Jump to content

ATV/Orion-Derived ESA Crew Capsule


fredinno
 Share

ESA Crewed Spacecraft and Space Station?  

14 members have voted

  1. 1. Good, Dumb, or Impossibru?

    • Good
      7
    • Dumb
      4
    • Impossibru!!!
      3


Recommended Posts

Over the years, there have been many proposals to give ESA its own Crew Launch Capability- something that (in my opinion) ESA may be closer to this capability than ever before (even closer than the Hermes Era). However, budgets are cramped (as expected), so my proposal attempts to make this as cheap as possible to develop:

 

Note: things in BOLD are the baseline proposal.

File:European_Service_Module_structural_

My proposal would use a minimal-modification ESA Orion Service module as the base (and service module), launching fully fueled on an Ariane V ECA or ES (or Ariane 6 w/ 4 SRBs)- all which have a payload capacity of 21T to LEO, (however, a burn of the Orion CM does the final, orbital insertion burn, along with rendezvous and deorbit burns).

 

The other components, the Launch Escape System (LES) and the Command Module (CM) would be basically European-made clones of the Orion CM and LES, respectively. (Building these parts in the US, is also an option, but would probably be a lot less politically palatable).

 

This would be used in a few flights to the ISS, before moving to a new, European Space Station, based of the Columbus MTFF proposal:http://www.astronautix.com/craft/colrmtff.htm but (ASSUMING INFINITE THE MONEY IS AVAILABLE) be built with a front docking port (which would have a node-like adapter with a total of 6 available berthing ports (2 with adapters for crewed spacecraft, 1 for cargo deliveries, 1 by the connection to the Columbus Module, and 2 ports used by the airlock and an unpressurized experiments bay). Its crewed module would be a modernized Columbus module of the ISS, and use a Orion SM as its service module, located at the space station's aft (but with larger solar arrays and with radiators), which is also used for re-boosts (along with the crewed ESA-Orion and Cargo Vehicle) and life support. This space station (I call it the MTFF-2) would be launched fully fueled by a single, expendable Falcon Heavy (the MTFF-2 being 53T in mass)- in the case of mass overruns, the fuel would be launched separately, in cargo spacecraft.

 

The Cargo Deliveries would be done by a newly-produced ATV, by a Progress Spacecraft (both which would require adapters to dock to the space station) or by a Cygnus.

 

One question, despite all this would be if it could be funded. If S*** hits the fan, the ESA Crewed Spacecraft would be used for SpaceLab-like Science missions, with unpressurized science experiments located between the spacecraft adapter jettisoned panels and the Service Module.

 

If money is somewhat more available however, the MTFF-2 would launch, but lack the node, airlock, unpressurized experiment bay (they would have to be carried next to the Orion SM if needed), only one docking port, and no cargo resupply vessels, and the space station would instead launch on a Reusable Falcon Heavy. THIS IS MY BASELINE PROPOSAL.

Orion_Service_Module_elements_2015.jpg

Good, Dumb, or Impossible? Comment below!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think there's the slightest chance it would happen. There actually used to be plans for a crewed version of ATV:

http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Human_Spaceflight/ATV/ATV_evolution_Advanced_Reentry_Vehicle_ARV

The plan was to use it first to return cargo. The capsule would have been based on the ARD from 1998. The capability could later be evolved into a manned vehicle by adding life support and a LAS.

Using licensed Orion hardware would be a bad idea. It would be way too big and expensive for its purpose, and you can't fit and Orion on top ov Ariane V. Besides, ITAR prevents NASA from exporting that technology anyway. A crewed ATV would necessarily be much smaller and fully ESA-designed.

The service module would rather be based on the ATV SM than on the Orion ESM because it wouldn't need the huge OMS-based main engine (which belongs to NASA anyway).

Edited by Nibb31
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Using an Orion or some kind of Orion clone for LEO work would be overkill, since one of the big reason why Orions are really expensive is it's designed for BEO work.

If in the process of cloning Orion you make all sorts of changes to it to make it more suitable for LEO, then you might as well design a whole new LEO capsule to start with.

Or look at it another direction, in the past Russia has gone to ESA to propose a joint project on a mini spaceplane called Kliper:
kliper-infographics.jpg

ESA said no thanks because they didn't want to just pay for a manned spacecraft, if they are to cough up the money then the money has to be spent in Europe on European engineers.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Nibb31 said:

I don't think there's the slightest chance it would happen. There actually used to be plans for a crewed version of ATV:

http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Human_Spaceflight/ATV/ATV_evolution_Advanced_Reentry_Vehicle_ARV

The plan was to use it first to return cargo. The capsule would have been based on the ARD from 1998. The capability could later be evolved into a manned vehicle by adding life support and a LAS.

