Robert (Bob) Zimmerman, Monday, 4-30-12 April 30, 2012Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: asteroid mining, Commercial Crew, commercial markets, customary international law, down select, Dragon, Earth imaging, Falcon 9. , Federal Acquisition Rules (FAR), Moon Treaty, Outer Space Treaty, Planetary Resources, property rights, Robert (Bob) Zimmerman, SLS, Space Act Agreement, space telescopes, Space X, static test, U.S. congress
Robert (Bob) Zimmerman, Monday, 4-30-12
Guest: Robert (Bob) Zimmerman. Topics: Space X static test, Congress & commercial crew, Planetary Resources & space property rights. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed Bob Zimmerman back to the program to discuss today’s Falcon 9 static test, Congress & commercial crew, and the Planetary Resources announcements of last week. Visit Bob’s website for more information, http://behindtheblack.com. During the first segment, Bob talked about congress and its proposed treatment of commercial crew including down selecting the companies, reducing funding, and moving to the FAR instead of remaining with the Space Act Agreement. Bob got lots of questions about markets in space and why commercial companies need government money in the first place. In this segment, we also talked about the Falcon 9 static test today and its relevance for congress. Bob targeted SLS for discussion. As you will hear, there was not much support for SLS among those of us listening to today’s program.
In the second segment, we talked about the Planetary Resources venture announced last week. Part of our focus was on the 9″ space telescope, its likely uses and resolution. We talked about it for asteroid finding and Earth imaging – with serious reservations. Bob suggested that the real business for the company was in selling the space telescopes to customers wanting that product or service as the mining was still a decade or so out into the future. In talking about the telescope, we discussed pointing, stability, resolution, being placed on the Moon, and less than ideal light coming from the asteroids. In talking about space telescopes, we discussed Hubble and the JWST. In other space news updates, Bob talked about Orbital moving Antares to the pad for its testing and there is an article on his blog about it being seriously over budget: www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/orbital-sciences-development-costs-increase-371291. Another topic we discussed was the Chinese political system and its turmoil, also its economy and how this might impact their space program. Bob had much to say about this as well as India and its space program which he said might prove to be the dark horse in space development. Toward the end of this 2 hour 8 minute program, Michael Listner called in to talk about legal issues for Planetary Resources in their resource extraction stage of development, plus property rights, the Outer Space Treaty and even the impact of the Moon Treaty. Bob and Michael had a spirited debate about these issues, including the potential influence of the Moon Treaty and international customary law which Bob completely dismissed. Michael has an excellent article on the subject at www.spacesafetymagazine.com/2012/04/26/commercial-space-leap-earth-orbit-legal-implications/.
Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog. You can reach Bob Zimmerman through his website.
The John Batchelor Show, Hotel Mars, Friday, 4-27-12 April 28, 2012Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: : John Batchelor, asteroid mining, Commercial Crew, commercial space, Congress, John Batchelor Show, Mary Kissel, NASA, Rep. Frank Wolf of Virginia, space entrepreneurs, space property rights, space telescopes
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The John Batchelor Show, Hotel Mars, Friday, 4-27-12
Guests: John Batchelor, Mary Kissel, Dr. David Livingston. Topics: Commercial space, Congress, asteroid mining, space telescopes, entreprenurism. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Written transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. This program is archived on The Space Show website, podcasting, and blog sites with permission from John Batchelor. Please visit the John Batchelor Show website for more information about this fine program, www.johnbatchelorshow.com. The John Batchelor Show broadcast live from Stanford and the Hoover Institution this week and I drove down to do a special Hotel Mars segment Friday evening live in the studio with John and Mary. Our topics were commercial space and crew, Rep. Frank Wolf and the potentially dangerous changes his subcommittee wants to make with regards to commercial crew contracting, downselecting participants, and funding reductions. During our discussion, I offered a public invitation to Rep. Wolf to be a guest on The Space Show to explain the purpose behind and the need for the changes that have been reported and that we have been reading about. If any of you the listeners know Rep. Wolf or have connections in his office, help us get him or one of his top staffers to be a guest on The Space Show.
