More Comments for Dr. Spudis

We live at the bottom of gravity well that dictates design, analoguous to Feynman’s quote- “For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled.”

This means that no matter how many sci-fi movies portray SSTO and no matter how many NewSpace infomercials scream cheap, “there is no free lunch.” By the way, the other famous Heinlein quote about Earth orbit being “halfway to anywhere” was revised to “Low Earth Orbit” as a NewSpace marketing ploy – He never said LEO and may just as easily have meant GEO.
LEO is not really space and is a dead end.

To achieve escape velocity (not so much orbital velocity) hydrogen upper stages are almost a necessity. To go anywhere Beyond Earth and Lunar Orbit (BELO) with humans requires massive shielding and chemical propulsion will not work. Only nuclear energy can push such mass (until some kind of beam propulsion infrastructure exists). That said, the only practical form of nuclear propulsion is “pulse” or, to put it bluntly, bombs.

This means that inside the Earth’s magnetosphere only chemical propulsion is practical due to fallout eventually being sucked into the atmosphere. This works out fine because just outside the magnetosphere is the Moon and that is where we have to go for the water-as-radiation-shielding anyway.

To keep this as short as possible, only progressively more powerful iterations of a Super Heavy Lift Vehicle used in a state sponsored public works project to develop a cislunar infrastructure has any chance of success. NewSpace is a scam that ends in the dead end of LEO.

And that makes their flagship companies inferior lift launch vehicle a hobby rocket.

NewSpace has been doing one thing for years yet nobody ever talks about it: the Ayn-Rand-in-Space Musk groupies damn the space agency and cal for it to be done away with on one page and praise NASA for pouring several billion tax dollars into commercial cargo and commercial crew on another.

They have nothing bad to say about the over one hundred billion dollar space station to nowhere yet curse all government “porkonaut projects” not connected to SpaceX (like the SLS) as pure evil. If these two-faced deceivers were not so damaging to the future of space exploration their idiotic contradictions would be funny.

Three very easy to digest sources giving some understanding to the situation concerning space exploration. Also very indicative of the complete inadequacy of NewSpace efforts.


2. Infographic (on page 23 depicting the depths of the Earth and Lunar gravity wells.


Anybody with basic critical thinking skills can figure out how these examples apply to Human Space Flight Beyond Low Earth Orbit (HSF-BLEO). Unfortunately there are those so completely brainwashed by NewSpace infomercials they cannot process this basic data, so I will supply some hints:

1. Radiation? LEO is not really space; it has about as much in common with the space environment above LEO as a catfish pond does with the North Atlantic.

2. Water? The only place to get the shielding required for HSF-BLEO is the lunar poles.

3. Spaceships? Super Heavy Lift Vehicle iterations far more powerful than the evolved SLS are necessary for constructing a cislunar infrastructure. Saying anything otherwise is completely false and misleading.

The Apollo 1 fire made the aerospace industry take a step back from Human Space Flight and look to defense for profits. The 1972 Solar Flare would have killed or profoundly dosed an Apollo crew if they had been in transit to or from the Moon. Skylab’s main instrument was a solar telescope to try and predict solar events so as to allow missions Beyond Low Earth Orbit (BLEO) without having crews in constant danger. Space weather is still not predictable and probably never will be. All this points to hobby rockets and entrepreneurs as simply incapable of “opening the solar system up.”
It’s a scam.

NewSpace is essentially an Orwellian construct that will deliver exactly the opposite of what it promises. There is no cheap.

Published by billgamesh

Revivable Cryopreservation Advocate

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