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groz
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 03/14/07

Loc: Campbell River, BC
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: CounterWeight]
      #5927391 - 06/18/13 12:02 PM

Quote:


There could be so much done WRT 'proof of concept' and discovery just making a moon base I don't see any good reason not to do it.





Here is a good reason. The cost of keeping 3 to 6 humans in a low orbit situation, is already beyond the capability of a single national economy, requires co-operation of multiple nations.

Expand the travel to include a second gravity well on an airless chunk of rock, and the cost to maintain that base just went beyond the capability of the entire planet. And that's just for a handful of folks, nowhere near a count that has potential to become self sustaining.

Then again, if some form of threat showed up, which could be mitigated with a lunar base, then it would possibly happen. If the majority of defense spending by all countries was diverted to a lunar presence, that would possibly result in enough resource allocation to get the job done.

Not going to happen in my lifetime. The public today is more interested in building walls around various countries than it is in expanding our footprint to the solar system. It happened in the eastern bloc decades ago, and it's ongoing in the west today.

On the bright side, history has a lesson for us. Walls patrolled by armed guards and helicopters, ultimately bankrupt the countries building them, and cause changes in the politics. It's happened before, and it will happen again. Eventually, out of that will come a society tired of diverting resources in that direction, and start diverting them elsewhere. By then, maybe the technology of propulsion will allow for an economical way of moving outward, and things will truely change.

But, I doubt it will happen in my lifetime.


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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: Brent Campbell]
      #5927423 - 06/18/13 12:25 PM

Quote:

Quote:

The people who would go on such a trip would theoretically be the cream of the crop; People who can think and improvise their way out of any problem, handle any emergency with a cool head. Super people. And, when they colonize and start reproducing and populating this extra-solar planet, they will be the superior race we eventually contact.




Historically though that is not what colonized continents. If you are the cream of the crop you are going to have plenty of opportunities right here at home. We want the damaged people. "Our ancestors got kicked out of every decent country in the world" (Bill Murray Stripes).

The "damaged people" have little to loose by rolling the dice. And traveling to another planet is rolling the dice in a huge manner. If your life sucks at home with few prospects of improving it, then you may have nothing to loose by trying something different.




Brent,

Historically, you're correct, of course. But there's an order or two of magnitude difference between the skills required to be passengers on a sailing ship, and those required to maintain a massive piece of technology like an interstellar craft. In the past, the people fled their home countries on vessels that were common and easily available. A starship would be a slightly different matter.
And, I guarantee there would be a long waiting line of qualified people wanting to be included in the crew. If any dice rolling is done, it would be to see who wins a berth. The winners, not the losers, would be the ones to go.


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dickbill
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/30/08

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Ptarmigan]
      #5927424 - 06/18/13 12:25 PM

Quote:

I think we will go to another planet in the future. Most likely Mars.




yes but Mars doesn't really count. It's in our solar system. The question is for extrasolar planets.


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Mxplx2
sage


Reged: 09/12/12

Loc: PA USA
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: dickbill]
      #5927665 - 06/18/13 02:34 PM

Will we ever go to another planet? Let's turn it around and ask if we came from another planet, religious beliefs aside. Our progenitors might have trashed their home planet and passed that trait onto us.

I think it was a crash landing in the Garden of Eden with only two survivors.

Edited by Mxplx2 (06/18/13 04:08 PM)


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scopethis
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Reged: 05/30/08

Loc: Kingman, Ks
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? [Re: Mxplx2]
      #5927876 - 06/18/13 04:24 PM

yep. that's what happens when naked people fly spaceships....

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llanitedave
Humble Megalomaniac
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Reged: 09/26/05

Loc: Amargosa Valley, NV, USA
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: CounterWeight]
      #5928303 - 06/18/13 09:34 PM

Quote:

I think starting with small steps is the answer. Calculated effort and perceived difficulty and benefits vs. actual - you just don't know for certain until you do it. Start with a base or three on Luna, see what really happens. Then off to mars and it's moons, then to the asteroid belt, then past the belt. Taking small steps we are forced to do what we can with what we have. The technology 'leap frog' should not be huge, though learning from the process itself is possible too. But to not do it at all and relegate the effort to star-trek and Hollywood and sci-fi fantasy we are stuck in the perception stage of it all. I've often thought the difficulty in this 'Luna first' thinking is that it is politically 'too close' and we could just take our 'issues' out there and be hamstrung or worse. But then too, maybe not - or at least the issues might somehow evolve along with the effort.

At the end of the day, maybe we would be more thoughtful about the ideal space ship for the species we already inhabit.

