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Old November 13th, 2017, 03:28 AM   #1
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atmospheric test: Sierra Nevada Corp.ís Dream Chaser spaceship, successful landing

Our legacy spacecraft, the phallic, disposable style rockets got us to the moon.
The hope, the promise of NASA's reusable shuttles was that the $cost of boosting a pound of payload to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) could be reduced.
In part due to the high maintenance costs of the shuttle's fragile ceramic heat shields, some cost ratings indicated NASA's shuttles were even more $expensive to operate than "disposable" rockets.

Elon Musk has succeeded in developing reusable rockets. After a lower stage is used and ejected, the capsule proceeds to destination, while the lower stage lands safely on an ocean barge. From there it is retrieved, restored, and reused.
Quote:
"Itís sad that some people get an ego buzz by insulting stories like this. It is not a supply truck. It is a highly advanced piece of flight hardware with countless hard hours of development. Thank God we have people in this country that push advancement. If it were left to some.. weíd still have horse stables at our homes."

https://spaceflightnow.com/2017/11/1...e-test-flight/
About a quarter the length of one of NASA's now retired space shuttles, but otherwise similar in appearance, one model has succeeded in landing on runway, after being dropped from a helicopter.

BUT !!

With innovations being made from the private sector such as SpaceX's air breathing launch stage, to Elon Musk's -park it on a barge- technology, would lapsing back to the formerly obsolete reusable shuttle style spacecraft benefit our space efforts?
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Old November 13th, 2017, 11:18 AM   #2
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It's all pretty confusing to me. A couple of private side ideas, this idea, what's the idea??

And the craft, it's automated but it has a windshield???

And one other point, what is the impact of rocket exhaust on the tenuous upper atmosphere? Have any studies been done, any theories?
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Old November 13th, 2017, 11:32 AM   #3
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Quote:
"It's all pretty confusing to me." it #2
Well, it's not rocket science!

- oh -
Wait.

That's exactly what it is!

OK
Never mind.
Quote:
"A couple of private side ideas, this idea, what's the idea??" it #2
?
The NASA shuttle fleet was retired on schedule, during the Obama administration.
Those former rocket ships are now museum pieces.

So the U.S. ISS astronauts have been transported up & down via Russian spacecraft.

SpaceX has sent a few freight missions up there, but those are unmanned.

So the U.S. is seeking ways to regain our space-flight independence / self-sufficiency (even if the Russian way is cheaper, which it may be).
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"And one other point, what is the impact of rocket exhaust on the tenuous upper atmosphere? Have any studies been done, any theories?" it #2
I gather some specific research has been done on potential detrimental affects of high altitude aircraft / spacecraft on for obvious example our protective ozone layer.
Some laymen were concerned we were punching holes in it.

Nope.

Not any more than swimming in the ocean leaves holes in it.
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Old November 13th, 2017, 11:59 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by titan View Post
Well, it's not rocket science!

- oh -
Wait.

That's exactly what it is!

OK
Never mind.


Quote:
?
The NASA shuttle fleet was retired on schedule, during the Obama administration.
Those former rocket ships are now museum pieces.

So the U.S. ISS astronauts have been transported up & down via Russian spacecraft.

SpaceX has sent a few freight missions up there, but those are unmanned.

So the U.S. is seeking ways to regain our space-flight independence / self-sufficiency (even if the Russian way is cheaper, which it may be).
It was rather stupid to retire the fleet with no alternative means. And....

Russian rocket builder may have replaced special alloys with cheap metals

Typical Russki stuff, in a country where the prevailed credo is: Screw your neighbor and get yours before your neighbor screws you and gets his, yes, even when it comes to the high-profile lives of astronauts.

And a side note: It's a fact that if we leave Muslims alone, they'll turn on each other and defeat themselves. The same hold true for Russians with their brand new "capitalism."

Quote:
I gather some specific research has been done on potential detrimental affects of high altitude aircraft / spacecraft on for obvious example our protective ozone layer.
Some laymen were concerned we were punching holes in it.

Nope.

Not any more than swimming in the ocean leaves holes in it.
I don't know if you're joking here, but we don't change the chemical makeup of the ocean by swimming in it.
Thanks from RNG
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Old November 13th, 2017, 12:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
"It was rather stupid to retire the fleet with no alternative means. And...." it #4
It's a confluence of realities.
Obviously if we had an unlimited U.S. federal budget, including an unlimited NASA budget, we could all be flying about the cosmos in gold-plated rocket ships.

