David Thompson
Subscribe
Blog powered by Typepad

« Heed Ye, O Heed Ye, the Agonies of the Left | Main | Hefty Leather Buttons »

September 21, 2015

Comments

Sam

Building a scale model of the planets and their orbits is harder than you’d think.

*raises hand* What if you don't have 7 miles of desert and a nearby mountain?

R. Sherman

OT: Congrats on the Instalanche for the "Agonies of the Left" post.

David

Congrats on the Instalanche for the “Agonies of the Left” post.

Oh bugger. We need more chairs.

R. Sherman

Oh bugger. We need more chairs.

I'll make a beer run.

Crazed Weevil

What happened to Pluto? Damn it, when I grew up there were nine planets!

Graham Asher

There's a bigger scale model in Sweden, but it's hard to see all at once unless you have your own spaceship: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sweden_Solar_System .

Farnsworth M Muldoon

What if you don't have 7 miles of desert and a nearby mountain?

I believe you can rent a bulldozer.

Angus Black

How politically correct can you get? Where's Pluto!!!!!

Quint&Jessel, Sea of Azof, Bly, UK

Wonderful, except they left Pluto out. To be fair, they'd have had to level a lot of desert. Oooh, SJW sez, "Look at them, wrecking the ecosystem of the beautiful mudflats!"

Darleen

wonderful film ...

and the astronauts & footage of Apollo 11 at the end...

I was 15 at the time of the moon landing ... my whole family gathered and watching in the living room.

Not too long after watching Neil Armstrong, I walked outside to join my grandfather as we stared up at the moon on that bright summer night. He was born in 1901 and was quite the sci-fi fan. He grew up in a time when things like having electricity and indoor plumbing wasn't usually available, let alone a regular expectation.

He said, "when I was a boy, if I told my friends we'd live to see man really land on the moon, they would have considered me crazy."

Damn, in seven years I'll be as old as he was at the time and why don't we have science stations on the Moon and Mars?

Tman

I have a friend whose grandmother took a horse drawn carriage west across the US in the early 1900's and lived to see Armstrong take his fateful step. Sending 24 people to the moon is impressive enough on its own, but considering the technology they had then, versus what we have now, versus what they had prior (say in the early 1900's) makes your head spin.

We went a long time as a species before this sudden explosion in accomplishments. It almost makes one optimistic about the future.

jones

I can see my house.

Chester Draws

Damn, in seven years I'll be as old as he was at the time and why don't we have science stations on the Moon and Mars?

Because there is no science that can be done on the moon that can't be done in inner orbit. And there's basically no science that can't be done better by machine robot than be people.

The scientific case for manned space flight is close to non-existent. Manned space flight is all about national prestige.

You're looking in the wrong places for your sense of wonder. Think of the deep sea diving systems that are now ubiquitous, that explore a system just as dangerous as the moon but far more interesting. Or all the science stations in the Antarctic, also working in deadly conditions. Or all the high-speed and microscopic video work that explore situations previously inaccessible to mankind.

Mars is different. People who go to Mars won't be coming back, and the supply of suitably suicidal scientists is low.

Tman

Chester, you sell our humanity short.

It's more than national prestige that drives manned space flight. It about the survival of our species.

Elon Musk is trying to colonize Mars so that we have a backup to humanity's hard drive. You're free to doubt him but many people smarter than you have lost that bet before.

How (and Why) SpaceX Will Colonize Mars

In the longer term we will need to leave this solar system and find somewhere else to carry on.

That's the scientific case for manned space flight.

wtp

I'm with Chester on this one. If you've ever seen the tremendous time and energy that is put into any government project, let alone one where some of the best and brightest of human life and national prestige are on the line in sending humans out in even low earth orbit for extended periods of time, the costs are astronomical and the waste exponentially so. Pun intended or not. The impact to time and schedule, the excessively large payload required, the complicating factors of such necessary to keep humans alive in an environment enormously more dangerous than anything any living form of life was designed for actually limit the possibilities of human achievement. If Elon Musk (see dicentra's link from other post here: https://twitter.com/BoredElonMusk) wants to spend his own money on such, more power to him. But I'm not sure that's how he really rolls.

Hal

The scientific case for manned space flight is close to non-existent.
--and--
It's more than national prestige that drives manned space flight. It about the survival of our species.
--and--
. . the costs are astronomical and the waste exponentially so

Errrr, No.

Not even.

The issue is not whether or not to put a body up there, the repeatedly proven issue is the spinoffs when we do put a body up there.

In 1979, notable science fiction author Robert A. Heinlein was asked to appear before a joint committee of the House and Senate after recovering from one of the earliest known vascular bypass operations to correct a blocked artery that was causing transient ischemic attacks; in his testimony, reprinted in the book Expanded Universe, he characterized the technology that made the surgery possible as merely one of a long list of spinoff technologies from space development.

The reason we go, and still go, is not the real neat stuff we hope we'll get when we get there, it is the real neat stuff that we know from proven experience that we will get during the process.

wtp

The issue is not whether or not to put a body up there, the repeatedly proven issue is the spinoffs when we do put a body up there.

Not to definitively answer the question one way or another, but one must admit the possible, though I would say quite probable, opportunity costs involved. The wealth had to come from somewhere. In order to build a $100,000,000,000 (or insert your own appropriate number of zeros) rocket ship, the equivalent value of stuff must be taken from the rest of society. The ingenuity of those designers and engineers presumably would have been occupied by some alternate purpose that consequently went unserved. Emotional/intangible benefits of national pride, inspiration, etc. significantly complicate the equation.

Chester Draws

The spin-offs from space are limited. Try to name something that could not have been discovered on the earth but only in space.

The spin-offs from manned space flight are effectively zero. Hell, we're still going up in effectively WWII rockets, so little progress has been made for all that money.

I'm far from selling humanity short. I listed a whole bunch of amazinng explorations into foreign environments that are marvellous. And more likely to have spin-offs too. And I love those recent flights to comets, Pluto etc. It's only putting people in rockets leaves me cold.

Darleen

It's only putting people in rockets on carracks that leaves me cold.

/King John II of Portugal

Tman

" Try to name something that could not have been discovered on the earth but only in space."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_Positioning_System

Too easy.

"The spin-offs from manned space flight are effectively zero."

Not true. Kidney dialysis machines, fetal heart monitors, programmable heart pacemakers, there are others, but ultimately none of those are possible without pushing the limits of our biology through manned space flight.

"It's only putting people in rockets leaves me cold."

If this leaves you cold then you are dead to the world.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNm1LVJTJ2k

Darleen

Faster, please

The British architects behind Apple's new 'spaceship' campus have revealed their next project - a manned base for Mars.

It will be built by 3D printing robots on the Martian surface, giving man its first permanent base on another planet.

Foster + Partners New York’s design for a modular habitat on Mars has even been shortlisted amongst 30 finalists for the 3D Printed Habitat Challenge organised by America Makes and NASA, the firm revealed today.

The comments to this entry are closed.

For Amazon US use this link .

Your filthy consumerism supports this blog.

Blogroll