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ZaphodHarkonnen
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Sat Mar 07, 2020 3:49 am

Oof. What, a, clusterf**k. (Mods don't like even that swearing. :P )

And to remember that Boeing was supposed to be the reliable pair of hands compared to the brash risky young kids at SpaceX.

On the upside for ULA, they might get another Atlas V launch out of this mess.
 
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Francoflier
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Sat Mar 07, 2020 3:57 am

Tugger wrote:

Also Boeing has set aside/took a charge of $410M to cover a potential second full-up test launch if required.

Tugg


If I was an astronaut slated to fly this thing, I certainly would want them to... I hope NASA makes them do another test, though I suspect Boeing's lobbyist are working against that already in DC.
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DarkKnight5
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Sat Mar 07, 2020 5:58 am

Francoflier wrote:
Tugger wrote:

Also Boeing has set aside/took a charge of $410M to cover a potential second full-up test launch if required.

Tugg


If I was an astronaut slated to fly this thing, I certainly would want them to... I hope NASA makes them do another test, though I suspect Boeing's lobbyist are working against that already in DC.


Since they’ve already charged the money I assume an OFT repeat is a foregone conclusion, which makes me think NASA has made it clear to Boeing OFT2 is happening. Now I agree the lobbyists are hard at work which is why NASA has been so kid-gloved since the first breath of an error, but they’re going to fly another OFT unmanned.
 
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AirlineCritic
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Sat Mar 07, 2020 7:11 pm

No full, entire-mission test performed? That is shocking if true. And very unprofessional.
 
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hilram
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Mar 12, 2020 6:47 am

Tugger wrote:
Apparently NASA has 61 items for Boeing to address:
https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/06/nasa-fi ... craft.html

Also Boeing has set aside/took a charge of $410M to cover a potential second full-up test launch if required.

Tugg

How the mighty have fallen!

What happended to Test Methodology at Boeing?
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Tugger
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Fri Mar 27, 2020 4:01 pm

Well, some goods news: The AEHF 6 satellite launch yesterday was successful and the US Space Force has opened for business! :spin:
https://videos.space.com/m/1my8wsAQ/bla ... t=9wzCTV4g

Nice launch.

Tugg
I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. - W. Shatner
There are many kinds of sentences that we think state facts about the world but that are really just expressions of our attitudes. - F. Ramsey
 
zanl188
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Mon Apr 06, 2020 11:31 pm

Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
 
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Francoflier
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Tue Apr 07, 2020 10:15 am

zanl188 wrote:


'Opts'...

:wink2:
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DarkKnight5
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:37 am

Francoflier wrote:
zanl188 wrote:


'Opts'...

:wink2:

We’ve “opted” to “meet our contractual obligations” and avoid a “devastating” “contractor performance review”.
Image

Also we need a “bailout.”
Image
 
DarkKnight5
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Sun May 17, 2020 8:02 pm

Atlas V launched US Air or Space Force’s X-37B spaceplane. Can’t confirm the prograM has been transferred to the Space Force officially or not. Media outlets divided in that point.

Errrrrday’s coverage here:
http://youtu.be/NIfyAd06lII

It is amazing how slowly it left the pad. It had to have been at 1.1x thrust to weight at liftoff. It looked so slow I was worried the engine wasn’t providing full power. It was also one of the most vertical launches I’ve seen lately, very little pitch over, it’s especially apparent on views from the rocket. Obviously they didn’t need it, but it seems like an SRM would have helped their performance margin. Maybe the X-37B has so much Delta-V that it doesn’t need any help beyond getting to LEO.
 
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Francoflier
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Mon May 18, 2020 3:46 am

DarkKnight5 wrote:
Atlas V launched US Air or Space Force’s X-37B spaceplane. Can’t confirm the prograM has been transferred to the Space Force officially or not. Media outlets divided in that point.

