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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 11:26am
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someone_else wrote:
Quote:
This is a tricky question because the mass on offer is too large for modest scientific goals, like probing the solar system, but too small for something really dramatic.
Lol?
An unmanned probe to fucking alpha centauri in 100 years? You have any fucking idea of how absurd is that?

The main reason is that you have to develop an engine that does not suck balls first. :mrgreen:

I said it presents interesting challenges. Which is engineering speak for quite fucking absurd, but not known to be impossible either. Even a nuclear powered spaceship may indeed not be buildable to that spec on 50,000t, but it isn't totally beyond the realm of possibility either.

Quote:
Quote:
Permanent moon base - Ideally as self-sufficient as possible. The main interest would be how to survive for extended periods in such a wilderness, which strictly could be done in a NASA car park, but it would also have good element of exciting historic achivement.
That's plain idiotic. With the same money you could fill the whole fucking moon with platoons of prospecting bots, and if lucky enough, start a relatively profitable teleoperated mining operation by having Uncle Sam paying for start-up costs.
Still a total murderous ripoff, but for a much better reason.

Not really. At least my idea is cool; yours will just lose money for no gloire.

Quote:
I'd say keep funnelling money to SpaceX and hope they deliver, and then focus on fixing and maintaining orbital satellites for a while (they cost billions and there are loads of them that could use some help for the right price), again having Uncle Sam swallow the start-up and development costs (minusucule if compared to the STS, but who cares).

Then proceed with the moon as above with the money from orbital mainteneance services.

Ignoring the question, which was not "What is the most efficient way to run the space program?" but "What would you do with 50,000t to orbit?".

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 11:43am
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HMS Conqueror wrote:
Skgoa wrote:
Actually, from a national economy point of view, space programs are a net benefit due to the "tech" that comes out of them. I.e. investing into space science and R&D makes a country's economy stronger in exactly the way dropping bombs on brown people doesn't.

That's not true at all.

Those bombs don't just drop themselves, but come at the end of a sophisticated aerospace logistics train that has received far more investment and physics and engineering expertise in the past decades than the space program. It is responsible for dramatic advances in electronics, sensors, materials and engines, not to mention those achievements with less carry-over but which are nonetheless impressive, like radar stealth.

Please learn to read.



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This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 11:45am
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You said that dropping bombs on Brown people doesn't produce ancillary tech benefit, when in fact it does.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 11:56am
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It doesn't. I said that R&D produces tech benefit and you seem to agree, since you went on to make the same point. The process of going to war does not include R&D. So every bomb after the first one does not do anything but waste money and lives.
Maybe this makes it clearer: many countries manage to have state-of-the-art technology despite not being at war. Even many of the US' high tech weapons are entirely unsuited to the wars america has fought in recent years. (Military R&D did contiue regardless.) Thus, for everyone but the companies that are paid to re-stock US armories, there was no benefit.



http://www.politicalcompass.org/test
Economic Left/Right: -7.12
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.74

This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 12:29pm
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That's like saying that the space program produces no R&D because that is all done before anything enters space. (which, in both cases, is not even strictly true)

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 12:50pm
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HMS Conqueror wrote:
That's like saying that the space program produces no R&D because that is all done before anything enters space. (which, in both cases, is not even strictly true)


No - the R&D was required to get into space in the first place, one thing led to another. However, the US would have a military, and conduct R&D, even if it never went into Afghanistan or Irag or got involved in Libya etc. The military R&D did not lead to bombing brown people and is in fact totally independent of it. Hence, bombing brown people produces no benefit to R&D.



"I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams" - Hamlet

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 01:29pm
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The purpose of military development is to fight wars. The only thing not known is who specifically will be fought.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 01:40pm
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HMS Conqueror wrote:
The purpose of military development is to fight wars. The only thing not known is who specifically will be fought.


God...you really don't understand that fighting a war does not, in fact, help the economy?

Military R&D brings economic and technological benefits until the first shot is fired, at which point you're doing nothing but spending money and resources on the damn munitions.



