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Tom Olson, Tuesday, 12-29-15 December 30, 2015

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Tom Olson, Tuesday, 12-29-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2613-BWB-2015-12-29.mp3

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Guest: Thomas (Tom) Olson. Topics: 2015 in review, 2016 space events, best and worst space events of the year. 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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm. For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

We welcomed back Tom Olson for his traditional annual year in review show, this time for the year 2015. During the first segment of our 1 hour 45 minute discussion, I asked Tom to start off with the worst space event for 2015 rather than the best. Interestingly, he said it was the fact that another year has gone by without our flying people to space, either orbital or suborbital. This opened up a discussion about disappointments in the suborbital industry other than for Blue Origin which got the best grade along with SpaceX for their landing their rocket back on the pad after making it to space. As for the best, Tom mentioned several “bests” during the show but started out with the new commercial space legislation recently signed into law, specifically the part about funding commercial crew and U.S citizens being able to extract resources from asteroids. He spoke about the launch industry in general saying this was a near record year with 87 total launches. He talked about the ISS extension to 2024, commercial projects on the station and he said it would be better to design a commercial station properly than to try and commercialize the ISS. Tom then mentioned several entrepreneurial companies worth noting and watching including Planet Labs, Spire, Made In Space, also Sierra Nevada with the continuation of its Dream Chaser space vehicle. Listener Robert asked if his views on space solar power had changed in 2015. Tom said no but listen to his explanation. I asked Tom for the top space leaders of 2015. He had trouble naming a few other than Bezos and Musk. He said there were no heroes. All of the space men and women were heroes. Jeff from Denver asked Tom if he changed his mind on SLS/Orion from previous years. Again, Tom said no but listen to his full explanation. Another listener asked him if he thought 2016 presidential politics would influence space policy. Again, he answered with a no. Ft. Worth John called to talk about artificial gravity experiments that were needed, Falcon 9 landing the 1st stage successfully, plus he asked when the Falcon Heavy would fly.

In the second segment, Luis from Venezuela asked Tom about small scale laser beaming of power from powersats to landers and assets on the lunar surface. Next up was Dr. Lurio who put in a plug for Made In Space for a 2015 outstanding company award, then he talked about XCOR, responding to some of the recent management changes in the company plus the comments Tom was making about the company. Tom further addressed Made In Space and mentioned a 3D bioprinter. Here is the link to the story he mentioned about the bioprinter, http://medcitynews.com/2015/08/watch-out-organovo-biobots-launching-new-line-of-low-cost-3d-bioprinters. Tom spoke more about the Bigelow ISS BEAM Module experiment for later in 2016, then talked about the success of deep space exploration, JPL, and more. He mentioned running water on Mars, Cassini and Titan photos, New Horizons and Pluto and the Dawn Mission to Ceres. He also gave credit to Rosetta and the Comet 67P mission , then commented on the disappointment about the delay in the Insight Mars mission. Tom mentioned Putin’s reorganization of the Russian space industry to just Roscosmos, then he said the weirdest event of the year was the exoplanet discovery of the mysterious dimming in light value with some in the media reporting the possible discovery of alien ruins (see http://news.discovery.com/space/alien-life-exoplanets/has-kepler-discovered-an-alien-megastructure-151014.htm). Near the end of the program, Tom talked at length about important changes in the New Space Business Plan Competition. A listener then asked him about space films for 2015 and Tom commented on The Martian and television science fiction programming. He also mentioned the twins study on the ISS was nearing its end and Scott Kelly had set a record for the most time spent in space by an American astronaut. Before the show ended we talked about one way trips to Mars, Mars One and then Tom predicted that Mr. Musk will get to Mars before NASA. He concluded by saying that 2015 was an inspiring year for space on all fronts.

Please post your comments/Questions on TSS blog above. Happy New Year to all of you. Keep it safe, have a great celebration and I wish you all a terrific 2016! Thank you again for your Space Show support.

