Congress, Events, NASA

Briefly: Olson on the NASA bill, upcoming space policy conference

In a recent speech in the Houston area, Congressman Pete Olson blamed “an insurance item” for the House’s inability to pass the NASA authorization bill before going on recess nearly a month ago. According to local paper The Citizen, Olson told the Clear Lake Chamber that “the California delegation had a problem with an insurance item in the legislation” which kept the bill from going to the full House for a vote. The article isn’t more specific about that concern: previous reports had indicated that the bill’s sponsors planned to shift a proposed loan guarantee program for commercial crew development into a more conventional grant program, while House members from California and Ohio wanted to restore funding for technology and commercial crew development programs. (The same article also states that the bill had been approved by the “Houston Committee on Science and Technology”; not sure if that’s a typo or a Freudian slip.)

The University of Nebraska College of Law will be hosting a free one-day conference on national space policy on Friday, September 10, at the Newseum in Washington. Keynote speakers include Gen. James Cartwright, vice-chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and NASA deputy administrator Lori Garver.

90 comments to Briefly: Olson on the NASA bill, upcoming space policy conference

  • Ben Russell-Gough

    Insurance program = commercial crew to ISS? It is an indication of how different Congress’s approach to this issue is from the President’s when you consider that they regard Orion/SLS as the prime US crew access vehicle for the ISS and commercial crew as the backup!

    FWIW, over on NSF, they have published details of the HEFT report that recommends SD-HLV In-line (8.4m diameter core tank, SSME-powered) as the best HLV option available at this time. It also claims that no serious benefits are gained from the President’s proposed five-year pause for thought. Interestingly, the HEFT report also recommends that the initial version of HLV would be cargo-only and would not have a dedicated upper stage. This implies that the reports authors view commercial crew as the designated hitter for ISS crew rotation.

    Of course, there is no reason to believe that the report will be implimented as written. It just goes to show that the arguments are not over at any level and the ‘consensus’ is actually paper thing.

  • Ben Russell-Gough

    * Looks at previous post * Ah.

    Did you spot the deliberate mistake? That last sentence was meant to read “is actually paper thin.” Sorry about that.

  • David C

    ahhhhhhhh Ben, have just read the NSF Article, and yes the last sentence says it all: As with the addition of STS-135, the conclusion and approval of political refinements into NASA’s future will be the key driver.So we are to keep our ears to the ground, and wait for the middle of September :)
    and “Paper Thing” could be a Freudian Slip ;) not a Deliberate Mistake, unless your baiting the Trolls LOL

  • Bennett

    Ben, I was wondering about that as I haven’t seen any consensus papers come out of the House… ;-)

  • Bennett

    john G wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 2:12 pm

    Only in a very limited and temporary sense. I did like the robot arm that snaked around the nozzle to pump CO2 into the rocket after the burn was finished.

    This should be the last we see of 5 segment SRBs for a long long time.

  • John Malkin

    They have money for DM-3 but nothing beyond. ATK said in the news conference, they have spent 1 pause look around Billion on the first stage. I’m sure that doesn’t include this or that and it doesn’t include other sub-contractors. It is the most functional part of the Ares I to date.

  • John Malkin

    I meant to put functional in quotes.

  • Bennett

    Thanks John. I like the “pause, look around”…

  • SpaceTek

    Don’t count em out yet Bennet. You friggin liberal numbnut.

  • Mark R. Whittington

    Bennett, actually the deal is done. There will be an SD-HLV that will include the five segment SRB.

  • Robert G. Oler

    Mark R. Whittington wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 5:41 pm

    Bennett, actually the deal is done. There will be an SD-HLV that will include the five segment SRB….

    no there wont be.

    you are as wrong on this as you were about the VSE or Cx surviving.

    Robert G. Oler

  • David C

    Mark
    I have been here with Direct and SDLVs for 3 years now, and have been disappointed many times, I’m not opening a bottle of vino yet; the studies and the Senate are leaning toward a basic core vehicle, for cargo first, utilizing 4 segment SRBs, developing a upper stage of shuttle payload bay size; the 5 segment SRBs will come online (they are still in development) in time for the next evolution of the SDLV, with a BEO Orion and the trip to the NEO. but those are still studies and nothing is written in stone; when the first “Ares” MK II is test flown in 3 years and when metal is being bent, for new ET’s and SRBs are being created, not reused ones, then I will say we are on our way; there is a long way to go yet;

  • Bennett

    SpaceTek wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 5:28 pm

    What exactly is a friggin liberal numbnut?

    Is that even an insult?

  • Dennis Berube

    Hey the test of the DM2 motor was a success today and I wonder how that will fair with regards to the HLV! Even the new cold O rings performed as hoped for.

  • Robert G. Oler

    David C wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 6:43 pm

    Mark
    I have been here with Direct and SDLVs for 3 years now, and have been disappointed many times, I’m not opening a bottle of vino yet; the studies and the Senate are leaning toward a basic core vehicle, for cargo first, ..

    if the Senate is leaning toward that (and I dont think so) then they should have put something in law and funded it to keep the infrastructure where something like this could be done.

    One of two paths is going to be taken.

    1. The Senate bill becomes law. In which case thats it…the end of Shuttle Derived heavy lift. The infrastructure will be shut down, the people dumped, Alliance doing something else (or gone) and no more real money for anything out of ATK.

    2. A CR happens…in which case watch out. The deficit commission is going to come in and the deficit is going to be the main topic…when everyone figures out that NASA is going to get whacked, the current budget will seem “fat”. And when the estimated cost for a SDV come out then its dead.

