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Thread: Why NASA still waits to adopt the ready available Ariane5 to launch the CEV capsule?

  1. #31
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    CEV/SM mass resized

    .

    latest news talks of a SM resizing and a CEV/SM mass reduction of 6500 lbs.

    with the new reduced weight the CEV/SM may MATCH exactly the Ariane5 payload without any upgrade to the rocket nor any further reduction of the CEV

    a very good idea may be to launch ALL ISS/orbital CEVs only with the Ariane5 (to save time and money) and upgrade the Ares-V to launch the full moon-hardware with a single rocket, like Apollo

    .

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doodler
    Either way you slice it, we're paying for someone to develop a man-rated booster, whether its Arianne or something domestic, might as well be something domestic that isn't so sufferable to the vagaries of international relations. One major tiff with the French over some future action that duly offends them, and its possible that our space program could get hamstrung.

    NOT a defensible policy on Capitol Hill.
    It's nice to see that the foundations of the US space program, pork and paranoid xenophobia, are still strong. ;-)

  3. #33
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    Just because millions of Americans despise the French, it doesn't mean we're xenophobic. It just means we despise the French - often for very good reasons. If Europe wants to build their own manned space vehicles, then by all means they're free to do so. Space is big enough for all of us.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Jacks
    Just because millions of Americans despise the French, it doesn't mean we're xenophobic. It just means we despise the French - often for very good reasons. If Europe wants to build their own manned space vehicles, then by all means they're free to do so. Space is big enough for all of us.
    You have to admit that xenophobia was the reason why the US started its space program. Maybe it was called national security, but it's more or less the same concept. Ok, since it was only the USSR I guess I'm streching it a bit.

    But saying we cannot trust people from other countries to do something for us becouse they could stab us in the back at any time... Well, tell me a word that better discribes this attitude than xenophobia.

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    I find the American fixation with a homegrown rocket programme to be hilarious in light of the fact their most significant achievements in rocketry were given to them by a German.

    If NASA could give up their nationalist approach to space travel, they could use Soyuz, but obviously that would just be too much for American pride.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Damburger
    I find the American fixation with a homegrown rocket programme to be hilarious in light of the fact their most significant achievements in rocketry were given to them by a German.
    As opposed to our Homogenious native society? (he says sarcastically).
    Quote Originally Posted by Damburger
    If NASA could give up their nationalist approach to space travel, they could use Soyuz, but obviously that would just be too much for American pride.
    I think it's more of an issue of options. No other countries are embarking on a multi-national manned launch vehicle, so why is it always up to NASA?
    There is lots of cooperation of NASA with other space technology, but when it comes up to sending a life in space the issue gets a little more delicate. Allowances and cooperation need to be much more solid since any risk is now major, not just a matter of an expensive hardwar loss.

  7. #37
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    If NASA could give up their nationalist approach to space travel, they could use Soyuz, but obviously that would just be too much for American pride.

    In case you didn't notice, but NASA did use Soyuz for the launches to the ISS following the Columbia accident. From Feb 2003 until this month, Soyuz was used to send every new crew (including Americans) to the ISS.

    It's easy for some people to poo-poo national security, especially if they're from other countries (most of Western Europe) that have had the benefit of not having to pay most of the cost of their own security. The French have proven at best unreliable "allies". Personally, I trust the Russians more than the French, and the Poles, Chechs, and other former Warsaw Pact countries more than the Russians.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eckelston
    It's nice to see that the foundations of the US space program, pork and paranoid xenophobia, are still strong. ;-)
    Innovative globalization ain't coming out of a gummint program in this here country. Look how long it took the US to come around on compatable ammunition with its NATO partners, and look how long it took the US to develop a fully compatable and common military fighter with the rest of its allies. National pride makes any government program a lone wolf by the very nature of its desire to demonstrate that "we have the capability".


    Now, civilian space programs? That's a different basket of oranges altogether. Government programs have the benefit of a budget which (in theory) places them above the constraint of cost effectiveness (within limits). Civvie programs will likely look at cost effectiveness and availability as a factor in program design.