 

Space Show Annual Year In Review Program, Sunday, 12-27-15 December 28, 2015

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Space Show Annual Year In Review Program, Sunday, 12-27-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2612-BWB-2015-12-27.mp3

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Guest: Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston; Topics:  Annual review for space for year 2015.  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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

Welcome to our annual Open Lines Annual Year In Review program for 2015.  As it turned out, we did the 2 hour 10 minute program without a break as calls kept coming and we kept going with the program.  Before taking listener calls, I updated everyone on the new website’s development.  We started with listener calls with Jerry’s call about seeing the Falcon 9 land the first stage from his porch in Merit Island, not far from the SpaceX launch and landing sites.  He described both the launch and the landing for us from his perspective of being there, plus he talked about potential and future SpaceX rockets and launches.  As it turned out, the overwhelming winner for the best 2015 space event was the SpaceX landing of its first stage back at the Cape.  While there was lots of discussion about the future economics of the project, reusable economics and more, including the specifics of this flight that made it perfect for the landing demonstration, there was overwhelming support for SpaceX and reusability.  Several listeners even called to talk about reusability with the Falcon Heavy, they described what they thought was the customer profile for reusability, we talked about risk vs. reward ratios, payload mass and possible pricing strategies for the “used” rocket launch and what the competition may do as a result of this excellent SpaceX success.  As for planetary missions for 2015, hands down for New Horizons and Dawn going to Ceres.  We had a few votes for Comet 67P and some mention of Kepler.  Doug, during his call, mentioned that for 2016 there might not be much happening in planetary science but he did refer to the JUNO mission which makes it to Jupiter on July 4, 2016.  John Hunt called and in addition to talking about reusability and SpaceX, we talked about the new movie Star Wars.  That too was a popular topic for the show. John and I pointed out lots of similarities to the earlier Star Wars and what seemed to be technology that had not advanced much since the initial Star Wars movie.  Another listener emailed in with the technological advances in the fighters and other systems in the new Star Wars movie so there was tech advancement though I don’t think it was easy to spot.  However, we did talk in general about reaching technology plateaus and a few callers brought that up. I cited a current article from an Australian financial publication suggesting Apple Computer had “run out of ideas” which supported what some of the listeners were asking about re space technology.  Michael Listner called to talk about the RD180 engine and the Defense Authorization Act.  We also talked about ULA CEO Tory Bruno being on The Space Show for Tuesday, Jan. 5th.  John in Fremont called about New Horizons, Dawn and 67P, then he suggested he wanted to see SpaceX go to airline type flight service & operations as soon as possible.  He was challenged on that statement.  He also suggested a return to the show by Dr. Bruce Damer regarding his Shepherd Project.  Listener Rick suggested being on the lookout for 2016 for advances in small compact fusion technology with increased involvement from commercial investors. In addition to Focus Fusion (Lawrenceville Plasma Physics) and Polywell (Energy Matter Conversion Corp., he mentioned Lockheed Martin Skunk Works with their device.  Also,  Lightsail-B is one of the payloads expected on a Falcon 9 flight in 2016 and Phase Four’s CubeSat Ambipolar Thruster (CAT) plasma engine got $1 million from DARPA in November. Expected lots of development for 2016.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above.  You can reach any of the callers or emailers through me at drspace@thespaceshow.com.

 

Robert (Bob) Zimmerman, Tuesday, 12-15-15 December 16, 2015

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Robert (Bob) Zimmerman, Tuesday, 12-15-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2605-BWB-2015-12-15.mp3

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Guest: Robert (Bob) Zimmerman; Topics: Apollo 8, heavy lift, Moon-Mars, commercial space, and much 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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

 

