Wednesday, September 29, 2010
John Garvey, Garvey Spacecraft Corporation,Tuesday, 9-28-10
Guest: John Garvey. Topics: Garvey Spacecraft Co. updates, students, nanosats, cubesats, building & launching rockets. We welcomed John Garvey, CEO of Garvey Spacecraft Corporation back to the program. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. In our first segment, John reviewed the activities of Garvey Spacecraft since his last visit with us in 20007. The company is now focusing on a nanosat capability. John described their goal in detail and explained the evolution of the company and his activities toward this new goal. We talked about the NASA FASTSAT program which John said needed to be supported as it represents an important path to the future. A listener asked him what type of launch costs he was focusing on and John talked about the difference between a launch price and the launch costs. We talked about costing a project out using students as a major source of labor. John had much to say about this so don't miss this discussion. Even in a student program, students do not always carry out all the labor and functions required to build and operate the rocket. Next, we focused on the use of federal ranges. As most of the Garvey Spacecraft customers are government and DOD, the use of a federal range is specified. He said it is a big mountain to climb to be able to use one but that its just part of doing business to go through all paperwork, regulatory and related requirements. I asked him about using commercial launch facilities such as Spaceport America and he said he mostly is launching orbital so that leaves out inland spaceports. Also, were he to be doing suborbital, he said it would likely be as a test for an eventual orbital mission so he would want to start the regulatory requirement process for that orbital launch early on so using the federal range from the outset makes sense to him. He had many interesting observations and facts to share with us on this issue so don't miss this segment. As we began our second segment, we talked about commercial versus government. John said he does not see a commercial market at this time given the government is the primary or only customer. We spent a good portion of this segment discussing the issue of potential commercial markets and again, this is a discussion you will want to hear as he shares with us his experience on the ELV team and the fact that ELVs were largely sold as a commercial program which never materialized. We concluded this segment by examining the market potential for nansoats and cubesats. In our third and final segment, I asked John what he would do differently going forward from what he has done in the past. This led us to a discussion of doing things incrementally and slow as compared to one big aggressive shot at the end result. We talked about this in terms of investors and due diligence. John said it may depend on what the goal is, raising money for example may define the program as a success. I suggested success was implementing the program and seeing it become a revenue producer. Again, a reason for would be investors to exercise extreme due diligence with space related investment opportunities. Another listener asked him to identify the problems and challenges that he dealt with in his aerospike engine. This then led us to a discussion of various rocket fuels and his ease in using and transporting them. Toward the end of the program, I asked John about cost accounting and the DCAA requirements. John shocked us by saying he now spends 80-90% of his time on accounting and DCAA issues. I asked him to elaborate on this and boy did he ever give us a glimpse of this cumbersome and burdensome process! Do not miss this discussion. If you have a question or comment for John Garvey, you can post it on the blog URL above. John can be reached by email at email@example.com. His website is www.garvspace.com.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
NASA FASTSAT, NanoSail-D, Monday, 9-27-10
Guests: Joseph Casas, Dean Alhorn, Mark Boudreaux. Topics: NASA FASTSAT, NanoSail-D Programs. We welcomed our three guests from NASA Marshall Space Flight Center to discuss the Fast, Affordable, Science and Technology Satellite (FASTSAT) and the NanoSail-D program, but we also talked about many other subjects. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. These three websites will be useful in furthering your interest in these programs. (1) www.nasa.gov/centers/marshall/pdf/480065main_FASTSAT_Facts_Final.pdf; (2) www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/smallsats/fastsat; (3) www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/smallsats/nanosaild.html. During our first segment, each of our guests provided a short opening statement about their participation in these programs and a description of the overall FASTSAT and NanoSail-D missions. We talked about the upcoming Nov. 19 launch on a Minotaur IV rocket from the federal Kodiak, Alaska launch complex. Our guests described the secondary payloads consisting of a 400 lb. satellite, the use of the ESPA ring and the capability to do secondary payloads across a wide array of multiple launch platforms. Regarding the NanoSail-D satellite, we discussed debris mitigation through the use of the solar sail which will add to drag at its orbital altitude and slow it down. During this segment, we discussed many other characteristics of the mission and the hardware. Later in the segment, we addressed the issue of the value