Is There A Way To Use Asteroids And Comets For A Faster Space Travel?

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posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 07:41 AM
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I have often wonder why we do not use the relatively fast moving comets/asteroids to our advantages?

Say a big enough comet (a few dozen of miles) is supposed to pass by earth,say at a 10 lunar distance,speeding at 12miles/s.

If we could somehow intercept this comet/asteroid,and land on it when it is the closest to earth,then we could just sit back

and enjoy the ride while saving in fuel and other propellants....

If the final destination is lets say Saturn's moon Titan,then we just wait til the closest point to Saturn and jump off.

That is of course giving that the trajectory is not in a crash course with any of the celestial bodies....

What will be the difficulties of such an operation and can it be at all done?

Will it be cheaper or more expensive?

What will be needed for say protection against solar and cosmic radiations?

I would really like to hear what the ATS community think about this.......
edit on 17-2-2014 by wildapache because: (no reason given)
edit on 17-2-2014 by wildapache because: (no reason given)
edit on 2/17/2014 by semperfortis because: corrected all caps
edit on 17-2-2014 by wildapache because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 07:45 AM
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reply to post by wildapache
 


Getting back might be a bit difficult though as comets and asteroids don't have regular timetables like buses do...

Kindest respects

Rodinus



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 07:53 AM
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reply to post by Rodinus
 


Yeah,you are right,I guess I didn't think about the return...

But is the travel from earth possible tho?

The way i see it,it will take less than 3 months to reach Mars at say 12miles/sec and probably with enough fuel left for the trip back.

What about radiation level?Will being stationed on that comet/asteroid play any significant role?



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 07:58 AM
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reply to post by wildapache
 


I will leave the answers to those questions to the experts here... I am sure Phage will be along shortly to share some of his knowledge with you.

Kindest respects

Rodinus

edit on 17/2/14 by Rodinus because: Phrase taken out



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 08:01 AM
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reply to post by wildapache
 


Consider: one needs to not only plot an intercept trajectory, but avoid cometary ejecta, and be going the same speed as the object to land on it in the first place.

If you can already get that "fast" just to land on the object, then, what's the point in landing on the object to get that "fast" if you can already go that "fast"?

Additionally, a number of longer ranged probes aren't in it for the final destination, but, for the journey itself, in leapfrogging from one gravity well to another, planet to planet in taking advantage of what sights can be seen for more science to be had.

All in all, getting any one place in space is pretty complicated in timing velocities against other velocities, like throwing a baseball out of one moving car to be caught by someone else in another moving car on the complete opposite side of the planet where neither cars, pitcher, or catcher can move, or deviate from their designated speeds and positions.

It's pretty amazing we can even predictably make it to such tiny objects like some of the moons of Jupiter and Saturn.



edit on 2/17/2014 by AliceBleachWhite because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 08:08 AM
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reply to post by AliceBleachWhite
 


Well now that you put it this way,lol(with the moving cars and all
) i can picture how difficult it will be...

To be honest I wasn't thinking much about probes and unmanned crafts,but rather a manned mission for example,hence my worries about radiation.....

Thanks for explaining tho



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 08:30 AM
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AliceBleachWhite
reply to post by wildapache
 


If you can already get that "fast" just to land on the object, then, what's the point in landing on the object to get that "fast" if you can already go that "fast"?



I can think of a few reasons,,,you could use the raw resources from it for supplies, fuel, water..ect,,,& be shielded from radiation if you could somehow make an underground shelter in it,,,,,some people have theorized that the Moon was used for that very propose,, & when an Apollo spacecraft was crashed into it , the Moon rang like a bell ,,like it was hallow...



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 08:36 AM
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reply to post by wildapache
 


Also consider that our spacecraft basically already just coast through space anyway (which is what they would do on the asteroid). As Alice mentioned above, if you already need to be moving as fast as the asteroid to catch it, the asteroid itself would not offer any speed advantage.

Plus, it would not offer any fuel savings (at least not the way our chemical-fueled rockets work now). Almost all of the fuel ever used by a chemical-fueled spacecraft (say, for example, the probes sent to Mars) is used up just leaving Earth. The spacecraft then coast without any engine thrust for 99% of the trip, except for the occasional minor engine burn for course corrections. So our Mars spacecraft toady coasts to Mars -- the speed and trajectory of the craft were all set forth by the launch procedure.

So, If we spend all of that fuel to match the speed of the asteroid, we may as well just keep coasting at that speed -- no additional fuel required.

