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#1 2018-12-31 05:04:41

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

How would you conceptualise a post landing plan for Mars Mission One?

I think I'd be inclined to think in terms of:

1.  Cargo unloading

2.  Energy generation and storage/electrical maintenance.

3.  Transportation/human transfer (e.g. Starship to Rover to Hab)

4.  Hab construction

5. Life support, hygiene, cleaning, waste management, recycling and residential fittings (installation & maintenance).

6. Exploration/mining (including ice mining)

7. Science experimentation/industrial activity

8. Food storage/food production/food processing/cooking

9.  Propellant production.

10. Health monitoring, exercise regimes, surgery and medicines.

11. IT and coms.

12. Return rocket preparation.

Does this "cover all bases"?

You'd obviously have to then supplement with timelines, critical path analysis and so on as to timing of resource allocation, production, construction etc.
 
You'd also need an Implementation Plan detailing daily or regular management meetings (including whole crew meetings), labour allocation on projects/activities and likewise a breakdown of energy allocation over time.

You would obviously need a computer programme(s) for both Earth based ground control and the on-Mars crew which would monitor allocations and issue red alerts as necessary e.g. where propellant production was falling behind or water/energy storage levels were low.  For every critical scenario there would be a response procedure, as in aircraft emergencies.


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#2 2018-12-31 13:15:43

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

Assuming  that is all the bases covered, I think it's useful to order them according to the difficulty of ensure failsafe delivery by 2024.
Group A - Very difficult, a lot of development required.  Group B - Medium range difficulty - most technologies established.  Group C - Technologies well established.

Group A

1. Return rocket preparation.

2.  Cargo unloading

3.  Propellant production.

4. Exploration/mining (including ice mining or regolith water processing)

Group B

5.  Energy generation and storage/electrical maintenance.

6.  Transportation/human transfer (e.g. Starship to Rover to Hab)

7.  Hab construction

8.  Life support, hygiene, cleaning, waste management, recycling and residential fittings (installation & maintenance).

Group C

9. Science experimentation/industrial activity

10. Food storage/food production/food processing/cooking

11. Health monitoring, exercise regimes, surgery and medicines.

12. IT and coms.


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#3 2018-12-31 16:22:01

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

The first issue after landing is com/it as we need to communicate that we have landed and may need these for any manned unloading of cargo that can not be automated.

The Solar or nuclear power portion of the cargo each have there own set of problems for automate deployment and start up. Whic when we look at the unload if man musyt be used we can as communications and comms are already functional.

Before we re-enter we might deploycamera's, do inspections of the vehicle and of the general landed area it rests on. At that point the crew re-enters the vehicle and deactivates internal power being provided from the batteries and switches on the external power source.

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#4 2018-12-31 18:21:51

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

I would work on the assumption that the 6 landed Starships have effective coms connections with Earth Ground Control and also coms connections between them - so if their own system doesn't work they can still communicate via another Starship. Any offloaded rover should also have coms connections with Earth via the 6 Starships.

SpaceNut wrote:

The first issue after landing is com/it as we need to communicate that we have landed and may need these for any manned unloading of cargo that can not be automated.

The Solar or nuclear power portion of the cargo each have there own set of problems for automate deployment and start up. Whic when we look at the unload if man musyt be used we can as communications and comms are already functional.

Before we re-enter we might deploycamera's, do inspections of the vehicle and of the general landed area it rests on. At that point the crew re-enters the vehicle and deactivates internal power being provided from the batteries and switches on the external power source.


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#5 2018-12-31 18:48:57

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

The cargo ships will have a minimal communications system back to earth most likely none for ship to ship as its not really needed as that requires seperate reciever frquencies and tranmission channels to do as you would be walking ontop of the others that are signaling at the same time.

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#6 2018-12-31 19:26:18

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

I don't see why you wouldn't have ship to ship coms. In fact it is surely vital. Planes in bomber formations in WW2 had plane to plane coms. Of course they would have ship to ship coms.

SpaceNut wrote:

The cargo ships will have a minimal communications system back to earth most likely none for ship to ship as its not really needed as that requires seperate reciever frquencies and tranmission channels to do as you would be walking ontop of the others that are signaling at the same time.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#7 2018-12-31 19:35:50

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

Cargo ships are unmanned and no one is there to change the channel to key the transmission to occur...digital data streams for ship to ship is not required either and is lost on the way down to the surface anyways.

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#8 2018-12-31 19:57:06

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

I'm no coms expert but I will happily wager a large amount there must be automated systems that can communicate between locations with no human involvement.

I am in any case only talking about surface communication, not descent communication.


SpaceNut wrote:

Cargo ships are unmanned and no one is there to change the channel to key the transmission to occur...digital data streams for ship to ship is not required either and is lost on the way down to the surface anyways.


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#9 2018-12-31 20:16:41

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

If you only need a digital data path for a ship in a network data path its called a repeater or router for what you would need but that is assuming the uplink antenna for the ship got damaged on the way down and is not functioning to send the data when request back to home plate...