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JULY 20TH 1969 - The day the entire world was looking up

It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn't feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.
- NEIL ARMSTRONG, MISSION COMMANDER, APOLLO 11

Signature dedicated to the greatest achievement of mankind.

MILDLY DERANGED PHYSICIST does not mind BREAKING the SOUND BARRIER, because it is INSURED. - Simon_Jester considering the problems of hypersonic flight for Team L.A.M.E.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 02:48pm
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PeZook wrote:
HMS Conqueror wrote:
The purpose of military development is to fight wars. The only thing not known is who specifically will be fought.


God...you really don't understand that fighting a war does not, in fact, help the economy?

That's not what Keynes told me!

Quote:
Military R&D brings economic and technological benefits until the first shot is fired, at which point you're doing nothing but spending money and resources on the damn munitions.

Like how space research brings economic and technological benefits until you actually launch a spaceship. You don't need to do that to just develop and build one.

Nb: not even strictly true in either case; the use is often the only way of really testing it.

Also, I didn't say that either was net beneficial economically, just that they had similar effect. They're basically the same industry!

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-27 09:06pm
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I for one don't buy the 'space R&D changed our lives' or the 'Military R&D changed our lives' angles. Because, let's face it, most of the reasearch and money spent on space goes to making very high end areospace equipment that only about 50 people will ever use, and the military R&D goes to making a tankette with a 20mm, enough ammo to shoot up all of metropolitan DC and enough missiles to wipe out an armored platoon.

I mean, nobody invented Velcro, Tang, Microprocessors, or inertial guidance systems for going to the moon. Those things already existed, they just made them better or implemented them in new ways. So if there is a benefit from space-research, it's probably not going to come out of the vehicles used to get there.

Anyways, back on topic, how much factory equipment could we heft up there to start assembling an Island 3?



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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-28 02:41am
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HMS Conqueror wrote:
That's not what Keynes told me!


Yeah, that's true.

Quote:
Like how space research brings economic and technological benefits until you actually launch a spaceship. You don't need to do that to just develop and build one.


Except for the small part of the equation where spacecraft build infrastructure and provide scientific return, instead of BLOWING UP infrastructure and killing people. When you space R&D results in launches, you get satellites, remote probes or manned missions, all of which provide economic or scientific benefits.

Dropping bombs on Afghan villages builds nothing. Quite the opposite, actually. And if you need to get into a real, total war...well, let's just say you're not going to be able to do a whole lot of science or economic activity afterwards.

Quote:
Nb: not even strictly true in either case; the use is often the only way of really testing it.

Also, I didn't say that either was net beneficial economically, just that they had similar effect. They're basically the same industry!


And you keep missing the point that while space and military R&D are similar (and often use each other's technologies and industries), space CONTINUES to provide benefits when it moves out of the R&D phase, while war does not,because the very PURPOSE of military equipment is destruction and killing, which is the antithesis of economic activity.

At least nowadays, when the spoils of war are next the useless compared to costs of weaponry.

Vehrec wrote:
I mean, nobody invented Velcro, Tang, Microprocessors, or inertial guidance systems for going to the moon. Those things already existed, they just made them better or implemented them in new ways. So if there is a benefit from space-research, it's probably not going to come out of the vehicles used to get there.


Nobody invented velcro, no. But inertial guidance systems are a DIRECT RESULT of military research into navigational systems, applied and refined for aerospace. Government investment allowed contractors to gain experience and eventually roll out inertial systems into the commercial market.

Same goes for many production techniques used in, say, production of Beta Cloth, which was pretty much a space-only fabric. Radiation and EMP resistant electronics are also a direct result of military and space R&D. The same techniques used to make beta cloth led directly to an entire line of new materials used in civilian clothing every damned day. Since 1958, NASA has transferred 1600 patents, solutions and government-held technologies to the private sector.

And outside R&D...how's the weather going to be today? Is the hurricane season gonna be bad?



Image
JULY 20TH 1969 - The day the entire world was looking up

It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn't feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.
- NEIL ARMSTRONG, MISSION COMMANDER, APOLLO 11

Signature dedicated to the greatest achievement of mankind.

