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Elon Musk announced today that he plans to send humans to Mars by 2025.
http://www.universetoday.com/129313/elon-musk-sending-humans-mars-2024/

I want to know; Will Musk being going? Shouldn't he be the leader? Did Columbus send the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria, while he stayed home in Spain with Queen Isabella dancing the Flamingo? Did Teddy Roosevelt send the Rough Riders up San Juan hill alone while he sat back and sipped margaritas and smoked cigars? No, they didn't, and neither should Musk.

By the way, the artist's interpretation of the NASA Space Launch System Block 1 looks right out of KSP.

Edited by LordFerret

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A flamingo is a bird, not a dance.

Musk has claimed that he wants to die on Mars, so he definitely does plan to go one day. When he goes will probably be determined by whether he thinks he is more useful running his businesses on Earth or starving to death on Mars.

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5 minutes ago, Nibb31 said:

A flamingo is a bird, not a dance.

Musk has claimed that he wants to die on Mars, so he definitely does plan to go one day. When he goes will probably be determined by whether he thinks he is more useful running his businesses on Earth or starving to death on Mars.

Flaminko. 

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Damned auto-correct. :huh:

34 minutes ago, Nibb31 said:

When he goes will probably be determined by whether he thinks he is more useful running his businesses on Earth or ...

That's an interesting point. If and when he should, under what flag will this business fly, I wonder, and the implications and global legal brew-ha-ha over 'rights' and 'space agreements'.

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2024 is most certainly outrageous. Musk is always making announcements like this and never explaining how. Getting to the Moon in 8 years took a large share of the national budget and the support of most of the country, and Musk thinks he can pull off a much more difficult task without either of those? He's just conjuring numbers. 

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I have a feeling this entire Mars plan is beginning to collapse. If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

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49 minutes ago, Panel said:

2024 is most certainly outrageous. Musk is always making announcements like this and never explaining how. Getting to the Moon in 8 years took a large share of the national budget and the support of most of the country, and Musk thinks he can pull off a much more difficult task without either of those? He's just conjuring numbers. 

And the point? Ok, lets just say that I am skeptical, lets talk about what it takes. 

Premise one astronaut alive on landing on Mars. Keeping alive say 1 hour, long enough to plant the spaceX flag. 

1.. A ship capable of holding on man two hours, 500 kilos plus human, landing gear 100 kilo. Total required 600 kilo. 

2. A retro firing ship capable of landing 600 kilo on mars. We've done that with curiousity. 

3. Another ship to transport 1 human to mars and survive 18 months, health is not an issue. Sure why not we can do that. Just launch sveral F9H and join them in LEO and you can transport them to LEO, have human dawn a space suit and transfer tonthe lander. 

Can be done. I wouldnt want to be the fool, but i'm not going to make a fuss about hus plan. 

 

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Columbus was looking for India. That's why it's called the West Indies and why people call the native Americans Indians. He was looking for a new trade route to the East, to skip the Arabians and their control of Eastern goods. Mars isn't providing goods at all right now, and we're not going to land on another planet even route.

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4 hours ago, ChrisSpace said:

I have a feeling this entire Mars plan is beginning to collapse. If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

Not "beginning to collapse", but "approaching retro-burn point before unrapid planned soft landing".

Looks like a "hype rush" for me.

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Also, point of order: Columbus didn't stay home. However, the Queen stayed home, and she was the financier of the venture. Her place is more analogous to Musk's than Columbus', which would be the position of mission leader.

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8 hours ago, LordFerret said:

Did Columbus send the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria, while he stayed home in Spain with Queen Isabella dancing the Flamingo? Did Teddy Roosevelt send the Rough Riders up San Juan hill alone while he sat back and sipped margaritas and smoked cigars? No, they didn't, and neither should Musk.

Musk is not Columbus in this analogy. He's more Isabella. And in the Roosevelt analogy he's more McKinley.

The one who pays and/or orders does not generally go on the maiden voyage.

That said, you know he'd want to go.

EDIT: Ninja'd by @Jovus. I shouldn't have looked up McKinley to make sure I had the correct president :D

Edited by 5thHorseman

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Can't picture it happening. Though I believe SpaceX has the skills and capability to design and build the needed vehicles, they won't have close to the needed money by far.

And if they did magic it up from somewhere, I'm pretty sure that the government would put a stop to it one way or another.

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14 minutes ago, Frozen_Heart said:

Can't picture it happening. Though I believe SpaceX has the skills and capability to design and build the needed vehicles, they won't have close to the needed money by far.

And if they did magic it up from somewhere, I'm pretty sure that the government would put a stop to it one way or another.

