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NASA, Budgets, Orion and the Gateway

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posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 01:43 PM
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The International Space Station partners have endorsed plans to continue the development of the Gateway, an outpost around the moon that will act as a base to support both robots and astronauts exploring the lunar surface.

The Multilateral Coordination Board, which oversees the management of the Space Station, stressed its common hope for the Gateway to open up a cost-effective and sustainable path to the moon and beyond.

The announcement comes after several years of extensive study among space agencies who have developed a technically achievable design. The partnership includes European countries (represented by ESA), the United States (NASA), Russia (Roscosmos), Canada (CSA) and Japan (JAXA).

"We are getting ready, together, to send humans farther into the Solar System than ever before. The lunar Gateway is the next big step in human exploration and we are working to make Europe a part of it," says David Parker, ESA's human and robotic exploration director.

NASA's Orion spacecraft will transport astronauts to the Gateway. Orion is powered by the European Service Module, which will give the crewed vehicle a final push to inject it into translunar orbit.

phys.org, March 12, 2019 - Gateway to the moon.


The White House’s fiscal year 2020 budget request for NASA proposes to delay work on an upgraded version of the Space Launch System and would transfer some of that vehicle’s payloads to other rockets.

The proposal, released by the Office of Management and Budget March 11, offers a total of $21.02 billion for the space agency, a decrease of $480 million over what Congress appropriated in the final fiscal year 2019 spending bill signed into law Feb. 15.

A major element of the proposal is to defer work on the Block 1B version of the SLS, which would increase the rocket’s performance by replacing its existing Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage with the more powerful Exploration Upper Stage. The budget “instead focuses the program on the completion of the initial version of the SLS and supporting a reliable SLS and Orion annual flight cadence,” the OMB budget stated. The first SLS/Orion mission, without a crew, is now planned for the “early 2020s,” according to the budget, an apparent slip from the planned 2020 launch of Exploration Mission (EM) 1.

space.com, March 11, 2019 - NASA budget proposal targets SLS.

General read at universetoday.com: Gateway Foundation Shows off Their Plans for an Enormous Rotating Space Station.

I recently found out about The Gateway project. It is a cislunar orbiting platform (a goofy orbit around a Lagrange point) and is basically what Werner von Braun had envisioned (think of the space station in 2001: A Space Odyssey) back in the 1950s. It will, eventually, house both scientists and citizens, and be a launching platform to the moon and beyond. A "gateway" to the solar system, and hence its horrible name.

The Orion rocket was to be the workhorse delivery vehicle.

Except budget cutters pull out money and sh#can the concept before it has a chance to even start! This is after years of study and negotiations and slicing up the cake on the RACI chart on who is going to do what part.

This has been planned for years only to have the funding rug pulled from it?? That! That right there is why we have not been back to the moon! Not some big conspiracy of being planet bound by bug eyed greys. Not because we already have big, black triangles already transporting us to the Moon and Mars. Nope. Just plain old, greedy SOBs in a dead-end job with absolutely no foresight or imagination!

Me, I'll be the dreamer in the gutter, reaching for the stars! Thank you very much Oscar Wilde for the apt description!

Oh, I know they will continue forward and find a way. Everybody seems to be facing the "do more with less" hurdle. But c'mon!

Put the damn money back! I want off this rock!




posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 02:30 PM
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The Gateway’s structure consists of two concentric inner rings fixed by four spokes to an outer ring. The two concentric rings make up the Lunar Gravity Area (LGA), where the station’s rotation provides a gravitational force equal to that of the lunar surface. The external inner ring – the LGA Habitation ring – is where habitation modules will be placed, which will consist of small rooms for guests.


The outer ring, known as the Mars Gravity Area (MGA), experiences faster rotation since it is further from the core. This results in an artificial gravitational force that is similar to what would be experienced on the surface of Mars. This area will have 4 or 5 decks and be where large modules that offer permanent accommodations will be located.

universetoday.com article.

Sorry for the rant-ishness of the OP!

The Gateway would be a privately (i.e., citizen) owned with governments supporting research. A mish-mash like the International Space Station is but with more citizens (I guess I need to become a 1%-er!). Even aerospace giants like Boeing and Lockheed are seeing as contributing. Even thought I don't like the guy, Elon Musk has already promised BFR transport so the Orion setback might be absorbed.

But by tightening the belt at the wrong the time does not give me warm and fuzzy feelings.

