• Hi Guest! Forum rules have been updated. All users please read here.

Project Constellation

Triton

Donald McKelvy
Senior Member
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
9,723
Reaction score
221
Website
deeptowild.blogspot.com
In March 1966, Eugene Smith, an engineer at Northrop Space Laboratories in Hawthorne, California, presented a paper on a piloted Eros flyby mission using Apollo technology at the Third Space Congress in Cocoa, Florida.

David SF Portree describes the proposal at his Beyond Apollo blog:

"Manned Eros flyby (1966)"
URL: http://beyondapollo.blogspot.com/2009/09/manned-eros-flyby-1966_14.html
 

Triton

Donald McKelvy
Senior Member
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
9,723
Reaction score
221
Website
deeptowild.blogspot.com
Lockheed Martin video of Orion Initial Capability Support for Space Station

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sEMV9PwzuUo
 

SAustin16

Bravo to All Brave Test Pilots
Joined
Jan 13, 2008
Messages
131
Reaction score
2
Quick technical question.

Am I correct in understanding that the crew will remain strapped in the Orion CSM after it docks with the lander? Thus, won't the crew be subjected to negative G's when the booster re-lights accelerating the stack for TLI? Instead of being pushed back into their seats, they will be pulled toward the instrument panel?

This seems like a backward step compared to Apollo. And should manual control ever be necessary from the CSM (similar to Apollo 13), the crew would not have forward visibility.
 

blackstar

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2008
Messages
1,687
Reaction score
15
SAustin16 said:
Quick technical question.

Am I correct in understanding that the crew will remain strapped in the Orion CSM after it docks with the lander? Thus, won't the crew be subjected to negative G's when the booster re-lights accelerating the stack for TLI? Instead of being pushed back into their seats, they will be pulled toward the instrument panel?
That was the plan. But apparently the acceleration would have been rather low, so not that uncomfortable.

But all that's been canceled.
 

XP67_Moonbat

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Joined
Jan 16, 2008
Messages
2,154
Reaction score
13
"A Visual History of NASA's Project Constellation"

http://www.tallgeorge.com/projectconstellation.php
 

FutureSpaceTourist

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Joined
Mar 11, 2010
Messages
589
Reaction score
0
Triton said:
Andrews Space Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) concept circa 2005.
Andrews also worked with the Johnson Space Centre on a CEV cockpit mockup, described in a June 2006 Aviation week article. A scan of part of the article showing a photo of Andrew's proposed seating layout is on Andrews' website here (photo attached).
 

Attachments

Mr London 24/7

CLEARANCE: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2008
Messages
376
Reaction score
4
Lockheed Orion CEV construction & test:

http://www.ispcs.com/files/tiny_mce/file_manager/presentations/reightle.pdf
 

Grey Havoc

The path not taken.
Senior Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2009
Messages
9,031
Reaction score
205
There's now a fair bit of speculation in various quarters that Constellation may be revived in some form under the incoming administration.
 

sferrin

CLEARANCE: Above Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2011
Messages
12,347
Reaction score
435
Grey Havoc said:
There's now a fair bit of speculation in various quarters that Constellation may be revived in some form under the incoming administration.
Where specifically? I randomly grabbed one of your sources and not only did it not mention Constellation, it suggested Trump might be convinced not to do SLS either. Personally I think, at worst, Trump would let SLS move forward as is. As for Constellation, as I recall, it was based on a 33' diameter core (Saturn V) rather than the 27" dia. core of Shuttle, correct? I also seem to recall that one of the reasons for slimming down was that the Crawlers couldn't handle the extra weight. Are the current upgrades to the ONE crawler they're modifying suffcient to deal with Constellation? Is there any possibility of them performing similar upgrades to the second crawler?
 

Grey Havoc

The path not taken.
Senior Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2009
Messages
9,031
Reaction score
205
The Washington Post article for example (which of course I appear to have accidently excluded from my opening post over in the other thread in a previous edit, opps). As you point out though, there are a fair few technical (and associated cost) obstacles to bringing back Constellation off the bat. On the other hand, quite apart from the fact that there has been heavy criticism of Orion/SLS by likely senior members of & advisors to the incoming administration, NASA is likely to have to do over the 'upgrades' to the crawlers (not to mention other parts of the launch complex) anyhow. In particular the new biofuel engines have been a bit of a disaster both technically & cost wise if what I've heard is correct, and refurbishment / maintenance on the VAB building along with other critical infrastructure appears to have been more honoured in the breach than the observance if you get my drift.

Of course, If I was them, I would skip resurrecting Constellation altogether and go straight for a Third Generation Space Shuttle (though the currently entrenched bureaucracy would likely be a major obstacle to a necessary crash program), with SSTO work in the background (Delta Clipper at the very least) to be deployed to supplement the new (higher orbit/cislunar capable) shuttle fleet in the longer term, keeping SLS as an alternate heavy lifter in the short term. But that's just my opinion.