proposition for fast tracking the project, including a risk vs. reward analysis to see if a mission could be created and actually flown while a student was still in school. You do not want to miss this value proposition discussion. One of the listeners asked about relationships between working on human spaceflight and the type of work and projects being discussed on today's program. Each of our guests responded to this question which took us into a broader discussion of education, skill sets, NASA interns, and student opportunities to learn and work on NASA projects. This is a must listen to discussion. Our guests listed several NASA programs and websites that focus on students. As a result of this discussion, The Space Show will work to produce a special program in support of NASA educational and intern programs. Our lead item in the second segment was about observing opportunities from the ground with NanoSail-D. Initially, its 650 km orbit will be too high but as the orbit decays and it gets lower, there will be armature astronomer viewing opportunities. To support this, a website has been established for posting pictures. Please visit www.nanosail.org as the site is already up and running. We then spent some time talking about the collaborative effort with Ames, Goddard, the Air Force, the Von Braun Center, and private companies such as Dynetics. A listener asked our guests for their take aways , both positive and negative, and lessons learned for fast tracking a project. This was yet another superb discussion which focused on the problems of controlling mission creep. All of our guests talked about the need to control mission creep and some of the rules and parameters they worked with to avoid the problem. Our mission creep discussion points can be extrapolated to other space projects so I urge everyone to be extra attentive as we learn that resistance is not futile with regards to mission creep. As we ended our program, each of our guests left us with excellent closing statements. I would like to offer a special thank you to Kimberly Newton, NASA Public Affairs, Marshall Space Flight Center who worked very hard to arrange this program with me and to bring these three guests to The Space Show audience. If you have questions or comments about this program, FASTSAT, NanoSail-D, or for any of our guests, email Kimberly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday, September 27, 2010
Jim Muncy On Space Policy, Sunday, 9-26-10
Guest: Jim Muncy. Topics: U. S. space policy. Jim Muncy returned to The Space Show for space policy updates, policy related information, and how to make space relevant for the American people and Congress. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. As we started the first of two segment for this two hour program, I suggested to Jim after reading his bio on air that things in the space policy and accomplishment arena had not advanced that much referring back to the issues Jim worked when he was on the staff of the House Science Committee's Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee a decade ago. Jim said that things had actually devolved from that older period. He then talked about space being about jobs and that what was missing was the connection to space, the relevance of it to the rest of us and certainly to members of Congress. This discussion took us through most of the first segment and its an important discussion. We also talked about the two compromise bills, the Senate and House versions, and Jim explained them to us, as well as why the Administration program was the right program and still is the right program. Jim brought up heavy lift and had much to say about this topic including that we really cannot afford it at this time. We talked space infrastructure, partnering with DOD and the commercial companies, and working to break the paradigm of fixed infrastructure which is very costly. We took several listener questions and a call by Charles in Mojave . Toward the end of this segment, we talked about the private companies taking federal money and the risk in their doing so. Jim had much to say on this issue so do not miss this important discussion. At the end of the first segment, we were talking depots, Jim referenced the HEFT report and the NASA plan to do a sort of inline shuttle derived heavy lift as opposed to the depot model. In segment two, a listener brought up the recent Thalia program and her comments on the frontier analogy. Jim then explained what was meant by the term frontier in space. Another listener asked about international partners for space development. This led to another important and substantive discussion with our guest. Later in this segment, we focused in on the NASA Authorization and the NASA Appropriation requirements by Congress. Jim explained that the authorization is not essential and we talked about why the House should accept the Senate version and vote on it this week. During the balance of the program, Jim talked about policy strategy, the need to develop the commercial segment and the fact that space must become relevant to both Congress and the people if we are to have a space program, especially in the context of future budget requirements for NASA. I believe this to be an important discussion and urge you to listen to it and tell others about it. Even if you disagree with Jim Muncy, the issues he is talking about strike at the core of our space policy debate. If you have a comment or question for Mr. Muncy, you can email him at email@example.com.