    In the meantime “Obama space” like old man river, just keeps rolling along.

    If Falcon 9 with its op Dragon makes it to orbit and Dragon makes it back down…put a stick in all the great NASA plans…they are done.

    Robert G. Oler

  • David C

    Robert
    “no there wont be”
    care to back that up with studies or perhaps name names; 4 word comment seems rather thin paper; some inside information, or lobbyists perhaps who are powerful enough to turn a Senate proposal to scrap paper ;) we already know that NASA is doing trade studies in the direction of a SDLV, preparing the ground as it were, for a change in the wind; can you definitively give us your proofs and citations for your opinions;

  • John Malkin

    They failed a seal on purpose to see the reaction of the secondary seal. I would like to see more stress testing of the reactants. Actually fail boaster to see the ballistic properties of the fragments.

    Couldn’t some of the fragments become self propelled or they would stop reacting once the pressure is released?

    The SD-HLV has become a magicians trick to make the Ares I disappear. It is to bad we spent the money on Ares I-X since it really had little relationship to SD-HLV. Isn’t that correct, rocket scientist?

  • David C

    Robert
    would you care to quote the parts of the Senate Bill that definitively specify that the SDLV and the Shuttle Infrastructure is shut out; I’ll admit that I haven’t looked at the bill since they went on recess; has it change; has there been a consensus paper come out from the House / Senate negotiations that we have missed; I am puzzled by that comment #1

  • Martijn Meijering

    In the meantime “Obama space” like old man river, just keeps rolling along.

    Or something much smaller than that, say Orion on EELV, ISS extension and CRS, perhaps with some funding for a manned Dragon.

  • Robert G. Oler

    David C wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 7:13 pm

    Robert
    would you care to quote the parts of the Senate Bill that definitively specify that the SDLV and the Shuttle Infrastructure is shut out..

    ah as TR use to say about the Congress “that is the beauty of the thing”.

    All the space pork people can rally around the language “we wanted a SDV”,..but the trick is that the language doesnt say that…it says something like “to the extent possible” or weasel words like that (sorry no time to look it up..am building some shielding CAT cables for a friends airplane).

    But the reality is that every time someone from Alliance goes out the door or some vendor gets shut down for no more shuttle trips and soon it will be this or that infrastructure (pad etc) is mothballed…then it becomes more and more economically hard to restart something that uses shuttle hardware.

    Thats the trick to killing Ares 1 and V and a SDV is to hold out the promise of a SDV But with no real money to keep it viable so that as the next budget cycle comes around then ZOUNDS it is just to expensive to restart this or that and the SDV is done.

    There would have been a way. First the Senate could have mandated a SDV period. There are several solid designs out there, Boeing even tried to peak everyones interest to get this started with their SDV that even didnt use the solids for one version of it.

    Second the Senate could have pushed some money out to keep test flights going for Ares (JSC wanted this thats why all the geniuses on the Ares program started coming up with revised flight plans)..

    there are lots of ways. The Congress (mostly the House in this case) did exactly this with the B-1 when Carter killed it…hoping that he was a one termer and something else could crank up.

    I suspect Kay thought she might have been doing that with the addition of the LON…even though that really is still up in the air…but the timing isnt correct.

    If Whittington were to be correct (poor Mark the descent has been sad) then there would have had to have been some money to keep the necessary shuttle infrastructure going UNTIL something could use it. More Alliance folks daily get the layoff notice.

    A SDV is not prohibited, its not killed, the death panels (sorry Sarah) are just letting it die naturally and the fans are to caught up in the rapture to notice.

    It is the DC version of musical chairs…who has money when the music stops.

    Robert G. Oler

  • David C

    Robert
    Have fun with the co-ax; wear your gloves ;)
    thanks for taking the time to write that long winded reply; definitely NOT putting it down;

    I have the Senate Appropriations Bill that passed the Senate open to section 302 and yes, must admit, there are “Weasel Words or Phrases” in evidence; will have a closer look and mark them; What a wonder world of politics we live in; no wonder nothing gets done in a timely fashion; will take your great big grain of salt and as I said, keep the wine corked for now, that is set aside for Space;

    however September 15th is coming up, and I have reason to celebrate 70th anniversary of Battle of Britain Day;
    Cheers

  • libs0n

    Oler,

    The Senate did mandate a SDLV. The Senate bill fixes requirements around a SDLV layout, so only a SDLV can possibly meet those requirements. They did allocate funds in the bill to ensure the enactment of their goal, in the small continuation of the Shuttle, in directing the funds for KSC renovations, and in the multi-billion budget allocated to development of the SDLV starting as soon as the budget is passed. You are misinformed. Everything you think would be necessary to ensure a SDLV is built has been done by them.

    You are expecting reality to conform to what you and I might consider rational. The SDLV is a bad option, so it cant be chosen. This is simply wishful thinking. The enemy is devious and does not care about value, or conforming to your rules, only that what benefits them is enacted and nothing else.

  • Robert G. Oler

    libs0n wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 8:29 pm

    no not so much.

    all the shuttle huggers wish what you are saying is accurate but its not.

    The people continue to go out the door, vendors keep getting shut down and here is the kicker.

    If at the end of this budget cycle (well the one that will start with the passage (maybe) of the Senate bill) Charlie Bolden comes up and says “here is our new heavy lift” and it looks a lot like Delta IV (ie no SRB’s for instance) there is nothing the Senate or House can do and say “wow thats not what we had in mind dont spend the money”

    The shuttle system is having a death panel moment..and taking SDV down with it.