MILDLY DERANGED PHYSICIST does not mind BREAKING the SOUND BARRIER, because it is INSURED. - Simon_Jester considering the problems of hypersonic flight for Team L.A.M.E.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-28 05:50am
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HMS Conqueror wrote:
Even a nuclear powered spaceship may indeed not be buildable to that spec on 50,000t, but it isn't totally beyond the realm of possibility either.
We aren't talking "common" nuclear power here (fission), you need fusion engines for the very least (albeit i'm still much more positive about relativistic sailbots and a magnetic pusher plate) and a way to ensure your highly advanced and complex shit does not fuck up horribly for 100 years of continued operation.

Ok, you may manage to make it mass less than 50 ktons but hell, I don't understand the point of your speculation if you can pull out that awesomeness from the hat.

Quote:
Quote:
With the same money you could fill the whole fucking moon with platoons of prospecting bots, and if lucky enough, start a relatively profitable teleoperated mining operation by having Uncle Sam paying for start-up costs.
Not really. At least my idea is cool; yours will just lose money for no gloire.
Bullshit. Your idea will crash and burn the second the will for it ceases, and become "something cool that we cannot sadly do anymore" for the future generations. Like any space program did in the past. If you said "I wanna make a Moon Hotel for the Wealthy", it would have looked much better.

If it does make some kind of money it will keep going on regardless of your will, and eventually lead to cost reductions for everything else. Which means, I want to make sure someone will eventually build a truly permanent moon base in the future (mainly a turist hotel, probably), not will stuff into existence that will disappear/wither-and-die whenever i leave the chair.

HMS Conqueror wrote:
Ignoring the question, which was not "What is the most efficient way to run the space program?" but "What would you do with 50,000t to orbit?".
That's my answer. I want to use that mass budget to jump-start a true self-sustaining space colonization effort that will then keep rolling well after I left the chair, not to make Neverland-in-Space or blow moon-sized amounts of money to Alpha Centauri.

PeZook wrote:
Government investment allowed contractors to gain experience and eventually roll out inertial systems into the commercial market.
The only thing that I'd point out is that any kind of government-backed R&D tends to have this effect, apart for some military stuff that gets classified.
I mean, as long as it's Ol'Sam paying for stuff, does not matter what is being done exactly, but advances will be made.

Vehrec wrote:
Anyways, back on topic, how much factory equipment could we heft up there to start assembling an Island 3?
Probably enough to make the space tugs/landers/infrastructure plus moon fueling facilities, moon mines and regolith smelters to build the hull of the beast in a couple decades, but not anywhere near enough to actually fill it with the cool things you see in pictures.



I'm nobody. Nobody at all. But the secrets of the universe don't mind. They reveal themselves to nobodies who care.
--
Stereotypical spacecraft are pressurized.
Less realistic spacecraft are pressurized to hold breathing atmosphere.
Realistic spacecraft are pressurized because they are flying propellant tanks. -Isaac Kuo

--
Good art has function as well as form. I hesitate to spend more than $50 on decorations of any kind unless they can be used to pummel an intruder into submission. -Sriad

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-28 05:54am
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Actually, a much directer answer to the "what tech is coming out of space" question would be: what do you think they are doing up there? ;) The ISS is full of experiments that are up there precisely because they could not been done down here. And the same is true for many satelites and the payloads of several shuttle flights. In the end it comes down to trusting in the national grant-giving bodies to decide whether it's worth the (up to) millions of dollars to send an experiment up there.
Many (space fanatic) people see the ISS as infrastructure or as a prototype for BEO missions, but it's not. It's a lab first and foremost. It gives new insights into physical, biological and chemical processes.



http://www.politicalcompass.org/test
Economic Left/Right: -7.12
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.74

This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-28 06:34am
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someone_else wrote:
The only thing that I'd point out is that any kind of government-backed R&D tends to have this effect, apart for some military stuff that gets classified.
I mean, as long as it's Ol'Sam paying for stuff, does not matter what is being done exactly, but advances will be made.


