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About mikegarrison

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    Junior Rocket Scientist
  1. Bad science in fiction Hall of Shame

    Not my job to apologize for them, but I'll point out a few things. 1) Delta-V *does* *not* *matter* with the Epstein Drive. So there is no problem with the Canterbury. It was their schedule they were worried about, not their effectively unlimited amount of delta-V. 2) Ceres does not have 1g surface gravity. It's only 1/3 g. (Of course, the filming set does have 1g gravity, not much they could really do about it.) And it's been artificially reinforced to hold together with that 1/3 g spin. 3) Eros actually was going for Earth, until Miller convinced Julie to go to Venus instead. So everyone who observed it as going to Earth was simply accurate. Those accelerations were not random any more than a zig-zagging convoy is randomly crossing the ocean. It may randomly zig zag, but it's doing so around an overall consistent trajectory.
  2. Bad science in fiction Hall of Shame

    Sometimes I don't care, but sometimes I just can't get past when the setup is so blatantly contrived to justify what the author wants to write. This laser sat thing is one of those. String at least half a dozen extremely improbable or outright impossible things together all so you can set up a scenario where people wear exosuits to battle.
  3. Because it causes fewer diplomatic incidents to drop rockets onto your own territory than it does to drop them onto Japan or Korea.
  4. Bad science in fiction Hall of Shame

    So would anybody working in it.
  5. Bad science in fiction Hall of Shame

    Low Earth Orbit is simply a terrible place for a biohazard lab. Everything there is eventually going to come back down.
  6. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    Well, I believe the link was that SpaceX uses GPS to control their landings, so the question was how they would do that if landing on Mars.
  7. Colonization Discussion Thread (split from SpaceX)

    IIRC, Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars books, one of the first things people did before colonizing Mars was set up a "APS" constellation that was a combination navsat and comsat net. That seems like a pretty reasonable thing to do for anyone planning on doing more than just a token visit.
  8. Gelled propellant components

    The food industry works with gels all the time. I have seen articles about university engineering labs collaborating with their food science labs to learn how to handle gels.
  9. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    The real breakthrough that is allowing SpaceX and Blue Origin to make these propulsive landings is not a boost in their rocket's fuel efficiency. It is the increased capacity and speed of the computers onboard the stage to handle controlling the return flight and landing. Another important breakthrough compared to older rockets is reliable restarting and the ability to deeply throttle-down the engines.
  10. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    Um ... remember that a booster nearly empty of fuel is much, much lighter than when it started on the launch pad.
  11. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    Lots of dudes are never useful at all. But still, it seems pretty harsh to blow up dudes just because they are past their useful life.
  12. Gelled propellant components

    Carbon only leaves a smoke trail if you don't burn it all up.
  13. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    It is if you burn rich.
  14. Bad science in fiction Hall of Shame

    Send them an email and tell them they are doing it wrong. I'm sure they will appreciate the advice.
  15. Bad science in fiction Hall of Shame

    I already answered about the coffee. It was about the taste. That wasn't really coffee, it was a substitute. Somewhere along the line he found out he could make it taste more like coffee by crushing matches into it. As for smoking, if they can take a lethal dose of radiation and still control the resulting cancer, then I guess a little smoking won't kill them either.