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Author Topic: Can the Shuttle reach the Moon?  (Read 32431 times)
Moonwalker
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« Reply #15 on: April 17, 2011, 07:47:28 PM »

I have the paper which already gives me the proof.

Which paper you are referring to?

If you are referring to the Feasibility Analysis of Cislunar Flight Using the Shuttle O rbiter from 1991:

it does not propose going to the moon by using the OMS. It is based on using the main engines and an external tank which would be fueled on orbit by Shuttle-C tankers at the space station Freedom.

http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19910014907_1991014907.pdf
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Pocci
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Posts: 616



« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2011, 08:35:13 PM »

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.
Sorry Admin, that I feel you are pointing at me here.
(At least you commented one other post of me today regarding relevancy.)
Sometimes threads evolve in being off subject.

In this case here spacewalker made a funny remark:
Shuttle? Of course I know what those are! We go to the moon with them, right?

And you (or someone using the Admin-account) answered with:
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
Which in my eyes started this interesting discussion which you moved correctly in this new thread.
So please don't blame others for your own posts.

/Armin
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« Reply #17 on: April 17, 2011, 08:50:26 PM »

No Pocci, not only to you but to Moonwalker and myself too... although my post wasn't intended to stir an argument Wink

/Admin
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« Reply #18 on: April 17, 2011, 09:32:55 PM »

I have the paper which already gives me the proof.

Which paper you are referring to?

If you are referring to the Feasibility Analysis of Cislunar Flight Using the Shuttle O rbiter from 1991:

it does not propose going to the moon by using the OMS. It is based on using the main engines and an external tank which would be fueled on orbit by Shuttle-C tankers at the space station Freedom.

http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19910014907_1991014907.pdf

Obviously not, since the paper I am talking about is NOT online, and since I mentioned that it uses the OMS.

It's not even the same author, and it's much more recent than '91.

/Admin
« Last Edit: April 17, 2011, 09:36:05 PM by Admin » Logged

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Pocci
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« Reply #19 on: April 17, 2011, 09:35:28 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.
Sorry, I was not speaking about direct insertion.
I did not disqualify any approach.
I used the Apollo approach because that is what I "know", at least is something which I can handle in my small brain.
In your first question you seem to prefer a direct insertion.
In your second question you seem not to prefer a direct insertion.
I am no rocket scientist, I can't say if a direct insertion is better then a parking orbit. But this is an interesting approach I did not thought of.

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!
Do you feel beeing attacked? This is not my intention.
I don't know what is in that paper because I don't have it, but I already wrote, that probably only reaching and returning would be possible:
Should this weight be negative we could avoid lunar orbit and do an Apollo 13 style flight. This should need less fuel.

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.
Hey, I didn't mention landing with a single word. We all know, that the or-biter can not land on the moon.

Instead of splitting hair about semantics, and juggling with convoluted logic.
Didn't you see the smiley's after my remarks of theoretical and practical.

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.
Come on, why do you heat up the discussion telling us not having adult attitude?
Every scientific question starts with an hypothesis which you discuss with an experiment, a study or some calculations.
My hypothesis is: "To reach the moon and return safely it would need more fuel than you can lift with a shuttle in the payload bay."
My "calculations" I already posted, I am just missing some information (e.g. speeds and OMS performance).
Speaking of OMS performance, I am sure they are better than the SSME because they are designed for space and the SSME are designed for the upper atmosphere.
(Is that correct?)
Anyhow, I would use the engine which gives me more delta-V out of a kilogram of fuel.

I have the luxury of not needing to play with the numbers because I have the paper which already gives me the proof.

OK, I don't want to stir an argument as well, so I deleted my comment here Wink

If you are inquisitive, curious or plain argumentative, go ahead - convince yourselves, not me.
Have fun with the numbers.
If someone can point me to the numbers I asked for I probably start my "Mathlab", but to be honest, the whole thing is l'art pour l'art.

One direct question, Admin. You mentioned Vinny's experiment with SSM. Do you think it is the right model to experiment with? Are the orbital mechanics outside the Hubble orbit simulated realistically?
I don't want to offend you or SSM here. I know that SSM's purpose is to show as realistically as possible with a 50$ simulator the missions of the Space Shuttle.
The question is, how far does it make sense to experiment with SSM or should we better stay in the mathlab here for this question?

/Armin

PS: Is the mentioned paper public? Can you give us a link?
Is it possible that we can read the mentioned paper as well?
I seems to be a really interesting paper and when it can save me from calculating I would prefer reading. Smiley
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« Reply #20 on: April 18, 2011, 12:01:18 PM »

Pocci, I already mentioned in the past that the paper is an internal NASA paper and treated as confidential. I already talked about it on other threads in the past, I think when vinny was shooting for extreme apogee, but for some reason it didn't get the "attention" it got now. By the way, I don't thinkk I have to prove anything to anybody. If you don't believe it, just do the calculations and prove the paper wrong. Show numbers, not words.

And of course not all the remarks were directed at you, so no need to feel "attacked" on subjects which you obviously did not raise Smiley

I am not going to add fuel and answer, or argue with you or anybody on this issue which has taken too much of my time already.

Incidentally, in case anybody wonders, Moonwalker's post was removed after effectively caling the Admin a liar. Sorry, this is not allowed without proof and it applies to anybody, not only to the active Admin.

/Admin
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Moonwalker
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« Reply #21 on: April 18, 2011, 12:26:47 PM »

Why is a paper, that proofs that the Space Shuttle can fly to the Moon and back, confidential? Or, why is the Feasibility Analysis of Cislunar Flight Using the Shuttle O rbiter not confidential, and the paper which you claim you have confidential?
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Admin
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« Reply #22 on: April 18, 2011, 12:33:02 PM »

Why is a paper, that proofs that the Space Shuttle can fly to the Moon and back, confidential? Or, why is the Feasibility Analysis of Cislunar Flight Using the Shuttle O rbiter not confidential, and the paper which you claim you have confidential?

