship until at least May 2018, NASA said this week, missing a previous target launch date at the end of next year.

    The delay was expected after Boeing, which is also developing a commercial crew capsule, announced earlier this year its spaceship would not be ready for crew ferry missions until at least mid-2018, and after a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket exploded during a ground test on a Cape Canaveral launch pad in September.

    In an emailed statement, SpaceX said its Crew Dragon development program has stayed on track this year despite the suspension of Falcon 9 launches in the wake of the explosion, but the company said it needs more time to process the outcome of the mishap investigation.

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    Parabolic Arc has put together for us the original target dates for the key milestones and the present targeted dates for both Boeing and SpaceX.

    http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/12/...test-schedule/

    SpaceX has update its commercial crew schedule for the first time in six months. Coupled with Boeing’s update from October, we now have a fully updated timeline for the entire program. Below is the current schedule according to NASA.

    Targeted Flight Test Dates to International Space Station

    SpaceX Demonstration Mission 1 (No Crew): November 2017
    Boeing Orbital Flight Test (No Crew: June 2018
    SpaceX Demonstration Mission 2 (Crew): May 2018
    Boeing Crew Flight Test (Crew): August 2018

    Did SpaceX’s slip its schedule again? You betcha. By about six more months. Will either of these schedules hold? I wouldn’t count on it. Hence the word “targeted.”

    Overall, Boeing is running 15 to 16 months behind schedule on the flight tests from what was indicated in the Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contact it was awarded in 2014. SpaceX is running 19 to 20 months behind schedule.

    Although previous delays have been attributed to under funding by Congress, the delays under the CCtCap contracts have been caused by technical problems and bureaucratic slowness at NASA.

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    The above report was on the optimistic side and 1st test flight might slip into 2019.

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2017...ws-until-2019/

    "Technical troubles likely to delay commercial crew flights until 2019
    Shiny new flight suits not withstanding, 2018 launch dates seem optimistic.

    This week Boeing made a public splash by debuting a new blue spacesuit for astronauts to wear aboard its Starliner spacecraft. What the company did not dwell on as it rolled out “Boeing Blue,” however, was when the lighter, more modern-looking flight suits might be put into action with crewed flights into orbit.

    That is because much work remains to integrate all of Starliner’s various systems, including qualifying them for flight, ensuring their compatibility, and writing and testing software that will make for smooth flying. And Boeing is not alone; its “commercial crew” competitor SpaceX also faces similar technical hurdles with the Dragon V2 spacecraft and the Falcon 9 rocket that will launch it into space.

    Boeing has set a “no earlier than” date of August 2018 for its first crewed test flight, and SpaceX has targeted May 2018. But those dates seem optimistic. Ars spoke to a handful of sources familiar with the commercial crew program this week, and all expressed pessimism about the public timelines the companies have for reaching the launch pad. According to this unofficial analysis, even a single crewed test flight in 2018 by either company now appears unlikely, as teams from both Boeing and SpaceX continue to work through significant technical issues."

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    Last edited by selvaarchi; 2017-Jan-28 at 07:29 AM.
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    NASA needs to provide a backup plan, if the commercial crew programme is delayed further, by the 13th of March this year.

    Wonder how the Trump administration will react if the plan proposed using the Chinese to get to the ISS.

    http://www.spacepolicyonline.com/new...esponse-to-gao

    "NASA has agreed to develop a contingency plan for ensuring astronauts can travel to and from the International Space Station (ISS) in case the commercial crew systems under development by Boeing and SpaceX are further delayed. The action comes in response to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report released today that outlines delays that have occurred already and problems that may result in further schedule slippage. NASA told GAO in writing it would have the backup plan ready by March 13, 2017."

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    In a few hours President Trump is due to give a speech at Kennedy Space Center. Hope is he will announce America's return to the moon.

    https://www.wired.com/2017/02/trump-...ongress-might/

    "ON SATURDAY AFTERNOON inside a hangar at the Melbourne International Airport in Florida, President Trump will hold a campaign-style rally for supporters. That same morning (if all goes as scheduled), about an hour away at the Kennedy Space Center, SpaceX will launch its Falcon 9 commercial crew rocket from Launchpad 39A—the historic site of so many Apollo liftoffs decades ago.

    Coincidence? Perhaps.

    Saturday’s visit puts the president into the orbit of the nascent commercial space industry, and one giant leap away from the hallowed ground of NASA’s glory days. In fact, some space enthusiasts even hope he’ll use the rally to announce a mission to the moon."


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