Dr. Wendell Mendell, Tuesday, 12-10-13 December 11, 2013Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: :Lunar Base Workshop, Apollo, Cislunar space, commercial space, commercial value of Moon, Congress, Constellation, Dr. Wendell Mendell, HSF, ISRU, ISU, LCROSS Mission, lunar base timeline, lunar permanently shadowed craters, lunar resource extraction and development, lunar water, Mars, Moon, NASA, NASA Asteroid Redirect Mission, NASA JSC, regolith volatiles, sample return to Earth, space advocacy, Space Task Group Report., telescopes, video games, water ice
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Dr. Wendell Mendell, Tuesday, 12-10-13
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Guest: Dr. Wendell Mendell. Topics: His 50 years at NASA, the Moon, lunar base work, congress & more. Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.
We welcomed Dr. Wendell Mendell back to the show for this two hour discussion (no break) about his 50 years at NASA JSC, lunar bases, commercial space, return to the Moon, the value of the Moon, our space program, space advocacy, commercial space, and lots more. Dr. Mendell came to work at JSC in 1963 &will be retiring at the end of this year, culminating 50 years at JSC. During our discussion, Dr. Mendell used lots of stories from his NASA and lunar base work experience to illustrate issues with space policy, NASA, our Congress, and space advocacy, & advanced technology. Listeners had lots of specific questions for Wendell about lunar bases, water on the Moon and its commercial exploitation, commercial lunar programs, and NASA having a lunar program which Dr. Mendell said it did not. Dr. Mendell spoke to some of the NASA organizational issues, congressional micromanagement issues and problems, and the nation’s overall economic problems as a reason for not doing this or that in space. He cited such economic problems as a rational excuse for not doing something meaningful in space in almost every year of his 50 years of NASA experience. The same for threatened, proposed, or even real NASA budget cuts. Later in the segment when caller Doug called in with his lunar water and development ideas, Dr. Mendell pointed to conflicting LCROSS analysis as to water being on the Moon. Russian instruments do not say the same thing as the Los Alamos instruments and he said this was & still is a hotly debated topic in the lunar community. As Doug continued talking about his plan, Dr. Mendell backed him up, took him step by step through the process of accomplishing his many goals. This turned out to be a very valuable instructional discussion that all of us can and should benefit from. Make sure you hear how Wendell breaks down Doug’s points to show the complexities and challenges of each incremental step in what Doug was proposing. Our guest even showed Doug where some of his steps needed commercial technogly which does not exist! Doug’s rocket of choice is the Falcon Heavy, a rocket which does not yet exist, nor does it have real numbers behind it. Wendell used this discussion to distinguish true believers from investor and commercial analysts. He then said when the believer is also able to bring his own money to the venture, things can get done and he cited SpaceX as an example. Later Doug asked by email if NASA could help private companies develop cislunar transportation as they have helped private companies provide launch services to LEO/GEO. The simple answer was yes but make sure you hear Dr. Mendell’s complete answer to this question. Another issue discussed was the needed timeline to do a human Moon mission. Wendell described the times of Apollo as compared to the times of NASA today. We talked about the importance of a better and different NASA and RTM story and again, Dr. Mendell illustrated his points with stories from his past experience. Spanning 50 years of history and experience was not easy to do in even a two hour Space Show program. As you listen to the program, you will hear many more subjects, stories, and issues discussed than stated in this summary. In the end, I believe NASA, our nation, and the effort to develop space has been served incredibly well by Dr. Wendell Mendell and his creativity, his drive, his analysis, his commitment, and his work will be genuinely missed by all. The Space Show wishes Wendell all the best for his coming retirement, gives him a hearty THANK YOU for his service, and we will remain in contact with him and hope to have him back with us at a future time.
Post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog above. You can email Dr. Mendell through me.
Donald (Don) Beattie, Friday, 5-31-13 May 31, 2013Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: "No Stone Unturned: A Life Without Bounds, Apollo 13, Apollo Program, Boy Scouts, Columbia, Donald Beattie, energy exploration, HSF, ISS, ISS centrifuge, lunar science, Mars. commercial lunar missions, Mobil Oil, MSFC, NASA, NewSpace, NSF, nuclear electric propulsion, oil well fracking, SLS, U.S. Navy, wind energy, wind turbans & NASA.
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Donald (Don) Beattie, Friday, 5-31-13
Guest: Donald (Don) Beattie. Topics: Don discussed his book, “No Stone Unturned” which details his NASA, Navy, NSF, and private sector careers. Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information.
