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Problems with NASA's Return to the Moon Plan

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posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 10:55 AM
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A disturbing article about the state of the VSE

excerpts-



This past week has given me confirmation of something that has been a growing dread and suspicion by many of us in the space community regarding our latest return to the Moon effort. The Vision for Space Exploration (VSE) is being suffocated. It is literally having the life choked out of it.





The vision is simple, a prosperous world of 9.5 billion people in the year 2050 and in 2100. This world will have a large middle class in India, China, Europe, Japan, as well as the United States. The people of the rest of the world have a legitimate right to the same standard of living that we enjoy here in the U.S. today. However, it is clear that the resources of our little planet are inadequate to provide this level of civilization. A few years ago the World Wildlife Federation put out a press release that our global civilization would need the equivalent of two more Earths in order to provide for all of the people that will be alive in the year 2050. In fact we have thousands of worlds in our solar system that are worth untold trillions of dollars that can be developed to provide these resources for our use here on the Earth.





In the book "Guns, Germs, & Steel", the author, Jared Diamond developed the theory that all civilizations are ultimately limited by the resources at their command. This is what led to cannibalism in the pacific islands, the lack of metal technology in New Guinea, Australia, and South America, and conversely the plentiful nature of these resources gave western civilization its head start leading to the current world system. It is my feeling that a prosperous world that is far above our level of civilization in the year 2100 is both a desirable state and an amazing legacy for America to bequeath to our fellow planetary citizens. This is also a vision that will connect with the American people.





Since our victory in the cold war our dreams have been small and we as a people have done nothing but fight each other. It is time for that to end, it is time for us to rise above our differences, and space is the place for that to happen.


Once again, we see a plan for space exploration and development dying the "death of a thousand cuts" because apparently not enough people comprehend the value of such an endeavor, or care.

How do you feel about this?




posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:12 AM
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theres only 8 planets in our solar system (we miss you pluto) not thousands like the article claims.

the resources in the ground are finite but we have sun/wind/wave power in potentially unlimited amounts aswell as nuclear energy.

Global warming is a bigger threat short term than running out of resources. I agree the solar system first the moon then mars will become humans extended neighbourhood- getting to another star system is a bit trickier but can be done.

the goal of nasa/esa is to get to mars by 2050 if we havnt nuked ourselves we'll definitley get there by 2100

[edit on 11-12-2007 by yeti101]



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:19 AM
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Did you meant Galaxy. Yes, new planets found all the time. Trouble is, people are still thinking like we're living on a planet that isn't already inhabited by off worlders. Who says we aren't the planet that was colonized from another earth?

??



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:29 AM
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theres only 8 planets in our solar system (we miss you pluto) not thousands like the article claims.


The author used the word "worlds". In the context of the piece, even small nickel-iron asteroids would qualify as well as the moons throughout the system.



we have sun/wind/wave power in potentially unlimited amounts aswell as nuclear energy.


The amount of solar power available just in low Earth orbit is even greater.
Nuclear power generation off the Earth makes even greater sense in many respects. It's by-products are easier to dispose of, and any offending radiation is swept out of the system by the solar wind.



Global warming is a bigger threat short term than running out of resources.


And can also be addressed by space applications on an even larger scale, in a shorter time frame.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:30 AM
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i agree in general not enough is spent on space exploration or developing the technology we need. but what can you do? bush is spending $2 billion a week in iraq its the policy of the gvt that needs changed



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:40 AM
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reply to post by yeti101
 


While I agree that a large amount is being spent in Iraq, I am not sure these figures are correct. Even factoring in fraud and waste, there seems to be a very large amount that is just unaccounted for.

Could some of this money be going into black projects? Where better than an unpopular war to hide money being poured into something else? The detractors of the war will not question where it went, simply using it as fodder for their own agenda to end the war, and the "untidiness" of the war will make tracing it all but impossible, especially when any inquiries can be met with invoking the National Security card.

Just what are the powers that be up to, and why? There is almost a feeling that the war has been prolonged to give more time to siphon off more funds, despite the fact that supporting the war is bound to cost the political careers of some involved.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:45 AM
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NGC2736, well where ever its going its not into nasa. USA has huge defence spending keeping all the bases round the world. Maybe if they cut back on those it would give more money for scientists.

