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View Full Version : You've Just Won 100 Billion Dollars!



Yukmay
2009-Feb-10, 08:40 PM
Let's say Uncle Sam just gave you a check for $100,000,000,000 to spend on one single space related project? What would you guys spend it on?

I'm not even sure myself...A new space station? A mars mission? GEO solar arrays? A nice exoplanet telescope? Or how about a down payment on a moon base?

redshifter
2009-Feb-10, 09:05 PM
A single project? A manned Mars mission, with the intent on using new technology developed for this mission to apply towards manned missions to the Jovian system.

For 100 bill, I'd think we could develop a new propulsion system that doesn't rely on rocket fuel for space travel. We need something more efficient and capable of higher velocities.

My second choice: An array of space-based telescopes.

Swift
2009-Feb-10, 09:11 PM
Yukmay, I think this is more appropriate in Sapce Exploration, so I've moved it there.

Zvezdichko
2009-Feb-10, 09:24 PM
Sapce exploration :) (kidding) :P

As for me, If I have this chance I'll fund a manned Lunar program.

(I don't say If I had this chance... Everything can happen :P)

Rhaedas
2009-Feb-10, 09:59 PM
Infrastructure. Some reliable method of getting to and from orbit. After that, space becomes a lot more profitable to do everything else. Remember, "Once you get to earth orbit, you're halfway to anywhere in the solar system." - Robert A. Heinlein

mugaliens
2009-Feb-10, 10:07 PM
Lunar outpost for science and to build and attend a mass driver.

Yukmay
2009-Feb-10, 10:32 PM
Now that I think about it I think that something with a chance of giving some sort of return on investment in the future (maybe not for the 100 billion) would be best. Pure exploration is nice enough, but it's not going to stimulate further spending. With higher and higher energy costs in the near future, I'd like to see my 100 billion make a viable solar array (if its even possible), or maybe manned or unmanned regolith mining operations on the moon to get at the helium-3 (if that's even needed for fusion).

Then again a space elevator or lofstrom loop would make both of the above options more viable in the future.

KaiYeves
2009-Feb-11, 12:05 AM
I'd split it between moon colonization and solar power satellites.

Ronald Brak
2009-Feb-11, 02:24 AM
Improved computing power and programming as this should generate a huge amount of beneficial spin off.

m74z00219
2009-Feb-11, 02:28 AM
It's probably impossible, but to develop a way to tunnel energy over arbitrary distances with high efficiency. Something like distance independent evanescent coupling would be ground breaking. This would revolutionize energy on earth and even space travel. Imagine super high temperature stirling engines in tight orbit about the sun. They could generate tons of electricity and then tunnel it to receiver coils on Earth or even within spaceships. Perhaps even power a several gigawatt laser for torchships. This will probably sound familiar to you mugaliens ;)

m74

Doodler
2009-Feb-11, 02:36 AM
Infrastructure. Some reliable method of getting to and from orbit. After that, space becomes a lot more profitable to do everything else. Remember, "Once you get to earth orbit, you're halfway to anywhere in the solar system." - Robert A. Heinlein

I think this will do for my answer as well.

Van Rijn
2009-Feb-11, 07:22 AM
I think this will do for my answer as well.

Same here. I'd devote 5-15 billion to development of a rocket that could, if used often, have a relatively low cost per flight, and carry people to orbit. I have a hunch that a high-reliability two stage reusable design would be the best for that. The rest of the money would go to getting the rocket sold and used.

Ozzy
2009-Feb-11, 12:43 PM
An armarda of satellites and probes to orbit suns and planets in this solar system and beyond.

BrianC
2009-Feb-12, 08:11 AM
Oh no - don't waste it. Add it to the US Wall Street bailout so it can be paid in performance bonus. Oh sorry. right. It's not enough for that. :doh:

galacsi
2009-Feb-12, 11:15 AM
First help build space infrastructure :

. Develop an hybrid jet/rocket moter

. with it on the first stage , develop a small two stages HTO spaceplane (The sanger idea )

. If the small is successful do a big two stages HTO spaceplane with the current shuttle capabilities.

Then financing space developpement and exploration :


. Better space suits.

