back to article Boeing details 'Deep Space Gateway' for Mars mission staging

Aerospace outfit Boeing has detailed the hardware it thinks humanity will need to stage a piloted mission to Mars. Boeing is already working with NASA to develop the Space Launch System (SLS), the very heavy lifter it's hoped will power a Mars shot. Now it's also offered up conceptual designs for other kit that it thinks will …


      1. IT Poser

        Re: More USS Gravy Train than USS Enterprise

        "Any operations on (in) the moon are going to be very automated. There aren't going to be any minimum wage jobs or intern/grad student openings. The people are going to have to be very capable engineers with excellent fabricobbling skills that can work under massive pressure (or vacuum)."

        Starting out. Some of those engineers will want a pub with a hot bartender. Others will want their own comforts. Given enough time an off-world colony will develop minimum wage jobs. The bartender on Earth will think the Lunar bartender's wage is insane but, once we account for purchasing power the Lunatic barkeep will have similar financial concerns as one on Earth.

        1. Yesnomaybe

          Re: More USS Gravy Train than USS Enterprise

          Eventually they WILL need telephone-sanitisers.

  1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

    Trump will need the SLS to build hotels in space when he re-enters the business after completing his second, successful term as prez.

    Anyway, that's how I'd pitch this if I was in charge of NASA's budget.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Or there's no court jurisdiction in orbit - so nobody can impeach you.

      Plus the low stress on your heart means you could live until you're 150 (so long as you don't come back to Earth). Oh and the zero gravity sex is going to be amazing.

      Come to our space hotels for Zero-Bumpy Trumpy-Wumpy Rumpy-Pumpy!

    2. MondoMan

      Re: hotels in space

      Isn't that the plan for the real and funded Bigelow space program?

    3. Alan Brown Silver badge

      "Trump will need the SLS to build hotels in space"

      Is anyone else hoping that an infestation of Vermicious Knids shows up if he does?

  2. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    Con-gress gives NASA about $3Bn a year to build SLS

    But gives it nothing to build actual payloads (except Orion) to put on it.

    Is this a possible architecture to get to Mars? Yes.

    Will Con-gress hand over that much money to Boeing (the company that redesigned ISS 3 times and made a profit on every one) to do so.

    How dumb would they have to be?

    1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Re: Con-gress gives NASA about $3Bn a year to build SLS

      The whole point of government is to channel public money to the private sector without the public getting too suspicious. Normally, you mutter something about job creators. That's seems to do it.

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        Re: Con-gress gives NASA about $3Bn a year to build SLS @Brewster's Angle Grinder

        The whole point of government is to channel public money to the private sector without the public getting too suspicious. Normally, you mutter something about job creators. That's seems to do it........... Brewster's Angle Grinder

        I thought that was the job of bankers and banksters, BAG, with governments hanging on for their dear lives riding shotgun and providing protection and security with the propagation and maintenance of the fallacy that they be in command of any form of control of realities remotely with media programs and secret special stealthy intelligence sources.

        Is that not the true emerging and collapsing global picture of late?

        And furthermore, and with particular and peculiar reference to proposed journeys for visitations on Mars, ...... to imagine and/or believe the Deep Space Gateway is more than a Vapourware Portal is AIMadness confirmed in Root and a Prime Sublime Route for Cyberattacking Command and Creative Computer Control of CHAOS* for New Orderly World Ordered Orders.

        For some, who may be the many, is that to be extraordinarily rendered as a nightmare moneypit into which they will fall, because they will fail to recognise and seize the rewards for mutually beneficial operation of the opportunities and responsibilities available in everyday zeroday vulnerability exploitation. For significant others, who may or may not be more than just a choice few, is that an Immaculate Starway to Heavens. I Kid U Not.

        Now for a chill, as you contemplate the red or blue pill ....... Stairway to Heaven, Led Zeppelin

        *Clouds Hosting Advanced Operating Systems .....which may or may not be Surreal Alien ProgrammedD Firmware for Future Target Market Operations.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Would it be cheaper to just pile up loads of money outside Boeing HQ, until you can just walk to the Moon?

      Mars is a bit more difficult. But surely once you've got to the Moon, you just burn a few more dollars that you've carried up there to fuel your rocket?

      Dollar-fired steam powered rockets to Mars. Why not?

    2. Fatman


      <quote>Boeing: executive bonus pool corporate pork barrel is depleted SEND MORE MONEY NOW STOP</quote>


  4. Kharkov

    SLS again? Sigh...

    Best case unit price $500 million, more probable unit price $1 billion plus. And used to... make exploration of the Moon possible... like a staging area is needed to go to the Moon. Apollo 11 & the Halfway Station, anyone?

    While the private sector is developing bigger, better, reususable rockets at much lower prices.

    1. phuzz Silver badge

      Yes, but it's fine because it's only the Yanks that have to pay for it, while the rest of us get to watch big rockets :)

      Someone else's tax dollars at work is always best.

  5. x 7

    we're doing a fine job screwing up this planet. What gives us the right to pollute another with our presence?

  6. Gene Cash Silver badge

    Another paper space-thing study

    There's been thousands of them. None have gone anywhere.

  7. JJKing

    A lunar mining operation is a candidate.

    That part scares me a bit/lot. Having seen what greedy corporations have done to this planet, imagine what they will try and get away with where there is nobody watching. Also, if the Moon was to be mined and its' mass was reduced, how is that going to affect the tides on Earth especially with global warming making that big salty bathtub get fuller and fuller. While there may be science about the Moon effects, I haven't seen any.

    1. Tom 7

      Lunar mining?

      Not worth it. Scraping might be good if you can find where a meteorite rich in something you want landed. But without lots of geothermal activity and water flow to concentrate certain minerals you'll find the moon is made mostly of moon rock and not anything useful.

      1. cosymart

        Re: Lunar mining?

        Quote of the month "the moon is made mostly of moon rock" gasp!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @JJKing -I can't tell if you're being tongue in cheek with the ridiculous stuff you wrote there or if it;s just that you don't understand the science/numbers well enough.

      With regard to the mass of the moon being affected, rock on Earth comes in at about 3-5 times the density of water, so 3-5 tonnes per cubic metre. Let's say that mining operation removed a cubic kilometre of material from the moon - that's be one thousand million cubic metres or about 3-5 thousand million tons or rock excavated. Some (most?) of that wouldn;t be useful material, and would doubtless be piled up in spoil heaps (or used to fill holed made by early mining efforts). But even if it were ALL removed, compare that humoungous amount of material with the bulk of the moon, which is something over 3000km (that's 3million metres) in diamter. The effect of removing an entire cubic kilometre of material of the moon (which really is a staggering amount of material) would be so insignificant that tides on Earth just would not be noticeably affected.

  8. F111F

    Missing Link?

    Did I miss something? Where is the detailed list of equipment Boeing thinks it needs for the "Gateway"?

  9. JeffyPoooh

    Apollo 8

    " it's long been assumed we'll need to spend some time near the Moon....before trying to visit Mars."

    First group with hardware likely to function correctly will be off; off to make ten orbits around Mars and read Genesis at Xmas.

  10. JeffyPoooh

    First person on Mars...

    It'll be somebody from an NHK-Discovery Channel joint venture documentary video crew, setting up the Sol before The Big Day.

    After a while, they'll notice what they've done.

    Retrospectively they'll figure out that The First on Mars was Barbara Plumpton from the Catering contractor. Upon arrival, she had wandered out first, to set up the tables for that first Martian lunch.

    Congratulations Mrs Plumpton. First Human on Mars.

    Lovely sandwiches by the way.


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