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  Messages 63-62 deleted by author 06-24-2006 05:19 PM
Oren Beck
07:04 PM ET (US)
What ever became of the "Big Dumb Booster" proposals?
08:08 AM ET (US)
I wish Google Mars would have taken the ESA shots instead of Nasa's as they're in color at least and seem better quality.
08:02 AM ET (US)
I like the GAIA project for Microlensing: (If we're going to go out there it would help to know where). I also really like the mapping ESA did with Mars.

I am interested in The Spaceeward foundation for more independant type projects:

They are doing the elevator 2010 project:

Remote robotic assemnbly:

Obviously nano or any tech isn't totally perfect. Some people are selling it for more then it's worth; but the space elevator seems OK so far... Entropy makes sense.
I think inventing ant-gravity is important for most of this and extreme health break-throughs. Any of this type of extreme activity is going to require more rugged humans.
S.M. Stirling
03:59 AM ET (US)
The Bristol Spaceplane designs look promising... have they ever been studied seriously?
Jonathan Vos Post
11:24 PM ET (US)
Of course a refueled-in-orbit Space Shuttle can get to Lunar Orbit. That was described in an Analog article. It was then pitched to Rockwell Space Division management by a plagiarist claiming the idea as his own. Rockwell demurred, just as they did when VP Dan Quayle asked if they had anything on the drawing board like "beam me up on Star Trek." I pushed them to do an "unsolicited" white paper on teleportation, and get some quick bucks, but management was afraid the story would get out, as their "engine that never needed to be refueled" had done when pitched to Idaho National Energy Labs.

Rockwell hoped to make the big time with the cargo-only Shuttle-C I worked on that proposal), and various Manned Orbiting Vehicles and the like. They had an entire Lunar-Planetary program (to which I was assigned half-time) which dead-ended when another proven plagiarist drove out all the MIT and Caltech graduates who kept pointing out his errors (such as cubical inflatable Moonbase buildings).

The true absurdity of how the US Space program shot its feet out from under itself is too tragicomic for this blog, and I hope to novelize it someday...
Charlie StrossPerson was signed in when posted
11:14 AM ET (US)
The last time NASA scheduled a gap in manned spaceflight -- from Apollo/Soyuz to Shuttle -- it ran over by, oh, about five years. Just one whoopsie late in the shuttle program (after, say, 2007) and I can see them cancelling the whole thing and going straight to CEV. Which will, of course, be late.

CEV is planned to do Apollo-type stuff and act as an orbital crew taxi, which is what the Shuttle ended up doing (despite being specced for a whole lot of much more ambitious stuff). So muttering about a shuttle to the moon isn't necessarily totally daft, if CEV == shuttle ... except that CEV isn't designed to deliver and retrieve KH-11s from polar orbit. Sigh.

I wish ESA would just bite the bullet and upgrade ATV to full man-rated status -- all it needs is a re-entry capsule and an escape tower and it'll be the second coming of the GE Apollo design, and it's already due to launch within the next 12 months.
Dave Bell
08:42 AM ET (US)
The ignorance on the part of whoever wrote the original article is astonishing.

Aiming to test just the first stage of the launch vehicle in 2012, with dummy upper stage and CEV is hardly a landmark. And the though that Shuttles could go to the moon?

How do you count-down in Chinese?
Dave Bell
08:37 AM ET (US)
The current hesitations in Shuttle operations are, as with the post-Challenger interruption, apparently temporary. The gap between Shuttle and CEV looks deliberate. And it's far enough ahead that people can plan for it.

There's all sorts of reasons why not to expect a Chinese Apollo program, and a good deal of the original which was slowed by the newness of the tech and the environment--no capsule fire forcing a redesign.

But the history says that 8 years is enough time to do something big in manned spaceflight.
06:12 PM ET (US)
Betcha the CEV is overdue, over budget, and doesn't perform to spec.

And we'll lose another shuttle.
12:03 PM ET (US)
Also, there seems to be an explosion of implementations happening.

We have three areas: Electronics (fast chips), material (space elevator, space ship hulls), and health.

This could be the greatest invention ever.
Carbon is a very root pure substance as a basic building-block to all life. If you burn anything allot of it turns into carbon. It combines strongly but is easily broken apart.
Diamonds have similar, very structured, carbon like properties so are the strongest (most valuable) substances known to man. The Carbon Nanotube process probably is stronger and able to be created on the fly as well as manipulated. Having control at this root level provides a large chance to construct just about anything hence infinite commercial apps.