Saturday, September 25, 2010
OPEN LINES, FRIDAY, 9-24-10
Guest: Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston. Topics: Space policy, congress, FY 11 NASA budget. This program was an unplanned Open Lines program due to the last minute rescheduling of the planned program. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. I read a policy update statement from our friend Henry Vanderbilt of Space Access Society, pertaining to the differences in the House and Senate compromise bills being discussed, and the timing for a House vote on their bill. We also talked about an Orlando Sentinel article indicating that the House and Senate versions were now very close to one another. Our first caller was Bob Zimmerman who talked about the differences between the House and Senate versions of the compromise NASA plan to the plan proposed by President Obama on Feb. 1 of this year. Bob did not think the differences were all that much, that there was a real risk for budget cuts, including cuts of the NASA budget for FY 11 and that the FY-11 proposals represented "pork." He supported many of the provisions that President Obama put forth but they did not translate over to Congress. Bob is the Space Show guest on this subject and more on Thursday, Sept. 29 at 9:30 AM PDT. Following Bob, Amnon called to tell us that Astronauts4Hire has its first customer, an Australian beer company that will do zero-g experiments. You can learn more about this project from the press release his organization put out, www.astronauts4hire.org/2010/09/press-release-astronauts4hire-selected.html. Amnon also created a short survey for space enthusiasts and their friends and families to assess their knowledge about space and issues pertaining to space. He is interested in finding out if we in the space industry are doing a good job of getting the space word out about space. If you want to see and use his survey, you can find it on Amnon's Spacepirations blog at www.spacepirations.com/2010/09/next-space-shuttle-launch-informal-poll.html. Briefly, he is asking us to ask our family, coworkers and friends which Space Shuttle is getting ready for launch, when is the next launch, how many Space Shuttle launches remain after this one and what mission number is it going to be? If you have thoughts or suggestions about his survey, you can post them on his blog. I'm not so sure how many of us space cadets could answer these questions nor am I convinced that this is the priority info that we should have rolling off the tip of our tongues. Let Amnon know your thoughts and results should you use the survey. Our friend Charles called in from Mohave as he has not yet crossed the state line to Nevada on a permanent basis. He commented on the Space Access Society update and kept saying that it was like flogging a dead horse and then repeated his usual comments about policy, how to start off correctly in space development and the Microlauncher concept. He also provided a short personal history of how he landed in Mojave in the first place. During the balance of Open Lines, we continued to talk space policy, the likelihood of the NASA budget being cut depending on the outcome of the November 2nd elections, comments made by Dennis Wingo on his recent Space Show program about the dangers and risks of space companies taking federal money and more. In support of what Dennis said several weeks ago, I again referenced one of the panel discussions from the recent NewSpace conference and earlier comments on the subject by our friend Tom Olson. If you have questions or comments for any of the callers or those asking questions, its best to post them on the Out of the Box blog URL above. You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Don A. Nelson, Monday, 9-20-10
Guest: Don Nelson. Topics: NASA management problems and resolutions. We welcomes Don Nelson of Nelson Aerospace Consulting to the program. You can learn more about what Don Nelson spoke about on this show by visiting his website, www.nasaproblems.com. In addition, please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. In our first segment, Mr. Nelson introduced us to NASA management problems, their origins, and provided us with many examples of what he was talking about. One of the recurring themes throughout today's program focused on the need for accountability and oversight. He shared with us his experience with his shuttle work where his sign off signature needed to be reviewed by 22 oversight individuals who just rubber stamped his signature. He talked about growing the shuttle program to 24,000 people and why the larger number created more problems. This led us to a discussion about our national aerospace workforce and he said that the workforce was regarded as a national treasure. He defined that in a way that may surprise many of you so listen to what he said. During this segment, Don had much to say about Ares 1, Constellation, and Orion. He challenged the safety, especially with Orion, and said that to meet the changing flight characteristics of Ares 1 to solve those problem, NASA took out safety features in Orion to lighten the mass. He then talked about the static margin for Orion. About midway through this discussion, I asked Don to define static margin which refers to center of gravity. He said the static margin was very sensitive and every time a change came in, the static margin had to be redesigned. Don talked about the idea that NASA centers were not so team oriented and often individually focused for the center only, not for NASA as a whole. He said this was part of the management set of issues. In the second segment, he again stressed accountability and oversight. One of the listener questions dealt with the younger engineers and employees at NASA having a say in things and Don suggested no, they typically go along and don't rock the boat. In returning to the oversight issue, he said it needed to be independent with clout. I suggested this was needed across the board with government today and that pointing only to NASA was unrealistic since NASA is reflecting problems throughout government and today's society and culture. Jim in Alabama sent in a note asking why he was targeting Marshall in his comments. Don replied that he was not targeting Marshall but did say Marshall and JSC are the biggest contributors to the problems he was talking about, followed by KSC. Don was asked if he had any conflict of interest or financial interest in any outcome for NASA or any of its centers. Don said no to both. Don is supportive of keeping shuttle flying but as an unmanned robotic vehicle to hold the costs down. He said shuttle already has that capability. It would reduce about 2,000 lbs of mass in the front end, freeing that up for payload and adding crew escape to shuttle. Don then said we would be unable to solve the launch cost problem using expendable rockets. When asked about transitioning to commercial rockets, he said as long as they were expendable, the launch costs would remain very high. Near the end of the program, we talked about media reporting and suggested that the general interest news media would need to report a story such as NASA management issues. Listen to hear why. Our guest made it clear he was not NASA bashing, but was in fact a strong supporter of NASA, but one who wants to get it on track in solving the problems he highlights. He says he talks to top NASA people all the time and frequently goes to Congress with his message. If you have questions or comments for Don Nelson, you can email him through his website or by using email@example.com.
