Selling The Senate Launch System

One of the many problems with SLS has been that there were no missions defined for it. One of its contractors, Boeing, has accordingly decided to define some lunar exploration architectures that utilize it. Of course, they don’t have any comparisons with the much cheaper alternatives that don’t. If I were SpaceX (or ULA, though for political reasons they probably can’t), I’d be putting some together.

[Update early afternoon]

Now that I think about it, Golden Spike has already done it.

5 thoughts on “Selling The Senate Launch System

  1. Mark R. Whittington

    Even though Elon Musk has expressed disinterest in the moon, I would love to see a SpaceX plan for a return effort.

    1. CT

      Were someone else care to fund the effort I’m sure Musk would be glad to see them the hardware to make it happen.

  2. DougSpace

    I find this report to be pretty concerning and makes the Lunar COTS petition all that more urgent.

    There should be two tracks:
      1) Government “exploration” and 
      2) Sustainable commercial development (public-private)

    In order to justify the SLS, this plan begins intruding into that realm which ought to be left to commercial development.  Lunar surface missions should primarily be for the development of lunar resources (i.e. ice) to establish a sustainable cis-lunar transportation infrastructure.

    L1 Gateway, L2 halo, an asteroid, Phobos, and Mars…these all can be justified as a target for SLS because they don’t have commercial value.  

    But hands off the Moon.  The OTV, lander, teleoperated surface equipment, a manned working base should be developed cost-effectively by commercial companies with support from NASA.

  3. Mike Combs

    Can anybody explain why L2 is favored over L1? The article said L2 allowed flights to any point on the lunar surface, but isn’t that equally true for L1? As a way station between LEO and Luna, L1 just makes more sense to me.

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