<! – To land astronauts on the moon before 2024 during the Artemis program, NASA must get a jump on the evolution of crew moon moons. -> Derek Richardson May 17, 2019 An illustration of a human landing system. NASA plans to contract commercial companies to develop landers for the Agency's Artemis program. Image Credit: NASA To land astronauts on the moon before 2024 during the Artemis program, NASA must gain hope for the development of crew-rated moon markers. According to a notice issued by the Space Agency, this would begin with initial studies through the Agency's Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships (NextSTEP) contract. "To accelerate our return to the moon, we challenge our traditional ways of doing business," Marshall Smith, head of human moon exploration at NASA's headquarters, said in a press release. "We will streamline everything from procurement to partnership to hardware development and even business. Our team is happy to come back to the moon as soon as possible, and our public / private partnerships to study human landing systems are an important step in that process. . " An illustration of a rising vehicle that begins its return journey to the Lunar Gateway. Image Credit: NASA A total of $ 45.5 million is being awarded to 11 companies, each year contributing at least 20 percent of the total projected cost, NASA says. The companies are expected to spend the next six months studying and developing prototypes. Right now, NASA sees a three-stage human landing system:…
May 17, 2019
To land astronauts on the moon before 2024 during the Artemis program, NASA must gain hope for the development of crew-rated moon markers.
According to a notice issued by the Space Agency, this would begin with initial studies through the Agency’s Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships (NextSTEP) contract.
“To accelerate our return to the moon, we challenge our traditional ways of doing business,” Marshall Smith, head of human moon exploration at NASA’s headquarters, said in a press release. “We will streamline everything from procurement to partnership to hardware development and even business. Our team is happy to come back to the moon as soon as possible, and our public / private partnerships to study human landing systems are an important step in that process. . “
A total of $ 45.5 million is being awarded to 11 companies, each year contributing at least 20 percent of the total projected cost, NASA says. The companies are expected to spend the next six months studying and developing prototypes.
Right now, NASA sees a three-stage human landing system: a transfer step to get the system from a very elliptical orbit (where a Lunar Gateway would be placed) around the moon, to a low-lunar pathway. The other two stages include a descent stage to land on the moon and a rising step to return to Gateway.
At least two of these parts, the transfer vehicle and the ascending vehicle are expected to be refilled and reused. Since such other objects being studied include refueling concepts.
According to the agency, the partnership is designed to reduce the cost of US taxpayers and encourage “early private investment in the moon economy”.
NASA provided the following list of awardees:
In an attempt to kick-start the development as soon as possible, NASA stated that it was “calling for undefined contract action”, which it would say would allow the agency to authorize its partners to start certain jobs while negotiating the contract price continues in parallel.
“We are taking big steps to begin development as soon as possible, including invoking a NextSTEP option that allows our partners to start working while we are still negotiating,” said Greg Chavers, male landing system formulation manager at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, in a NASA press release. “We are keen to gather early industry feedback on our human landing system requirements, and the undefined contract action helps us do that.”
NASA’s newly created Artemis (the goddess of the moon and sister of god Apollo in Greek mythology) program needs at least $ 1.6 billion in additional funding over the President’s original budget year 2020 budget request of 21 billions of dollars. Further increases would also be needed in 2021 and 2022. An exact number is not yet known.
The bulk of the FY 2020 increase is expected to go against the development of crew members, probably a result of this NextSTEP contract.
The current plan requires at least one multi-stage crew-marked lunar landing system to be in place at a scaled-down Lunar Gateway stationed in Moon Moon by 2024.
If a two-module gateway is included, at least five commercial launches are included to set the stage for the astronauts to return to the moon 2024.
Meanwhile, NASA and entrepreneurs Boeing and Lockheed Martin are working to complete the development of their space launch rocket and Orion spacecraft.
From now on, the first launch of the system, Artemis 1 (former exploration mission 1), is expected to start no earlier than the end of 2020 or the beginning of 2021. It would mean an unrestricted mission around the moon.
Artemis 2 is then expected to send a crew of four on a return trip around the moon in 2022.
Finally, Artemis 3 is expected to fly a four-person crew to dock with the Lunar Gateway, transfer to a lunar land and fly to the moon’s surface.
Upon completion of this mission, the crew is expected to use the ascending vehicle part of the landing system to return to Gateway before boarding the Orion for the journey home.
From there, NASA plans to continue lunar landings, making the Artemis program sustainable in 2028.
According to NASA, all this falls under President Trump’s space policy directive-1, requiring the agency to return astronauts to the moon surface with commercial and international partners and utilize the Moon’s resources to make it sustainable.
Video courtesy of NASA
The biggest obstacle is now, according to NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine, retirement of political risk. In order for the Agency to proceed with the Artemis program, it needs additional funding, which must be approved by Congress.
As of now, support for the accelerated program is mixed, especially because of the proposed funding source of another $ 1.6 billion in the revised budget request: a $ 9 billion surplus in the Federal Pell Grant program, which provides teaching support for low income students.
Several democratic representatives in this House have already opposed this source.
Representative Eddie Bernice Joh Nson, a Texas Democrat, said in a May 15 speech that she would reserve them on the overall program until a more concrete budget is given.
Johnson said she did not believe that NASA’s exploration program should be funded through the Pell Grant program as coming to the moon will “take more researchers and engineers, not fewer”.
In addition, on May 16, the House Appropriations Committee released an expense bill that would increase the NASA budget by $ 1.3 billion over the president’s original request. But much of it would go towards an increased science budget with the development of the Lunar Gateway, and lunar researchers surveyed with $ 618 million, essentially ignoring the President’s request.
There is still a long process before NASA gets a final budget for FY 2020, including passing through the entire House of Representatives and Senate before getting the President’s signature.
Video courtesy of NASA
Derek Richardson graduated in the mass media, with emphasis on modern journalism, from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas. During Washburn, he was managing editor of Student Run Newspaper, Washburn Review. He also has a blog about the International Space Station, called Orbital Velocity. He met members of the SpaceFlight Insider team during the flight of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 551 rocket with the MUOS-4 satellite. Richardson joined our team shortly thereafter.
His passion for space ignited when he saw the Space Shuttle Discovery launch in space on October 29, 1998. Today, this fervor has accelerated toward orbit and shows no signs of slowing down. After becoming mathematics and engineering courses in college, he soon showed that his true call communicated with others about space. Since joining SpaceFlight Insider in 2015, Richardson has been working to increase the quality of our content and eventually become our management editor. @TheSpaceWriter