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Dr. Charles Lurio, Tuesday, 11-10-15 November 11, 2015

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Dr. Charles Lurio, Tuesday, 11-10-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2583-BWB-2015-11-10.mp3

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Guest: Dr. Charles Lurio.  Topic:  Commercial Space law updates, NASA, SLS, HSF, space leadership plus 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 back Dr. Charles Lurio for this comprehensive commercial space update plus Dr. Lurio took a hard look at human spaceflight.  During the first segment of our nearly 1 hour 55 minute show, Charles started with the news that broke just before airtime that congress had approved the new commercial space legislation.  The House and Senate compromised on the learning period extending it to 2023.  Charles hit on some highlights of the bill but said he had not yet had time to read the final version since the news literally broke minutes before air time.  Other first segment discussion topics included the return to flight for Falcon 9 and the Cygnus which will launch on an Atlas 5 until Antares has a return to flight sometime early next year.  Charles talked about the new Russian rocket motor for Antares and its relationship to other major Russian rocket motors.  Next, we talked about the NASA delay for the commercial cargo awards and their letter to Boeing saying that the cargo version of the CST 100 was no longer under consideration.  Charles speculated that the delay might have been taken to allow for return to flight for the Falcon and for the Cygnus on the Atlas 5.  Paul in NY emailed Charles asking for him to tell us his favorite commercial space company and his favorite NewSpace company.  Charles said he loved SpaceX and commented on them moving the ground in the launch industry.  He said he has always been a fan of XCOR and gave us some update at to the XCOR progress and challenges, especially in their wing production.  Charles also said that the asteroid mining companies, particularly Deep Space Industries, were starting to attract foreign capital as he mentioned investment interest from the Czech Republic.  I asked Charles if he was satisfied with the way the industry was developing so far.  He said he was amazed with it and what has happened so far, but made the point that commercial space was far from being on easy street.  He then explained his comments listing examples to support his comments.  I asked him about the NASA Roadmap to Mars and he repeated back to me, you meant the “Jokemap” to Mars?  That should provide you with a clue as to the rest of the discussion on this topic.  Before the break, Don called from New Hampshire to talk about radiation, Brookhaven, and human spaceflight.  Charles and Don talked about shielding, the lack of real quality experiments plus finding out answers to other needed questions for HSF BELO including life support systems, microgravity, plus lots more. Charles concluded that NASA was not serious about space, something many guests have said over and over again in recent years.  Don said the system management was shortsighted.  Charles said what we needed was a new NACA, not so much NASA.  This remained a theme for Charles for the rest of the show.  Before ending the call, Don talked about Japanese radiation experiments and equipment that NASA won’t use, citing NE213 and a newer version, EJ301.

 