There could be so much done WRT 'proof of concept' and discovery just making a moon base I don't see any good reason not to do it. I'd rather go through the discovery part of it with the relatively short distance first rather than need to somehow come up with miracles later.




I'm certain that's what will happen. There will be no epic mission from this planet to some extra-solar planet. There will be mobile habitats within the solar system, starting in the asteroid belt, then gradually extending outward to the Kuiper belt, and finally the Oort cloud. These habitats will be extracting resources off the small icy bodies there, away from strong gravitational fields and the need to travel at high speeds. When a habitat gets crowded, all the resources to build another are right there at their fingertips (or perhaps their tentacle-tips, depending on how they've evolved). Only when traveling leisurely from one frozen comet to another a few tens of A.U. away, probably using some sort of efficient ion propulsion powered by a fusion generator (or maybe an advanced E-CAT device, if we're dealing with the HMS Rossi ) will it seem like a natural thing to slip beyond the sphere of the Sun's gravitational influence, almost without noticing, and set a course for another mundane icy body that happens to be (barely) within the gravitational sphere of the next star out. Do this a few billion times, over a few million years, and our descendants have colonized the entire galaxy without even realizing it, and without ever setting foot on a large rocky planet.


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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: llanitedave]
      #5928316 - 06/18/13 09:44 PM

Sounds like a pretty sterile and confining existence to me. Think I'll go for a hike in the desert.

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Rick Woods
Postmaster
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Reged: 01/27/05

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Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: ColoHank]
      #5928329 - 06/18/13 09:51 PM

Quote:

Sounds like a pretty sterile and confining existence to me. Think I'll go for a hike in the desert.




Ditto.
Sorry, Dave, your Oort-cloud-denizen future sounds kind of awful to me. Make mine gravity - I like my bones.


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llanitedave
Humble Megalomaniac
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Reged: 09/26/05

Loc: Amargosa Valley, NV, USA
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: ColoHank]
      #5928339 - 06/18/13 10:00 PM

Hiking in the desert is where I get a lot of these crazy ideas.

Thing is, a huge percentage of the members of western civilization already live, quite happily perhaps, under conditions that I would already consider sterile and confining. Every time my wife and I have to make a trip to Las Vegas, we look at each other as we hit the first set of ugly boxes and repeat to each other our mutual gratitude that we no longer live in that environment. If for some reason I had to return to urban or even suburban living, I fear my life expectancy would become very nasty, brutish, and short. (Kind of like Danny DeVito).

But people jostle for the opportunity to acquire those places -- they consider living in them a sign of having "made it".

An intercometary habitat doesn't have to be a small tin can, it can be as fancy and diverse as its residents want to make it, within the limits of their imagination and resources. And as rich as comets are in raw resources, I don't consider the desire to build a fairly luxurious space city to be much of a problem. Once the population is large enough, and people consider it home, then quality of life is something they can create and define for themselves.

In my experience, most (not all, but most) human beings desire social status over freedom and even material widgets, and as long as there are plenty of other people to live with and in opposition to, they'll carry with them all the values they need to be happy, or to make each other miserable. I don't see it as being any different than living in Las Vegas.

You and I wouldn't be able to abide it. But neither you nor I constitutes the future of humanity. We're anachronisms, for better or worse.


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Pess
(Title)
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Reged: 09/12/07

Loc: Toledo, Ohio
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: groz]
      #5928751 - 06/19/13 07:35 AM

Quote:




Here is a good reason. The cost of keeping 3 to 6 humans in a low orbit situation, is already beyond the capability of a single national economy, requires co-operation of multiple nations.

Expand the travel to include a second gravity well on an airless chunk of rock, and the cost to maintain that base just went beyond the capability of the entire planet. And that's just for a handful of folks, nowhere near a count that has potential to become self sustaining.

Then again, if some form of threat showed up, which could be mitigated with a lunar base, then it would possibly happen. If the majority of defense spending by all countries was diverted to a lunar presence, that would possibly result in enough resource allocation to get the job done.

Not going to happen in my lifetime. The public today is more interested in building walls around various countries than it is in expanding our footprint to the solar system. It happened in the eastern bloc decades ago, and it's ongoing in the west today.

On the bright side, history has a lesson for us. Walls patrolled by armed guards and helicopters, ultimately bankrupt the countries building them, and cause changes in the politics. It's happened before, and it will happen again. Eventually, out of that will come a society tired of diverting resources in that direction, and start diverting them elsewhere. By then, maybe the technology of propulsion will allow for an economical way of moving outward, and things will truely change.

