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NASA SLS/Orion/Payloads

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On 11/7/2018 at 8:43 AM, Kerbal7 said:

It took 5 years and a national effort to develop and fly the first Saturn V. No expense spared. And you think little, itty bitty, SpaceX is going to have flying a bigger and much, much, more complicated BFR in a "couple years?"

There's going to be a whole lotta fanboy eating crow in a couple years.

1. Its not the 1960s

2. SpaceX is older than NASA was when the Saturn V was launched

3. How is SpaceX "itty biity"?  It has a 27 billion dollar evaluation, which is more than NASA's annual budget.  And unlike NASA, it can spend that money however it likes

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1 hour ago, DAL59 said:

And unlike NASA, it can spend that money however it likes

I think that is why nasa failed the space shuttle, and spaceX succeeded in falcon 9

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The Space Shuttle didn't fail.

 

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3 hours ago, DAL59 said:

3. How is SpaceX "itty biity"?  It has a 27 billion dollar evaluation, which is more than NASA's annual budget.

Setting aside the fact that this isn't the SpaceX thread, their valuation is utterly and completely irrelevant in this comparison - because that's the market's guess as to the value of the company, not it's cash flow/income/revenue.

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4 hours ago, tater said:

The Space Shuttle didn't fail.

 

Well, the cost per kg of space shuttle was 10000, that of altas/delta/ariane is 5000, that of spaceX is 2300 for falcon 9

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58 minutes ago, Xd the great said:

Well, the cost per kg of space shuttle was 10000, that of altas/delta/ariane is 5000, that of spaceX is 2300 for falcon 9


Cost is one metric of comparison, capability is another.  Nobody with any sense would compare $.99 hamburger to $9.90 sirloin and claim the former is equivalent and can universally replace the latter.  In the same way, none of the other launchers you list have even a fraction of the capabilities of the Shuttle.

It's not all about cost - it's about what you get for what you spend.

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21 minutes ago, DerekL1963 said:


Cost is one metric of comparison, capability is another.  Nobody with any sense would compare $.99 hamburger to $9.90 sirloin and claim the former is equivalent and can universally replace the latter.  In the same way, none of the other launchers you list have even a fraction of the capabilities of the Shuttle.

It's not all about cost - it's about what you get for what you spend.

Payload of space shuttle is 27500kg.

Payload of falcon heavy is 57000kg recovered.

Space shuttle can carry 7 to 8 astronauts.

Dragon 2 can carry 6 to 7 people.

ISS modules launched by space shuttle can be done by delta IV.

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8 hours ago, DAL59 said:

1. Its not the 1960s

1

You're right, it's not the 1960s. In the 1960s the US was serious about its manned space program because it feared the Soviet Union. Today, however, the same US that sent men to the moon cannot put men into orbit. It relies on those same Russians it feared so much in the 1960s for this service. Such is the degradation of the US manned space program.

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2. SpaceX is older than NASA was when the Saturn V was launched

So what?

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3. How is SpaceX "itty biity"?  It has a 27 billion dollar evaluation, which is more than NASA's annual budget.  And unlike NASA, it can spend that money however it likes

SpaceX is subservient to NASA. They're not boisterous about it, but they are very much in charge of NewSpace (including SpaceX) because they control the cash flow. And this is why the BFR will never fly anyone to Mars or the Moon. NASA has its own rocket under development and the BFR isn't it. The BFR pipedream is going to dry up and blow away for lack of money. That'll be obvious soon. The SLS will come to fruition, eventually. Late and over budget, but it will arrive.

Edited by Kerbal7
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2 hours ago, Xd the great said:

Well, the cost per kg of space shuttle was 10000, that of altas/delta/ariane is 5000, that of spaceX is 2300 for falcon 9

Not altogether relevant. Sure it’s a metric of comparison, but the majority of the cost of just about every mission is the actual spacecraft itself. That and potentially operation costs, depending on various factors. If a cheaper launcher was desirable, it would already exist. As it stands the launch costs aren’t significant for most space uses. The market just isn’t really there. At least for now. I mean, a cheaper launch is nice and all, but that’s really only going to save a few tens of millions in most cases, maybe a couple hundred million. But if it’s a billion plus dollar mission, that could easily be within the margins of the budget. And so long as launch cost is marginal lower launch costs won’t do much. It could just make the launch even more marginal in terms of cost. 

