posted on Jan, 5 2007 @ 07:43 PM
I won't pretend for even a moment to, in principle, like
the Ares I, but I am resigned to the fact that it is what the US space program is
going to get.
So, on that note, good for NASA. But I fail to see why Boeing or Lockmart couldn't man-rate the
Delta IV Heavy
or the Atlas V Heavy
less than the ~$3 Billion
(no, not a typo) that
now says it will cost to build a 5-segment 1st stage for the Ares I - with some additional costs, of course for the
5-segment SRB's for the Ares V. Cut a couple tons from the (IMHO) over-heavy Orion capsule and an EELV would be up for the job - and the extra 6-12
CCB/CBC cores per year would bring the price of EELV's down for everyone, including NASA.
*Grumble grumble grumble...* If only there was an in-house NASA design that was more cost-effective than the Ares
I, kept ATK's political connections in Washington happy, and was ultimately cheaper than the Ares I/Ares V pairing...
For the record, I do recognize the political benefits of using an SRB for the Ares I - NASA can make the R&D do double-duty when
it comes to the Ares V, it gives them a phenomenal mass-to-orbit potential, and politically it is the only way NASA will ever get another Saturn
As a taxpayer I still don't have to like it...