First Generation Mission Plan: 90-Day Report (Battlestar Galactica) Highly complex Expensive ($450b over 30 years) Very high risk Low capabilities (30-day surface visit) scifi.com Credit: Sci-Fi Channel
Second Generation Mission Plan: Mars Direct Less complexity Cheaper ($40b over 10 years) Less risk Greater capabilities (2-year surface visit) Modifiers: Resources, Innovation Credit: NASA
Second Generation $$ Assumptions (from NASA/ESA study, Hunt & van Pelt, 2003)
Mars Direct Development Costs (Hunt and van Pelt, 2003) (billion-dollars) ESANASA Ares Heavy-Lift Vehicle Earth-Return Vehicle 47 Surface Elements 3 Agency Program Level TOTAL:18/2726/39
Mars Direct Ongoing Costs (Hunt and van Pelt, 2003) (billion-dollars) ESANASA Ares Heavy-Lift Vehicle 2 2 Earth-Return Vehicle.71 Surface Elements.7 Agency Program Level TOTAL: 3.6/ /7.0
"We've run the numbers, the budget numbers, and we can't afford this plan -we simply can't- if we follow the business-as-usual approach." - Christopher Shank, Special Assistant to the NASA Administrator, Return to the Moon Conference, 2005
Third Generation Mission Plan: Shadows of Medusae? Focus on reducing complexity!!! Low risk, low cost Capabilities?? Highly controversial Remember, it's Sci-Fi ! (for now)
#1: Public/Private Private sponsorship Less bureaucracy, better risk climate NASA involvement limited to research, tech development 90% cheaper? Parallel NASA program can be an insurance policy Credit: Paul Bourke
#2: Longer Mission Double the surface mission from two to four years (or more) Hardware rates are halved (or more) Habitat complexity increased, maybe Flag-and-footprint danger? Credit: Warner Bros.
#3: One-way Mission No ERV = less risk 50% less investment Goals focused upon settlement Hab, surface-ops more complex All else simpler (no nukes until later) Poor science
#4: Engineering First mission: tech demonstrator Highly focused, less complex All crew members primarily engineers Send scientists later Tele-robotics Less mobility
#5: Split Crew Two groups of three or four Smaller habitats – or larger rovers? Redundancy of the most critical asset: the crew Skills mix? Psych issues? RISK definition? Credit: Paul Bourke Image Credit: NASA
#6: Precursor Missions Dumb, cheap, simple supply drops Food, solar panels, water, and seeds Wide landing ellipse Scout for resources (water), conditions (air, radiation) No base integration Credit: Paul Bourke
#7: Tele-Robotics Several humanoid robots (Robonauts?) Limited autonomy Less spacesuit wear Less dust in habitat Immersive reality control devices Don't automate what isn't necessary
#8: No Nukes Nuclear propulsion is complex Use chemical rockets Equatorial landing sites Scaled solar power arrays Surface RTGs are OK Later missions: OK Credit: David Darling
#9: Artificial Gravity Reduced life- science complexity Chemical rockets Single gravity vector, magnitude Hab plumbing and layout less complex Need tethers and deployment system
#10: Surface Water Assume you can reach it Dangerous, but simple Need a two-year supply for the free- return trajectory (include in cargo!) Better for later or longer missions Credit: Warner Bros.
#11: Surface Rendezvous Simpler than orbital rendezvous More supplies available Gravity = familiarity Creative uses for inflatables Requires more fuel for ERV (energy) Credit: NASA
#12: Sample Return Keep it simple!!! Sending humans is more cost-effective Back-contamination Dust-return simpler Human mobility and sample selection In-situ measurement is simpler Credit: Mars Society
#13: Analogue Testing Earth analogues are simpler Pressure dome? Use public-outreach groups for labor, publicity Moon-testing must be simple and convenient Credit: Mars Society
#14: Heavy Lift Develop hardware for a wide range of applications A Mars exploration mission should NOT absorb the whole investment!! Simplicity over capability ELVs over RLVs
#15: Risk vs Wait No guarantee that future technology will reduce COMPLEXITY!... No guarantee of less RISK or COST Complexity theory Red Queen theory Credit: Warner Bros.
Shadows of Medusa Next-generation mission Complexity reduction Do the mission now Signed in vendor area by author (Brian Enke) Retail $35, Members $20 m Share and enjoy!