Something like Starlink, while crazy, may have a greater effect on the space launch market than anything else. Launching thousands of satellites of a few hundred kilograms is no small feat. That pretty much entails mass production of spacecraft, which could lead to cheaper spacecraft, which could increase launch demand. This is all a maybe, though.

Edited by Bill Phil
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38 minutes ago, Xd the great said:

Payload of falcon heavy is 57000kg recovered.

2/3 recovered.

39 minutes ago, Xd the great said:

Dragon 2 can carry 6 to 7 people.

 

39 minutes ago, Xd the great said:

ISS modules launched by space shuttle can be done by delta IV.

You mentioned Falcon Heavy, Dragon 2 and Delta IV in your post, which are three different things. Dragon 2 won't launch on FH (even if it could, there wouldn't be 20+ tons of additional cargo), and Delta IV is something else entirely.

Individual rockets and spacecrafts may do one specific job better than the Shuttle, but none of them can do everything at once. While also being recoverable/reusable.

9 minutes ago, Kerbal7 said:

The BFR pipedream is going to dry up and blow away for lack of money. That'll be obvious soon.

SpaceX has its own inverstors. BFR has a customer already. Money will also be coming from Starlink. 

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23 minutes ago, Kerbal7 said:

In the 1960s the US was serious about its manned space program because it feared the Soviet Union. Today, however, the same US that sent men to the moon cannot put men into orbit. It relies on those same Russians it feared so much in the 1960s for this service.

Ergo, without the USSR the USA still could not into space, let alone the Moon. Insufficient motivation. No pain - no gain, as is.

1 hour ago, DerekL1963 said:

Nobody with any sense would compare $.99 hamburger to $9.90 sirloin and claim the former is equivalent and can universally replace the latter. 

You can eat 10 times more often if spend your $9.90 to buy hamburgers rather than one sirloin.
NASA complains that they don't have money. So, luxury vs necessity.

1 hour ago, Xd the great said:

Dragon 2 can carry 6 to 7 people.

It wishes. But still doesn't.

Edited by kerbiloid

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12 minutes ago, sh1pman said:

SpaceX has its own inverstors. BFR has a customer already. Money will also be coming from Starlink. 

1

Elon Musk and his BFR is all hat and no cattle. Prepare yourselves for more stories like this...

SpaceX Won't Launch Tourists Around the Moon This Year

SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk announced that the company aimed to fly two paying customers on a weeklong journey around the moon before the end of 2018...

SpaceX won't launch two space tourists on a mission around the moon in 2018 after all, according to media reports.

https://www.space.com/40805-spacex-delays-tourist-trip-around-moon.html

 

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1 minute ago, Kerbal7 said:

Elon Musk and his BFR is all hat and no cattle. Prepare yourselves for more stories like this...

SpaceX Won't Launch Tourists Around the Moon This Year

SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk announced that the company aimed to fly two paying customers on a weeklong journey around the moon before the end of 2018...

SpaceX won't launch two space tourists on a mission around the moon in 2018 after all, according to media reports.

https://www.space.com/40805-spacex-delays-tourist-trip-around-moon.html

But the delay isn't because they don't have money, or couldn't do it in time. It's because they switched FH/Dragon 2 for BFR. Obviously, it couldn't be completed by 2018. Hence the delay.

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28 minutes ago, sh1pman said:

You mentioned Falcon Heavy, Dragon 2 and Delta IV in your post, which are three different things. Dragon 2 won't launch on FH (even if it could, there wouldn't be 20+ tons of additional cargo), and Delta IV is something else entirely.

Individual rockets and spacecrafts may do one specific job better than the Shuttle, but none of them can do everything at once. While also being recoverable/reusable..

That is why we should have specialized rockets for specialized jobs, a one-size-fit-all does not work, and modular designs are complicated by the fact that they are modular and thus need connecting to other modules.

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Just now, Xd the great said:

That is why we should have specialized rockets for specialized jobs, a one-size-fit-all does not work, and modular designs are complicated by the fact that they are modular and thus need connecting to other modules.

