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World & Current Events > Spacex launch: Excited? Nervous? Optimistic or not for future of space travel?

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message 1: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments I'm pretty excited to see manned space travel in the U.S. again. I'm also a little nervous, even though there's an option for the astronauts to separate if things go wrong. And so many things can go wrong. Do you think, if the mission is successful, this is the beginning of a new era of space exploration and investment opportunities?


message 2: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) Excited - I'm moon shot age so any person blasting off to space is still awe inspiring


message 3: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 13495 comments Excited and hopeful it goes smoothly and opens a new era of space exploration. Also hope they'll offer good tickets' discounts a decade from now :)


message 4: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments Before I had a child, I thought that if an alien ship landed and some friendly-seeming extraterrestrials asked me to go for a ride, I'd probably do it. That was when I was a trusting soul with no responsibilities and up for adventure. So, Nik, you'd go in ten years if you can afford it. Anyone else up for space travel?


message 5: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) Yes please and sorry to see delay - hope for Saturday now - was on edge of my seat watching from T-30mins


message 6: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan When I was a child/teenager I wanted to explore other planets.

Sci-fi was my first love.


message 7: by J. (new)

J. Gowin | 2903 comments I've been watching the news coverage. Whenever they show the vehicle assembly building, I feel sad. The space shuttles, SpaceX's current vehicle, and every other spacecraft that NASA has used in my lifetime look small in that hangar. This is because the vehicle assembly building was constructed to service the Saturn V which dwarfs everything since.


message 8: by Leonie (new)

Leonie (leonierogers) | 1579 comments I wanted to be an astronaut when I was a child. Maybe in my sixties....🤷‍♀️


message 9: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan Leonie wrote: "I wanted to be an astronaut when I was a child. Maybe in my sixties....🤷‍♀️"

Yay! Me too. When I read your story, I really related to being on a 'colony.'


message 10: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 13495 comments Scout wrote: "So, Nik, you'd go in ten years if you can afford it...."

With some trepidation I imagine, but yes, that's a dream come true - to see this blue ball out of the window while floating weightlessly inside the ship.
Don't remember Branson or Musk estimated they'd sell space tourism tix for 200K. Hope after it becomes more routine, they'll erase the last zero on the price tag.


message 11: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments When I was young I too imagined myself going into space, but it will not be. However, I also think that until we can get better motors, space excursions will be extremely expensive. Chemical rockets simply do not have the power density to do the necessary "heavy lifting". Sure, you could do some fabrication in space, but you still have to lift out of some gravitational field. Even if you start in space to go to Mars, you have to lift through 0.5 A.U. of the stellar gravity. Look at the cost of taking something like a tonne of mass to Mars. When I wrote my novel on Martian settlement, I added up what I thought had to be taken and decided the mass would come to 20 Mt, and you can't do that with chemical rockets.


message 12: by Graeme (last edited May 29, 2020 03:57PM) (new)

Graeme Rodaughan "Starship SN4 exploded on the launch pad shortly after completing a static fire test in Boca Chica, Texas. The cause of the anomaly is not currently known. Due to a large safety radius, nobody was hurt during the incident."

Not a good look...

"I need a better rocket." - Elon Musk (...perhaps...)

P.s. Sooner or later they'll get this working.

REF: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RPyD...


message 13: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments Sooner or later? Would you be nervous sitting on top of this the first time it carries people?


message 14: by J. (new)

J. Gowin | 2903 comments NASA has only lost one crew due to a rocket failure. That was the crew of STS-51-L aboard the space shuttle Challenger. This was the 25th space shuttle mission, and the ninth mission for Challenger.


message 15: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan Ian wrote: "Sooner or later? Would you be nervous sitting on top of this the first time it carries people?"

Absolutely.


message 16: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments I'm so happy that things went well and the guys are on the space station. I watched an interview with one of them before the launch, and he seemed very nervous. Probably thinking, as I was, about the previous failures of SpaceX. But they're there and safe, so good deal. Maybe the first step to greater things.


message 17: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments It is great that they are safe and it is good that the US at last has a means of getting there. The Russians were helpful, but the US really can't depend on them.


message 18: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) Fantastic achievement for SpaceX and NASA. They still have to return safely in a few months as do Soyuz crew but a significant steeping stone.


message 19: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments I wonder how many docking ports there are at the International Space Station. If some more nations join in, could there be trouble finding a parking spot??


message 20: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) Ian wrote: "I wonder how many docking ports there are at the International Space Station. If some more nations join in, could there be trouble finding a parking spot??"

