Sciencescience

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 02:52 PM

As tempting and exciting as this sounds, I'm not sure we are ready for this

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2017/02/15/nasa-heeding-trump-considers-adding-astronauts-to-a-practice-moon-mission/?utm_term=.0e3a816e4e40

NASA, heeding Trump, may add astronauts to a test flight moon mission

President Trump has indicated that he wants to make a splash in space. During his transition, he spoke with historian Douglas Brinkley about John F. Kennedy's famous 1961 vow to go to the moon before the decade was out. Now Trump and his aides may do something very similar: demand that NASA send astronauts to orbit the moon before the end of Trump's first term — a move that one Trump adviser said would be a clear signal to the Chinese that the U.S. intends to retain dominance in space.

NASA already has a plan to launch its new, jumbo Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with an Orion capsule on top in late 2018, a mission known as EM-1. No one would be aboard. The capsule would orbit the moon and return to Earth, splashing down in the ocean.

This is intended as the first test flight of SLS and part of the integration of the new rocket and new capsule. Significantly, the SLS and Orion are both still under construction.

According to current plans, a crewed mission, EM-2, would not be launched until several years later under the NASA timeline — certainly not during Trump's current term. That crewed mission would also orbit the moon.

But on Wednesday, NASA's acting administrator, Robert Lightfoot, sent a letter to employees saying he'd instructed the top NASA official for human spaceflight, associate administrator William Gerstenmaier, to explore the feasibility of adding astronauts to the EM-1 flight.

Lightfoot wrote: “I know the challenges associated with such a proposition, like reviewing the technical feasibility, additional resources needed, and clearly the extra work would require a different launch date. That said, I also want to hear about the opportunities it could present to accelerate the effort of the first crewed flight and what it would take to accomplish that first step of pushing humans farther into space.”

This is, by NASA standards, a bombshell announcement, because major missions involving new hardware and astronauts are typically planned many years in advance. Rush jobs are not NASA's way.

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Reply As tempting and exciting as this sounds, I'm not sure we are ready for this (Original post)
Currentsitguy Feb 15 OP
Juan Rico Feb 15 #1
Currentsitguy Feb 15 #2
batcat Feb 15 #3
Currentsitguy Feb 15 #4
batcat Feb 15 #6
rampartb Feb 15 #5
Juan Rico Feb 15 #12
Currentsitguy Feb 15 #13
oflguy Feb 15 #7
Currentsitguy Feb 15 #8
oflguy Feb 15 #9
oflguy Feb 15 #10
Currentsitguy Feb 15 #11
Aquila Feb 15 #14
marmot84 Feb 16 #15

Response to Currentsitguy (Original post)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 02:55 PM

1. I love it!

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Response to Juan Rico (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 02:57 PM

2. Be careful Juan

We haven't even orbited this yet. I'd hate to see another Apollo 1 due to a rush jobs and cut corners.

That being said we need to back in Space in a big, bad, and ugly way.

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Response to Currentsitguy (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 03:06 PM

3. Manned missions to the moon might help make America great again. ...

In my opinion this nation peaked back in the 1960s when we first landed on the moon. At that time I suspected we would be on Mars today. Those were the days when we thought everything was possible.

We would have been a lot better off spending money on space exploration than wasting it on useless wars and trying to impose our system of government on nations who have no interest in it.

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Response to batcat (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 03:13 PM

4. IMHO what we did spend was wasted

We simply walked away from an interplanetary capacity and traded it in for what amounts to an airborn pickup truck permanently stuck in low Earth Orbit, looking down at where we came from, instead of up at where we should be headed.

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Response to Currentsitguy (Reply #4)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 04:08 PM

6. If we establish a base on the moon we would learn at lot about how to survive in an alien ...

environment plus we could launch a rescue mission in time to save a colony in trouble.

Plus there may be significant value in going to the moon.

Sustainable Energy
Mining the Moon
Lab experiments suggest that future fusion reactors could use helium-3 gathered from the moon.


by Mark Williams Pontin August 23, 2007

At the 21st century’s start, few would have predicted that by 2007, a second race for the moon would be under way. Yet the signs are that this is now the case. Furthermore, in today’s moon race, unlike the one that took place between the United States and the U.S.S.R. in the 1960s, a full roster of 21st-century global powers, including China and India, are competing.

Hot gases: Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Fusion Technology Institute are testing this fusion reactor, shown with a view of the grid in which interial electrostatic confinement takes place.
Even more surprising is that one reason for much of the interest appears to be plans to mine helium-3–purportedly an ideal fuel for fusion reactors but almost unavailable on Earth–from the moon’s surface. NASA’s Vision for Space Exploration has U.S. astronauts scheduled to be back on the moon in 2020 and permanently staffing a base there by 2024. While the U.S. space agency has neither announced nor denied any desire to mine helium-3, it has nevertheless placed advocates of mining He3 in influential positions. For its part, Russia claims that the aim of any lunar program of its own–for what it’s worth, the rocket corporation Energia recently started blustering, Soviet-style, that it will build a permanent moon base by 2015-2020–will be extracting He3.

