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ЦитатаNASA still making the case for commercial crewBY STEPHEN CLARKSPACEFLIGHT NOWPosted: November 30, 2012NASA's top administrators, baffled by continued congressional resistance to funding the agency's commercial crew program, this week said supporters should revamp how they advocate for privatized human spaceflight. File photo of NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls After the retirement of the space shuttle, NASA is turning to the private sector to supply U.S. crew transportation to the International Space Station. Until a domestic provider becomes operational, NASA has procured astronaut seats on Russian Soyuz vehicles. Скрытый текст: The commercial crew transportation initiative was announced by the Obama administration in February 2010, but nearly three years later, NASA's top managers are still selling the program's merits to lawmakers. In August, NASA announced Boeing Co., SpaceX and Sierra Nevada Corp. won agreements to receive up to $1.1 billion through May 2014 to continue designing and testing human-rated commercial rockets and spaceships. NASA expects at least one of the companies will have an operational crew transportation system by 2017. Concerned that NASA was shortchanging other priorities, including the government-owned Space Launch System and Orion exploration programs, Congress declined to appropriate the White House's requested funding for the commercial crew program for the last two years. The space agency is spending less than half the money it said it needed for fiscal year 2013, which began Oct. 1. Congress was unable to pass a federal budget before the last fiscal year's spending package expired, and lawmakers extended funding to NASA and other agencies at fiscal 2012 levels. The continuing resolution runs until March 27 and extends the commercial crew program's $406 million annual budget for the first six months of fiscal 2013, affecting the rate at which the program can spend money. The Obama administration proposed giving the commercial crew program $830 million in fiscal 2013. "We are obviously not communicating this well," said Lori Garver, NASA's deputy administrator, who said the agency has had a tough time selling commercial crew transportation and technology development funding on Capitol Hill. "I can't believe we're losing this argument." So far, NASA expects the commercial crew milestones to remain on schedule through the timeframe of the continuing resolution, according to Candrea Thomas, an agency spokesperson. Even if Congress passes a spending bill with additional commercial crew funding, it is unlikely the program will receive a budget near the White House's request. That is because the commercial crew budget for the first six months of fiscal 2013 was less than 50 percent of the Obama administration proposal, meaning any boost in the budget for the second half of fiscal 2013 would have to go beyond the White House request just to meet the funding level NASA anticipated. NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, speaking to the NASA Advisory Council on Wednesday, said commercial transportation is "absolutely essential to the success and survival of the International Space Station. Unless we want to be dependent [on Russia] for time immemorial to get crews and cargo the station, then we have to have an American capability." In its latest agreement with the Russian space agency, NASA is paying nearly $63 million per round-trip seat on Soyuz missions. NASA expects domestic carriers to charge less than Russia's price. Earlier this year, lawmakers led by Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., pushed NASA to sel ect one company to continue the next phase of commercial crew development. NASA officials fought back, saying multiple companies should continue work, ensuring competition and lowering total costs. Wolf is chairman of the House appropriations subcommittee responsible for drafting NASA's budget. Wolf and Bolden agreed in June - after a successful test flight by SpaceX, one of the most visible commercial crew competitors - that NASA would ensure continued competition by selecting two companies for full funding awards in the next phase of the program. Boeing and SpaceX won agreements worth $460 million and $440 million, respectively, to work on their CST-100 and Dragon capsules. Sierra Nevada was selected to continue development of the Dream Chaser lifting body spacecraft at a slower pace, receiving an award worth up to $212 million. "In a nation that was established on free speech and public dialogue, there is no public dialogue on space and human exploration," Bolden said. "The only way to do that is out-and-out duking it out with the Congress. It's an opportunity we have to engage, and it's the closest thing we have to public dialogue. I wish we did it more in public forums." File photo of NASA deputy administrator Lori Garver. Credit: NASA/Paul E. Alers Despite the progress, the backlash fr om Congress and many aerospace veterans, including Apollo-era astronauts, on the commercial crew