Print 31 comment(s) - last by Fritzr.. on Aug 1 at 6:02 AM

Program is not too risky or too expensive says NASA

The current NASA shuttle fleet is set to retire by the end of 2010 and will be replaced no sooner than 2015 by a new system.

NASA is currently in the design and testing phase on the replacement to the shuttle fleet. NASA is planning on a return to rocket power similar to the method used to get the Apollo 11 astronauts into space for their moon landing. The new space flight program is called constellation and NASA is defending the program asserting that it is not too expensive or too risky.

A committee appointed by President Obama and engineers working on the Constellation program at NASA has had to defend its work to the committee reports MSNBC. Head NASA researchers have spent four years designing the Ares rocket that will replace the shuttle fleet and maintain that the program is the safest and fastest way to get America back into space.

Steve Cook, head of the Ares project said, "We have done what we said we would do, and we are well on the way to our first test flight."

MSNBC reports that other managers on the Ares program told members of the committee that they were working through technical issues with the rocket system. One fear is that powerful energy waves created during launch would injure astronauts or make it impossible for them to perform basic duties. The chance of this happening is admittedly slim according to the managers.

Broad options will reportedly be offered to Obama from continuing to use the shuttle fleet to moving forward with the Constellation program unchanged. The final report from the committee will be presented on August 31. NASA plans to test a version of the Ares I rocket by October 31.

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RE: Energy wave?
By pgwulfing on 7/31/2009 11:42:06 AM , Rating: 2
This may be the type of enigne used. NASA put a lot of effort and money into development of the SCRAMJET. It can be used to boost the velocity while the ship is still in the atmosphere. Then, conventional rockets take over.

RE: Energy wave?
By Fritzr on 8/1/2009 6:02:16 AM , Rating: 2
SCRAMJet is a variant of the RAMJet. Most jet engines have a turbine air compressor on the intake end of the engine to create a high pressure air fuel mix for combustion.

RAMJets and their variants do away with the turbine components and use airspeed to 'ram' air into the intake throat where it is compressed by by constriction. The high pressure air fuel mix is then burned in the combustion chamber resulting in even higher pressures that exits through the rear end of the engine.

SCRAMJets are being considered as power plants for the atmospheric flight portion of a rocket launch. The rocket stage would seperate and head for space when the airbreathing engines reach their altitude limit.

A problem all members of the RAMJet family have in common is that they require a high airspeed to keep the intake pressurized. They can be started while stationary by putting a blower in front of the engine, but they require a continuous high speed airflow both to start and keep running.

However the Ares rocket IS a rocket carrying fuel and oxidizer. It will not be using an airbreathing engine for any part of it's flight.

"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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