Yes, that's absolutely true. Military R&D just tends to get a lot of grant money for really cutting-edge, engineering stuff that happens to have a lot of civilian applications, too. Hell, the GPS constellation by itself is revolutionary and was paid for and constructed entirely via military R&D.



Image
JULY 20TH 1969 - The day the entire world was looking up

It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn't feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.
- NEIL ARMSTRONG, MISSION COMMANDER, APOLLO 11

Signature dedicated to the greatest achievement of mankind.

MILDLY DERANGED PHYSICIST does not mind BREAKING the SOUND BARRIER, because it is INSURED. - Simon_Jester considering the problems of hypersonic flight for Team L.A.M.E.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-03-29 11:45am
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PeZook wrote:
Quote:
Like how space research brings economic and technological benefits until you actually launch a spaceship. You don't need to do that to just develop and build one.


Except for the small part of the equation where spacecraft build infrastructure and provide scientific return, instead of BLOWING UP infrastructure and killing people. When you space R&D results in launches, you get satellites, remote probes or manned missions, all of which provide economic or scientific benefits.

Dropping bombs on Afghan villages builds nothing. Quite the opposite, actually. And if you need to get into a real, total war...well, let's just say you're not going to be able to do a whole lot of science or economic activity afterwards.

Blowing up, blowing into space, whatever.

The probes and manned missions don't produce economic benefits. Scientific, maybe, but that's equivocation.

Your interpretation of the usefulness of war is also loaded with value judgments; destroying afghan mud huts may be net-beneficial economically if it kills people who would otherwise have destroyed much more valuable infrastructure in the US. Who is to say this is not more useful than 100 different TV channels? (btw, comms are almost entirely ground-based fibre now, and all the sat phone companies went bankrupt, while GPS was built for military purposes!)

someone_else wrote:
We aren't talking "common" nuclear power here (fission), you need fusion engines for the very least (albeit i'm still much more positive about relativistic sailbots and a magnetic pusher plate) and a way to ensure your highly advanced and complex shit does not fuck up horribly for 100 years of continued operation.

Ok, you may manage to make it mass less than 50 ktons but hell, I don't understand the point of your speculation if you can pull out that awesomeness from the hat.

I'm not sure that's true. I'm fairly sure of reading about an orion concept that would do it. ofc orion is itself a speculative venture, but not an impossible one.

Quote:
Bullshit. Your idea will crash and burn the second the will for it ceases, and become "something cool that we cannot sadly do anymore" for the future generations. Like any space program did in the past. If you said "I wanna make a Moon Hotel for the Wealthy", it would have looked much better.

If it does make some kind of money it will keep going on regardless of your will, and eventually lead to cost reductions for everything else. Which means, I want to make sure someone will eventually build a truly permanent moon base in the future (mainly a turist hotel, probably), not will stuff into existence that will disappear/wither-and-die whenever i leave the chair.

Thankfully under the scenario I don't have to care about will, because I got a free lift budget. That's the point of this thread. IRL there is no will to launch 50kT of anything.

The problem with space mining is it won't make any money and also isn't cool.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-04-02 03:31am
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Quote:
I'm fairly sure of reading about an orion concept that would do it. ofc orion is itself a speculative venture, but not an impossible one.
The orion concept that would do it was using pure fusion bombs (made of handwavium), not the fission-initiated fusion bombs that are the current best of the rack.

That's basically an inertially-confined fusion engine with much more expensive pellets.


Quote:
The problem with space mining is it won't make any money and also isn't cool.
depends from the costs. If I can pull the infrastructure from my ass, it will make lots of money. There are lots of interesting things to go and take. And working in hard vacuum and freefall is pretty cool condition to create new 100% pure composites or nanotubes, or whatever. What stops everything is the cost of doing so.

As for not being cool, I don't give a shit. The goal was trying to set the wheel in motion, not do a stunt for kicks.