We don't.

In addition:
the shuttle retirement schedule was not based on stupidity.
It's based upon reliable life expectancy of the machines. They were used to the extent of their useful lives.

They were retired for reasons of safety, reliability, and escalating costs.
There wasn't $money in the NASA budget to field prompt replacements.

On chemical swimming:
there's no chemistry in rocket fuel that's uniquely disproportionately detrimental to Earth's atmosphere.
If you want to benefit the environment, park your '67 Chevy Camaro.
You may have a campfire, or run the gas grill.
The difference is, you don't do either of those at 150,000'.
But we've been shooting rockets since the previous millennium.
Guess what.

Rumor has it, some of us are still alive.

Nope. Not joking. They're simple exothermic oxidation reactions.
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Old November 13th, 2017, 12:48 PM   #6
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I am a child of the space age, and aside from watching cartoons when I was young, the next big deal were the Gemini and later Apollo moon launches that culminated with Apollo 11's landing and three afterthought missions before the US Government pulled the plug on these expensive vanity projects before they had the chance to get to the final one - Apollo 20.

The other big deal...when I was in high school was that flying brick otherwise known as the Space Shuttle project. The Space Shuttle sucked the available funding out of other space programs and was never able to live up to its promise as a safe, efficient, reusable space transport and delivery system. So, we got no permanent space stations in Earth and lunar orbit; no permanent Moon bases and no Mars landers....which were supposed to first land on Mars around 2005 according to the books and promotional literature supplied by NASA back in the 70's.

Part of the problem was that NASA is just an adjunct of the notoriously corrupt military departments, and was motivated by the need to "beat the Russians to the Moon" in case they were actually trying to make a Moon landing....which they probably weren't after several setbacks in the 60's and examining the full costs of lunar ventures.

But, none of these big space dreams inform the public about the real costs of going into space....beginning with the enormous quantities of energy needed to break free from this planet, just to get to the Moon..and the even greater amounts of energy needed to break free long enough to get to Mars, let alone the outer planets! Then, there's the problems of solar and deep space radiation affecting a ship on very long journeys, and the BIG problem of providing a sustainable self-contained environment for the crew and proposed permanent settlements.

Back in the 70's, when planetary and space colonies were first being thought out, one of the last things believed to be an issue was building the self-sustaining environment, but after decades of failure after failure to build permanent self-contained biospheres here on Earth(that fail for unexpected and many times-still unknown reasons) any honest analysis of space travel, exploration and colonization has to conclude that these are all pipedreams and in all honesty, our species will NEVER break the bounds of our planetary home! So why aren't we making serious attempts to do everything necessary to bring human ecological impacts back in line with what nature can sustain permanently?

Now, getting to Elon Musk: this little charlatan's primary skills are relieving governments and some prominent billionaires of their wallets! Everything he builds, from electric cars to home battery packs to his space rockets are startups using other people's and government money!

Here, Forbes focuses in on the distortions that occur in stock valuations of companies from Amazon to Musk's electric car venture when investors attempt to price in expected future profits:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/johntam.../#2464bb7b6005
Subsidies Are Hiding Elon Musk's Certain Entrepreneurial Genius


While down here, the LA Times takes a closer look at the almost 5 billion dollars Musk's three great ideas have collected so far from public subsidies:

Elon Musk's growing empire is fueled by $4.9 billion in government subsidies
http://www.latimes.com/business/la-f...531-story.html

While the unfriendly Competitive Enterprize Institute https://cei.org/blog/elon-musk-angry...payer-handouts goes after "rent-seeking" that Musk and other businessmen do in search of government handouts. I'd like to see the list include each and every weapons contractor that buys politicians from both parties in their efforts to secure contracts from their only employer- The US Government....but that's another issue!

The big problem with Elon Musk's rockets and others before him that have extracted money from governments and rich space cadets with money they don't need, is that arguments can be made for the viability of electric cars and solar panels, but rocket may as well load up with cash and fire it all off into space if it's not being used for scientific research!

Last edited by right to left; November 13th, 2017 at 12:52 PM.
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