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Pess
(Title)
*****

Reged: 09/12/07

Loc: Toledo, Ohio
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: ColoHank]
      #5929522 - 06/19/13 03:20 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I wonder if the transit and supply vehicles could be assembled and fueled from materials in orbit.




Of course they could. All we'd have to do is duplicate all of the extractive, refining, processing, and manufacturing capabilities which are employed for similar tasks here on Earth. Any idea how many specialized contractors and subcontractors (companies, not individual workers) have been involved in one way or another with the creation of the ISS?

Thousands? Tens of thousands?




I agree. I think we are a very long way from affording as well as possessing the technology to sustain a colony on the moon.

I also feel the same way about a manned mission to Mars.

Heck, we couldn't even maintain a closed system on Earth. Remember the Biosphere experiment?

The idea that we have the technology to allow moon or Mars astronauts to survive for even moderate stays just doesn't exist yet.

Pesse (When we invent a Mars or Lunar bull dozer that can move dirt around in those environments, come back and talk to me. ) Mist


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scopethis
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/30/08

Loc: Kingman, Ks
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Pess]
      #5929727 - 06/19/13 05:23 PM

why not drop all the spacecraft designs and invest more on teleportation....beaming our way around the Universe...

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Pess
(Title)
*****

Reged: 09/12/07

Loc: Toledo, Ohio
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: scopethis]
      #5929777 - 06/19/13 05:51 PM

Quote:

why not drop all the spacecraft designs and invest more on teleportation....beaming our way around the Universe...




The number one problem associated with exploration of the Universe and nearby planets can be summed up in one word 'power'.

We need lots & lots of it and we need some sort of storage system that can hold lots & Lots of it.

Pesse (If Pons and Fleischmann had really discovered what they thought they discovered...we'd be on our way!...of course, they have never 'retracted' their claim....) Mist


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UND_astrophysics
sage


Reged: 01/19/13

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: scopethis]
      #5929787 - 06/19/13 05:56 PM


I have to say That Pesse is right. Mars would be a death sentence even if we could return the astronauts. It took a national priority to get to the Moon, it would take the will of Nations to get to Mars anytime soon. There is no possibility at the present for the kind of technical challenges that would need to be solved, especially with the anti-science attitude so prevalent in the United States right now. There would need to be an international coalitions of governments, Space-X is not going to cut it no matter how many want to hoorah private enterprise. Fast Short term large economic returns are needed for a private mission, and Science does not do that.


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ColoHank
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 06/07/07

Loc: western Colorado
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: scopethis]
      #5929835 - 06/19/13 06:24 PM

Quote:

why not drop all the spacecraft designs and invest more on teleportation....beaming our way around the Universe...




Pick one:

(A) Because it doesn't work.

(B) Because we can get there faster riding on unicorns.

(C) Because it requires a satellite TV contract.


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llanitedave
Humble Megalomaniac
*****

Reged: 09/26/05

Loc: Amargosa Valley, NV, USA
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Pess]
      #5929859 - 06/19/13 06:45 PM

Quote:


And, again as our desert addled moderator suggests




*EX* moderator. They've got the professionals in there now.


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llanitedave
Humble Megalomaniac
*****

Reged: 09/26/05

Loc: Amargosa Valley, NV, USA
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: hm insulators]
      #5929883 - 06/19/13 06:59 PM

Quote:

Quote:

We could just send the politicians. The thrust from their verbosity should be enough to accelerate the ship to near light speeds, thus eliminating long travel times. And getting them out of our hair sooner.




Hear! Hear!




Problem is, to get measurable net thrust, the verbosity would all have to be aligned in the same direction. With the current exhaust arrangement, we just spin in place until one blows up.


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Rick Woods
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/27/05

Loc: Inner Solar System
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: UND_astrophysics]
      #5930078 - 06/19/13 09:18 PM

Quote:


I have to say That Pesse is right. Mars would be a death sentence even if we could return the astronauts. It took a national priority to get to the Moon, it would take the will of Nations to get to Mars anytime soon. There is no possibility at the present for the kind of technical challenges that would need to be solved, especially with the anti-science attitude so prevalent in the United States right now. There would need to be an international coalitions of governments, Space-X is not going to cut it no matter how many want to hoorah private enterprise. Fast Short term large economic returns are needed for a private mission, and Science does not do that.




Not necessarily. China has a powerhouse economy that could fuel the mission, and a form of government that can accomplish these things merely by commanding that they be done. If anyone is going to do either of those things in the next 50 years or so, it'll be them.
Unless something happens to shut them down economically.