We welcomed Bob back to the show for the last time in 2015.  During the first segment of the 2 hour program, Bob started our by remembering Apollo 8’s flight around the Moon on Christmas Eve, plus he talked about his new edition Kindle version of his classic book, “Genesis: The Story of Apollo 8.”  Bob spent some time retelling the full Apollo 8 story, how it came about that Frank Borman and crew decided to read the first twelve chapters of Genesis for the huge broadcast that was heard around the world, then he contrasted the astronaut’s freedom to choose their own words to what he expected would prevail today.  What do you think?  Post your comments about this on the blog.  After the Apollo 8 story, we discussed the return to flight by both Orbital ATK and SpaceX.  Bob shared his perspectives about this plus his rational for NASA wanting to work with possibly four companies for commercial spaceflight for cargo to the ISS.  Caller Richard Easton was next to talk about Apollo 8, then he wanted to know Bob’s thoughts on the need to first go to the Moon before going to Mars. This turned into a mini-discussion that included reference to the NASA Roadmap to Mars, the Elon Musk plans to go to Mars and why, along with giant rockets, with Bob commenting on why giant rockets would be inefficient and not necessary. His call consumed the balance of the first segment.

 

In the second segment,  I read an email from Doug asking about ISS plans and the possible impact on a Bigelow space station.  Jody emailed in a question asking about the space positions for the presidential candidates for both parties.  Bob limited his comments to Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Trump, Sen. Rubio, and Senator Cruz.  In the process of talking about their positions, he went after big government programs such as SLS and Orion.  Jack sent in a question asking about recent XCOR changes in management.  Bob had much to say about this, though it was more about the company in general and the industry.  He did take the opportunity to applaud Blue Origin.  Doug called the show and his call consumed almost all of the balance of the second segment.  Bob and Doug had a grand old time planning missions without heavy lift rockets using multiple launches of the F9, ion & solar propulsion.  I refrained from entering their discussion and let the two continue until we needed to move on near the end of the show.  Bob was again critical of SpaceX wanting to build giant heavy rockets for going to Mars saying FH was large enough and efficient.  The assumptions the two made were in my opinion very generous but at least we know where Doug and Bob stand on these issues.  If you have comments about their discussion make sure you post your comments on the blog.

 

Please do post all your comments/questions on TSS blog above.  You can reach Mr. Zimmerman through his website, www.behindtheblack.com.  You can reach any caller or emailer through me.

Open Lines, Sunday, 11-29-15 November 30, 2015

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Open Lines, Sunday, 11-29-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2594-BWB-2015-11-29.mp3

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Our annual campaign drive is now underway.  This fundraising campaign is critical to The Space Show’s operations for the coming year so please support us.  You can read our campaign letter at:

https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com/2015/11/27/oglf-2015-annual-fund-raising-campaign

Guest Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston.  Topics: Dark Matter, advanced propulsion, nuclear, Vasimir, CO2 emissions, lunar habitats.  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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

Welcome to our Open Lines program.  In the first segment of our 1 hour 56 minute discussion, I mentioned the Dark Matter article from The Economist as my friend sent me the actual article.  You can download or read it here:  www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21678126-powerful-gamma-rays-centre-milky-way-look-signs-elusive.  John from Fremont called and mentioned the article, then he talked about advanced propulsion, nuclear propulsion, and Vasimir. He wondered if NASA was serious about nuclear propulsion despite a slight increase in the R&D budget for it. He also wanted Dr. Judy Curry to return to the show in light of the Paris Global Warming Conf. going on this week.  I brought up our recent show on NASA’s OCO-2 satellite with guest Dr. David Crisp.  John from Ft. Worth called to talk advanced propulsion and much about Vasimir.  He also brought up global warming and unfortunately I let that topic take up way too much time on the show today.  We also talked about Dr. Jim Dewar coming back to the show on Sunday, Dec. 6 to talk about nuclear propulsion and his book giveaway which I will announce on the show next week.

