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The importance of operations, risk, and cost assessment to space transfer systems designThis paper examines several methodologies which contribute to comprehensive subsystem cost estimation. The example of a space-based lunar space transfer vehicle (STV) design is used to illustrate how including both primary and secondary factors into cost affects the decision of whether to use aerobraking or propulsion for earth orbit capture upon lunar return. The expected dominant cost factor in this decision is earth-to-orbit launch cost driven by STV mass. However, to quantify other significant cost factors, this cost comparison included a risk analysis to identify development and testing costs, a Taguchi design of experiments to determine a minimum mass aerobrake design, and a detailed operations analysis. As a result, the predicted cost advantage of aerobraking, while still positive, was subsequently reduced by about 30 percent compared to the simpler mass-based cost estimates.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Conference Paper
Ball, J. M.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Komerska, R. J.
(McDonnell Douglas Space Systems Co. Huntington Beach, CA, United States)
Rowell, L. F.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 15, 2013
Publication Date
August 1, 1992
Subject Category
Launch Vehicles And Space Vehicles
Report/Patent Number
IAF PAPER 92-0847
Accession Number
Funding Number(s)
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