They'll need a tow away zone soon...


message 21: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2145 comments And eventually you'll have the predatory towing companies watching like a vulture, waiting for someone to dock. And as soon as they go inside, they'll swoop in and tow away the capsule before you come back...and the only way to get it back is to pay their extortion...er...I mean fee because it will take the Space Force a week to sort out the situation, and you'll have to pay court costs when you're stuck suing to get your money back...


message 22: by Gary (new)

Gary Allen, PhD (gallen6) Double parking is not a problem. There is plenty of room.


message 23: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments Yes, but you get in through the docking port. Walking around to another entry might work, except you are a little short of ground. There is also the problem of air pressure in the airlock. If everyone is in the station, the airlocks will be pressurised and the door won't open.


message 24: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 13495 comments Yeah, I can foresee already a naval (space) boarding of the station happening in a few years


message 25: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments What if we want to leave astronauts up there? Looks like there's only room for 2 on the SpaceX capsule. We'll have to train two other guys and depend on Russia to get them up there so teams can switch out.


message 26: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments Send up another capsule, and bring the two back down, leaving 2 up there and one capsule. After it is done once, it is self-perpetuating.


message 27: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments That's a good solution. I wonder if they have another capsule ready. And if they'll be ticketed for overtime parking :-) Have you found out how many docking ports there are?


message 28: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan J.J. wrote: "And eventually you'll have the predatory towing companies watching like a vulture, waiting for someone to dock. And as soon as they go inside, they'll swoop in and tow away the capsule before you c..."

They'll impound it. Probably knock out a rear brake light just to make it 'unspaceworthy,' just so you have to pay extra to get it re-commissioned for use.


message 29: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments Scout wrote: "That's a good solution. I wonder if they have another capsule ready. And if they'll be ticketed for overtime parking :-) Have you found out how many docking ports there are?"

Not such a problem after all. After checking with NASA it has six docking ports.


message 30: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments Good deal. I still wonder if they have another capsule ready to send up. People here don't seem to like Elon much, but I think he's a genius with a vision and the means and determination to see it through. What's bad about that?


message 31: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments Nothing, if that is all there is to it. However, he seems to be remarkably rich for the profits he makes.


message 32: by Lizzie (new)

Lizzie | 1622 comments I watched man land on the moon the day before my 10th birthday and told my daddy I wanted to be an astronaut. He said I could be anything I wanted.

I wrote my high school science fiction English class paper on the phenomena of Star Trek (that was 1977). My teacher wrote across the top that when they come she hopes they are like Spock and that I am there to meet them.

Now that I am 60, I don't have any desire to go into space in a cramped capsule. So, unless we jump forward quickly or aliens with a huge ship appear, I won't be on a space ride.


message 33: by Lizzie (new)

Lizzie | 1622 comments One of Musk's other endeavors is neurolink. Would you allow an implants in your brain in order to integrate with an AI?


message 34: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 13495 comments The story is maybe only loosely connected (and I can't vouch for its authenticity), but hopefully others will enjoy it too: https://www.actionnetwork.com/general...
And what a play of luck: to win a rare bet and to die in a car crash a year after


message 35: by Lizzie (new)

Lizzie | 1622 comments I think it's true, basically. There are other articles on it with this guy mentioned, including a 2019 Time magazine article, " David Threlfall, 26, waited in London to collect his bounty from the bookmaking firm of William Hill Ltd.; he bet $24 in 1964 that men would land on the moon by 1971, and got 1,000-to-l odds."
https://time.com/5629566/1969-moon-la...

A Las Vegas Review-Journal article from 2019, stated,
"By the end of 1964, the odds had dropped to 100-1 on the Soviet Union becoming the first country to land a man on the moon and to 150-1 on the U.S. doing so. By 1966, as more space missions succeeded, odds on reaching the moon dipped to single digits."

For those who may wonder, he took a cruise and he bought a Jaguar. He did share some of the money with his family. I hope he had fun during that year, as they all agree he died in a car accident within a year of winning.


message 36: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments I'm curious about your "remarkably rich for the profits he makes" comment, Ian.

And I don't know anything about his AI endeavors, Lizzie. I'd like to know more. Is this why people don't like him?


message 37: by Lizzie (new)

Lizzie | 1622 comments Scout wrote: "And I don't know anything about his AI endeavors, Lizzie. I'd like to know more. Is this why people don't like him?"

Here is a current article. A search of Musk neurolink will bring up a bunch of information and articles. He founded it in the summer of 2016.

https://www.cnet.com/news/elon-musk-n...


message 38: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments Scout, Musk's wealth is mainly on potential. There have been huge investments in getting to where he is, and at least a few years ago even the Tesla cars were not making a profit, although I believe they are now. The wealth, not unnaturally, comes from the stock valuations, but I feel personally a lot of that is for future promise. In fairness, electric cars will probably be seen as highly desirable in the carbon-emission-free future, even if they do not really make for greater environmental friendliness.


message 39: by Lizzie (last edited Jun 16, 2020 11:34PM) (new)

Lizzie | 1622 comments Scout wrote: "I'm curious about your "remarkably rich for the profits he makes" comment, Ian.

And I don't know anything about his AI endeavors, Lizzie. I'd like to know more. Is this why people don't like him?"


Scout,

Do you like the Iron Man/Tony Stark character? He is actually one of my favorite. But, he is a jerk, focused on himself, absentmindedly critical and ignorant of others and their feelings, and quite adept at putting that drive into doing something others can not yet imagine. He is also "filthy rich".