But, I doubt it will happen in my lifetime.




Pesse (Very well said) Mist


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Pess
(Title)
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Reged: 09/12/07

Loc: Toledo, Ohio
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5928757 - 06/19/13 07:44 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Sounds like a pretty sterile and confining existence to me. Think I'll go for a hike in the desert.




Ditto.
Sorry, Dave, your Oort-cloud-denizen future sounds kind of awful to me. Make mine gravity - I like my bones.




On the contrary, echoing what Dave said, my expectation is that generational ships may become so much 'Home' that they fly right by perfectly good planets and set up resdience in the Ort clouds of Solar systems. Then, when things get too crowded in the neighborhood, additional generational ships are made from the handy resources and set out to explore in another direction....but then that brings us right back to the paradox of why aliens are not here already? Certainly enough time has passed for them to setup in most hospitable solar systems.....

...my thought is they have, they just see no reason to come deep into the systems gravity well just to say hello.

And, again as our desert addled moderator suggests , The aliens may have adapted themselves to spaceflight so well that gravity kills.

Pesse (The utilizable space of a ship goes up geometrically if you are not confined to a 'floor') Mist


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UND_astrophysics
sage


Reged: 01/19/13

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Pess]
      #5928857 - 06/19/13 09:35 AM

Von Neumann universal constructors, and no reason to.

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CounterWeight
Postmaster
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Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Palo alto, CA.
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: UND_astrophysics]
      #5929111 - 06/19/13 12:11 PM

Well our congress (USA) is soon to release the next funding cycle and depending on the exact flavor and language that eventually get approved, it is back to the moon and then mars via the moon effort. I am glad to see something so sensible. Interesting to see how it might unfold, ISS to Luna... I wonder if the transit and supply vehicles could be assembled and fueled from materials in orbit. Also am curious if the idea of using the 'space elevator' concept on Luna would eventually find merit?

As to the point of what brought up earlier, I do remember something about a certain country that made it to the moon (and back) several times while there was a lot of civil unrest over an unpopular war (and much else), I'll let it go at that.

Edited by CounterWeight (06/19/13 02:19 PM)


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hm insulators
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/22/07

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Classic8]
      #5929317 - 06/19/13 01:54 PM

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!


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hm insulators
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/22/07

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: ColoHank]
      #5929321 - 06/19/13 01:58 PM

Quote:

Quote:



Quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------











Better take along a healthy supply of banjos, too. By the time that multi-generational ship reaches its destination, everyone on board is going to be so in-bred they'll look like the guy on the porch in Deliverance.






No problem!



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hm insulators
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/22/07

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Rudra]
      #5929325 - 06/19/13 01:59 PM

Quote:

And how these multi-generational ships will be made self sustaining? These spaceships, how their parts, that go bad or break, will be replaced? From where would we get the replacements? I do not think Kragen's or O'reilly Auto Store will be on the way, somewhere.




The Handyman's Secret Weapon: Duct tape.


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hm insulators
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/22/07

Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Mister T]
      #5929332 - 06/19/13 02:03 PM

Quote:

The hardest part about sending humans to another planet is that we have to send humans.




Good point.


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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: Pess]
      #5929429 - 06/19/13 02:39 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Sounds like a pretty sterile and confining existence to me. Think I'll go for a hike in the desert.




Ditto.
Sorry, Dave, your Oort-cloud-denizen future sounds kind of awful to me. Make mine gravity - I like my bones.




On the contrary, echoing what Dave said, my expectation is that generational ships may become so much 'Home' that they fly right by perfectly good planets and set up resdience in the Ort clouds of Solar systems. Then, when things get too crowded in the neighborhood, additional generational ships are made from the handy resources and set out to explore in another direction....but then that brings us right back to the paradox of why aliens are not here already? Certainly enough time has passed for them to setup in most hospitable solar systems.....

...my thought is they have, they just see no reason to come deep into the systems gravity well just to say hello.

And, again as our desert addled moderator suggests , The aliens may have adapted themselves to spaceflight so well that gravity kills.

Pesse (The utilizable space of a ship goes up geometrically if you are not confined to a 'floor') Mist




Still sounds awful. But hey - to each his own!


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Pess
(Title)
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Reged: 09/12/07

Loc: Toledo, Ohio
Re: Will we ever go to another planet? new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5929471 - 06/19/13 02:55 PM

Quote:

Still sounds awful. But hey - to each his own!




Pesse (Everything is relative. To a Dolphin, a desert sounds a little gritty...) Mist


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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: CounterWeight]
      #5929502 - 06/19/13 03:10 PM

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?


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