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#1 2014-01-19 13:58:47

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 15,828

COTS Lunar lander Inititative

NASA announces Commercial Lunar lander inititative

In an effort to further NASA’s increasing involvement with commercial companies, the space agency has announced that it is researching opportunities to have commercial companies develop spacecraft capable of landing on the Moon.
NASA is looking for proposals from possible commercial partners which, according to a NASA-issued press release, it hopes will lead to, “reliable and cost-effective commercial robotic lunar lander capabilities that will enable the delivery of payloads to the lunar surface.”

On Monday, Jan. 27, NASA will host a teleconference where those interested in submitting proposals will have the opportunity to query NASA about what this new announcements entails. After that, interested firms will have until Mar. 17 to submit their proposals. If everything proceeds apace, selections will be made in April and Space Act Agreements (SAAs) announced the month after that.

NASA views the benefits as two-fold. First there is the commercial benefit of lunar exploration and exploitation. The Moon is awash in resources such as titanium, water and various other minerals and metals as well as what some view as an important fuel source the rare (on Earth) isotope helium 3 (China has made statements which suggest its interest in the Moon is less about prestige and more about the resources contained there). Secondly is the scientific missions of exploration that the space agency would like to accomplish on the Moon.

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#2 2014-01-19 17:59:29

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 4,711

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

NASA is a sad parody of its former self.

Obviously just a reaction to the Chinese runaround robot.


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

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#3 2014-01-19 20:39:12

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 15,828

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

Was it an xprize or google I dont remember but Morpheus was the only one to take off and land on another pad.

Under Lunar CATALYST these firms are required to land payloads ranging from 66 – 220 lbs (30 to 100 kilograms) and 551 to 1,102 lbs (250 to 500 kilograms) to a variety of lunar destinations.

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#4 2014-01-22 09:05:54

RGClark
Member
From: Philadelphia, PA
Registered: 2006-07-05
Posts: 501
Website

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

SpaceNut wrote:

NASA announces Commercial Lunar lander inititative

In an effort to further NASA’s increasing involvement with commercial companies, the space agency has announced that it is researching opportunities to have commercial companies develop spacecraft capable of landing on the Moon.
NASA is looking for proposals from possible commercial partners which, according to a NASA-issued press release, it hopes will lead to, “reliable and cost-effective commercial robotic lunar lander capabilities that will enable the delivery of payloads to the lunar surface.”
On Monday, Jan. 27, NASA will host a teleconference where those interested in submitting proposals will have the opportunity to query NASA about what this new announcements entails. After that, interested firms will have until Mar. 17 to submit their proposals. If everything proceeds apace, selections will be made in April and Space Act Agreements (SAAs) announced the month after that.

Lunar CATALYST is a good step. However, it is interesting to note they are limiting it to small cargo landers. Why? Perhaps because of the realization that a large lander could also be used for manned missions. The primary impetus for this program was Bigelow’s drive for private manned bases on the Moon, so it is odd that man-capable landers are excluded.

NASA’s commercial space program for LEO flight has shown an order of magnitude reduction in development costs by following the commercial space approach. The obvious thing to try is to extend this to BEO missions as well.

In fact it might even be two orders of magnitude cheaper for such a commercial space lunar lander. NASA has stated we can’t return to the Moon because, by their estimates, a lunar lander would cost $10 billion. However, Dave Masten of Masten Space Systems is working on a Centaur-derived lander he calls Xeus that he estimates can be developed for only $50 million. At the very least NASA should be supporting such efforts by SAA agreements, if not in fact partially-funding them by using the cost-sharing partnerships proven so successful with their commercial space program.