In the second segment, I asked Charles what would be a reasonable set of expectations for our commercial and HSF program given the state of comprehensive matters facing the US and the world at this time in 2015.  Charles had some very interesting things to say in response to this question which actually commanded most of the second segment.  A subtopic in this discussion was the subject of technology and technology development.  Again, don’t miss what he said about technology.  I asked Charles about the development of cislunar space and the Moon.  He would welcome both but listen to all of what he had to say about this because he repeated himself that we were not doing anything.  Doug in S. California called in with multiple questions for Charles about what was needed for a flyby to Mars and more.  It appeared to me that Doug was not getting what Charles was talking about though Charles kept saying that Doug was not asking the right set of questions.  In summary, I think Doug was suggesting technology advancements lowering costs for example, would compel policy makers and the public to support and create the space policy we seem to yearn for when this subject comes up on the show. Charles kept repeating that the technology to be used was not the issue. Instead, the issue was political in that there was no will to do things, no leadership.  Since this is something I have ranted about on many Space Show programs, I supported Charles on the leadership issue and I do believe that having the will to do something serious in space and having the leadership to actually get policies in place that can be implemented are much bigger problems than the technology or even the financial side of things.  Once the policy and will are there, implementation is next and that is when technology will be looked at and decided upon.  See what you think about this discussion with Dr. Doug.  Later, on the same subject, Charles said it was very difficult to change society attitudes.  Doug Messier emailed in comments that it was easy to rant on NASA but pointed out the slow going of many commercial space projects from suborbital development to rocket development.  Doug suggested that had progress been faster, leadership and some of the issues Charles was bringing up would be there and the industry might be different today.  Both Charles and I agreed with Doug Messier except the reality on the ground is what has to be dealt with and for which solutions are needed regarding moving the commercial industry and HSF forward.  As the show was ending, Charles said development would not and does not follow a predicted path.  He also said that it was possible for there to be “moments of great acceleration” that could jump us forward.  This subject has not come up in recent years on TSS but it is worth noting that one cannot count on or build project around the hope for serendipity to change something.  Great if it happens but no way can one count on or plan  on it happening.  In the end, Charles and I both said that there is far more leadership awareness today than yesterday. I suggested that from Space Show interviews, lots of bright people were focused on solving this problem and I had faith that it would be solved though I had no idea of a timeline or what the solution would look like.  Charles concluded that commercial space and HSF will continue to evolve incrementally over time on an unpredicted path.

 

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above.  You can reach Dr. Lurio through The Lurio Report at www.thelurioreport.com or through me at The Space Show address.

 

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Rex Ridenoure, Sunday, 7-26-15 July 28, 2015

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Rex Ridenoure, Sunday, 7-26-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2513-BWB-2015-07-26.mp3

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Guest: Rex Ridenoure; Topics: Ecliptic Enterprise overview & updates, LightSail program & mission, NewSpace & 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 Rex Ridenoure back to the show to discuss Ecliptic Enterprise, LightSail, the NewSpace Conference & more. During the first segment of our 1 hour 33 minute discussion. I started our discussion by asking Rex how Ecliptic got the LightSail contract from The Planetary Society. Rex relayed the story to us of their involvement with LightSail & I am sure you will find it interesting. This discussion led Rex to update us on Ecliptic activities with their size reduction program for their avionics and their work on cubesat projects. Rex talked about their customer and project base and why they don’t have foreign launcher contracts or relationships. ITAR!! He talked about their having been denied ITAR clearance in the past so they don’t even bother obtaining it anymore. Rex talked about some of their camera space projects including LCross, transmitting data back via the DSN and the limitations because their cameras could work all the way to Pluto and beyond but the data transmission rate and capacity to do that for video is not available. We then returned to the LightSail project which Rex described in some detail during the balance of our segment. Rex also has suggested we read the blog articles on LightSail via Jason Davis on The Planetary Society website. www.planetary.org/about/staff/jason-davis.html and look for his posts on LightSail. By the way, it is an excellent blog and I recommend you add it to your regular reading list.

 

In the second segment, Rex provided us with an overview of the SFF NewSpace Conference and I totally agreed with what he said having also attended it. In my opinion, it was the very best of all the SFF-NewSpace conferences I’ve attended since the late 90’s. As part of his summary of the conference, I asked his opinion on the Dr. Linda billings Scientific American article that attacked SFF, NewSpace, space settlement, etc. Here is the article in case you missed it: www.scientificamerican.com/article/the-inexcusable-jingoism-of-american-spaceflight-rhetoric. Let us know on TSS blog what you think of Dr. Billing’s article and what Rex had to say about it. Please be respectful and civil, no name calling, even if you strongly disagree with either Dr. Billings or Rex. Since our show ended, Shubber Ali, the original Space Cynic, posted a reply to Dr. Billings on the Space Cynics website. Check it out as I will add all of this to the Open Lines discussion for Sunday, August 2: https://spacecynic.wordpress.com/2015/07/27/the-inexcusability-of-poor-reading-comprehension. As the show neared the conclusion, Rex summarized key points & highlights of discussion.