(ETA: I think that is what I was trying to say in the OP without the rant! LOL!)

Is this the first time hearing of the Gateway? I just heard of it this year. It seems to be one of those, "That sounds so crazy it just might work!" kind of deals!

It would be nice to see a privately run step into space instead of having to enlist in the Space Force for God and Country!

2019. Almost 2020. Time for some rebranding/refresh: Never A Straight Budget!



posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 03:11 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

Thanks for this! I did a post on the Gateway about a year ago. It's nice to hear that this project stll has wings. Does anyone know how long it will take to build it?



posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 03:31 PM
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a reply to: lostbook


All I've been seeing is launches starting in the "2020s" (whatever that means). The NASA administrator says he wants boots on the lunar surface by 2028.

Lockheed is building a part (IIRC), as is Boeing. The thing will be shipped piece by piece over a bunch of flights which is one method to keep costs down (says universetoday). But no time line as to when construction begins except the "2020s"

Which if you think about it, is next year!

I'll look around some more... see if I can find anything out about how long it will take (they have module specs up at their website! The thing is huge!)



posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 03:52 PM
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a reply to: lostbook



Part of the holdup is due to the fact that much of the lunar return architecture relies on two NASA vehicles that have been stuck in development for the last decade: a massive rocket called the Space Launch System and a crew capsule called Orion. NASA plans to use these vehicles to build parts of the Gateway and transport people to and from the new station. However, the SLS has yet to fly — the first demonstration mission planned for 2020 — and both programs have suffered numerous setbacks and schedule delays, making the future timeline of the Gateway uncertain.

theverge.com - NASA wants to jump-start development of landers to take humans to the Moon.

Funny enough, the article starts off saying "In December, 2017, President signed into order..." NASA's new directive to go back to the moon. As the article quote says, they are having rocket delays which throws any time line off.

Which shows how silly it is to mandate "Go back to the moon" only to have your budget slashed 2 years later.



posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 05:16 PM
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What needs to happen is space operations need to be profitable. Nobody wants to pay for exploration that doesn't have profit as a tangible end goal.

Going to Mars is obviously a very real human desire. But I don't know how it's going to be profitable for the people who need to be committed to it in order to make it happen. Is there some resource they can mine there that would actually be profitable once it gets transported back to earth? I doubt it.

Is there anything that can be done in space cheaper than it can on earth? If not, space exploration is only going to last as long as it takes for people to get tired of paying through the nose and getting nothing but pretty pictures to show for it.

Most business people aren't even committed to humanity enough to feed homeless people. They're not going to foot the bill for establishing off-earth colonies just to ensure the survival of humanity. Now if they can exploit it and build slave colonies on other planets, that sounds more like something they'd be on board for.



edit on 12-3-2019 by BrianFlanders because: (no reason given)

edit on 12-3-2019 by BrianFlanders because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 06:44 PM
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In your 3rd link 2nd video it shows how it will be built by robotics in space and gives a timeline of 1057 days (if I am remembering correctly)
The video is very cool. Worth a watch.
Now back to see the rest of the videos in that link.
Thanks for this awesome post

edit on 05/07/18 by FreeFalling because: Wording



posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 06:49 PM
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a reply to: FreeFalling


Oh wow! I haven't watched all of them. I started at their website and knew I wanted to return so I linked it in to space research site area.

When this story about budget cuts to Orion popped up, I knew that there would be people like where this was not even on their radar!

Thanks for the info and glad to share!




posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 07:25 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

This thread made me realise how much cool 5hit I'm gonna miss when I'm dead.




posted on Mar, 12 2019 @ 10:52 PM
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a reply to: FinallyAwake

Wait to you see a Big Black Triangle!!

There is waaaayyyyy cool tech out there flying, now. This is the “other stuff” from the 50’s (and before!) they want us to focus on.

So I guess you are already missing out on cool tech (just like me). And those secrets need to end.

Which is why I talk about this. And yeah, keep an eye out for surveillance (as posted before). Oh, they are watching but not about speculative space stuff (they have time travel tech and wonder what kind of idiot I am to solve stuff that I have not published... yet. There are hints here on ATS if you are bored! And can figure it out yourself. It is basic math and I am surprised all these years later nobody has... monkeys washing potatoes in the sea and all...)

They already know and want me to spill the beans (so they don’t have to).

