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NASA COTS

Posted by: Number2 - Tue Mar 21, 2006 4:56 am
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NASA COTS 
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Post    Posted on: Sun Aug 20, 2006 5:54 pm
Hello, Andy Hill,

regarding Kistler - I wonder if they need the extra money from NASA to develop and build a crew- or cargo-vehicle to be launched by their K-1-rocket. Both SpaceX and Kistler up to now only list(ed) launch prices for their rockets - without nay payload. SpaceDev and t/Space are talking about launcher PLUS payload where the payload is the DreamChaser or the CXV.

Might it be that NASA is focussed on teh rockets only? Too much focussed on those and so tending to compare apples to beans? The QuickReach under development at present has launch costs of $ 5 mio maximum only while the QuickReach 2 required for the CXV might cost $ 10 mio perhaps.

SpaceDev I don't remeber to have listed flight costs anywhere but they mainly talk about the DreamChaser and less about the boosters.

Might NASA have lost something out of view and consideration?



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Post    Posted on: Mon Aug 21, 2006 11:05 am
Something that may be of meaning here:
Quote:
Partners will be paid only if they succeed. Payments will be incremental and based upon the partners’ progress against a schedule of performance milestones contained in each Space Act agreement.
("BREAKING NEWS: COTS, NASA Invests in Private Sector Space Flight with SpaceX, Rocketplane-Kistler", www.spacefellowship.com/News/?p=1639#more-1639)

So the winners may never get the monay awarded if they don't succeed.

Another point is:
Quote:
Once demonstrated, NASA plans to purchase transportation services competitively in Phase 2.


So NASA also would purchase service(s) from competitors of phase 2 that didn't succeed in phase 1 - they simply wouldn't have got NASA money for their investment(s).



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)

EDIT

I had a look at www.kistleraerospace.com/k1vehicle/spec ... mance.html . Obviously their payload capacity is 2,750 kg to 4,750 kg - around t/Space's CXV. But still no prices are listed and I miised the specifications of their COTS-vehicle - as if they only offer the K-1 which I can't believe at present.


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Post    Posted on: Mon Aug 21, 2006 1:06 pm
This article says that Kistler will be launching from Woomera in Australia, I'm surprised they were chosen if this is the case as I thought that NASA wished to encourage the US space industry and avoid possible ITAR problems.

http://www.speroforum.com/site/article. ... t+launches

It also quotes Kistler as having spent $700M already on the K-1 craft. This is a ludicrous amount of money for a new space company to have spent and not launched. SpaceX's expenditure to date and Bigelow's entire proposed plan over the next 5 years when added together are less!

This article appears to suggest that Orbital Sciences will be doing most of the donkey work for RpK which leads me to wonder what they themselves will be contributing. I'm starting to get the impression from the RpK award that rather than supporting new smaller space companies NASA is just giving money to the usual suspects.

http://biz.yahoo.com/bw/060821/20060821005448.html?.v=1

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Post    Posted on: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:01 am
Sure looks that way Andy. Also the RpK rocket has been in 'developement' for 10 years!! Sounds pretty iffy to me. Like previously expressed opinions, I expected SpaceX to have a pretty good chance but would have expected something different in configuration to be picked.

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Post    Posted on: Sat Aug 26, 2006 3:24 am
You know, something occur to me. The COTS award effectively means Rpk and SpaceX is out of the running for ASP.

But should at a later stage NASA selects the final winner, can the loser re-enter for the ASP? I know, its just 50 mil compare to the COTS award, but what the heck?!


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Post    Posted on: Sat Aug 26, 2006 8:31 am
koxinga wrote:
You know, something occur to me. The COTS award effectively means Rpk and SpaceX is out of the running for ASP. !


I think Elon Mask has already said that SpaceX would not be eligable and the amount of ties that Kisstler have to government would almost certainly exclude them as well. As to winning a prize I think if either of them manage to get a working vehicle thaey will make more money from the contracts that Bigelow and others are going to place.