Errrrrday’s coverage here:
http://youtu.be/NIfyAd06lII

It is amazing how slowly it left the pad. It had to have been at 1.1x thrust to weight at liftoff. It looked so slow I was worried the engine wasn’t providing full power. It was also one of the most vertical launches I’ve seen lately, very little pitch over, it’s especially apparent on views from the rocket. Obviously they didn’t need it, but it seems like an SRM would have helped their performance margin. Maybe the X-37B has so much Delta-V that it doesn’t need any help beyond getting to LEO.


ULA is really good at those uncommon / specialized launches with unusual orbits and payloads. I think this is an area where SpaceX can't really compete with them (yet).

I still find it funny that a US Space Force mission is being put into orbit by a Soviet-era engine, even though its days are counted.
I'll do my own airline. With Blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the airline.
 
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Nomadd
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Mon May 18, 2020 5:38 am

I have to wonder if Tim Dodd is human. I've seen him talk for two hours without taking a breath.
 
DarkKnight5
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Mon May 18, 2020 12:03 pm

Nomadd wrote:
I have to wonder if Tim Dodd is human. I've seen him talk for two hours without taking a breath.

Each time is see one of his launch live-streams check in at 4+ hours I ask myself “isn’t he married?”.
 
ThePointblank
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Wed Jul 08, 2020 1:54 am

Independent review of Boeing's Starliner complete, with a total of 80 recommendations:

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-and-b ... t-reviews/

21 of these recommendations pertain to improving testing and ground simulations, including the notable addition of an end-to-end test prior to every Starliner flight;
10 recommendations involve assessing software requirements to ensure the spacecraft is sufficiently tested to meet them;
35 recommendations call for process and operational improvements, including an increased number of participants in reviews;
and 7 recommendations or updates to the spacecraft’s software in order to correct the MET, service module disposal, and communications link anomalies, and to add a new radio frequency filter to narrow the range of communications frequencies Starliner receives and prevent interference

Finally, there were 6 more recommendations for NASA Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate to incorporate into future programs:

Require that the systems engineering management plan delivered by each contractor contain specific requirements related to the contractor’s management approach.
Ensure that NASA reviews and approves the contractor’s hazard verification test plans prior to test execution.
Ensure NASA independent validation and verification (IV&V) teams provide insight to contractor IV&V agents.
Implement an approach that ensures alternate standards are reviewed and approved prior to beginning development work.
Develop a best practices document for use by future programs that implement the shared accountability model used in NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.
Evaluate Boeing’s actions developed by the joint independent review team for applicability post-certification.
 
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hilram
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Fri Jul 17, 2020 7:09 am

ThePointblank wrote:
Independent review of Boeing's Starliner complete, with a total of 80 recommendations:

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-and-b ... t-reviews/

21 of these recommendations pertain to improving testing and ground simulations, including the notable addition of an end-to-end test prior to every Starliner flight
(...)

It is truly beyond belief that this wasn't always in place! What happened to "if it ain't Boeing I'm not going"? You could almost turn that around at this point. :eek:
Flown on: A319, 320, 321, 332, 333, 343 | B732, 734, 735, 736, 73G, 738, 743, 744, 772, 77W | CRJ9 | BAe-146 | DHC-6, 7, 8 | F50 | E195 | MD DC-9 41, MD-82, MD-87
 
FGITD
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Sun Jul 19, 2020 5:51 am

hilram wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
Independent review of Boeing's Starliner complete, with a total of 80 recommendations:

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-and-b ... t-reviews/

21 of these recommendations pertain to improving testing and ground simulations, including the notable addition of an end-to-end test prior to every Starliner flight
(...)

It is truly beyond belief that this wasn't always in place! What happened to "if it ain't Boeing I'm not going"? You could almost turn that around at this point. :eek:


It is a fascinating and slightly concerning insight that “make sure the spacecraft actually works” somehow wasn’t on the preflight checklist.

