View Full Version : Humans on the Moon

2004-Jan-11, 10:04 AM
Okay so now we're hearing lots of news about Bush announcing a permanent human presence on the moon. It is great news! no doubt! I want it to be real and I'm pretty sure that most of you want it too. It would be the thing we've all dreamed of. One step closer to the future we all think about when we think of the space programme.

That said ... I was just reading an article on one of the news websites about the announcement and why people thought it was needed as the next logical step in human evolution/expansion. As the days come closer I've been more and more anxious to hear/read the words that might allow us to go there again. But I just realised I don't think it's real ... I don't think it's going to happen. Not because of money, not because of political or government change. Nothing like that. I just didn't feel it. Now, it occured to me that if someone like me, who wants it so badly, doesn't think it's going to happen then what are those less enamoured with human space travel thinking and feeling? The thing is that no matter how much you say you're going to do something, if in the back of your mind you really think you aren't then it probably won't happen. Like going to the gym. Everyone says, I'll go to the gym and get really fit and stuff but for most it never happens. You might have every intention of going, telling the absolute truth when you say it. You might even actually join up and go ... once. But the reality is that you say it and right there and then without admitting it to yourself you know you ain't going. With regards to a permanent human presence on the moon, I really do believe it'll happen one day ... just not now. Even though I want it to!!

So does anyone else feel like this?? Tell me I'm wrong! I'll be more than happy to be wrong. Or tell me how to change it.

2004-Jan-11, 10:50 AM
Think positive Josh! :)

2004-Jan-11, 11:54 AM
It's not about positive thinking .. that's the whole point. It's about positive feeling. How does that bit happen?

2004-Jan-11, 06:09 PM
It will not happen unless we make it happen. I want to believe that it will happen and I will fight for it to happen. Write to your congressman, donate money to lobying organizations like the National Space Society. I am still in high school and can't do much, but I do what I can, because I want this to become a reality. The reason it doesn't feel real to us now is because that it hasn't been real for so long. I was born in 1985, and so I have never known a space program other than the space shuttle. I have never felt what my parents and grandparents felt when man landed on the moon. Therefore, I have this inbred sense that it cannot happen, because I have never known it to happen. Now, you're probably older than me, and you may be old enough to remember the moon landings, I don't know. So that may not be the case for you. But it is the case for many people. Nevertheless, that does not mean that it cannot happen. The only reason it won't happen is because people don't believe it will happen. I'm sick of LEO, I want to go somewhere new. I am starting college next year, and I will soon go out into the world, and I will be at an age where I will be able to at least live under the illusion that I can make a difference (lol), and so will many of my friends. If we fight for this, we can make it real. But it will not become real all by itself.

2004-Jan-12, 01:55 PM
I am still convinced that private organisations will eventually see the worth of having an off planet industrial base. But it will come also down to private individuals either financing or pushing for the permanent base to go ahead. It may not be a case of thinking positive but looking for the positives/advantages in such a venture.

2004-Jan-12, 05:45 PM
Houston, local ABC TV just reported "again" that George is going to announce a "permanent presence on the moon in preparation for future space exploration"

They also said that George is not going to make it a "Space Race" again...
...they said that he does not see us getting to the moon for another 10-15 years!

2004-Jan-12, 05:50 PM
They also said that he is going to phase out the Shuttle program by 2010!

2004-Jan-12, 05:51 PM
10-15 years from now is better than never at all. In fact, it's quite good for me, because as a high school senior, 10-15 years from now is the perfect time for me to be old enough to be involved :P

2004-Jan-12, 05:57 PM
lunatic, Did you get the postcard I sent you?

