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Space Transfer Concepts and Analyses for Exploration Missions (STCAEM) (1991)

Triton

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Space transfer concepts and analysis for exploration missions. Implementation plan and element description document. Volume 1: Major trades. Book 1: Draft final

Abstract:
This document presents trade studies and reference concept designs accomplished during a study of Space Transfer Concepts and Analyses for Exploration Missions (STCAEM). This volume contains the major top level trades, level 2 trades conducted in support of NASA's Lunar/Mars Exploration Program Office, and a synopsis of the vehicles for different propulsion systems under trade consideration. The vehicles are presented in more detail in other volumes of this report. Book 1 of Volume 1 covers the following analyses: lunar/Mars commonality trades, lunar/Mars mission operations, and Mars transfer systems.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930013159_1993013159.pdf


Space transfer concepts and analysis for exploration missions. Implementation plan and element description document. Volume 1: Major trades. Book 2: Draft final

Abstract:
Topics addressed are: (1) an artificial gravity assessment study; (2) Mars mission transport vehicle (MTV)/Mars excursion vehicle (MEV) mission scenarios; (3) aerobrake issues; (4) equipment life and self-check; (5) earth-to-orbit (ETO) heavy lift launch vehicle (HLLV) definition trades; and (6) risk analysis.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930013770_1993013770.pdf


Space transfer vehicle concepts and requirements, volume 2, book 1

Abstract:
The objective of the systems engineering task was to develop and implement an approach that would generate the required study products as defined by program directives. This product list included a set of system and subsystem requirements, a complete set of optimized trade studies and analyses resulting in a recommended system configuration, and the definition of an integrated system/technology and advanced development growth path. A primary ingredient in the approach was the TQM philosophy stressing job quality from the inception. Included throughout the Systems Engineering, Programmatics, Concepts, Flight Design, and Technology sections are data supporting the original objectives as well as supplemental information resulting from program activities. The primary result of the analyses and studies was the recommendation of a single propulsion stage Lunar Transportation System (LTS) configuration that supports several different operations scenarios with minor element changes. This concept has the potential to support two additional scenarios with complex element changes. The space based LTS concept consists of three primary configurations--Piloted, Reusable Cargo, and Expendable Cargo.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930007497_1993007497.pdf


Space transfer concepts and analysis for exploration missions. Implementation plan and element description document (draft final). Volume 2: Cryo/aerobrake vehicle

Abstract:
The cryogenic/aerobrake (CAB) and the cryogenic all-propulsive (CAP) concept designs developed in support of the Space Transfer Concepts and Analysis for Exploration Missions (STCAEM) study are presented. The evolution of the CAB and CAP concepts is described along with the requirements, guidelines and assumptions for the designs. Operating modes and options are defined and systems descriptions of the vehicles are presented. Artificial gravity configuration options and space and ground support systems are discussed. Finally, an implementation plan is presented which addresses technology needs, schedules, facilities, and costs.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930014062_1993014062.pdf


Space transfer concepts and analysis for exploration missions. Implementation plan and element description document (draft final). Volume 3: Nuclear thermal rocket vehicle

Abstract:
This document presents the nuclear thermal rocket (NTR) concept design developed in support of the Space Transfer Concepts and Analysis for Exploration Missions (STCAEM) study. The evolution of the NTR concept is described along with the requirements, guidelines and assumptions for the design. Operating modes and options are defined and a systems description of the vehicle is presented. Artificial gravity configuration options and space and ground support systems are discussed. Finally, an implementation plan is presented which addresses technology needs, schedules, facilities and costs.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930013771_1993013771.pdf


Space transfer concepts and analysis for exploration missions. Implementation plan and element description document (draft final). Volume 4: Solar electric propulsion vehicle