In the second segment, I described Dr. Dewar’s book which will be the subject of the fundraiser for OGLF.  Dr. Doug from S. California called in to tell us he was considering a Kickstarter project to build a large inflatable simulated lunar hab, probably in Arizona.  Doug described his project, his lunar hab simulation model, his expectations, his cough estimates, plus he wanted Space Show listener feedback on the idea.  Post your feedback on the blog or send it directly to his email address which he gave out on air, or better yet, do both as listeners would like to know the feedback given Doug on this project.  Don’t miss his call and the opportunity to learn about this potential crowdfunding project.  Rick then emailed us to remind us that PISCES in Hawaii was a lunar simulation program.  Before the show ended, Doug emailed in about advanced propulsion, suggesting we start on programs using existing rockets and of course the Falcon Heavy.  I read his note on air, seems to me he is making sense though to really have an efficient and growing space program I believe we need to implement some form of nuclear propulsion, hopefully sooner rather than later.  Adrian emailed us about Vasimir, CO2 atmospheric emissions, and the use of solar power to offset high electrical costs in places such as California.  John from Freemont had the last word with a shout out for Blue Origin and an article on the www.theverge.com with Charles Miller explaining the differences in what Blue Origin did as compared to SpaceX recovering the first stage of the Falcon 9.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show Blog.

Wayne Eleazer, Monday, 11-16-15 November 17, 2015

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Wayne Eleazer, Monday, 11-16-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2586-BWB-2015-11-16.mp3

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Guest:  Wayne Eleazer. Topics:  Launch failures and why they happen.  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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

We welcomed Wayne Eleazer to the show to discuss the history and why of rocket launch failures per the many articles he has written over the years on these subjects for The Space Review.  In the first segment of our 1 hour 58 minute discussion, Wayne started us off responding to my question about the most dramatic launch failure he has seen or studied.  He talked about a spectacular Titan failure so don’t miss his story.  Michael Listner called and talked about many topics including Air Force mishap reports.  What Wayne had to say about the mishap reports and the Air Force candor regarding launch failures was very interesting and informative.  Wayne introduced us to the Oops Factor regarding failures, a concept he used in an earlier Space Review article.  This refers to one thing causing the launch failure but the people down the line with oversight responsibility all miss it or “oops!”  SpaceX and the Falcon 9 problems came up many times but here Wayne talked about the needed culture in a company to deal with launch failures, learn from them, and work to keep them from happening again.  He thought SpaceX was doing all of that.  He also talked about Orbital ATK and the Antares and their culture, then I asked him about the SpaceShip2 failure/accident.  Near the end of the first segment, Jay asked Wayne if military rockets had similar launch failure problems.  Wayne’s response about the military rocket motor, its reliability, testing, and costs was most illuminating.  As we learned, the military rocket motor stands alone in quality.

In the second segment, Wayne was asked if he could spot trends that cause launch failures over and over again.  He said no but listen to his complete answer.  He called this the “Predictables” and is completing a new Space Review article on this subject.  He listed several examples including his use of the Challenger loss as well as Delta and Atlas failures.  I asked him if on the military side, there were consequences for military personnel with responsibility and oversight duties, maybe a demotion, court martial, anything.  You might be surprised by his answer to this question.  We talked more about the Falcon 9 and EELVs in this segment, plus the old Thor and the Atlas.  Barry asked Wayne about Russian launch failures.  Wayne talked about the Russian culture and problems.  Near the end, he said EELV reliability was improving.  He made some additional Atlas and Falcon 9 comparisons, then I asked if there was an expected failure rate for these rockets.  Wayne suggested if a company survives ten launches, their odds for survival improve greatly.  Doug asked about fairing issues. Wayne talked about the ways that a fairing can open up and we talked about the recent Taurus failures due to fairing problems.  Doug followed up his question asking about the reliability for the Falcon Heavy.  Wayne had much to say about reliability and strap on rockets &the odds of a failure by strapping rockets together.  You might be surprised by what he said.  I asked him about modular all purpose, all mission rockets, complexity vs. simplicity, small start-up launch operations and the SLS.  In concluding the show, he talked about the value in understanding launch failures.  He talked about education on launch failures and why it has been so hard for people to be open minded and learn from rocket failures.  At one point, he mentioned an older German rocket company building an ugly pipe rocket, OTRAG.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog.  You can reach Wayne through me.