program does not sit well with Garver. Скрытый текст: "We somehow have not characterized it in a way that's been able to get those types of people who absolutely should believe in what we're doing to see that it's going to allow NASA to advance that much more quickly and positively," Garver told a NASA advisory panel Monday. Garver then launched into rebuttals of several arguments used by critics of commercial spaceflight. "The safety issue? In view, this country trusts the private sector will all types of safety issues beyond what we're discussing here," Garver said. "Welfare to billionaires? How can our program be considered welfare to billionaires, when we don't talk about that with companies we do business with now, who don't take financial risks? Isn't that welfare?" One feature of NASA's pacts with commercial spaceflight companies is the agreements are public-private partnerships. Each firm is expected to provide private investment to go along with government funding, and companies take on any budget overruns. "Facts are facts, and we need to be able to communicate this," Garver said. "I don't think it is productive to have that kind of misinformation out there, when our commercial programs allow us to return the best value to the taxpayers." Garver highlighted the commercial program's ability to ignite innovation, create jobs, and return the U.S. commercial space industry - including the launch services business - to a leadership position in a hotly competitive environment with Europe, Russia and China. "People think spaceflight is over because the shuttle is not flying," Garver said. "It's part of this overall communications challenge that we have to let people know NASA is not over." Garver said: "We aren't going to just keep doing the same things over and over because that's not what advances the economy and society."
ЦитатаCommercial Crew Program GoalsSpaceX has an ambitious schedule of seven milestones to complete this year under the NASA-funded commercial crew program which is aimed at transforming the Dragon freighter into a crew vehicle and human rating the Falcon 9 booster.The company's efforts this year are set to culminate in a pad abort test in December. SpaceX is eligible for up to $440 million during this phase of the commercial crew program, which ends in 2014.CCiCAP Milestones for 2013 Скрытый текст: 5. Pad Abort Test Review. SpaceX will hold a Pad Abort Test Review to demonstrate the maturity of the pad abort test article design and test concept of operations. March 2013 - $20 Million6. Human Certification Plan Review. SpaceX will hold a Human Certification Plan Review to present the Human Certification Plan. This Human Certification Plan Review will cover plans for certification of the design of the spacecraft, launch vehicle, and ground and mission operations systems. May 2013 - $50 Million7. On-Orbit and Entry Preliminary Design Review (PDR). SpaceX will hold an On-Orbit and Entry Preliminary Design Review (PDR) to demonstrate that the overall CTS preliminary design for orbit, rendezvous and docking with the ISS, and entry flight regimes meets all requirements with acceptable risk and within schedule constraints and that it establishes the basis for proceeding with detailed design. July 2013 - $35 Million8. In-Flight Abort Test Review. SpaceX will hold an In-Flight Abort Test Review to demonstrate the maturity of the in-flight abort test article design and test concept of operations. September 2013 - $10 Million9. Safety Review. SpaceX will hold a Safety Review at the SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, CA, or a nearby facility to demonstrate that the CTS design is progressing toward meeting the Commercial Crew Program's safety goals. October 2013 - $50 Million10. Flight Review of Upgraded Falcon 9. SpaceX will conduct a review of a launch of the upgraded Falcon 9 launch vehicle demonstrating the operation of enhanced first-stage M1D engines, stage separation systems, enhanced second-stage MVacD engine and mission-critical vehicle telemetry during flight. Demonstration of the upgraded launch vehicle will serve as a risk reduction for the planned inflight abort test. November 2013 - $011. Pad Abort Test. SpaceX will conduct a pad abort test of the Dragon spacecraft. The scenario where an abort is initiated while the CTS is still on the pad is a design driver for the launch abort system as it dictates the total impulse and also requires parachute deployment in close proximity to the ground. December 2013 - $30 MillionTOTAL: $195 Million
