Development of facilities to support the new NASA constellation space exploration program

Robert P. Kehoe, G. Edward Gibson, Donald A. Whittington, Wayne M. Bartlett

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

NASA is currently challenged with the development of a new family of spaceflight vehicles which need to fly as soon as possible after the Space Shuttle is retired in 2010. Consequently, it is faced with converting or constructing facilities across multiple NASA centers enabling support to a new family of space flight vehicles. Testing, verification and manufacturing facilities need to be constructed or modified on critical path schedules supporting new hardware certifications and processing. Ground Operations facilities need to be customized to the new family of vehicles. NASA is planning to return to the Moon in 2018 to begin building a permanent lunar base. Lunar hardware will require engineering development and testing facilities which simulate the dusty lunar vacuum environment. Testing technologies related to newly developed materials will need facilities which allow the development and certification of thermal protection systems and heat shields. New flight vehicles are significantly larger than Apollo Program vehicles and further drive facility sizing decisions. The range and complexity of these facility requirements requires intensive planning and project management efforts. This article will outline the extent of these facility needs, the best practices used to develop the projects, and lessons learned thus far from these efforts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEarth and Space Conference 2008
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 11th Aerospace Division International Conference on Engineering, Science, Construction, and Operations in Challenging Environments
PublisherASCE - American Society of Civil Engineers
ISBN (Print)9780784409886
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008
EventEarth and Space Conference 2008: Proceedings of the 11th Aerospace Division International Conference on Engineering, Science, Construction, and Operations in Challenging Environments - Long Beach, CA, United States
Duration: Mar 3 2008Mar 5 2008

Publication series

NameEarth and Space Conference 2008: Proceedings of the 11th Aerospace Division International Conference on Engineering, Science, Construction, and Operations in Challenging Environments
Volume323

Other

OtherEarth and Space Conference 2008: Proceedings of the 11th Aerospace Division International Conference on Engineering, Science, Construction, and Operations in Challenging Environments
CountryUnited States
CityLong Beach, CA
Period3/3/083/5/08

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Environmental Engineering

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  • Cite this

    Kehoe, R. P., Gibson, G. E., Whittington, D. A., & Bartlett, W. M. (2008). Development of facilities to support the new NASA constellation space exploration program. In Earth and Space Conference 2008: Proceedings of the 11th Aerospace Division International Conference on Engineering, Science, Construction, and Operations in Challenging Environments (Earth and Space Conference 2008: Proceedings of the 11th Aerospace Division International Conference on Engineering, Science, Construction, and Operations in Challenging Environments; Vol. 323). ASCE - American Society of Civil Engineers. https://doi.org/10.1061/40988(323)91