Abstract:
This document presents the solar electric propulsion (SEP) concept design developed as part of the Space Transfer Concepts and Analysis for Exploration Missions (STCAEM) study. The evolution of the SEP concept is described along with the requirements, guidelines and assumptions for the design. Operating modes and options are defined and a systems description of the vehicle is presented. Artificial gravity configuration options and space and ground support systems are discussed. Finally, an implementation plan is presented which addresses technology needs, schedules, facilities, and costs.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930013804_1993013804.pdf


Space transfer concepts and analysis for exploration missions. Implementation plan and element description document (draft final). Volume 5: Nuclear electric propulsion vehicle

Abstract:
The nuclear electric propulsion (NEP) concept design developed in support of the Space Transfer Concepts and Analysis for Exploration Missions (STCAEM) study is presented. The evolution of the NEP concept is described along with the requirements, guidelines, and assumptions for the design. Operating modes and options are defined and a systems description of the vehicle is presented. Artificial gravity configuration options and space and ground support systems are discussed. Finally, an implementation plan is presented which addresses technology needs, schedules, facilities and costs.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930013801_1993013801.pdf


Space transfer concepts and analysis for exploration missions. Implementation plan and element description document (draft final). Volume 6: Lunar systems

Abstract:
NASA's two Office of Space Flight (Code M) Space Transfer Vehicle (STV) contractors supported development of Space Exploration Initiative (SEI) lunar transportation concepts. This work treated lunar SEI missions as the far end of a more near-term STV program, most of whose missions were satellite delivery and servicing requirements derived from Civil Needs Data Base (CNDB) projections. Space Transfer Concepts and Analysis for Exploration Missions (STCAEM) began to address the complete design of a lunar transportation system. The following challenges were addressed: (1) the geometry of aerobraking; (2) accommodation of mixed payloads; (3) cryogenic propellant transfer in Low Lunar Orbit (LLO); (4) fully re-usable design; and (5) growth capability. The leveled requirements, derived requirements, and assumptions applied to the lunar transportation system design are discussed. The mission operations section includes data on mission analysis studies and performance parametrics as well as the operating modes and performance evaluations which include the STCAEM recommendations. Element descriptions for the lunar transportation family included are a listing of the lunar transfer vehicle/lunar excursion vehicle (LTV/LEV) components; trade studies and mass analyses of the transfer and excursion modules; advanced crew recovery vehicle (ACRV) (modified crew recovery vehicle (MCRV)) modifications required to fulfill lunar operations; the aerobrake shape and L/D to be used; and some costing methods and results. Commonality and evolution issues are also discussed.
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19930013818_1993013818.pdf
 

bobbymike

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https://www.space.com/38696-vintage-nuclear-rocket-could-reach-mars.html
 

blackstar

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bobbymike said:
https://www.space.com/38696-vintage-nuclear-rocket-could-reach-mars.html

As much as I think that Nuclear Thermal Propulsion is a good idea for human Mars exploration, I just cannot see it happening. The article raises a few relevant issues, but there are others:

-a lot of the drawings, blueprints and documentation from the NERVA program was lost (or never really existed)
-almost everybody who worked on it is dead
-the technology has changed (for example, some materials used in the 1960s in reactors were discontinued decades ago and nobody makes them, requiring new materials)
-the environmental regulations have changed (no more open air testing in the desert)
-there are far fewer nuclear engineers today than there were in the 1960s, the field has grown old and sclerotic
-this is just going to be ridiculously expensive

A colleague has worked on RTG and plutonium issues for awhile and explained that even something that is really simple, like RTGs and isotopes, has turned out to take a lot longer and cost a lot more than you would expect. The reason is that a lot of the facilities and equipment has gotten very old and decrepit, requiring new equipment and the certification of new techniques. Now imagine doing that for something that we have even less experience with. We're pretty much going to be re-inventing nuclear thermal propulsion all over again. And there is no humans to Mars program to justify that expenditure. Even NASA human spaceflight officials have said that NTP is not required for initial missions to Mars, and if you're not going to fund it then, you're not going to fund it ever.
 

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