 

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above. Rex can be reached through me or the Ecliptic website, www.eclipticenterprises.com.

Eric Berger, Monday, 4-26-15 April 28, 2015

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Eric Berger, Monday, 4-26-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2462-BWB-2015-04-27.mp3

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Guest:  Eric Berger.  Topics:  Space policy, NASA’s future, commercial space, human spaceflight challenges, & lots 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 Eric Berger to the program for a wide ranging discussion on US space policy, NASA, our space future, commercial space and more.  During the first segment of our 1 hour 37 minute show, Eric started the discussion by talking about his early interest in space, his contacting NASA as a child, getting back a great set of photos and other information and being hooked and excited about space ever since.  Some of the early topics in this segment included his surprise that we are not yet beyond low earth orbit with manned spaceflight, then he addressed why it is taking so long to go to Mars , why Mars is the next big step for humans and why going to Mars is so hard.  In his discussion of these topics, he referenced Elon Musk and the SpaceX Mars plans, even Mars One.  I asked Eric for his perspective on the NASA ARM mission which led to one of many discussion of NASA budget constraints and the idea that this or that project is all that can be done within the budget permitted by Congress.  Eric started getting lots of listener emails.  Jenkins wrote in saying that its not the budget that is the problems, the choices we make as a country regarding how we spend money that is the problem.  Eric then referenced the human spaceflight study released last year by the NRC regarding the likelihood that we will be living with tight NASA budgets for the foreseeable future.  Paul in New Mexico asked Eric about the impact of commercial space on policy and NASA.  Eric said it was an important impact so don’t miss his full statement.  Later in the segment, we talked about his seven part “Adrift” series last year and I asked him what his biggest surprise was in researching the articles for the series.  He said it was finding a shift in his view on SLS and that SLS could very well be an important part of our spaceflight future but that it needs to be funded to launch real programs.  He also said that maybe Falcon Heavy could do most of what SLS could do, especially in the Earth-Moon systems but that remains to be seen.  We then talked about the time it took to do various parts of Apollo compared to how much time it takes to do just about anything in space today.  Michael Listner called to talk about needing both NASA & commercial space and some realities involved in policy and space issues.  As the segment was ending, a Portland listener asked if competition with China might develop and force the US to spend more and do more in space.  Don’t miss Eric’s answer.

In the second segment, Eric was asked about space settlement being the goal and the purpose of our National Space Policy through a change in law per March Storm and other groups who are advocating this.  Eric was OK with space settlement but listen to his comments for the full context of his message.  He also said it was hard to figure out what to do with SLS but that some changes might be a full ten years out from today.  We talked about space technology advancements and then Gerald Driggers called in to say we had lots more work to do. For example, we talked about the need to fly a centrifuge in space to determine the gravity RX for humans.  The issue of the lack of space leadership came up from the White House down to the congress.  Many times our guest said it would take a change in leadership to get a change in space leadership but that just changing leadership does not mean the new leader(s) will care about or prioritize space.  Regarding commercial space, he went a bit deeper in this segment.  He said there was lots of commercial space activity but that NASA was still the center of it.  He made the case for the industry needing a broader base than just NASA.  I asked about a Europa mission and another listener asked he could articulate the Senator Ted Cruz view on space policy.  We talked timelines for humans to Mars and for a return to the Moon, he was asked if NASA should be eliminated in favor for a return to something like the old NACA, then Benny in Denver asked about the Texas spaceport facilities being developed for SpaceX and the Blue Origin facility.  As we neared the end of the program, Eric again stressed the difficulty in going to Mars, he looked back at our space history including Gemini 4, and he talked about the Obama policy from 2010 about not going back to the Moon though many in NASA do want to go back to the moon.  Bottom line was Mars around 2050.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog. You can reach Eric through me or the Houston Chronicle.