ЦитатаSpace 2013: Boeing to Tackle 13 Commercial Crew MilestonesPosted by Doug Messieron January 8, 2013, at 5:18 amBoeing's CST-100 spacecraft will use landing bags. (Credit: Boeing)The Boeing Company has a big job ahead in 2013 in the development of its seven-person CST-100 spacecraft. The company is scheduled to complete 13 milestones out of a total of 19 as part of the NASA funded Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCAP) program. Скрытый текст: Some of the key milestones for the coming year include: Service Module Propulsion System Critical Design Review Launch Vehicle Adapter Critical Design Review Emergency Detection System (EDS) Standalone Testing.Boeing completed the first three of its 19 milestones last year for $126.9 million. The company is scheduled to complete an additional three milestones during the first four months of 2014.A full list of 2013 milestones are shown below.4. Software Integrated Engineering Release 2.0. Boeing shall demonstrate the software release [REDACTED] closed loop with guidance, Navigation & Control (GN &C) for the flight ascent phase. January 2013 - $20.4 Million5. Landing & Recovery/Ground Communication Design Review. Boeing shall conduct a Landing & Recovery / Ground Communication Design Review which establishes the baseline plan, for equipment, and infrastructure for conducting CST-100 spacecraft flight operations fulfilling both ground communications and landing and recovery operations. January 2013 - $28.8 Million6. Launch Vehicle Adapter (LVA) Preliminary Design Review (PDR). The LVA PDR demonstrates that the preliminary design meets requirements with acceptable risk and within the cost and schedule constraints and establishes the basis for proceeding with detailed design. February 2013 - $45.5 Million7. Integrated Stack Force and Moment Wind Tunnel Test. Boeing shall develop a test matrix, fabricate the necessary test models, and perform an integrated launch vehicle force and moment wind tunnel test to validate predictions on integrated Crew Module (CM)/Service Module (SM)/Launch Vehicle (LV) stack for ascent. April 2013 - $37.8 Million8. Dual Engine Centaur (DEC) Liquid Oxygen Duct Development Test. Boeing shall complete a Dual Engine Centaur Liquid Oxygen Duct Development Test. May 2013 - $21.5 Million9. Orbital Maneuvering and Attitude Control (OMAC) Engine Development Test. Boeing shall complete the OMAC Engine development test to support component, subsystem and CST-100 vehicle level development. July 2013 - $50.2 Million10. Spacecraft Primary Structures Critical Design Review (CDR). A Spacecraft Primary Structures CDR confirms that the requirements, detailed designs, and plans for test and evaluation form a satisfactory basis for fabrication, assembly and structural testing. October 2013 - $8.6 Million11. Service Module Propulsion System Critical Design Review. Boeing shall perform a Service Module (SM) Propulsion System Critical Design Review (CDR) after major SM Propulsion components have completed their individual CDR. CDR confirms that the requirements, detailed designs, and plans for test and evaluation form a satisfactory basis for production and integration. November 2013 - $7.5 Million12. Mission Control Center Interface Demonstration Test. The Mission Control Center (MCC) Interface Demonstration Test demonstrates the linkage between the MCC and the Boeing Avionics Software Integration Facility which is a precursor to integrated simulation capability for flight operations training.September 2013 - $7.9 Million13. Launch Vehicle Adapter Critical Design Review. Boeing shall complete a Launch Vehicle Adapter (LVA) Critical Design Review (CDR). CDR confirms that the requirements, detailed designs, and plans for test and evaluation form a satisfactory basis for production and integration. September 2013 - $13.5 Million14. Emergency Detection System (EDS) Standalone Testing. Boeing shall complete the Initial EDS Testing - Launch Vehicle Stand-alone. October 2013 - $13.8 Million15. Certification Plan Review. Boeing shall complete a review of the CCTS Certification Plan which defines our strategy leading to a crewed flight test. November 2013 $5.8 Million16. Avionics Software Integration Lab (ASIL) Multi-String Demonstration Test. Boeing shall demonstrate the [REDACTED] flight software closed loop with GN&C for the flight ascent phase. December 2013 - $24.9 MillionTOTAL: $286.2 Million
ЦитатаNASA, industry committed to human spaceflightBy Rebecca ReganSpaceport NewsNASA's Commercial Crew Program (CCP) and its industry partners have spent the last few years investing their time, money, efforts and reputations into shaping America's next-generation human spaceflight capabilities. Скрытый текст: "This program really brings new meaning to 'skin in the game,'" said Phil McAlister, NASA Commercial Spaceflight Development director, during a televised status upd ate Jan. 9 at Kennedy Space Center.NASA and company representatives participated in the upd ate to discuss their accomplishments to date and lay out their plans for 2013 and beyond as they work toward ensuring America has safe, reliable and affordable crew transportation systems launching from U.S. soil by mid-decade."The agreements are paid-for-performance milestones, so our partners only get paid when they show demonstrative progress toward developing their crew transportation systems," McAlister said. "This allows us to ensure that our partners are making good progress and are making good use of taxpayer money." Agreements made with The Boeing Company, Sierra Nevada Corp. (SNC) Space Systems and Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) during