    Robert G. Oler

  • Robert G. Oler

    David C wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 8:13 pm

    yes…15 Sept. Never in the field of human conflict have so many owed so much to so few.

    Be sure and watch The Battle of Brittan…

    Robert G. Oler

  • David C

    Robert,
    I am from the Southwark docks, I have the books and the movie ;) we have been following the battle day by day; so don’t worry, we few that remember, will toast the few so long as we can stand :;)
    Cheers

  • David C

    libs0n
    Robert is right about the death watch/panel (layoffs), and the weasel wordings in the Senate Appropriations Bill; he is just using his experiences with the US Gov’t system to predict the outcome; can’t fault him for that; however, like a hurricane or tornado, there is nothing that says it has to remain on this course; nor does it mean I have to agree with his predicted outcome ;) it is what it is and will be;

  • Robert G. Oler

    David C wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 10:31 pm

    “Robert,
    I am from the Southwark docks, I have the books and the movie ;) we have been following the battle day by day; so don’t worry, we few that remember, will toast the few so long as we can stand :;)”

    I think the phrase is “good show”.

    As I recall the movie (which is the ultimate fighter pilot movie) is based on the book “The Narrow Margin”…I had the great honor to chat at one point with Adolph Galland and some of the folks who flew Spits and Hurris and what stories.

    In the mid 80′s my late wife and I were touring the Imperial War Museum and the guide was first rate. He came to the place where the Battle of Brittan memorabilia and pictures were displayed and while he was talking about the “one person” shelter that was on display we (my late wife and I) were scanning the photos.

    We both found at about the same time the photo of our guide many decades earlier standing next to his Spit…and he went on giving an excellent presentation asked for questions and then had us moving on. Marla raised her hand and said “Flying Officer, when are you going to tell us the story behind the dashing young man standing next to his Spit.”

    The Narrow Margin.

    Robert G. Oler

  • Major Tom

    “… actually the deal is done.”

    What deal? The House and the Senate don’t even have all the relevant NASA authorization and appropriations bills through floor votes. Forget negotiating a “deal” between the two houses in conference and sending the resulting conference bill to the President.

    Don’t waste other posters’ time making idiotic statements out of ignorance. Learn junior high school civics.

    “There will be an SD-HLV that will include the five segment SRB.”

    As other posters have already pointed out, even the congressional bills and accompanying reports defer five-segment development to some decision point years in the future.

    Don’t waste other posters’ time making idiotic statements out of ignorance. Read the subject matter you’re posting on, comprehend it, and think through whether it supports your argument before you post.

    Moreover, using five-segment SRBs on an HLV would be stupendously wasteful in the extreme. The mass will likely exceed the ratings of the crawlers and crawlerway, requiring billions in new equipment and facilities. Only an idiot would support the unnecessary flushing of so many taxpayer dollars.

  • vulture4

    “Only an idiot would support the unnecessary flushing of so many taxpayer dollars.” Or the corps of lobbyists that support ATK. Constellation continues spending money full speed, though there is no practical value to any of its products.

    Both Boeing and SpaceX have advertised HLV concepts, both all-liquid-propulsion. If NASA can ever actually afford an HLV payload, it can simply procure and HLV. There’s no need for NASA to build one.

    What NASA does need is an RLV. Only and RLV has any chance of reducing the cost of human spaceflight to a practical level.

  • brobof

    vulture4 wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 1:22 am
    Spot on! Concur. Re: RLV would add: what THE WORLD needs…
    Here’s a blast from the past you might like.
    http://smartech.gatech.edu/bitstream/1853/8429/1/aiaa_98-1557.pdf
    “ARGUS, a highly reusable SSTO rocket based combined cycle launch vehicle with Maglifter launch assist”

    Chimborazo Spaceport!

    With regard to the POR juggernaut, there is scientific value tho.
    I had hoped that the presser after the DM2 test would be more revealing:
    http://www.space-multimedia.nl.eu.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=6130%3Apost-development-motor-2-static-test-fire-news-conference-&catid=1%3Alatest&Itemid=1
    This space cadet comes away with the impression that no-one was happy. Perhaps ATK hasn’t won after all?

  • DCSCA

    David C wrote @ August 31st, 2010 at 11:09 pm <– FYI, was living in London when they were filming sequences for the late 60's movie, 'Battle of Britain.' Still a shilling, pence and half-crown town then, just before they went decimal. Recall the tabloids running a few stories alerting the pensioners not to be alarmed when they saw German and British planes over London landmarks again reinacting their dogfightin' from 25 years earlier for a day or two of 'shooting.' It was quite a sight to see a few Hurricanes, Spitfires, 109s and Heinkels in flight over ol'London town. The only thing that topped it was Concorde w/a Royal Air Force escort passing low over Buckingham Palace in '69 for the Queen's Birthday.

  • It will be fun to see the ‘consensus’ bill coming from the Senate/House negotiations, if it ever happens in time.

    Personally I don’t see it happening, since the language in both bills seem quite a bit apart.

    I predict a CR in which the CxP zombie gets funded at 1/3 level as it staggers along for another fiscal year. And as Oler predicts, more shuttle people get laid off and the infrastructure deteriorates further.

    In the meantime, Dragon launches in October-November time-frame and a successful test puts another nail into the CxP zombie.

    As Oler said before, ObamaSpace wins by default.

  • Dennis Berube

    Remember the X-33 was supposed to be a SSTO vehicle and they cancellted that. I knew a guy who worked on it..

  • amightywind

    Personally I don’t see it happening, since the language in both bills seem quite a bit apart.