Like my encounter with the Greys, I hate people trying to tell me what to do (me motto being “Think for yourself, question all authority”). I have gone rouge. And they hate disorder.

I want off this rock (certain friends invited) and that scares some of “them” (a good generic term and keeps me a bit more anonymous. Or effin’ crazy!! Which some may say! So, Let It Be!!)




posted on Mar, 13 2019 @ 09:40 AM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

Need a personal assistant? Lol.



posted on Mar, 13 2019 @ 09:44 AM
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SLS on the chopping block


About time. Now watch Congress riding to the rescue again.

edit on 13-3-2019 by mightmight because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 13 2019 @ 10:43 AM
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I would like to offer myself for the position as Governor of Gateway Station.



posted on Mar, 13 2019 @ 12:29 PM
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a reply to: Nickn3



The Gateway, which won't begin to be launched to lunar orbit until the mid-2020s, will orbit the moon and serve as a jumping off point for missions to the surface and later to Mars.

phys.org, NASA requests $21 billion budget to lead the agency's return with astronauts to the moon.

Answer to lostbook's question and a major bummer to leaving the flat-earthers to fight over precious resources all Hunger Games style.

At least another 5 years before launch even starts, so a ways to go. Bummer. Would love to spend the summer at the Gateway (sure beats the Hamptons!)

I'd vote for you as governor!



posted on Mar, 14 2019 @ 02:21 AM
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originally posted by: TEOTWAWKIAIFF
a reply to: lostbook

Funny enough, the article starts off saying "In December, 2017, President signed into order..." NASA's new directive to go back to the moon. As the article quote says, they are having rocket delays which throws any time line off.

Which shows how silly it is to mandate "Go back to the moon" only to have your budget slashed 2 years later.


Sadly that's been pretty much every president since Apollo. They've all promised a return to glory that sounds great on paper, but then when they have to find the money, or suddenly decided that there are other priorities like, oh I dunno, a big wall or something, then the money for it disappears and the whole idea gets nudged under the carpet.

It has always been about money - even Apollo was as much "our capitalist system allows us to throw more resources at this than your communist one" as it was beating someone to the punch.



posted on Mar, 14 2019 @ 07:58 AM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

YEH so cool time to get up there and do some space mining !

makes me think of the belters in the expanse !



posted on Mar, 14 2019 @ 08:41 AM
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originally posted by: TEOTWAWKIAIFF


The Orion rocket was to be the workhorse delivery vehicle.


To clarify what I think you mean by "delivery vehicle", Orion is to be the be the crew capsule for trips beyond Earth, not a rocket/launch vehicle. The workhorse heavy-lift launch vehicle rocket was to be the SLS family.

The Orion Crew Vehicle is designed to be launched by a variety of launch vehicles, including Delta rockets, the SLS, or SpaceX's Falcon rockets.



posted on Mar, 15 2019 @ 12:28 PM
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a reply to: Soylent Green Is People


Yes, I was wrong in my haste to post. You are correct, crew capsule is the Orion module and SLS the re-usable rocket which they acknowledged would not be ready by next year.

But the whole budget thing is crazy.

Then, today, this story breaks, ATS: Venus may no longer be the closest planet to Earth.

With budget issues I would think that this is about the last thing you'd want to draw attention to!



posted on Mar, 15 2019 @ 12:54 PM
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a reply to: BrianFlanders




Is there anything that can be done in space cheaper than it can on earth?


Manufacturing.

In space or more so on the moon. The lack of gravity would make a great many things cheaper to manufacture.

IMO industrialization and colonization of the moon should be the first step to further expansion. The moon would be the best place to manufacture interstellar ships of great size. There are all types of ways to make leaving earths orbit cheap, but they require a large investment in infrastructure up front.

The one thing I think that has held back governments from doing so is they recognize the danger of losing control of the literal high ground. Whatever entity be it a corporation or government that takes control of space with a manufacturing ability can literally point weapons of mass at earth.

Space launched Kinetic weaponry has been on the militaries radar for a long time.




posted on Mar, 15 2019 @ 01:03 PM
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originally posted by: sapien82
a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

YEH so cool time to get up there and do some space mining !

makes me think of the belters in the expanse !



The Expanse by James S. A. Corey is a great story. I have read all the books so far. A new one comes out this month, I can hardly wait. Even in that story groups weaponize space with the ability to send large objects at planets.



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