I'm sure Boeing will get it right, and I certainly hope they do...but if I was one of those crews I'd certainly feel much better going up on spacex equipment.
 
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Nomadd
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Sun Jul 19, 2020 4:19 pm

FGITD wrote:
hilram wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
Independent review of Boeing's Starliner complete, with a total of 80 recommendations:

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-and-b ... t-reviews/

21 of these recommendations pertain to improving testing and ground simulations, including the notable addition of an end-to-end test prior to every Starliner flight
(...)

It is truly beyond belief that this wasn't always in place! What happened to "if it ain't Boeing I'm not going"? You could almost turn that around at this point. :eek:


It is a fascinating and slightly concerning insight that “make sure the spacecraft actually works” somehow wasn’t on the preflight checklist.

I'm sure Boeing will get it right, and I certainly hope they do...but if I was one of those crews I'd certainly feel much better going up on spacex equipment.


No inside information here, but it sounds like another symptom of management making engineering decisions and engineers without the cajones to object, the same problem that seems to be facing a lot of companies now.
I don't now if we'll ever see another Joe Sutter, willing to walk out of meetings and get fired (He thought more than once) by refusing to go along with decisions made by people who didn't know a slide rule from a hole in the ground. I don't know if it's old companies started by people, who understood the technical aspects of their visions, being replaced by business majors, or something more basic changing in the world.
Getting to space isn't easy, but so many issues have been ones that part time garage mechanics would have spotted, and legions of engineers and QA experts missed.
 
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Francoflier
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 4:50 am

T - a few hours for the launch of Mars 2020 on an Atlas 5 (541 config) today.

Who's excited?

Nasa's livestream here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JIB3JbIIbPU
I'll do my own airline. With Blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the airline.
 
LTEN11
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:52 am

FGITD wrote:
hilram wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
Independent review of Boeing's Starliner complete, with a total of 80 recommendations:

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-and-b ... t-reviews/

21 of these recommendations pertain to improving testing and ground simulations, including the notable addition of an end-to-end test prior to every Starliner flight
(...)

It is truly beyond belief that this wasn't always in place! What happened to "if it ain't Boeing I'm not going"? You could almost turn that around at this point. :eek:


It is a fascinating and slightly concerning insight that “make sure the spacecraft actually works” somehow wasn’t on the preflight checklist.

I'm sure Boeing will get it right, and I certainly hope they do...but if I was one of those crews I'd certainly feel much better going up on spacex equipment.


While I agree with the consensus that Boeing didn't do their job properly here, surely ULA and NASA must also share some responsibility as well. ULA as it was their launch vehicle and you would have thought that it's as much their responsibility that everything is integrated properly and testing done and NASA, well ultimately they are the prime customer and should be overseeing the project more diligently.

Or is this a case of NASA being giddy of the new boy doing really well and concentrating on them and leaving the old timer to their own devices :scratchchin:
 
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Francoflier
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 1:35 pm

Good launch for Atlas V and good insertion into orbit by the Centaur upper stage.

Mars 2020 now completes the trio of probes enroute to Mars during this launch opportunity, following Tianwen-1 and the UAE Mars mission.. Rendez vous February 18th next year for the landing on the Jezero crater.

Bon voyage...
I'll do my own airline. With Blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the airline.
 
meecrob
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 3:38 pm

LTEN11 wrote:
FGITD wrote:
hilram wrote:
It is truly beyond belief that this wasn't always in place! What happened to "if it ain't Boeing I'm not going"? You could almost turn that around at this point. :eek:


It is a fascinating and slightly concerning insight that “make sure the spacecraft actually works” somehow wasn’t on the preflight checklist.

I'm sure Boeing will get it right, and I certainly hope they do...but if I was one of those crews I'd certainly feel much better going up on spacex equipment.


While I agree with the consensus that Boeing didn't do their job properly here, surely ULA and NASA must also share some responsibility as well. ULA as it was their launch vehicle and you would have thought that it's as much their responsibility that everything is integrated properly and testing done and NASA, well ultimately they are the prime customer and should be overseeing the project more diligently.