On a tangent, there are increasing rumblings that SpaceX may be about to land in hot water, due to Elon Musk coming under Congressional investigation for 'mislaying' billions of dollars of federal funds throughout his various enterprises. What this will mean for NASA's current commercial initiatives is anyone's guess, though it is unlikely to be good...
 

Byeman

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Joined
Jan 8, 2010
Messages
755
Reaction score
2
Grey Havoc said:
1. In particular the new biofuel engines have been a bit of a disaster both technically & cost wise if what I've heard is correct,

2. and refurbishment / maintenance on the VAB building along with other critical infrastructure appears to have been more honoured in the breach than the observance if you get my drift.

3. (higher orbit/cislunar capable) shuttle fleet in the longer term
1. What biofuels?

2. Nonsense. There has been work performed.

3. Mutually exclusive and also makes no sense. A "shuttle" is for short distances and not for long haul
 

Moose

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2010
Messages
1,078
Reaction score
52
I'm curious what anyone believes "bringing Constellation back" actually means. To me, the "most" we're likely to see is someone say "we're going to land on the moon again, Bigly!" and call that "Constellation." The idea that SLS and the supporting work would all be scrapped in favor of a quixotic effort to revive Ares 1, a 10m diameter booster, the Altair, etc etc is remarkably far-fetched. Even in today's "well, I guess that happened" environment.
 

RLBH

CLEARANCE: Secret
Joined
May 5, 2007
Messages
219
Reaction score
23
Moose said:
I'm curious what anyone believes "bringing Constellation back" actually means. To me, the "most" we're likely to see is someone say "we're going to land on the moon again, Bigly!" and call that "Constellation." The idea that SLS and the supporting work would all be scrapped in favor of a quixotic effort to revive Ares 1, a 10m diameter booster, the Altair, etc etc is remarkably far-fetched. Even in today's "well, I guess that happened" environment.
You could conceivably dust off the Altair, implement any needed changes to Orion, and call SLS something like Ares X (because the X makes it sound modern).

At that point, the guys behind DIRECT would be unsure whether to laugh or cry....
 

GeorgeA

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2006
Messages
775
Reaction score
28
If the decision is made to return to the moon's surface, I'm not sure why you wouldn't start with Altair. The design would need a scrub to make it compatible with the transportation options, but it wasn't unsound to begin with and thus is a useful point of departure for planning.

It's true that SLS Block 1B doesn't have the lift capability of Ares V's final configuration, but there are better options than Ares I for the ".5" component of the EOR option -- a Delta IV Heavy or one of the notional billionaire boosters. For any sustained manned flight campaign, the limited ability to surge SLS production and launch rates (as currently envisioned) will force us to consider a mixed launch fleet.
 

blackstar

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2008
Messages
1,687
Reaction score
15
George Allegrezza said:
If the decision is made to return to the moon's surface, I'm not sure why you wouldn't start with Altair.
Because there is no "Altair." It never got to a design phase. They were in very early studies back around 2008 (pre-Obama) when work pretty much came to a halt. Maybe those 2008 Excel spreadsheets and engineering software can be read by current computers, but any effort to design a lunar lander is going to start, if not from Square One, then from Square One Point Five.

Also, it's not clear that anybody wants to take that same approach. That was the government doing the design approach. NASA was going to establish all of the requirements and parameters, and then hand it over to a contractor. They may take an approach more like the Commercial Crew contract this time, or even have the Europeans provide the lander.
 

GeorgeA

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2006
Messages
775
Reaction score
28
Well OK Dwayne, I wasn't trying to imply that there were released engineering drawings or anything, just that the design (and there was one of a sort) was reasonably studied and forms a useful point of departure. I'm sure reading eight-year-old Office files is well within our capabilities as a nation. (I even do it myself from time to time.)

I do take your point that this might be handled as a commercial crew, performance-based approach, which would be interesting and, hopefully, more efficient.
 

blackstar

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2008
Messages
1,687
Reaction score
15
One of the things I learned from a colleague at JSC back around 2007-8 was that less was going on with Constellation and specifically Altair than you might think. JSC had its hands full finishing ISS assembly, so the number of people working on Constellation was lower than you would want for a major new development.

I remember watching a presentation at a conference about NASA's work on Altair and a lot of what they were doing was running different parameters through engineering design software and producing these massive spreadsheets of options. So 4 crew landed at an equatorial location requires X mass, and 4 crew landed at a polar location requires ? mass? They had some big spreadsheets showing all those calculations. But apparently they were not very far into nailing down even major design parameters. It was both impressive and depressing at the same time.
 

GeorgeA

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2006
Messages
775
Reaction score
28
Thanks for the background; obviously they were doing some basic engineering but as you asserted, there was no "there" there quite yet.

As you say, impressive and yet disheartening. Let's hope it's a bit more concrete this time around.

Happy Thanksgiving to all in the USA.
 

Grey Havoc

The path not taken.
Senior Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2009
Messages
9,031
Reaction score
205
https://science.slashdot.org/story/17/04/27/0332247/nasa-inspector-says-agency-wasted-80-million-on-an-inferior-spacesuit
 
Top