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Dr. Roger Launius, Friday, 11-29-13 November 30, 2013

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Dr. Roger Launius, Friday, 11-29-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2132-BWB-2013-11-29.mp3

Guest:  Dr. Roger Launius.  Topics:  We discussed Roger’s new book, “Space Shuttle Legacy: How We Did It and What We Learned,” space shuttles lessons learned, HSF & 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.

We welcomed back Dr. Roger Launius to discuss his new book, “Space Shuttle Legacy: How We Did It and What We Learned.”  During the first segment of this 1 hour 25 minute discussion, Dr. Launius provided us with the background behind this book which Dr. Launius and two other co-edited as a result of a suggestion Dr. Vigor Yang, chair of the School of Aerospace Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology and James Craig, emeritus professor the school.  Dr. Launius took us through the book’s contents including the title, subject, and authors of the contributions to this book. Our guest talked about the time we spent in LEO, that it was frustrating to many but it did create the situation where LEO is no longer a space frontier.  We also talked about how the shuttle paved the way for development of NewSpace and the emerging commercial industry.  This pertains to the Washington Post article we discussed. See the URL for this article at the end of this summary.  Listeners asked him questions about the Constellation program, the use of shuttle derived architecture for Constellation rockets, and capsules versus winged spacecraft.  We also talked about commercial opportunities emerging in LEO.  A listener asked about the cost of the Soyuz for American astronaut rides to the ISS and that it was still cheaper than launching a shuttle.  Roger brought up other concerns regarding the use of the Soyuz for transport to the station.  John from Ft. Worth called and said he thought shuttle was a creation of compromise. Dr. Launius was then asked about SLS & Orion which took us into human spaceflight and the difficulty in identifying a compelling reason for HSF.  We talked about inspiration as a compelling reason but our guest said it did not hold up as there were other ways to inspire students and people.  We spoke about the Inspiration Mars mission and Mr. Tito’s recent congressional testimony.  We then talked about Dr. Zubrin’s plan to partner up with Russia for a manned mission to Mars.

In our second segment, we talked about the ISS, NANORACKS and its success, emerging ISS commercial opportunities.  However, the possible retirement of the station around 2020 is worrisome.  John emailed in wondering if the Chinese landed humans on the Moon if it would make a difference in our space program.  I asked our guest for a few of the Lessons Learned from the shuttle and we talked more about it having been an experimental aircraft and what that meant.  We got questions about new technology, advancing using new technology, and then more comments about capsules and winged spacecraft.  Roger was asked to speculate on what would happen with a subcortical accident with injury or death and an orbital accident causing crew injury or death.  As the show was nearing its end, we talked about space advocacy, its effectiveness, and the lack of a unified voice in the space community. Finally, I asked our guest for specific positive and negative lessons learned from the shuttle years.  Note that the WaPo article referred to in the discussion comparing old space with NewSpace is at www.washingtonpost.com/sf/national/2013/11/23/which-way-to-space.

Post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog per above.  You can email Dr. Launius through me.

Sir Martin Rees, Monday, 9-2-13 September 3, 2013

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Sir Martin Rees, Monday, 9-2-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2079-BWB-2013-09-02.mp3

Your Amazon Purchases Can Help Support The Space Show/OGLF (www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm)

Guest:  Sir Martin Rees.  Topics: Interstellar travel, the future of space &science, quasars, life extension, Mars missions & 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.

We welcomed back Sir Martin Rees to discuss his chapter in the new book Starship Century: Toward the Grandest Horizon, edited by James & Gregory Benford.  Sir Martin’s chapter, titled “To the Ends of the Universe,” looks forward through time and centuries to address human spaceflight, eventual interstellar travel, life extension & more.  In looking forward, he levies criticism on the past. We talked about several of his comments regarding our past & current space program. Dr. Rees mentioned the need for life extension though for Mars he said we could do that without life extension but we should not fool ourselves as it will prove far less comfortable than Mt. Everest or the South Pole.  We talked about finding planets & the possibilities for life, then we switched to the discovery of quasars soon to celebrate its 50th anniversary. Listeners asked our guest about his comments that the political impetus for current & future space work seems to have been lost, especially in contrast to the Apollo era.  In his response, our guest suggested we need low cost and reusable launch vehicles given how costly everything is today.  He commented that mining asteroids did not make sense other than for ISRU purposes. Before going to break, he was asked about the UK government investment in Skylon which he supported.

In the second segment, we spoke about changes in the UK space activity over the past decade.  Sir Martin made comparisons with the UK, ESA & NASA, especially regarding long term planning & our very short one year budgets.  He suggested our budget process makes us unreliable partners in many respects.  Quasars were again a discussion topic, plus Sir Martin fielded a question from a high school student wanting to know how we know the laws of physics are the same throughout the universe.  Another listener wanted to know about science fiction as a leading indicator for science.  Dr. Rees suggested some excellent books for those interested in reading specific science fiction works. James Benford, editor Starship Century called to point out the excellent reading list in the back of the book, plus he offered us important comments about the book & authors. Near the end, Sir Martin was asked to look forward 10-15 years & tell us his thoughts.  His response focused on finding even more planets around the stars, identifying more threatening NEOs, & even more attention given to life extension issues.  The last two questions asked our guest dealt with the ISS living beyond 2020 asking if that was valuable and also the recent podcast by Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson that SpaceX would not be able to go to Mars.  Throughout the discussion, he mentioned the private sector doing things government could not, especially due to less risk averseness.

Please post your comments/questions for Sir Martin Rees on The Space Show blog.  You can reach him through me or his Cambridge website, www.ast.cam.ac.uk/~mjr.

 

Hu Davis and William (Bill) Ketchum, Sunday, 5-5-13 May 5, 2013

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Hu Davis and William (Bill) Ketchum, Sunday, 5-5-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2002-BWB-2013-05-05.mp3

Guests:  Hu Davis & William (Bill) Ketchum.  Topics:  Space infrastructure, SSP, SLS, Falcon Heavy, reusability, space policy and U.S. space leadership.  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 Hu Davis and Bill Ketchum to the program to discuss the need for space infrastructure development, SSP, and a space leadership policy by the United States. In the first segment of our 91 minute program, we talked about the need for space infrastructure development, reusable rockets, and space solar power.  Our guest Hu Davis has a Power Point presentation on SSP that will be uploaded to The Space Show blog summary so don’t forget to check it out on the blog.  I will also upload to the blog Bill Ketchum’s pdf paper,  “What Will America Do In Space Now?”  We discussed the history of various space infrastructure studies and efforts and the same for SSP studies, pointing out how new technologies, engineering methodologies, and sophisticated manufacturing have made many projects cost effective today when that was not the case years ago.  Our guests fielded several questions from listeners about the SSP business case, reusability and the SLS compared to the Falcon Heavy.  Doug asked about the use of in space resources & our guests suggested that for SSP for example, using in space resources could account for 90% SSP components.  Questions were asked about the land cost and the use of rectennas.

In our second segment, we talked about nuclear propulsion and tax/economic subsidies to our current terrestrial energy industry which make it harder to develop SSP.   We talked about the problem and the lack of viability for SLS.  Questions came in regarding on orbit propellant transfer and cryogenic transfer development.  As our program was ending, our guests talked about space education outreach, persuading congressional leaders and the public to support space infrastructure development, SSP , and more.

Please post your comments/questions for our guests on The Space Show blog and I will make sure they know about them.  You can email either of our guests through me at Drspace@thespaceshow.com.

what will america do in space now

2013 Solar High Master Draft for SWRI-1