    I don’t see an agreement happening either. Not with the GOP poised to seize power in November. Why compromise? Expect profound changes in 2011, however, and the restructuring of the Constellation program. In 2011 the Utah, Alabama, Texas, and Florida delegations take revenge on Newspace.

    The DM-2 test was a great success.

  • In 2011 the Utah, Alabama, Texas, and Florida delegations take revenge on Newspace.

    More political gamesmanship from the GOPers? Sure, that’ll get things done LOL!

    They can take revenge all they want, that’s not going to get CxP back to full funding. If anything, a GOPer Congress will have the hatchet out.

    Don’t expect an HLV until 2025 Windy. What’ll ya say then?

    You might not care if you’re living in a cardboard box, working dayjobs for your soup if your GOPer and Corpo-Dem heroes cut SS to the bone.

    Better start making your millions now!

  • MrEarl

    NASA has already moved on from the administrations proposal of Feb 1. according to the report by the HEFT, (Human Exploration Framework Team) delivered to Bolden and Garver in mid-July and they accepted the teams proposals.
    The highlights are:
    For the launch vehical:
    Accelerate Shuttle Derived inline HLV development to FY’11.
    90-100mT range.

    For Spacecraft:
    Focus on an Orion derived vehicle for BEO with reliance on commercial spacecraft for ISS crew servicing.

    Seems like NASA/administration and the Senate have found common ground now the House needs to step up.

    Details here:
    http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=22567.0

  • amightywind

    GOPer and Corpo-Dem heroes cut SS to the bone.

    Don’t need it. I’ve written it off because it cannot be there for me. Too many blue collar types gaming the system and living off of disability. There is this concept among free people called ‘savings’. I practice it. I take a wonderful invention called ‘compound interest’ that may be foreign to leftists who live hand to mouth. I plan to buy some chump’s foreclosed house in Florida, drive a Cadillac, party at the yacht club, and pay my doctor cash when I retire.

  • Martijn Meijering

    Remember the X-33 was supposed to be a SSTO vehicle and they cancellted that.

    RLV is not the same as SSTO. But a NASA-led RLV project is even less likely to work than a NASA HLV. Launch vehicles should be left to the private sector.

  • Remember the X-33 was supposed to be a SSTO vehicle and they cancellted that.

    X-33 was only single-stage-to-Montana.

  • amightywind

    Launch vehicles should be left to the private sector.

    Contracts should be bid competitively, certainly. The heavy lift requirements that come from lunar and NEO mission profiles are purely and necessarily government activities. Traditionally NASA has managed the overall design of large vehicles, and its worked pretty well so far.

  • Martijn Meijering

    No, heavy lift is not a “requirement”. Heavy lift is unnecessary, even obviously so. It is a ploy to ensure the survival of the Shuttle political-industrial complex.

  • amightywind

    It is a ploy to ensure the survival of the Shuttle political-industrial complex.

    At some point in order to explore you must put large hardware into space. The childish retro-60′s toys of newspace that are currently in vogue are simply not up to the task. Congress is unwise to back off the 200mT requirement. Look at the published Lockmart Plymouth Rock proposal, the exploration mission that Obama supposedly supports. The mass/energy requirements are substantial and still there are very few accessible targets. F9/Dragon won’t cut it.

  • Ferris Valyn

    Contracts should be bid competitively, certainly.

    Remind me again, was the Ares I first stage competitively bid?

  • amightywind

    Remind me again, was the Ares I first stage competitively bid?

    The Ares I first stage should be considered a follow on the the Space Shuttle, which certainly was. Use of the SRB on Ares is an opportunistic and practical reuse of useful technology which would have accelerated development of post-shuttle launch architecture. That is, if Obama hadn’t sabotaged the Bush plan.

  • Martijn Meijering

    At some point in order to explore you must put large hardware into space.

    Anything we could reasonably want could be transported by Centaur from LEO to L1/L2, from where all targets of interests are reachable with propellant transfer, even with just hypergolics, which are proven technology. And anything that can be transported from LEO to L1/L2 on a Centaur can be lifted to LEO on an EELV Heavy.

    The mass/energy requirements are substantial and still there are very few accessible targets.

    Not with refueling at L1/L2, which can be done with existing technology.

    F9/Dragon won’t cut it.

    The main drawbacks of having just F9 is the inability to launch 15-20mT payloads to LEO and the lack of a cryogenic upper stage. EELVs do not have that limitation.

    We simply do not need heavy lift.

  • Ferris Valyn

    The Ares I first stage should be considered a follow on the the Space Shuttle, which certainly was. Use of the SRB on Ares is an opportunistic and practical reuse of useful technology which would have accelerated development of post-shuttle launch architecture. That is, if Obama hadn’t sabotaged the Bush plan.

    Ok, but that doesn’t actually address the point about it being competitively bid.

  • Robert G. Oler

    amightywind wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 11:31 am

    ” That is, if Obama hadn’t sabotaged the Bush plan.”

    LOL. To paraphrase Henry Kissinger, “sabotaging a plan that is failing of its own weight is impossible”.

    Robert G. Oler

  • Robert G. Oler

    MrEarl wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 9:57 am

    hah this is more of JSC trying to save their phoney baloney jobs

    its dead

    Robert

  • MrEarl

    Oler:
    You are so out of the loop on this. Get off the blogs and start looking around.

  • Major Tom

    “Not with the GOP poised to seize power in November. Why compromise? Expect profound changes in 2011, however, and the restructuring of the Constellation program.”