Robert (Bob) Zimmerman, Tuesday, 9-15-15 September 16, 2015

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Robert (Bob) Zimmerman, Tuesday, 9-15-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2553-BWB-2015-09-15.mp3

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Guest: Robert (Bob) Zimmerman; Topics: Space news & industry updates, commercial space happenings & 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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See http://www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm. For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

 

We welcomed back Bob Zimmerman for a two hour discussion plus updates on the space industry, including commercial space and NASA’s planetary science program. Bob started out by saying that the commercial space industry was heating up and getting more competitive, citing two significant stories. First, he mentioned the Blue Origin announcement about opening up a Florida launch site. Next, he addressed the SpaceX news regarding new commercial launch contracts with ARAB SAT and also the Falcon Heavy (FH) with demo launches to start in 2016. Bob spoke for some time on the FH, plus he talked about recent Russian Proton successes with their having said they found a systemic flaw in the Proton system but now that it was repaired, they expected more successful Proton flights. Virgin Galactic was next up for discussion and here Bob said the news was confusing. He spoke to the recent company announcements about Launcher One, then upon my asking, said that SpaceShip 2 seemed to be getting less attention for now. Bob mentioned the possible NASA use of a low cost Dragon capsule, then Jonathan Evans started in asking a series of questions, the first inquiring about what makes more business sense, Blue Origin’s expansion plans in Florida at Kennedy or SpaceX’s expansion plans in south Texas near Brownsville? After responding to Mr. Evans, Bob had much to say about ULA, the proposed Aerojet Rocketdyne buyout bid of ULA, plus the overall competitive nature of ULA in today’s rocket environment. Bob got a question from Jim who wanted to know his thoughts on XCOR given what he had said earlier about Virgin Galactic. Bob was not that positive about XCOR, joking that Charles Lurio would probably call in to rebut his comments. This prompted Dr. Charles Lurio to call in to “correct the record” and the mistakes Bob was making regarding XCOR and their progress. When Charles called in, he had much to say to set things straight.

 

In the second segment, our first call was from Dave in the Chicago area. Dave spoke about Blue Origin and ULA deals plus the ACES upper stage. Later, Bob went after the SLS again, mostly on its costs being too high. John from Ft. Worth called and the two of them had an interesting exchange on several related topics. Bob next mentioned the Rosetta mission and the Philae Lander, then he switched to the planetary science missions and programs. Bob had much to say that was positive on these missions including Cassini, New Horizons, and Curiosity. Later, Jane asked when space policy would enter the 2016 presidential race. Bob did not think it would enter the race, plus he did not want it to become a campaign issue. Listen to his comments and see if you agree with him. Tim called and mentioned that not everyone believes that SLS is bad as Bob had been expressing all night. Bob talked about SLS and science missions, the Decadal Survey, and its high operating and launch costs which hurts planetary scientists. As our program was drawing to a close, I asked Bob about the future of the ISS, Arianespace & what to look out for regarding private/commercial space.

 

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above. You can reach Bob Zimmerman through me or his website, www.behndtheblack.com.

 

 

Rand Simberg, Friday, 9-11-15 September 12, 2015

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Rand Simberg, Friday, 9-11-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2550-BWB-2015-09-11.mp3

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Guest: Rand Simberg. Topics: The Roadblock to Mars and Rand’s recent Kickstarter campaign success. 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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm. For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

