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The Oppressed Dream!

Posted by: rpspeck - Tue Apr 03, 2007 5:37 pm
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The Oppressed Dream! 

Do You Want to Go Into Space?
No 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Yes - to Orbit 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Yes - to the Moon 50%  50%  [ 4 ]
Yes - to MARS 25%  25%  [ 2 ]
Yes - to the Stars! 25%  25%  [ 2 ]
Total votes : 8

The Oppressed Dream! 
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Post The Oppressed Dream!   Posted on: Tue Apr 03, 2007 5:37 pm
More than 3000 people have faced the dangers and hardships of Mount Everest and made it to the top. At present no one has shown a willingness to face comparable dangers for private flight into space and achieve this goal!

More than one hundred auto racing teams (IRL, Formula 1, and NASCAR Cup) spend more money EACH YEAR than would be required to buy a flight to orbit, or around the Moon (on a Russian Dnepr launch vehicle – possibly soon with SpaceX).

Is watching cars grind tires into powdered rubber and fill the air with noise and fumes really that much fun? No – just ask your wife.

The “Dreamâ€


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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 03, 2007 5:53 pm
Yes, I want to go to the Moon, as can be seen in my avatar. But I don't want to go in a minimal, uncomfortable, adventure sport kind of way. I want to go in the first class luxury kind of way depicted in the movie 2001, a Space Odyssey.


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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 03, 2007 6:22 pm
I have traveled coach and I have travel first class. (I have also walked with a lot of gear on my back.) For me getting there is more important that a few days of comfort. I find sleeping in a tent far more comfortable than coach air travel!!!

If your one chance to walk on the Moon in your lifetime required putting up with conditions only modestly better than coach air flight, would you turn down the opportunity?


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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 03, 2007 6:26 pm
Quote:
If your one chance to walk on the Moon in your lifetime required putting up with conditions only modestly better than coach air flight, would you turn down the opportunity?


Is that a question ? :P I think few will turn down that opportunity over here..

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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 03, 2007 8:23 pm
When I say first class luxury I am exaggerating. I expect the cushiest lunar flights to be significantly cruder than coach airline flights. But I do not want an extreme sport type flight, where the only toilet facility is a diaper, where the chance of dying is pretty high, where the training requirement is a year long, and so on. I want to be able to prepare for the flight in a few weeks or so, have some kind of space toilet better than little plastic bags, and have at least a 99% chance of making it back alive.

For example, I once was offered the chance to fly the Atlantic in a small plane. This is a seriously dangerous and somewhat uncomfortable endeavor, but I was ready, willing and able to do it. Unfortunately it didn’t happen. But I have no desire to row a boat across the Atlantic. That is just crazy!

Unfortunately I do not agree that developing a lightweight space craft is easier than developing a good video game. If it were there would now be more lightweight space craft in existance than good video games


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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 03, 2007 11:32 pm
I was thinking about this when watching a documentry on apollo 16 I think it was, great footage. Yes I'd do pretty much whatever it takes to get to the moon for a day or two or three, I can't imagine any kind of discomfort that would make walking on the moon not worth it.


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Post    Posted on: Wed Apr 04, 2007 12:47 am
campbelp2002 wrote:
For example, I once was offered the chance to fly the Atlantic in a small plane. This is a seriously dangerous and somewhat uncomfortable endeavor, but I was ready, willing and able to do it. Unfortunately it didn’t happen.


That’s impressive! I never had that chance, but I know something about what it entails. (It usually includes finding the one fiord in Greenland which leads to an airfield, often in poor weather and always with no alternate airport. GPS didn’t exist a few decades ago.)

I believe that an ultralight trip to land on the Moon will at least marginally meet your criteria. They are also close to my personal criteria.

The first human landing on Mars is another issue. It won’t literally match rowing across the Atlantic, but will be easier in some ways and harder in others (including the 1000 day duration). It will closely resemble 1900s polar expeditions, like Shackleton’s: as planned if things go well, or his actual voyage if too many things go wrong. I am certain that there are adventurers willing to undertake this and have met two of them.

campbelp2002 wrote:
Unfortunately I do not agree that developing a lightweight space craft is easier than developing a good video game. If it were there would now be more lightweight space craft in existence than good video games.


Here I don’t agree at all! Once, creating a salable video game was relatively easy: now development is budgeted at tens of millions of dollars. The video game market is about 100 times larger $$ than the US space launch industry. And that is not going to change, so comparatively few spacecraft will be designed.

