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Boeing's Starliner


Kryten
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Some content has been removed due to personal remarks, which are not allowed per forum rule 2.2.d.

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  • 4 weeks later...
3 minutes ago, Codraroll said:

Access requires subscription. Could you post a summary of the article?

You just need to accept cookies/European privacy regulations before they accept you in, anyways it's mostly a recap of how Starliner still has no confirmed cause for the stuck valves and no launch until the investigation is resolved. That, and Kathy's comment on how in her guts it won't be this year as well as NASA's remarks of the differences in FRRs safety procedures between Boeing and NASA

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  • 2 weeks later...

I guess that last comment is about the announced end of Atlas production?

I doubt there would be anything that would prevent Starliner from being integrated with Falcon 9. Of course this would limit the desired independent redundancy if both capsules shared only one crew-rated launcher.

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2 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

I guess that last comment is about the announced end of Atlas production?

I doubt there would be anything that would prevent Starliner from being integrated with Falcon 9. Of course this would limit the desired independent redundancy if both capsules shared only one crew-rated launcher.

Starliner is made to be able to be carried by the Falcon 9 as per commercial crew requirements, but I'm confident that limits to "fits within payload weight limitations" and little more. Still, it would definitely be possible to develop a starliner-falcon 9 adapter if for any reason Boeing needed it

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13 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

I guess that last comment is about the announced end of Atlas production?

I doubt there would be anything that would prevent Starliner from being integrated with Falcon 9. Of course this would limit the desired independent redundancy if both capsules shared only one crew-rated launcher.

The first bunch of CST-100 launches have Atlas V's already reserved for them. I saw the number at some point, but it's a large chunk of the remaining 28 Atlas V launches, BTW. Once both capsules are in service, I think the plan is to alternate every 6 months, so even 10 Atlas Vs would keep Starliner flying for pushing 10 years.

 

The only part of Vulcan not crew rated would be the Be-4s, and I thought the whole plan was for those to be crew rated from the start.

Edited by tater
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6 minutes ago, tater said:

The only part of Vulcan not crew rated would be the Be-4s, and I thought the whole plan was for those to be crew rated from the start.

Well, we know "the plan" isn't currently matching "the reality" for the Be-4 or the Starliner.

Anyway, yeah, if the remaining Atlas production is mostly scheduled for Starliner, that probably does mean it would cover a pretty long time.

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6 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

Well, we know "the plan" isn't currently matching "the reality" for the Be-4 or the Starliner.

Anyway, yeah, if the remaining Atlas production is mostly scheduled for Starliner, that probably does mean it would cover a pretty long time.

Obviously BO is behind schedule both for Vulcan and themselves, so many grains of salt. But it was always meant to be crew rated, and I would assume that's a requirement for their contract with ULA (to jump through the appropriate testing/reliability/etc hoops to deliver a crew-rated engine).

I wish I could find the number off hand—I might have posted it up thread, or maybe in the ULA thread...

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The thing is, if you shut down production on a vehicle it is usually because you want to use the factory and people for something else. So does that mean they will build a bunch of Atlas rockets and then mothball them? I really doubt they want to keep the factory going for only building one rocket per year.

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The number I am seeing is 8 Atlas V for Starliner.

OFT-2, CFT, then 6 operational flights.

 

Bruno says any faster transition to Vulcan is "up to our customer," and he had said previously that they would crew rate Vulcan when a customer asks them to.

 

Edited by tater
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25 minutes ago, Beccab said:

"Customer" here being NASA obviously

Boeing.

It's a commercial crew vehicle, they can also launch civilian missions with it (they're sort of supposed to, that was the point of commercial crew)

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8 minutes ago, tater said:

Boeing.

It's a commercial crew vehicle, they can also launch civilian missions with it (they're sort of supposed to, that was the point of commercial crew)

I don't think "the point" of commercial crew was to launch "civilian" (I guess you mean non-NASA?) missions. The point was for NASA to be able to buy access to the ISS "off the shelf" from multiple vendors. They don't care who else buys missions or doesn't buy missions.

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22 minutes ago, tater said:

It's a commercial crew vehicle, they can also launch civilian missions with it (they're sort of supposed to, that was the point of commercial crew)

There's no commericial flight scheduled on Starliner as of now, and the only chance of having even one that I see at the moment is it Axiom decides to book starliner too. It's more expensive than crew dragon and has a bad/not excellent reputation.