If you want to email either John Batchelor or Mary Kissel, you can do so through me at email@example.com.
Dr. Lewis Fraas, Friday, 4-27-12 April 26, 2012Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: Affordable solar electric power, Dr. Lewis Fraas, MiraSolar Satellite Concept, Mirrors in Space, mylar, peak power, polar orbits, solar ground stations, solar in GEO, solar in LEO, space assembly, space debris issues., space solar power, terrestrial solar energy, Van Allen radiation belts
Dr. Lewis Fraas, Friday, 4-27-12
Guest: Dr. Lewis Fraas. Topic: Mirrors in space for affordable solar electric power. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed Dr. Lewis Fraas to the program to discuss his MiraSolar Satellite Concept for mirrors in space for solar electric power. I have posted two of his presentation papers and slides on The Space Show blog for your review. You can find more about his concept by visiting his website, http://jxcrystals.com/lendrupal. At his website, go to the lower right corner for links to MiraSolar. As our discussion addressed common topics throughout our 90 minute program, I’m writing this summary without regard to program segments. We started our discussion by asking Dr. Fraas to provide us with an overview of his mirrors in space concept. This he did, drawing from time to time upon comparisons with space solar power concepts placing their satellites in GEO while the mirrors would be in LEO around 1,000 km. Dr. Fraas made comparisons with SSP and mirrors in space throughout our 90 minute discussion. We talked about optics and physics as well as the power generating size of the ground stations used in his concept, comparing those to nuclear power plants and other power generating facilities. I believe you will find the power comparisons most interesting. We spent a considerable time going over the launch and project economics as well as due diligence from a mostly economic perspective. As you will hear, there are some blanks yet to be filled in but since this project is a decade or so out in the future, it is challenging to project values and costs that far into the future, let alone what launch vehicles we will have along with their flight, payload, and price characteristics. Another important part of the discussion focused on ground stations. Dr. Fraas zeroed them out of the economics when the ground station was built for or was being used for terrestrial solar as the mirrors in space project can make use of the same station. In cases where the mirrors program needs its own ground station, those costs would be factored into the total project costs. Listeners asked about environmental issues, an EIR and its challenges. Dr. Fraas made a point of being clear that this was an international project, not just focused on the U.S. He also suggested that there was a possibility of limiting or restricting U.S. regulations down the road but that other countries might be more interested in mirrors in space, including China, Japan, and India. We had an interesting discussion about the U.S. and the space progress being made in other countries. Tony asked a series of questions pertaining to using more not fewer mirrors for terrestrial solar farms. He also wanted to know the launch price that made the project viable. Dr. Fraas referred to NASA and other studies and cited two reference launch prices. See what you think when you hear this discussion. Another topic dealt with radiation at the orbit Dr. Fraas discussed. Here, we talked about the inner Van Allen belt and thanks to a listener, we got some info on debris issues at the desired orbit. Don’t miss this discussion. As we heard, it might be advantageous to shift the orbit to 1200 KM for debris mitigation purposes. Another discussion topic addressed competition with always improving terrestrial forms of energy under development and in the process of coming on line.
You can email Dr. Fraas for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog and I will be sure to call them to the attention of our guest.
