I am so freaking in to all of it. I am fascinated that there is a human presence (or better yet, human "footprints" so to speak) on another planet.
This low-earth orbit crap is just old hat. We need to get on the moon and start colonizing it and mining that m-f.
Just think, in 200 years or so, people are going to be taking Spring Break on the moon! It probably won't even be that expensive and tour guides will bring people in space suits on tours of the surface...tourists will be able to see the earth in all of it's brilliant light waxing and waning and literally providing "earthlight" (as opposed to moonlight on earth) and they will settle down in pressurized colonies deep underneath the surface. Old people will probably end up retiring on the moon - the 1/6 gee will be very, very easy on their brittle bones. Companies will form, jobs will open up - cold fusion will happen.
Man - you guys have no f*cking idea how mad I am to not be around for it. I wish more than anything I was born a few hundred years from now so I could be a part of it.
Originally posted by jets5ever@Jan 29 2004, 09:00 AM I am so freaking in to all of it. I am fascinated that there is a human presence (or better yet, human "footprints" so to speak) on another planet.
This low-earth orbit crap is just old hat. We need to get on the moon and start colonizing it and mining that m-f.
This administration sure has a record of colonizing!
BTW guys back when I was a kid I was facinated with the Apollo program, and I wish we never stopped going to the moon.
As far as colonizing the moon goes, you have to bear in mind that the single biggest physical factor of going there was weight. Until that barrier can be overcome colonizing the moon will be a pipe dream.
Originally posted by tailgators@Jan 29 2004, 10:36 AM As far as colonizing the moon goes, you have to bear in mind that the single biggest physical factor of going there was weight. Until that barrier can be overcome colonizing the moon will be a pipe dream.
Weight is a huge factor in virtually all of space-travel, but we do presently have the technology to get there...quite easily, in fact. Ditching the shuttle programs in favor of rockets is a start.
Colonies on the moon and mining are there whenever we want them - all we have to do is write the check.
The problem is, the people who write the checks are not the ones who will get the utility from the investment. Societies always need to expand their production curves outward and doing so requires many things, one of which is a decrease in present consumption and an increase in capital investment for the future.
It is very easy to find things to ***** about whenever the space program comes up. 'We're going to Mars and meanwhile my school has a leaky roof!" These are cheap rhetorical "gotcha!" points, but have little to do with the fact that mining the moon and colonizing it would be immeasurably profitable or the annoying fact that this kind of discretionary spending is not an either/or type of thing.
Originally posted by bitonti+Jan 29 2004, 10:41 AM--></span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (bitonti @ Jan 29 2004, 10:41 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin--tailgators@Jan 29 2004, 10:36 AM As far as colonizing the moon goes, you have to bear in mind that the single biggest physical factor of going there was weight. Until that barrier can be overcome colonizing the moon will be a pipe dream.
tail can you clarify :blink:
or as heinlien would write
"WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE?" [/b][/quote]
It's weight, gravity and propulsion. In order to break free of the earth's gravity the payload can't be too heavy otherwise the rocket will not have the propulsion necessary.
As an example look how the engineers at Grumman Air had to pair down the design of the Lunar Module to make it light enough. For instance thay had to take out seats because they were too heavy and they were forced to make the windows those little triangles because of the weight of the glass.
During the Apollo missions weight was so critical that Alan B. Shepard the Commander of Apollo 14 was fined because he stowed the head of a 5-iron golf club and a ball to the moon so he could hit a golf ball up there. If you don't remember the story he attached a 5-iron head to the handle of on to the grabbers and hit a golf ball. After he hit the ball he exclaimed that it went "MILES and MILES and MILES!!"
If our success on Mars and plans for going to the moon aren't exciting to you then I don't know what is. There is something so cool about exploration of the unknown. I mean, just seeing those high resolution pictures of the Martian surface goves me chills. The fact that we are capable of doing something like that makes proud to be an American. Seriously, who else can do that right now? For that matter, who else has the ability to to colonize the moon, RIGHT NOW...that's right us. The Apollo program, the space progam in general, has advanced science and technology like no other area in the world.
It's about time we clearly define a purpose and goal for our space program. Let's face it, the space program has been virtually dead for 30 years. Yeah the shuttle was a success, at least at first., but we were just going up there for the sake of going up there. Since satellites can be launched via stand alone rockets, shuttle missions were basically expensive trips to conduct lame high school experiments. We need to pump some life into the space program, set common goals, and unite this country behind the excitement of a space program like we once did.
What we need to do:
1) Complete the space station and install a full complement of crew.
2) Immediately begin plans for a shuttle replacement.
3) Continue to research and develop the Ion drive system, which appears to be our best chance at space propulsion.
4) Immediately begin designing plans for a permanent moon base. Once in position and established, ways to mine prescious elements such as helium-3 should be created. The moon base is pivotal. Any trip to Mars will require a moon base for success. It will be expensive but there is money to make on the moon sports fans.
5) stay on course for Mars. Expect setbacks and don't let them derail the plans.
6) Look to other countries for assistance. Let's face it, a trip to Mars is a trip for all mankind. We need to team up with the other technological giants and make this happen together. Let's face it, we have some of the smartest scientists in the world, but let's not limit ourselves to just that, let's hear from the best of the best around the world.
Originally posted by Section109Row15@Jan 29 2004, 02:09 PM Gun: The real question is would you be willing to pay higher taxes for this to happen?
A very good question 109. Being a man that hates taxes like the plague, I guess my simple answer would be no.
But in reality, in pursuit of a great space program, and only for that reason, yes. A cop out I know.
But the problem....as we all know.......is when they raise taxes, how much of it would ACTUALLY go towards its intended purpose.
I guess my point is I'd rather pay higher taxes to fund a program like that then some ridiculous pork barrell project to get a Rep. or Sen. reelected. But modern day congressional bills have become so ridiculous, so clouded with special interests on both sides of the aisle, I don't have the confidence in them to put the money to good use.
HA... when you said space elevator, all I could think of is the old Bugs Bunny cartoon with Marvin the Martian and some giant escalator going up into space... Don't know if there was even a cartoon like that, but thats what came to mind.
LONDON, England (AP) -- European scientists set out plans Tuesday for manned missions to Mars that aim to land astronauts on the Red Planet within 30 years.
Like President Bush's proposed mission to Mars, the outline put forward by the European Space Agency involves a "stepping stone" approach that includes robotic missions and a manned trip to the moon first.
"We need to go back to the moon before we go to Mars. We need to walk before we run," Dr. Franco Ongaro, who heads the ESA's Aurora program for long-term exploration of the solar system, said at a meeting of Aurora scientists in London.
"These are our stones. They will pave the way for our human explorers."
The ESA has planned two flagship missions to Mars -- ExoMars would land a rover on the planet in 2009, and Mars Sample Return would bring back a sample of the Martian surface in 2011-2014.
Other test missions will include an unmanned version of the flight that would eventually carry astronauts to Mars to demonstrate aerobraking, solar electric propulsion and soft landing technologies.
A human mission to the moon, proposed for 2024, would demonstrate key life-support and habitation technologies, as well as aspects of crew performance and adaptation to long-distance space flight.
The program is expected to cost $1.13 billion over the next five years.
Colin Pillinger, the British scientist behind the recent ill-fated Beagle 2 expedition, said it was important to determine whether life existed on Mars before pressing ahead with a manned mission.
"Would it be right for us to tamper with the ecology on another body?" he asked. "My opinion is that it probably wouldn't."
The ExoMars rover would use solar arrays to generate electricity and travel several miles across the surface of Mars.
It would have onboard software enabling it to operate autonomously and, like Beagle 2, a set of scientific instruments designed to search for signs of past or present life.
Mars Sample Return would be a more complex mission requiring five spacecraft -- an interplanetary transfer stage, a Mars orbiter, a descent module, an ascent module and an Earth re-entry vehicle.
The module would contain a drill to collect soil samples and was expected to send back around a pound of Martian soil.
Scientists hope the expedition has a better outcome than the Beagle 2 trip. The British built lander, due to land on Mars on Christmas Day, has not been heard from since it separated from the ESA's mother ship, Mars Express, in mid-December, despite several efforts to contact it.
Mars Express itself has functioned as intended, orbiting the planet. ESA scientists said last month it found the most direct evidence yet of water in the form of ice on Mars, detecting molecules vaporizing from the Red Planet's south pole.
By contrast, NASA's twin rovers are reaching out to scoop and analyze the Martian surface some 6,600 miles apart, both using their robotic arms as intended following a software glitch.
Bush last month sought to chart a new course for NASA, focusing on a return to the moon by 2020 in preparation for manned missions to Mars and beyond.
Originally posted by The Gun Of Bavaria@Feb 5 2004, 12:50 AM Found this article amusing. Apparently the Europeans We? Who's we? Last time I checked there weren't any Europeans on the Apollo missions.
Guns...Do you know what country the people who designed the rockets for our Apollo space program were from?
Originally posted by tailgators+Feb 5 2004, 09:55 AM--></span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (tailgators @ Feb 5 2004, 09:55 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin--The Gun Of Bavaria@Feb 5 2004, 12:50 AM Found this article amusing. Apparently the Europeans We? Who's we? Last time I checked there weren't any Europeans on the Apollo missions.
Guns...Do you know what country the people who designed the rockets for our Apollo space program were from? [/b][/quote]
Naturalized American citizens who were once Nazis. :lol: That reminds me of my favorite quote from the movie "The Right Stuff"
Von Braun: "Our Germans are better than their Germans" (Referring to the Soviets)
They might have been European, but Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong weren't speaking German, French, or Italian up there.