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Joad
Wordsmith
*****

Reged: 03/22/05

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5930115 - 06/19/13 09:38 PM

China has enormous financial liabilities that most Americans are not aware of. Just today a Marketwatch.com column noted how the Chinese government has to undertake a massive socio-economic reorganization in order to satisfy a growing, linked-up middle class that is getting impatient with the way that Chinese wealth is mostly going now to a handful of billionaires and to state-run industries.

China is also going to have enormous costs associated with an air pollution problem that makes Los Angeles's air look pristine.

Global climate change is also likely to hit China hard and expensively.

Finally, in what I think is an unprecedented historical development, China has the very expensive task of paying for the deficit spending of the United States. The Chinese aren't buying trillions of dollars worth of T-Bills at almost no interest because they are such a great investment; they are doing so because they know that if they didn't, the US economy would be thrown into recession (or worse), and so the huge US market for Chinese goods would dry up, or, at least, diminish. And this is crucial to China because without the huge economic growth rates made possible by American consumption of Chinese goods, the unelected government would be unable to keep the world's largest population under control. And that population has been getting restless for quite some time.

So, China has a lot of big problems to cope with before undertaking a race for space. I see a few smallish missions for the sake of national pride, but nothing on the order of serious space exploration.


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dickbill
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/30/08

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Joad]
      #5931045 - 06/20/13 10:44 AM

Quote:

...I see a few smallish missions for the sake of national pride, but nothing on the order of serious space exploration.




How would you call a 'flyby' around Mars, or even an asteroid?


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scottk
sage


Reged: 08/29/09

Loc: Tennessee
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: ColoHank]
      #5931126 - 06/20/13 11:30 AM

I have to disagree with your (b.) problem. These are not turbo-powered unicorns.

Edited by scottk (06/20/13 11:31 AM)


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Joad
Wordsmith
*****

Reged: 03/22/05

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: dickbill]
      #5931252 - 06/20/13 01:03 PM

Quote:

Quote:

...I see a few smallish missions for the sake of national pride, but nothing on the order of serious space exploration.




How would you call a 'flyby' around Mars, or even an asteroid?




I would call those smallish missions—in relation to the theme of this thread, which concerns human landings on planets both in this solar system and outside it.


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Rick Woods
Postmaster
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Reged: 01/27/05

Loc: Inner Solar System
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Joad]
      #5931395 - 06/20/13 02:23 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

...I see a few smallish missions for the sake of national pride, but nothing on the order of serious space exploration.




How would you call a 'flyby' around Mars, or even an asteroid?




I would call those smallish missions—in relation to the theme of this thread, which concerns human landings on planets both in this solar system and outside it.




I'm not sure I agree. Sending humans on a flyby mission to Mars, sans landing, would still entail solving all the big obstacles that confront us now; namely, those concerned with keeping humans alive and healthy in space for multi-year voyages. We already have viable landing and takeoff technologies. So, orbiting humans around Mars would be only slightly less difficult than landing them. Nothing small there!

(I'm assuming you were referring to orbiting humans, although you didn't actually say that.)


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CounterWeight
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Palo alto, CA.
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Joad]
      #5931490 - 06/20/13 03:15 PM

Not in response to any one person musing about what is small.

I wouldn't call any of this small, especially considering the obvious obstacles of repeating the efforts today. Why the need to minimize such a great achievement as going to our moon and returning? It was great effort and great minds and people that took us there, and minimizing that I see as not just small but tiny minded at best. Though at this point all the people I personally knew or worked with have passed on - they were better and put out far more than you are giving them credit for. What part of "We came in peace for all mankind" could anyone have a problem with? Getting to the moon and back was the result of a huge amount of smaller programs (and people) that were each pushed to the limit. I doubt any of it was without duplication of effort, waste, inefficiency, non-ideal conditions and all the rest. So let's think about not minimizing it all here because we don't live in a perfect world today. (whatever folks perceive that to be) That IMO is what helped kill of the program back in the 70's.

Not an issue of can we get to Mars (of course we could), just do we really want to do what it takes, and do we want the folks to come back. Would we be in a good position to do anything at all if there was a problem. Would we be in a position to do it more than once...

I don't see any of it as too small or too large. The momentum and effort required to regain it and successfully continue it may appear daunting and here too minimizing any of it is hazardous. There have been significant advances in some areas that could optimize some aspects, chief among these I feel is the ISS. Locating a base on the moon that might have some capability to get water and produce foodstuffs would be another step. Like that old joke about eating an elephant, the only way is one bite at a time. The eventual benefits and/or payoff of creating an infrastructure off our planet surface may seem like a bunch of tradeoffs and I'm certain that is correct, at some point I think some of the inflection points would favor the lower gravity and redundancy.

I'm avoiding anything other than the Luna / Mars issue as it seems like wanting to ace a senior college level math exam having no previous math courses, or desire to take them. There is a lot of great Sci-Fi / Fantasy out about other worlds and interstellar travel already.