Dr. William Halal, Sunday, 1-5-14 January 6, 2014

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Dr. William Halal, Sunday, 1-5-14

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2157-BWB-2014-01-05.mp3

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Guest:  Dr. William (Bill) Halal.  Topics:  Space forecasting for the near and long term.  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 Dr. William Halal to our program for a 1 hour 48 minute discussion on predictions for both near and long term space development.  In our first segment, we focused on the near term predictions that mostly centered on continued growth of space commercialization and the emergence of space tourism.  Additional topics talked about in the first segment included the Chinese space program and its possible impact on the U.S. space program, heavy lift and SLS, the space media and its potential space tourism accident response, commercial activity on the ISS, and space entrepreneurism.  Dr. Halal also directed our attention to his website, www.techcast.org which will soon migrate to www.technicalglobal.com.  Listeners asked our guest about the biggest challenges facing both commercial space and space tourism, then our guest talked about big growth possibilities with solar satellites.  Issues were addressed regarding our congress, economics, and the tensions among all the players.

In the second segment, we talked about knowledge emerging as the powerful tool of the near to intermediate term.  Dr. Halal suggested tourism would be in place around 2015 and the commercial industry would keep developing to the 2020 range.  John called from Ft. Worth to draw comparisons to our early military and aviation history, suggesting the role of the government might be to continue developing hardware and infrastructure that would eventually enhance the commercial players much the way the military aircraft had dual use with the commercial industry.  John also had comments about asteroid missions which our guest brought up in this segment.  Dr. Halal mentioned the potential of interstellar travel around 2070 and the possibility of solar satellites coming on line much sooner.  We talked about going to Mars and the Moon and about Mars One and Inspiration Mars.  Doug was the next caller and he talked about depots and large rockets, specifically for missions BLEO and the Moon.  Doug brought up SpaceX heavy lift concepts, Martian terraforming, and SpaceX orbital human spaceflight around 2017.  As our program was ending, we talked about the rate of change going on in the world today and its impact on people in different age groups.  He said we all need to be prepared for a turbulent and transformative time as he does not believe current global systems are sustainable and will have to make way for new systems and programs.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog above.  You can contact our guest through me at drspace@thespaceshow.com or his website.

Sarah Cruddas, Friday, 5-3-13 May 4, 2013

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Sarah Cruddas, Friday, 5-3-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2001-BWB-2013-05-03.mp3

Guest:  Sarah Cruddas.  Topics:  UK space development, interests, commerce, and journalism, space tourism, China, space policy.  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 Sarah Cruddas to the program to discuss space development and policy from the British perspective.  Please visit her website, http://sarahcruddas.com for more information.  During the first part of our 90 minute discussion, we talked about space policy, science, and commerce from a British perspective.  Listeners asked many questions about the UK perspective on space mining via Planetary Resources, commercial satellites & Surrey Satellite Technology, plus NASA projects like the Kepler Space Telescope and the search for exoplanets.  We talked with Sarah about commercial space travel/space tourism with Virgin Galactic, especially since Sir Richard Branson is British.  Sarah was asked about UK entrepreneurial space ventures and the Isle of Man.  Sarah also covered the last space shuttle flight at KSC. She told us it was a very emotional experience.  We also talked about the British perspective on both the ISS & the Hubble Space Telescope.  Listeners asked our guest about space programs, interests, and policies in Germany, France, and ESA.  She told us that the UK participation in ESA was smaller than that of other countries so their space programs are less ESA-centric.  Sarah was asked about HSF to Mars including Mars One and the Inspiration Mars flyby mission.  Doug called in to ask about Skylon & I talked about the early space history with the British Interplanetary Society (BIS) and space planes.  Returning to the topic of space tourism, she said it was too expensive for most people in the UK but there were some who have signed up and are interested in the adventure.  We talked about STEM education in the UK & and compared STEM issues there to here in the States.