    Look at Bigelow's recent test flight. The Genesis was intended to launch on a Falcon booster, but due to their problems, it was nothing more than a cost of doing business to pick up the phone and begin arrangements for a Dnepr launch. Bigelow's loyalty is to the bottom line of his company, which includes "get off the ground by any means available for the right price". So for him, using a Russian/Ukrainian booster was nothing, where it would be a cold day in Satan's sauna before you'd ever see an Orion loft on an Energia.

    Look at the recent issues with the shuttle. You don't think every launch of a Soyuz we had to pay for to put our astronauts on board the ISS because our system was grounded wasn't a proverbial sweep to the knee?

    Its mocked sometimes, but in some ways, the liberation of spaceflight from nationalist pride by replacing it with a semi-slavish devotion to the profit margin is going to work well for civvie spaceflight. Pride will come solely with successful missions, and will not be a matter of who's flag is on the wing.

  9. #39
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    http://www.space.com/news/060724_cev_needsrevision.html

    This article pretty much backs up Doodler's opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cugel
    http://www.space.com/news/060724_cev_needsrevision.html

    This article pretty much backs up Doodler's opinion.
    Interesting read, however, I also think if the think tanks want to subcontract spacecraft design and operations to the civilians, NASA is well within its rights to see a working vehicle first, otherwise let them continue developing their own.

    Part of me is thinking that with the military still having a finger in NASA's operations, there's going to be some kind of national security interest in the development and progression of a purely government controlled manned spacecraft. Prior to Challenger's destruction, the military had a few payloads go up under their aegis. Its not completely out of line to think that the Air Force in particular might start looking at space operations once NASA has a reliable vehicle under its belt.

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doodler
    Look at the recent issues with the shuttle. You don't think every launch of a Soyuz we had to pay for to put our astronauts on board the ISS because our system was grounded wasn't a proverbial sweep to the knee?
    Incidentally it cost a fraction of what a Shuttle launch would have.
    I guess what I'm trying to say that making human spaceflight a question of pride is both a blessing and a curse. It provides resources but it also lead to bad strategic decisions, like keeping the shuttle in flight at all cost.

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eckelston
    Incidentally it cost a fraction of what a Shuttle launch would have.
    True, even though it required cutting back to a 2 man crew, it was a major cost savings over the shuttle. The real crying shame is lacking an intermediate vehicle between a 3 man capsule and a 7 man shuttle. What I was meaning though, is that it was a hit to the pride to be forced to hitch rides while the shuttles were grounded.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eckelston
    I guess what I'm trying to say that making human spaceflight a question of pride is both a blessing and a curse. It provides resources but it also lead to bad strategic decisions, like keeping the shuttle in flight at all cost.
    True, which is why its not appropriate to say that we should go all out corporate or all out government. Like anything, its a matter of balance. Government funds are better for truly experimental ships, like the shuttles, which break ground technologically at the expense of profitability. Plus for pure research and showing the flag, so to speak. Where the more mundane operations that have to run like clockwork are better in the province of corporations which are better suited to taking a working technology and refining it to the nth degree for efficiency.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doodler
    True, which is why its not appropriate to say that we should go all out corporate or all out government. Like anything, its a matter of balance. Government funds are better for truly experimental ships, like the shuttles, which break ground technologically at the expense of profitability. Plus for pure research and showing the flag, so to speak. Where the more mundane operations that have to run like clockwork are better in the province of corporations which are better suited to taking a working technology and refining it to the nth degree for efficiency.
    This must be true but unfortunatelly in recent years there has been too much of showing the flag and not enough basic research. And I don't mean planetary science or astronomy either, I mean research which would ultimately enable us to extend human presence in the solar system (and beyond).

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eckelston
    This must be true but unfortunatelly in recent years there has been too much of showing the flag and not enough basic research. And I don't mean planetary science or astronomy either, I mean research which would ultimately enable us to extend human presence in the solar system (and beyond).
    I personally feel that's going to come out of a company that gets serious about orbital manufacturing. If you've got the workers willing to do it, wouldn't be more cost effective to send up one manned flight every year, or two years, with less expensive unmanned flights for material return, than to need to send up a manned crew every six months?

