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Michael Paul, Penn St. Lunar Lion, Monday, 3-25-13 March 26, 2013

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Michael Paul, Penn St. Lunar Lion, Monday, 3-25-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1980-BWB-2013-03-25.mp3

Guest:  Michael Paul.  Topics:  The Penn State Google Lunar X Prize entry, the Lunar Lion.  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 Michael Paul to the program, the leader of the Penn State Google Lunar X Prize team, the Lunar Lion.  For more information, visit their team website, http://lunarlion.psu.edu.  Michael brings to the table his experience with NASA and the Applied Physics Lab at John Hopkins as he was the spacecraft systems engineer for the NASA Messenger mission.  During the first segment of our 95 minute program, Michael talked about the Lunar Lion project.  We discussed launch contracts and vehicles, secondary payloads, landing sites, hoppers as opposed to rovers, and what happens to the hardware at the end of the mission.  We talked about the Penn State students working on the project and listeners and I asked questions about his experiences on Messenger being applied to a GLXP project.  The listeners seemed to think this was a step or two down but listen to how Michael explained lessons learned and applications to the Lunar Lion project.  We also talked about funding for their project and that if they win, the money goes to Penn State to endow further space related research and students. We also had a treat in the first segment in that Michael’s 10 year old son was with him. We invited him to the program and it appears we may have a future space guru in the making!

In the second segment, we talked about space education and general audience space enthusiasm and awareness given Michael’s public talks.  He had some interesting comments and experiences to share with us.  We also talked about potential regulations adversely impacting their mission, sample returns, lunar activities and such.  Charles called to talk about up and downstream communications and the use of lasers.  Spacecraft quality control was another issue along with the development of commercial tools for a much broader application than the Penn State GLXP entry.  He also mentioned efficiency in spacecraft design and management but used the term, “a frugal approach.” He explained the difference between frugal and efficiency in terms of spacecraft design & management.  As our program ended, we talked about thermal protection, radiation hardening, film and space subjects and topics.  Our final topic was oversight and 3rd party eyes on their project for review & quality control.

Post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can email our guest through the Lunar Lion website or derspace@thespaceshow.com.

The John Batchelor Show Hotel Mars, Wednesday, 1-2-13 January 3, 2013

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The John Batchelor Show Hotel Mars, Wednesday, 1-2-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1922-BWB-2013-01-02.mp3

Guests:  John Batchelor, Dr. David Livingston:  Topics:  Our discussion is an overview of current and planned 2013 NASA planetary missions. 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. We do not permit the commercial use of any Space Show program or part thereof, nor do we permit Space Show programs to be edited, placed on YouTube, or other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted in news articles, papers, academic & research work but must be cited or referenced in the proper citation format. Contact Dr. Livingston for questions about our copyright and trademark policies which we do enforce.  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, http://www.johnbatchelorshow.com.  During our 11 minute plus discussion, John and I provided a short overview of current, operating NASA planetary and science missions plus missions planned for 2013.  We also mentioned a few ESA missions and talked about a future Europa mission.

Please post any comments/questions you might have on The Space Show blog.  You can contact Mr. Batchelor through me at drspace@thespaceshow.com.

Tom Olson, Monday, 12-31-12 January 1, 2013

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Tom Olson, Monday, 12-31-12

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1921-BWB-2012-12-31.mp3

2012 Year End Review & Analysis for Space Development

Guest:  Tom Olson.   Topics: The year 2012 is reviewed from the space perspective and we look forward to space development in 2013.  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 back Tom Olson for his annual Space Show year in review analysis with a look forward to 2013 for space development.  We started our discussion by remembering those in our space community that are no longer with us. We specifically mentioned three dear friends though we know that others have also left us.  Our program was dedicated to Neil Armstrong, Jesco von Puttkamer, and Reda Anderson.  We certainly miss our friends but space development marches on like everything else in life.  A few of the early issues Tom brought up in the 2012 annual overview of space included the Falcon 9 launches and Dragon missions.  He also talked about ISDC and birthing of Dragon during the keynote by NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden.  While on the subject of SpaceX and its mission to the ISS, Paul sent in a question asking if SpaceX dropping out of the Stratolauncher project indicated that perhaps they had “bitten off more than they could chew.”  Tom and I have no inside information about SpaceX and Stratolaunch but we both thought that Paul’s comment was reasonable as SpaceX is certainly busy enough with game changing projects & technology.  Cubesats were discussed given their rise in popularity and importance in 2012. It seems as if their potential is more than on the rise!  Cubesat growth also cuts across many diverse space industry segments and niche markets.  Bev asked about the future of 3-D printing and its potential impact on future human spaceflight (HSF). 3-D printing is certainly experiencing space industry growth & there will soon be a small 3-D printer on the ISS.  Heavy lift came up and much was said about the Falcon Heavy and SLS, both looking back over 2012 & forward to 2013.