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Post    Posted on: Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:23 am
Regarding Kistler the article "NASA Places $500 Million Bet on Two Very Different Firms" ( www.space.com/spacenews/businessmonday_060828.html ) provides an update regarding the finances they need yet:
Quote:
Kistler Aerospace raised and spent more than $500 million before declaring Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2003. At the time, Kistler executives estimated that the company had on the order of $500 million more to spend to complete the K-1.




Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)

PS: And a possible explanantion is included quoting Elon Musk: [quote]“The space supply chain is so freaking expensive that if we were to subcontract out large subsystems we wouldn’t be able to make our cost number.â€


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Post    Posted on: Mon Aug 28, 2006 1:21 pm
The big money will be the contract(s) to supply the ISS and not the COTS money itself. There is nothing that says the COTS winner(s) will be given a contract; it is only development seed money. This is different than ASP, where the winner is guaranteed a contract.


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Post    Posted on: Tue Aug 29, 2006 12:44 pm
campbelp2002 wrote:
The big money will be the contract(s) to supply the ISS and not the COTS money itself. There is nothing that says the COTS winner(s) will be given a contract; it is only development seed money. This is different than ASP, where the winner is guaranteed a contract.

Not true. The ASP winner is not guaranteed a contract..
http://www.bigelowaerospace.com/multiverse/space_prize.php
SpaceX and Kistler can both search for a contract with Bigelow..
But none of them can win the ASP.

Bigelow is happy about the COTS, because in a way is is like a bigger version of his ASP. And he will also be able to use the results comming out of COTS.
http://thespaceshow.com/detail.asp?q=543

And now the teams that didn't win the COTS can go after the ASP instead.

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Post    Posted on: Tue Aug 29, 2006 7:48 pm
Voyager4D wrote:
The ASP winner is not guaranteed a contract.
:oops: You are right!


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Post    Posted on: Mon Sep 25, 2006 7:09 pm
RpK seem to have hit another snag. Orbital have decided to leave their COTS team and take $10m dollars in funding with them.

http://www.space.com/news/060925_kistler.html

It seems that orbital were not to happy about parts of RpK's business plan so left. From earlier articles it seemed that Orbital were going to do a lot of the actual work so this is likely to leave RpK with a big problem.

I wonder if NASA will reconsider the COTS award to RpK in favour of one of the other finalists in light o this development.

Here's an article in the Space Review which talks about some of the possible reasons that RpK got the award in the first place.

http://www.thespacereview.com/article/711/1

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Post    Posted on: Tue Sep 26, 2006 7:46 am
Hello, Andy Hill,

it's very interesting that the reason for which Orbital left the team is the business plan. The additional article you are linking to considers economical problems at a more detailed level and those problems may be that part of the business plan Orbital can't agree to.

The problems considered also may explain the high investments of several hundreds of $ mio. required - and they are a threat to low-cost. ...



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Post    Posted on: Tue Sep 26, 2006 5:01 pm
Kistler have said in the past that their K-1 launcher is 90% complete I am surprised that they required so much extra cash to finish the job, this suggests to me that their development has been expensive when compared to other private companies.

Do you think!!!

Kistler already blew 600Million.... That's $600 million :shock:

So where is the hardware?


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Post    Posted on: Tue Sep 26, 2006 6:05 pm
And they intend to spend a similar amount finishing the K-1. NASA awarded them $207 million (subject to completion of all milestones, of course) and to get it they promised a two-for-one investment of private capital. So, altogether, they intend to invest an additional $600 million to develop and fly their COTS vehicle and booster. Grand total: $1.2 billion -- assuming they're successful.

When you think about Kistler's approach -- subcontracting out almost everything to established aerospace companies -- $1.2 billion doesn't sound high; it sounds low. :?

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Post    Posted on: Wed Sep 27, 2006 11:56 am
The article "Rocketplane Kistler Says It Has New Strategic Partner in the Wings" is teling a few details:

[quote]Brinkley told Space News in a separate interview that the partnership fell apart last week after [b]Orbital Sciences “conditioned their investmentâ€


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