We welcomed Rand Simberg back to the show to discuss his recent successful Kickstarter campaign, “Clearing The Roadblock To Mars.” Check it out at www.kickstarter.com/projects/1960236542/clearing-the-roadblock-to-mars. During the first segment of our 1 hour 32 minute show, Rand introduced us to the purpose of this campaign which was to show how much better and wiser NASA could use the funds now being spent on SLS. Or as Rand said throughout our discussion, to get more bang for the buck. Of course this assumes NASA would use the savings wisely. In this segment, Rand spent considerable time addressing the lack of SLS missions, the types of missions SLS might be used for but so far no such SLS missions have been settled on, plus he talked about having more efficiency by using smaller rockets, more launches and fuel depots. He also said we were not serious about space as evidence by the SLS program. Several listeners asked him about the trades between heavy lift and a smaller rocket, the risks involved, costs and more as this is a common debate topic in the industry. Rand said the debate would eventually be settled by market forces. I added in that the characteristics and performance of the rockets being used to settle the heavy lift or not question will also factor into any conclusions reached on this subject. Rand then talked about the Aerojet Rocketdyne announcement that they wanted to acquire ULA for $2 billion. This led to an additional discussion about the Atlas rocket, Russian rocket engines, Vulcan, and Blue Origin. He also answered specific questions about his Kickstarter project which he said was to show how much more could be done wit h the SLS money rather than spending it on SLS. In response to listener questions wanting him to compare SLS to Falcon Heavy, he said about three Falcon Heavy launches would equal one SLS launch. He advocated SpaceX do an Apollo 8 type of flight with the Falcon and Dragon but then said it probably would not happen because of their relationship with NASA.

As we started the second segment, Dr. Doug called from S. California to inquire about the technical capability of SLS and Falcon Heavy plus the ULA Vulcan medium to heavy lift rocket. In addition, Rand discussed the reusable Vulcan concept as compared to the SpaceX concept of landing on a barge. Rand was asked about the need for heavy lift for Mars. He made it clear he was not interested in Mars per se, instead, he wanted to lower the cost of space access to make it possible for anyone to go anywhere in the solar system, including Mars. Rand said over and over again that he was destination agnostic. He continued getting questions about heavy life vs. many smaller rocket launches. Rand said things like it was too risky to put all your eggs in one basket, i.e. the one big heavy lift launcher. Several listeners wanted to know the best path to try to influence the direction of space policy. Rand focused on congress and suggested visiting local congressional offices. Other listeners asked him about a possible increase in the NASA budget. He said money was not the issue for NASA. The issue was using the money wisely to do more with it than we are doing now. He repeated many times during the program that we were not going to have a replay of the Apollo program. Don’t miss his comments on this as they are scattered throughout our discussion. Near the end of the show, Rand was asked about the 2016 elections and space policy, rocket staging, even SSTO rocketry. When offering us concluding comments, he repeated we would not be repeating Apollo, that it was never that popular and much about it is a myth. Don’t miss what he had to say about the Apollo program and missions.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above. Rand can be reached through me or his blog, www.Transterrestrial.com.

 

Charles Miller, Friday, 8-14-15 August 15, 2015

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Charles Miller, Friday, 8-14-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2528-BWB-2015-08-14.mp3

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Guest: Charles Miller. Topic: The “Evolvable Lunar Architecture that Leverages Commercial Space Capabilities and Public Private Partnerships” study. 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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm. For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