Another thing to consider about a comet is that it is at its fastest when it is in the inner solar system. The closer an orbiting object is to the Sun, the faster that object goes. So as the comet you are potentially going to ride gets farther out in the solar system away from the Sun, it begins to slow down considerably.



Now, one idea science fiction writers and futurist have considered (and as 'Blowback' mentioned above) is hollowing out an asteroid to make a living space, strap engines to the asteroid, then use the asteroid itself as a spaceship. It is pre-built, and the rock could offer radiation and impact protection. However, thee would still be the problem of making powerful enough engines to move the asteroid and getting fuel there. Plus, as I said, today's chemical engines are not made for long term trusting, so it's not like you would zip around where you went, with on-demand hours and hours of rocket thrust.

To be able to zip around where we want, the engines would need to be something that we do not yet really have -- and that is an engine that can be turned on and off at will, and offer a powerful enough thrust (powerful enough to move the ateroid) for long terms (long enough to zip around where you want).
edit on 2/17/2014 by Soylent Green Is People because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 08:51 AM
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Blowback

AliceBleachWhite
reply to post by wildapache
 


If you can already get that "fast" just to land on the object, then, what's the point in landing on the object to get that "fast" if you can already go that "fast"?



I can think of a few reasons,,,you could use the raw resources from it for supplies, fuel, water..ect,,,& be shielded from radiation if you could somehow make an underground shelter in it,,,,,some people have theorized that the Moon was used for that very propose,, & when an Apollo spacecraft was crashed into it , the Moon rang like a bell ,,like it was hallow...

ABW makes a good point here:




If you can already get that "fast" just to land on the object, then, what's the point in landing on the object to get that "fast" if you can already go that "fast"?


If you are going to hollow out a celestial body though.... You wouldn't be so much hitching a ride, but making it into an interplanetary spacecraft. If the asteroid isn't going close to where you need it to, you would need enough energy to alter its course (trajectory). If the object is large enough to be useful for raw materials on a long journey, it would probably take quite a bit of force to change the path of the object. I don't believe it would be very practical in most cases.
edit on bu282014-02-17T08:52:01-06:0008America/ChicagoMon, 17 Feb 2014 08:52:01 -06008u14 by butcherguy because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 09:17 AM
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reply to post by wildapache
 


To land safely on a body that's travelling at 12 km/s relative to you, you first need to get up to that speed (more or less) so that the body doesn't crash into you at 12 km/s. And getting up to that speed would recuire just as much fuel as simply flying the spacecraft to its destination.
edit on 17-2-2014 by wildespace because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 09:19 AM
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Blowback

AliceBleachWhite
reply to post by wildapache
 


If you can already get that "fast" just to land on the object, then, what's the point in landing on the object to get that "fast" if you can already go that "fast"?



I can think of a few reasons,,,you could use the raw resources from it for supplies, fuel, water..ect,,,& be shielded from radiation if you could somehow make an underground shelter in it,,,,,some people have theorized that the Moon was used for that very propose,, & when an Apollo spacecraft was crashed into it , the Moon rang like a bell ,,like it was hallow...


While use of raw material is something to consider, one would require foreknowledge of what raw materials were in supply before launching such consideration, otherwise, it's a blind shot.
Thus, there'd need be a mission to any proposed object to piggyback so as to assess available assets, and, if that mission returns reports unfavorable to such ends, then, other than the science done, the secondary 'main' mission window gets pushed back, delayed, and falls into further expense where space exploration budgets are already quite thin to begin with.

As to the moon "ringing like a bell", the Earth "rings like a bell" every time there's an earthquake of even the smallest magnitude.
It's kinda the reason how seismometers work.
It doesn't mean there's any kind of hollow going on anywhere.
Vibration ("ringing like a bell") travels quite effectively through solid masses, and even more effectively so than across voids, especially as is the case with the moon where there's no air for vibrations ("ringing like a bell") to travel through.
For the moon to "ring like a bell" it would necessarily have to to have a fairly solid consistency for such "ringing" to propagate.
If there were substantial voids, since there's no air, there would have been more of a dull "thud".
Thus, "ringing" would support indication of a more solid body than anything containing substantial voids.