Open Lines, Tuesday, 4-24-12 April 25, 2012Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: Chris Kraft, commercial crew funding cuts, Dragon Capsule, Falcon 9. , HSF, human Mars mission, Inc. asteroid mining, ISS, JSC, launch systems, Mars exploration vs. ocean exploration, Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston, Planetary Resources, SLS, space mission time lines., Space X, specific missions
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Open Lines, Tuesday, 4-24-12
Guest: Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston. Topics: asteroid mining, Planetary Resources, Inc. SLS. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed an Open Lines discussion inviting calls and emails on all space related topics. As it turned out, two topics were primary during the program and as a result of that, I will not summarize this program by segment as I usually do. First, the asteroid mining venture as put forth in the press conference for Planetary Resources, Inc. was primary throughout the program. The second commanding topic was the SLS and Op-Ed in the Houston Chronicle on April 20, 2012 by the JSC former director, Chris Kraft & Tom Moser. You can read the article at www.chron.com/opinion/outlook/article/Space-Launch-System-is-a-threat-to-JSC-Texas-jobs-3498836.php. You can read more about this Op-Ed on Space News at www.spacenews.com/commentaries/120423-fromwires-sls-threat-jsc-jobs.html. Many of the callers throughout the discussion commented on the Op Ed, the SLS, and its future. We also talked about the need for heavy lift, having a specific mission or missions for a rocket, destinations, and a time line for milestone accomplishment. Our first caller was Charles in Las Vegas who commented that he thought Planetary Resources was more “sizzle than steak.” Charles was not supportive of a business model relying on secondary payloads. Instead, he said the company had to control its own launch needs. During our three segments, many listeners said they did not agree with Charles, including me. Many of us thought it was possible to use secondary payloads and during our 105 minute program, we covered this subject with the benefits and risks of relying on others, on sole source providers, etc. As for the Op Ed, we talked about it at length, wondered about the NASA lunar study mentioned by Mr. Kraft as well as the existing rockets that could do HSF to the Moon or beyond LEO. The consensus for those calling tonight’s show was that SLS in its present format using the current management program will probably be cancelled in 2013 or 2014 despite the support Congress appears to be giving it at this time. Mixed in with the SLS calls, we did talk about the new launch date for the Falcon 9, there was lots of interest in asteroid mining and new technology development to make it happen, plus a few other topics that brought to the listeners attention. When we came back from the final break which was at the 90 minute point, I used the remaining time to highlight some of the special upcoming Space Show programs for the rest of this month into early summer.
Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog. If you want to email any of the callers or those sending in email questions for this program, send your note to me and I will forward it to you.
Doug Jones, Sunday, 4-22-12 April 23, 2012Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: 3D printers, citizen science research projects., Doug Jones, engine burn times, ITAR, Lynx flight test program, Lynx MK 1, Lynx MK2, Lynx MK3, nonburnite tank, piston pump, Planetary Resources, pressure pump, rocket racer, Rotary Rocket, seat lifter, space suits, Space X, thermal fatigue, thermodynamic equilibrium, ULA, XCOR
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Doug Jones, Sunday, 4-22-12
Guest: Doug Jones. Topics: XCOR Aerospace and the Lynx. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed Doug Jones to the program to update us on XCOR Aerospace, the Lynx suborbital vehicle, rocket engines, and more. Doug is a co-founder of XCOR. You can find out more about the company at their website, www.xcor.com. Doug started us off with a brief history of XCOR from the beginning to today. After this historical overview, I brought up an email question from Andy in the UK about a scaled up version of the Lynx engine for a version of ULA’s Centaur upper space or space tug. Doug had much to say about the ULA space tug idea in response to the listener question. Doug then talked about the Lynx suborbital vehicle and the various versions of it, the Mark 1, Mark 2, and Mark 3. He was asked if XCOR was planning to do anything with the newly announced Planetary Resources venture yet to be described. He did say there were ways XCOR could be supportive of some aspects of a deep space mission. Doug addressed crew exit from the Lynx and described the seat lifter, using a parachute, and the exit strategy plus Lynx training before the flight. Near the end of the first segment, Tony asked about Doug’s earlier comments regarding the nonburnite tank and Harry inquired about different pricing for the various Lynx vehicle versions.