    On the one hand, there's certainly the fear of them keeping that technology proprietary, on the other hand, the licensing rights to market it to competitors or others with non-conflicting interests in orbital living...

    That's one I wanna see the boiz in Vegas lay odds on.

  15. #45
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    .

    thanks to low cost workforce and engineers, China can launch a Shenzhou for cents...

    well... just imagine that China (like Russia does with military hardware) will decide to build the "Shenzhou system" (capsule, rocket, launch pad, know how, etc.) in hundreds units and sell them (thanks to mass production) at the very low price of $30M to ALL the countries that want a manned space program... Greece, Niger, Chile, Egypt, Afghanistan, Seychelles... ALL discussion about (american and european) "national pride" and "security" will become (simply) RIDICULOUS

    and don't foget that China will build a little space station for three astronauts at a cost around $300M... 1/300th the price of the ISS !!!

    mass produced, the "CISS" may cost $100M so also the Bangladesh can buy one!

    .

  16. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Jacks
    In case you didn't notice, but NASA did use Soyuz for the launches to the ISS following the Columbia accident. From Feb 2003 until this month, Soyuz was used to send every new crew (including Americans) to the ISS.
    NASA was buying tickets on Soyuz. I'm talking about buying the system and launching it themselves, as the ESA is going to do. If it goes through, the ESA will have a manned launch system that is proven, much cheaper than the shuttle, and which they didn't have to spend billions developing. What stops NASA doing the same sort of thing?

    It's easy for some people to poo-poo national security, especially if they're from other countries (most of Western Europe) that have had the benefit of not having to pay most of the cost of their own security. The French have proven at best unreliable "allies". Personally, I trust the Russians more than the French, and the Poles, Chechs, and other former Warsaw Pact countries more than the Russians.
    Charming. The old you'ld-be-speaking-Russian/German-if-it-wasn't-for-us argument. Insulting, historically inaccurate, and a fairly good illustration of whats standing in the way of international cooperation in space.

  17. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaetanomarano
    .

    thanks to low cost workforce and engineers, China can launch a Shenzhou for cents...

    well... just imagine that China (like Russia does with military hardware) will decide to build the "Shenzhou system" (capsule, rocket, launch pad, know how, etc.) in hundreds units and sell them (thanks to mass production) at the very low price of $30M to ALL the countries that want a manned space program... Greece, Niger, Chile, Egypt, Afghanistan, Seychelles... ALL discussion about (american and european) "national pride" and "security" will become (simply) RIDICULOUS

    and don't foget that China will build a little space station for three astronauts at a cost around $300M... 1/300th the price of the ISS !!!

    mass produced, the "CISS" may cost $100M so also the Bangladesh can buy one!

    .
    If China can churn out Shenzhou's for 'cents', why are they only launching them every 18 months - 2 years? AFAIK the Chinese space program is faltering from a lack of political will and funds. Shenzhou seems to be a good design, but does China actually have the inclination to use it properly?

  18. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher
    I think it's more of an issue of options. No other countries are embarking on a multi-national manned launch vehicle, so why is it always up to NASA?
    What are you on about?

    1. CEV isn't international. Jean-Jacques Dordain has said "I have been told by Mike Griffin and Marburger that the CEV is not for international cooperation"

    2. Russian and the ESA are trying to work out an agreement to develop a new launch system between them. Even if they do not share the system with anyone else, it will still be international by definition.

  19. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Damburger
    If China can churn out Shenzhou's for 'cents', why are they only launching them every 18 months - 2 years? AFAIK the Chinese space program is faltering from a lack of political will and funds. Shenzhou seems to be a good design, but does China actually have the inclination to use it properly?
    one Shenzhou launch costs $110M and the total budget of China space agency is $200M

    but the new budget will be $500 per year and, with the very fast grow of China economy, I think the annual budget for space will be of billion$$$ per year after 2010

    I think the China space program is STORNGLY SUPPORTED by politics (for national prestige and strategic reasons) but they can't launch now too much Shenzhou

    we must wait 5+ years to know the REAL power of China in space

    .