. Improvement of space stations with better air and water recycling

. Launch astronomical spacecraft , planet finders , new mission to Saturn , mission to Jovian moons and so on.

Keep a little change to buy Champagne and celebrate ! ;)

And also a little money to book a VIRGIN suborbital ride . . . and celebrate :eek:


. And that"s all folk !

ryanmercer
2009-Feb-12, 11:29 AM
I'd set a portion aside for rocket design, a portion aside for shielding, a portion for developing ET stations (Moon and Mars). Then I'd send us to both.

geonuc
2009-Feb-12, 11:29 AM
A single project? A manned Mars mission, with the intent on using new technology developed for this mission to apply towards manned missions to the Jovian system.

For 100 bill, I'd think we could develop a new propulsion system that doesn't rely on rocket fuel for space travel. We need something more efficient and capable of higher velocities.

My second choice: An array of space-based telescopes.
I'm endorsing this option. But with the caveat that I get to go.

Seeka
2009-Feb-12, 07:27 PM
Hmm i would be ignorant to the potential of what the money could achieve so i think i would build the biggest telescope possible! Plus send myself up to see the big blue spinning ball that we live on. :)

jt-3d
2009-Feb-12, 08:50 PM
I was going to say a moon base but a little drunken thought on the matter tells that we'd add too much weight and start messing up the moon's orbit. And from the shows I've seen, it's a delicate balance so I'd just as soon leave it alone.

Let's take it to Mars then. Off we go. I just hope we don't run out cash half way there.

Murphy
2009-Feb-13, 04:06 PM
I think I'd spread the 100 Billion on a few things, some on scientific exploration, but most on space infrastructure building.

I'd invest heavily in Solar Power Satellites, perhaps a few small test models at first, but eventually a Giga-Watt scale power beamer. Once one of them is up there and generating free electricity, governments and corporations around the world would see the great possibilities and would know how it can be done (I would obviously share all technical data freely for the good of mankind).

I think SPSs are the only real power source of the future besides Fusion, so we need to start immediately.

I'd then spend a good deal of the money on research into a Space Elevator, and if turns out it can be done, build one! A single space elevator alone would improve our access to space like never before and would allow mass scale building projects in Earth orbit (such as the SPS array) and really ease all exploration efforts.

If there was any money left over from all that, I would fund Planet finding space telescopes, either a whole fleet of them of today's quality (to find large numbers of planets) or a single much bigger and more advanced craft capable of finding (and imaging) Earth-like planets, and hopefully able to analyse their atmosphere's to try to detect life.

And if there's anything left after that, I'd get a few robotic probes to some of the more unexplored places in the Solar system.

I'd like to say I'd fund manned missions to the Moon and Mars and elsewhere, but considering where we are now, I think it would be better to focus on development of Earth orbit first, when that is done the manned exploration and colonisation can really begin in earnest.

publiusr
2009-Feb-13, 10:10 PM
If I had bill Gates money--and 100 billion?

The breakdown

$10 Bil on Ares V as is. No SSME
$20 bil on renewing Energiya line--moving complex to Homestead Florida for Energiya Stack
$20 Neo-Buran/Energiya infrastructure rebuilt/moved to USA, to keep STS jobs (Homestead would become a huge Russian Launch embassy. (A little money goes a long way there, and the engineers might like some free estates in Florida that I'd give them. Should be 20 billion. If more, I will omit the following:)


$20 Billion For Sea Dragon development and related SPS powersat demonstrator payloads.


$20 billion for large rotating station with small nuclear core, tankage for eventual cycler usage

I would hand the facilities over to NASA.

The remaining billions would be on various payloads for Ares V. A few hundred million to buy model toy shops that produce NASCAR collectibles--in order to shut them down. NASCAR fans then have to find resin garage kits for their hobby, while sci-fi realspace kits are at affordable prices on all Wal-Mart shelves.


The last few million? I would give that to Organized Crime for a perpetual 'contract' to....shall we say?...sanction, any enemy of NASA---with extreme prejudice!

ryanmercer
2009-Feb-13, 10:12 PM
If I had bill Gates money--and 100 billion?


The last few million? I would give that to Organized Crime for a perpetual 'contract' to....shall we say?...sanction, any enemy of NASA---with extreme prejudice!