Or is this a case of NASA being giddy of the new boy doing really well and concentrating on them and leaving the old timer to their own devices :scratchchin:


ULA was contracted to place the Starliner Capsule in a specified orbit which it did. Not sure what else they could have done really. Same with NASA. The whole point of the Commercial Crew Program is so NASA can offload the burden of developing flight hardware to a private sector company and "rent" its services to transport crew to the ISS, etc similar to how Soyuz capsules used to be "rented" by NASA. If there was a Soyuz failure with US astronauts aboard, would you say that NASA should take some blame for simply having purchased a ticket to ride?
 
flybaurlax
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 6:21 pm

Francoflier wrote:
Good launch for Atlas V and good insertion into orbit by the Centaur upper stage.

Mars 2020 now completes the trio of probes enroute to Mars during this launch opportunity, following Tianwen-1 and the UAE Mars mission.. Rendez vous February 18th next year for the landing on the Jezero crater.

Bon voyage...



It was a flawless launch! Super exciting. My best friend since kindergarten has worked on that rover since it's inception. He was there assembling it and attaching it to the various stages (cruise stage, aeroshell, heat shield), and mating it to the ULA platform. It's incredible what we can do when we put money into the right hands for peaceful purposes.

Go Perseverance!

As a side note, I was supposed to be there watching alongside him at Banana Creek, alas, FL couldn't get their act together and everything was canceled due to Covid. He couldn't even take his family on base, so had to watch it on the beach. I still should have joined him for that but felt hesitant flying from SEA-MCO into the cesspool of Covid.
Boilerup! Go Purdue!
 
FGITD
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 7:13 pm

meecrob wrote:
LTEN11 wrote:
FGITD wrote:

It is a fascinating and slightly concerning insight that “make sure the spacecraft actually works” somehow wasn’t on the preflight checklist.

I'm sure Boeing will get it right, and I certainly hope they do...but if I was one of those crews I'd certainly feel much better going up on spacex equipment.


While I agree with the consensus that Boeing didn't do their job properly here, surely ULA and NASA must also share some responsibility as well. ULA as it was their launch vehicle and you would have thought that it's as much their responsibility that everything is integrated properly and testing done and NASA, well ultimately they are the prime customer and should be overseeing the project more diligently.

Or is this a case of NASA being giddy of the new boy doing really well and concentrating on them and leaving the old timer to their own devices :scratchchin:


ULA was contracted to place the Starliner Capsule in a specified orbit which it did. Not sure what else they could have done really. Same with NASA. The whole point of the Commercial Crew Program is so NASA can offload the burden of developing flight hardware to a private sector company and "rent" its services to transport crew to the ISS, etc similar to how Soyuz capsules used to be "rented" by NASA. If there was a Soyuz failure with US astronauts aboard, would you say that NASA should take some blame for simply having purchased a ticket to ride?


I agree, I’m just not sure how ULA especially can take blame. Their part of the project worked flawlessly as it was supposed to. NASA I suppose can be blamed more, as they're supposed to have oversight, but the whole point of this project is to take some of that responsibility away from them so why bother outsourcing if they're going to have to do everything but build it anyway?

I think this sort of disconnect is why I like the spacex approach. Everything top to bottom is their work. One of the problems NASA has experienced in the past is having every part of a spacecraft designed by a different bidder. It worked Before when they needed the true culmination of knowledge and resources, but now it seems like it just adds more complication and potential for missteps.
 
LTEN11
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 7:16 pm

meecrob wrote:
LTEN11 wrote:
FGITD wrote:

It is a fascinating and slightly concerning insight that “make sure the spacecraft actually works” somehow wasn’t on the preflight checklist.

I'm sure Boeing will get it right, and I certainly hope they do...but if I was one of those crews I'd certainly feel much better going up on spacex equipment.


