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Hasty Shuttle Launch and Nuclear War

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posted on Jul, 29 2005 @ 06:49 AM
NASA's in a mess. What's the deal with pushing the shuttle launch?

Why, after such a horrible accident, are we rushing to force a forty-year-old tin vessel back into space? We don't even hold our automobiles up to the feet. What are we expecting to gain from this endeaver?

Has the thought of 'black project' come into the minds of other ATSers? Perhaps the mission is well on track, not to be swayed by some 'technical' atrosities (no matter how tragic). We are already a week behind schedule.

(Forgive me if this has been brought up, or if I'm 'way off base' here. Just trying to live up to the 'conspiracy stategist' thinking that's so common on this site.)

Anyway, I was thinking. Why put so much time and $$ into an 'extracurricular' program when our resources and funds are apparently tied up in war? So, I started 'googling'. This is what I found.

The 'Black Budget' includes funds that are set aside to finance a six-month--long nuclear war, and still have enough to fight the next round (with, or without the assistance from humans). The strategy calls for computers to manage the conflict, if humans are not available. The computers will orchestrate space satellites and nuclear weapons, globally. I believe the program is part of 'Milstar Satellites".

I know that we've been 'piggy backing' on the Russians since our last tragedy; however, what to do w/our 'spy' or 'war' equipment when relying on a neighbor for the carpool lane? Certainly, we'd want to tend to such matters privately?


"Part of the program is the Defense Communications Agency's Island Sun, a project to create mobile ground terminals in the form of lead-lined trucks, enabling generals to dodge Soviet nuclear attacks as they speed down the nation's interstate highways."

I'm still researching, and have thrown this post together (forgive me if it isn't well-manicured).

posted on Jul, 29 2005 @ 07:31 AM
Well, 2.5 years doesn't seem to hasty to me; government red tape and NASA's administrative swamp is the problem here.
Consider this perspective regarding shuttles and the military:

"NASA has spent 2.5 years and an estimated $14B maintaining the overall Shuttle program while trying to 'fix' a backlog of faults.

And now despite spending billions in federal space funding we are right back where we started, with another Shuttle crew having narrowly escaped another shower of foam fragments. Several of these fragments even came off in almost exactly the same place as that which doomed Columbia.

Today, the dwindling army of Shuttle cheerleaders are talking about yet more studies, yet more safety upgrades, yet more money and time dumped into this gaping black hole. We should ignore them.

There simply is no modification or upgrade that can make the Shuttle system acceptably safe from debris strikes. The original design decision to place a fragile heatshield alongside a foam-covered cryogenic tank and fly them at supersonic speeds was wrong. The whole history of aerospace craft tells us that this kind of basic design error can never be fixed by retrospective band-aid modifications.

And why bother? The only thing we can get in return for the $25-30B now budgeted for Shuttle operations between now and 2010 is more heartache and more delays in the new space initiative. Every day that Shuttle cancellation is put off, another $15,000,000 is wasted and the return of humans to the moon is delayed by another day.

The only reason left to fly the Shuttle is to finish the International Space Station. But simple arithmetic tells you that it is not capable of doing this task. The original ISS assembly plans call for 28 more Shuttle missions before compulsory retirement on 30 September 2010. Even before the fiasco of RTF-2, Mike Griffin had stated that there will be only 16 to 20 more Shuttle missions. With the rumored 1-year delay imposed by making even more safety improvements, this number shrinks to 12-16.

There has been much talk of shifting some of the ISS assembly load to Progress, ATV, and HTV. But it is unlikely that the production rate of these vehicles and their launchers could be rapidly increased enough to carry the mass allocated to those ~14 cancelled Shuttle missions. In any case, none of these vehicles is capable of carrying major ISS components (or even the standard experiment rack).

It is thus inevitable that the "final" configuration of the ISS will lack many of the major elements now planned. Even after you omit the useless politically inspired hardware like the viewing cupola, there is still too much ISS hardware stacked up in warehouses. Either some lab modules or the solar panels needed to power them will have to be omitted from the "completed" ISS.

And after 30 September 2010, there is no possibility of supporting the station and its 6-person crew. If you didn't believe my back-of-the-envelope calculation two years ago, there is now an elaborate NASA study that comes to the same conclusion. Of course this is no accident; Shuttle and Station were designed as technical Siamese Twins so that each is totally dependent on the other.

Clearly, the ISS is only a planetary-wide public works project and can never become a working space laboratory. How can we possibly ask our astronauts to assume a %2 risk of death per flight for this idiotic project?

To put this number in perspective, the combat loss rate of the most dangerous American WWII aircraft (B-17) was only %1.61. The peacetime operations of the Space Shuttle are more dangerous than wartime missions against the most efficient enemy air force the USA has ever faced!

But the important comparison is in the loss rate of crews. On average, about 8 men from each 10-man B-17 crew survived the loss of their aircraft by parachuting or riding a crippled plane down to a belly landing. So the risk of death was only about %0.3 per mission.

But the Space Shuttle has no escape system, due to fundamental technological problems that apply to all winged spaceplanes. NASA has given up trying to design such a system because the task is impossible. There are very few scenarios in which crews could survive the loss of the vehicle.

