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Open Lines, Sunday, 12-28-14 December 29, 2014

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Open Lines, Sunday, 12-28-14

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2383-BWB-2014-12-28.mp3

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Guest:  Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston; Topics:  We discussed a variety of topics ranging from advanced technology, movie reviews, Spaces & Mars, Orion.  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.

Welcome to our last Open Lines program for 2014.  We discussed a variety of topics over the course of our 2 hour 15 minute program.  While there were actually two breaks, I will write this summary from the perspective two segments.  In the first segment, I made several announcements including remembering Space Show guests and notable space industry professionals who passed away this year.  I also talked briefly about my recent Aerojet Rocketdyne tour and an article that appeared in the Orlando Sentinel under the headline  “SpaceX plans for lots of launches, then on to Mars.”  You can easily find this article using your favorite search engine.  I also forgot to mention that SLS Debate guest Rick Boozer published an article which may interest you, “Why do the major news media exempt NASA from critical investigation?”  You can read his article a  http://linkd.in/1AXvwBs.  An early email was received from Carl asking what I thought of the known plans for Elon and SpaceX to go to Mars.  I was then asked about some current movies which I gave my opinion on, then Marshall called to note the absence of technology discussions on the Sunday television talk shows.  We talked about technology in general, the apparent focus for many people away from technology, including many in the media.  John called in from Ft. Worth regarding the SpaceX article about going to Mars.  He focused on the probable high costs of developing the new rocket and its engines plus other costs.  He suggested a 15-20 year timetable.  Doug both emailed in and called to talk with John on another line and they had a nice little debate about what John was talking about.

In our next segment, Jeff from Tucson called in to talk about this being the year of the human spaceflight space capsule and the Orion space vehicle.  Due to Jeff not seeing the start of the development of the full Orion spaceflight system, he questioned the type of missions Orion could fulfill.  Doug called back to debate Jeff and they both had much to say about future Orion missions and the development of the Orion system.  I told Jeff what Orion said on its website and looked for the development timeline for the full system but could not find it.  I did take issue with Jeff’s conclusions about Orion but of course much will depend on the continued development of the project with all its systems as well as SLS.  Tim called in to talk more about Elon and SpaceX. Our final caller Dwayne, mentioned CNN doing a technology episode (see http://globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com/2014/12/23/can-man-create-a-sun).  Dwayne also mentioned the recent India spaceflight test launch for components a human spaceflight mission.  Dwayne brought up some interesting facts about the test flight, hardware development and the Indian program.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog above.  You can reach any of the callers through me.

Webinar: SLS Debate with John Hunt, Rick Boozer, Sunday, 11-16-14 November 17, 2014

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Webinar: SLS Debate with John Hunt, Rick Boozer, Sunday, 11-16-14

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2357-BWB-2014-11-16.mp3

http://vimeo.com/channels/thespaceshow — Video

 

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Guests:  Webinar with Rick Boozer, John Hunt.  Topics:  Our guests debated the merits of the SLS rocket.  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 Rick Boozer and John Hunt to the program for our special WEBINAR SLS Debate.  You can hear the audio only for this debate as you would any Space Show program.  The video can be found on our Vimeo Space Show Channel, http://vimeo.com/channels/thespaceshow.  Regarding the video, my microphone lock was not working so you will see the mic swing to in front of my face from time to time.  Also, I look down a bit as I take notes to be able to summarize  the discussion.  These issues will be corrected for the next webinar. Rick’s book on the subject, “The Plundering of NASA: An Expose” is available on Amazon.  If you purchase the book and I hope you do, please use the OGLF/Space Show Amazon portal so Amazon will make a contribution to TSS.  Instructions are on the website, the blog, and all program archive summaries.

During the first segment of our two hour webinar, both John and Rick made five minute opening statements followed by a 2.5 minute rebuttal of the position statement by the other guest.  Rick Boozer does not support SLS and John Hunt does support it.  John went first, putting forth a good summary of why he supports SLS, the benefits it provides, and the importance of the project.  Rick’s opening statement outlined why he opposes the SLS rocket, calling it an “existential threat.”  He also said SLS was a “rocket to nowhere.”  The opening statements provided the basic positions for both guests as they debated all aspects of SLS so do carefully listen to their respective position comments.  We took both calls and emails from listeners.  Evon emailed in wanting to know what the money saved from SLS would best be spent on.  John pointed out that there was no assurance that any savings would even be spent on space let alone his priorities.  While Rick agreed, he did list several projects he felt far more deserving of funding, including using the funds to speed up the commercial crew program since it has never been funded to the level requested by the President.  Rick took the opportunity to bring up cost plus contracting and why it was not suitable for a more mature manufacturing project, instead being best suited for R&D projects.  He said that was a driver in the high cost of SLS.  In contrast, John cited his aviation experience with the A12 and P7 aircraft using fixed price contracts, cancellations, and more.  Dr. Doug sent in a note asking about the fundamental need for a heavy lift rocket.  Our guests had a different take on Doug’s question so listen to how they answered it.  Rick pointed out the advantages of the SpaceX Falcon Heavy as compared to the initial SLS version.  In fact, comparisons to Falcon Heavy plus future SpaceX plans and public remarks made by Elon Musk were cited frequently by Rick throughout the program.  John, while applauding the SpaceX accomplishments so far, strongly suggested that we see what the performance actually is on the SpaceX  rockets yet to be tested & flown.  John said we should not be in a hurry to cancel SLS in favor of unproven and as of yet nonexistent technology.  Tim from Huntsville called during this segment to inquire about SLS in light of Falcon 9 success, reusability success and more.  John suggested that reusability would be an important step forward but wanted to wait to see what it looked like when & if it becomes operationally successful.

