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Dr. Jens Biele, Friday, 8-28-15 August 29, 2015

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Dr. Jens Biele, Friday, 8-28-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2543-BWB-2015-08-28.mp3

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Guest: Dr. Jens Biele. Topics: The Philae Lander & Rosetta Mission, DLR & ESA 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. 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 to the show Dr. Jens Biele of the DLR to discuss the Philae Lander as part of the Rosetta Mission to Comet 67P. During the first segment of our 1 hour 27 minute discussion, Dr. Biele summarized the Rosetta mission going back to its planning and development days, the flight to Comet 67PM and the Philae Lander’s anchor landing failure which he talked about at length. He also talked about communications from the lander to the orbiter and the narrow window for successful communications. We talked about solar and battery power, the type of data it can still transmit and related issues. Later, he was asked about other forms of propulsion including ion thrusters and advanced propulsion, plus he was asked if it would have been better to power the spacecraft by an RTG. He summarized some of the trades involved in making these types of decisions so don’t miss the discussion. BJohn asked about other DLR missions so MASCOT was discussed and later he discussed AIDA and AIM. As part of this discussion flyby missions were detailed and trojan asteroids were discussed. The subject of searching for life came up along with the discovery of organic molecules. Near the end of the segment, Roger from Rutgers asked if they considered Philae a success. Don’t miss his answer to this one. Other topics in this segment including drill samples, mission operating cost considerations, launcher choices and the shape of 67P which was a puzzle yet to be explained.

In the second segment, I asked our guest about the extremely long mission planning and design times coupled with the very long flight time and how that impacted people wanting to work space projects. As you will hear, it is not much different in Europe than here in the States with the same issues with NASA missions here. BJohn asked additional questions about future DLR missions and robotic exploration. This is the discussion that talked about both the AIDA and AIM European missions. Listener Helen asked about general European public support of ESA and space. You might be surprised by what our guest had to say in response to Helen so don’t miss it. In this context, Dr. Biele talked about ESA PR and its limitations and constraints. Toward the end of our program, he talked about human spaceflight, referenced Mars and going to Phobos as an initial part of human Mars exploration. When I asked our guest for closing comments, he said “If you dare you win. Take Some risks.” His final comments were ” Landers are cool!”

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above. You can reach Dr. Biele through me or his DLR website.

 

Michael Paul, Penn St. Lunar Lion, Monday, 3-25-13 March 26, 2013

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Michael Paul, Penn St. Lunar Lion, Monday, 3-25-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1980-BWB-2013-03-25.mp3

Guest:  Michael Paul.  Topics:  The Penn State Google Lunar X Prize entry, the Lunar Lion.  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 Michael Paul to the program, the leader of the Penn State Google Lunar X Prize team, the Lunar Lion.  For more information, visit their team website, http://lunarlion.psu.edu.  Michael brings to the table his experience with NASA and the Applied Physics Lab at John Hopkins as he was the spacecraft systems engineer for the NASA Messenger mission.  During the first segment of our 95 minute program, Michael talked about the Lunar Lion project.  We discussed launch contracts and vehicles, secondary payloads, landing sites, hoppers as opposed to rovers, and what happens to the hardware at the end of the mission.  We talked about the Penn State students working on the project and listeners and I asked questions about his experiences on Messenger being applied to a GLXP project.  The listeners seemed to think this was a step or two down but listen to how Michael explained lessons learned and applications to the Lunar Lion project.  We also talked about funding for their project and that if they win, the money goes to Penn State to endow further space related research and students. We also had a treat in the first segment in that Michael’s 10 year old son was with him. We invited him to the program and it appears we may have a future space guru in the making!

In the second segment, we talked about space education and general audience space enthusiasm and awareness given Michael’s public talks.  He had some interesting comments and experiences to share with us.  We also talked about potential regulations adversely impacting their mission, sample returns, lunar activities and such.  Charles called to talk about up and downstream communications and the use of lasers.  Spacecraft quality control was another issue along with the development of commercial tools for a much broader application than the Penn State GLXP entry.  He also mentioned efficiency in spacecraft design and management but used the term, “a frugal approach.” He explained the difference between frugal and efficiency in terms of spacecraft design & management.  As our program ended, we talked about thermal protection, radiation hardening, film and space subjects and topics.  Our final topic was oversight and 3rd party eyes on their project for review & quality control.

Post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can email our guest through the Lunar Lion website or derspace@thespaceshow.com.