NASA Wants Its Deep Space Gateway Habitat To Orbit The Moon By 2024

DooKey

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NASA has been thinking about the Moon for a while now, but they haven't really presented a way forward. However, they are moving forward now and have released their most detailed plan on how they will go about it. They are going to put a Deep Space Gateway in orbit around the Moon by 2024. It will be composed of three parts, Power and Propulsion Element, Airlock, and Habitat. In order to get those parts there they have to finish the SLS and Orion Spacecraft first. This is a reasonable plan and they have 6 years to get there. I'm sure they'll do it. After all, we went from scratch to the Moon in a decade. We aren't starting from scratch this time.

“Right now, our near-term focus is the Moon and returning humans there,” Kathryn Hambleton, a NASA spokesperson, tells Futurism. NASA’s teams are planning to use the space beyond Earth’s orbit near the Moon “to build up our technology capabilities, test our systems, and test our operations while we are still a few days from Earth before we are ready to take on the multi-month journey to Mars.” To do all that, though, it needs the Gateway in place.
 

THRESHIN

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I think they'll pull it off, just a matter of when. I'm skeptical of if it'll be in 6 years or not. Getting to the moon was a very different time. Loads of push from the government due to the cold war and safety? Ha! They didn't check things like we do now, it was more about getting there. I mean just look at the first attempt of a manned Apollo flight. Thing caught fire on the launch pad and they couldn't get the door open. Seems like quite the oversight, a door that can't open....
 

Korrd

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Well, at least this would give SLS something to do. But like SLS, LOP-G is hardware without a clear purpose. It's not fuel-efficient to stop at a station en route to the moon or on the return trip, nor does LOP-G offer any essential service to such a mission that couldn't be more efficiently provided by satellite (comms, remote sensing). And since NASA doesn't have current plans to put boots on the lunar surface, LOP-G seems to be largely about gaining experience managing operations in space, ostensibly because we need practice doing it further away than the ISS. Because reasons.

I have no doubt SLS will be ready by 2024, though I am interested to see whether it'll fly before BFR given both organizations' habit of missing deadlines. What I'm more skeptical about is the station modules being designed and built in time. Then there's the exorbitant cost of actually launching SLS to loft a pointless payload...

Let the Elon tweets begin.
Oh, look. A cynical post that adds nothing to the discussion. How novel.
 

Dead Parrot

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From a tech standpoint, doable. From a current budget standpoint, won't happen. Plus NASA has become too risk adverse to make this happen in 6 years. Apollo 8 was the first manned flight of the Saturn V stack and 3rd overall. NASA wants 5+ certification flights of the Block 5 Falcon before approving manned flight. And SLS hasn't even flown yet.

And if I read correctly, the current SLS launch pad will have to be rebuilt after the first launch due to some design error or similar screw up. So they will do the first SLS launch, then pause for the pad rework, then resume. And without the "End of Decade" mandate, sure to be schedule overruns.

Plus Trump is signalling that the Federal Budget is his next target. His comments about halting the Federal pay raises due to budget issues. Likely the wrong time for NASA to ask for several billion in pocket change to build and launch several SLS rockets + payload at a billion+ per.
 

katanaD

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Seems like quite the oversight, a door that can't open....

that was actually done on purpose due to the issue with the hatch potentially blowing on its own, which oddly enough happened on gus's mercury flight

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury-Redstone_4

so.. if Gus's hatch had not blown accidentally, then they would have had an explosive hatch on apollo so he would have lived through the fire
 

Chris_B

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Not content with the amount of shit orbiting the Earth, now the moon has to start getting some.
 

katanaD

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LOP-G is hardware without a clear purpose


yeah, from looking it over, it looks like nothing more than a small ISS orbiting the moon.

if they really wanted to make it useful, it would have the ability to have 1 or 2 landers that crews would take a ship from earth, dock at this station, and then take a lander down to the surface. when done the lander returns to the station docks and gets refitted for another landing mission.

but i dont see anywhere that capability
 

sfsuphysics

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Looks like a sandwich of alternating US & "International" components. So when one such "international" nation has a bad year, new election, etc effectively kiss that plan goodbye.
 

sfsuphysics

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yeah, from looking it over, it looks like nothing more than a small ISS orbiting the moon.

if they really wanted to make it useful, it would have the ability to have 1 or 2 landers that crews would take a ship from earth, dock at this station, and then take a lander down to the surface. when done the lander returns to the station docks and gets refitted for another landing mission.

but i dont see anywhere that capability
I would really like to see them making a spinning habitat of some sort. We know we can make modular components and build off that, but the science has shown us that any long term success in space is going to need some level of artificial gravity, simple resistance based exercise is not sufficient for keeping the body working like it is supposed to.
 

katanaD

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I would really like to see them making a spinning habitat of some sort


yep. but from my readings, to make it work well enough it would have to be BIG, else too small and they have to spin it fast enough it would cause people to vomit. so while very usefull, it is a longer term goal since we can barely build small right now


I was born when we were landing on the moon, and frankly, I kinda expected us to be farther along by now. Not simply talking about going back.."soon" :oops::(
 

mrp

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As a future space force candidate, I hope that's my first assignment.