Monday, September 20, 2010
Bill White, Author of "Platinum Moon," Sunday, 9-19-10
Guest: Bill White. Topics: "Platinum Moon" and lunar development. We welcomed Bill White to the program to talk about his best selling book, "Platinum Moon." This book is available on the One Giant Leap Foundation Amazon book page and if you buy it from this page, Amazon contributes to The Space Show. Please use www.amazon.com/dp/0984405801?tag=onegialeafou-20. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. In our first segment, author Bill White told us how he got the idea for his book back in 2005 and said the idea evolved from thinking Mir Corp meets "Moonrush" which was a book authored by Dennis Wingo. He got the idea that there might be a high probability of platinum group metals (PGM) on the Moon. PGM consists of six metallic elements, ruthenium, palladium, iridium, rhodium, osmium, and of course platinum. Thus, Bill developed his story about a private business billionaire who puts together a private company consortium composed of representatives from various national space agencies to go to the Moon for PGMs. He develops a propellant depot at the Earth-Moon Lagrange Point 1, EML-1 and he named the spaceship for this project PGM-1. During this segment, Bill explained the makeup of Harold Hewitt, his main character and the force behind the company Lunar Materials LLC. A few listeners asked him why his book had such a strong Indian perspective to it to which Bill replied researching India and their space program was easy because it was based on the English language. We also talked about Singapore as the corporate headquarters and why Singapore. In the second segment, Bill told us why he chose the rocket fuels that he did and what he might do in a sequel to this book. He talked about water ice on the moon and we had a discussion about bringing PGM back to Earth, skewing the supply and demand curve and what that might do to the economics of any plan to bring PGM back here. We talked about using PGM and other materials and resources within space, i.e. In-Situ Resource Utilization, and then Bill told us how in his book the landing sites were chosen for his story. ITAR came up which is why he said his story focused on using Russian rockets. Later in this final segment, he got some questions about self-publishing books and he talked about the Amazon service, CreateSpace. For more information about the book including technical information, please visit www.platinum-moon.com If you have a question or comment for Bill White, you can reach him through his website or you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Bill's Twitter account is xplatinummoon.twitter.
Saturday, September 18, 2010
TIM PICKENS, Friday, 9-17-10
Guest: Tim Pickens. Topics: Dynetics, rocket propulsion, space policy, and more. We welcomed Tim Pickens back to the program for the first time since he sold his company, Orion Propulsion, to Dynetics, Inc. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. In our first segment, Tim started out talking about the need to have fun in business but that fun is not a business or policy entitlement. This was in the context of his now being employed with Dynetics after the sale of his own company. Tim did a terrific job in outlining the differences, the responsibilities, accountability and much more so pay attention to what he has to say on this issue. Next, we shifted focus to the Dynetics Google Lunar X Prize entry, Rocket City Space Pioneers. Tim explained their entry, talked about their team partners and the use of a partial payload capability on the Falcon 9. During this segment, Tim talked about the NanoMissile System (MNMS) project, microsats and related topics. He suggested we read a related recent article in the Huntsville Times at http://blog.al.com/huntsville-timesbusiness/2010/09/huntsville_company_working_to.html. In the second segment, listener John asked about outsourcing manufacturing and product acquisition. Tim had much to say on this topic which included a slightly different take on ITAR reform which you must hear as he called it a two headed sword. Heavy lift was an important discussion topic in this segment as were propellant depots. In our third and final segment, Tim was asked if he was consulting on the SS2 rocket motor and this led to a detailed discussion about hybrid rocket motors. After the hybrid discussion, I asked Tim about his education and if he learns mostly from the on the job training, books, articles, or from his college classes. Tim had lots to say about this, speaks on these subjects frequently to students and he shares with us the advice he gives to aerospace engineers entering their careers. He was asked about his work with Bigelow Aerospace and then he told us about building a water fueled rocket belt with parts from Home Depot and having his daughter fly it over the lake. We concluded our discussion with Tim Pickens talking about Dynetics, how it sees the future, its hiring, and more. If you have a question or comment for Tim Pickens about this show or Dynetics, please send it to Janet Felts at email@example.com and reference The Space Show in the subject line. Janet will make sure it gets to Tim or the appropriate person at Dynetics.