Building Blocks:

Interesting older article about the “Diamond Age.”:
Extremely fast circuits and computer chips being created/invented

This is known as an NED computer screen where it will consume low power, 50 watts, and will be very cheap, like 300 USDA, for an 80 inch screen maybe 50 for a 19 incher. plus flexible like the newer screens are like OrganicLED screens. It will also have the same picture quality as a tube monitor because it uses light on phosphorus as well. Funny that basic life is made of phosphorus and carbon.

Kill yer cancer (safely):

Yes to build large ships in space we need this type of material in their hulls. No more flying foam problem.
Edited 08-25-2005 12:10 PM
SerraphinPerson was signed in when posted
03:35 AM ET (US)
"I'm going into orit, I'm going into orbit!" (in sing song voice.

Killer app for sure! Something we need to make all our sfnal dreams begin, and has a good enough capitalist interest to make people pay for it!
12:55 PM ET (US)
Killer App!

I remember nanotubes in Popular Mechanics about 15 years ago but didn't know if they developed anything realistic st the time. So now it's workin and I'm still alive!
Jonathan Vos Post
10:29 AM ET (US)
Captain, is that transparent aluminum? No, Scotty...

Transparent carbon nanotube sheets created
DALLAS, Aug. 18 (UPI) -- A University of Texas at Dallas-led research team and an Australian colleague have produced strong, transparent carbon nanotube sheets.

The transparent carbon nanotube sheets are stronger than the same-weight steel sheets and have demonstrated applicability for organic light-emitting displays, low-noise electronic sensors, artificial muscles, conducting appliques and broad-band polarized light sources that can be switched in one ten-thousandths of a second....

    Related Headlines
Nanotubes may replace transistors (August 16, 2005) -- California scientists say they've found customized Y-shaped carbon nanotubes can compute more efficiently than conventional transistors.
Bruce Murphy
08:27 PM ET (US)
Well, on the subject of simple things, reimplantation of removed stripes of ovarian tissue post-cancer treatment *has* been reported as leading to successful pregnancy.
Jonathan Vos Post
02:02 PM ET (US)
Of course, doing something "simple" and expecting a good result leads to, for example, the fad of surgically transplanting ram testicle tissue into human testicles, to treat impotence. There was (many a year ago) a 250 Kilowatt pirate radio station broadcasting Howling Wolf and others into the southern USA from Mexico, sponsored by a doctor who did just that. His ads promised that men who went to Mexico for his operation would become: "The Ram what Am for any Lamb."

Doing something simple, but ahead of its time, is ure to be ignored by The Eastblishment, especially if one is politically suspect. For instance (skip this if you're Math challenged):

"I found reference to Rodrigues in Rotations, Quaternions, and Double Groups, S. L. Altman, Clarendon Press, 1986. Altman is an Oxford University crystallographer, who taught rotational theory for a decade before writing this book. On p. vii, '... rotation operators are often obtained as by-products of the angular momentum operators in quantum mechanics. Partly as a result of this approach, rotations are then parametrized by means of the familiar Euler angles, which suffer from three defects: they are not always unique, they are very cumbersome to determine in the finite rotation groups (point groups), and they do not provide a scheme for the multiplication of rotations. An entirely different approach to rotations is possible, which was introduced by Olinde Rodrigues in 1840 but which has never been used. The rotation operators in this approach are obtained by an entirely geometric method, which ... leads most naturally to the parametrization of rotations by parameters that coincide with quaternions. These parameters are unique, exceedingly easy to determine, and -- because they are quaternions -- they provide an algebra that permits the multiplication of rotations in a simple way. At the same time, and most importantly, these parameters determine unambiguously the phase factors that appear in the angular momentum representations for half-integral quantum numbers. [Quaternions discovered independently, and spinors in 1840!] This result leads to a rigorous formulation of the representations of the rotation group, either as projective representations or by means of double groups.'"

{in our world, Spinors were popularized by Roger Penrose a couple of decades ago.}

There is so little about Rodrigues in The Literature that many misconceptions are said about him. Elie Cartan (1869-1951), who is credited with discovering the spinor, invented a nonexistent collaborator for Rodrigues by the name "Olinde" (Rogridgues' middle name), a mistake repeated by Temple. Others misspelled his name as "Rodrigue" and "Rodrigues". Altman refers to the familiar "Euler parameters for rotation" as "the Euler-Rodrigues parameters".

Rodrigues became the patron and financial supporter of Count Louis Saint-Simon (1760-1825), founder of French Socialism. After the death of Saint-Simon, Rodrigues became head of The Socialist Party. So religious and ethnic discrimination, political discrimination, and the discrimination of Mainstream mathematicians contributed to the present obscurity of this creative man.
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