Apples and Oranges NASA is not related to Space Force

From a tech standpoint, doable. From a current budget standpoint, won't happen. Plus NASA has become too risk adverse to make this happen in 6 years. Apollo 8 was the first manned flight of the Saturn V stack and 3rd overall. NASA wants 5+ certification flights of the Block 5 Falcon before approving manned flight. And SLS hasn't even flown yet.

And if I read correctly, the current SLS launch pad will have to be rebuilt after the first launch due to some design error or similar screw up. So they will do the first SLS launch, then pause for the pad rework, then resume. And without the "End of Decade" mandate, sure to be schedule overruns.

Plus Trump is signalling that the Federal Budget is his next target. His comments about halting the Federal pay raises due to budget issues. Likely the wrong time for NASA to ask for several billion in pocket change to build and launch several SLS rockets + payload at a billion+ per.
Budget did increase this past year.
Go back and read more, a second ML was commissioned to increase launch rate
Raises are to be merit based vs. automatic.
Will be accomplished with both NASA and Commercial partners, this approach allows the selection of the optimum Lunar base in the end (Orbit/Explore/Build)
 

haste.

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Plus Trump is signalling that the Federal Budget is his next target. His comments about halting the Federal pay raises due to budget issues. Likely the wrong time for NASA to ask for several billion in pocket change to build and launch several SLS rockets + payload at a billion+ per.

That's my major concern. Defunding NASA. Increasing military spending and decreasing taxes needs to be paid for somehow. 6 years is possible for a project like this, but probably unlikely unless there is some collaboration with the private sector who has proven to move at a much greater pace.
 

Verado

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I want this to happen, but I dont think we're back on the moon any time soon.
Give NASA some money please.
Think their budget atm is something like 0.4% of the federal budget. Knock it up to 0.5% and they'll get shit done.
 

PenGunn

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When the contract runs out in April next year, the Russians will not haul American asses to the ISS anymore. You'll need to get that together fairly soon.
 

Korrd

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Effectively we are.
Not at all. We've now got decades of experience designing, building, and operating launch vehicles and spacecraft. That's hardly starting from scratch. Hell, SLS is basically just shuttle components in a new arrangement and the thing's been in development for years already. Nor are we starting from scratch with building space habitats for the same reason: decades of experience with ISS.

That's my major concern. Defunding NASA. Increasing military spending and decreasing taxes needs to be paid for somehow.
I've been waiting for that shoe to drop. SLS will never be canceled for the same reason it was approved in the first place, but I worry about the impact on planetary science and robotic exploration. We've already lost some programs and had others threatened, and I don't expect that hostility to end.
 

Wrecked Em

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We need to build this before those wildlings to the south of the wall beat us to it.

P0RuaRQ.jpg
 

PaulP

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It's not a question of technology - we have what we need to make this happen. It is a question of political will, and maintaining that over multiple administrations.
 
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Spidey329

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Let the Elon tweets begin.
Surprised he hasn't offered to fix the oxygen leak on the ISS.

Was reading about it yesterday and I guess they have a repair kit on board but can't find it. Something like 15% of the inventory has gone missing over the past few years. Lol.

Their fixes so far:
- Plug it with a finger
- Gaffer tape

Apparently the tape is holding. Good thing, because I'm sure the astronaut got tired plugging it with his finger.
 
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RealBeast

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That's my major concern. Defunding NASA. Increasing military spending and decreasing taxes needs to be paid for somehow. 6 years is possible for a project like this, but probably unlikely unless there is some collaboration with the private sector who has proven to move at a much greater pace.
Just fucking tell him [Trump] that it's an essential expense for his space force, and that we'll be able to blow shit up on the moon and it'll get loads of funding. ;)
 

THRESHIN

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that was actually done on purpose due to the issue with the hatch potentially blowing on its own, which oddly enough happened on gus's mercury flight

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury-Redstone_4

so.. if Gus's hatch had not blown accidentally, then they would have had an explosive hatch on apollo so he would have lived through the fire


But that's exactly my point....a door that can't open intentionally or not isn't a good idea. They were far more concerned about meeting their goals than safety.

Many things were like this in that era. Partly for lack of understanding with emerging technologies, and partly they didn't care.

Another good untelated example was the SL-1 nuclear accident in 1961. Once the control rods dropped into the core to shut it down (reactor trip) they had to be pulled out and reconnected to the drive mechanisms by hand. Think about that for a minute. This also was the root cause of the accident.
 

Oldmodder

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But haven't they / we been flying deep space from earth for a few decades, or do those black projects not count. :)
 

haste.