We welcomed back Charles Miller to discuss in detail the recently released NASA Study, “Evolvable Lunar Architecture that Leverages Commercial Space Capabilities and Public Private Partnerships.” You can read and download the report, “Evolvable Lunar Architecture that Leverages Commercial Space Capabilities and Public Private Partnerships” at http://titan04.ksc.nasa.gov/shuttle/nexgen/Nexgen_Downloads/NexGen_ELA_Report_FINAL.pdf. During the first segment of our 1 hour 39 minute show, Charles introduced us to the study, the background as to why the need for the study, plus he said that to find an affordable way to move humans out into the cosmos there needed to be an affordable way to do it. He briefly summarized the history of efforts to return to the Moon since Apollo, then explained why this new approach, modeled after the COTS program, was so much better. Through the creative use of the public-private partnership program, returning to the Moon can be easier and more affordable. Charles was asked lots of listener questions including questions that addressed the TRL level of both NASA and the private companies to go to the moon, public and private risk taking, commercial competition, and the strategic use of fuel depots to further reduce mission costs. He explained their program step by step through three phases. Listener Dan asked a series of question about robots being serviced on the Moon, asking if the humans would be better placed elsewhere to control the lunar robots using low latency telepresence rather than humans on the Moon. Don’t miss how Charles responded to this series of questions that Dan emailed us. BJohn was also active with questions ranging from asking about the Lunar Mission One program to questions about the costs and assumptions used in the NASA study, even the use of GEO. Other listeners wanted to know about lunar settlement as part of this study, lunar habitats, and using L2 rather than the lunar surface. Listeners also asked Charles about lunar microgravity issues and radiation. Charles had the most to say about radiation issues. Later in the segment he said the plan called for a migration of the initial program to something like an international lunar authority modeled after CERN and modern airport authorities. Dan asked another question about getting astronauts off the moon in an emergency wondering if there would be greater safety margins if humans were not required on the lunar surface. Charles indicated that there would be a lunar escape system on the Moon. When questioned about the economics, it was clear that the study had in mind to facilitate human expansion BLEO so options not expanding the human presence BLEO were not options considered for the study. Todd asked if SLS was considered in their analysis. The answer was no as they only looked at commercial launch options, not government launchers. More questions came up about how the project would be financed relative to the NASA budget. Don’t miss this analysis and explanation.

In the second segment, BJohn asked about the Falcon Heavy regarding fuel depots. Charles said it was a LEO only launcher so not considered in their study. More listener questions came in regarding depots. BJohn also asked about the use of GEO. Charles explained why this was not an option. Eric and Charles had quite the email exchange about needing humans on the lunar surface. Charles said they were primarily there to repair and maintain the robots and equipment. Eric kept asking about using robots for the repair and maintenance but Charles said that technology was not available at this time. Their give and take was a good discussion of the subject. As Charles pointed out, since a commercial company would be on the moon with the robots, they would have every reason to advance their technology to be more cost effective so moving toward robotic servicing of the lunar surface robots would be something a company would be motivated to do to save on operating costs. However, that technology was not available today. Listener Josh wanted to know about other potential lunar businesses including lunar tourism. Charles was asked about lunar cubesats, then near the end he was asked about property rights and lunar resource exploitation. As the program was about to end, we talked about the political process and progress the study needed to make as it worked its way through the policy makers, Congress, and others. Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above.

You can reach Charles Miller through his company, NextGen Space LLC or me.

 

Jon Goff, Friday, 7-24-15 July 25, 2015

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Jon Goff, Friday, 7-24-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2512-BWB-2015-07-24.mp3

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Guest: Jon Goff; Topics: Altius Space-Machines updates, new projects, commercial space, fuel depots & 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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm. For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

We welcomed Jon Goff back to the show for Altius Space-Machine updates and more. Make sure you follow along with us at his website, www.altius-space.com. During the first segment of our 90 minute discussion, Jon brought us up on Altius activities since his last time as a guest on the show in March 2013. We discussed the projects listed on his website home page, Prospector, Lisa, the Robotic Manipulator, and EMBARC-2. I asked him for updates on Sticky Boom and how the new projects related to Sticky Boom. As you will hear, Jon and his team are engaged in several innovative projects. Listeners wanted to ask Jon about fuel depots so that topic contributed to both our first and second segments. Later in the first segment, Doug called to compare the Falcon Heavy with the use of depots, suggesting the Falcon Heavy would be more cost effective to LEO than using depots. This was an interesting discussion on this topic so don’t miss it. ISRU was discussed as was aerobraking coming back from the Moon.