2004-Jan-12, 08:25 PM
lunatic has an interesting take on the subject of collective expectation. When my father was young, he was interested in aircraft, while his father thought they were just something for the government to waste tax dollars on (Gramps was not impressed with barnstormers or early Ford Tri-Motors that offered rides for $5 for 15 minutes, these were "just stunts"). My Dad's generation confidentely expected aviation to make steady improvments. During WWII, they told themselves that the postwar era would be remembered as "The Air Age" and they expected that "someday", flying would be as common as taking a train. When the Cold War spawned the space race, Dad and most of his generation saw it as a logical progression from aircraft to spacecraft and accepted that some of his tax money would be spent on it. To him, it was simply something that civilized people did in the name of progress. Even though he quit his job as a flight instructor in the early 1950's (said he was tired of teaching dilettantes), he still supported aviation by reading about it and using commercial flights when he had to travel. He also "allowed" me to cultivate an interest in flying and spacetravel. When the Apollo program ended, he regarded it as a "setback" but he'd seen setbacks before (like the Dole air race or the loss of Earhart or Post)and he expected us to get back on track before long. He was proud that Americans were the first people on the moon, and tickled that he'd lived long enough to see it with his own eyes. Since he passed away in 1980, he was spared the knowledge that he'd also lived long enough to see the last people land on the moon. Where ever he is now, he's probably fuming about how long we've let this "setback" stall us. I think our best hope is to "keep the ground fertile" for space exploration by contributing to sites like this, study about space exploration and continue to send notes to your congrassman that support space activities. If we keep the idea current in people's minds, then we are still in the game.

2004-Jan-13, 12:59 AM
They also said that he is going to phase out the Shuttle program by 2010!

That's no big deal, if something else replaces it. Maybe a moon shuttle? :D

A moon mission in 10-15 years would mean that it would invariably cost the US government less money to return to the moon. Does the US want to beat China to the Moon though? If they do 15 years from know puts us to 2019, 1 year before the Chinese hope to be on the Moon.

2004-Jan-13, 01:03 AM
and what about the europeans and japanese - it'll only be a matter of time until they are ready and make their attempts to the moon and beyond.

2004-Jan-13, 01:06 AM
i hope that china will not accept this and go faster to moon :lol:
then the moon race start again

2004-Jan-13, 01:10 AM
I certainly think it'll happen eventually. I think the fact that Bush is saying 10-15 years which is way passed any sort of real influence he has on it shows that it's just talk. I think phasing out the shuttle completely is a bad idea and instead the shuttle should be converted to a totally space based vehicle (as per this (http://www.universetoday.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=675&st=0) thread)

So are you all saying that you really feel that it's going to happen?

2004-Jan-13, 01:55 AM
I am saying I am going to fight for it. I found a page with all the addresses of my home state representitives, now I just have to write a letter eloquent enough to merit sending to them :unsure:

Okay okay quick Colorado inside joke:

Dear Senator Allard,

What Kind of Man would NOT support the space initiative?

*laughs hysterically and wonders why everyone's looking at me funny* :blink:

Mark, thanks for the postcard -- cute dog, tehee :P I went to your web page, it's pretty cool! Although I don't do much online shopping, if I ever need anything I'll know where to go. I'm glad you liked my page, it hasn't been updated in ages lol

2004-Jan-13, 02:00 AM
Well Josh it has to happen sometime, we will eventually go back to the Moon, If it will be within the next 15 years is really up to America.

2004-Jan-13, 04:08 AM
If they cooperate, meaning the Americans, Russians, Chinese, Japanese and the Europeans then maybe we might be able to get their quicker, although I have major doubts about that ever occurring.

2004-Jan-13, 06:53 PM
Space.com has a long story on this...

http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/moon...e_040113-1.html (http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/moonbase_science_040113-1.html)

2004-Jan-14, 02:43 AM
What ezactly does the moon offer? Is the moon worth such investment. Aboost towards further galaxies? Is water the main resource? I&#39;m a little skeptical. <_<

2004-Jan-14, 02:55 AM
The goal is not the Moon.

The goal is "Human Space Exploration"

The Moon is the logical next step&#33;

2004-Jan-14, 11:17 PM
Well Bush has made the announcement, back to Luna by somewhere between 2015-20, Shuttle to be flown until 2010 and the ISS is finished thus satisfying U.S.&#39;s obligations to it&#39;s international partners. Robot probes to the Moon to resume by 2008, incl MER-type rovers apparently. A very general and non-specific call for international cooperation on the Moon project. New CEV (Crew Exploration Vehicle) to be developed and first flown by 2008 (first crewed mission to be by 2014) that can supply crew to ISS and be crew transport mooncraft. It&#39;s clearly the OSP by another name and will certainly be some form of capsule probably based on Apollo CM. What about a lander though?

All good stuff as far as it goes but the wide margin of 2015-20 for returning to the Moon is a worry--giving a mob like NASA such a wide target ensures they&#39;ll take until at least 2020, they need a sharp implement in a sensitive place, a definite and non-negotiable date to get them moving and out of their stupor. The pollies will also then have plenty of scope to kill the project off slowly over time without a more concrete date, that&#39;s very bad.