Because the owner has asked it to be confidential, and he/she has a good reason for that. Can you understand that some people can respect and honor that agreement? This is not open for negotiation with you or anybody, unless he/she releases us of the NDA.

Our complete trust and relationship with our friends at NASA are more important than your evident curiosity and burning desire to argue.

/Admin
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Moonwalker
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« Reply #23 on: April 18, 2011, 12:37:40 PM »

I have the desire to know how the Shuttle can fly to the Moon and back using the OMS Wink
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Spaceguy5
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« Reply #24 on: April 19, 2011, 01:07:56 AM »

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".

/Admin

Filling the payload bay with extra propellant was the only way I could imagine it. I remember there was a mod for Shuttle that did something similar. As long as the shuttle could have the extra propellant, I don't see why a shuttle couldn't go to the moon. But of course, the crew would have to worry about radiation and life support. Perhaps extra fuel or life support could be launched seperately
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Moonwalker
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« Reply #25 on: April 19, 2011, 10:25:29 AM »

As long as the shuttle could have the extra propellant, I don't see why a shuttle couldn't go to the moon.

It depends on what one means by "go to the Moon". A Space Shuttle would never orbit the Moon solely by using its OMS since it has not enough delta v to perform a lunar orbit insertion.
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Pocci
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« Reply #26 on: April 19, 2011, 11:35:38 AM »

I remember there was a mod for Shuttle that did something similar.
As far as I know are we here not allowed to discuss that other software.
The name is not to speak or write. If you do it, the word "Voldemort" will be exchanged automagically with the word "Shuttle" by the forum software.
Did I say "Voldemort"? Oops. Wink

As long as the shuttle could have the extra propellant, I don't see why a shuttle couldn't go to the moon.
Would I start hair splitting (what I never do Wink) I would point to the definition of "Shuttle" by NASA itself NASA - What is the Space Shuttle? and say as long as SRB and external tank are dropped into the ocean, a shuttle will never reach the moon.
But OK, "Shuttle" is used for OV widely and the current subject of this thread sounds better than: "Can the OV reach the Moon?"

But of course, the crew would have to worry about radiation and life support.
Maybe not. Biggest problem would be the Van Allen belt and that would be probably crossed as fast as by Apollo.

Perhaps extra fuel or life support could be launched seperately
Hmm, this probably leaves the plan of the secret document.
This would be the begin of planning a real mission to the moon and for that, I think, we are all together seeing that it does not make sense to send such a big mass to the moon.

/Armin
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Pocci
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Posts: 616



« Reply #27 on: April 19, 2011, 11:48:13 AM »

It depends on what one means by "go to the Moon". A Space Shuttle would never orbit the Moon solely by using its OMS since it has not enough delta v to perform a lunar orbit insertion.
I think the problem is not the OMS. If the necessary amount of fuel in the payload bay could be lifted by the shuttle, I am sure the OMS can do it.
Maybe it would take too much time, or the speed through the Van Allen belt would be too slow, but I am sure the OMS can push the or-biter to the Moon.
Look at SMART-1. The mass of 367 kg was pushed by a thrust of 68 mN (that could only lift a sheet of paper on earth) to the moon. OK, it needed 5000 h, more than 200 days, but it worked.
I do not know the numbers, but I think the thrust/weight ratio of the OMS pushing the OV is better than the SMART-1 engine.

/Armin
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Moonwalker
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Posts: 936


« Reply #28 on: April 19, 2011, 12:27:30 PM »

It depends on what one means by "go to the Moon". A Space Shuttle would never orbit the Moon solely by using its OMS since it has not enough delta v to perform a lunar orbit insertion.
I think the problem is not the OMS. If the necessary amount of fuel in the payload bay could be lifted by the shuttle, I am sure the OMS can do it.
Maybe it would take too much time, or the speed through the Van Allen belt would be too slow, but I am sure the OMS can push the or-biter to the Moon.
Look at SMART-1. The mass of 367 kg was pushed by a thrust of 68 mN (that could only lift a sheet of paper on earth) to the moon. OK, it needed 5000 h, more than 200 days, but it worked.
I do not know the numbers, but I think the thrust/weight ratio of the OMS pushing the OV is better than the SMART-1 engine.

/Armin

Interesting point.

But SMART-1 was very light and the specific impulse of its engine was more than three times the maximum for chemical engines. 5000 hours was the burn time, but it took thirteen months before it entered lunar orbit!

I don't have numbers yet. But remember that the payload bay is used for OMS fuel and life support. The specific impulse of the OMS is lower than for the SMART-1 engine in relation I think. How long would it take to get the Shuttle to the Moon the same way? Does the payload bay hold enough OMS fuel for doing so, and more important, does it also hold enough life support for a trip that lasts for years? Remember: after more than one year you only reached the Moon. But you have to return safely, as the claim states Wink The mission probably would last for years... Grin
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Admin
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« Reply #29 on: April 19, 2011, 12:33:15 PM »

It's a matter of pushing the apogee at the right time(s) on shuttle's orbit, and relative to the moon's orbit, so that the two intercept, taking into account moon's increased grav influence. And yes, it's "only" a matter of time and fuel. It's also correct that if a crew is involved, radiation is a factor that needs to be addressed.

That's why life support and fuel are an issue.

[edit] it doesn't last "for years". Much more than 3-4 days, and more than a "standard" STS mission, but definitely not years. Numbers don't lie.

/Admin
« Last Edit: April 19, 2011, 12:35:54 PM by Admin » Logged

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