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NASA awards contract to Bigelow Aerospace for inflatable ISS module

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posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 06:05 PM
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NASA has announced that it has awarded a US$17.8 million contract to Bigelow Aerospace to provide the International Space Station with an inflatable module. Details of the award will be discussed by NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver and Bigelow Aerospace President Robert Bigelow at a press conference on January 16 at the Bigelow Aerospace facilities in North Las Vegas. However, based on previous talks, it’s likely that the module in question could be the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module (BEAM).




I have come to the thought that NASA and Bigelow Aerospace have probably a backdoor deal with each other. And I'm not saying that in the particular conspiratorial sense that it's necessarily a bad thing. But I wonder who else made bids to provide NASA with such types of containers? I'd personally like to know who else was in the running?

More information on the NASA site of the contract..
Expanding on Bigelow’s inflatable module for the ISS
edit on 1/15/2013 by JohnnyAnonymous because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 07:12 PM
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"Space Station with an inflatable module"

If I was an astronaut, I wouldn't feel too confident. Imagine a big sign at the door :



us.ebid.net...
edit on 15-1-2013 by Trueman because: (no reason given)


jra

posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 07:15 PM
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Originally posted by JohnnyAnonymous
But I wonder who else made bids to provide NASA with such types of containers?


As far as I know, Bigelow Aerospace is the only company in the world that makes inflatable modules, so there isn't exactly any competition nor any need for a backdoor deal.

NASA was originally developing inflatable modules themselves back in the 90's, but Congress, doing what it does best, decided to cancel NASA's TransHab project. Bigelow Aerospace acquired the technology and have continued to develop it further. I really hope it all works out. Inflatable modules are actually better at dealing with space junk impacts than their solid counterparts.



posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 07:18 PM
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Originally posted by jra

Originally posted by JohnnyAnonymous
But I wonder who else made bids to provide NASA with such types of containers?


Inflatable modules are actually better at dealing with space junk impacts than their solid counterparts.


I wouldn't imagine that. Hope you are right.



posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 08:02 PM
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In-spite of their soft shell, Bigelow’s inflatable modules are more resistant to Micro Meteoroid Orbital Debris (MMOD) strikes than current metallic-shelled l ISS modules, in part due to Bigelow’s use of multiple layers of Vectran, a material which is twice as strong as Kevlar. In ground tests, MMOD objects that would penetrate ISS modules only penetrated half-way through the skin of Bigelow’s modules.


i gather that the intended use for the inflatable module would be to house extra visitors to the ISS.

kinda like pullin' out the inflatable bed when company comes over, here on Earth.



posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 08:05 PM
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No sharp objects.

Now, that would be like totally cool if they could do it without it deflating if any sharp objects do hit it.
edit on 15-1-2013 by Manhater because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 10:47 PM
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Put that thing in space where you are weightless, and you got the ultimate one of these things to bounce around in
:



edit on 1/15/2013 by Soylent Green Is People because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 01:27 AM
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Originally posted by jra
As far as I know, Bigelow Aerospace is the only company in the world that makes inflatable modules, so there isn't exactly any competition nor any need for a backdoor deal.


Yes..

I can concede to the idea of "inflatables" being currently Bigelow specific (as I can't recall anyone else trying), my query was in regards to other habitable "modules/containers". At one time I read about several companies one in Japan and another (I believe Italian) that were attempting to build and compete for contracts.

The Transhab concept dates back to about 1990's? I hadn't recalled it right away till you brought it up. I do remember that it was GoodYear (The rubber Company) that first suggested "inflatable expandable habitats" back in the early 1960's for use in space & on the Moon. Inflatable space habitat

**ETA regarding ISS Modules**
Maybe it was these Italians, Bedini and Partners that I was recalling.



edit on 1/16/2013 by JohnnyAnonymous because: (no reason given)


jra

posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 02:34 AM
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Originally posted by JohnnyAnonymous
I can concede to the idea of "inflatables" being currently Bigelow specific (as I can't recall anyone else trying), my query was in regards to other habitable "modules/containers".


Ah, my mistake. I thought you meant inflatable ones specifically.


At one time I read about several companies one in Japan and another (I believe Italian) that were attempting to build and compete for contracts.


Well to be fair, the Italian's did build the Harmony and Tranquility modules as well as the Cupola for the ISS already. The Italian's also made the three Multi-Purpose Logistics Module's for the Space Shuttle. Japan also currently has the largest individual module on the ISS.

I do believe that the Bigelow modules are much more affordable compared to any of the ISS modules. Which is definitely a huge plus.



posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 03:45 AM
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Thats great, however why the small size? The module is even smaller than conventional ones. And it only weights 1000 kg. Kinda underwhelming.



posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 04:56 AM
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Originally posted by Maslo
Thats great, however why the small size? The module is even smaller than conventional ones. And it only weights 1000 kg. Kinda underwhelming.


Small? It practically triples the circumference of a typical ISS module:



And the small weight can only be good; getting something into orbit costs its weight in gold.



posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 05:02 AM
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Although I don't take Jesse Ventura's Conspiracy Theory that seriously, he does occasionally come up with some real gems. He did a show on Bigelow and I found it rather fascinating - there is definitely more than meets the eye with that company and it's owner:




posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 07:26 AM
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reply to post by wildespace
 


That picture seems to be outdated, the real BEAM module is to be similar to those Bigelow Genesis modules currently in orbit. That is, a tiny 11 m3 volume and a mass of about 1 ton.

forum.nasaspaceflight.com...



posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 07:32 AM
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Are they going to use recycled tyres ?



posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 01:25 PM
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First CGI pictures of the new module are here:

imgur.com...



posted on Jan, 16 2013 @ 01:57 PM
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But I wonder who else made bids to provide NASA with such types of containers?


I can't find evidence of a recent RFP for expandable habitable containers, just news from last year regarding the proposal from Bigelow.

There is likely an ongoing, open RFP for "Cool Stuff for the ISS"



posted on Jan, 21 2013 @ 04:23 AM
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Something that I had missed till tonight as I was listening to George Knapp on C2C.

Bob Bigelow let slip that he's wanting to have a private space station in place by 2016.

I-Team: NASA to Spend $17 Million at North Las Vegas Business


Bigelow plans to build the solar system's first private space station and wants to have it in place 235 miles above the earth, within four years. It is an mind-numbing undertaking for one company.

Aerospace insiders told the I-Team that Bigelow has quietly undertaken a hiring frenzy, ramping up to build something that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago. Bigelow has said previously that he already has memos of understanding with several governments. If all goes as planned, those customers, along with corporations, will soon have a place to send their astronauts and scientists.





edit on 1/21/2013 by JohnnyAnonymous because: (no reason given)


jra

posted on Jan, 21 2013 @ 06:38 PM
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reply to post by JohnnyAnonymous
 


And here is a Wikipedia link on the various space station concepts Bigelow has put forth so far.

Bigelow Commercial Space Station



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 03:35 PM
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Coast To Coast AM - Mar 31 2013 - Exploring The Solar System George Knapp in the first half, President of Bigelow Aerospace, Bob Bigelow, broke the news about a new NASA contract involving his company that will pave the way for long term exploration of the solar system.
George Knapp in the second half, Dr. Roger Leir about the Turkey UFO

Read more: www.disclose.tv...





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