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Spaceflight Entertainment and Hobbies / Re: Mars: Season Two
« Last post by Blackstar on Today at 01:09 PM »
Spoilers here, so if you don't want to be spoiled, skip along.

I know I was going to summarize the docu parts of episode 4, but I got lazy. So I'm only doing that now. They focused on a Russian Greenpeace activist who has been reporting on an anthrax outbreak in Siberia that killed a bunch of people as well as thousands of reindeer. The government came in and tried to cover it all up, destroying most photos and videos and burning everybody's cellphones. As the episode makes clear, the oil companies are developing Siberia, and the Russian government is a major shareholder in these companies, so if the companies want the information destroyed, the government complies. There was also some discussion about how disease outbreaks are often covered up by governments for economic purposes, and this can result in the disease spreading even farther and faster. They mentioned the example of the SARS outbreak in China, where the government refused to reveal that it was happening and by the time they admitted it, SARS had spread beyond China's borders. The theme of these segments--echoed in the dramatic segments--is that there's a very blurry line between corporate and government interests, and the corporations will quickly cover up deaths and environmental destruction in the name of money.

I thought that these segments were really pretty good, in part because they're so surprising: you think that governments would want to stop the spread of deadly diseases as quickly as possible, but the reality is that other interests, primarily economic, prevent that from happening. The first instinct is to cover it up, which only allows the disease to spread further.
Here is my summary report on public hysteria sparked by observations of the launch in California.

Geat analysis! Must have taken ages to collect all the references and quotes.

But I've also got some constructive criticism: many slides of the report are written in capital letters, this is really hard to read - better use normal casing. Also, the presentation format is not optimal for this amount of text, I'd suggest formatting it as a structured document.
Since plants can grow at very low air pressures, inflatable transparent greenhouses are feasible. Presumably it would not be too hard to produce ones with locally manufactured glass or even plastics. I'm sure they could also be scaled up to 5m height, with a bit of thickening. Whether or not it's something you want to put in your colony architecture is up to you.

My personal view on a Mars colony is that there would be a lot of different organisations bringing their own things to the table, just like the ISS. So you wouldn't necessarily have one monolithic design for everything. NASA might decide a buried LED-let greenhouse is the way to go, and then a Japanese corporation decides to grow rice* in transparent greenhouses on the surface.

*amazingly radiation resistant
4 weeks elon time and all will be revealed. Patience! :)
I don't know what metric you are looking at, but the average cost of a Shuttle flight was $1.2B. Commercial Crew will cost far less.

Ahhh, the old game of ignoring development costs, missed opportunity costs, and anything else that lets you get the statistic you want.

I am a numbers guy, and I've looked into the numbers for both the Shuttle and Commercial Crew. I'm quite satisfied with my views.

Not that NASA cares about the cost - unless it's being measured in astronaut's lives.

This is actually related to the thread topic, since NASA doesn't control it's own fate. It works for the President and is funded by Congress. Why anyone thinks NASA can decide it's own fate is beyond me...  ;)

Quote from: Coastal Ron
See my previous statement, and add that Commercial Cargo & Crew programs were designed, in part, to create a commercial space capability, and to show that the private sector can start venturing out into space on their own.

How's *that* workin' out for ya?

Going slower than anyone wanted, but I think it's close to achieving what I hoped it would. Which is showing Congress and the U.S. public that NASA doesn't need to build its own spacecraft for accessing space. Commercial Crew will help justify the eventual cancellation of the Orion - not because they are direct replacements, but because they show that the American aerospace industry is capable of building NASA-certified HSF vehicles.

Quote from: Coastal Ron
Though I wish it could have been done without U.S. Government money, no one else around the world stepped forward to make it happen, so we'll all have to accept this transitionary process...  ;)

... oh, so close to enlightenment! Why was no-one stepping forward?

Money and ability. And I noticed you missed my dig about no one else from outside of the U.S. stepping forward. I don't mind criticizing my own government for their misdeeds, but I don't think others should be complaining about our lack of progress - no one is holding anyone else back from doing this hard stuff...   ::)

As to why no one else has stepped forward, it's very clear. No one, other than Elon Musk, has identified a specific need to send humans into space. The U.S. Government is paying for Commercial Crew because they are committed to the ISS (it's a U.S. National Laboratory), but otherwise the Orion program shows we don't have a clear goal for HSF right now.

We are in kind of an interregnum right now with regards to U.S. space goals, which is the perfect time to be proving what NASA should and should not do next. And it's very clear right now that the private sector is far more advanced regarding rocketry, and I think we are very close in showing that the private sector can be capable regarding spacecraft.

That should lay the foundation for the future, when we are post-Orion & SLS and Congress identifies a new need for sending government employees into space. At that point the private sector will be the natural source for providing the transportation, and Congress won't be able to justify having NASA build a new rocket and spaceship - again.

My $0.02

I think it has been a fever since 1950s that man will visit Mars. Now Elon has been involved in sending 100 people at a time without a return ticket there.

I figure a moonlike mission to Mars with a double speed craft ought to do it.
ISS Section / Re: VKD-45a Russian Spacewalk (Dec 11th, 2018)
« Last post by jacqmans on Today at 12:52 PM »
ISS Section / Re: VKD-45a Russian Spacewalk (Dec 11th, 2018)
« Last post by jacqmans on Today at 12:51 PM »

Preparations continue for our final (historic!) launch 8 on January 7th.  Final 2 (of 10) sats just left the factory (we track them by Iridium IoT) for the base; 6 of 10 are already mated.  Everything needed is there - just need to put it all together for a launch in 24 days!
How is this relevant to this thread? Doesn't seem to be related to BFR at all?

I think it means we're on page 60 of speculations and we're now collectively beating our heads into the wall at this point.

Or just hungry. 
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