Meaning that you need to develop and have assembly lines for N different rockets and spacecraft instead of one. See, there are always pros and cons for these things. 

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45 minutes ago, sh1pman said:

Meaning that you need to develop and have assembly lines for N different rockets and spacecraft instead of one. See, there are always pros and cons for these things. 

I should have added that competition forces companies to improve. See, spaceX forced a whole new generation of rockets. The soviets forced NASA to improve to saturn V.

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3 hours ago, Xd the great said:

Payload of space shuttle is 27500kg.

Payload of falcon heavy is 57000kg recovered.

Space shuttle can carry 7 to 8 astronauts.

Dragon 2 can carry 6 to 7 people.

ISS modules launched by space shuttle can be done by delta IV.

Payload to LEO (and the cost derived from that) is nonsense.

The payload of FH to LEO is in fact identical to F9, every kg over that is propellant, not actual payload (you can't stuff 57 tonnes under the fairing, sorry).

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2 hours ago, Kerbal7 said:

SpaceX is subservient to NASA. They're not boisterous about it, but they are very much in charge of NewSpace (including SpaceX) because they control the cash flow. And this is why the BFR will never fly anyone to Mars or the Moon. NASA has its own rocket under development and the BFR isn't it. The BFR pipedream is going to dry up and blow away for lack of money. That'll be obvious soon. The SLS will come to fruition, eventually. Late and over budget, but it will arrive.

NASA is a very important customer of SpaceX, just as it is for the commercial entities that are reaming the taxpayer for SLS/Orion. NASA is not building its own rocket, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, ULA, Northrop Grumman, and Aerojet Rocketdyne are building SLS/Orion.

SLS is terribly managed, and the OIG is now auditing the whole program (after savaging their management of the core stage of SLS). It's not just late and over budget, it's very, very badly managed (the OIG report is online, I suggest reading it). It's also poorly designed, since it literally does little that is useful. It's not big enough to go to the Moon (in a meaningful way), and it's too big to go to orbit. It;s also grossly overpriced. It will never fly more than once a year, and the fixed program costs are a couple billion dollars, so while the marginal launch cost might only be X hundred million, the actual cost is closer to 3 billion per flight. SLS is never getting us anyplace unless commercial space does most of the work.

SLS will still fly because the sunk cost fallacy is strong in government, no question.

Regarding BFR, you seem to have a strong bias against it. It's under construction now. It's more real than ULA's Vulcan (it's actually under construction, after all) right now. There is literally nothing about BFR that doesn't make sense as a concept, it's the same concept that has been floated by other NASA contractors since the early 1960s---except that technology has improved a great deal in terms of materials, and more importantly computers (the importance of the ability to simulate designs cannot be overstated).

2 hours ago, Kerbal7 said:

Elon Musk and his BFR is all hat and no cattle. Prepare yourselves for more stories like this...

SpaceX Won't Launch Tourists Around the Moon This Year

SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk announced that the company aimed to fly two paying customers on a weeklong journey around the moon before the end of 2018...

SpaceX won't launch two space tourists on a mission around the moon in 2018 after all, according to media reports.

The guy that your bolding (you could use all caps, too, if you like!) is talking about is the same guy who is putting money into BFR, instead. If delays are somehow disqualifying for a provider to be real, then SLS/Orion should be even worse, particularly given the fact that they will have been given over 40 billion dollars by the time people climb on top of SLS.

I'm not holding my breath for Dear Moon to fly tourists around the Moon. Everything in the universe is not black and white, however. You seem to live in a world where SLS/Orion gets to (rightfully) live in a world of grays, but SpaceX has to do everything on timelines that are stated at the time they are made to be unrealistically aggressive, or they are total nonsense. You need to have consistent standards, was Elon Musk personally mean to you once, or something? Do you work for an SLS contractor?

 

 

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3 hours ago, sh1pman said:

Individual rockets and spacecrafts may do one specific job better than the Shuttle, but none of them can do everything at once. While also being recoverable/reusable.