In the second half of our webinar, Dr. Doug called & inquired about both the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy as compared to SLS.  Rick referenced an Elon Musk MIT video talk, www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/elon-musk-mit-interview-video-24-oct-2014.  Rick referenced this talk several times during this segment.  Rick also said SLS would not be going anywhere as there was no budget for its completion.  He cited the references to back up his claims.  Doug also inquired about public/private partnerships, ULA working with Blue Origin, and ULA with Masten.  Andrew sent in an email asking each guest to outline a viable sequence of launch vehicle development and payloads using what hardware.  John took the opportunity to reply to Rick’s budget comments and said there was no way to know what a future congress and administration would do and he listed the rational for keeping SLS going given our state of uncertainty with many space and international issues.  Jerry called from Florida to inquire about the SpaceX super heavy rocket with methane engines as well as the possibility of using a Dragon as a lander.  Adrian emailed a question to our guests wondering if the Chinese lunar program would create a space race or urgency here in the U.S.  Rick then talked about the likelihood of SpaceX getting to deep space before NASA & this would be an embarrassment for NASA and the SLS/Orion gang.  John did agree that if that happened, it would be an embarrassment for NASA.  Kirk emailed in asking Rick about his opening statement when he said SLS would cause the US to rely on Russian in ways other than eating into the commercial budget. He wanted Rick to tell us the other ways such Russian reliance might unfold.  Listen to how Rick responded to Kirk’s question.  Each of our guests provided us with an excellent five minute closing statement.  Rick said the situation was very serious and had the potential to adversely impact the prominence and leadership of the U.S.  Don’t miss his concluding comments.  John reminded us that SLS was the program of record approved on a bipartisan basis, that it was important to have heavy lift capability, and that it preserved skills, work force talent, and needed capabilities for the nation for times when space would be better appreciated & valued.  He said the problems with SLS were all solvable & would be solved as the project moved forward.  Rick quickly got in a question on what capabilities were needed and being preserved!

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

Gwynne Shotwell, Friday, 3-21-14 March 21, 2014

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Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX, Friday, 3-21-14

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2212-BWB-2014-03-21.mp3

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Guest:  Gwynne Shotwell.   Topics:  SpaceX, their goals, mission, & launch vehicles.  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 Gwynne Shotwell, President & Chief Operating Officer of SpaceX back to the show for an hour discussion & Q&A from the listeners.  During the first hour segment of this 72 minute program, Ms. Shotwell started out with me asking questions prior to opening the program to the listeners.  I inquired about using Brownsville, TX as a spaceport, SpaceX qualification requirements & timelines to fly sensitive USAF costly spy satellites to orbit, reusability, the possible use of Falcon & Dragon for a lunar mission, and fast tracking Dragon for HSF given the problem with Russia, the Crimea, and the Ukraine.  Gwynne told us about New Dragon and modifications to it and theCRS-3 Dragon contamination concerns for the upcoming launch on March 30.  About 20 minutes into the discussion, I opened it up for listener emails and phone calls.  I did have some audio issues with the toll free line so I apologize in advance for them but all the callers were clear and understandable as the problems concerned the toll free line ringing.  Listner questions addressed launch pad modifications for larger rockets, the SpaceX Raptor, reusability, possible payload penalties with reusability, propulsive landings, and reusable launch vehicle trajectories.  One listener asked our guest about possible markets for the bigger Falcon heavy lift launcher, Falcon XX.  We learned that this size rocket was for human transportation to Mars.  Gwynne fielded several questions about Falcon and Dragon on lunar missions.  While not opposed to lunar missions, SpaceX does not want to be distracted from their primary objective which is Mars.  Another listener asked about pricing and secondary payloads, the launch abort system, then I asked about SpaceX near term challenges and longer out challenges to 10-11 years from now.  Our guest was asked about berthing and when SpaceX would dock with the ISS.  Later in the segment there was a question about competition in the launcher industry, if SLS was viewed as competition, using a Falcon for a Europa or Titan mission, & the difference between Air Force requirements and special NASA requirements.  As the segment was drawing to a close, a high school student asked about internships at SpaceX.  Gwynne also talked about how valuable & important their relationship with NASA has been and how NASA has been a large part of their success.

In the very short second segment, I went over the upcoming Space Show schedule and let the audience know several dates when there would be no programming due to Easter & my personal schedule.

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