NASA's Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) initiative are set to bring about some exciting milestones this year. Скрытый текст: Boeing is on track to pick up the keys this summer to Kennedy's former Orbiter Processing Facility-3, now called the Commercial Crew and Cargo Processing Facility (C3PF), to begin manufacturing its CST-100 spacecraft. C3PF has been undergoing modifications by Space Florida to support the clean-floor processing needs of the spacecraft. Incorporating astronaut feedback into the cockpit design and demonstrating flight software, ground operations and landing/recovery plans are on tap for 2013."Everything is focused on making sure we properly and aggressively mature the design so that we can have a very robust critical design review at the end of this phase," said John Mulholland, Boeing's Commercial Programs Space Exploration vice president and program manager. "It will give us confidence that we can move in with very low risk into the qualification and flight demonstration phase."Boeing's subcontractor, United Launch Alliance, will focus on verifying that its dual-engine Centaur can perform as planned on the Atlas V rocket and testing the launch vehicle adaptor between the spacecraft and the rocket. Pratt and Whitney Rocketdyne also will complete additional propulsion testing on the CST-100's launch abort engines. SNC is gearing up for its first free-flight test of the Dream Chaser spacecraft at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center in California early this year. During the test, the vehicle will be dropped for a full autonomous flight to demonstrate the aerodynamics and controllability during the approach-and-landing phase that culminates in a hard surface runway landing and runway rollout."The facility there has been the home of so many tests, including the shuttle tests, and we're going to be picking that mantle up and starting our first flight tests here in the first quarter of this year," said Mark Sirangelo, Sierra Nevada Corp. vice president and SNC Space Systems chairman. The company currently is testing its Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS) and reaction control system, performing landing gear tests and flight simulations. Testing of the company's hybrid rocket motors is ongoing at its facility in California.SpaceX also has ambitions to fly its Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon capsule during CCiCap. A pad abort test scheduled for late 2013 will prepare the company for an in-flight abort test in 2014."We'll end this year with a flight-like, full-scale pad abort test for certification as well as risk mitigation," said Garrett Reisman, SpaceX Commercial Crew project manager. "We're going to take a Dragon, as flight-like as possible, take it from our pad over at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and demonstrate our ability to get away from the Falcon 9 on the pad from zero altitude and zero airspeed if we were ever having a bad day on the pad."Reisman said they'll spend CCiCap stressing and bending their primary Dragon structure to prove it's ready to be manufactured. They'll culminate their agreement with an in-flight abort test during which Dragon will launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and then light up its SuperDracos to prove the abort system could safely whisk the spacecraft and its crew members away from a failing rocket and safely splash down in the Atlantic Ocean. "Having strapped into a rocket before, I can tell you that I have personal and emotional reasons of why I want to build a vehicle that is safer than anything that's ever flown before by an order of magnitude," said Riesman, who is a two-time space shuttle astronaut and International Space Station flight crew engineer. The same three CCiCap partners were awarded contracts that kick off Jan. 22. Called the Certification Products Contracts (CPC), the initiative will allow certification plans to take shape for agency missions to the International Space Station.During the conference, Blue Origin also announced its plans to continue its Commercial Crew Development Round 2 (CCDev2) partnership with NASA in an unfunded capacity.The company previously received $22 million to advance its subsystem technologies, a new Liquid Hydrogen and Liquid Oxygen engine and pusher escape system. A continuation of a CCDev2 partnership would allow the company to receive expert feedback from NASA on the progress of its engine development, biconic-shaped spacecraft and integration plans for future flights.As the companies se t out to prove their systems can be called upon for crewed missions to low-Earth orbit, the program is se tting its sights on a second phase of certification contracts for station missions, which could be announced in mid-2014."I think the partnership between NASA and each of these companies clearly shows that we have a very vibrant space industry in the United States," said Ed Mango, CCP manager. "The four companies here today are capable and are the leading edge of what it takes to get folks back into low-Earth orbit over time."
