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modrosso OP t1_ix5acfs wrote

After a hiatus it seems like NASA is back in the Earth-Moon exploration/development business.


BigManScaramouche t1_ix5adii wrote

It's awesome it exceeds expectations... but the comms black out?

I thought they would have enough of satellites there by now, so they could maintain connection with the craft during entirety of the mission.

If there's something that KSP taught me, it's that there's no such thing, as too many relay satellites, during remote mission. Especially when I want to set up a permanent space station above the mun, not to mention testing the brand new launch system that's supposed to get me there.


topcat5 t1_ix5ci2l wrote

Why would they fund, build and maintain a communication system which would allow real time communication with the dark side of the moon? At this point?

Doing such a thing would take a good deal of funding from something else.


farmersboy70 t1_ix5jy86 wrote

The lack of live footage on launch was disappointing, as was the CGI.


Mystic_L t1_ix5k523 wrote

“Exceeding expectations” concerns me when it comes from an engineer; they’ve spent a bizillion man hours working out every detail, checking and rechecking.

It shouldn’t be exceeding expectations if it was going well, it should be going exactly as expected.


Mystic_L t1_ix5l0ou wrote

I’ll give you those, but they exceeded longevity of mission expectations, that’s slightly different than a rocket on its way to a moving target.


mtbdork t1_ix5nsc9 wrote

Ever since the first rovers sent to Mars “disappointed” government officials by not accomplishing their goal of finding life.

Nowadays, NASA has to be much more lamesauce conservative about their goals in order to secure and maintain funding by making politicians happy.

Every estimate was probably made as pessimistically as possible so that anything that was better than “exactly according to these pessimistic plans” was a positive surprise, incentivizing politicians to give them further funding to do what they really want, which is really cool stuff. The quiet part they can’t say out loud…


usrdef t1_ix5oyvo wrote

It's cool that everything is working, but someone who does space stuff posted a youtube video explaining the difference between Apollo and Orion, including the reason why Apollo could take a direct route, and Orion orbits the lagrange points.

Once you get into the details of it, Orion is cool, but sort of underwhelming considering what Apollo could do at the time it was developed with the technology it had.

Plus, if I were the crew going on 3; I'd be slightly concerned by the fact that with Orion, if anything happens; they've got a week before they could get off the Moon and get going back home.


toodroot t1_ix5syho wrote

Yep, and the CLPS program is going to land maybe 10 uncrewed landers before the astronauts step out. Nice to see more effort on science than Apollo's footprints focus.


ellWatully t1_ix5tdlw wrote

Error bars go in both directions so better than expected performance is not unusual at all. "Better than expected" doesn't mean it's doing something it shouldn't have been able to do. It just means that variability stacked up in a favorable way. You model this stuff to account for uncertainty in all your components so the expected performance already assumes it's not going to be perfect. Frankly, in a complex system like this, it's difficult to even quantify what "perfect" even is because there are infinite dispersions and it's not always obvious what combination of variables is best.


Cartz1337 t1_ix5wz7v wrote

Not really… almost every Apollo mission had significant problems of one type or another. Apollo 13 is obviously the most memorable one due to it actually exploding. Here are some details on the rest.

Apollo 1, killed its crew in a fire on the launchpad during preflight testing.

Apollo 6 - unmanned, significant POGO, multiple engine failures in 2nd stage. 3rd stage failed to reignite.

Apollo 8 - Frank Borman was puking most of the way to the moon. The spacecraft itself was the ‘best ever made’ with only 8 minor issues.

Apollo 9 - one member crew was space sick, impacting flight plan

Apollo 11 - nearly missed landing site due to improper tunnel venting, incorrect rendezvous radar setting overloaded computer during landing causing a string of alarms that could have caused an abort.

Apollo 12 - struck by lightning during launch. They weren’t sure if the strike blew the parachute pyros so they didn’t know for the entire flight if they were in a flying coffin. Also they pointed their TV camera at the sun and fried it.

Apollo 13 - boom, failure is not an option etc

Apollo 14 - abort switch contaminated with metal shavings, causing the button to appear pressed intermittently. They had to patch the computer manually to disable the switch. Landing radar failed to lock and had to be rebooted during the landing.

Apollo 15 - crew was so exhausted after returning from the lunar lander that they suffered long term damage to their cardiovascular systems. Mostly due to deficiency of potassium.

Apollo 16 - CSM thrust vectoring failed causing a prolonged delay in the landing while they worked around the issue. Astronaut tripped over the heat transfer experiment on the surface and destroyed it.