We opened the second segment with a call from Jon in Jersey City regarding manufacturing and pricing targets with Space X as well as relating to XCOR. Doug talked about production lines and more or less mass producing parts for the benefit of commodity pricing. Bill from Virginia sent in a note asking about the relationship of test burn times to an operational flight with much longer burn times. He wondered if short test burn times for the engines and systems was enough. We also talked about the flight test program and backup vehicles. Tony called in and wanted to know about the possibility of bringing back the Rotary Rocket engine. Doug had some interesting comments on this issue. The flight test program came up again and our guest provided us with a basic idea of how the test program would unfold. ITAR was a big subject in this segment as were several listener questions dealing with piston and pressure pumps for XCOR engines. Toward the end, we talked about spacesuits, 3D printers, vertical integration for manufacturing, and the Lynx serving as a space taxi vehicle, not a rental car. This latter point was made when Doug was asked about independent operators buying and flying the Lynx as compared to XCOR flying and operating the Lynx.
Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.
Ed Buckbee, Friday, 4-20-12 April 20, 2012Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: "The Real Space Cowboys, Chinese Space Program, Commercial Crew, Ed Buckbee, human spaceflight, ISS, lunar commercialization, lunar settlement, Mars, NASA, SLS, Space Shuttle, space vision, U.S. Space Camp, Wernher Von Braun
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Ed Buckbee, Friday, 4-20-12
Guest: Ed Buckbee. Topics: Wernher Von Braun, NASA, Space Policy, SLS, commercial crew, HSF. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed Ed Buckbee back to the show to discuss NASA, Wernher Von Braun’s influence on our space program, and the future of human spaceflight. To learn more about Mr. Buckbee’s activities, visit his website, www.air-space.com. Ed started us off with a brief history of human spaceflight going back to the flight of Alan Shephard. He had much to say about the early period of NASA’s history being fertile grounds for young people, inspiration, and motivation. I asked him about his recent award received in Munich, Germany, the Wernher Von Braun Gold Medal for Promotion and Support of Human Spaceflight. Ed had much to say about receiving this award and its significance. As a key player in the U.S. Space Camp program, I asked him many questions about space camp and as you will hear, we strongly recommend it if you have or know kids of the appropriate age for attending it in Huntsville. Listeners asked many questions about the influence of Von Braun on our space program as well as his part in the SS in Nazi Germany. Ed talked about this throughout our program. Another issue that was heavily discussed was the Chinese space program. Listeners had many questions for him about the Chinese program, how it was viewed by NASA, Congress, DOD, as well as their costs for space access & program development. Another listener asked him about space tourism, both orbital and suborbital tourism. Ed thought it would prove interesting but did not think we should depend on it as a killer app for economic or industrial development. Terry called and asked Ed the interesting question of how the younger Germans viewed Von Braun given his being part of the SS and then coming here to lead the development of our space program. Ed said the older Germans definitely see him as being part of the Third Reich. The younger Germans see him as part of technology and in past history. Don’t miss the full discussion with Mr. Buckbee regarding this question. Toward the end of our first segment, we talked about Von Braun and going to the Moon with Ed suggesting today he would be promoting it as an international mission with 5-7 countries taking part in it.
In the second segment, we received a listener email asking what President Eisenhower said if anything in private about Von Braun. Ed seemed to think Ike was OK with Von Braun given his appointments and positions once NASA was created. About this time during the show, I received the Cosmic Log email notice which was about the retirement of the shuttle so I asked Ed about shuttle’s retirement. You will want to hear what he had to say about it. The issue of the NASA budget came up and I brought up the subcommittee hearings from earlier in the week with recommendations to reduce commercial crew funding in favor of the Mars exploration program, SLS, and JWST. We talked about the importance of commercial crew and the need to keep it on track to restore U.S. HSF capability. Both of us plus several listeners expressed the opinion that it would be the private sector taking us back to the Moon and for commercial reasons. Near the end of the program, a listener asked about the Von Braun family and their interest in today’s NASA and space program. I think you will find what Ed had to say to be most interesting regarding Von Braun’s children and his wife and how they view space.
If you have any questions or comments for Mr. Buckbee, please post them on The Space Show blog.