[FPSPACE] The problems with MIT's analysis
epgrondine at hotmail.com
Mon Jan 5 23:09:48 EST 2009
Hi Jim -
I'll have to disagree with both MIT and you. I'm going to start with the "you" part.
"First, it falls for the classic wish-fulfillment fantasy that playing
nice together in space—forming partnerships on significant space
projects—can actually compel terrestrial nations to become more
friendly to each other despite deep-seated conflicting goals."
First off, Jim, here in the real world the ties with Russia proved invaluable when it
was necessary to move against the Taliban in Afghanistan. (More billions than NASA will see in the next decade.) That simply would not have been possible without those ties, and the ties with Russia through ISS were a part of them.
the report promotes the view that the cost of large space projects can
only be afforded if they are shared by an international
alliance—contrary to all experience, including that of the ISS, that
splitting national responsibilities for integrated projects makes them
more expensive, not less.
Second, ever hear of Ariane?
Furthermore, what conflicts are you referring to? Are you out looking for enemies? If you're involved in an arms race or military operation, then you do not have money for space projects.
You're also leaving out of your analysis the diversion of resources from ISS by Walt Anderson and Rick Tumlinson for MirCorp, and there's some space cadets.
As far as planetary defense goes, which is the major pressing space
problem, China and Russia would no more rely upon us for warning than
we would rely upon them.
"And thirdly, it promotes a dangerously
diversionary and dead-ended theory for the root cause of space
disasters such as the loss of the shuttle Columbia and its crew: that
there was just not enough money, a factor that can easily be fixed by
budgetary largesse. Using such views as foundations for policy
decisions in the coming years can only result in more waste, more
losses, and a lot more tears."
I'll agree with you there.
The root cause of Columbia was engineering stupidity, the same kind of engineering stupidity that has brought us Ares 1. Apparently no one down at KSC understood that the launch debris filming/video systems were essential to safe Shuttle operations. Stupid. The warnings of those who were aware, and did examine what was available were ignored. Stupid. The analysis of the foam strike was inadequate. Stupid. Some damage observations were not made. Stupid.
The problem was never worked, the crew was not even given their best chance.
I hope (I've forgotten how to pray) in about 2 weeks and about 2-3 months, and the Columbia failure will be dealt with.
Now how did those idiots get in those jobs? Stupidity at the top.
Finally, after Columbia the only way to the ISS was via Russian Soyuz. If the Ares 1 stupidity is allowed to continue, what happens when it fails? Be honest now - physics is. Thiokol can continue their hunt for the Direct team and spin as much PR as they want, but the physics will still be the same.
PS 1 - Administrator Griffin is still standing in contempt of Congress's instructions to him in the George Brown Jr. amendment. I worked myself to a stroke on the impact hazard, and this guy ignores the instructions of the Congress? House and Senate, Republicans and Democrats? In case you haven't noticed yet, 95% of the people living in North America were killed by impact about 10,900 BCE, and there's been other big ones recently.
PS 2 - While I admire his in-situ fuel cycle, Zubrin's Mars architecture (and Ares 5) stink as well, IMO.
Mars is simply not like the Earth; get over it.
Man and Impact in the Americas
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