Lunar Missions: Earth-orbiting or Planetary?

 By: Mitch Lasky, Joe Hamaker, Galorath Federal

Abstract: At the 2017 NASA Cost and Schedule Analysis Symposium, the authors presented a paper on the cost differences between L1/L2 missions and planetary missions. The paper provided the technical characteristics of earth-orbiting, L1/L2, and planetary orbits relative to space vehicle design and a statistical analysis of cost differences in earth orbital, L1/L2 and planetary missions was presented. The conclusions were that L1/L2 missions are more “birds of a feather” with earth orbital missions than they are with planetary missions.

The authors are proposing in this abstract to use the same approach and methodology to examine lunar missions and try to determine what, if any, technical and/or cost differences there may be for lunar missions compared to earth orbital and planetary missions.