Bob Clark

Last edited by RGClark (2014-01-22 09:08:15)


Nanotechnology now can produce the space elevator and private orbital launchers. It now also makes possible the long desired 'flying cars'. This crowdfunding campaign is to prove it:
Nanotech: from air to space.
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/nano … 13319568#/

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#5 2014-01-22 19:46:00

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 15,828

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

The company has been rather quite...

http://www.nasa.gov/directorates/spacet … asten.html

Masten's Kyle Nyberg observes the Xombie vehicle on the pad prior to flight test operations. Xombie won the Level One, second place prize of $150,000 in the 2009 Lunar Lander Challenge.

http://nineplanets.org/news/masten-xombie-technology/

Masten Space Systems tested a new “Xombie technology” experimental vertical-takeoff and landing rocket along collaboratively with the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center to test a new algorithm for “pinpoint” landing of spacecraft on other planets. Masten was involved with the sky crane landing of Curiosity on Mars and judging from that the term “pinpoint” isn’t just hyperbole.

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#6 2014-01-22 21:23:18

RGClark
Member
From: Philadelphia, PA
Registered: 2006-07-05
Posts: 501
Website

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

What they have been doing lately including discussion of the Xeus lunar lander here:

Profile | Joel Scotkin, Chief Executive, Masten Space Systems.
By Dan Leone | Jan. 7, 2013
http://www.spacenews.com/article/profil … ce-systems

  Bob Clark


Nanotechnology now can produce the space elevator and private orbital launchers. It now also makes possible the long desired 'flying cars'. This crowdfunding campaign is to prove it:
Nanotech: from air to space.
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/nano … 13319568#/

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#7 2016-12-01 21:12:37

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 15,828

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

Wow what ever happened to this program?

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#8 2017-03-14 08:19:24

RGClark
Member
From: Philadelphia, PA
Registered: 2006-07-05
Posts: 501
Website

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

SpaceNut wrote:

Wow what ever happened to this program?

With the current administration wanting to return to the Moon perhaps the Xeus lander will get funding. More about the Xeus lander:

Xeus.
Under Development in Partnership with ULA.
http://masten.aero/vehicles-2/xeus/

I actually favor multiple commercial approaches to our returning to the Moon, such as the lunar cargo lander being planned by Blue Origin:

Jeff Bezos and Blue Origin propose ‘Amazon-like’ delivery to the moon in 2020.
BY ALAN BOYLE on March 2, 2017 at 7:32 pm
http://www.geekwire.com/2017/blue-moon- … ding-2020/

  The planned lander is to carry a 10,000 pound payload to the lunar surface. This is about the size of the gross mass of the ascent stage of the Apollo lunar  lander.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_Lu … cent_stage

Actually a lighter ascent stage could be formed using the, already built and tested, methane Morpheus lander:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Mo … ifications

Then the Blue Origin cargo lunar lander planned for 2020 could serve as the descent stage of a manned lander in 2020 also.

  Bob Clark


Nanotechnology now can produce the space elevator and private orbital launchers. It now also makes possible the long desired 'flying cars'. This crowdfunding campaign is to prove it:
Nanotech: from air to space.
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/nano … 13319568#/

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#9 2019-08-18 21:17:45

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 15,828

Re: COTS Lunar lander Inititative

seems Nasa is ready to work on the key element needed for a moon landing.

NASA picks Alabama's 'Rocket City' for lunar lander job

Marshall Space Flight Center beat out Houston's Johnson Space Center and three Republican members of Congress from Texas are not happy about NASA's pick (Sens. Ted Cruz and John Cornyn, and Rep. Brian Babin — had asked that the decision be reconsidered. ).

The new lunar lander — not yet built or even designed — is meant to carry an American woman and a man to the moon's south pole by 2024. Under the plan, the astronauts will depart for the surface from a small space station around the moon and return there.

When asked why he chose Marshall, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine explained to reporters that propulsion is a critical element of lunar landers.

"I would argue that when it comes to propulsion, there is no place in the world that is more experienced and better than the Marshall Space Flight Center," he said.

"it is absolutely true that when you think about the module where our astronauts will be, that cannot be done without the Johnson Space Center."

More than a third of the 360 jobs — 140 — will be at Marshall. Eighty-seven will be at Johnson and the rest elsewhere.

Not going to be off the shelf....

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