The ISS partners should all get together ASAP and decide to terminate the ISS project ASAP and join up to go to the Moon and build a base there instead (much of the h/w and development money they&#39;ve spent on ISS modules, lifesupport systems, etc. should be useable for Moon bases.) The Shuttle should be retired before 2010 if possible, 2008 woud be good. The sooner the deadweight of ISS and Shuttle can be lifted from everyone&#39;s shoulders the sooner we can get back to the Moon and the less money will be wasted on dead-end stuff like ISS.

Anyway Bush has appointed a review panel to look at NASA and how to best achieve the goals he&#39;s outlined. Hopefully private sector developed launch vehicles and so forth will get a look in here and more details on h/w requirements, etc. (I feel the old Earth Orbit Rendevous/Lunar Orbit Rendevous argument firing up again already&#33;) can be thrashed out.

2004-Jan-15, 12:33 AM
dshan - You have an eloquent and convincing argument for continued Space Exploration ... but funding is the problem for the American Government. There are more urgent priorities for them. Apart from domestic needs (Health and all that) what about the threat of terrorist nations? These are real and immediate problems facing us all.

2004-Jan-15, 01:28 AM
I believe that NASA does need a firm date as stated by others.

Without &#39;competition&#39; of another power getting there first etc. the political powers to be in the U.S. may not have the heart to spend up big to realise this dream. The main driving force of the politicians during the Apollo missions was the old Communist V Capitalist argument. At present, we, meaning the world, don&#39;t have this political posturing happening.

I am also becoming more cynical of politicians. I believed John Howard (I&#39;m an Aussie) over WMD and Iraq and therefore the American political machine as well, I was mislead. This is an election year for America and this announcement already smells of a political stunt to garner votes.

For these reasons I believe that this project will not succeed in the present political climate.

I hope I am wrong and promise to admit it if I am. But in 20 years time I will probably have forgotten making this statement. Will someone remind me?

2004-Jan-15, 01:38 AM
A big stepping stone, I see. Sounds like a good idea if the budget calls. Or I mean, answers. Abig step. I am excited for back-up on this unquestionable leap. Cheers. :)

2004-Jan-15, 08:18 AM
I&#39;m here in Texas. I think it&#39;s mostly about votes. That said--------We need to keep our space program growing. We need more advancements in propulsion ;plasma, E.M.,fussion,even time; if someone could. We need better material for our spacecrafts. I can&#39;t understand why, when something goes awry, NASA replaces it with the same thechnology that they used 30 years ago. Aren&#39;t they using the same ceramic tiles (manufacturing) ? Fraser has posted several stories about cracks in the fuel lines and outer hull, etc. When is NASA going to use all the good things that have come out of their own programs?

2004-Jan-15, 08:46 AM
I&#39;ve seen very little mention anywhere about Helium-3. From what I&#39;ve read Helium-3 could be worth up to &#036;3 million/kg.

By the way, I&#39;ve just launched a website @ MoonToMars.com (http://www.moontomars.com) that is dedicated to the new Moon and Mars missions.


2004-Jan-15, 02:18 PM
nice site moontomars&#33; i know that 1 time a retourflight of shuttle with load of heluim 3 could spare us 800 miljard &#036; american electricy&#33;

this is the best profitable possibly then another minerals and just researchs.
lets mine&#33;

2004-Jan-15, 07:34 PM
Originally posted by MoonToMars@Jan 15 2004, 08:46 AM
I&#39;ve seen very little mention anywhere about Helium-3. From what I&#39;ve read Helium-3 could be worth up to &#036;3 million/kg.

By the way, I&#39;ve just launched a website @ MoonToMars.com (http://www.moontomars.com) that is dedicated to the new Moon and Mars missions.

You first have to develop a working fusion reactor to use your helium 3. Currently they claim it is going to take another thirty years to develop such a reactor. But thirty years ago they also said it was going to take thirty years. And the fusion program is also very expensive, so if they spend so much money on space exploration, they will have a very difficult time finding money for the research of fusion energy.

2004-Jan-15, 09:54 PM
30 years seems like the common catch cry of people with absolutely no idea ... problem is, that&#39;s the number of years announced until humans go to mars.