Further, basing space travel off of conjecture and guessing is a recipe for lost astronauts, hardware, planning, and overall expense.
It'd be one thing were spaceflight an easy thing to accomplish on a less inclined gravitational plane such any Wright Brother operation could cobble some bicycle parts together to explore our solar system fast, loose, and devil-may-care, but, as it stands, the cost is such, and the danger tolerances so narrow, nothing is taken on chance, and even so, we've still lost roughly HALF the missions shot to Mars, and that's our CLOSEST, most predictable, and friendliest neighbor next to the Moon.
List of Mars Missions (success and failure)

Attempting to land on irregular asteroids and other more unpredictable bodies like comets?
Well, hazard tolerances would be even narrower.




posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 09:39 AM
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reply to post by AliceBleachWhite
 


Thank you all for your replies,it was quite educational;

I think I need to come clean about why I started this thread.

Last night i was meditating on the "How" of manned space travel,giving the advances we are making on ion thrusters(which just keep on accelerating the spacecraft).

Then I fell asleep and dreamed about a space craft with an ion thruster that was landing on an asteroid on the way to Titan....lol

So I woke up and started this thread right the way,ignoring the fact that there is no deceleration in space(that is until you encounter the gravity of a celestial body)

But I know it will take an infinite force to bring the space craft to 12km/s using Ion thrusters so......


All and all not a good idea i guess.....



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 10:53 AM
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reply to post by AliceBleachWhite
 


AliceBleachWhite
one would require foreknowledge of what raw materials were in supply before launching such consideration, otherwise, it's a blind shot.
Thus, there'd need be a mission to any proposed object to piggyback so as to assess available assets, and, if that mission returns reports unfavorable to such ends, then, other than the science done, the secondary 'main' mission window gets pushed back, delayed, and falls into further expense where space exploration budgets are already quite thin to begin with.

the Earth "rings like a bell" every time there's an earthquake of even the smallest magnitude.
It's kinda the reason how seismometers work.
It doesn't mean there's any kind of hollow going on anywhere.


I was never suggesting too use any old asteroid,, it sort of goes without saying ,,that it would all have too be carefully planned out.,,we are ways away from such an endeavor.

As far as the Moon "ringing like a bell", thats how NASA described it & reverberations lasted from nearly an hour or more...but I wasn't saying that it was proof it was hallow

But NASA still is having a hard time accounting for the strangely peculiar orbit of the moon around Earth & how it was formed...


-the three theories being ,,that the moon was formed along side the Earth,,but the age of rock samples taken seem to indicate otherwise

-or the Moon was formed when another planetoid hit Earth causing a part of the Earth to separate,,but they differ in composition

-or the Moon was captured by the earth's gravitational field,, but the mechanics involved to end up in the orbit it did would be very difficult.
edit on 17-2-2014 by Blowback because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 11:24 AM
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I am no orbital physics expert, but, other than hitching a free ride on a comet or asteroid, the only other way they could be utilized is incorporating them into a gravitational slingshot effect, however, I do not think any of them that frequent our inner solar system have any where near the mass to pull something like this off.

Any one know for sure?



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 11:35 AM
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They don't travel fast, whereas real travel is very quick, sometimes alternate dimensional and hyper space type thing, but other times its going through portals and using stargates.

The energy or votex's created might be useful.



posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 11:54 AM
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reply to post by Blowback
 


I would encourage a revisit of the current academic debate:

Origin of the Moon


The most widely accepted explanation for the origin of the Moon involves a collision of two protoplanetary bodies during the early accretional period of Solar System evolution. This "giant impact hypothesis", which became popular in 1984, satisfies the orbital conditions of the Earth and Moon and can account for the relatively small metallic core of the Moon. Collisions between planetesimals are now recognized to lead to the growth of planetary bodies early in the evolution of the Solar System, and in this framework it is inevitable that large impacts will sometimes occur when the planets are nearly formed.


There are also the

Capture
Fission
Accretion
and
Georeactor Explosion

models.

All of the models except for the Capture model account for both the Moon and Earth being made of the same materials, as well as being about the same age.

The Giant Impact Hypothesis, however, holds the greatest support based on current data in offering the most explanations and fewest issues of criticism where problems with GIH are not unassailable.

The other models offer less solution and more problems.

NASA, and the rest of the astronomical community (NASA isn't the be-all end-all say-so space police or anything) aren't having a hard time with anything much by way of having quite solid explanations for the Moon (unless one chooses to swallow the bait and hook propaganda of a number of conspiracy barkers that are in the business of selling their version of "truth").

We've a fair solid understanding of the geologies of our closest neighbors, and it's a little naive to think we wouldn't.

The moon is made of the same stuff as Earth. It's basically what the Earth would look and behave like if the Earth were the same size of the moon with an inactive and small nickel-iron core after baking under the sun without an atmosphere and acting as a shield for near every stray rock wandering into Earth/Moon orbit after 4.5 Billion years.







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