In our second segment, we talked about space debris or space junk.  We then talked economics and UK, European, and global budget issues.  Sarah made the case for the importance of continuing to invest in space and science despite these problems.  Don’t miss what she had to say about space, our future, and economics.  We also talked about space media and journalism in the UK & the need for the West to be in the lead in commercial space development.  We spent a good part of this segment talking about the Chinese space program, plus India’s program.  Other topics included N. Korean rocket launches, the Google Lunar XPrize, Yuri’s Night in the UK, and even ET’s!  I asked about the popularity of astronomy& telescope clubs in her area, and the popularity of the ISS.  Toward the end of our discussion, I asked our guest for a ten year perspective on space.  Don’t miss Sarah’s future vision which included mining, space tourism, space junk resolution, and the growth of the Chinese space program.  She talked about returning humans to the Moon – with China.  She also said that people see space leadership and progress being made but that it was more likely to come from the Chinese than with we Americans.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can contact Sarah through her website or me at drspace@thespaceshow.com.

Jerry L. Ross, Tuesday, 4-30-13 May 1, 2013

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Jerry L. Ross, Tuesday, 4-30-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1999-BWB-2013-04-30.mp3

Guest:  Jerry L. Ross.  Topics:  “Spacewalker: My Journey In Space And Faith as NASA’s Record-Setting Frequent Flyer,” HSF safety, NASA & space policy.  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 retired astronaut Jerry L. Ross to our program to discuss his new book, “Spacewalker: My Journey In Space And Faith as NASA’s Record-Setting Frequent Flyer,” space policy and leadership, HSF safety, and much more.  If you buy his book which I recommend, use this Amazon link as Amazon will make a donation to The Space Show/One Giant Leap Foundation: www.amazon.com/Spacewalker-Journey-Space-Record-Setting-Frequent/dp/1557536317/ref=onegiantlea20.  Please visit Jerry’s website for more information, www.jerrylross.com.  During the first segment of our 90 minute program, Mr. Ross spoke about the Space Shuttle & retirement, Constellation, returning to the Moon, going BLEO, the ISS, and his test flights on the B1 bomber.  This led us to talking about the safety test program used by NASA, the B1, and the private spaceships.  I asked if NASA was overkill in this area and if the privates would be able to engage in comprehensive flight safety testing with programs radically different from those NASA has used. You do not want to miss this discussion, especially when I asked about the complexities of the B1 as compared to a spaceship.  We talked about SLS, Orion, & Inspiration Mars which Jerry supports.  In response to an email from Becky, we talked about the NASA astronauts, the fact that there are more astronauts than flight opportunities, and the current situation for NASA astronauts.  Our guest mentioned two year training missions and when I inquired about that time period, we learned that it included learning Russian, training with ESA, Japanese, Canadian, and Russian hardware and more.  Jerry was asked if he rode on a Soyuz. He said no but was in a Soyuz and talked about his going on board MIR.

In our second segment, we started out asking him about faith which is part of the subtitle of his book.  Here again our guest had much to say so listen carefully to this discussion.  As Jerry was part of the team that recovered debris from the Columbia accident, I asked him about it. He told us about his experience in learning about the disaster, crew families and more.  This is a first hand accounting of getting the news and working with the families and the people involved in finding the debris.  Another topic discussed was on orbit construction, mainly with the private companies.  Jerry talked about this at length given his work in establishing how to do it for the ISS and actually doing multiple missions making and assembling parts in space.  We also talked about gender differences in these space walks.  Toward the end of our discussion, space leadership came up as did missions and goals.  The shuttle thermal tiles were discussed and he referenced tile damage on his Atlantis flight which was the third flight after Challenger.  This was an amazing story and luck was really shining on the Atlantis crew.

If you have comments/questions, please post them on The Space Show blog.

Dr. Philip Metzger, Monday, 4-8-13 April 9, 2013

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Dr. Philip Metzger, Monday, 4-8-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1991-BWB-2013-04-08.mp3

Guest:  Dr. Philip Metzger.  Topics: Starting industry in space for the coming space resource revolution re space mining robotics & 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.

