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Questions tagged [cost]

Questions regarding the amount of money required to perform or sustain space exploration.

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150 views

Is the monetary cost of space programs misleading?

Car production in the us costs about a million tons of steel per year which is maybe 99% recycled. Say a rocket costs 100 tons and is expendable. Launching 100 rockets yearly is a decent share of ...
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Were Apollo astronauts charged for their berths during their missions?

In a recent article in The Guardian I ran into the following statement about the Apollo astronauts: On their way to and from the moon, each earned $8 a day, minus a fee for a bed on their Apollo ...
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How much did it cost to refurbish the Launch Complex 39 hardware after an Apollo Saturn V launch?

A launch pad used for a rocket of some 30-35 MNewtons of thrust does not come out of it unscathed. It must be refurbished before it can be used again. How much does that cost? As an indication of such ...
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Funding for small astrobiology fieldwork project

I am a postdoctoral scholar who plans to conduct a small project at the MDRS, a Mars simulation volunteer project. The project will be to conduct DNA sequencing of soil samples using a handheld nano ...
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1answer
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What just didn't happen with NASA's Moon-to-Mars directorate?

The Spacenews.com article Sirangelo leaves NASA after exploration reorganization scrapped says: WASHINGTON — A former space industry executive who joined NASA to guide its revamped lunar ...
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What is the most expensive part of a rocket?

I want to say fuel is, but this Question Why isn't stainless steel used for rocket engines? has got me thinking about cost in the long run. What part commonly found on most rockets cost the most ...
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1answer
662 views

How much does it cost to train an astronaut?

What are the total costs to train an astronaut from selection until they are ready to go to space? How much time does it take? And is it possible to break down the costs by category (salary, training, ...
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1answer
126 views

Is post-X-prize Beresheet better than the X-prize candidate?

As mentioned in this question the total budget of the Lunar X-prize was about US \$30 million, and that included some other prizes beside the winner. However the budget of Beresheet post-X-prize ...
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Are there any scientific or technical reasons for defunding WFIRST?

This week, the White House announced its proposed budget for fiscal year 2020, which of course includes NASA's budget for the same time period. Notably, for the second year in a row, it proposes ...
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1answer
276 views

Cost of an earth observation cubesat satellite like Planet Labs' Doves?

With the cubesat standard and more and more components being available off the shelf, this should really bring down the price of building a (simple) earth observation platform. I am curious how low a ...
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2answers
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How to get experiments to space?

How would a person get an experiment done in space? What is the chain of command on something like that? I would like to drop some inflated balloons from space to reenter the atmosphere to see which ...
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How much fuel does the Falcon Heavy use? What is the price RP-1?

Does anyone know how much fuel the Falcon Heavy can hold, the RP-1 fuel and liquid oxygen as oxidizer, and how much of that will it use to get to a certain point? I don't know how i would calculate ...
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What would it cost to bring a 1 gram payload to the CMBR rest frame (i.e. Δv 368 km/s ?)

Suppose we wanted to do a very small experiment in (or very close to) the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation rest frame, which we are travelling at 368 ± 2 km/s relative to. Without considering the ...
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Split cost of bringing 1 kg to LEO

Historically seen, space logistics prices decrease, as shown here, from $20K/kg to expected 1.7K/kg thanks to reusable rockets. But, how does the cost split look like and vary in detail? i.e. "fuel - ...
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1answer
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Funding for Government Run Space Organizations

Do government run space organizations make any money from services they provide (for example NASA's data about the Earth or their services for aviation companies)? Or do they provide all their ...
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How much more expensive are scientific instruments for space use?

The discussion on How cold is the Martian sky at night? Or the day for that matter? made me wonder. How much more expensive are scientific instruments on spacecraft or landers, compared to their ...
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1answer
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Why is Falcon 9's fairing so big?