I doubt there would be any customer other than NASA willing to pay the higher cost of the capsule and crew rating Vulcan, especially if Starliner altas lasts up to 2028. I'm not even sure there will be much Crew Dragon activity by then, possibly only for the Axiom station

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5 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

I don't think "the point" of commercial crew was to launch "civilian" (I guess you mean non-NASA?) missions. The point was for NASA to be able to buy access to the ISS "off the shelf" from multiple vendors. They don't care who else buys missions or doesn't buy missions.

Part of the initial push included also using the vehicles for not-NASA applications.

https://www.nasa.gov/offices/c3po/home/c3po_goal_objectives.html

Quote

Program Objectives
 

  • Implement U.S. Space Exploration policy with investments to stimulate the commercial space industry
  • Facilitate U.S. private industry demonstration of cargo and crew space transportation capabilities with the goal of achieving safe, reliable, cost effective access to low-Earth orbit
  • Create a market environment in which commercial space transportation services are available to Government and private sector customers

My bold. I had seen this years ago, that the point of commercial crew was primarily a ride to ISS, but that a secondary goal of the program was that these commercial vehicles should ideally have some commercial use case. NASA explicitly trying to kickstart a LEO economy for crew missions.

Wonder if it was something Lori said?

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22 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

I don't think "the point" of commercial crew was to launch "civilian" (I guess you mean non-NASA?) missions. The point was for NASA to be able to buy access to the ISS "off the shelf" from multiple vendors. They don't care who else buys missions or doesn't buy missions.

This

- unless NASA has an affordable, competitive market to choose different launch platforms and vehicles from, it's current structure is untenable. 

Problem is - outside of NASA as a customer, can we really expect anything other than bored billionaires to buy flights?  (It would be great to see some of the DEEP pocket educational institutions (Harvard, Stanford, etc) purchasing flights outside the aegis of NASA.) 

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2 minutes ago, JoeSchmuckatelli said:

(It would be great to see some of the DEEP pocket educational institutions (Harvard, Stanford, etc) purchasing flights outside the aegis of NASA.) 

For what purpose?

I mean, that's ultimately the issue here. Mainly the only purpose of flying to space is: "to fly to space". At least, it is for now.

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32 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

For what purpose?

I mean, that's ultimately the issue here. Mainly the only purpose of flying to space is: "to fly to space". At least, it is for now.

Yeah, there's not really a market besides tourism. I think the idea was to try and create some sort of commercial economy. AXIOM is using their private launches to send engineers to work on their own experiments, but like most experiments, seems like a free flier (no crew) would often make more sense—the experiment might have to be far more complex sans humans hands around, but the cost of sending those hands is so high, it's gotta be cheaper to do as a satellite. They might also—this was a decade ago—have been thinking about plans for commercial stations that NASA could then just buy time on. Bigelow, etc.

(note the ultimate customer for those stations is still largely, "NASA")

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33 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

For what purpose?

I mean, that's ultimately the issue here. Mainly the only purpose of flying to space is: "to fly to space". At least, it is for now.

That's the $64,000 question, isn't it?

It's also why NASA's budget is so easy to slash when someone needs a tax cut or entitlement to get reelected. 

Absent some smart guys in academia or some brave folks in industry finding a need to get up there regularly... This whole endeavor is a "we do this because we can" thing and not "because we need to" (or because it benefits us) thing. 

Frankly - that may be a true answer. 

If so, we are just wasting time and money.  If not - then every dollar spent now will pay divideds down the line. 

So either the collective smart and self interested people of the world find a way to make it worthwhile - or we are just entertaining the few of us who think this stuff is cool 

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The original purpose of aviation was "to fly".

Then about 10-15 years later, the military realized they could fly over the enemy and watch them. From that they realized that they could also drop things on them. And then they realized they needed to stop the enemy airplanes from doing the same to them. 100 years later, and that's basically still the entire situation for military aviation.

Very shortly after that, people realized they could use airplanes to move things and people from one place to another. And 100 years later, that's still the entire situation for commercial aviation.

So what is aviation good for:

  1. to fly
  2. to look down on things
  3. to drop things
  4. to move things from place to place
  5. to move people from place to place
  6. to stop other airplanes from doing 2-5

Spaceflight has only basically focused on 1, 2, and 3. They have talked about 4, 5, and 6 but not really done much of it.

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