And this is just from memory. I don’t think it’s unreasonable for a mission to exceed expectations. There is an expectation of some difficulties, if some things not working as planned. To have only minor issues, issues you anticipated and planned contingencies for or no issues at all would most certainly exceed expectations.


personizzle t1_ix5z31n wrote

"Exceeding expectations" in this case means things like "We expected this part to have maybe 5% variance from nominal, and designed to cover worst-case scenarios within that range, but it was more like 2% from nominal because a bunch of stuff worked extremely well." Not "it went way faster than we expected and we don't know why, might overshoot moon idk."


toodroot t1_ix6q2a9 wrote

NASA appears to use standards like "99% likely to achieve its primary science mission". There's no surprise when that means that the thing typically has a lifetime much longer than the primary science mission.


sassynapoleon t1_ix6u2qi wrote

It's not Orion vs Apollo, it's SLS block 1 vs Saturn.

See SLS variants here.

The additional delta V necessary for a more direct trajectory was supplied by the S-IVB 3rd stage on a Saturn V, and a similar "exploration upper stage" is planned for the SLS 1B crew variant so that it can have a similar trajectory.

This wasn't a requirement for Artemis 1 since it was unmanned, and the spacecraft has solar panels allowing for a a longer path that lets NASA log more data before sending it back up with crew on board.


Decronym t1_ix6u87g wrote

Acronyms, initialisms, abbreviations, contractions, and other phrases which expand to something larger, that I've seen in this thread:

|Fewer Letters|More Letters| |-------|---------|---| |CLPS|Commercial Lunar Payload Services| |ESA|European Space Agency| |JPL|Jet Propulsion Lab, California| |KSC|Kennedy Space Center, Florida| |KSP|Kerbal Space Program, the rocketry simulator| |SLS|Space Launch System heavy-lift|

^(6 acronyms in this thread; )^(the most compressed thread commented on today)^( has 23 acronyms.)
^([Thread #8317 for this sub, first seen 21st Nov 2022, 04:37]) ^[FAQ] ^([Full list]) ^[Contact] ^([Source code])


Xaxxon t1_ix6zqov wrote

They were supposed to launch in 2016 so they've exceeded that by a LOT.


Xaxxon t1_ix6zsdz wrote

SLS cannot support anything more than footprints. As long as it's a part of the moon missions it will just be infrequent visits.

edit: it simply cannot launch often enough.


Huxley077 t1_ix72xjm wrote

I get your point, even if it's a comparison to a videogame ( fellow KSP lover here ) but there aren't people on the surface or ever nearby yet to really communicate with. I would hope that this issue is solved before crewed missions take off, it does seem like oversight unless they have a different communication system planned


toodroot t1_ix7ebt4 wrote

The Gateway station is supposed to provide such communications, but it's not necessarily available before Artemis 3.

People downvoted me for mentioning the small and inexpensive Chinese relay satellite, so I guess that's not a good solution.


newonreddit7420 t1_ix7m3uk wrote

Is the lander ready as they're looking to land on moon as early as 2025?


Pharisaeus t1_ix7mk9r wrote

The issue is SpaceX is a private company and they can do whatever they want. NASA is publicly funded and they have to give a very strict summary of expenses and "making cool videos" is not part of their mandate, so they simply can't spend money on it.


Pharisaeus t1_ix7mq5g wrote

Compared to other agencies like ESA I would argue that NASA is doing a great job at self-promotion. Lots of Europeans don't even know ESA exists, and 99% won't be able to tell you where any of the sites are located, while most people somehow know about NASA's KSC and JPL.

In terms of scientific organizations I'm not sure if there is one that rivals NASA in terms of recognizability, perhaps CERN, but that's about it.


HiHungry_Im-Dad t1_ix7mxb2 wrote

NASA is generally seen in a good light, but there’s many corners of the internet that think we should get rid of it and let private companies take over. You’d also be surprised how many people say “NASA? Are they still around?” A surprising number of Americans don’t know that NASA is still doing things.


_Schwartz_ t1_ix9puy5 wrote

Completely different tech, the people who did it before are dead or not long for it. They probably hard a great framework but had to do a lot of first principles thinking for this new iteration. Also before saying you're wondering why something is hard to do you should ask yourself if you could do it. Helps when taking things for granted.


jadebenn t1_ixaxenm wrote

In this case, (with the recent info from the press conference), SLS performed within 0.3% of projections, and neither it or Orion have had any major issues (fingers crossed!). For the first launch of a fully-integrated launch vehicle and payload, that's super impressive!