    The Republican Party is running on a platform of fiscal responsibility. If they retake the House, the last thing their leadership is going to do is increase NASA’s budget by the $5 billion per year or $25 billion through the runout necessary to get Constellation back on its feet and maybe get Ares I/Orion flying seven to nine years after the first commercial V/capsule had it inaugural flight. Such a move would become exhibit A in an attack on the party’s hypocrisy when it comes to deficit reduction. They’d get flailed by their freshman members, the Senate, and the White House.

    Think before you post.

    “In 2011 the Utah, Alabama, Texas, and Florida delegations take revenge on Newspace.”

    Yeah, the Florida and Texas delegations are going to “take revenge” on companies employing thousands of workers in their states to run engine tests and launch operations.

    Please take your pills. You’re dangerously out of touch with reality.

    “The DM-2 test was a great success.”

    Yeah, it only took a quarter of a century to find a clean solution to the root cause of the Challenger accident.

    Yawn…

    Stop failing. Start flying. To orbit.

  • Major Tom

    “NASA has already moved on from the administrations proposal of Feb 1. according to the report by the HEFT, (Human Exploration Framework Team) delivered to Bolden and Garver in mid-July and they accepted the teams proposals.”

    No, they didn’t. Per the nasaspaceflight article, Bolden and Garver only said they’d talk to the Senate about the team’s recommendations. HEFT is just one of many ongoing studies and activites (e.g., responses to the ESMD HLV BAA are still incoming), and no decision has been made.

    Don’t make things up.

  • Robert G. Oler

    MrEarl wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    Oler:
    You are so out of the loop on this. Get off the blogs and start looking around…

    LOL. If I had a nickle for everytime the SDV or Direct people on NASASPACEFLIGHT.com have predicted the pathway that leads to a SDV or Direct then we could retire the national debt…and yet if anything we are moving farther and farther away from their fantasy.

    JSC and the genius who are shuttle toady’s have come up with a plan, but that does not mean that it is Bolden’s or this administrations plan…and like the solar power demonstrator it isso far out of the loop of reality that it is slap silly.

    As I have predicted by this time next year NASA will be completely out of the launch business, the consoles at the shuttle FCR will be dark and the shuttle system and any derivatives will be faded and gone.

    The debate is moving in an entirely different direction

    Robert G. Oler

  • amightywind

    Martijn Meijering wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 11:36 am

    We simply do not need heavy lift.

    Lockmart builds the most reliable EELV. They don’t propose using it for their Plymouth Rock mission profile they released this week. Can you point me to a credible equivalent mission profile that does? If NEO really is the goal, where are the plans? Your personal opinions don’t count that much unless they are shared by enough other people. Of course NEO isn’t the plan. Stealth funding of NASA’s non-HSF constituents is.

  • MrEarl

    MT:
    “Per the nasaspaceflight article, Bolden and Garver only said they’d talk to the Senate about the team’s recommendations. ”

    This might help:
    Staff Senior Notes:
    EA/Engineering
    We briefed Charlie and Lori on HEFT in mid July and they accepted our recommendations will talk to the Senate about those. On Friday the HEFT team talked to the steering council. The team will continue through August 31st and then turn it over to a long term HEFT team.

    And reading the senate bill and report associated with it seems that the Senate has taken those recommendations to heart also. HEFT is also on-going, so…

  • MrEarl

    Oler:
    “The debate is moving in an entirely different direction”

    You are so delusional. What source to you have to even make that statement?

  • Martijn Meijering

    Lockmart builds the most reliable EELV.

    ULA actually. LM is the Orion prime contractor and wants to keep its contract if there is going to be an SDLV.

    Can you point me to a credible equivalent mission profile that does?

    Look up Huntress’ Next Steps in Exploring Deep Space or the work of the Decadal Planning Team or OASIS.

  • byeman

    “Lockmart builds the most reliable EELV”

    Wrong

    A. Lockmart does not build the EELV’s, ULA does
    B. Atlas is not the most reliable
    c. Lockmart is proposing a mission that pays more directly to it, i.e. two Orions. Any ULA profits are shared with Boeing.

  • Robert G. Oler

    MrEarl wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 1:31 pm

    “And reading the senate bill and report associated with it seems that the Senate has taken those recommendations to heart also. HEFT is also on-going, so…”

    and this is what passes for goofy at NASAspaceflight.com, JSC, and people like you.

    The Senate “bill” doesnt take any recommendations to heart.

    If it had the bill would have said “build the HLV like the JSC group says build it”. But this is the trick, it doesnt. Indeed if one puts the timeline together between when these events happened and what some of the politicans (or their staff) were saying it is pretty clear “build the HLV like the JSC group says build it” was completely rejected.

    Do you recall Nelson and Hutchinson’s statement at one point after Nelson talked with the guy on Appropriations (the Chair Conrad…someone sorry brain block) words to the affect of “I think we have found a billion dollars for a demonstration flight” or something like that.

    Thats when they thought that they were going to get the money to keep the infrastructure together to keep a SDV on the table.

    I am told by a chum who Whittington has met, who is the former Chief of Staff (and in that role is where Whittington and Kolker met him) to a senior TX senator and who now is a pretty big lobbiest on K street…that what killed the Nelson notion and any real specific instructions of a SDV is that they took a look at the cost figures that JSC came up with and had sticker shock.

    JSC can read the recommendations all they want to, you can have them tattooed to your forehead, but in the end they are meaningless…and the folks at JSC at least are bright enough to know that.

    That is why shuttle infrastructure keeps shutting down.