The Falcon 9 fairing costs millions of dollars. It is 5.2 meters wide while the rocket itself is only 3.7 meters wide. There is no aerodynamic reason that the fairing has to be so big, since Dragon ...
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1answer
543 views

What is the cost of the propulsion system and thrusters as a % of the total satellite?

Small (nano) satellites and cubesats are between \$100k and \$500k. What percentage of the total is the cost of the propulsion system?
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Cost Estimation of Satellite propulsion systems

As part of my research project, i am evaluating various satellite propulsion systems. Are there any databases or forums where the ROM cost of a Satellite propulsion system is listed. A few new space ...
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Why is fuel cheap compared to rocket?

The fuel for a Falcon 9 (SpaceX) costs around \$200,000 per launch, while the launch itself costs \$62,000,000. Safety precautions, rocket shell and rocket engines cost a lot. But why not fuel?
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How much did the fuel for the space shuttle missions cost?

I'm looking for a rough estimate on how much it costs. I understand that it is a propellant mix, and that NASA contracts a company to produce it, but I am yet to come across a figure per kg of the ...
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3answers
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Cost-effective Space Shuttle: was it feasible?

As far as I understand, NASA's Space Shuttle was initially conceived as a cheap way of launching people and cargo into orbit, with one-week vehicle turnaround time and dozens of missions per year. ...
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1answer
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How much do solar cells for space cost? [closed]

There is a lot of discussion about refueling rockets in deep space. This is to be managed by electrolysis of water powered by solar cells. This requires a lot of energy so one needs a lot of solar ...
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With today's technology, how much would it cost to put a man on the Moon again? [closed]

Has there been any current estimates for the cost of putting a man on the moon, today? I'm curious how much the price has dropped with the improvement of technology, compared to the original moon ...
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316 views

Zenit Launch Costs

I am compiling a table of data on price-mass ratios of various modern rockets, and I have been unable to find any information on how much it costs to launch a Zenit rocket. Does anybody know how much ...
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Are fission thermal engines more expensive to develop than chemical engines?

Is there something inherent in the technology of a fission thermal rocket engine that makes it a more expensive endeavour than developing yet another chemical engine? For example because of the ...
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1answer
399 views

How much did the Apollo boilerplate rockets cost?

The point of a boilerplate is to test out the features of a system at a reduced cost. I would like to know what it cost to build the Apollo boilerplates. There was a series of such rockets so I would ...
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1answer
755 views

How much does a launch scrub cost?

SpaceX (among others) does a series of final automated checks 10 seconds before launch, and aborts the launch if any of them fail. Yesterday and today, one of them did (each time), causing the launch ...
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2answers
440 views

What's the marginal cost of a second interplanetary space probe copy, like Voyager 2 or Viking 2?

During the old space race days, launching double or multiple scientific probe copies seems to have been the standard. It should have the advantage of sharing the one time fixed development costs while ...
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What makes time on the DSN so expensive?

David Hammen wrote in a comment on Why there is not a single orbiter for Uranus or Neptune? that: The two Voyager satellites still receive multiple Deep Space Network contacts per week, each of ...
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How much will SpaceX's constellation of Internet satellites cost?

SpaceX has a plan to launch up to 4K satellites to provide global Internet access. Is there a reasonable estimate of how much this constellation would cost to launch? Also, as the minimum number of ...
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1answer
617 views

Why is the cubesat structure so expensive?

The 1U cubesat structure is a 10*10*10 cm metal cube with frames. But it costs around 2000-3000€, which is really expensive. I've found it for example on these sites: https://www.isispace.nl/product/...
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How much in revenue did NASA report for the US fiscal 2016?