Friday, September 17, 2010
OPEN LINES, TUESDAY, 9-14-10
Guest: Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston. Topics: Space markets, NASA budget, heavy lift rockets, congressional continuing resolution, launch pricing strategy. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com./ At the opening of the program, the question I put to the audience for comment dealt with the possibility of a new deficit hawk focused congress cutting the NASA budget from the proposed $19 billion to $13 or $14 billion. As you will hear, listeners both called and used email/chat to share their thoughts on the probability of NASA's budget being cut by a new congress. Listeners were all over the place with their thoughts and analysis on this subject. What do you think is likely to happen with a new congress and the NASA FY 11 budget in the context of budget cuts should such cuts actually take place? Another issue that was discussed focused on heavy lift rockets and the difference between the House and the Senate versions of compromise bills for our space policy. We had a few calls from listeners in Huntsville offering us their thoughts on the policy debate from their Huntsville vantage point. When talking with Mark, one of the Huntsville callers, we talked about the recent article that appeared in the Decatur Daily titled "Decatur loses out in NASA bill." You can read this article which addresses competition in the NASA bill among ULA in Decatur, Marshall and ATK in Utah at www.decaturdaily.com/stories/Decatur-loses-out-in-NASA-bill,68150?content_source=&category_id=&search_filter=&event_mode=&event_ts_from=&list_type=&order_by=&order_sort=&content_class=&sub_type=stories&town_id=. Trent called in from Australia and asked me which I thought was more important, new markets or improvements in chemical rockets. I suggested markets because its very hard to plan and develop a new business without a market, but also its a real challenge when the transportation costs to and from the market are unknown. We then discussed possible improvements in chemical rockets as well as pricing strategy for commercial launchers. Listeners asked me what I thought would be best for the CEO background of an entrepreneurial or start-up space company, an engineer or a business type. I suggested the business, finance, and marketing type who then brings on board the engineers to help out but that control was with the business person. I also stressed the need for excellent communication between the business people and the engineering/scientific members of the team. Toward the end of the program I brought up the issue of government money and intervention to help enhance or facilitate the development of a new industry along with individual companies and we addressed the risks in taking government money and support. In this context, we talked about the transcontinental railroad and steam ship models from the early history of the United States. I then announced we would soon be doing a special show with a historian/economist on this important subject. If you want to send a note to anyone who called the show or sent in an email or chat, send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward it to the person you designate. Please remember to comment and participate using the new Space Show blog referenced above.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Dr. Pat Hynes Discusses The International Symposium for Personal and Commercial Spaceflight, Monday, 9-13-10
Dr. Pat Hynes Discusses The International Symposium for Personal and Commercial Spaceflight, Monday, 9-13-10
Guest: Dr. Pat Hynes. Topics: International Symposium for Personal and Commercial Spaceflight, Las Cruces, NM, Oct. 20-21, 2010, and related topics. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. Our program was divided into the usual three segments as Dr. Hynes took us through the agenda and plans for the Symposium. We began our discussion with a status of the industry report and the first day Keynote Address by Neil Sheehan, Pulitzer Prize winning author regarding his new book about ICBMs, "A Fiery Peace in a Cold War: Bernard Schriever and the Ultimate Weapon." Our guest took us through a fascinating part of space history based on this book and early day space financing to draw parallels with the financing of today's commercial space industry. You do not want to miss what Dr. Hynes had to say during this segment and the importance of having Neil Sheehan as the opening keynote speaker at this year's Symposium. Following the keynote address, the next panel was described which focuses on the future of the space industry based on its past history. Pat also described the logistics of the conference with all programs being in plenary and panel format, single track, and lots of amazing food for the breaks, lunches, and more. As we started or second segment, we talked conference logistics, travel to and from Las Cruces, registration, hotel space and then more about the program. In fact, you can follow along with our discussion by looking at the Symposium agenda at www.ispcs.com/program_2010.php. In addition to describing the balance of the first day program, Pat talked about the FAA award to New Mexico State University as the lead organization for their Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation. Dr. Hynes updated us on this most important and prestigious award and as you will hear, its part of the program for this year's conference. Our second segment concluded with a discussion of the AIAA sponsored reception followed by conference dinner