A spacecraft and reentry vehicle (all that one needs when using “freight serviceâ€


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Post A Million to one Cost Error!   Posted on: Wed Apr 04, 2007 2:05 am
Actually even I am not proposing a $10 spacecraft! That was supposed to be $ 10 Million, development cost. After producing the 10 unit pilot run for testing, production cost should fall below $4 Million each. Add this to a $12 Million Dnepr launch and visit the Moon.


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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 10, 2007 2:57 pm
I think that rpspeck's numbers are feasible, i.e. that for the costs he is projecting, a probability of success similar to a modern Everest expedition is achievable.

http://www.americanalpineclub.org/pdfs/ ... AAJ_03.pdf

...this translates to a success rate between 25 and 50% and a fatality rate in the 2-5% range. This is all subject to interpretation, of course; the statistics in the Everest article are given both for individual climbers and for expeditions, neither of which is really an applicable model for rp's ultralight lunar mission.

Anyway, for 3000 successful trips, that means something like 5000 failed ones and perhaps 8-12 body bags... again the model isn't accurate since failure in translunar insertion or some similar portion of the envelope almost certainly carries a much higher fatality risk than a problem at the summit departure camp in a mountaineering expedition.

The question is, are people willing to take such a risk? Hard to say for sure. If rp can get his contraption ready and if somebody successfully makes use of it to actually land on and return from the lunar surface, I'll bet he'd get his share of takers.

To me it wouldn't be worth the risk of not getting where I was going if I had spent that much money on the project, especially if it was a consequence of an engineering decision whose motivating intent was simply to save money. I've always been a big-margin designer whom would rather do the harder thing in order to mitigate the possibility of failure.

But that's just me. Your thrillseeking mileage may vary.


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Post Star Flight   Posted on: Mon Apr 16, 2007 8:54 pm
I would like to talk about “Star Travelâ€


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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 17, 2007 4:41 am
I'm definitely not a Nuclear physicist, but I've been following the 'Polywell' type electrostatic confinement fusion reactor, being developed by Dr Robert Bussard & EMC2. Instead of using electrostatic repeller plates, this confines electrons in a quasi-spherical magnetic field to produce a high negative potential in the centre, which attracts the positive fuel ions.

My limited understanding is that such a device it does not require tight ion focussing because the ions that miss or have glancing collisions are recirculated an average of 1000 times in the field. In their low energy, high density phase at the outer edges, they are Maxwellianized, then head back in for another try. Also, one of the possible reactions p-B11, produces no neutrons, just high energy alphas, which makes direct electrical conversion at high efficiency, likely.

A space power plant using this technology would only be a few metres in diameter, and not hugely expensive in large scale production. I can definitely see personal SSTO & interplanetary spacecraft, in the not so distant future. From there an interstellar attempt could be made using 'off the shelf' engines in stages.


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Post    Posted on: Tue Apr 17, 2007 2:37 pm
Dr. Bussard’s work was what I was referring to above. The low cross section for nuclear fusion (with a small nucleus being 100,000 times smaller diameter than an atom = 10 exp -10 smaller cross sectional area), requires both high densities and long interaction lengths for significant reaction. Nearly one meter of target is required at solid density (electron interactions excluded). One thousand passes through a modest size zone still requires a considerable density. What Bussard calls “Maxwellianizedâ€


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Post    Posted on: Thu Apr 26, 2007 8:11 am
Hello, rpspeck,

I just this moment like you was wondering about what you mentioned in your initial post - people are interested in adventures like mountain climbing, skiing the poles and much more but no in going to space although it in principle is a similar adventure that might be more exciting because of the surroundings in space.

What about the idea that the reason might be that climbing, skiing, rowing and the like provide the experience of the powers, fitness and capabilities of the adventurers' own bodies? Does the knowledge or consciousness that machines carry the adventurer into space disappoint or frustrate adventurere like climbers etc.?

If so what about incoroporating the opportunity to apply or use powers and capabilities of the human body into spaceflight? Might that be possible somehow?

For example the lunar lander you are developing with your team for the Lunar Lander Challenge - in principle it provides a great experience by landing the adventurer exposed to free space from an altitude of 100 km or more. Would it be possible - while keeping a safety adventurers expect - to provide the opportunity to control orientation etc. of the lander by the capabilities and powers of the human body? Might that be interesting for landing on slight slopes of hills? Earthian hills as well as lunar hills? It could start with earthian hills and later be extended to mountains. Next it could be extended to the Moon. By the earthian adventures using the lunar lander capital could be gathered required to extend the adventures to the Moon.

What about this?



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)


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