We welcomed Dr. Philip Metzger to the program to discuss the topic of a coming space resource revolution because of the prospects for a rapid advancement of robotic industry in space.  Please visit his website at www.philipmetzger.com. During our first segment of this two hour five minute program, Dr. Metzger explained the need for space resource usage as a result of a growing Earth population, increasing energy demands, industrialization & an overall feeling of being “squeezed” regarding future demand and resource usage.  From this point, he took us through the technologies, advancements and some visionary plans for setting up a commercial industry in space for space mining robotics and ISRU technologies which are available today.  Dr. Metzger was clear in telling us that the NASA charter was about exploration, not starting up space industry.  We then talked about the ways that industry can access the advance technology created by the NASA exploration and science programs.  Our guest provided us with several robotic examples, including the possibility of making heat shields from Phobos materials which could go a long way toward making a Mars mission affordable.  We talked about technology readiness levels, TRL 1-9.  Phil explained what the various levels meant & how the technology development is passed on to the next development group as the level advances.  I asked our guest to describe a typical day in his lab.  Starting at 6:45AM, Dr. Metzger described his duties and functions and those of the rest of the lab workers.  As you will hear, it’s a mixture of administrative, design, computer work, testing, retesting, & equipment manufacturing.  3D Printing was discussed in some detail and was actually a discussion topic throughout the entire program.  We talked about our being able to repair robotics as compared to building the robotics to avoid needing repair.  Listener Mike sent in an email to inquire about 3D printing, teleoperated & AI robotics for self sustaining lunar/asteroid economies. He also wanted to know how human space exploration fit into the robotic model.  Phil had much to say in response to Mike so don’t miss this discussion. Near the end of this segment, we talked about robotics & the communications time delay, even for the Moon, and what this means for HSF & robotic development. Another concept introduced to us was that of self-sustaining robots that do not need to continue being launched to their destination! Near the end of this segment, Phil introduced us to Lizard Scale Robotics & the different categories going up the scale of robotic development to the top level human scale.

In our second segment, Doug called in from S. California to inquire about starting an affordable industry, financing, and the use of lunar propellant ice.  This took us to a discussion of setting up profitable ventures for space industry development. Phil talked about a new spaceport concept starting with spaceports here on the ground, then in LEO, on the Moon, & then moving out to Phobos.  For a profitable venture, he did say the time line was still too long for capital investment so we discussed public/private partnerships. Also in this segment, we talked hardware designs, the need to start with low technology, even clumsy robots and evolve upward, but avoiding launches & most everything being made in space. We talked about launch capabilities, heavy lift, & getting a specific mass to where it needed to go.  Closing the business case came up & our guest talked about the old “impoverished view” as compared to a new, expanded, multi-potential global view. Don’t miss this discussion.  Mike sent in another note about what it might mean to be second & the value of the exponential potential.  Phil took us through this discussion which made it crystal clear why maintaining our space leadership or being part of it on an international partnership level was so important for our future.  In this context, Dr. Metzger talked about widespread participation in space development for multiple co-owners.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog.  You can reach Dr. Phil Metzger through his website or me using drspace@thespaceshow.com.