Wednesday evening. We started our third and final segment with a discussion about the keynote by Lori Garver, NASA Deputy Administrator. Other panels discussed during this segment focused on the microgravity market, crew transportation systems, space policy, and creating demand without killing the industry, using free space tourism flights as an example. This is also a discussion you do not want to miss! Dr. Hynes then described the Friday event which is the Spaceport America Runway Dedication. If you are going to go to the Symposium, you definitely want to stay over to attend this ceremony the next day. For more information and if you have questions or comments for Dr. Pat Hynes, visit http://www.ispcs.com/. Contact information can be found by clicking the Contact tab at the top right of their home page, or by emailing email@example.com and referencing The Space Show in the subject line.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Dr. Bryan Laubscher On The Space Elevator, Sunday, 9-12-10
Guest: Dr. Bryan Laubscher. Topics: A comprehensive look at the space elevator. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com/. We welcomed back to the program Dr. Bryan Laubscher to update us on the recent space elevator conference and happenings within this industry. This is a two hour forty-five minute program with lots of listener questions and challenges, both by email and using the toll free line. The program is divided into two segments, the first segment lasting for about the first hour. General themes were present throughout the program so rather than breaking the show down by segment, I will tell you what we discussed. We were updated with developments from this year's conference. We learned about special conference guests Yuri Artsutanov and Jerome Pearson, the incredible climber contest and more. Visit The Space Elevator blog for more information, http://www.spaceelevatorblog.com/. Also visit the website for the Spaceward Foundation at http://www.spaceward.org/ and the site for the International Space Elevator Consortium (ISEC) at http://www.isec.info/. Discussion topics covered the progress made with the NASA Challenge climber contest, the thermal conductivity of carbon nanotubes, the markets for carbon nanotubes, and eventually the economics of the space elevator. Scattered throughout these discussions, Jack asked about Professor Richard A. Muller at Berkeley who has advanced the theory that we are residing in a binary star system with a red or brown dwarf that may, at some point, push asteroids from the Oort Cloud into the inner solar system. Do not miss what Bryan had to say about this. We talked about nuclear propulsion and alternatives to chemical rockets. The economics of the space elevator were challenged by several listeners in hard hitting phone calls during the second segment. As the transcontinental railroad was brought up, I referred everyone to last Friday's program with Berin Szoka and the economic paper he recommended we read on the transcontinental railroad at http://fee.org/nff/the-myth-of-the-robber-barons. The discussion evolved with multiple callers about launch rates, Falcon launchers and Space X, launch costs and their drivers, markets, and the future for the elevator. Sparks flew among Kelly, Charles, and Bryan! At one point John joined the callers to provide current Falcon launch costs from the Space X website and to opine on the value of space elevator research which was under attack by some of the listeners. Other problems were discussed re the elevator, specifically lightening strikes, orbital issues, and payloads. I realize this is a longer than usual Space Show program, even longer than most shows that run to two hours or slightly longer, but it is an important, must hear program and we thank Dr. Laubscher for staying with us to be responsive to the listeners. At the end of the show, propellant depots were put into the mix by John in Atlanta and in responding to John, Bryan also talked about elevator orbits and how the elevator puts a payload in LEO. The book, "The Space Elevator," will be on the OGLF Amazon book partners page later this week, www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/books. If you have a question or comment for Dr. Bryan Laubscher, please send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll forward it to him. Don't forget you can post your comments on the blog address above and I will make sure Bryan sees them.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Berin Szoka Addresses Internet and Space Analogies, Friday, 9-10-10
Guest: Berin Szoka. Topics: Internet and space analogies for market competition and policy. We welcomed back Berin Szoka to discuss with us the similarities of both internet and space policy for future development. Please remember that you can comment and rate this program on the new Space Show blog at http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. During our discussion, our guest referenced a paper he co-authored, "Cyber-Libertarianism: The Case for Real Internet Freedom. You can download this paper at http://techliberation.com/2009/08/12/cyber-libertarianism-the-case-for-real-internet-freedom. During our first segment, Mr. Szoka started off by telling us about the upcoming COMSTAC Sept. 17, 11AM EDT telecon on space debris and traffic management. The public is welcome to participate by calling 605-475-4825, Access code 976883#. Contact Mr. Szoka for more information if interested. Berin then started addressing space law and we discussed the new Bob Zubrin idea of the