ЦитатаSpaceX Crewed Dragon: Pressing home the advantageJanuary 10, 2013 by Chris BerginWith all three Commercial Crew partners providing a status update at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) this week, SpaceX have outlined their path towards launching a crew on their Dragon spacecraft in 2015. With the advantage of already flying cargo missions on a near-human rated Dragon, SpaceX are leading the drive to return domestic crew launch capability to the United States.SpaceX Crewed Path:
ЦитатаОбама подписал закон о сотрудничестве с Россией в космосе15 января 2013, 05:22Президент США Барак Обама подписал закон о продлении сотрудничества с Россией в космической сфере до 2020 года, сообщает пресс-служба Белого дома.«Президент подписал в понедельник закон, который продлевает с 1 июля 2016 года до 31 декабря 2020 года полномочия НАСА по выплатам России за работу на Международной космической станции. Закон также продлевает на 2013 год полномочия министерства транспорта по осуществлению выплат по жалобам о причинении вреда, вызванного коммерческими запусками», - говорится в сообщении пресс-службы, передает РИА «Новости».Закон был принят конгрессом в конце декабря 2012 года
ЦитатаCommercial Crew Efforts To Be Hit Hard By SequestrationBy Jefferson MorrisFebruary 15, 2013NASA's topline budget for fiscal 2013 will be reduced by $726.7 million as compared to its budget request if sequestration takes effect March 1, with a significant portion of that cut being absorbed by the agency's efforts to nurture commercial systems for transporting crew and cargo to low Earth orbit. Скрытый текст: "Sequestration would reduce Commercial Space Flight funding by $441.6 million below the FY 2013 budget request," writes Administrator Charles Bolden in a letter to Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.).As a result, NASA would not be able to make fourth-quarter milestone payments to the industry teams working on the Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) program, including for SpaceX's Inflight Abort Test Review, Boeing's Orbital Maneuvering and Attitude Control Engine Development Test, and the Sierra Nevada Corp.'s Integrated System Safety Analysis Review #2, according to Bolden."Overall availability of commercial crew transportation services would be significantly delayed, thereby extending our reliance on foreign providers for crew transportation to the International Space Station," he says.The overall Exploration budget would see a reduction of $332.2 million as compared to its $3.9 billion fiscal 2013 request.The agency's Space Technology budget would see a steep reduction of $149.4 million, as compared to its $699 million fiscal 2013 request. As a result, NASA says it would have to consider options including canceling technology development projects; scrapping several flight demonstrations; eliminating or scaling back annual solicitations for Space Technology Research Grants, NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts and the Small Spacecraft Technology Program; reducing the number of Flight Opportunity program flights and payloads in fiscal 2013 and beyond; and eliminating the Centennial Challenges prize program.The agency's science budget would take a relatively modest hit of $51.1 million, as compared to its $4.9 billion fiscal 2013 request. This would result in reducing funding for new Explorer and Earth Venture class missions by 10-15%, and reducing competed research and analysis funding by 2%.Aeronautics would see a reduction of $7.3 million, as compared to its $551.5 million fiscal 2013 request. And the agency's construction programs would see a reduction of $251.7 million, as compared to their $619.2 million fiscal 2013 request.