Jeff Krukin, Monday, 2-6-12 February 7, 2012

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Jeff Krukin, Monday, 2-6-12

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1706-BWB-2012-02-06.mp3

Guest:  Jeff Krukin.  Topics:  Space Vision & Space Policy.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, & discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments, questions, & any discussion must be relevant & applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright.  We welcomed Jeff Krukin back to the program to discuss how we do & should view space.  For more information about Jeff & his space work, please visit www.jeffkrukin.com.  Our discussion started with an evaluation of where we are today with space policy & the toxic nature of politics, including space politics.  Jeff cited some examples of what he meant by toxic political rhetoric.  As we began looking forward, Jeff put forth three perspectives as to the character of space. These three perspectives, if kept in mind, go beyond just thinking of space as a federal program. (1) Space is a mere 62 miles above us, & thus a continuation of our environment; (2) Space can be an extension of the economy , & thus part of our lives; (3) Space is a place of abundant resources, & thus crucial to our survival & prosperity.  You can read his Space Daily article on this subject at www.spacedaily.com/news/oped-04t.html.  I asked Jeff how to realize his three goals & we talked about the media in this country as well as advocacy, especially with politicians.  The suggestion was made to start with local & regional politicians, evolving upwards to politicians on the larger & grander national scale.  Several callers were with us during the first segment suggesting we go from think tank up the ladder to the national representatives. One of our callers suggested a new concept, venture philanthropy.  This proved to be an interesting discussion given the way the existing billionaire space entrepreneurs were characterized in terms of their investment, activity, & as potential role models for others to invest from a philanthropic perspective, not just a business case perspective.  Jeff then talked about the New Space Conference Business Plan Competition for 2012.  If you are interested in it &  possibly competing, visit http://newspacebpc.com. Before the segment ended, an email came in suggesting a Microlaunchers type policy followed by Charles calling us. Don’t miss the Pooley/Microlaunchers discussion.  

In our second segment, Jeff talked about the need for a space transportation infrastructure.  I then asked him how one goes about implementing the policies & ideas we had been discussing for the past hour or so.  The subject of SLS came up & as to be expected, it drove the passions on all sides.  Tim used an ice analogy that Jeff seemed to like. I took the part of a contrarian (I did this often during this interview) regarding the difficult choices for members of Congress in voting against jobs in their district given the economic realties of today. This came up in the first segment too in response to a listener question.  I suggested it might be unrealistic to think congress would vote against jobs in the context of today’s economy as compared to when the U.S. economy was or again becomes strong/robust.  I challenged the NewSpace thinking on what policy was & might be in the best interest of the country as it might not be the NewSpace ideas.  Jeff handled the questions & opinions I threw at him very well & in my opinion, he demonstrated not only civility, but reason, common sense, drive, & open mindedness.  Near the end we talked about some of the ideas Dennis Wingo put forth on his most program, then Jeff left us with a thoughtful set of closing comments. 

 If you have comments/questions for Jeff Krukin, please post them on The Space Show blog URL above.  If you want to contact Jeff, you can do so through me at drspace@thespaceshow.com.

Alan Boyle, Monday, 1-30-12 January 31, 2012

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Alan Boyle, Monday, 1-30-12

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1701-BWB-2012-01-30.mp3

Guest:  Alan Boyle.  Topics:  Space news, space policy, budgets and insights.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright.  We welcomed Alan Boyle to the program.  I recommend you follow and subscribe to his blog Cosmic Log at http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com.  In our first segment, Alan shared his views on space policy and the presidential candidates, developments and issues with commercial space and crew efforts, and the space vision for BEO.  Specifically, we talked about Newt’s proposed policy, American statehood for a lunar colony, the Outer Space Treaty (OST) and Alan’s view that he thought overall Newt’s comments were not that helpful to his campaign.  To a lesser degree, we talked about the Romney space policy.  Also on the discussion table were large government projects and he referenced a few that seemed better than most such as the Large Hadron Collider and ITER.  We also talked about the fact that in the previous administration, having a lunar outpost that eventually was to become commercial was our national space policy up until the new administration cancelled the program.  Alan was asked several questions about commercial crew and he referenced comments made by Boeing that the business case for now does not close without government support.  We also talked about the gap and the readiness of commercial crew to the ISS.  During this discussion, I mentioned what I had heard about Space X and its schedule for flights prior to 2017.  During the show, I contacted Space X, got a clarification of what I had heard and read it on air near the end of the program.  I appreciate the timeliness of Space X in getting back to me with accurate information so make sure you hear their statement in the last segment.  Another topic Alan brought up was international cooperation with costly missions.  I asked him about Stratolaunch as he was at the initial press conference.  He said “it was like The Band got back together.”  Don’t miss his full comments on this project.  A listener wanted to know about human rating the Atlas V, Blue Origin, and NASA budget issues.  In this context, we mentioned Intrade and Alan told us about the Iowa Electronic Market. 

