31
   

Should NASA go to Mars or back to the Moon?

 
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Sun 31 Oct, 2010 11:14 am
@rosborne979,
NASA ain't goin noplace except possibly to Mecca or Medina, as per orders from Bork Obunga. If you want to get to Mars, this is what you'll need for starters:

http://cgi.ebay.com/Brand-New-Rosetta-Stone-Japanese-Level-1-2-3-/280580896468?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4153ecb6d4#ht_532wt_931
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  3  
Reply Thu 7 Jul, 2011 06:26 pm
At this point I guess NASA should just try to get off the ground again.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jul, 2011 07:35 pm
@rosborne979,
Quote:
At this point I guess NASA should just try to get off the ground again.


There is by reports military black projects that give the US the capability to place men into earth orbit.
0 Replies
 
High Seas
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jul, 2011 07:46 pm
@rosborne979,
Quote:
Humans have not left Earth orbit since the end of the Apollo missions in 1972 and there is no prospect of a genuine mission to Mars on the horizon. The technical hurdles of building a rocket capable of reaching Mars while protecting its crew from the intense radiation of space are enormous.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/feb/11/mission-mars-moscow-sandpit

How much radiation is involved, exactly, do you know? Wouldn't the shielding now on the Space Station be enough?
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 03:38 am
@High Seas,
I don't know.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 04:31 am
@High Seas,
That may well be sufficient shielding--but keep in mind that they and their food and water will need to be shielded for a period of more than a year and a half, and they will need to be boosted into orbit with that shielding. Additionally, they will need shielded exercise facilities to combat microgravity--19 months is a lot longer than people currently spend on the space station. Once they get there, they'll have to be shielded on the surface of the planet because Mars has no magnetic field. Any shielding which relies on large amounts of metal will ahve to be boosted into orbit and carried along with them. Shielding which were based on an artificial magnetic field, something they might use on the surface of the planet, would entail carrying enormous amounts of fuel, or the equipment for power generation from solar energy.
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 04:46 am
@Setanta,
If only humanity didn't have to spend it's money on The War on Drugs, wars over religion, war for land and war for oil, we would have plenty to get some space exploration done.

I suspect that The War on Drugs and the secondary costs associated with it wastes ten times more than NASA would need to get a Mars mission done. Such a pity.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 04:59 am
@rosborne979,
Carl Sagan once observed that the cost overruns on defense contracting during the period of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs exceeded NASA's entire budget by more than three to one.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 05:05 am
@rosborne979,
Shielding can be looked at like a "capital investment" You really only need to do it once and then youre set . Id consider sending cargo ships to the landing surface all loaded with a ivilizational amount of stuff, so that when the human loaded one is on track, it serves as just a portion of all the specialty stuff they will need (like air extraction machinery to extract O2 from the plentiful oxide minerals on the surface.

When the martian atomsphere was blasted away when its magneto was trashed (probably by simple cooling), UCAl had calculated that it occured somewhat around 3.9 B years ago .(about the same time that our Greenland rocks show the presence of C12 rather than C13 in abundance ) They lost life and we gained it, coincidence? are they somehow related events?
I have no idea but it'd make a great sci fi story abut the "foundation Designers"
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 05:11 am
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:
Id consider sending cargo ships to the landing surface all loaded with a ivilizational amount of stuff, so that when the human loaded one is on track, it serves as just a portion of all the specialty stuff they will need (like air extraction machinery to extract O2 from the plentiful oxide minerals on the surface.


I was just thinking the same thing, roughly. If we ever set up there permanently, we could obviate the radiation problem by tunnelling deep under the surface, and carrying out just about everything by remotely controlled mechanical devices--no need to send Little Johnny out for a quart of O2. If you were using mechanical miners on the surface, the only thing you'd need to shield would be their little pea brains--you could obviate the communications problem by using good, old-fashioned tube radios.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 05:15 am
@Setanta,
thts how the got all that dilithium )or was it unobtainium?)
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  0  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 06:12 am


I always thought dilithium was just an enhanced drug for controlling bi-polar disorder . . .
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 07:23 am
@rosborne979,
rosborne979 wrote:
At this point I guess NASA should just try to get off the ground again.

Good point. I think it's a travesty to talk about the Moon and Mars when NASA isn't even sustaining its capacity to launch missions in low-Earth orbits.
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 08:22 am
@farmerman,
If I recall correctly, the astronauts are in more danger from secondary radiation sources (the hull or shielding becoming radioactive) than they are from primary solar radiation. Biological materials are transparent to most solar radiation, but metal is not.

A solar flare would be a different proposition, however.

So a relatively small radiation shelter would be sufficient, provided the astronauts have sufficient warning. Since the dangerous particles travel at less than the speed of light, there should be ample warning while they are in flight.

Folks roaming around on the surface could require more time to get to shelter.

Edit: Coronal mass ejections are another danger, but the types of radiation appear to be similar to solar flares.
DrewDad
 
  2  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 08:28 am
@Thomas,
As some wag once put it: "We can put a man on the moon, but we can't put a man on the moon."
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 08:38 am
@DrewDad,
The big problem with a Mars expedition is the projected 18 month duration. Over that period of time, even low-level exposure becomes critical. Same with microgravity.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 09:22 am
@Setanta,
Have not men been in microgravity for at least as long as 18 months in the old Russian space station for example?
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 09:24 am
@BillRM,
Yes, and that's how we know that it causes serious health problems. People have survived a lifetime of low level lead poisoning--that's not a good reason to expose oneself.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 09:33 am
@Setanta,
If we had waited until the health of long term sailors could be guarantee then the New World would had been founded in the late 17 century instead of 1492.

Risks of all kinds including health risks is the price men had always been willing to assume in exploring and as long as the crew is willing to assume the known and the unknown risks of a Mars journey I do not see the problem.

Those risks are surly far less then the crews of long range sailing ships had been willing to assume.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Jul, 2011 09:50 am
@BillRM,
This is typical of your historical ignorance. When George Anson lead an expedition against the Spanish in the Pacific in 1740, over the three years of the expedition, he lost between 800 and 900 men out of the slightly more than 2000 he started with. The Admiralty knew he was likely to lose a lot of men to scurvy, but no one knew how to prevent it. Just as soon as people were able to do so, dietary supplements to eliminate scurvy were introduced. It's not a matter of waiting, we know what must be done. To suggest that we should ignore health risks for which we know a solution is a cavalier attitude, and a stupid one.
 

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