I'm nobody. Nobody at all. But the secrets of the universe don't mind. They reveal themselves to nobodies who care.
--
Stereotypical spacecraft are pressurized.
Less realistic spacecraft are pressurized to hold breathing atmosphere.
Realistic spacecraft are pressurized because they are flying propellant tanks. -Isaac Kuo

--
Good art has function as well as form. I hesitate to spend more than $50 on decorations of any kind unless they can be used to pummel an intruder into submission. -Sriad

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-04-02 04:54am
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HMS Conqueror wrote:
Blowing up, blowing into space, whatever.


Uh...yeah, so when you shoot something into space that then works for the benefit of everyone on Earth (bah who the hell needs weather satellites!) it's the exact same thing as dropping a bomb and leaving a crater? :D

I seriously don't know how to say it any simpler: both space and military R&D give similar benefits. The only difference is that actually using their results for their intended purpose results in destruction and death and one case, and SCIENCE! and useful infrastructure in the other.

HMS Conqueror wrote:
The probes and manned missions don't produce economic benefits. Scientific, maybe, but that's equivocation.


Oh yeah, I totally equivocated here! That's why I wrote:

PeZook wrote:
When you space R&D results in launches, you get satellites, remote probes or manned missions, all of which provide economic or scientific benefits.


Totally!

HMS Conqueror wrote:
Your interpretation of the usefulness of war is also loaded with value judgments; destroying afghan mud huts may be net-beneficial economically if it kills people who would otherwise have destroyed much more valuable infrastructure in the US. Who is to say this is not more useful than 100 different TV channels? (btw, comms are almost entirely ground-based fibre now, and all the sat phone companies went bankrupt, while GPS was built for military purposes!)


Oh, yeah, I forgot that you can go to war to defend yourself. I wonder how many world trade centres you could've built for 1.5 trillion :D

So how about quoting some of those "value judgements" I made about war? Maybe the one where I pointed out war destroys infrastructure? Or that it kills people? Or maybe that a total war turns nations into rubble?

I guess these statements are open to interpretation? :D



Image
JULY 20TH 1969 - The day the entire world was looking up

It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn't feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.
- NEIL ARMSTRONG, MISSION COMMANDER, APOLLO 11

Signature dedicated to the greatest achievement of mankind.

MILDLY DERANGED PHYSICIST does not mind BREAKING the SOUND BARRIER, because it is INSURED. - Simon_Jester considering the problems of hypersonic flight for Team L.A.M.E.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-04-02 08:21am
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The benefits of military spending in the 20th century, at least in the free countries, is enormous. One of those closest to my own heart is radar. While the Nazi bombers very nearly killed my grandparents with it, without it I think they would have had a much better chance. Conversely, turning Berlin into rubble has indeed been of net benefit to mankind.

With space, there's really no claim to a net economic benefit in the actual execution stage. Some cool things, yes, and much scientific data that is interesting but not for the most part practically useful.

The claim, anyway, was that space program R&D paid back into society with unrelated spin-offs and improvements that help in other areas, while military spending did not, when in fact they basically operate in the same way, often using very similar physics.

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 Post subject: Re: RAR: Cape Capacity! PostPosted: 2012-04-05 08:19pm
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someone_else wrote:
Uraniun235 wrote:
Using the space shuttle more would have necessitated throwing a lot more money at it.
Not necessarily. Most of the cost of the Shuttle program was in the wages of the people working at it (which where a lot, a lot more than for a conventional rocket). Which was more or less a fixed cost. The more launches you make the more you can split the fixed costs, the less is the cost-per-launch.

For example, the reusable solid boosters started making economic sense only with more than X flghts per year, and this X was something like 15 or 20 or some number the Shuttle never came close.

In the part of my post you cut out of the quote, I already explained that the Shuttle staff as-is (er... as-was, I guess) was struggling to support the launch rate they already had, never mind a launch rate double its absolute peak. Let me quote my source for you.