Musk is self-made. He is very smart and very lucky is my guess. He sold his first company, Zip2, to Compaq for $307 million in cash and $34 million in stock options in 1999. He developed and sold PayPal to eBay for $1.5 billion in 2002. Those kinds of sale prices make others envious and that was all in a 3-year period. Aside from Tesla and SpaceX, he co-founded Hyperloop One, which aims to develop high-speed train travel, and The Boring Company which is testing cheaper ways to dig tunnels. I am not sure what all he does, but he is 31st on Forbes richest people in the world list and at age 48 currently worth just shy of $40 billion.

His plans for Tesla were interesting and upset NADA, who was successful in preventing him from selling directly to consumers in Texas. He wanted to include the price of the infrastructure in the cars with the future being that you could simply stop and charge up without more fees. NADA makes a good portion of their money off of extended warranties and repairs. He didn't think people should have to pay for that.

To accomplish what he wants to within our society in regards to the environment and clean energy, from electric cars, mass transit, homes, reuseable rockets to establishing a colony on Mars, will require we as a society change and accept social responsibility for the environment. That results in pushback from everyone - lobbyists, governments, special interest groups, and many companies that are established on the current systems. (I admit, I am not willing to give up being able to step on the engine and drive 125 mph across the canyons and open plains.)

He is what I would call a visionary. He is also caustic and rubs people, groups, and media the wrong way. I haven't decided if his attitude is arrogance or confidence. I suspect it is actually the latter as I don't think arrogance alone would have resulted in that SpaceX launch. In early 2019 it was reported that a 2018 survey reflected that 80% of Tesla and SpaceX employees (over 1,600 people) were confident in Musk's leadership. I don't know if that was before or after the SEC ruled his tweets were misleading.

So why do people hate him - all of the above. And, we find it easy to make fun of him and to be skeptical of his ideas from stopping global warming to walking on Mars.

In regards to my first question, Robert Downey, Jr. shadowed Musk to prepare for the Tony Stark character.


message 40: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) Lizzie wrote: "Scout wrote: "I'm curious about your "remarkably rich for the profits he makes" comment, Ian.

And I don't know anything about his AI endeavors, Lizzie. I'd like to know more. Is this why people do..."


Well summed up - thank you. I salute his efforts with new tech from Tesla to SpaceX. Hyper Loop has not received as much attention but it's equally interesting


message 41: by Nik (last edited Jun 17, 2020 01:22AM) (new)

Nik Krasno | 13495 comments Maybe not less importantly, Musk wasn't shy to sue Air Force and put SpaceX into a competing position for procurement vs a jv of Boeing and Lockheed and as far as I see keeps challenging them. https://spacenews.com/spacex-launches... Apart from his personal goals, I guess the general public would only benefit from competition in military procurement.
On a more humorous end, I guess the political reality necessitates donating to both Rep & Dem: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/elon-m...
Agree with Ian that some/much/part (?) of his wealth relies on potential more than actual biz achievements. But that's the world today: Facebook, for example, was valuated at Billions even before it made a penny..


message 42: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments It is true potential is worth a lot. Amazon went for many years not making a significant profit, and n ow look at it,. and Jeff's wealth.


message 43: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments Ian, I thought about Facebook when you said that Musk's wealth is based on potential. I don't really see anything wrong with that.

Thanks, Lizzie, for the article. It seems that the main complaint against Musk is his arrogance and bad people skills. I wonder if he's on the autism spectrum, which would be an explanation. As far as merging AI and human brains, paraplegics would probably be all for it, if it works. I posted a while back about the rat experiments. The thing is that the technology doesn't just allow a brain to control external objects but it also allows for the technology to send signals to the brain. That's what I worry about. I certainly wouldn't voluntarily get the implants unless I had a terrible condition that could be alleviated. When I see technology like this, I always think about Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. It wasn't so much about the monster as the unexpected outcomes of using science to meddle with nature. Scary stuff.


message 44: by Lizzie (new)

Lizzie | 1622 comments Scout wrote: "Ian, I thought about Facebook when you said that Musk's wealth is based on potential. I don't really see anything wrong with that.

Thanks, Lizzie, for the article. It seems that the main complaint..."


New meaning to the use of firewalls. I suspect if we ever were to reach the level of having AI, they would eventually create their own and speed of computation would result in it being some sort of ongoing event that would be necessary to prevent outside hacking of the hardware and software running the organic body.


message 45: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments With all the hackers out there spending all their time trying to disrupt things, does it worry you that they could bypass those firewalls?


message 46: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments And I saw a live feed today of our two guys in the Space Station. They were saying that there's a lesson to be learned from their situation about international cooperation. Also, it looked like they were having a great time!


message 47: by Lizzie (new)

Lizzie | 1622 comments I suspect we could have one unified, happy Earth and there would still be greedy people.


message 48: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) ISS is a wonderful example of human cooperation in action.


message 49: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9514 comments Yes, when up there you work for everyone there or you risk all dying. Unfortunately they haven't worked out a way to export the cooperation down here.


message 50: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5349 comments Wouldn't that be a fine thing? Seeing those guys on the Space Station gave me a happy moment, even surrounded by all the gloom and doom down below


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