But does the gvt or people of the USA want that?

[edit on 11-12-2007 by yeti101]



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:59 AM
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I had always thought that NASA, while technically a civilian affair, was largely controlled by the military. Since factions like the Air Force are getting huge cuts of these unaccounted for billions, why might not NASA be benefiting, only in secret?

I know they keep delaying the launch of the shuttle, but they have no trouble launching rockets practically every day from various launch sites around the world. I'd look for a connection between the military factions NASA is involved with and the money that keeps disappearing in Iraq.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 12:06 PM
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Originally posted by yeti101
theres only 8 planets in our solar system (we miss you pluto) not thousands like the article claims.

the resources in the ground are finite but we have sun/wind/wave power in potentially unlimited amounts aswell as nuclear energy.

Global warming is a bigger threat short term than running out of resources. I agree the solar system first the moon then mars will become humans extended neighbourhood- getting to another star system is a bit trickier but can be done.

the goal of nasa/esa is to get to mars by 2050 if we havnt nuked ourselves we'll definitley get there by 2100

[edit on 11-12-2007 by yeti101]



wait what about this planet

www.gps.caltech.edu...

I think finding out all the rumors off humans not being allowed to go back to the moon would be an interesting one indeed



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 01:29 PM
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Here's my beef with this whole re-visiting the moon thing... Didn't we do it in 1969???
If so, the technology already exists and we should be able to put this thing together in a matter of months (Or at least in a year or two), not in 2020 as they are claiming.

Remember the claims that the computers that took us there the first time had less processing capacity than a calculator? Well, technology has advanced exponentially since then. You would figure that they could use the knowledge that we gained from the first missions, parlay that into the new technology and simply build a launch vehicle to get the job done. I mean, we launch the space shuttle every year. How much would it really cost to get us to the moon again?

I am very skeptical that we have ever been there and I believe that all of fanfare regarding "Returning" to the moon belies that very fact. Again, logic would seem to dictate that this should be a very simple operation for us in comparison to the feat accomplished in '69 through the early '70s. And would it really cost more than some of the other extravagent projects that NASA is currently undertaking? What are we waiting for?



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 02:15 PM
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kozmo, you have to remember the next moon mission wont just be for few hours on the surface. Theyre going to setup a permanent base. Much work needs to go into that



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 02:27 PM
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posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 02:34 PM
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What are we waiting for?

Just a little more courage?

Maybe a lot less fear?

Maybe Burt Rutan knows...

In this 20 minute talk, legendary aircraft designer Burt Rutan lambastes the US government-funded space program for stagnating: "Houston, we have a problem. We're entering a second generation of no progress." He calls for entrepreneurs to lead the next wave of space exploration, funding new crafts, new (manned) missions, and entirely new approaches to space exploration.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 02:40 PM
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Originally posted by kozmo
Here's my beef with this whole re-visiting the moon thing... Didn't we do it in 1969???
If so, the technology already exists and we should be able to put this thing together in a matter of months (Or at least in a year or two), not in 2020 as they are claiming.


As yeti just said, it's not just about getting to the moon again, it's about what to do when we get there.

The Saturn V rockets were enormous and only had to get three relatively puny modules to the moon and back. Transporting lunar base modules to be assembled on the moon would require a lot more thrust.

Granted, we have more powerful rockets now and can lift the entire space shuttle into orbit with rockets totaling about than half the size of the Saturn V. But to assemble a permanant base in the same number of trips as it takes to assemble a space station in orbit would be a tremendous task.

The endeavor of moving the modules from Columbia to the moon is a real challenger, not unlike pulling off the discovery of Atlantis. (Sorry.
)



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 03:43 PM
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hi really good sky at night episode about "the last man on the moon", at the end Eugene Cernan gives his view on the current space program very interesting viewing! www.bbc.co.uk...

[edit on 11-12-2007 by yeti101]



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 04:32 PM
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reply to post by yeti101
 


Good show. Thanks, yeti101!



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