In the second segment, Joe had the lead off question asking Jon if they were planning to engage in cubesats and Earth-imaging. Jon’s reply included a discussion of his Big Vision concept for his company and how he wants to contribute to the space industry. Carl in Tucson asked Jon about using Sticky Boom or one of other concepts to get rid of LEO space debris. Following that discussion, Jon told us about his Private Placement plans for his MAGE (Mechanical Assistant for Glovebox Experiments) project, where Altius is trying to adapt some COTS robotics and 3d vision solutions for use inside the Microgravity Science Glovebox on the ISS, and on the 3DOF STEM Arm testbed that they wanted to use for testing various Sticky Boom capture mechanisms on an air-bearing table. Another listener asked Jon about building launch vehicles for cubesats. Wayne asked about SBIRs, exceptions for those from outside the U.S. and foreign government funds for companies like Altius. As we were nearing an end to our program, I asked Jon for his five year forecast for the cubesat industry, then the same for his company. Jon had much to say on this topic, including talking about ADS-B ground stations, SpaceX, One Web, smallsats beyond LEO into MEO and GEO. As we were ending, Harry asked how independent Jon was from NASA policy, the administrator, etc. We concluded our discussion with Jon mentioning possible future hiring needs and his thoughts on having started up his own business five years ago.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above. You can reach Jon through his website, me, or the private placement address he gave out on air.

Jim Muncy, Monday, 7-6-15 July 7, 2015

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Jim Muncy, Monday, 7-6-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2502-BWB-2015-07-06.mp3

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Guest:  Jim Muncy:  Topics:  Space Policy, budget issues, company overviews, and 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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

 

We welcomed Jim Muncy back to the program to discuss current space policy and budget issues before the U.S. Congress, company updates, and much more.  During the first segment of our 1 hour 50 minute discussion, Jim provided us with the groundwork for most of our discussion by going back to the Commercial Space Launch Act of 1984, then the update to it known as the Commercial Space Launch Amendments Act of 2004.  He talked about both the House and Senate versions of the NASA and space budget bills and some of the differences between the two bills.  One difference which he explained in detail early in the second segment had to do with the learning period which is important for the developing industry.  Another difference between the two revolved around extending the ISS commitment to 2024 plus issues relating to BLEO space.  When asked if he thought the final bill would be signed or vetoed by the president, he said it was nonpartisan and he did not see problems getting it signed into law.  Listeners asked about funding SLS.  Much was said about SLS in both segments but one listener asked Jim why so many supported SLS given its shortcomings.  Jim explained the mindset of many SLS supporters in congress. As you will hear, SLS is hardly a black or white issue.  This discussion led to a related discussion on developing a new rocket engine, the issues involved, the competitors, methane versus other fuel, and more.  In particular, he used Alabama Congressman Mike Rogers as an example supporting is analysis of the situation.  Jim was asked about the impact of the Falcon 9 failure which led him to address the need for multiple launchers and competition.  Later, Alex asked him about his areas of concern regarding the pending budget legislation.  He talked about sequestration, spending caps, delays, and the problem with operating on a CR which is likely.  This is a lengthy but important discussion so don’t miss it.  Before the segment ended, Jim was asked about the lunar lander.  Jim then talked about the Flexible Path, Google Lunar XPrize, cislunar space development and Mars.  Jim advocated the need for public private partnerships, then he was asked about international partnerships.

 

In the second segment, we started with an email question from Doug inquiring about the Augustine Commission presenting an option for returning to the Moon with landers developed in a public-private program context.  After Jim’s response, I asked him to refer back to a comment he made in the first segment and to explain what was meant by the learning period.  This was an important discussion so don’t miss it.  As part of his response, he also provided a short overview of the suborbital industry and participants plus the orbital industry.  A good portion of this segment focused on the importance of the learning period.  Our last question of the evening was from Helen.  She asked Jim if it would be beneficial to ask political candidates in the 2016 races space related questions assuming they know nothing about space.  Jim supported the idea but he told us all to make the question broader than just what interests us in the space industry. He gave several examples of this.  What he said made sense to me so I urge all of you who get a chance to question a 2016 candidate, ask your space question the way Jim suggested.

 

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show Blog above.

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