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Back to the Moon in 2018?

Discussion in 'Serious' started by TekMonkey, 17 Sep 2005.

  1. TekMonkey

    TekMonkey I enjoy cheese.

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    http://msnbc.msn.com/id/9355479/


    Frankly, I'm wondering why we're heading back to the Moon at all? We went to the Moon several times in the 60's-70's. We've never had a reason to go back since then.

    I always thought we would be heading to Mars by 2018. :blah:
     
  2. Firehed

    Firehed Why not? I own a domain to match.

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    Well in theory if we put a refueling station on the moon (fat chance!) it would make deeper exploration easier because it would take less fuel to get back off the moon, as it's gravity is so much lower (1/6th of Earth's I believe). A bit pointless imo, but still cool.
     
  3. Techno-Dann

    Techno-Dann Disgruntled kumquat

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    The moon is actually a great launching-point for a Mars shot. Like Firehed said, it's got way less gravity than earth. Also, lunar soil has lots of aluminum and oxygen. Pure aluminum and oxygen is an excelent rocket fuel. The Space Shuttle's solid rocket boosters are aluminum burning. It's not as efficient as burning hydrogen, but it still produces a lot of energy.
     
  4. TekMonkey

    TekMonkey I enjoy cheese.

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    Wouldn't an orbiting space station be an even better refueling station then?
     
  5. Piratetaco

    Piratetaco is always right

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    wouldn't it be easier to get the fuel to the station if its on the moon with all the fuel ?
     
  6. Murdoc

    Murdoc Gas Mask..ZOMG

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    So the first man lands on the moon in 2018, cool.

    'doc
     
    Last edited: 17 Sep 2005
  7. Idioteque

    Idioteque Telephasic Mongoose

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    It would be a good idea to put a refuelling station on the moon... but otherwise I see no benefits to landing on the moon just to check out the view.

    and I was expecting there to be the start of colonisation in about 2015 when I was 6...
     
  8. Jaxx

    Jaxx What's a Dremel?

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    It's to give the people who don't believe in the landings of the 60's & 70's a second chance :D
     
  9. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    I can hear them now going in 2018: "OMG it's Photoshopped!!!" With CGI being what it is now, in 2018 it will be pretty much indistinguishable from reality. The sceptics will just argue it was all whipped up at ILM. :rolleyes:
     
  10. JinkzUK

    JinkzUK What's a Dremel?

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    We all know that the moons lunar soil is made of cheese though.. silly!
     
  11. DivineSin

    DivineSin What's a Dremel?

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    I dont understand one thing about this, there is reasons to go to the moon, but the timeline just seems totally wrong for me. 2018? why would it take so long for us to launch off and land on the moon when it only took us 9 years in the 60's?

    It is now 2005, that means it would take thirteen years for us to plan, build and land on the moon, four years longer than it did us in the 60's. Are we not that more advanced than we were 50 years ago? Personally i think this looks like proof that we never landed on the moon in the first place.
     
  12. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    Oh, here we go...

    You cannot compare the circumstances around the moonshot in the 60's with the current scientific and political situation. Standards have shifted quite a bit. In the 60's, the objective basically was mainly a political one: to win the space race. The science was largely window dressing --nothing that couldn't have been done (or hadn't been done) with space probes. Moreover, in those days the "Right Stuff" was prepared to be strapped into a metal can bolted on top of a huge-ass roman candle and to rather naively be shot into space without a real understanding of what was out there in terms of radiation and what it does to your body, micro-meteorites and longer term exposure to zero-G. It was a miracle that things went right so many times (although the first launch, if you will remember, ended in tragedy on the launch pad, and then there was Apollo 13. Definitely not scenarios they would have wanted to fake just to impress the Soviets and the American public, don't you think?).

    Now, things are different. We are not (quite as) prepared to simply shoot people up into space and casually expose them to mortal danger. We are more aware of threats and complications. Spaceships have to be built to a safer, more exacting standard. They have to have more failsafes, protection measures and a stronger construction.

    Furthermore, once they land on the moon, the astronaut will actually be expected to hang around for a while and do some science. In the 60's it was just gee-whiz that people stepped on the moon but we are used to that idea by now, and a scientifically more informed public (or at least a more jaded one) wants some really good reasons as to why NASA should blow billions away putting people on the moon. It has to see something for the money and effort. Particularly if this is a prelude to a serious attempt at colonisation to set up a base for the Mars missions, they have to do a lot more than just plant a flag, ride around in a golf cart and collect some rocks. So the whole proposition is much more complex, see?
     
    Last edited: 19 Sep 2005
  13. cpemma

    cpemma Ecky thump

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    Unfortunately, Mars is a really lousy launching-point for an Earth shot. Although the gravity is only around 1/3 Earth's, that's still a massive payload in fuel to land with.

    And no ground support. :worried:
     
  14. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    ...not to mention that at its closest distance to Earth, it takes 3.8 minutes to just receive a signal from Mars going: "Errr... Houston, we got a problem...". At average distance it's about 12.5 minutes... :worried:
     
  15. cpemma

    cpemma Ecky thump

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    ...and don't forget the food aspect, with a round trip of over 400 days that's a lot of cornflakes.
    (from here.)

    On the positive side, by 2018 an iPod yocto will hold all the music ever recorded, so they won't be too bored on the long journey.
     
  16. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    ...and I thought they could order out for Pizza, as the commercial suggests ("Who's in the Hut?"). :D
     
  17. :: Phat ::

    :: Phat :: Oooh shakalaka!

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    I think NASA might be looking ahead, this announcement now is going to be a MASSIVE imaje boost for NASA, wether you believed in it or not, the 60's Moon Landings we're a HUGE event. This will now bring this Event to the next generation of people to get them interested in NASA all over again.

    I saw a program on the space race a few weeks ago that I'd seen before, you had to laugh at the bit about the Russian fail safe system for opening a hatch. If the craft got into trouble, you had something like 12 seconds to get through the hatch. Scientists found it took at least 38 seconds or something similar to acctually open the hatch :D
     
  18. fathom17

    fathom17 What's a Dremel?

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    exactly, i saw it on moon.google.com (something like that)

    ::phat::, are you watching the Space Race drama thing on BBC2 at the mo, that started last week?
     
  19. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    Still better than the Apollo 1. The Apollo hatch could only open inward and was held closed by a number of latches which had to be operated by ratchets. It was also held closed by the interior pressure, which was higher than outside atmospheric pressure and required venting of the command module before the hatch could be opened. It took at least 90 seconds to get the hatch open under ideal conditions. Needless to say when fire broke out in the capsule during launch testing, all three astronauts burned to a crisp.
     
  20. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

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    I suspect that they will launch an unmanned craft a head of time that will contain the necessary supplies for the return trip. Once the manned craft arrives, they can replace the empty supply module with the stocked one.

    Not sure about the fuel though. I guess by 2018 we will have developed an alternative way to fuel the rocket, or will have built a something that is durable enough to hold fuel for the return. It could be pre-launched and swapped out like the other supplies.

    But it's all moot because we're not really landing on Mars at all. Didn't you know it's all done on a soundstage in Area 51?!

    -monkey
     

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