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The selection of any new technological endeavor, and in particular the selection of new
space programs, must employ criteria with differing levels of importance and scope in a
logical sequence. In considering candidate space programs two classes of criteria are
of particular importance: the basic criteria used to establish overall objectives in certain
general areas, and the specific characteristics to be considered in selecting particular
programs in these areas.

Basic selection criteria relate to overall program-area benefits and technological
feasibility. Primary, top-level concerns to be considered when addressing new areas
for technological advancement should include at least the potentials to improve the quality
of life on earth, solve a broad-scale technological problem, increase national security,
and advance knowledge. In addition to meeting as many of these criteria as possible, a
candidate program should be both practical and feasible, particularly from the technolog-
ical standpoint.

In sequential application of these criteria, it would first be determined if a particular
program appears to satisfy the requirement for producing substantial benefits in several
or all of the listed categories. The assessment would then move forward to consider the
program's practicality and feasibility.

A key characteristic of programs that are designed to add to our existing knowledge is
that they always offer predictable benefits on which initial judgments can be based.
However, in our experience, such programs also produce substantial technological
benefits that could not be foreseen- and these benefits often equal or exceed those that
could be predicted.




Provide Substantial Benefit

■Improve the Quality of Life

■Solve a Broad-Scale Technological Problem ■National Security

■ Advancement of Knowledge

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Once overall program goals have been identified, more specific criteria should be used to assess the desirability of candidate programs. Program characteristics that Mc Donnell Douglas has found through experience to have a favorable effect on the attainment of benefits, both predictable and unanticipated, include:

High Technology Content-Space programs high in technology content will be more likely to produce important applications.

Ability to Stimulate Commercial Interest-Commercially attractive applications derived from space programs will be exploited by private industry in a free-enterprise society. Therefore, programs with the highest probability of producing commercially attractive applications should be given special consideration.

Emphasis on Maximum Use of Existing Resources - The Space Shuttle, for example, is designed to provide convenient and inexpensive means for transporting men and equipment to and from space. This long-sought capability is being developed at great expense, and now is the time to select programs that will maximize its use.

Logical Evolution - Programs that exhibit evolutionary "building block" patterns stimulate orderly advancement of capability and knowledge. We suggest that "proof of concept" demonstration milestones be used to validate technological feasibility and cost estimates as the program progresses, and to help ensure progression toward the original objectives.

Flexibility to Meet User Requirements – The ability of the program to meet changing user requirements is highly important. Programs should be structured to accept variations in such requirements as orbital conditions, number of operators, time on orbit, and data-handling capability.

Adaptability to Changing Conditions - Longer-term programs are sometimes subject to significant changes in external conditions such as program priorities, budgets, technological developments, political considerations, and national objectives. Ability to adapt to such changes is essential.

Growth Potential-Future space programs will offer maximum growth potential if modular growth is emphasized from the outset. Programs that exhibit modular growth potential will permit natural evolution into further developments.

Affordability-Cost considerations need to be examined in relationship to potential benefits, other competing requirements, and alternative means to the same end.


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■Flexibility to Meet User Requirements ■ Adaptability to Changing Conditions

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We believe that there is a logical evolutionary approach to the planning of future space
programs - an approach that is consistent with the selection criteria we have suggested,
This approach begins with our two most significant existing resources, the Shuttle and
Spacelab, and evolves into a family of growth options.

Because the key to the growth options is additional electrical power,

a power module
would be the first important new element in the evolutionary sequence. A free-flying
Spacelab to provide a facility for science and applications research could then be consid-
ered. A construction-system module should follow in order to develop the capability to
assemble large space structures in orbit.

With the development of these basic capabilities for electrical power, structural assembly,
and research, the space program could use the Space Transportation System to evolve in
many different directions. Some science and application payloads would be continually
manned, and others would be assembled by man in orbit but would operate unattended
except for occasional servicing.

These basic elements and payloads could become the stepping stones for further
explorations in earth orbit and deep space, Synchronous-orbit operations, lunar pro-
grams, interplanetary ventures, and solar-system explorations will all require such


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