The unfortunate events of the Columbia disaster will inevitably force a re-examination of both the process and goals of human space flight. What follows is a fairly detailed conceptual design of a blueprint covering access to space, space station operations, and missions to the moon and beyond through the end of the next decade. This blueprint predisposes no revolutionary technologies or greatly expanded budgets, but focuses on cost-effective, modular and extending technologies to expand humanity's reach from low earth orbit and out into the inner solar system.
This document consists of four sections: access to space, space station operation, lunar operations and missions beyond. Each section builds on the infrastructure of the previous sections with the goal of creating a sustainable, affordable human spaceflight infrastructure for the early part of this century.
Artwork: For the various vehicles I've used a hatch based on the Russian Soyuz design. Mainly, I've done this because I had a better feel for dimensions than I did for the androgynous hatch used on the IIS. When and if I find proper dimensions (some misguided webmaster seems to have removed the old IIS blueprints from the NASA web site in an attempt to support the new construction plan), I may modify the vehicle models and artwork to reflect the IIS hatch design.
Bibliography: Definitely a work in progress and not intended to be comprehensive, most material was gathered from the web and assumed to be accurate.
Completeness: This is as far as I've developed Version 3. Version 4 will eventual supplant this architecture, in response to NASA's Vision for Space Exploration.
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by Geir Lanesskog, All Right Reserved