Constellation Update

NASA Media Update About Constellation Program Progress

"NASA will host a media teleconference on Thursday, May 15, at 2 p.m. EDT, to provide an overview of progress made in the last few months and work ahead for NASA's Constellation Program. Constellation will build the spacecraft to carry astronauts to the International Space Station and return humans to the moon by 2020. Following the update, NASA managers will answer media questions."

The teleconference also will be audiocast live on NASA's Web site at:

Editor's note: When I asked Steve Cook if any of his employees were working on the "Direct" or "Jupiter" project he said that he was not aware of that anyone was. When asked if this would be allowed during or after hours, he said that it would not and that this would be "unapproved" work.

Alas, despite my pointed questions, and Steve Cook's very straightforward and unambiguous answers, the Direct Fan Boy community is now off posting their interpretations and parsing words they did not even hear and distilling alternate messages - messages that Cook clearly was not making.

Live Blog below

Jeff Hanley

Reaching end of first phase of "formulation". Figure out what you ant to buy and what schedule you want to buy it on - and the schedule needed. Working on Orion and Ares 1 in the context of the overall lunar mission. Pressing forward with architecture studies and soon, for requirements definition for Aries V and Altair. Review at end of June - refinement of ESAS study - lead into requirements review for Ares V and Altair.

Ares 1 March 2015 IOC first human launch. Still working to that committment - that is still in play. Our confidence has improved on this over the Spring.

KSC Getting ready for Ares 1-X. Flight hardware moving along nicely. Finishing mission level CDR in June that will finish all analytic integration. Greatest threat to 15 April 2009 Ares 1-X launch date is transfer of launch facilities from Pad 39B form shuttle prgram. Mobile Launcher Platform handover controlled by how soon Hubble mission is launched. Mobile Launcher construction contractor picked. We've done a design review of this system. Construciton for lightnign towers underway at 39B. Also make prgress for modifying VAB to accommodate Ares 1 stack. USA will be our processor for Ares 1 stack next year.

Hopes that people understand the complexity of developing spacecraft and launch vehicle at the same time.

Mark Geyer

As we came out fo the SDR in the Fall put a check point in our plan to look at data to see if we were on a good plan to meet PDR milestone. One date was 22 April. We stepped back and loked at work we'd done. We realized that there was some importantinput analysis that needed to be refined before we moved ahead. Loads analysis, power balance issues, etc. We added some time to do this right We need more time at the back end of the analysis cycle to integrate that work and put it into PDR process. PDR will now be in November. This gives time to do integration and analysis.

Another check point is in September. We need to look at that point to see if we can proceed into PDR in November.

Trying to get a vehicle to go to the Mooon - we do not want to leave capability behind. Also need enough margin at key milestones that I can react to that without doing a significant redeisgn.

We need to show at PDR that we have a lunar capable vehicle that closes on mass.

Will do a pad abort in December (Pad Abort 1) of launch escape system.

Steve Cook

Approaching PDR - in Spetmeber 2008 We completed chekc point reivew on 11 March. Our team agree don approach. We adjusted schedule by 2 weeks. We are about to enter into our stack review.

In the middle of our main reviews right now. Ares PDR kick off on 14 July, PDR baord on 10 Sep. One last readiness review on 25 June. Final check before we enter into the review process.

We are at 70% of wind tunnel testing complete - 5,000 hours on ascent and reentry.

On first stage - in middle of PDR right now. Board date is 5 June. On hardware side, we committed to develpment motor production for DM-1 and DM-2. Completed parachute tests. In July will do drouge parachute test out of a C-17.

First 5 segement cast of an inert segment to be used for ground vibration test.

Completed multiple pathfinder subsystem tests. First static motor test April 2009.

Upper stage heaaded for CDR.

Powerpack 1-A test completed at Stennis. 400 sec test. This is a heritage powerpack test back to original J-2 engines modified for X33 - re-modified it back to configuration we have today.

Looking ahead to do shuttle flight test on SRB for flight oscillation issue, measure loads that crew sees. Early design of 2 mass absorbers on first stage and upper stage.

Also have parallel work under way on Orion how they may further mitigate thrust oscillation.

Delays in Launching Hubble mission likely to have ripple effect on Ares 1-X launch due to handover of 39B to ESMD. Looking at a 5 week slip right now.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on May 15, 2008 2:42 PM.

Aerospace Industry Closes Ranks In Support of NASA Budget Increase was the previous entry in this blog.

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