What data is required for cargo to send back a condition on?

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#10 2018-12-31 21:15:22

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

Sorry Spacenut - I don't see any major problems with coms between a Starship on Mars and Earth or one Starship with another on the Mars surface if they are all within a 25 sq km area.

We have so much experience of such communications I don't see how you are suggesting there is any difficulty in this area.

SpaceNut wrote:

If you only need a digital data path for a ship in a network data path its called a repeater or router for what you would need but that is assuming the uplink antenna for the ship got damaged on the way down and is not functioning to send the data when request back to home plate...

What data is required for cargo to send back a condition on?


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#11 2018-12-31 21:23:22

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

Still not answered;What do you need to communicated from a cargo ship with no men on board, as they are going into a sleep mode after landing until a crew arrives even heavily automated with power being deployed and fuel production started there is not that much data from any of the cargo ships and assumes uplinks have failed.

What could one cargo ship do for the other cargo ship even if you do have it communication happening?

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#12 2019-01-01 06:23:06

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

Coms can sleep safely and be woken up by Earth. 

Each Starship would be monitoring its own "health". 

If the designated return Starship has issues, then you might need to use another Starship, a designated reserve, to return.

You would potentially want to communicate with the Starships re things such as pressurisation of cargo holds, temperature control, unused fuel etc (why make propellant if you can pump it out of the Starship tanks?

In an emergency, if your own Starship's coms with Earth break down,  you might want to communicate with Earth via another Starship .


SpaceNut wrote:

Still not answered;What do you need to communicated from a cargo ship with no men on board, as they are going into a sleep mode after landing until a crew arrives even heavily automated with power being deployed and fuel production started there is not that much data from any of the cargo ships and assumes uplinks have failed.

What could one cargo ship do for the other cargo ship even if you do have it communication happening?


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#13 2019-01-01 12:14:42

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

So you are labeling any digital data transmission "coms" ( IT computer network)  to which ship to ship is a data relay ( repeater / router ) only with each ship needing to have there own health parametrics of information to relay back to earth via the satelite uplinks.

The term "coms" is generally a human communications analog signal like a walkie tackie and while it can ride on a digital transmission decoding to that format for later reconverting back to analog signal to be heard with a header encoding / decoding system.

Which sort brings us to the what if; for why ship to ship. In that each ship is a cargo duplicate for if they do not function, are damaged on landing or some other malfunction causes what was loaded to be unuseable. I know we do not want to have this condition but if its going to happen ever we will want to have planned for a decrease of stuff that we need for however many are sent in the crewed ship and if the cargo ship was viable is a surplus to make use of for exspansion...

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#14 2019-01-01 15:02:04

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

Comms (looks like I should have spelt it that way) is simply an abbreviation for communications. Could be communications by any means - radio, laser, signal whatever.  Comms can be between computers or between humans and computers or between humans and humans.

I would distinguish it from IT - which I would say is computer-based technology that allows us to do a whole range of things, including among them facilitating comms.

I am guessing that at least one of the "cargo" ships will be capable of returning the crew to Earth - maybe in less comfort than the main human passenger Starship.




SpaceNut wrote:

So you are labeling any digital data transmission "coms" ( IT computer network)  to which ship to ship is a data relay ( repeater / router ) only with each ship needing to have there own health parametrics of information to relay back to earth via the satelite uplinks.

The term "coms" is generally a human communications analog signal like a walkie tackie and while it can ride on a digital transmission decoding to that format for later reconverting back to analog signal to be heard with a header encoding / decoding system.

Which sort brings us to the what if; for why ship to ship. In that each ship is a cargo duplicate for if they do not function, are damaged on landing or some other malfunction causes what was loaded to be unuseable. I know we do not want to have this condition but if its going to happen ever we will want to have planned for a decrease of stuff that we need for however many are sent in the crewed ship and if the cargo ship was viable is a surplus to make use of for exspansion...


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#15 2019-01-01 15:21:09

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

Looking at a Dragon cargo capsule which has a pressurized section and an unpressurized we would hope that a cargo ship is not stripped out of those things that are life support within the pressurized area as it would not work for a return ship until the ship you came in innards systems for life were transferred into the pressurized cargo ship to make it function as a human habitat space.

Of course adding in the human coms interface of computers and displays would also be required to make it work.

Then again if a cargo ship is emptied and is left unused on the Mars surface we should plan to make it into both a return ship for humans plus cargo as part of leveraging recycling and commerce for mars.

I do hope that others will join in the discussions as the feeling that a fully automated unloading is not something that we can expect to have in the cargo ships that go. We can not think that fully functioning habbitats will just be produced or that telemining will be started until men are there to control them from the ship.

The human rovers I think should be planned in the crews ship as they would be readily made available on a bad landing for crews to get to there resources that they might need and to be able to help in hooking up a power grid for the ships to share.

