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Author Topic: Can the Shuttle reach the Moon?  (Read 32450 times)
Spaceguy5
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« on: April 13, 2011, 11:13:36 PM »

While I do understand they were built there, and *sometimes* land there, KSC, JSC, and NASM should have gotten the three flight Shuttles and sent Enterprise over to Dryden, to me that would have made the most sense.  I bet you could ask 65% of LA as to if they even know what a Space Shuttle is and their response would be something like "A what?  Shuttle?  Oh, yeah I heard about it on the news... Don't know anything about it though".

Oh well, now I'm ranting.  Sorry Admin.  Wink

Shuttle? Of course I know what those are! We go to the moon with them, right?
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spaceboy7441
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« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2011, 01:28:15 AM »

While I do understand they were built there, and *sometimes* land there, KSC, JSC, and NASM should have gotten the three flight Shuttles and sent Enterprise over to Dryden, to me that would have made the most sense.  I bet you could ask 65% of LA as to if they even know what a Space Shuttle is and their response would be something like "A what?  Shuttle?  Oh, yeah I heard about it on the news... Don't know anything about it though".

Oh well, now I'm ranting.  Sorry Admin.  Wink

Shuttle? Of course I know what those are! We go to the moon with them, right?
Sadly many many many MANY people believe that  Sad
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« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2011, 10:48:56 AM »

Theoretically this is possible, and we have a NASA doc to prove that.

Actually "vinny" here has been trying to TLO for some time... I wonder how his OMS fuel is doing Wink

/Admin
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simking
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« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2011, 10:43:15 PM »

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) is also demanding an investigation.  Ohio voted for Obama by the way.

Yes but during the last round of elections they elected all Republicans to congress and the senator makes no secret of his dislike for the obuma administration.
regardless it was flawed why have 2 shuttles about 3 hours apart?
jsc and pattAFB make sense just by location alone.
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« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2011, 11:25:37 PM »

"3 hours apart" being NASM and KSC?  That's a plane trip away, or about 8-10 hours of driving.  Very sensible to have Discovery and Atlantis where they are.

Wayne Hale wrote a nice blog on why Houston did not get a Shuttle... and I find he makes very valid points, especially after working in the area for so long.

http://waynehale.wordpress.com/2011/04/14/why-houston-did-not-get-a-shuttle/

Now, do I agree with him?  In a few ways, but I still think that JSC deserved more than two seats from a Shuttle.  From what I hear, though, JSC is "kid-oriented"... which is neat in some aspects, but for the hardcore Space enthusiast, you have to wade through that which can be annoying, and could have played a role in why they didn't get one, but we'll NEVER know that answer.  Politics?  Maybe, but again, we'll never know the truth.
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schmidtrock
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« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2011, 04:59:01 AM »

There is no reason, whatsoever in my mind that will ever, justify, JSC Not getting a shuttle. JSC has been the heartbeat of American Manned Space missions for decades. Surely and positively for the entire STS program life. This is just another fine example of greedy bureaucratic palm greasing. Plain and simple.
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schmidtrock
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« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2011, 05:01:39 AM »

I hope I can finish my college (late late life) credentialing in histrionics. to assist in the impaling that Obama will deserve. Trust me though, Reid, Pelosi and crew won't lack from annotation if I have anything to do with it.
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« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2011, 06:36:04 AM »

There is no reason, whatsoever in my mind that will ever, justify, JSC Not getting a shuttle. JSC has been the heartbeat of American Manned Space missions for decades. Surely and positively for the entire STS program life. This is just another fine example of greedy bureaucratic palm greasing. Plain and simple.

I was also shocked about JSC not getting a shuttle, however I learned a few details that were not evident at the beginning.

JSC didn't get a shuttle mainly because the JSC and the Texas politicians didn't FIGHT or it. They simply ASSUMED that they'd get a shuttle and did nothing beyond a writing a few letters.

While they were waiting, cozy in their misplaced, lazy arrogance, other, less "natural" contenders grabbed the shuttles from under their noses, after heavy lobbying at all levels, public and political pressure and lots and lots of NOISE.

So basically most of the blame lies with JSC and the Texas politicians, not with those who reached the decision on the final resting place of the shuttles.

Read this for more:

http://waynehale.wordpress.com/2011/04/14/why-houston-did-not-get-a-shuttle/

If you want to get something, you have to fight for it until victory is assured, not assumed.

You know the saying about the Fat Lady.


/Admin
« Last Edit: April 15, 2011, 06:42:58 AM by Admin » Logged

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Moonwalker
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« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2011, 08:48:33 PM »

Theoretically this is possible, and we have a NASA doc to prove that.

Would be very interesting to know in which way it would be possible theoretically.

The Kennedy Space Center FAQ answers to the question "Can the Space Shuttle fly to the Moon?" with: No, the Shuttle is designed to travel to low-Earth orbit (within a few hundred miles of the Earth's surface). It does not carry enough propellant to leave Earth orbit and travel to the Moon.
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« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2011, 05:25:53 AM »

Theoretically this is possible, and we have a NASA doc to prove that.

Would be very interesting to know in which way it would be possible theoretically.

The Kennedy Space Center FAQ answers to the question "Can the Space Shuttle fly to the Moon?" with: No, the Shuttle is designed to travel to low-Earth orbit (within a few hundred miles of the Earth's surface). It does not carry enough propellant to leave Earth orbit and travel to the Moon.