While I agree with the consensus that Boeing didn't do their job properly here, surely ULA and NASA must also share some responsibility as well. ULA as it was their launch vehicle and you would have thought that it's as much their responsibility that everything is integrated properly and testing done and NASA, well ultimately they are the prime customer and should be overseeing the project more diligently.

Or is this a case of NASA being giddy of the new boy doing really well and concentrating on them and leaving the old timer to their own devices :scratchchin:


ULA was contracted to place the Starliner Capsule in a specified orbit which it did. Not sure what else they could have done really. Same with NASA. The whole point of the Commercial Crew Program is so NASA can offload the burden of developing flight hardware to a private sector company and "rent" its services to transport crew to the ISS, etc similar to how Soyuz capsules used to be "rented" by NASA. If there was a Soyuz failure with US astronauts aboard, would you say that NASA should take some blame for simply having purchased a ticket to ride?


There is a slight difference to renting a capsule from a foreign entity to take people to the space station and return, than setting a standard of requirements and putting them out to tender, but yes they should be held partially accountable, they chose to use that system and if it fails it falls on them as to why they used it. Yes, I do realise that is out of necessity, but it's still NASA's choice to send people to the station, they could've chosen not too. Ultimately with the Commercial Crew Program, NASA has the final say whether they use the system or not and bear a responsibility that the system is safe to use. If that was not the case, they would have no right to pass judgement on the test outcome.

As for ULA, the Starliner didn't reach the specified orbit. Whether that was ultimately their fault is debatable, but their system didn't get their customer to where it should've been.
 
FGITD
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 8:29 pm

The anomaly that led to the mission abort occurred 31 minutes into the flight. By that point ULA's Atlas V was long since out of the equation. Starliner had its own internal error that caused a burn (by starliner itself) to be mistimed.

The booster usually gets the spacecraft to a predetermined orbit, and then the craft gets itself to the mission required orbit. So ULA did their part
 
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Nomadd
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 8:50 pm

meecrob wrote:
LTEN11 wrote:
FGITD wrote:

It is a fascinating and slightly concerning insight that “make sure the spacecraft actually works” somehow wasn’t on the preflight checklist.

I'm sure Boeing will get it right, and I certainly hope they do...but if I was one of those crews I'd certainly feel much better going up on spacex equipment.


While I agree with the consensus that Boeing didn't do their job properly here, surely ULA and NASA must also share some responsibility as well. ULA as it was their launch vehicle and you would have thought that it's as much their responsibility that everything is integrated properly and testing done and NASA, well ultimately they are the prime customer and should be overseeing the project more diligently.

Or is this a case of NASA being giddy of the new boy doing really well and concentrating on them and leaving the old timer to their own devices :scratchchin:


ULA was contracted to place the Starliner Capsule in a specified orbit which it did. Not sure what else they could have done really. Same with NASA. The whole point of the Commercial Crew Program is so NASA can offload the burden of developing flight hardware to a private sector company and "rent" its services to transport crew to the ISS, etc similar to how Soyuz capsules used to be "rented" by NASA. If there was a Soyuz failure with US astronauts aboard, would you say that NASA should take some blame for simply having purchased a ticket to ride?

The rides on Soyuz are a long ways from "simply" purchasing a ticket. NASA probably knows more about the workings of the modern Soyuz system than they guys who designed the originals.
 
ZaphodHarkonnen
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:28 pm

LTEN11 wrote:
meecrob wrote:
LTEN11 wrote:

While I agree with the consensus that Boeing didn't do their job properly here, surely ULA and NASA must also share some responsibility as well. ULA as it was their launch vehicle and you would have thought that it's as much their responsibility that everything is integrated properly and testing done and NASA, well ultimately they are the prime customer and should be overseeing the project more diligently.

