Shuttles to Mars?

sputnik

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I've always thought the lunar shuttle proposals were the epitome of silly, but this really takes the banana.

Sheesh. Boost 500,000 lbs of penalty weight to Mars. Does it have life support? Not enough. Does it supply power? Not enough. Does it have an aeroshell? Not enough. Can it land? Not by itself. What do we get for 500,000 lbs? Wouldn't it make more sense to launch the Spacehab double modules by themselves, with some hand-holding for power and other systems?

Sheesh.
 

Usquanigo

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This whole one way trip thing is asinine. It's all the rage anymore too. Why are people so obsessed with getting there that we have to sacrifice people on a one way trip. :rolleyes:
 

Scarecrow

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:rofl:If he really, really wanted to use the life support, RCS, etc., of the shuttles instead of a separate module, the least he could do would be to cut the wings and vertical stabilizers off before TMI. And dispense with the heat shield, and most of the structure and other skin. And the SSMEs. And the cargo bay doors. And by the time you've done that, all you've got left is... never mind, just use something purpose built.
 

Urwumpe

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If you want a good long-term life-support system, take parts from the ISS. For example a modernized version of the Russian Service Module.

But not the Shuttle - even with solar arrays, it is not capable for such flights.
 

Missioncmdr

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Sounds like whoever wrote that has read Stephen Baxter's Titan a few too many times.
 

n72.75

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my guess is that they're not smokeing weed, more like aerosolized polychlorinated biphenyls.:rofl:


I've always thought the lunar shuttle proposals were the epitome of silly, but this really takes the banana.


Sheesh. Boost 500,000 lbs of penalty weight to Mars. Does it have life support? Not enough. Does it supply power? Not enough. Does it have an aeroshell? Not enough. Can it land? Not by itself. What do we get for 500,000 lbs? Wouldn't it make more sense to launch the Spacehab double modules by themselves, with some hand-holding for power and other systems?

Sheesh.



Exactaly, why would you launch so much dead weight that youre never going to use. I could almost understand if the wings where going to be used to return to earth...100 or so yeaso in the furure...but mars??

Why not just build something that is more suted for the job...yeah it will take more time and cost more money, but the rewards and the benifits to costs ratio will be much higher.

Never underestimate the ability of the general public to be stupid!!!
 
Last edited:

Arrowstar

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:rofl:If he really, really wanted to use the life support, RCS, etc., of the shuttles instead of a separate module, the least he could do would be to cut the wings and vertical stabilizers off before TMI. And dispense with the heat shield, and most of the structure and other skin. And the SSMEs. And the cargo bay doors. And by the time you've done that, all you've got left is...

Orion? :lol:
 

Star explorer

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No return plan good luck finding someone who is stupid enough to actually fly on that mission.
 

Eagle

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No return plan good luck finding someone who is stupid enough to actually fly on that mission.

Heck, I'd volunteer for a one way Mars mission, assuming that I could live on Mars indefinably. Doesn't matter how unreasonable the hardware is if I get to go.

I'll be king of Mars and wear a shiny hat. :lol:

but yeah, its just an unreasonable proposal by somebody who knows it will never happen. They just proposed it because its technically feasible but utterly irrational.
 

Usquanigo

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The other side of that, aside from being one way and wasteful - the lack of gravity for 9 months could atrophy you dangerously when you hit Mars grav. (well, according to some research I recently came across, not being a Dr I can't vouch for it's validity personally)
 

Linguofreak

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The other side of that, aside from being one way and wasteful - the lack of gravity for 9 months could atrophy you dangerously when you hit Mars grav. (well, according to some research I recently came across, not being a Dr I can't vouch for it's validity personally)

Well, I think I saw something in the article about tethering the shuttles together and spinning the whole assembly for centrifugal gravity.

It's still crazy.
 

T.Neo

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I can think of many ways to use Space Shuttles to go to Mars, including mashing them up and turing them into dogfood, all of which are more plausible then this.
 

cjp

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I can think of many ways to use Space Shuttles to go to Mars, including mashing them up and turing them into dogfood, all of which are more plausible then this.

Just use the scenario editor.
 

T.Neo

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Just use the scenario editor.