    Robert G. Oler

  • Matt Wiser

    Oler is like a certain poster on the military aviation group on usenet: living in his own fantasy world, and either ignoring data contradicting his own world, spinning it to suit his fantasy, and so on. In case he’s been in a cave since either 1 Feb or 15 Apr, the Senate has disposed of ObamaSpace, and the House even more so, but the two bills need to be reconciled. A lot of the funds originally meant for commercial crew will go to a full-up Orion with heavy-lift. In both bills. As R. Lee Ermey’s characters often say in his movies “Get with the Program!”

  • amightywind

    byeman wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    You are not thinking clearly.

    A. Lockmart does not build the EELV’s, ULA does

    A 50/50 joint venture between Lockmart and Boeing. Why compete when you can collude?

    B. Atlas is not the most reliable

    21.5/22 vs 12/13 QED

    c. Lockmart is proposing a mission that pays more directly to it, i.e. two Orions. Any ULA profits are shared with Boeing.

    You are right on the profit sharing. Being incentivised, why wouldn’t Lockmart propose a ULA solution then? They don’t. That Earth Departure Stage is featured prominently.

    Next victim please…

  • Major Tom

    “This might help:”

    It doesn’t. You’re just repeating what’s already in the article. Bolden and Garver agreed to talk to the Senate about the HEFT recommendations. That’s all. The Senate bill language is wide enough to drive an ET through and any HLV short of a sidemount could be accommodated. The bill is months away from becoming law (if it ever does), the HLV BAA is still ongoing, and no decisions have been made.

  • Major Tom

    “Contracts should be bid competitively, certainly. The heavy lift requirements that come from lunar and NEO mission profiles are purely and necessarily government activities… The Ares I first stage should be considered a follow on the the Space Shuttle.”

    Which is it, genius? Should Orion launch, which is not heavy lift, have been competed? Or should ATK have received its sole-source contract?

    Go away, think really, really hard about it, and get back to us when you’ve figured it out little guy.

    “, which certainly was.”

    Which certainly was what?

    Complete your sentences and arguments before you hit “submit”, genius.

    “Traditionally NASA has managed the overall design of large vehicles, and its worked pretty well so far.”

    Yeah, that Saturn V HLV was so affordable and sustainable that we’re still flying it today, just like the B-52.

    Yeah, the Shuttle was such tour de force of efficiency and reliability that it created leaps and bounds in cost and safety and broke open whole new applications in space.

    Yeah, the ISS is such a masterwork of simplicity that NASA was able to get it deployed in just a couple years and we’ve been reaping the benefits of its research ever since.

    Yeah, Constellation was such a success that independent, blue-ribbon panels rubber stamped it to go forward without termination or change.

    Stop wasting the forum’s time with idiotic statements. Think before you post.

    “Use of the SRB on Ares is an opportunistic and practical reuse of useful technology which would have accelerated development of post-shuttle launch architecture.”

    Yeah, it accelerated it all the way to 2017-2019 with another $5 billion per year boost or $25-35 billion increase to NASA’s total budget.

    Meanwhile, the first commercial LV/capsule is scheduled to launch before the end of this year at a cost to the taxpayer of $278 million.

    Don’t make idiotic statements out of ignorance.

    “That is, if Obama hadn’t sabotaged the Bush plan.”

    Griffin and Constellation sabotaged the Bush Administration’s VSE plan. The Augustine committee provided options to the Obama Administration that effectively restored the VSE. The Obama Administration chose one of those options.

    Don’t make idiotic statements out of ignorance.

    “Look at the published Lockmart Plymouth Rock proposal, the exploration mission that Obama supposedly supports. The mass/energy requirements are substantial…”

    And they can be meet via EELV evolution, per this and other papers:

    aero.org/conferences/planetarydefense/2007papers/P1-8–LeCompte-Paper.pdf

    And since you havn’t been able to follow them after two threads, here’s the step-by-step instructions for getting to the paper again. I know it’s hard for you, but concentrate and try really, really hard to follow along.

    1) Use your mouse to highlight the web address. That’s the letters starting with “aero” and ending in “pdf”.

    2) Copy the web address. That’s the command where you press the “CTRL” button and the “C” button on your keyboard simultaneously. “Simultaneously” means together, at the same time.

    3) Paste the web address into your browser window. The window browser is at the top of your screen and starts with the letters “http://www.” Pasting is the command where you press the “CTRL” button and the “V” button on you keyboard simultaneously. Remember, “simultaneously” means together, at the same time.

    4) If you’ve done steps 1 through 4 correctly, then the web address should appear in your browser window. Remember, the web address is the letters starting with “aero” and ending in “pdf”.

    5) Type the letters “http://www.” at the beginning of the web address if they’re not already there. The beginning of the web address is before the letters “aero”.

    6) Hit the “enter” button on your keyboard. You web browser will now take you to the paper.

    7) When you’re at the paper, read it, try to comprehend it, and think really, really hard about it before you post back here.

    Keep trying little guy. You’re almost there.

  • Robert G. Oler

    Matt Wiser wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    yeah remember that when the screens at the FCR go dark…

    Robert G. oler

  • Coastal Ron

    amightywind wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 1:59 pm

    That Earth Departure Stage is featured prominently.

    You’ve been drinking the Constellation kool-aid for so long, that power-point presentations seem like real hardware to you. They’re not.

    LM makes lots of presentations, and whose to say they didn’t reuse the Constellation graphics to save money. Or it could be that they were in the running for building the EDS or Altair, and don’t want to burn any bridges.

    Nevertheless, their joint venture with Boeing (ULA) has been promoting exploration with their existing Delta IV and Atlas V products, so it’s not like they are shunning using EELV’s, or any other launchers. Boeing even mentions Falcon 9 as a possible launcher for their CST-100, so I think the only thing your can infer is that power-point presentations are “what-ifs”, and nothing else.