ЦитатаCommercial crew program threatened by budget cutsBY STEPHEN CLARKSPACEFLIGHT NOWPosted: February 23, 2013Automatic spending cuts due to go into effect March 1 would likely extend U.S. reliance on Russia for human spaceflight, delay development of badly-needed next-generation weather satellites, and force a reduction in radar scans searching for space debris, according to Obama administration officials.Artist's concept of Boeing's CST-100 commercial crew spacecraft. Credit: Boeing That's if Congress and the White House don't act to avoid the across-the-board cuts, which will be automatically triggered at the end of next week without a compromise on how to deal with the federal government's budget deficit.NASA would lose about $894 million fr om its current budget outlook in the period between March 1 and Sept. 30, the end of fiscal year 2013.According to a letter to the chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, the space agency's commercial crew program would suffer the brunt of the budget cuts.By the second half of 2013, NASA says it will be unable to make payments to companies working on private spaceships under the agency's commercial crew program."Overall availability of commercial crew transportation services would be significantly delayed, thereby extending our reliance on foreign providers for crew transportation to the International Space Station," Bolden wrote in a letter to Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., chairwoman of the Senate Appropriations Committee.NASA has public-private partnership agreements with Boeing Co., SpaceX and Sierra Nevada Corp. to fund the design and testing of commercial spacecraft designed to carry astronauts to the space station. NASA makes payments to the companies upon completion of predetermined development milestones.Until a commercial provider becomes operational, which NASA projects by 2017, U.S. astronauts will ride Russian Soyuz spacecraft while voyaging to the space station and back to Earth. Скрытый текст: Bolden wrote the automatic cuts, known as sequestration, could cause launch delays for NASA's scientific research satellites and potential cancellations of space technology projects, such as advanced communications, radiation protection, nuclear systems and other fields.The White House and Congress agreed on the sequestration plan in 2011 as part of a compromise to raise the federal government's debt lim it. Sequestration was meant to be a "poison pill" to compel leaders in both parties to reach an agreement to rein in the budget deficit.But lawmakers could not come to a resolution, and Congress reached a deal Jan. 1 to put off the spending cuts for two months and extend current income tax rates for individuals earning less than $400,000 and households earning less than $450,000.Sequestration was originally set to go into effect at the beginning of 2013. It impacts all federal discretionary spending, slashing 8.2 percent annually from non-defense government agencies and 9.4 percent from military programs.Unless Congress and the Obama administration agree on targeted budget cuts - sparing some programs and still hitting others - every corner of the government's military, research and regulatory apparatus will see their funding reduced.Artist's concept of next-generation GOES weather satellites. Credit: NOAA NOAA's next-generation geostationary weather observatories, currently scheduled for launch in 2015 and 2017, would face a delay of two or three years if the automatic budget cuts take effect and stay in place."This delay would increase the risk of a gap in satellite coverage and diminish the quality of weather forecasts and warnings," said Rebecca Blank, acting Secretary of Commerce.Defense Department officials say sequestration would be devastating to the military, predicting thousands of furloughs and decreased combat readiness.Air Force Space Command announced Feb. 8 it would reduce some missile warning and space surveillance operations.Gen. Mark Welsh, Air Force chief of staff, told a hearing of the House Armed Services Committee on Feb. 13 that Space Command would curtail observations using secondary radars to monitor for missile attacks and track objects in orbit.The Air Force uses satellites and a network of ground-based radars for the early warning and surveillance tasks."We don't have as much redundancy now in the system and we don't have as much capacity to track objects in orbit," Welsh said.Even if sequestration takes hold, it could be short-lived. The government's current budget resolution runs out March 27, and Congress must pass another budget by then to avoid a government shutdown. The new budget could include deficit reductions directed at specific programs, instead of across-the-board cuts.