We welcomed Don Beattie back to the program for this riveting 1 hour 25 minute discussion relating to Don’s experiences and careers with NASA on the Apollo program, NSF, the early days of flight with the U.S. Navy, a Mobil Oil energy expert in Columbia, plus a host of other experiences. I urge you to buy his book, “No Stone Unturned: A Life Without Bounds” at www.cgpublishing.com then clicking on the Apogee logo link. We talked about Don’s NASA experiences with the Apollo program for a good part of the first segment as well as the second segment. Since Don was a geologist, he worked with lunar maps, helped plan the lunar science missions, and even trained the astronauts in geology by going to analog sites with them all over the world. I asked him about his experiences with the different Apollo crews, his favorite missions & crews, and even to compare the NASA of the Apollo era to the NASA of today. Don had much to say about the importance of NASA and having a focused mission to carry out. He was asked about the SLS rocket which he said would be important if we ever go to NEOs or beyond, but he expressed concern over the very low launch rate planned for SLS. Don was also asked to compare NASA to NSF since he was with both organizations. Near the end of the first segment, a listener wanted to know about Werner Von Braun and his work with the MSFC. Don had quite a bit to say about Von Braun and even more about his relationship with MSFC teams.
In the second segment, the subject of the Boy Scouts and astronauts came up as a result of comments made at the Montana Rocky Mtn College astronaut panel discussions which Don viewed. Scouting has always had strong representation with the types of people who are attracted to NASA, space exploration, and being an astronaut. Also in this segment, we talked more about a NASA mission and NASA’s management. He told us about the NASA management and teams in place during Apollo and stressed that they made the program successful. Another listener asked what he did during the Apollo 13 mission. We also talked about the possibility of nuclear electric propulsion. I asked him for his favorite NASA Administrators and he named two. Late in the segment, we talked with Don about his energy work, Mobil Oil, Columbia, wind turbans & NASA, and the fracking of wells. Near the program’s end, a listener asked if had changed any of his views on the ISS per his book, ISScapades from a few years ago. Don said no, we talked about ISS crew size and the need for the centrifuge which was a priority but never materialized. At various times during our discussion we talked about our technical capabilities to go to Mars, Mars One, Inspiration Mars, commercial lunar missions, and human medical factors for long term spaceflight.
Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog. If you want to email Don Beattie, you can do so through me.
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.
Dr. Harley Thronson, Friday, 1-27-12 January 28, 2012Posted by The Space Show in Uncategorized.
Tags: Beyond LEO action plans, Cislunar development, Delta IV, Dr. Harley Thronson, Earth-Moon Libration Points, Future In-Space Operations (FISO) telecon, habitats, HSF, HSF design teams, HSF safety, Human spaceflight beyond LEO, ISS, ISS unused modules, life support, Mars, NASA's Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate, new launch technology, orbital propellant depots, radiation, radiation shielding, Return to the Moon, rockets, SLS, space accident preparedness, space development compromises, The Space Review
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Dr. Harley Thronson, Friday, 1-27-12
Guest: Dr. Harley Thronson. Topics: “Accelerating the Future: The Importance of Human Achievements Beyond LEO Within a Decade.” 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. Harley Thronson back to the show to discuss the existing and future planning for human spaceflight beyond LEO (BEO). We talked about two recent Space Review articles Dr. Thronson wrote which I believe you will find very interesting. (www.thespacereview.com/article/1985/1 and www.thespacereview.com/article/1756/1. In addition, Dr. Thronson discussed the Future In Space Telecon (FISO) series that he hosts every Wednesday afternoon at 3 PM EST. To learn more about FISO and get on their mailing list visit http://spirit.as.utexas.edu/~fiso/fisowg.html and www.futureinspaceoperations.com. In our first segment, we discussed the FISO telecons, then we switched to what’s next for human spaceflight (HSF) after LEO or BEO (beyond Earth orbit). For this discussion, we referred to the two Space Review articles referenced above. As we learned, there is considerable thought being given within NASA and among others at to what is next after the ISS and how do we start preparing for it. Dr. Thronson talked about prioritizing what has to be done to move beyond the ISS and LEO. Also in the mix were mission and even hardware design compromises that may enhance our ability to be ready to fly sooner, not later. Those involved in this planning are of the opinion that we must compromise and also must fly soon, start something, otherwise we will lose opportunities and drive up costs even more than they will be. Much of this has to do with being able to capitalize on the existing ISS workforce and those who know how to do space stations and HSF. If we do not retain these people, then starting over again years later will be costly and will have a huge learning curve associated with it. The goal of planners and thinkers Dr. Thronson is working with is to be BEO by the end of the decade. We discussed where to go and here, our guest had much to say about Mars and the Moon, but said Earth-Moon libration points were best for starting out using a stepping stone approach. Much of the first segment went into detail about these subjects and issues.
In the second segment, we talked about crew safety, using previously built but never used ISS modules as the basis for a BEO station, and compromises that can get us going quicker, not later but not adversely impacting safety. Michael called in to talk about accidents and inevitable fatalities with HSF and the industry to properly handle them when/if they happen. Both Dr. Thronson and I had much to say about safety, accident management, and this subject. Another listener wanted to know when there would actually be work on BEO projects rather than just talking about them. Dr. Thronson had much about getting started, time lines, mission readiness and more.
Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog above.