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#9081 - 08/27/06 10:54 PM 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
Mike Kremer Offline

Megastar

Registered: 10/16/04
Posts: 1696
Loc: London UK
Billionaire Elon Musk is convinced that life on Earth for humans will some time come to an end from either a disease epidemic resulting from a large conventional war, or some other natural catastrophe.
He told Forbes Magazine "From the perspective of ensuring the survival of humanity, the most powerful thing we can do is, establish a second, self sustaining civilisation outside of Earth, and the only place thats really feasable is Mars"

Make no mistake Elon Musk, at 35 years old, is no fruitcake, he is one of the biggest shareholders of eBay, having sold them his company PayPal. Before that he sold, Zip2 to Compaq Computers.
He has convinced NASA that we must do something dramatic to reduce the cost of getting into space. "If we can get the cost low, we can extend life to another Planet"
He is serious about his ambitions in space. To date he has sunk $100m of his personal wealth into 'Space Exploration Technologies' which produced the SpaceX space shuttle, which he privately funded.

Now his ambitions have taken a giant leap forward with a decision by NASA to award contracts worth $485m for his SpaceX shuttle to service the International Space Station.
NASA's contract for 'Commercial Orbital Transportation Services' will be shared by SpaceX, and Kistler Aerospace Corp.
An extraordinary aspect of NASA's decision is that neither winning contractor has yet succesfully sent a craft into orbit, nor achieved the complicated manouever of docking with the Space station.

Musk said "I am too young to retire, besides, in the darkest corners of the cosmos, there are dangerous aliens to be found lurking in the form of cost-concious accountants", Commercial launchings chip in at about $5000-$10000 per lb. But Musk reckons his SpaceX rockets can do the same for $2000 per lb of payload.
The prize is a market worth $billions. Americas two big rocket makers Lockheed Martin, and Boeing have been priced out by Russia, France, Ukraine and now China.
Elon Musk is not alone, with him are Paul Allen co-founder of Microsoft. also Burt Rutan, a brilliant engineer, who won the $10m Ansari X prize in 2004. Again there is Sir Richard Branson of Virgin Galactic UK, and Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.com, with his Blue Origin, sub orbital rocket. Also John Carmack, developer of Quake and Doom computer games, who has founded 'Armadillo Aerospace' near Dallas.
Musk's latest greatly updated SpaceX shuttle is due to launch from the Pacific Island Atoll of Kwajalein this December. It will be carrying two special NASA hardware payloads.

***Thoughts
Seems the money is there. But "Beam me up Musky"
I'm not sure
_________________________
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"You will never find a real Human being - Even in a mirror." ....Mike Kremer.



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#9082 - 08/27/06 11:59 PM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
dehammer Offline
Megastar

Registered: 03/23/06
Posts: 1089
Its not like he is the first to see this. Perhaps he has the buisness sense to make it work.

personally, i think hes wrong about mars. we should not put all our eggs in earth or mars baskets, we should have more. like self sufficient stations, and bases on mars, moons and cetes.

mars would be a good start, but i believe the station would be of more help in the begining.
_________________________
the more man learns, the more he realises, he really does not know anything.

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#9083 - 09/27/06 12:42 AM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
jjw Offline
Superstar

Registered: 09/07/05
Posts: 636
Loc: USA
Hi Mike:

I some times I think that the very rich tend to focus on ways to live longer with more vision than on how to get the most for their money,

I have no documentation for it now but I thought all the egg heads agreed that the doorway to the outer planets would be from our Moon. Consider the number of trips required to make even the most basic shack on Mars that would stand on its own and provide comfort for a few stalwarts. So far I think we have had more failures (as have the Russians) going to Mars than succeses.

Any way, it sounds good. Is there some way real people can benefit from the billions they will waste? The story includes:

"The prize is a market worth $billions. Americas two big rocket makers Lockheed Martin, and Boeing have been priced out by Russia, France, Ukraine and now China."

Why is that? We are no longer competitive?
What a shame!
jjw

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#9084 - 09/27/06 01:54 AM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
dehammer Offline
Megastar

Registered: 03/23/06
Posts: 1089
actually, there is no agreement amoung them. the closest to any agreement that has been reached is that if you can reach low earth orbit, your half way to the stars. Once we reach that point, it becomes a shouting match about which would be better.

I myself think it would be better to use solar sails (light powered actually) to grap a few near earth asteroids and turn them into space ships. then you go with a large enough crew to where ever it is you decide you want to go.
_________________________
the more man learns, the more he realises, he really does not know anything.

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#9085 - 09/27/06 06:53 PM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
jjw Offline
Superstar

Registered: 09/07/05
Posts: 636
Loc: USA
Off to almost Mars:

Google is loaded with data on failed Mars Missiona by just about everybody. You must look for them. True there were a few good ones to.