  • MrEarl

    oler:
    “I am told by a chum who Whittington has met, who is the former Chief of Staff (and in that role is where Whittington and Kolker met him) to a senior TX senator and who now is a pretty big lobbiest on K street…that what killed the Nelson notion and any real specific instructions of a SDV is that they took a look at the cost figures that JSC came up with and had sticker shock. ”

    The “information”, more like rumor, that you are trying to spread here doesn’t even come from a source with first hand knowledge of this. The rumor can not be verified and you have nothing to back it up.

    Come back with some real verifiable information or shut up!

  • amightywind

    Major Tom

    In an effort to carry on a discussion I again tried pasting your link


    This webpage is not available.
    The webpage at http://aero.org/conferences/planetarydefense/2007papers might be temporarily down or it may have moved permanently to a new web address.

    I have no confidence in your ability to use web citations to support your argument. Therefore your arguments are meaningless, ergo you lose the argument. Why is is so difficult to test a link?

  • Robert G. Oler

    MrEarl wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    actually it is first hand knowledge as the person I am referencing is a lobbiest for one of the major aerospace firms…and it is far harder data then the efforts you have misinterpreted from NASAspaceflight.com.

    NASA HSF is like the end song on an ELO album, the power is going off slowly

    Robert G. Oler

  • amightywind

    Coastal Ron wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 2:24 pm

    You’ve been drinking the Constellation kool-aid for so long, that power-point presentations seem like real hardware to you. They’re not.

    The delta vee requirements for a Plymouth Rock mission are real and easily show on PowerPoint. If you want to refute them you need to cite a source. Otherwise, don’t waste our time. An insult is not an argument.

  • MrEarl

    Ok oler, who is it?

  • MrEarl

    So you want everyone to dismiss authoritative, verifiable information from a trusted source that anyone can read and draw their own conclusions from, for the ramblings of a biased poster on a blog who references some mysterious un-named source who’s own objectivity is in question seeing that they are a lobbyist for some un-know company or interests group.

    What a troll!

  • byeman

    “You are right” applies to everything I posted. You didn’t discredit one thing I said

    1. ULA is separate entity, it is no longer Boeing or Lockheed.
    2. You are misinformed as usual. It is 21/22 vs 12.5/13. QED
    3. Because LM would make more money with the POS POR

    Go play with your medical devices and let the experts deal with spaceflight

  • Martijn Meijering

    The delta vee requirements for a Plymouth Rock mission are real and easily show on PowerPoint.

    What is it about refueling at L1/L2 that you don’t understand?

  • amightywind

    What is it about refueling at L1/L2 that you don’t understand?

    I know you are interested in it. Can you point to others who have done analysis? What advantage is there propelling a spacecraft to L1 & L2. You *still* have to accelerate a large spacecraft to 95% of escape velocity to reach them. How will you do that? Seems to me it takes a high energy stage. Then you have to climb out of the well. Will it increase the number of accessible NEO’s? Will it reduce total mission time? What does it mean for the size of the Orion service module.

    Something like this would be appreciated.

  • Coastal Ron

    amightywind wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    What advantage is there propelling a spacecraft to L1 & L2.

    Because you can use an existing booster like Centaur or the ULA ACES family, and then fuel up when you get there. You’re mass requirements getting off the Earth drop dramatically, which means you can use existing launchers. The end result is the same, but you spend less money, and most of the technology has already been tested.

    Can you point to others who have done analysis?

    ULA has already proposed a Moon mission that utilizes ACES hardware and Lagrange fuel depots:

    http://www.unitedlaunchalliance.com/site/docs/publications/AffordableExplorationArchitecture2009.pdf

  • Martijn Meijering

    Can you point to others who have done analysis?

    See the Huntress report I mentioned earlier:

    http://www.lpi.usra.edu/lunar/strategies/AdvisoryGroupReports/iaa_report.pdf

    What advantage is there propelling a spacecraft to L1 & L2.

    A whole range of advantages, some of which were mentioned by Ron.

    - you can use existing upper stages to get there
    - you can use hypergolics from there onward without too much of a performance penalty so you can make immediate use of refueling
    - you can return to L1/L2 propulsively without enormous costs which makes reuse of the MTV much easier
    - you can use SEP to preposition propellant, increasing average Isp and reducing IMLEO
    - you need much less thrust than from LEO
    - no problems with nodal regression
    - better thermal environment

    And probably some more advantages that I forgot to mention.

  • Martijn Meijering

    Will it increase the number of accessible NEO’s?

    Yes, refueling does that for you. You lop off 3.2 km/s from your delta-v, but you have to add another ~0.6km/s for your initial perigee lowering burn. The total mass of a hypergolic departure stage is limited by the dry mass a Centaur can take to L1/L2, because the propellant is easily divisible. The dry mass limit is around 17mT, which is enormous. If necessary you could even use two.

    You can reach Mars orbit this way, let alone NEOs.

  • Bennett

    I love the first paragraph of the Summary:

    “The proposed lunar architecture illuminates how the powerful leveraging effects of simple orbital depots can enable small expendable launch vehicles, compatible with existing DoD and commercial payload needs, to establish, support and expand a lunar base with a continuous human presence. The costs and protracted schedule associated with the development of extremely large boosters and multiple in-space stages can be eliminated and the resources applied to the lunar lander, propellant tankers and depots built around a common in-space stage. The simplicity of the architecture enables development that actually fits within projected budgets which is in sharp contrast to the present approach. The door to lunar exploration is presently shut due being simply unaffordable with the present architecture. The proposed architecture reopens that door.”

