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A Brief History

...and a depressing one, of the Vision for Space Exploration. There's a piece missing in the chronology, though. "Safe, Simple, Soon" was not part of the original vision. That was a sales slogan that ATK came up with to promote their particular means of implementing it. As noted, though, it seems to be failing on all three counts.

Note the comment that PDR has slipped into next year.

[Update mid morning PDT]

More on the PDR slip. It's all the way out to next spring.


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Pat C wrote:

This one about CEV really got my attention:

"The "improved" vehicle is unstable, suffering from an immature and misguided set of requirements, which places trust in the electrons, valves, switches, and software required to fire thrusters to keep the capsule upright as it enters the atmosphere."

WTFO? For awhile there I thought there would be some hope that the program could be salvaged by Direct 2.0 or modified for EELVs. Now it doesn't even sound as if the crew capsule is worth pursuing.

ken anthony wrote:

statically stable on re-entry

Anything less is absolutely insane considering the reentry environment. It gives me a headache thinking about it. Do the astronauts have any political clout left to say ENOUGH! It's their lives.

Is this thinking the result of building the shuttle?

Pat C wrote:

I seem to recall Rand saying a year or two ago that this was going to be a slow-motion train wreck, and might well be the final death blow to NASA as we know it.

We can only hope. There's gotta be a better way...

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on August 26, 2008 8:31 AM.

How Big Is The Problem? was the previous entry in this blog.

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