Transorbital Railroad. Berin then began a discussion concerning government regulation, the old Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC), and the role of government in the railroads and with the Kelly Airmail Act of 1925, applying both to internet and space regulation. From this point in our discussion, Berin then looked at the long, comprehensive history of government regulation through today to the internet and then space policy. He described Internet and Space Exceptionalism, suggested the best role for government and its application to enable commercial and market development, and suggested positive actions for government to take with regards to regulation. In our second segment, Todd from San Diego asked how we could have a meaningful debate given the state of our educational system, the lack of a real fact based media, and the amount of time it takes to research and do due diligence in searching the internet for accurate facts on important stories and events rather than relying on traditional and new media. Berin had much to say to Todd on this issue. A few minutes later, Bryan called in to say that he did not think we could move forward by using the same technology to go to space and we needed new breakthrough technology to LEO to really see change take place. Berin agreed and had much to say about this issue as well, including our risk averseness which he said was a real problem. During this segment, Berin went into more detail regarding space libertarianism and space exceptionalism. He said we often must select a course that is far from perfect, that is, we must choose that which is "less bad." Berin also talked about the track record of government operating transportation systems, including the space shuttle, as compared to private sector operations and control As we neared the end of the program, Berin said he writes articles at http://techliberation.com/ for those of you wanting to follow his work on these subjects. At the very end of the program, he talked about vision and suggested the book "The Vision of the Anointed" by Thomas Sowell. If you have questions or comments for Berin Szoka, please email him at email@example.com.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Dan Adamo On Propellant Depots, Tuesday, 9-7-10
Guest: Dan Adamo. Topics: On orbit propellant depots and associated launch and flight dynamics. We welcomed Dan Adamo back to The Space Show to talk about on orbit propellant depots. Please remember that you can post comments, your own material, and even rate this show at the new Space Show blog, "The Space Show's Way Outside The Box Ideas And Plans Blog" at http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. Please use it. Our show was more than two hours and divided into two segments. During our first segment, Dan introduced us to on orbit propellant depots and started out by describing the ISS as a propellant depot. Dan then proceeded to discuss possible depot locations and geometric constraints in servicing and working with depots in various locations. During this first segment, we had lots of email and chat questions from listeners (the phone line only opened up in the second segment), addressing libration point locations, lunar depots, LEO depots, Sun-Earth system depots and more. Dan took us through the orbital and flight mechanics so essential to making a depot location useful and economic. Also in this discussion, Dan talked about launch seasons and launch windows, explained the differences, and told us that for the Earth-Sun system, the launch season and window were essentially the same. He also introduced us to external factors impacting launch windows such as range safety issues and weather, along with launch turnaround issues. As you will hear, understanding the orbital and flight dynamics impacts the location of the depot and can easily make or break it as an acceptable location. Another issue that he brought up was space traffic management for a specific depot, something we have never done and cannot do as of today. Toward the end of this segment, nuclear propulsion was discussed and we asked Dan to prioritize space policy issues were he the man in charge. As we started the second segment, we opened the phone lines to listeners. Our first caller, John from Atlanta, wanted to know more about a lunar oriented depot. In talking about lunar depots as compared to LEO depots, Dan took us through what was involved in the Apollo lunar landings so we could better understand the issues with lunar and other depots. Other listeners had heavy lift questions, suggesting a depot was a better investment than heavy lift rockets. See what you think after listening to Dan on this subject. Regarding LEO depots, Dan talked about the need to be able to predict the orbital plane, a problem for a LEO depot. Lots of questions came up about using the ISS location for depots and the penalty paid to get there. The idea of replication was discussed, for example having 28 ISSs on orbit for lunar access. Dallas called in and talked about depots needing three things, costs, performance, and orbital alignment. Depots were viewed as one possible facilitator for helping to drive up launch rates and other things. At the end, John Jurist phoned in to ask Dan and Dallas to list as a closing statement, their priorities for space policy. Listen to what each said and then John listed his three or four priorities as well. You can ask questions or comment on the blog above or send your comments to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward them to Dan Adamo.