  • Robert G. Oler

    MrEarl wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    So you want everyone to dismiss authoritative, verifiable information from a trusted source that anyone can read and draw their own conclusions ..

    is that how you are describing the information at NASAspaceflight.com?

    goofy

    there is no information there that is factual. The Senate Bill does nothing of the kind that they are indicating.

    If Whittington wants to say that my friend is fictional and that we never met in his office. he wont because he wont lie and Kolker would tell him that he is full of something.

    Robert G. Oler

  • MrEarl

    No oler, what’s “goofy” is for you to expect people to take your hearsay as truth or fact.
    Are you denying the information put forth by NASAspaceflght.com? Do you have any evidence to back it up? No, you don’t.

    This isn’t about my information. It’s at the link I supplied for everyone to read for themselves. The Senate bill and accompanying report is in the public domain. You can draw your own conclusions.

    Until you have something of substance to contribute go crawl back under your bridge like a good little troll.

  • Robert G. Oler

    MrEarl wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 6:33 pm

    you can draw your own conclusions just dont be surprised if someone challenges the basis on which they are drawn.

    The article at NASAspaceflight is just another in the endless bit of cheerleading for a heavy lift, particularly for a SDV and certainly for DIRECT that is done there.

    It is not very objective.

    Robert G. Oler

  • DCSCA

    Meanwhile, in the real world…

    Another day moves from dawn to dusk;
    And still no humans flown by Musk.
    The clocks tick-tock; the calendar flies;
    But no manned Dragons cross our skies.

  • MrEarl

    You’re in rare form today robert. You didn’t even read the piece so how can you comment on it? The link took you directly to a PDF of the presentation that the HEFT team gave to Bolden and Garver, no NASAspaceflight.com cheerleading.

    You have yet to reveal who your “chum” is, or to make any attempt to validate your claim of what he said to you. There’s no proof that you know him that well, it at all, no proof that he’s in a position to know anything about NASA’s current plans for HSF or that he talked to you about it at all!

    “It is not very objective.”
    So I guess we’re supposed to take at face value that you and your imaginary friend are objective.
    Goofy

  • Robert G. Oler

    MrEarl wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 7:43 pm

    No, I have read the presentation, I got it on a USB memory stick as soon as it was done, no need to filter through NASAspaceflight.com…I am pretty well tied in here in houston, that is why I have been mocking it for so long …5 billion dollars for a solar power satellite (at least) that makes 1.5KW…goofy

    No, you dont get my friends name. He is a lobbiest and that means if he sends me stuff that he gets from the people he represents or tells me about what is going on on the big hill…I dont want him to have feedback on it.

    Having said that…I’ve gotten it just about correct. You will love the future without NASA HSF…it is going to be “something wonderful” (I hope)

    Robert G. Oler

  • MrEarl

    Riiiiiiight…

    Poor pitiful oler, wishing he was something he’s not.

  • Major Tom

    “Major Tom

    In an effort to carry on a discussion I again tried pasting your link

    This webpage is not available.
    The webpage at http://aero.org/conferences/planetarydefense/2007papers might be temporarily down or it may have moved permanently to a new web address.”

    Reread step #5, genius.

    “5) Type the letters ‘http://www.’ at the beginning of the web address if they’re not already there. The beginning of the web address is before the letters ‘aero’.”

    And here’s an extra hint — it’s called the “World Wide Web” for a reason.

    Keep trying, little guy. You’ll eventually get it.

    “I have no confidence in your ability to use web citations to support your argument.”

    I have zero confidence in your ability to read and follow instructions for third-graders or navigate the web at a second-grade level.

    “Therefore your arguments are meaningless, ergo you lose the argument.”

    Yes, because you can’t find the letters “www” on your keyboard, I’ve lost the argument.

    Oy vey…

  • brobof

    Robert G. Oler wrote @ September 1st, 2010 at 8:05 pm
    “…5 billion dollars for a solar power satellite (at least) that makes 1.5KW…goofy”
    20 MW (max) Antenna output needs a 7 km dia Rectenna for max input.
    Experiment intends a 150 METRE dia. Rectenna…

    And what’s worse you aren’t even consistant with your misinformation! Last week it was 1kW. But at least you are heading in the right direction.
    “demonstration should yield between 0.25 and 1.0 kWe”
    http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2010/07/sd-hlv-early-sps-demonstration-risk-assessment/ refers

    ““The purposes of the demonstration would be to:

    a) Demonstrate the deployment and operations of a prototype SPS at GEO.

    b) Validate the cost and operational utility of the HLV to support large payload deployment to GEO.

    c) Test a Hall-effect thruster upper stage for operations to GEO and cis-lunar space.

    d) Validate the SSP received energy density and power conversion efficiency estimates.

    e) Demonstrate useful amount of power delivery to a test rectenna system on the ground.””
    (ibid.)

    A useful paper on the subject:
    “Wireless Power Transmission for Solar Power Satellite”

    Comment is free, but facts are sacred!

  • Robert Fasnacht

    Comment is free, but facts are sacred!

    Oh really? Science has a completely different view of ‘facts’ – see for instance, classical mechanics and general relativity. Your world view is very naive.

    Just take one look at the media and corporate propaganda in the states, political lobbying etc., and you can kiss your ‘facts’ goodbye. One word : OJ.

  • brobof

    Robert Fasnacht wrote @ September 2nd, 2010 at 10:34 am

    Er you didn’t read the link did you.

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