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Joad
Wordsmith
*****

Reged: 03/22/05

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5931556 - 06/20/13 03:53 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

...I see a few smallish missions for the sake of national pride, but nothing on the order of serious space exploration.




How would you call a 'flyby' around Mars, or even an asteroid?




I would call those smallish missions—in relation to the theme of this thread, which concerns human landings on planets both in this solar system and outside it.




I'm not sure I agree. Sending humans on a flyby mission to Mars, sans landing, would still entail solving all the big obstacles that confront us now; namely, those concerned with keeping humans alive and healthy in space for multi-year voyages. We already have viable landing and takeoff technologies. So, orbiting humans around Mars would be only slightly less difficult than landing them. Nothing small there!

(I'm assuming you were referring to orbiting humans, although you didn't actually say that.)




You assumed wrongly. I wasn't referring to orbiting humans. The Chinese are not going to do that.


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Otto Piechowski
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 09/20/05

Loc: Lexington, KY
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: scottk]
      #5931618 - 06/20/13 04:33 PM

Back to the Opening Post; probably it has been said, but I would suspect we will only be going to another planet if (1) we identify a planet on which humans can live, (2) within the distance of human propulsion technologies, and then (3) if we have received some indisputable evidence of sentient (intelligent) life elsewhere in the universe.

I see all there of these as necessary, but (3) is the conditio sine qua non and raison d'être of travel to another world.


I do not see travel to another world possible without political consensus.


It is remotely possible that travel to other worlds could be the result of a spiritual or religious motivation. I'm thinking here of the author of Dune speaking of space travel as the new religion, and I am thinking of the middle ages when the church was the supporter and patron of massive artistic expenditures. However, for the latter to happen, there would have to first be a separate political consensus because the historical condition of modernity (today) is just not the same as the historical conditions of the medieval period.


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llanitedave
Humble Megalomaniac
*****

Reged: 09/26/05

Loc: Amargosa Valley, NV, USA
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Otto Piechowski]
      #5932445 - 06/21/13 01:53 AM

I don't see travel to the local convenience store possible without political consequences.

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UND_astrophysics
sage


Reged: 01/19/13

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: llanitedave]
      #5932533 - 06/21/13 05:49 AM


There will be no great plans in the current geopolitical environment. Until Humans come to a consensus and dispose of ideas of "National pride" and who goes where first, I do not see any reason in even worrying about long term space and interplanetary missions. Science is not the realm of a political or economic ideology. While they may make some short term benefits, in reality it is wasteful and a symptom of what is wrong with humanity now. Once people get the dogma that they were born and conditioned with out of their brains only then can humanity make great strides in space exploration. Until then, we will keep wasting money on counterproductive enterprises such as weapons development and warfare against fellow humans, instead of spending resources on things that benefit humanity.


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Rick Woods
Postmaster
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Reged: 01/27/05

Loc: Inner Solar System
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Joad]
      #5933834 - 06/21/13 10:29 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

...I see a few smallish missions for the sake of national pride, but nothing on the order of serious space exploration.




How would you call a 'flyby' around Mars, or even an asteroid?




I would call those smallish missions—in relation to the theme of this thread, which concerns human landings on planets both in this solar system and outside it.




I'm not sure I agree. Sending humans on a flyby mission to Mars, sans landing, would still entail solving all the big obstacles that confront us now; namely, those concerned with keeping humans alive and healthy in space for multi-year voyages. We already have viable landing and takeoff technologies. So, orbiting humans around Mars would be only slightly less difficult than landing them. Nothing small there!

(I'm assuming you were referring to orbiting humans, although you didn't actually say that.)




You assumed wrongly. I wasn't referring to orbiting humans. The Chinese are not going to do that.




Actually, my (unfortunately poorly-worded) assumption was about Dickbill's comment about a flyby. Are you speaking for him? And by extension, since human travel to other planets (not what the Chinese are doing) is the subject of this thread, I assumed your response to his comment was also about human travel, rather than being a non-sequitur.
That was, indeed, an incorrect assumption.


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dickbill
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/30/08

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5934261 - 06/22/13 09:16 AM

Well, to me a 'flyby' to Mars is indeed a small endeavor, and we can do better, we can land on Mars.
The sooner the better because the world is heading to stagnation, most likely recession et possibly worse.
The period 2020-2060 +/- 20 will be tough moment in human history. With demographic, social and natural events coalitioned against what will be seen as completely unnecessary fancy projects. So, in my very personnal view of our immediate future, either we (i.e the US mainly) land a foot to Mars in the next 10-20 years, or it's postponed until 2070 and later.


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