Using licensed Orion hardware would be a bad idea. It would be way too big and expensive for its purpose, and you can't fit and Orion on top ov Ariane V. Besides, ITAR prevents NASA from exporting that technology anyway. A crewed ATV would necessarily be much smaller and fully ESA-designed.

The service module would rather be based on the ATV SM than on the Orion ESM because it wouldn't need the huge OMS-based main engine (which belongs to NASA anyway).

I used the Orion CM to be as cheap as possible to develop.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wouldn't something like CST-100 be cheaper? But you'd still have to pay for it somehow and get US Congress to waiver ITAR.

An ARD-derived vehicle (combined with ESA technology developed for the CRV) would be even cheaper and would provide work for European companies.

But that boat has sailed, unfortunately.

Edited by Nibb31
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Nibb31 said:

Wouldn't something like CST-100 be cheaper? But you'd still have to pay for it somehow and get US Congress to waiver ITAR.

An ARD-derived vehicle (combined with ESA technology developed for the CRV) would be even cheaper and would provide work for European companies.

But that boat has sailed, unfortunately.

I don't believe ITAR comes into play when you are just paying for rides. However, if their lunar orbital station pans out, those will most likely not be commercial flights (for political not technical reasons), but any LEO work would be just as well with commercial providers.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Who's talking about paying for rides ? The thread is about a European manned crew vehicle based on the ATV.

ESA is never going to "pay for rides", because that goes against its purpose.

Edited by Nibb31
Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 minutes ago, Nibb31 said:

Who's talking about paying for rides ? The thread is about a European manned crew vehicle based on the ATV.

ESA is never going to "pay for rides", because that goes against its purpose.

Edit: Does the ESA own a stake in Roscosmos or RKK Energia that makes Europeans riding on the Soyuz "Not Paying for a Ride"?

2 hours ago, Nibb31 said:

Wouldn't something like CST-100 be cheaper? But you'd still have to pay for it somehow and get US Congress to waiver ITAR.

An ARD-derived vehicle (combined with ESA technology developed for the CRV) would be even cheaper and would provide work for European companies.

But that boat has sailed, unfortunately.

So when you mentioned the CST-100 you weren't talking about paying for rides? Sorry if I mis-understood.

Edited by saabstory88
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Follow the plot ! Fredinno mentioned licensing the Orion MPCV to serve as a European crew module with a European ATV-SM on a European Ariane 5. I only said that licensing CST-100 would probably be more adequate than Orion. Nobody mentioned purchasing CST-100 tickets from ULA.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Aha! That makes more sense. 

I thought that crew vehicles were not covered under ITAR. That being said, I think Boeing might have some reservations about licensing out their design. I like the Orion idea for a European crew vehicle, especially given their interest in possible future Lunar operations. Even if they just initially use it in a LEO environment, it would be no additional work to the crew vehicle itself to have to have it ready for lunar flights. They would have to find some way to get it there though. Maybe they can finally finance a Hydrolox Angara upper stage.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Nibb31 said:

Wouldn't something like CST-100 be cheaper? But you'd still have to pay for it somehow and get US Congress to waiver ITAR.

An ARD-derived vehicle (combined with ESA technology developed for the CRV) would be even cheaper and would provide work for European companies.

But that boat has sailed, unfortunately.

Why? Couldn't they build a capsule from, say, scaled up IXV + Parafoils?

1 hour ago, saabstory88 said:

Aha! That makes more sense. 

I thought that crew vehicles were not covered under ITAR. That being said, I think Boeing might have some reservations about licensing out their design. I like the Orion idea for a European crew vehicle, especially given their interest in possible future Lunar operations. Even if they just initially use it in a LEO environment, it would be no additional work to the crew vehicle itself to have to have it ready for lunar flights. They would have to find some way to get it there though. Maybe they can finally finance a Hydrolox Angara upper stage.

They can with Ariane V/VI, just not fully fuelled.

Edited by fredinno
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not fully fueled and not with the Orion LAS.

ESA has no interest in buying stuff from a foreign company, whether that's a design license, a complete vehicle, or tickets for ride to orbit. ESA only spend it's money in ESA member countries, so any discussion of using a foreign design (outside of a cooperation barter deal) is moot.

Edited by Nibb31
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, saabstory88 said:

Edit: Does the ESA own a stake in Roscosmos or RKK Energia that makes Europeans riding on the Soyuz "Not Paying for a Ride"?

It's more complicated than that; NASA pays for seat for all US orbital segment crew members (all NASA ESA and JAXA ones), and ESA and JAXA pay them for it using a barter arrangement; HTV for JAXA and ATV and Orion participation for ESA. Both ultimately keep the money spent within their respective countries. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This thread is quite old. Please consider starting a new thread rather than reviving this one.

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...