2004-Jan-16, 12:28 AM
<_< Mine, really? That sounds a bit costly to me, just for the research itself. To bore here in local grime is costly. Imagine the lowering dollar investing in material (if any) unknown. Pretty risky. :ph34r:

2004-Jan-16, 01:29 AM
I readed elsewhere that fusion power building designed for such as heluim 3 fuel already builded, so it&#39;s not really problem.

I didnt mean &#39;mine&#39;is really mine as we do it at the earth. i readed that heluim 3 easily lay on the moonground&#33; Maybe just digging with a shovel is enough to take a sample of heluim 3.

better do mine so you make profit and free power than only walking around and doing research in the &#39;researchbase&#39;

2004-Jan-16, 05:36 AM
30 years???? it used to be that 20-25 years was concidered a "generation". With the life expectancy over 80 now, I guess that "30 years" is code for: "when your kids can do it". :P

Dave Mitsky
2004-Jan-16, 08:06 AM
A former NASA historian appeared on CNN on Wednesday evening. His take on the Bush plan was that it was simply an effort to bail out the obscenely expensive ISS. This makes sense to me since the funds being allocated are not nearly enough to reach the Moon. Building a lunar base would cost tens of billions, perhaps hundreds of billions, more.

Of course, if there&#39;s no usable water at the lunar poles, a lunar colony is dead in the water so to speak.

Dave Mitsky

2004-Jan-16, 10:25 AM
Originally posted by Dave Mitsky@Jan 16 2004, 08:06 AM
A former NASA historian appeared on CNN on Wednesday evening. His take on the Bush plan was that it was simply an effort to bail out the obscenely expensive ISS. This makes sense to me since the funds being allocated are not nearly enough to reach the Moon. Building a lunar base would cost tens of billions, perhaps hundreds of billions, more.

Of course, if there&#39;s no usable water at the lunar poles, a lunar colony is dead in the water so to speak.

Dave Mitsky
The best hope is that in the light of GB II plan for the Moon and beyond NASA can persuade ESA and Japan, Russia, etc. to give up on completing the ISS and join it in going back to the Moon and Mars asap. Get rid of the shuttle and ISS earlier than 2010 and concentrate all resources on robotic and manned missions to the Moon, Mars and beyond. Scuttling the shuttle and ISS would free up lots of money for the new program and the sooner this is available the better.

Water at the lunar poles would certainly simplify the establishment of a base there but it&#39;s not essential. Apollo and Surveyor found oxygen-bearing minerals in the lunar soil that with the addition of sunlight and hydrogen from Earth (initially, later from ET sources) and good water recycling and recovery systems make lunar bases viable even without ice on the Moon. Even if there is ice on the Moon there may not be enough to make permanent bases there viable long term. Icy asteroids and comets are eventually going to have to be mined to supply large bases on the Moon with water.

2004-Jan-16, 05:23 PM
Just got back from a trip to Washington D.C. there is in some sectors of govt the thought, regarding President Bush&#39;s announcment, "What is he thinking?" These opinions are held by pretty powerful individuals. It remains to be seen what will happen. I still hope a permanent Moon and or Mars base will happen, but I&#39;m not holding my breath past the next election.


2004-Jan-16, 07:25 PM
I wouldn&#39;t count on Europe or Japan to come up with large sums of money. In the first place there is no money. I think Europe and Japan will have to spend their money on other things. For example they have a population which is groing older fast. Their is allready doubt if we can give everyone a good pension. Second, for the moment in Europe not a lot of people even realise we have our own space agency. So politicians aren&#39;t very interested in the space program. And i think Esa is happy with that. So they will not start investing in a program wich will atract a lot of attention from politicians. And there are countries like the United Kingdom who event don&#39;t spend a buck on manned spaceflight, and i doubt if they will change their mind. And last, the guy who proposed this plan is called George Bush. In Europe there are not lot of people who like this guy.

Manchurian Taikonaut
2004-Jul-19, 05:18 PM
There are big problems now, so it is hard to know what the furture will bring. Saftey is looked at hard, and finances are weighing it down. NASA was fantastic when it put people on the moon, but can we build a city on the Moon now, it is hard to say

2004-Jul-20, 04:04 AM
I&#39;ll do it, hopefully with some contacts in Colorado. As one of them put it, they are in the unique position to lead a mission to the Moon, because "we are one mile closer to the goal than most everyone else". :D