In US dollars, how much revenue did NASA project in 2015 for its fiscal 2016 budget and what percentage was manifested during or before Q4 2016? The answer may include departmental, management or ...
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1answer
635 views

Comparison between solid rocket fuels. Which are better by performance and cost? [closed]

I am interested for a comparison of solid rocket fuels by their performance and cost. Comparison by specific impulse (Isp), energy that gives (which one is more energitic), density, cost to ...
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40 views

Average cost of SpaceWalk [duplicate]

How much does it costs NASA for an astronaut to perform a single spacewalk? Not including salary just the cost of actually sending someone into space.
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2answers
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Building a ultra-small almost space vehicle

I'm quite interested in small rockets-balloons that can reach more than 50km, thus I want to build one myself (With my school financial support). I just want it to carry like a 350g-450g equipment. ...
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1answer
446 views

How will the BE-4 engine “Save taxpayer money”?

In this explanation of the Blue Origin BE-4 engine, the text says: LOWEST COST Blue Origin’s BE-4 requires NO taxpayer dollars. Fully funded The BE-4 is fully paid for by the private ...
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3answers
6k views

What is the rough breakdown of rocket costs?

What is the breakdown of a typical rocket- say, a Delta IV? From what I've heard 99% of the cost is engineering labor but I haven't seen any source for that. I just need the manufacturing cost of the ...
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1answer
848 views

Why does a Falcon Heavy cost more with a heavier payload?

While trying to find the priceof a Falcon Heavy launch, I noticed the following: \$90M (<8.0mT), [\$130M (>8.0mT)] Why is there a $40 million difference in price for the heavier payload? Also, ...
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2answers
317 views

What exactly makes Red Dragon costly

Red Dragon is currently in the news again. Except for its enormous amount of ambition and its relatively large risk of failure (e.g. Falcon Heavy RUD, a SuperDraco failure on Mars, mixing imperial and ...
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5answers
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Do 3D printers in space stations mean a significant cost reduction?

I just watched a VSauce2 video, at the end of which certain NASA animations were shown about some of their recent innovations. One of them included use of printers in the ISS. Do they actually mean a ...
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1answer
125 views

ISS business venture cost?

How much would it cost for a business to place some self-maintaining electronic equipment aboard the ISS? Would it be a monthly fee, or a one-time transportation and installation fee? Would that ...
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181 views

Juno to Jupiter Budget

Would the Juno program be more cost effective if the spacecraft took a direct flight to Jupiter rather than using gravitational pull from planets, which took nearly 5 years instead of say, 2 years? ...
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1answer
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Why do we always only launch one probe? [duplicate]

Juno got me thinking again about scaling and maximizing the output of space exploration missions. It seems weird that (with the notable exception of Mars rovers) we (as in humanity) always only start ...
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How will the UK leaving the EU affect ESA?

Now that the UK has voted to leave the European Union, how is that going to affect the European Space Agency? How much funding and participation does ESA receive from the UK based on the EU ...
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1answer
544 views

What makes SLS (Space Launch System) \$10 Billion (or \$36 Billion) project?

The SLS development budget is \$18 billion (currently \$10 billion are spent for SLS rocket), although another site shows even \$35B. If I am not mistaken SLS is a new & improved version of ...
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3answers
287 views

Any interest in crewed mission to Mars without landing?

Would there be any interest in a manned mission to Mars without landing? This could consists of none (just a flyby) to many revolution(s) around the planet. Would it cut a consequent part of the cost ...
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How does NASA compare with other space agencies in terms of RoI (in terms of science: papers published per $ invested) [closed]

How does NASA's funding compare to other space agencies' funding? How many papers are they publishing and how many US patents do they have? Compare different space agencies in terms of number of ...
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1answer
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Cost of an EVA on the ISS?

What does it cost for an astronaut to spend an hour outside the ISS, in terms of astronaut time mission preparation time ground support personnel space suit "rent" (?) Does this cost vary for a ...
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1answer
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What do the gravitational wave findings mean for Evolved Laser Interferometer Space Antenna satellite

Being announced as the discovery of the decade (sucks to work in science for the next 4 years I guess) the recent announcement of the discovery of gravitational waves from the collision of two black ...