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#16 2019-01-01 17:24:35

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

We do know that Space X are planning some sort of cargo hold at the base of the Starship...makes me wonder if they are planning some limited automated unloading at that level by robot vehicle e.g. to lay out transponders or laser devices, for landing purposes, or maybe to survey regolith for water. But I would agree with you - I can't see full unloading taking place without a human presence.

My proposal would be to have at least two pressurised rovers that can be used by the crew.

How would you do this with a crew of say six? If L Sol = Landing Sol then perhaps on  L+2 (after crew have rested and adapted to the 0.38 G), then I think we might have 2 people in each of two pressurised Base Area* rovers. These would be offloaded under supervision of the  two remaining Starship crew. The main hab would then be offloaded. This would be on a trailer that could be towed to a designated hab area.  Of course, it might be in sections, in which case there might be a number of journeys to and fro. Whatever hab is chosen, ideally assembly/inflation and basic installation of life support and other fittings should take no more than two sols.

The 4 crew members would live in the two pressurised rovers.  If necessary fresh supplies of air, water, food and battery power would be provided by the Starship. The two rovers would supervise hab construction in line with a previously agreed and v. detailed plan. Once the hab is up one of the rovers could enter the external air lock chamber, seal the chamber and then pressurise the hab (for a hab of 100 cubic metres that would require about 120 kgs of air. The two Rover personnel could then fit the basic life support equipment which would allow occupation of the hab.

I would envisage that by L+6 the hab would be fully fitted out in every respect.

* I envisage two smaller Base Area Rovers, maybe weighing around 2 tonnes each (fully loaded) that can be winched off  in one piece.  There would be a larger Exploration Rover that would form part of the cargo.  That might need some assembly.




SpaceNut wrote:

Looking at a Dragon cargo capsule which has a pressurized section and an unpressurized we would hope that a cargo ship is not stripped out of those things that are life support within the pressurized area as it would not work for a return ship until the ship you came in innards systems for life were transferred into the pressurized cargo ship to make it function as a human habitat space.

Of course adding in the human coms interface of computers and displays would also be required to make it work.

Then again if a cargo ship is emptied and is left unused on the Mars surface we should plan to make it into both a return ship for humans plus cargo as part of leveraging recycling and commerce for mars.

I do hope that others will join in the discussions as the feeling that a fully automated unloading is not something that we can expect to have in the cargo ships that go. We can not think that fully functioning habbitats will just be produced or that telemining will be started until men are there to control them from the ship.

The human rovers I think should be planned in the crews ship as they would be readily made available on a bad landing for crews to get to there resources that they might need and to be able to help in hooking up a power grid for the ships to share.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#17 2019-01-02 18:42:37

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,310

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

6. Exploration/mining (including ice mining)
7. Science experimentation/industrial activity

These are sort of done together as a function of gathering knowledge of the landing area to a higher boots on the ground level and in confirmatioon of supposed resource for mans use.

9.  Propellant production.
12. Return rocket preparation.

Some of this started when the cargo landers were sent ahead and landed safely in that it started to collect co2 for use. Plus continues as man is there.

4. Hab construction
5. Life support, hygiene, cleaning, waste management, recycling and residential fittings (installation & maintenance).
8. Food storage/food production/food processing/cooking
10. Health monitoring, exercise regimes, surgery and medicines.

Some of these are considered as a function of building a new structure and for everyday activity to ensure we stay healthy.

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#18 2019-01-02 19:25:14

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,969

Re: Conceptualising a post landing plan for Mars

I am sure you could tinker with the categories. Really this was more a prompt to thinking about the post-landing stage. If Space X are serious about their Mars Mission they will definitely need to undertake a similar (but no doubt far more rigorous) analysis.  They need to work out all their timelines and how they all interact, they need to identify all the critical paths and undertake network analysis of actions and resourcing.

I don't think we know yet whether Space X plan for Cargo Starships to harvets CO2 ahead of humans landing. I imagine harvesting CO2 on a CO2 planet is the least of our worries! smile

Everything is connected for sure (e.g. if you don't deal with waste, your life support will be compromised) but we do need to identify key strands of the surface mission. It's all about clear thinking and identifying exactly what needs to be done, how and when and in what sequence. Once you've done the conceptual analysis, you can do the micro-planning so you then end up with manuals or more likely now apps that take the personnel through every single step, issue alerts and so on.


SpaceNut wrote:

6. Exploration/mining (including ice mining)
7. Science experimentation/industrial activity

These are sort of done together as a function of gathering knowledge of the landing area to a higher boots on the ground level and in confirmatioon of supposed resource for mans use.

9.  Propellant production.
12. Return rocket preparation.

Some of this started when the cargo landers were sent ahead and landed safely in that it started to collect co2 for use. Plus continues as man is there.

4. Hab construction
5. Life support, hygiene, cleaning, waste management, recycling and residential fittings (installation & maintenance).
8. Food storage/food production/food processing/cooking
10. Health monitoring, exercise regimes, surgery and medicines.

Some of these are considered as a function of building a new structure and for everyday activity to ensure we stay healthy.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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