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John Strickland, Monday, 3-19-13 March 20, 2013

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John Strickland, Monday, 3-19-13


Guest:  John Strickland.  Topics:  NSS, ISDC, space settlement, SSP, launcher reusability & more.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, https://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 John Strickland for this two hour discussion on a wide range of topics of interest to the NewSpace, commercial space, and space settlement audiences.  John started out by talking about the upcoming NSS ISDC Conference in San Diego from May 23-27.  For more information visit the NSS website, www.nss.org and click on the ISDC link.  Some tracks are still open for submitting abstracts so if this interests you, click on the appropriate link at the ISDC site.  During this part of our discussion, John talked about the NSS Roadmap and the planned coverage of it at ISDC 2013.  John was then asked about the deep space commercial and Mars ventures announced in 2012 and so far this year.  He said they were helpful to the overall space settlement agenda and explained how in his discussion comments.  He added that the Mars missions and Golden Spike were “laudable” but suggested we may not be ready by the time the projects give for doing the venture. He later said he would have spent the money differently.  Don’t his miss all his comments on these new commercial and HSF missions to Mars.  Our conversation then focused on the problems of sequestration and then John talked about heavy lift and SLS.  Our next discussion topic was Space Solar Power (SSP).  Here, John took us through a detailed analysis of why terrestrial solar and wind is not the best way to go, then he went through some of the characteristics of SSP and why it is the preferred way to acquire much of our energy. This is a detailed and at times marginally complex discussion but one you will want to hear.  In the end, he suggested we delay until we have the bigger launchers such as Falcon Heavy or bigger to make the launch component more economical.  His analysis included total energy needs for a city, Texas, the U.S., globally, etc.  It is a very instructive discussion.  Near the end, he said we should not put all our eggs in one energy source basket.  Listen to his solid explanation for this suggestion.

In our second segment, John talked about launcher reusability and more regarding SSP.  He introduced us to space logistics, commercial docking with cargo to the ISS, & the need for reusable deliveries, thus the RLV.  From here, he talked about fuel depots, mostly at Earth-Moon L1 and L2.  He explained the boil off problem, the cryogenic transfer problem, and the need for good insulation plus a cryo cooler.  Other issues in this segment addressed a lunar base, plausible time lines for accomplishing much of what our guest talked about, the Chinese space program and the complicated US-China relationship.  Near the end, a listener asked about a possible Texas spaceport per suggestions of SpaceX.  Tim called just before the end of the show to talk fuel depots, types of propellant for the depots and then he mentioned the VAPAK process (see http://ralph.open-aerospace.org/PDF/2009.04.14%20-%20HCG%20White%20Paper%20-%20VaPak%20Overview.pdf.)

If you have questions/comments, please post them on The Space Show blog.  To contact John Strickland, send your email through me at drspace@thespaceshow.com.