Mike Mullane in Riding Rockets, chapter 25, "The Golden Age":

Quote:
If ever there was a Golden Age for the space shuttle program, that period was 1984 to Challenger. In those two years there were a total of fifteen successful shuttle missions, ten of those coming in the final twelve months. The shuttle would never again achieve that flight rate. ... The missions were coming so fast that shuttles were simultaneously being readied for launch on pads 39-A and -B.

...

On the surface things looked glorious for NASA. But there was a problem: Getting to the twenty-plus missions per year that would give the shuttle a cost-competitive advantage over other launch systems was proving to be a much more formidable task than expected. The shuttle was a voracious consumer of man-hours. After every landing there were thousands of components that needed to be inspected, tested, drained, pressurized, or otherwise serviced. There were 28,000 heat tiles and thermal blankets on the vehicle. Each one had to be inspected. Mission-specific software had to be developed and validated. Payloads had to be installed and checked out. Severely hampering every turnaround was the lack of spare parts. Just-landed orbiters were being cannibalized of their main engines and other components to get the next shuttle ready. The necessary requirement to meticulously document all work was another drag on vehicle turnarounds: Just tightening a screw generated multiple pieces of paperwork. The joke within the astronaut corps was a space shuttle could not be launched until the stacked paper detailing the turnaround work equaled the height of the shuttle stack... two hundred feet.

At just ten missions per year the shuttle was driving the system to its knees. The message was the same everywhere: "I need more people. I need more equipment. I need more spare parts." But NASA didn't have the money to buy these things. While commercial customers offset a portion of the expense, the cash flow was nowhere close to making the shuttle the pay-as-you-go enterprise promised years earlier to Congress. Significant taxpayer money was needed to underwrite the program, and those funds were fixed in the budget. The launch rate had to be doubled with the funds available. The end result was that more was being demanded of the existing manpower and equipment to achieve a higher flight rate. Everybody had a story about how this was overwhelming the various NASA teams. I recall being with an MCC controller when his boss brought in more work for him. The controller objected, "I haven't had a day off in six weeks. My wife and kids don't know who I am." The supervisor was sympathetic but had no other option. "We're all in the same boat. I don't have anybody else. You've got to do it." I could see it in both of their faces. They were exhausted, totally burned out. And they weren't the exception. In many areas NASA only had a first string. There was no "bench" to call on for substitutes. One of our STS-41D prelaunch hangar tests of Discovery had been botched for that reason. The first string had been supporting the pad checkout of the shuttle being readied for the next launch, so the contractor had scraped together a team for us from God-only-knew-where. One of the technicians had apparently been called from home because he arrived in the cockpit with the smell of alcohol on his breath. It was an outrageous violation and Hank Hartsfield confronted the man's supervisor about it. He apologized for the intoxicated worker as well as for the entire test debacle, adding, "I don't have enough people to cover everything."

...

An October 1, 1985 , interoffice Thiokol memo contained this plea: "HELP! The [O-ring] seal task force is constantly being delayed by every possible means." In his last paragraph, the memo's author, R.V. Ebeling, obliquely highlights the major problem of the operational STS... not enough people. "The allegiance to the O-ring investigation task force is very limited to a group of engineers numbering 8-10. Our assigned people in manufacturing and quality have the desire, but are encumbered with other significant work." He finished the memo with the warning, "This is a red flag."

Another indication of the crushing workload being borne by the Thiokol engineers is found in an October 4, 1985, activity report by Roger Boisjoly. "I for one resent working at full capacity all week long and then being required to support activity on the weekend ..." The operational shuttle program was devouring people.


(side note: Mullane's use of the word "operational" is almost certainly intended as a backhanded critique of the "operational" label given the shuttle following the first few flights, when in his contention the shuttle always was and always would be an experimental vehicle.)


So, if the contemporary staffing level was barely able to support ten missions per year, how then would you expect same staffing level to achieve twenty?



"There is no "taboo" on using nuclear weapons." -Julhelm
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What is Project Zohar?
"On a serious note (well not really) I did sometimes jump in and rate nBSG episodes a '5' before the episode even aired or I saw it." - RogueIce explaining that episode ratings on SDN tv show threads are bunk

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