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RIP Willzyx. Even with the great efforts of MASA (Mexicano Aeronáutica y Spacio Administración) it was not enough to get him back to his family on the moon. :grumpy::sour:
Oh to the contrary - He made it there, but crab people had killed his family and ruined his habitat!
 

kju1

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Not at all. We've now got decades of experience designing, building, and operating launch vehicles and spacecraft. That's hardly starting from scratch. Hell, SLS is basically just shuttle components in a new arrangement and the thing's been in development for years already. Nor are we starting from scratch with building space habitats for the same reason: decades of experience with ISS.

Most of the people who designed and built the capsules and boosters they used are long since retired or dead. I would bet that most of the people who spent time working on the shuttle have either retired or moved on as well. The last space shuttle mission was over 7 years ago.

NASA contracted out large portions of the work. Thats not in house experience. No effectively we are starting over because we havent done it in so long those skills have atrophied in the few employees they had and the contractors? Theyve probably gone over to one of the other companies that would pay them...
 

Exavior

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Anyone else see the title and imagine a shape craft designed in conjunction with the old gateway computer company meaning there would be a cow circling (jumping) over the moon? no? me either... I was just asking for a friend.
 

Korrd

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Most of the people who designed and built the capsules and boosters they used are long since retired or dead. I would bet that most of the people who spent time working on the shuttle have either retired or moved on as well. The last space shuttle mission was over 7 years ago.
Are you implying that knowledge is not passed on? That experience isn't ongoing? Everything we do builds upon accomplishments of the past; Euclid and Einstein both died long before I was born, yet we can reliably learn not only from what they learned in their lifetimes, but also everything that's been built upon that knowledge since.

We didn't forget how engineering works between the 70s and today. We've being doing it the entire time and getting better at it all the while.
 

Exavior

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Are you implying that knowledge is not passed on? That experience isn't ongoing? Everything we do builds upon accomplishments of the past; Euclid and Einstein both died long before I was born, yet we can reliably learn not only from what they learned in their lifetimes, but also everything that's been built upon that knowledge since.

We didn't forget how engineering works between the 70s and today. We've being doing it the entire time and getting better at it all the while.

In this case, yes to a degree knowledge wasn't passed on. I recall watching a show about this year's ago that stated as much. When the original rockets and everything were built all the plans where quickly destroyed to prevent them from falling into the hands of other countries. As a result over time that knowledge was lost.

As a result we have started back at step 1 and have never been able to do as good of a job as the original yet. It isn't a matter of forgetting engineering it is a matter of not being able to think in the same way to create the same solution as somebody else without having their work which was destroyed.

think of it like the pyramids. We are still impressed because we still don't know how they were built the way they were. Somebody came up with everything 1000s of years ago but we can't just sit down and reengineer the entire building process overnight.
 

kju1

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In this case, yes to a degree knowledge wasn't passed on. I recall watching a show about this year's ago that stated as much. When the original rockets and everything were built all the plans where quickly destroyed to prevent them from falling into the hands of other countries. As a result over time that knowledge was lost.

As a result we have started back at step 1 and have never been able to do as good of a job as the original yet. It isn't a matter of forgetting engineering it is a matter of not being able to think in the same way to create the same solution as somebody else without having their work which was destroyed.

think of it like the pyramids. We are still impressed because we still don't know how they were built the way they were. Somebody came up with everything 1000s of years ago but we can't just sit down and reengineer the entire building process overnight.

Or like the Washington monument for something that hits even closer to home. I remember one of the engineers working on repairing it after the earthquake being quoted in the news as saying we did not understand how they constructed blocks with such tight tolerances and it would be very difficult if not impossible to do it to that level today.
 

Korrd

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As a result over time that knowledge was lost. [...] It isn't a matter of forgetting engineering it is a matter of not being able to think in the same way
Utter tripe. We know everything there is to know about the STS. I challenge you to find one piece of the technological puzzle that we no longer understand because we can't think the same way (or even define what the actual fuck that means).
 

M76

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In this case, yes to a degree knowledge wasn't passed on. I recall watching a show about this year's ago that stated as much. When the original rockets and everything were built all the plans where quickly destroyed to prevent them from falling into the hands of other countries. As a result over time that knowledge was lost.

As a result we have started back at step 1 and have never been able to do as good of a job as the original yet. It isn't a matter of forgetting engineering it is a matter of not being able to think in the same way to create the same solution as somebody else without having their work which was destroyed.

think of it like the pyramids. We are still impressed because we still don't know how they were built the way they were. Somebody came up with everything 1000s of years ago but we can't just sit down and reengineer the entire building process overnight.
AFAIK They weren't destroyed, but there was no proper documentation of the builds themselves. They made on the spot changes during assembly and tests that the plans do not account for. And the people who made them are senile or dead by now. It's not that we forgot the technology, it's that the plans in themselves are not enough to replicate them. And it would be giant R&D nightmare to build new prototypes to find out what needs to be added. It's easier and more economical to come up with new plans from scratch using current technology and CAD, than to dig up a bunch of old drawings, and try to fill in the gaps. I think it's fud that we can't do as good as a bunch of sixties engineers did by eyeballing it. We have computer simulations, and we have CAD, they had none of that. What we lack is the limitless budget they had in the sixties.
 
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