In our second segment, I asked if fuel depots would evolve from the Power Point & rhetoric stage to something more tangible in 2013.  We talked about depots as many of the projects announced in 2012 use depot technology to enable their plan.  Tom talked about warp drive becoming more possible due to the 2012 work of Dr. Sonny White.  Dr. White will be a guest on The Space Show Friday, January 4, 2013.  Tom next brought up NASA budget issues & possible cuts.  He talked about science mission cuts, the JWST, and on the HSF side, SLS eating up much of the budget with commercial crew still needing funding.  I asked Tom how he thought space advocacy made out during 2012.  Mixed was a one word summary of this discussion.  Next, we talked about space settlement being made part of the U.S. space policy in 2013.  Tom went over the pros & cons surrounding this effort. Doug called in about space settlement & I referred him to earlier programs with Steve Wolfe who authored the Space Settlement Act of 1988 which is part of public law.  Tom said space settlement was SLS dependent & that makes the potential policy controversial to many space enthusiasts since many oppose SLS.  Tom said 2012 was a good year for new commercial space grandiose missions such as Golden Spike, Planetary Resources, Mars One, a lunar base, Shackleton Energy, even EML2 missions.  He kept asking the questions regarding objectives, who pays, the reasons for the missions, and more. He said most of these missions rely on some form of large launcher, either the Falcon Heavy SLS.  Tom talked about ITAR reform that has been signed by both houses of Congress & is applicable to the U.S. satellite industry.  Human rating of the Atlas came up for a 2012 progress report, then Dave in San Antonio inquired about cyber warfare & the space industry in 2012 & the future.  2012 marked the year the space shuttles went on display in museums & Tom talked about the Russian space program investments for modernization over the coming decade. He also talked about other national space programs.  Near the end of our program, we brought up the Spaceport America liability issue & the risks facing the New Mexico spaceport.  Tom updated us for 2013 on the NewSpace Business Plan Competition & his work with the Exodus Group for space business consulting.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can email Tom through drspace@thespaceshow.com.

Dr. David Lawrence, Friday, 12-28-12 December 29, 2012

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Dr. David Lawrence, Friday, 12-28-12

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1919-BWB-2012-12-28.mp3

Guest:  Dr. David Lawrence.  Topic:  The planet Mercury & the NASA Messenger Mission.  Please direct all comments & questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments & questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright & 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 Dr. David Lawrence to the program to discuss the planet Mercury & the NASA Messenger Mission’s latest finding.  For more information, visit the Messenger websites, http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/messenger/main/index.html & http://messenger.jhuapl.edu.  We started our discussion by describing the Mercury & the Messenger mission.  For example, it took over six years to get to Mercury because of the difficulty in slowing the spacecraft down given the close proximity to the sun.  Dr. Lawrence explained this process to us & the Venus, Mercury, & Earth flyby program used by the spacecraft to orbit around Mercury.  We talked about the spacecraft health, the instruments on board & the problem with the gamma ray spectrometer which worked for about 9,000 hours on an expected life of 8,000 hours.  However, data from this instrument is still being analyzed & will be for some time to come.  Other instruments on Messenger are fine & the spacecraft has a life expectancy to 2015.  Our guest explained mission nominal life & the process for mission extensions with additional NASA funding. We talked about funding issues for Messenger & other planetary missions in light of NASA budget issues & the overall U.S. economy.  Dr. Lawrence told us how the missions compete for extension & additional funding, plus the requirements they must meet to be extended.  Listeners wanted to know about the application of Messenger & Mercury science to Earth & other solar system missions, our Moon, a NEO, even Mars.  Other listeners wanted to know Mercury’s distances from the sun & Earth, as well as more about possible tectonic activity on Mercury.  We discussed basic chemical elements found on Mercury as well as volatile elements.

In our second segment, Dr. Lawrence was asked to identify the biggest surprise so far which he said had to do with the composition of the planet & volatile elements with high concentrations of sulfur & sodium, among others.  A listener asked about Mercury radiation levels & another listener wanted to know how Mercury crater’s got their names.  Dr. Lawrence then took us through the crater naming process which you can also read about on the Messenger websites.  We talked about Messenger’s discovery of Hollows (see, http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2011/24oct_sleepyhollows).  One listener asked our guest how one gets on a science team like Messenger. Dr. Lawrence explained the paths to joining these teams.  Mercury’s high density came up & our guest talked about most all of the iron on the planet being concentrated in its core.  We also talked about data analysis, archives, embargos, & availability.  Our guest directed us to the NASA Planetary Portal System for more information.  Near the end, we talked about the NASA Discovery Program & other successful Discovery missions including Dawn.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can email Dr. Lawrence through me or the APL Messenger website.

The John Batchelor Show “Hotel Mars,” Wednesday, 12-5-12 December 6, 2012

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The John Batchelor Show “Hotel Mars,” Wednesday, 12-5-12

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1908-BWB-2012-12-05.mp3

Guests: John Batchelor, David Lawrence, Dr. David Livingston:  Topics:  Mercury Messenger, water ice on Mercury.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. 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. We do not permit the commercial use of any Space Show program or part thereof, nor do we permit Space Show programs to be edited, placed on YouTube, or other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted in news articles, papers, academic & research work but must be cited or referenced in the proper citation format. Contact Dr. Livingston for questions about our copyright and trademark policies which we do enforce.  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. During our 11 minute plus discussion, David Lawrence, a member of the Mercury Messenger team and an in expert gamma-ray and neutron spectroscopy, talked about recent NASA announcements about Messenger confirming water ice on Mercury and organics.  He also talked about Mercury organics and that that really means as it is different in the context of Mercury.  During our segment, Mr. Lawrence talked about Mercury, why it is so interesting to study and why the new information about Mercury is so important to us.  You can read the NASA announcement about Mercury water ice at www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?release=2012-378&cid=release_2012-378

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can contact Mr. Batchelor or David Lawrence through me at drspace@thespaceshow.com.

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