BFR (and/or New Glen or maybe New Armstrong) just might.  You certainly need a lot more mass than the Shuttle, you have to take advantage of technologies simply not available in the 1970s when it was designed (they weren't going to hoverslam F1 engines, for example), and do so in ways that don't involve making Congressional budgets happy (I've seen the US Navy happy with a 10x markup on ordinary computer products, mostly because of all the other requirements it takes to fit them on board ship).

Time passes and technology improves.  To do all of the Shuttle jobs, you'll need either a lot more mass or a Shuttle.  But I won't say SLS is doing that job (they are making each flight *more* expensive).

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Shuttle was not the right way to deliver many payloads to LEO. It's important to remember that the Orbiter was what, 95 tonnes? So the throw to LEO was in fact more like 130t, not 25t. Shuttle C (a big cargo pod with the SSMEs and OMS pod on the back) would have been pretty capable, and could have flown all this time since crew (Orbiter) missions were discontinued if we had had a need for a SHLV. Flight cadence could have improved, since refurb would not have been a thing. Send Orion to meet it on Atlas, and we've replaced SLS with something unambiguously better, and it could have been flying right away (Shuttle C was talked about long before 2011).

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18 minutes ago, tater said:

Shuttle C (a big cargo pod with the SSMEs and OMS pod on the back) would have been pretty capable, and could have flown all this time since crew (Orbiter) missions were discontinued if we had had a need for a SHLV. .

 Strap those SSMEs to ET instead, add a second stage on top, and you've got SLS.

...Hmm, why then SLS Block 1 doesn't have 130t+ throw to LEO?

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You also have to distuingish between Shuttle C and the Shuttle derived heavy lift launch vehicle. Shuttle C is a much earlier concept and is basically an unmanned Orbiter without the capacity to return to earth, allowing for some extra cargo. This would have allowed to build the ISS unmanned since it still is able to maneuver on orbit. SDHLLV Is basically just a mounting point for the SSME‘s and a large fairing which would make it even more capable when it comes to putting mass into orbit. For both to be working right now they would have to have started serious development in the 80s. If they only started in the late 2000s they would have come just as far as SLS.

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3 hours ago, tater said:

The payload of FH to LEO is in fact identical to F9, every kg over that is propellant, not actual payload (you can't stuff 57 tonnes under the fairing, sorry).

Are you sure!! Why won't any 'Space Youtube Channel' or other social media point it out? Surely they are not stupid!! (/sarcasm)

I refrain from taking part in debates about which I don't know everything about(honestly I dont know much about anything :D)..But here are my few cents:

<rant>

As for the BFR: Yeah, I can see it getting completed and flown to low earth orbit and cis lunar space. But I have this nagging doubt: How will it travel to Mars? Propulsion-wise it can, but what about Life Support systems? Such life support systems have not been validated, even in LEO. Sometimes, its wondrous that I have interacted with people(not on this forum, obviously) who don't believe that we landed on the Moon believe that a rich billionaire will take them to Mars, somehow...

As for the SLS: It will fly, for the sake of justifying the cost. It will definitely fly.  2030s, it will fly. And so will the BFR(in 2030s) .Because do you seriously think that a proud government will allow a private company to fly before them? Look what they are doing to CCDev! Delaying it constantly, until Orion is developed, and all of a sudden Dragon and Starliner are not needed anymore. The "American" spacecraft that will take NASA astronauts to space will be Orion and nothing else. (But, eh..thats just speculation)..

</rant>

EDIT: Oh yes, one more thing! Has there been any sort of investigation done, or documents released by SpaceX to prove that reusing the core stage of F9 indeed reduced costs? If yes, please point me to the general direction. I will try to understand the big words with my thesaurus :D

Edited by Nivee~

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7 hours ago, Xd the great said:

ISS modules launched by space shuttle can be done by delta IV.

Sure - after you spend huge heaps of cash developing a spacecraft/service module that will supply all the services that a Shuttle does and Delta doesn't....  And a huge heap of cash per mission for said module.
 

6 hours ago, Xd the great said:

That is why we should have specialized rockets for specialized jobs


No, we don't.  We have rockets with different payload capacities, but that's not the same thing.


(And guys, please don't feed the BFR troll.  This is not the SpaceX thread.)

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Surely a smaller version of ACES, with more manoeuvring capacity could do that. ACES is already in development, and ULA certainly has enough money to do it,=.

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