If you read my post carefully, you'd see the difference between "practically" and "theoretically". I also wondered what vinny's fuel gauge shows.

The answer NASA gave, was to "practically". The internal document we have details the maneuvers to bring the shuttle to the moon and back, provided that part of the PLB volume is replaced with fuel and life support, and a crew of two. THATs "theoretically".

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Moonwalker
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« Reply #10 on: April 17, 2011, 01:51:31 PM »

The internal document we have details the maneuvers to bring the shuttle to the moon and back, provided that part of the PLB volume is replaced with fuel and life support, and a crew of two. THATs "theoretically".

That's what I asked for ("Would be very interesting to know in which way it would be possible theoretically").

Theoretically, one can even make the Shuttle fly to Mars, or make it take off and land like an airplane as it was the case for Buran Grin



A lot of people think that the Shuttle practically flies to the Moon since they have seen Hollywood movies only without having a clue of real world manned space flight. I think that's what spaceboy7441 meant Smiley

PS: I think the OMS does not have enough delta v, or in other words the payload bay certainly does not fit enough fuel for bringing an 80 tons vehicle to the Moon and back. At least not with a direct insertion.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2011, 01:58:58 PM by Moonwalker » Logged
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« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2011, 02:13:40 PM »

OMS has enough power to adjust the orbit multiple times to go into a TLO. It does not need to aim for escape velocity. It's only a matter of fuel and life support.

And yes, the amount of misconceptions about the Shuttle, many of them comical, is not surprising considering how many times a Shuttle changes configuration during a mission.

But anyway, now it's a non-issue, since the STS program is winding down.

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Moonwalker
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« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2011, 03:44:29 PM »

OMS has enough power to adjust the orbit multiple times to go into a TLO. It does not need to aim for escape velocity. It's only a matter of fuel and life support.

But you won't "fly to the Moon" that way. You just raise the earth orbit or its apogee. The Shuttle will no way orbit the moon using the OMS engines only. It is not capable to perform a lunar orbit insertion and a trans earth injection back. Also, you would need to decelerate the Shuttle before entry because it is designed to enter the earths atmosphere with 7km/s and a maximum g-factor of 3.

What's that misterious document you are referring to? Smiley

It can't be NASAs Feasibility Analysis of Cislunar Flight Using the Space Shuttle from 1991 since it is based on using the SSME's.
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Pocci
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« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2011, 04:46:17 PM »

To end this discussion we would need:

The weight of the or-biter with e.g. a full tank in the payload bay.
(Or how many fuel the SRB's plus SSME with full external tank can lift into orbit.)
The orbital speed of the shuttle (8000 m/s)
The necessary speed for TLI.
The thrust of the OMS.
(Then we can calculate how long the OMS must fire.)
How much fuel per second the OMS burns.
(Then we can calculate weight and remaining fuel after TLI.)
The orbital speed of the lunar orbit.
(Then we can calculate weight and remaining fuel in lunar orbit.)
The necessary speed for TEI.
(Then we can calculate weight and remaining fuel after TEI.)
Finally we can calculate how much fuel it would take to reduce speed before reentry.

Should we have still fuel in the tanks after this calculation we can use this weight for a useful payload in lunar orbit.
Should this weight be only the mass of a camera to take pictures, the whole thing would be more theoretical than practical.  Wink

Should this weight be negative we could avoid lunar orbit and do an Apollo 13 style flight. This should need less fuel.

Should the weight of the remaining fuel after an Apollo 13 style flight be still negative we could take one of the "Shuttle" retiring places from the list (theoretical).  Wink
 
/Armin

I did not calculate this, but when I compare the weight of the empty or-biter with the weight of an Apollo capsule and the Saturn V liftoff weight I guess it is not possible.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2011, 04:48:50 PM by Pocci » Logged

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« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2011, 06:55:03 PM »

1. Who decided that if you don't reach the moon with a direct insertion trajectory, then the "flight" does not qualify? This sounds to me more like a remark for the sake of the argument, not really a constructive approach to the subject. Who claimed that the Shuttle can reach the moon via direct insertion? AFAIR, not me.

2. Who claimed that the mission has any other purpose but reaching the moon and returning safely? Not me! I didn't say "to land" or "to photograph" or "launch a scientific payload"? Not me!

3. Next you will claim that the Shuttle cannot land and take off the moon. In order to prevent that from hapening, I am reminding everybody that the scope of the discussion is Shuttle REACHING the moon and returning safely . No mention of landing, no mention of direct insertion, no mention of useful payload apart from a crew of two.

Instead of splitting hair about semantics, and juggling with convoluted logic, I invite both of you to firing your Mathlabs and starting playing with the numbers. At least you know that a solution exists, so it's not a waste of time.

Saying "it's impossible" or "I don't think it's possible", or "doesn't qualify because it's not a direct insertion flight" doesn't count as a scientific argument or adult attitude.

I have the luxury of not needing to play with the numbers because I have the paper which already gives me the proof. If you are inquisitive, curious or plain argumentative, go ahead - convince yourselves, not me.

Have fun with the numbers.

/Admin

I'm splitting this from the main thread now, since in the best "tradition" of some posters, the posts are not relevant to the thread subject anymore.
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