In the second segment, we talked about orbital fuel depots, SLS again, and the politics of these projects.  Listeners asked questions about Space X and their projects, and then he had much to say on NASA robotic missions.  Toward the end of the program, Alan talked about space leadership & in response to my questions said it has historically come from The White House.  We got a call from Andrew of the Tea Party In Space to advocate Newt’s space policy.  We addressed additional issues for JWST, its cost, its science value, and its possible crowding out Mars robotic missions planned for the future.  Alan referenced Jim Oberg regarding the problems with Russian space hardware and Dave sent in a note about the JWST budget concerns for future astronomy missions and wondered if we were risking too much on one rocket launch.

Please post your comments/questions for Alan Boyle on The Space Show blog URL above.  He can be reached through Cosmic Log.

Rick Tumlinson, Friday, 1-20-12 January 21, 2012

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Rick Tumlinson, Friday, 1-20-12

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1694-BWB-2012-01-20.mp3

Guest: Rick Tumlinson.  Topics:  Why Space, space vision, NewSpace, SLS, opening the space frontier.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright.  We welcomed Rick Tumlinson back to the program for this nearly two hour discussion of space vision, leadership, programming, SLS, advocacy and more.  In hour first 70 minute segment, Rick opened by talking about his ongoing op-ed series in the Huffington Post titled “Why Space?”  So far he has two issues uploaded to the Huffington Post & I urge you to read them.  You can see all of Rick’s articles on the Huffington Post at www.huffingtonpost.com/rick-tumlinson. During our discussion, Rick stressed the need for space settlement and talked about this during the entire program.  Additionally, Rick focused on the big picture space vision throughout our entire discussion.  In the first segment, SLS came up but it was also talked about later in the show.  Rick explained why he thought it was the wrong project for this point in time and had much to say about private industry launch & space transportation systems as compared to government programs.  When asked if he thought SLS could be appropriate as a placeholder, he said no but listen to what he had to say about this idea.  He talked about not picking winners and advocating a common sense space plan.  I asked him for his plan and how to implement it.  He then outlined a plan in several steps during the balance of the segment.  Don’t miss it.  Listeners called & asked questions about the Chinese space program and cooperation and the same with the Russians. 

In the second segment, Rick started us off with a discussion about the Frontier approach for space development.  He also talked about going to the Moon and why, but also about asteroids & Mars.  He said we need to develop the skills and the insitu experience for living & working in space.  Several times he mentioned that on the Moon and Mars we would be living underground due to the radiation.  Rick then talked about space habitats including O’Neil like space stations/habitats.  Several listeners asked about the role of HSF in developing our understanding of the universe, specifically for 2012 and beyond.  John from Atlanta called in to talk about the lack of civility coming from the NewSpace community toward old space.  This produced a spirited give & take with Rick which in a way focused on “guarantees” for the commercial company success as compared to government rocket programs.  John suggested it was a bit risky putting all the “eggs” in unproven commercial company baskets when we know the government launch vehicle will work as long as the program is not cancelled.  Don’t miss what John and Rick had to say.. Toward the end, Rick talked about the Texas Space Alliance & his new organization, EarthLight Institute. He provided us with substantial detail about the EarthLight Institute plans, their website which is under construction,  plus the book on asteroids that he is working on and will be out around the end of the year.  He was asked about his continuing role with the Space Frontier Foundation & the activities of SFF.

Please post comments/questions on The Space Show blog URL above. Rick’s email address is rick@earthlightinstitute.org