Or is this a case of NASA being giddy of the new boy doing really well and concentrating on them and leaving the old timer to their own devices :scratchchin:


ULA was contracted to place the Starliner Capsule in a specified orbit which it did. Not sure what else they could have done really. Same with NASA. The whole point of the Commercial Crew Program is so NASA can offload the burden of developing flight hardware to a private sector company and "rent" its services to transport crew to the ISS, etc similar to how Soyuz capsules used to be "rented" by NASA. If there was a Soyuz failure with US astronauts aboard, would you say that NASA should take some blame for simply having purchased a ticket to ride?


There is a slight difference to renting a capsule from a foreign entity to take people to the space station and return, than setting a standard of requirements and putting them out to tender, but yes they should be held partially accountable, they chose to use that system and if it fails it falls on them as to why they used it. Yes, I do realise that is out of necessity, but it's still NASA's choice to send people to the station, they could've chosen not too. Ultimately with the Commercial Crew Program, NASA has the final say whether they use the system or not and bear a responsibility that the system is safe to use. If that was not the case, they would have no right to pass judgement on the test outcome.

As for ULA, the Starliner didn't reach the specified orbit. Whether that was ultimately their fault is debatable, but their system didn't get their customer to where it should've been.


ULA delivered Starliner to the exact spot and orbit they were contracted to. The fact that Starliner's following burn utterly failed has no bearing on ULA. ULA bare no blame for Boeing's stuff up.
 
meecrob
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:39 pm

LTEN11 wrote:
... they chose to use that system and if it fails it falls on them as to why they used it. Yes, I do realise that is out of necessity, but it's still NASA's choice to send people to the station, they could've chosen not too. Ultimately with the Commercial Crew Program, NASA has the final say whether they use the system or not and bear a responsibility that the system is safe to use. If that was not the case, they would have no right to pass judgement on the test outcome.

As for ULA, the Starliner didn't reach the specified orbit. Whether that was ultimately their fault is debatable, but their system didn't get their customer to where it should've been.


No, this was a TEST flight. Starliner is EXPERIMENTAL and thus, no guarantees of safety, explicit or otherwise, are part of the deal until test flights are complete. With zero non-drop-test in-flight telemetry to base any calculations off of prior to this test, would you trust NASA if they said Starliner was safe? I wouldn't. I'd think NASA showed me a bunch of pencil-whipped numbers.

As for ULA, the reason Starliner did not reach the correct orbit to rendezvous with ISS was due to Atlas placing Starliner in the correct initial orbit, then Starliner made a series of incorrect burns due to the mission clock issue.
 
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Francoflier
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Re: United Launch Alliance - Tests, Launches, News, Developments

Fri Jul 31, 2020 2:45 am

flybaurlax wrote:
Francoflier wrote:
Good launch for Atlas V and good insertion into orbit by the Centaur upper stage.

Mars 2020 now completes the trio of probes enroute to Mars during this launch opportunity, following Tianwen-1 and the UAE Mars mission.. Rendez vous February 18th next year for the landing on the Jezero crater.

Bon voyage...



It was a flawless launch! Super exciting. My best friend since kindergarten has worked on that rover since it's inception. He was there assembling it and attaching it to the various stages (cruise stage, aeroshell, heat shield), and mating it to the ULA platform. It's incredible what we can do when we put money into the right hands for peaceful purposes.

Go Perseverance!

As a side note, I was supposed to be there watching alongside him at Banana Creek, alas, FL couldn't get their act together and everything was canceled due to Covid. He couldn't even take his family on base, so had to watch it on the beach. I still should have joined him for that but felt hesitant flying from SEA-MCO into the cesspool of Covid.


Cool stuff. It must be great to see the fruit of years of hard work finally on its way.
The guys at ULA apparently did do a magnificent job punting it dead on. That's what makes ULA special and still hard to beat on these specialized and tricky missions.

I'm guessing your friend will be a wreck when it's landing time. I have nothing to do with this thing and I'll be nervous enough...
I'll do my own airline. With Blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the airline.

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Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos