Obama Space Plan: Return to Moon: "No Go"

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Johnny Rico, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. SG-17

    SG-17 Commodore Commodore

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    Space travel is more important than health care.
     
  2. Lindley

    Lindley Moderator with a Soul Moderator

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    It gives us a good testing ground for Mars technologies, while still being in emergency-return range of Earth.

    I mean, we need to figure out how to set up automated mining systems somewhere, and helium-3 gives us something to dig for at least.
     
  3. drychlick

    drychlick Captain Captain

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    if he not going to get the money for health care! he not going to get the money for space. but fear not we get there 1 day maybe not in our life time but 1 day! let work on earth 1st! like geting people job ! we got 4 billion year till the sun go nova! love don:)
     
  4. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    How many were unemployed/homeless before last fall? How many are under 26, but haven't joined the service?. The harvest starts all over this country about now, how many won't get their hands dirty? The big farms run buses into the cities every year.

    McDonald's is always hiring, and the armys always recruiting.

    Don't want a "internet anecdote" So I asked my dad, in the thirty-nine years he's been out of high school he's been unemployed twenty-three days.
    Since leaving the service has worked many jobs and even though he hasn't driven trucks in years, he maintances a CDL, just in case.

    Good thing Obama's raising the debt ceiling again, better to help "your folks"

    What is the difference between the gov. helping them a litttle and the gov. just handing them my money? I guess I'm just a smug little thing.
     
  5. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

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    Even if you canceled NASA's budget entirely the money saved wouldn't cover 5% of health care.
     
  6. IndyJones

    IndyJones Vice Admiral Admiral

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    This is not the right forum for this crap, but I shouldn't really expect any better from this OP.
     
  7. Mr. B

    Mr. B Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I can't say I disagree with the recommendation to dump Ares. The whole Constellation program seems like a step back from the space shuttle. Personally (irrelevant opinion), I'd rather see them putting heavy resources into a next generation reusable craft
     
  8. darkwing_duck1

    darkwing_duck1 Vice Admiral

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    Yes, you are. Your father is very fortunate. Millions and millions of other Americans are not.

    I applaud this move if it comes to pass.

    Just say "NO" to wasteful space programs!
     
  9. Deks

    Deks Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    An interesting perspective.
    How about the homeless individuals who want to get off the streets and find jobs but can't due to the circumstances and regulations that put them in a catch 22 situation?
    Such as having a permanent address for example (shelters btw cannot be counted as such) which also excludes potential friends who are already productive members of society since we are talking about people without connections to begin with.

    The point is ... since the government has been doing essentially nothing to help out these people get back into society even before the recession hit, I don't see how reducing the NASA budget even further would help the recession or prevent loss of jobs in the mainstream when the military for example seems to have a limitless source of funds that are being squandered at every turn.

    Forgive me, but the government had loads of opportunities to divert the money from other sources in order to 'fix things right here on Earth' in the past and nobody ever did anything.
     
  10. Squiggy

    Squiggy FrozenToad Admiral

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    Outside of looking somewhat like Apollo, they're not similar.
     
  11. TheMasterOfOrion

    TheMasterOfOrion Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    http://www.nasaproblems.com/
     
  12. Cicero

    Cicero Admiral Admiral

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    The most expensive part of spacecraft supply and construction is lift. Even with space elevators (which are beyond our current level of technology), the cost per pound to orbit is prohibitive for large spacecraft. Building craft on the moon from mostly lunar materials would offer huge cost savings until and unless we can find a way to reach Earth orbit more cheaply.
     
  13. USS KG5

    USS KG5 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    That "beyond our current level of technology" is so key to this whole debate it is worth a quote here, and it is a point many people miss entirely.

    We simply do not have the technology, and will not within the lifetime of anyone now, to make space travel cheap, efficient and everyday, it will NOT happen.

    We ALL here would love in our lifetimes to go into space, and holiday on the Moon or Mars, but even in fifty years it is likely that space travel will still be an amazingly expensive, difficult and dangerous pursuit.

    Added to that is the fact that the main impetus behind the space program (sticking it to the USSR) is now well and truly gone, unless some concrete reason comes along politicians have no reason to back the space program beyond its current subsistence level while the world's economies are torn apart.

    A huge energy crisis, global warming completely aside, is also coming, with the pressure on oil supplies, strife in the Middle East and the pressure for global action on climate change, energy is what the next fifty years is going to be about.

    Sorry, space travel is on the back-burner and will be now for a long time to come.
     
  14. Alpha_Geek

    Alpha_Geek Commodore Commodore

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    KG5, you're right. We "didn't have the technology" When Kennedy proclaimed that we were going to the frakkin' moon in less than a decade. We damn sure developed it though!

    Unfortunately, the first US President to proclaim a goal of putting a man on Mars by 2030 wasn't backed by the rest of the government. That bold statement by George Herbert Walker Bush just fell by the wayside.

    It would be interesting to see where we'd be now if there had been follow through on it at that time. So many technlogies we take for granted now came from that initial push to Luna 40 years ago.

    Oh well, maybe the Bigelow people can rub some noses on an operational Transhab based facility in the not too distant future. :)
     
  15. Cicero

    Cicero Admiral Admiral

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    The old space program, even before President Kennedy chose to go to the moon, was significantly better funded than today's NASA. The space agency budget in 1962 was $5.4 billion, which is about $40 billion in today's dollars (the OMB inflation calculations are deeply flawed); 1.4% of the total budget was allocated to NASA. In 2009, NASA's budget was $17.2 billion, which accounts for only 0.55% of the national budget.

    As President Kennedy put it, the difference in cost between the Mercury space program and the Apollo era was between 40 cents per person per week and 50 cents per person per week. Today, that would be about $2.40 per person per week (30 cents) and $3.20 per person per week (40 cents). The cost of the Mercury-era program today would be about $125 per person per year.

    The ultimate price of Apollo was much higher than President Kennedy suggested. By 1965, NASA's budget had risen to 5.3% of the national budget, $33.514 billion. In today's dollars, the cost of the Apollo program at its cost height would be about $0.25 trillion per year.

    When considering the future of the space program - when considering the future of any program - it's important to consider its costs, in terms of capital and commitment. Apollo was a tremendous undertaking in its day, and any serious space exploration in the next hundred years is likely to be similarly expensive, costly, and requiring. We cannot go to space without at least two of effort, money, and time.
     
  16. TeknoNurd

    TeknoNurd Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    IM(H)O: Forget the moon, mars, and every other nearby space dirt. Lets focus on setting up a self-sufficient orbital capacity. During it's development, rescue or "life boats" are much more realistic than anything space-dirt based.

    Once we have SELF-SUFFCIENT space-faring capability, we can take it "safely" wherever we want, apply it to "safe/self-sufficient" space-dirt bases on the moon, mars, Io, wherever, even fling it toward deep space, and time/resources won't be a critical issue.

    Are we really that far from a space elevator? I thought self-organizing nano carbon tubes (reorganize the words the right way if they are wrong) were becoming plausible, and that we've created ribbons several feet long already? How much of this effort is even direclty or indirectly government funded? These are touted as being able to support their own weight.

    But, I agree the space elevator will change everything space-wise, and would probably be the best first target of a lot of money. 2nd should be self-sustaining orbit. 3rd, take 2 to the planets, moons, and stars.
     
  17. Arrqh

    Arrqh Vice Admiral Admiral

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    As has been stated several times now, NASA's budget is a very small portion of the yearly federal budget. If you want to look for wasteful spending overall, then NASA is the wrong place to look.
     
  18. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

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    A reusable spacecraft is an order of magnitude more difficult than Constellation and would most likely be an order of magnitude more expensive.
     
  19. Alpha_Geek

    Alpha_Geek Commodore Commodore

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    There are other federal programs that waste more than the entire NASA budget. Look elsewhere for savings.
     
  20. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    A lot of it does come down to 'cost per pound to low earth orbit'.

    If we could reduce that number then it might be possible to cut the government out of the loop, at least in terms of financing. Why do this at all? Part is just to expand, to grow as a people and a nation. Also as a way to drive the economy. At one time it was agriculture, then it was cars, then it was airplanes. Now it's information technology.

    A fully reusable system is only an advantage if it cheaper than a expendable one. At several hundred million dollars a launch the shuttle is more expense than using a "big dumb booster", it make no difference if the shuttle itself is reusable.

    The cost over-runs on the Ares system are mostly due to the falling value of the american dollar, not any inheirent defects in Ares.

    Space has potential. Not just to spend a hundred million dollars to sent a few thousand dollars worth of parts to the outer planets for pictures. We can get humanity off this world forever, Build the huge solar collectors, create colonies everywhere, invent thing we can't even conceive of now

    Space, it an area where we can shine.

    .