The Chinese, too, apparently believe that helium-3 from the moon can enable fusion plants on Earth. This fall, the People’s Republic expects to orbit a satellite around the moon and then land an unmanned vehicle there in 2011.

Nor does India intend to be left out. (See “India’s Space Ambitions Soar.”) This past spring, its president, A.P.J. Kalam, and its prime minister, Manmohan Singh, made major speeches asserting that, besides constructing giant solar collectors in orbit and on the moon, the world’s largest democracy likewise intends to mine He3 from the lunar surface. India’s probe, Chandrayaan-1, will take off next year, and ISRO, the Indian Space Research Organization, is talking about sending Chandrayaan-2, a surface rover, in 2010 or 2011. Simultaneously, Japan and Germany are also making noises about launching their own moon missions at around that time, and talking up the possibility of mining He3 and bringing it back to fuel fusion-based nuclear reactors on Earth.
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/408558/mining-the-moon/

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Response to Currentsitguy (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 04:06 PM

5. i agree with this in every point

we need to succeed at doing this. as soon as possible, but no apollo 13.

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Response to Currentsitguy (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 06:33 PM

12. Oh, I'm not saying we shouldn't keep safety in mind....but if (and only if) it's safe to do so, I'd

love to see us get people past low orbit sooner rather than later.

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Response to Juan Rico (Reply #12)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 07:09 PM

13. You an me too.

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Response to Currentsitguy (Original post)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 05:15 PM

7. I don't think it is a good idea

The NASA scientists of 1961 were quite a different breed than the Global Warming wussies of today. NASA is infested with these political hacks who take a projected outcome and build a computer model around it to "prove" their goal as opposed to creating a model and testing it for results.

I sure wouldn't put my life in their contrived agenda-driven hands.

Heck, just recently one of their top global warming people at the United Nations admitted their ultimate goal is to destroy capitalism.

We think these people are capable of the same feats accomplished by their predecessors?

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Response to oflguy (Reply #7)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 05:21 PM

8. The capsule originally planned to go around the moon

Currently doesn't even have a complete life support system. This would have to be retrofitted in. What president Trump is forgetting is before Apollo 8 we spent several missions in Earth Orbit to shakedown the Apollo capsule, not to mention Mercury and Gemini beforehand.

I have no problem with a manned launch. In fact I desire it. Lets first relearn to walk before we try running. The moon is a quarter million miles away, one way. If something goes wrong on an untested spacecraft, there is very little we can do.

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Response to Currentsitguy (Reply #8)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 05:27 PM

9. Trump is giving current NASA pointy-headed liberals way too much credit

First he would have to drain the swamp and replace many of the incompetent ones there.

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Response to oflguy (Reply #10)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 05:42 PM

11. LOL! How true

It's just the leadership that has to go. Plenty of good, solid Engineers and the like there. It's just that they have been the redheaded stepchildren of NASA for some time now and have taken a backseat to the environmental and "outreach" wings of the department.

What really needs to happen is a reallocation of the funding priorities.

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Response to Currentsitguy (Original post)

Wed Feb 15, 2017, 10:52 PM

14. A fun read



Wagging the MoonDoggie or why the US never went to the Moon
October 2009, David McGowan (RIP)

...I found a new source of inspiration, however, when my wife e-mailed me the recent story about the fake Dutch Moon rock, which I and many others found quite amusing, and which also reminded me that I had a lot of other bits and pieces of information concerning the Apollo project that I had collected over the nine years that have passed since I first wrote about the alleged Moon landings. After taking that first look, back in 2000, I was pretty well convinced that the landings were, in fact, faked, but it was perfectly obvious that the rather short, mostly tongue-in-cheek post that I put up back in July of 2000 was not going to convince anyone else of that.

So I contemplated taking a more comprehensive look at the Apollo program. Toward that end, I pulled up my original Apollo post along with various other bits and pieces scattered throughout past newsletters, threw in all the newer material that had never made it onto my website, and then combed the Internet for additional information. In doing so, I realized that a far better case could be made than what I had previously offered to readers...



...I am very well aware, by the way, that there are many, many people out there – even many of the people who have seen through other tall tales told by our government – who think that Moon hoax theorists are complete kooks. And a whole lot of coordinated effort has gone into casting them as such. That makes wading into the Moon hoax debate a potentially dangerous affair...

...It has been my experience that the vast majority of the people who truly believe in the Moon landings know virtually nothing about the alleged missions. And when confronted with some of the more implausible aspects of those alleged missions, the most frequently offered argument is the one that every ‘conspiracy theorist’ has heard at least a thousand times: “That can’t possibly be true because there is no way that a lie that big could have been covered up all this time … too many people would have known about it … yadda, yadda, yadda.”...snip

Full 13 part series Wagging the MoonDoggie: https://archive.is/4CQe3#selection-453.0-453.541

Moon landing tapes got erased, NASA admits

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-nasa-tapes-idUSTRE56F5MK20090720




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Response to Currentsitguy (Original post)

Thu Feb 16, 2017, 12:46 AM

15. Since we currently have no rocket that can put a human in orbit

and the program to do that appears to be plagued with problems I'm not going to hold my breath. I'd be happy to see it happen but Orion where are you? I thought we were suppose to have had a manned test flight by now.

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