Monday, September 6, 2010
TAYLOR DINERMAN, SUNDAY, 9-5-10
Guest: Taylor Dinerman. Topics: Military space reorganization and policy, NASA and U.S. space policy. We welcomed back Taylor Dinerman to update us on important changes happening with the reorganization of military space within the Air Force, along with updates pertinent to the ongoing space policy debate. Please remember that you can comment on this program and rate it by visiting the newest Space Show Out of the Box blog at http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com. During our first segment, Taylor talked to us about the present structure of military space and its brief history to let us know how we got to where we are today. He then outlined many of the changes that are taking place and have already taken place, especially with regards to AF acquisition. In making his points, Taylor mentioned many of the military and intelligence programs and how they might be impacted by the reorganization changes. We also talked about the motivation behind the changes, expected outcomes, and more. As we started our second segment, we continued discussing the organizational changes and the impact upon space systems, potentially including GPS, military communication satellites, NOAH, NASA, and other programs. We talked about the role of budget tightening in this process and how these changes originated. We also talked about a fifth military service, U.S. Space Command. Later in the segment, we switched to discussing space policy. Here, Taylor focused on the compromise bill coming from the House of Representatives and the impact this might have on the possible reelection of the Arizona Democrat who is the Chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics , Gabrielle Giffords. Taylor also talked about FY 11 outcomes and what might actually carry over to FY 12. The COTS program was discussed and we talked about Dragon by Space X and Orion. Later in this discussion, when asked about the future of the human spaceflight program, Taylor talked about the possibility of not being able to use the term astronaut given we might not have an American launcher for sending astronauts to space. When asked if using these terms was that important, he said it was. Listen and see what you think. We discussed heavy lift and the return to the Moon. At the end of the program, Taylor received another listener question, this one asking him if we cooperate with other nations regarding military space. Don't miss what Taylor said about this cooperation. If you have questions or comments for Taylor Dinerman, please send them in care of me at email@example.com. Don't forget to post your comments and more on the above listed Space Show blog.
Saturday, September 4, 2010
AIAA Space 2010 Interviews, Friday, 9-3-10
Guests: Josh Hopkins; Larry Price; Steve Harrington. Topics: Near Earth Asteroids, Orion Crew Capsule, space policy, aerospace engineering, academics, turbo pumps, pistonless pumps. This Space Show program consists of three interviews back to back separated by about ten plus seconds of silence. Josh Hopkins was interviewed on Tuesday, August 31, Larry Price was interviewed on Wednesday, Sept. 1, and Steve Harrington was interviewed on Thursday, Sept. 2. As you will hear, the Harrington interview was a change of pace and topic discussion from the first two interviews. With Josh Hopkins, we talked about visiting Near Earth Asteroids with the Orion Crew Capsule, why, how it could be done, the orbital dynamics of such a visit and more. Josh also talked about the Lockheed Martin Plymouth Rock' Deep Space Asteroid Mission. You can find the Plymouth Rock material and information as follows: The Plymouth Rock material mentioned by Josh can be found as follows: The study report is here:
The briefing charts are here:
The brochure is here:
In the next interview, Larry Price updated us on the Orion Crew Capsule development from his last discussion with us which was Sept. 2009 at Space 2009 in Pasadena, CA. Larry clarified the status of Orion for us with regards to the ongoing space policy discussion, we talked about Orion capabilities, using it for the ISS, deeper space missions, etc. We talked about the crew escape system tests at White Sands, NM and how the system worked. Larry updated us on the flight testing schedule which would likely use a Delta 4 Heavy but that Orion would also be designed to use the Atlas 5. I asked him about comparisons with the EELVs to the original Constellation hardware. We talked about policy, Congress, funding, and more. In the last interview with Dr. Steve Harrington of Flometrics, we got an update on efforts to market his pistonless pump, why a launcher might want to consider this pump over a traditional turbo pump and the differences between the two. Steve shared his opinions of the aerospace policy debate and the industry based on his experiences with it over the past several years, both as an aerospace engineering professor at UCSD and one working on hardware in the industry, plus his many space conferences which he has regularly attended. If you have a question or comment for any of our guests, please direct them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward them to the guest of your choice. Remember, you can comment on this program on the new Space Show Way Outside The Box blog at http://thespaceshowoutsidethebox.blogspot.com.