So the ugly truth is that every time that NASA launches astronauts on the Shuttle, they face a risk of death that is SIX TIMES HIGHER than that of combat aircrews in the most dangerous aircraft in the most intense air war ever fought!

By approving the launch of another seven astronauts in a vehicle that he himself has called "fundamentally flawed", Mike Griffin has already waded into the same moral swamp that swallowed up the Japanese admirals and generals of 1944-45 who ordered pilots to fly suicide missions for a year after any rational hope of winning the Pacific War had vanished. He needs to turn around right now and wade back out again.

The right thing for those Japanese officials to do in July 1944 would have been to tell Emperor Hirohito: "We were wrong to start this war. Going on with it will only waste more money and kill more of our best and brightest youth for no purpose. We should stop fighting right now and take whatever deal the Allies will give us."

The right thing for Administrator Griffin to do in July 2005 would be to tell President Bush: "We were wrong to continue on with the Shuttle and the Station after the Cold War ended. Going on with them will only waste more money and kill more of our best and brightest youth for no purpose. We should stop manned launches until we have developed a spacecraft that is at least as safe as the B-17 was."

posted on Jul, 29 2005 @ 08:22 AM
I find your title and your narrative very intelligent and interesting. I don't think we are imminent for nuclear war, I do however think we could see a major terrorist event in the not too distant future.

I also would say that the goal of the terrorist is NOT to simply kill as many people as possible as they have missed many opportunities to do just that with efficiency.

Take the 7/7 bombings in London. The days before the bombings we had the largest pop concert Live8 with literally hundreds of thousands in Hyde Park. We also had the Olympic Bid announcement with Again tens of thousands watching the results on Large outdoor TV sets around the capital.

Why didn't the terrorist hit these events? Why did they instead opt to attack small pockets of people? With only a couple of days travel disruption and just over 50 dead?

I do however concur with your analysis of the Shuttle Launch. We are not being told the real reason for this launce or why it was so urgent they launch now. I do know that the window for a launch was closing but if there was even the slight opportunity that all was not well then we could have waited for another window.

Personally I think that the reason the shuttle launched was to put into place some sort of hardware into orbit that requires exact positioning, hence the need for the shuttle. If it was a standard self-guide sat then they could have launched it on an arian5.

I would also say that we are heading into uncharted waters when it comes to future events. There are so many possibilities that speculation is rife.

I would not worry too much about the future and enjoy the day as today because no one can say what tomorrow will be.

All the best,

NeoN HaZe

posted on Jul, 29 2005 @ 08:46 PM
Man SG, you have hit the nail on the head with this. I am wondering exactly as you are.

It's almost as if the iris of the US is focused on the shuttle when it seems to be one of the least important matters for Americans to be interested in. There are global changes happening and the American government is being fundamentally altered. Why did they force this issue? Even now, it's not sure that the ship is within truly safe margins for re-entry.

You are onto something here.

BTW, excellent replies also.

posted on Jul, 29 2005 @ 09:02 PM
It amazes me the lack of understanding of the Shuttle.

Challenger was a shock, but the problem fixed (we hope)

Columbia was a fluke I think, but should be accounted for if at all possible.

You have to understand that the design is over 30 years old but it is still the most complicated spacecraft that we know of.

It comes with Risk..this can not be designed away. Space travel is a VERY dangerous occupation and they astronauts know well the risks associated with it.

Why do we need it? Well I guess until the Saturn IV drawings are found, we are stuck with it. It would be far to expensive to design something like that today with all the regulations that NASA has to deal with. Heck the environmental alone are huge.

We need the shuttle until we have something better for heavy lift operations. We don't have a choice.

The best we can do is make it as safe as we reasonably can and continue. You will have no shortage of willing pilots.

Although I am not convinced that the ISS is a smart move.....

posted on Jul, 30 2005 @ 01:16 AM

Originally posted by Realist05
By approving the launch of another seven astronauts in a vehicle that he himself has called "fundamentally flawed", Mike Griffin has already waded into the same moral swamp that swallowed up the Japanese admirals and generals of 1944-45 who ordered pilots to fly suicide missions for a year after any rational hope of winning the Pacific War had vanished. He needs to turn around right now and wade back out again.

Difference between the Challenger and Columbia is the Challenger completed its task. Is the ISS so important that we'd send another suicide crew, strictly to check off another task on a 30-year old project? I suppose we'll find out next week. Perhaps the ISS is simply a cover for the real project? 'If so, your analogy is spot on'. This is what I'm afraid of.

posted on Jul, 30 2005 @ 01:24 AM
Seems to me it really was not rushed back into Orbit? And the since cancellation or grounding of future Shuttle launches kind-of shows that.

I worked with that foam in packaging of ElectroRent eleectronic test and measurement equipment and if it's anywhere near the same as the NASA's foam, I can see where air or vibration friction can make it break lose.

What they don't re-announce is that the main or center fuel tank was redesigned years ago to make it lighter so the Shuttle could house a heavier payload. Since then the trouble began.


posted on Jul, 30 2005 @ 08:15 AM
Columbia's first flight with Young and Crippen also experienced tile chipping from breakaway foam insulation, so tank redesign isn't at fault.

And yes, you can design things to be safe, you don't have a safe system with the orbiter latched to the side of the ET, which is the reason there are 14 dead astronauts.

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