Nice

publiusr
2009-Feb-13, 10:31 PM
I see sarcasm goes unrecognized. Perhaps a dioxin soup joke from the former Ukrainian president (also a rocket designer) would have been better received

timb
2009-Feb-13, 11:47 PM
Besides the obvious (a space policy consultancy for timb) I'd spend it all on space telescopes.

novaderrik
2009-Feb-14, 02:25 AM
Oh no - don't waste it. Add it to the US Wall Street bailout so it can be paid in performance bonus. Oh sorry. right. It's not enough for that. :doh:
they don't give out bonuses any more- they are something like "retention incentinves" or something like that now.

Gsquare
2009-Feb-14, 02:51 AM
Let's say Uncle Sam just gave you a check for $100,000,000,000 to spend on one single space related project? What would you guys spend it on?



I'd put an addition on my house and pay off the mortgage...before the Bail Out nonsense sends the interest rates back thru the roof.
:D
...

bunker9603
2009-Feb-14, 09:12 PM
***Deleted for being political***

Sticks
2009-Feb-14, 10:39 PM
Oh no - don't waste it. Add it to the US Wall Street bailout so it can be paid in performance bonus. Oh sorry. right. It's not enough for that. :doh:


This is skating on real thin ice concerning the rules concerning no politics, you are instructed to read the forum rules and comply

ryanmercer
2009-Feb-14, 11:21 PM
This is skating on real thin ice concerning the rules concerning no politics, you are instructed to read the forum rules and comply

It's nothing more than unbiased fact.

Swift
2009-Feb-14, 11:33 PM
It's nothing more than unbiased fact.
It doesn't matter if it is or not, even if it was made as a joke. It is entirely too close to political issues and it is derailing the thread. And if you have questions about moderator's actions, don't bring them up in the thread - there are more appropriate ways and places for such things.

ryanmercer
2009-Feb-14, 11:45 PM
It doesn't matter if it is or not, even if it was made as a joke. It is entirely too close to political issues and it is derailing the thread. And if you have questions about moderator's actions, don't bring them up in the thread - there are more appropriate ways and places for such things.

Well, in theme with the politics thing... since NASA was mentioned a few times, and it is very much involved with politics (as in the government has the say so in what to do with it, and even use it in campaigning, and was formed by the The National Aeronautics and Space Act a federal statue) wouldn't anything mentioning NASA be just as bad? And no, I'm not trying to start crap, I just don't see why you jump on him, but not someone every time NASA or NRO is mentioned... as they are government agencies which involve politics.

captain swoop
2009-Feb-15, 12:31 AM
mentioning a 'govornment agency' doesn't equate to politics, to suggest otherwise is being deliberately obtuse. Please, no more, as Swift has posted there are more appropriate ways and places for such comments

Yukmay
2009-Feb-15, 06:36 PM
I just want to reiterate that the money is for a SPACE based project. This means you cannot spend the money on: Bailouts, Home-improvement, escorts, or whatever else you guys dream up that is not space related. However I guess that a bailout for the space home/hotel industry would be technically appropriate, if a bit ridiculous.

PS: Let's all try and be nice to each other.

Pickled Tink
2009-Feb-15, 08:32 PM
What would i spend 100 billion dollars on... Well... that's a good question since i can easily survive on Aus$20 a week plus bills. Ordinarily I wouldn't know what to do with that much money. Perhaps I'd build a fort out of it. :lol:

As for the actual use of the money, manned missions to Mars, while one would be iconic and all, wouldn't be terrifically useful. De orbiting Phobos on the other hand will leave a grand crater, and as one of my favourite comics proudly exclaims: "Any experiment that leaves a crater is a success!". Its coming down in ten million years anyway, lets just speed it up. The remaining money would be spent on popcorn.

More seriously though, id probably invest it in a bigger, more modern version of Hubble. As big as we can possibly make it within the limits of our technology. Id personally like greater resolution for those deep field images, so we can tell more precisely whats going on back there, and, of course, much better images of stuff up close. Why? I'm curious. It would need an awesome name. Perhaps "Peeping Tom"

Spender
2009-Feb-16, 05:08 PM
A space elevator would be nice. It would make getting all the gear we would need for a Mars mission into orbit quite a bit easier.