  20. #50
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    NASA was buying tickets on Soyuz. I'm talking about buying the system and launching it themselves, as the ESA is going to do. If it goes through, the ESA will have a manned launch system that is proven, much cheaper than the shuttle, and which they didn't have to spend billions developing. What stops NASA doing the same sort of thing?


    It would cost a fortune for NASA to directly buy and launch Soyuz capsules. Unless you're willing to develop a new booster for the capsule or man-rate the EELVs, the best way to launch a Soyuz capsule is on the very capable Soyuz booster. You'd need to create the proper launch infrastructure, including launch pads, booster processing facilities, payload processing facilities, mission control systems, fueling systems, and the like. It would cost billions. Instead, we can hire the Russians to launch astronauts on Soyuz capsules for millions. All of that infrastructure would get you the same reliable but limited capability of the Soyuz capsules. Your contention is simply absurd and shows a serious lack of space knowledge typical of someone of your stripe. But hey, what's practicality with the higher purpose of "international cooperation" is at stake, eh?

  21. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaetanomarano
    one Shenzhou launch costs $110M and the total budget of China space agency is $200M.
    Got a cite on those numbers?

    Not sure if you've been paying attention to financial news lately, but China's economic growth makes the pre-2001 tech bubble economy in the US look positively frigid in comparison. Dismissing for the moment all the philosophical and political claptrap, they've actually gotten incredibly savvy at generating cash through market economics, so I'll be willing to bet they've got easily in the billions to invest in spaceflight if they want to. Their caution is actually rather pragmatic. Manned capsules are extremely new technology to them, and the price of failure in their eyes is entirely too high to rush into this. The cost for launch is low because they've adapted their existing ICBM and satellite launch systems to support the new manned program, so the savings are a result of working from existing bedrock technology, rather than inventing a new wheel. They'll keep the launches at a slow pace they're comfortable with for now, and when the time comes that they start launching more ships, you can bet your bankroll it will be because they feel they've got their system locked.

    I don't particularly care for the Chinese government, but I do respect the fact that they are extremely capable of gauging risks and benefits of their actions. Despite having done some pretty dispicable things, yet they've demonstrated some pretty remarkable management skills when it comes to cultivating investments. The nature of their system makes them draconian, and more than a little paranoid about wild cards and unknowns. Given that, its not surprising that they are taking VERY measured steps into the very new realm of manned spaceflight.

  22. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Jacks
    NASA was buying tickets on Soyuz. I'm talking about buying the system and launching it themselves, as the ESA is going to do. If it goes through, the ESA will have a manned launch system that is proven, much cheaper than the shuttle, and which they didn't have to spend billions developing. What stops NASA doing the same sort of thing?


    It would cost a fortune for NASA to directly buy and launch Soyuz capsules. Unless you're willing to develop a new booster for the capsule or man-rate the EELVs, the best way to launch a Soyuz capsule is on the very capable Soyuz booster. You'd need to create the proper launch infrastructure, including launch pads, booster processing facilities, payload processing facilities, mission control systems, fueling systems, and the like. It would cost billions. Instead, we can hire the Russians to launch astronauts on Soyuz capsules for millions. All of that infrastructure would get you the same reliable but limited capability of the Soyuz capsules. Your contention is simply absurd and shows a serious lack of space knowledge typical of someone of your stripe. But hey, what's practicality with the higher purpose of "international cooperation" is at stake, eh?
    I was talking about getting the whole Soyuz launch system. You see, Soyuz is the name of a launcher as well as a capsule. Try to bear that in mind next time you mouth off.

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    The ultimate hurdle to the US using, licensing, building, buying, and launching Soyuz spacecraft is red tape. All the nonsense about transfers of technology, ballistic missile technology transfers (something which has already been a hurdle for the US to help finance launches of Soyuz), treaties, tariffs and whatnot will serve to drive the cost of US launched Soyuz craft through the roof.