"Mars probe program
In 1969, the Soviet Union prepared an ambitious 5-ton orbiter called M-69. Two copies of the probe were both lost in launch mishaps involving the new and powerful Proton rocket.

In 1971, shortly after Cosmos 419 failed to launch, the Soviet Union successfully sent Mars 2 and Mars 3, nearly a decade after the launch of Mars 1, all part of the Mars probe program. The Mars 2 and 3 probes each carried a lander, both arriving on Mars in 1971. The Mars 2 lander entered Mars' atmosphere at too steep an angle, causing it to crash, and the Mars 3 lander functioned for only 20 seconds after landing. They were the first human artifacts to touch down on Mars.

In 1973, the Soviet Union sent four more probes to Mars: the Mars 4 and Mars 5 orbiters and the Mars 6 and Mars 7 flyby/lander combinations. Of the four, only Mars 5 succeeded; it transmitted 60 images before suffering a transmitter failure. Mars 6's lander transmitted data during descent but failed on impact. Mars 4 and 7 both missed the planet."

The brits lost one in 2003 and we lost some more along the way. Suppose we speed things up and we send a large craft to Mars and it takes 3 months to get there. If the craft is intended to be the temporary habitat they crew must stay there. If not then a craft of weight must be retained in orbit to bring them back in another 3 months. A few trips like this will use up years and with the prospect of a 10% nominal faiilure ratio it will be a long hard effort. From the moon you can build the habitat and send the constructed habitat on to Mars when your ready ready with less fuel expenditure and greater pay loads.

Not my field so I will stand correct by some one in the know. Their plan will not tollerate many failed missions and that could doom it.
jjw

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#9086 - 09/27/06 09:00 PM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
dehammer Offline
Megastar

Registered: 03/23/06
Posts: 1089
problem with useing the moon as a base, is that you still have gravity to contend with. Even though its considerably lighter, you still have to get the entire thing off the surface. Considering the size, the most likely event would be that it would have to be assembled in space. so why bother going to the moon for material in the first place. Every week there are asteroids of small but useable size that strick the earth or pass it nearby. Im not talking about things miles long, im talking about ones that are 10 to 50 meters in size. most of those break up and are burned up in the atmosphere, with a small number actually hitting somewhere. Most of them hit water (the earth is 70 percent water after all), and the ones that dont often hit unnoticed. If we were to send up a system to spot these and the ones that by pass the earth without hitting. and send out solar sails ships (largely remote controlled), we could begin to assemple the material for the ship for little money. solar sails would use the energy of the light of the sun to manuver. The largest cost would be to send it out and to manufacture it.
_________________________
the more man learns, the more he realises, he really does not know anything.

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#9087 - 09/28/06 07:08 PM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
Uncle Al Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 540
Loc: Southern California
BillGates seeks to "save Africa." Elon Musk seeks to award functional humanity a new frontier. Uncle Al votes for the right end of the bell curve. Pull on your boots, load your weapons, and move out.

If it isn't tacked down it belongs to Homo sapiens. If if can be pried loose it wasn't tacked down. The meek shall inherit the Earth, and Hell with it.
_________________________
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http://www.mazepath.com/uncleal/
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#9088 - 09/28/06 09:44 PM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
dehammer Offline
Megastar

Registered: 03/23/06
Posts: 1089
The meek can have the earth, the rest of us are going to the stars. I personally believe that we have to leave the earth eventually or die as a species.
_________________________
the more man learns, the more he realises, he really does not know anything.

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#9089 - 09/29/06 05:25 PM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
Al ... you've been reading way too much Heinlein.

"Place your clothes and weapons where you can find them in the dark."
~ Robert Heinlein
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DA Morgan

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#9090 - 09/30/06 11:49 PM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
jjw Offline
Superstar

Registered: 09/07/05
Posts: 636
Loc: USA
deh:

Your view implies that Earth is somehow doomed!

You, and any others that may harbor that view will never find or create a habitat like Earth so save it and enjoy it. Life in some wharehouse on Mars is like humans going back to the stone age as I see it- very like much worse. No lakes or rivers and oceans. No forests and abundant wild life. Your dream would be like captivity.
jjw

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#9091 - 10/01/06 12:44 AM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
Te Urukehu Offline
Member

Registered: 09/08/06
Posts: 51
Loc: Aotearoa
I think most people in this forum are assuming that they or their kin will be on the space ship heading towards Mars.
_________________________
Darkness is but the sum total of Creation inclusive of the Light.

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#9092 - 10/01/06 04:40 AM Re: 'ELON MUSK' gets NASA Backing to go to MARS
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
I hope they are. And the sooner the better.
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DA Morgan

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