:lol:

EDIT:

Took a little time to put together this for the default Orbiter Atlantis.
Requires Velcro NEXUS.
I think the date should about right to launch to Mars.
Code:
[SIZE=2]
BEGIN_DESC
Shuttle to Mars!
With magical air-startable SSME's!
END_DESC
BEGIN_ENVIRONMENT
System Sol
Date MJD 52795.0000000000
END_ENVIRONMENT
BEGIN_FOCUS
Ship Nexus
END_FOCUS
BEGIN_CAMERA
TARGET Nexus
MODE Extern
POS 2.37 144.74 -18.93
TRACKMODE TargetRelative
FOV 40.00
END_CAMERA
BEGIN_HUD
TYPE Surface
END_HUD
BEGIN_MFD Left
TYPE Surface
END_MFD
BEGIN_MFD Right
TYPE Orbit
PROJ Ship
REF Earth
END_MFD
 
BEGIN_SHIPS
STS-101:Atlantis
STATUS Landed Earth
BASE Cape Canaveral:6
HEADING 0.00
PRPLEVEL 0:1.000 1:1.000
NAVFREQ 0 0
CONFIGURATION 2
CARGODOOR 0 0.0000
GEAR 0 0.0000
KUBAND 0 0.0000
ARM_STATUS 0.5000 0.0000 0.0000 0.5000 0.5000 0.5000
SAT_OFS_X 0.000
SAT_OFS_Y 0.000
SAT_OFS_Z 0.000
; CARGO_STATIC_MESH Carina_cradle
; CARGO_STATIC_OFS 0.000 -1.650 0.050
END
Nexus:Nexus_Stage1
STATUS Landed Earth
BASE Cape Canaveral:6
HEADING 270.00
TGT_HEADING 095.0
FUEL 1.000
IGNITENEXT 0
CONFIGURATION 0
FAIRING 2 1.0 -68.5 0.0 3.0
CAMERA 0 0 60.0
SERIESBURN 0 STS-101 0.0 -3.3 -25.0 0.0 -1.0 0.0
PAYLOAD Fair1 NexusBigFg1 NexusBigFg1 0 0 12.5 20043.0 0 0.0 1.0
PAYLOAD Fair2 NexusBigFg2 NexusBigFg2 0 0 12.5 20043.0 0 0.0 1.0
END
END_SHIPS
[/SIZE]
 

TMac3000

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Here is my proposal for a real Mars spacecraft (and possibly any other planet), using current technology.

Start with four to six converted single-stage liquid-fueled ICBMs, and two external tanks from the Shuttles. Connect ducting pipes and pumping equipment. This will form the main propulsion system.

The flight deck/command module should be based on the cockpit of the Shuttle, but completely refitted with new controls and instrumentation.

Behind the command module are two cylindrical structures, positoned in "over and under" fashion. These are the habitat section and the cargo bay. These should use technology from the International Space Station.

Landing would be accomplished with two Eagle-style lunar landers, but larger and with more delta-v. Three landers and two cargo pods with the team's equipment and supplies would be dropped into the atmoshpere.

When the stay is completed, the landers would take off and dock to the mothership, which would then return home. The trip would be one-way for the cargo pods, at least until the ship can come back for them.

It's basically the Apollo mission with a lot more delta-v.:)
 

steph

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Depends... You have to make sure it's got enough fuel for the job (which means loads of it). Besides, I don't think you can fire ICBM engines for that long. Remember, they were designed to fire for a certain amount of time, and the ship would most likely fire them for much longer. And there also is the problem of restarting them when returning home, how the components will cope with such extreme conditions for a long time and also the G-loads that the ship has to endure.
And apart from all these issues, if ANYTHING fails, it's game over.
 

Calsir

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Here is my proposal for a real Mars spacecraft (and possibly any other planet), using current technology.

What are the deltaV requirements for such a mission? Assuming 9km/s to reach leo and then about 7 between the heliocentric transfer and entering LMO (low mars orbit :) ) a total of 16km/s deltav budget is required (assuming an orbital station, in order to land a station another 4 kps are required).

Assuming a generous Isp of 500 seconds (more than SSME, Vulcain 2 and Kestrel) for a total ejection velocity of about 5kps, the fuel mass ratio would be of 96% in the first case and of 98% in the second.

Even waiving the weight of the rockets involved whose effect could be lessened by multi-staging, a 200 ton station would need about 11000 tons of fuel. For comparison, a Space Shuttle orbiter weighs 70 tons empty.

I would not call it feasible.

edit: deltav figures taken out of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delta-v_budget, as I was too lazy to figure them out because some old code I had to compute them is actually broken.
 

T.Neo

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Ha. Just flew to Mars. I had to refuel 3-4 times using scn editor, but I'll put that down to my bad piloting. Seeing the shuttle spinning slowly in deep space reminded me of of the movie "Rocketman".
 
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