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Dr. Paul Spudis, Monday, 1-19-15 January 20, 2015

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Dr. Paul Spudis, Monday, 1-19-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2396-BWB-2015-01-19.mp3

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Guest:  Dr. Paul Spudis.  Topics:  Science, ARM, 2016 elections & space policy, return to the Moon 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 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 Dr. Paul Spudis for this 1 hour 52 minute discussion.  Note that we lost our phone connection with Dr. Spudis several times in the second segment.  I’ve removed the dead air and related time sequences but you will know when we lost the connection.  Each time we got Dr. Spudis back on the line we then started where we were cut off. No discussion comments were lost. I apologize for the inconvenience.  In Part One, I asked Dr. Spudis how he assessed a change in space policy that might include a return to the Moon as a result of the 2016 presidential elections.  Its an interesting space policy and historical discussion you don’t want to miss.  I then directed our discussion to the article Dr. Spudis wrote on his blog, http://www.spudislunarresources.com/blog/overthrowing-science, “Overthrowing Science.”  I urge you to read this article as we spent the balance of the first segment discussing his observations and perspectives and the order of scientific development and progress.  As we approached the end of the segment, I asked Paul how we could protect ourselves from the misleading and manipulative information often presented to us as science.  He offered a few suggestions including the need to be skeptical & to do at least basic due diligence on the subject from a variety of sources.

In the second segment, we turned our attention to an article,  http://www.theverge.com/2015/1/19/7560263/nasa-asteroid-redirect-mission-politcal-suicide, “Is NASA’s asteroid mission the agency’s political downfall?”  For about half of this segment, Paul went into detail on the ARM, why it was problematic at best, the constraints of such a mission, and more.  For those interested in the ARM, this is an exceptionally detailed discussion so don’t miss it.  Listeners then wanted to return to classic Dr. Spudis so the lunar questions started coming in via email.  Doug sent in a few emails asking about lunar volatiles, LCROSS, and the use of lunar solar panels for the energy of a lunar habitat.  Paul said initially the power would be solar but it would have to evolve to nuclear fission reactors.  BJohn wanted to know about the Lunar Resource Prospecting Rover plus he asked questions about lunar results from asteroid hits.  Tim asked about a reusable lunar shuttle and Dr. Kiehl asked lunar mining and crater questions.  Several other listeners sent emails comparing terrestrial geology to lunar and Martian geology, even asking if studying petroleum geology in grad school would be relevant to space planetary geology since the person wanted to work in the space industry.  Toward the end Paul was asked about the progress of cislunar development.  I asked our guest for closing comments so again, listen sharply as he had important things to say for us all.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above.

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Dr. Dennis Bushnell, Tuesday, 7-23-13 July 24, 2013

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Dr. Dennis Bushnell, Tuesday, 7-23-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2055-BWB-2013-07-23.mp3

 

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Guest:  Dr. Dennis Bushnell.   Topics:  We discussed Dr. Bushnell’s paper, TRL for space development & how best to move forward with civil space.  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.

We welcomed back to the program Dr. Dennis Bushnell, the NASA Langley Research Center Chief Scientist.  Dr. Bushnell discussed his paper, “Advanced-to-Revolutionary Space Technology Options-The Responsibly Imaginable.” which can be downloaded at http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/20130011698_2013011376.pdf.  In the first segment of our 1 hour 26 minute show, Dr. Bushnell summarized the findings in his paper and talked about how we are still building on technologies from the 50’s and 60’s that were based on “living better with chemistry” and ICBMs.  We began talking about advanced propulsion including nuclear, but our guest made it clear throughout our discussion that what was needed was a reduction in the cost of space access by a magnitude of 10, not by two which is what is happening with new commercial rockets coming on line.  In fact, later in the show when discussing commercial space, Dr. Bushnell was clear that to close a commercial space business plan the reduction in launch costs by a factor of ten was absolutely essential!  I asked our guest to tell us where the bottlenecks were and he said it was in the culture & big cultural changes were required to move forward.  He also talked about the need to experiment and try lots of options and ideas, to triage them, down select, fly them, and choose the best based on the engineering process he described.  We talked about the low technology readiness level (TRL) of many of today’s space ideas and technologies, that we have become focused on instant or near instant gratification but that the process he was talking about would extend over a 25 year period.  Given this, his paper is a frank and factual discussion of many of our space industry segments, a no nonsense, no Kool Aid TRL analysis of much of what we talk about and say we can now do in space or will be doing in the near term.  Safety was discussed, including microgravity, radiation, plus a mention of unknowns regarding what we already know about gut bacteria exposed to radiation given our limited amount of research on this topic to date. A listener asked him about physics as a main reason for space exploration and contrasted that to settlement as the main reason for HSF. Another listener asked him about his mentioning USAF comments that indicated space was a mature and declining industry.  We began talking about commercial space, but we talked about it through the second segment as well.  In this segment, Dennis talked about how we have created economic growth in the past but now we have not only the challenge of economic growth but sustainable jobs and sustaining our standard of living.  Terraforming Mars was discussed as part of our discussion about Inspiration Mars and Mars One HSF missions to Mars.  As this segment ended, a listener asked him about suborbital space and citizen science projects.

In the second segment, John Hunt called in to talk about the high cost of many advanced space technologies, plus he wanted updates on LENR (this used to be called cold fusion).  Dr. Bushnell had much to say about LENR and it potential, we talked about Rossi, and the NASA work being done to better understand LENR effects. With an understanding of it, funding would not be as big a problem as it is today.  He also said LENR had the potential to be transmutational.  Our guest suggested that for more information, we visit the Larsen LENR slideshow:  www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/slideshows.  Again, he pointed to cultural issues as major stumbling blocks to this research.  In returning to the focus of his paper, he said there was no shortage of ideas but the culture was preventing them from being tried, tested, and exploited.  Rocket reusability was brought up, our guest mentioned the SpaceX Grasshopper work, and he was asked about SLS and fuel depots.  I asked about BLEO issues and radiation.  In response to another question, he said that were he the space guru, he would focus on “energy” and structural materials. You will want to hear this discussion. Later, Tim called from Huntsville about radiation and HSF to Mars, as well as the economics of the Big Dumb Booster.  I asked Dennis about the target audience for his paper and he said it was meant for NASA and the world since space fairing is a world endeavor. He again talked about potential revolutionary technologies which are needed and which would benefit all of us.  He repeated that we must do the difficult and take the risk and invest.  We also need to look forward with multiyear planning.  Near the end of the program, Dennis was asked about space elevators which he was not enthusiastic about.  Again, he repeated that we needed to make investments to raise our TRL levels.  At the end, I asked why space does not rise to importance in presidential campaigns & elections.  He said space was very good as an Earth utility but beyond that, there was no clear basis for most of it and that was the problem. Don’t miss his comments on this topic.  Our final topic was his assessment of commercial space given his years spent working on it with NASA including budgets into the hundreds of millions to find a way to close a commercial space business case for commercializing the ISS and other things.  This is a very important short discussion, don’t miss it.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can email Dr. Bushnell through me or you can find his address using the NASA email locator.