    The cost of new hardware isn't an easy pill to swallow, but it comes without the real horse pill of bureaucratic wrangling attached, beyond providing a budget.

    We can fistfight out the philosophical aspects of international cooperation till we're virtually black and blue, but the reality is, the US is going to build and operate its own domestically built spacecraft on domestically built boosters, whether we happen to think its the most efficient course of action or not.

  24. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doodler
    ...bubble economy...
    China economy is not like the USA/Europe 100+ years capitalist economy but it's NOT a "bubble"

    to-day, they use an old space technology but the knowlendge is available everywhere in the world and China has a growing army of engineers able to understand, implement and upgrade that technology

    we will not see too much in the next 5+ years, since they are in the early days, but, when they will be ready, the China's effort in new spacecrafts and spaceflights will (literally) "EXPLODE"

    .
    Last edited by gaetanomarano; 2006-Jul-27 at 04:00 PM.

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    NASA version of Ariane5

    .

    probably they (NASA) have not read my June 30 article... www.gaetanomarano.it/articles/010arianecev.html ...nor this thread (and my posts in other forums) but (now) NASA appears to have a "stick" alternative that looks very close to Ariane5... www.nasaspaceflight.com/content/?cid=4670

    however, since there are NO official NASA claims so far, the new Ares-I may be only a NASAspaceflight drawing to sell more L2 subscriptions....

    .

  26. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaetanomarano
    ...China's effort in new spacecrafts and spaceflights will (literally) "EXPLODE"
    Depending on the way you read that...could be good, could be bad
    Quote Originally Posted by gaetanomarano
    ...have not read my June 30 article... www.gaetanomarano.it/articles/010arianecev.html ...nor this thread...
    Could be that they read it and disregarded it. Almost in the same way that you are doing with SOME of the information that is being presented in this thread.

  27. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher
    Depending on the way you read that...could be good, could be bad
    the good way, of course...

    ...in the same way that you are doing with SOME of the information that is being presented in this thread...
    if it's a 100% NASA alternative... why they have not published in the ESAS plan... nor announced in the last seven months?

    however, the "NASAriane-I" needs years and billion$ to born, while the Ariane5 already exists

    .

  28. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaetanomarano
    however, the "NASAriane-I" needs years and billion$ to born, while the Ariane5 already exists
    But will need billions to be adapted to the type of mission that NASA wants to do.
    What about primary mission. The crew portion of the program is designed ONLY to get personel into and out of orbit.
    So the most efficient job in the long run with this design is to have a rocket that ONLY gets the crew into orbit.
    Payloads will be lifted by the craft that is most suited to that payload. And I'm sure Ariane might be part of that picture in some way, but there are no current missions that fit.
    Although a mission with seperate payload and a crew vehicles sounds like a waste, you need the same amount of fuel (weight) and ship to get the payload up. But having the right ship for the right job will lower the cost and should (time will tell) even things out.
    Basically, it is a modular approach. And your complaint is on one module.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher
    ...the most efficient job in the long run with this design is to have a rocket that ONLY gets the crew into orbit...
    in my articles and posts I suggest to launch the orbital-CEV with the Ariane5 (to be ready just after the Shuttle retirement) and launch the moon missions with a Single Launch Vehicle Apollo-style

    just a note about the NASAriane-I... if it's a true NASA project, that means NASA thinks an Ariane5-like may be a safe and reliable rocket to launch the CEV... of course, the Ariane5 must be man-rated... like the NASAriane-I...

    .

  30. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaetanomarano
    in my articles and posts I suggest to launch the orbital-CEV with the Ariane5 ...
    Do you know that this is a DISCUSSION board. Pointing to a general article on another website to answer specific issues is not a discussion. I have read you articles and posts, and they do not address some specific issues that have been brought forth in these posts.

    A new crew capsule needs to be developed no matter what the launch vehicle is.

    And there are thousands of engineers out there that can explain the detailed numbers.

    And; aside from all that, NASA is not only about launches, it is about new technology, development and research. Designing a new craft, is part of that. And just because it LOOKs like alot of other things, does not mean the technology is the same.

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