I think the governemet would probably hand them a rock sack and buy the ride back. Talk about a deal!

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18 hours ago, LordFerret said:

Elon Musk announced today that he plans to send humans to Mars by 2025.
http://www.universetoday.com/129313/elon-musk-sending-humans-mars-2024/

I want to know; Will Musk being going? Shouldn't he be the leader? Did Columbus send the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria, while he stayed home in Spain with Queen Isabella dancing the Flamingo? Did Teddy Roosevelt send the Rough Riders up San Juan hill alone while he sat back and sipped margaritas and smoked cigars? No, they didn't, and neither should Musk.

By the way, the artist's interpretation of the NASA Space Launch System Block 1 looks right out of KSP.

No, because Musk is the financer, not the astronaut.

Also, Elon, please

*image removed for language*

16 hours ago, ChrisSpace said:

I have a feeling this entire Mars plan is beginning to collapse. If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

Not so much collapse, but SpaceX's constant overoptimism about dates it probably going to eventually kick their PR side in the a*s if they keep this up. Reuse can only keep people's attention for so long.

16 hours ago, PB666 said:

And the point? Ok, lets just say that I am skeptical, lets talk about what it takes. 

Premise one astronaut alive on landing on Mars. Keeping alive say 1 hour, long enough to plant the spaceX flag. 

1.. A ship capable of holding on man two hours, 500 kilos plus human, landing gear 100 kilo. Total required 600 kilo. 

2. A retro firing ship capable of landing 600 kilo on mars. We've done that with curiousity. 

3. Another ship to transport 1 human to mars and survive 18 months, health is not an issue. Sure why not we can do that. Just launch sveral F9H and join them in LEO and you can transport them to LEO, have human dawn a space suit and transfer tonthe lander. 

Can be done. I wouldnt want to be the fool, but i'm not going to make a fuss about hus plan. 

 

3 hours ago, Emperor of the Titan Squid said:

this is absurd, but still pretty darn cool. i guess with an EOR it wouldn't be too hard

TBH, you actually probably need more than 1 person- solitary confinement has shown the astronaut would probably go crazy on a 18 month Mars mission.

And I think Elon is talking about Mars FLYBY, in which case, the landers aren't necessary anyways. Technically you should be able to send a Mars Flyby with 2 SLS Block IB staged in EML-2, or about 5 FH in LEO (extra 1 for contingency, b/c of the lack of H2 upper stage). [Though it will likely be partially broken up into F9s instead due to the payload fairing being too small to allow for 50T of cargo to LEO]

That's probably not going to be easy to design. You would need to develop mass propellant transfer, first off, and potentially anti-boiloff tech if using a H2 transfer stage (or send another FH). Also, you would need to know how to keep a 4 man crew alive for over a year (never done before) while designing a HAB to survive deep space radiation and solar flare bursts. 

11 hours ago, kerbiloid said:

Not "beginning to collapse", but "approaching retro-burn point before unrapid planned soft landing".

Looks like a "hype rush" for me.

That never happens in my KSP game :(

8 hours ago, RenegadeRad said:

I don't have the patience...

You need a LOT of patience. People have been waiting since the 1980s to land on Mars. 2024 is more than optimistic. It's irrational.

 

2 hours ago, Frozen_Heart said:

Can't picture it happening. Though I believe SpaceX has the skills and capability to design and build the needed vehicles, they won't have close to the needed money by far.

And if they did magic it up from somewhere, I'm pretty sure that the government would put a stop to it one way or another.

The government wouldn't be able to, because it would end up being worse than when the Shuttle or Apollo was canned.

A better way if they actually wanted to would be to slowly starve SpaceX of government funds. Cancel the CCdev and COTS2 contracts with SpaceX. Stop buying military launches for SpaceX after the next rocket failure. And it only takes a disgruntled and overworked employee at SpaceX to mess up a launch, which is actually not that low in demand, apparently. That's what happened with the Proton.

2 hours ago, PB666 said:

I think the governemet would probably hand them a rock sack and buy the ride back. Talk about a deal!

Not even Congress would want Mars Voyagers to die on Mars.

Edited by B787_300
Moderator Edit for language

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Well as long as they keep progressing and keep doing fashy things, human nature will ignore thier failings. 

As per folks going crazy in 18 months, not a problem they are going tomdie an hour after theybreach Mars anyway. All you have to do is have a positive suggestion video, convince them to take thier helmet off before the air runs out, and the disappear into happy happy sleep land. 

 

You could justify it, someome with a disease that would kill them in two or three years  anyway, and create a very orecise GPS coordinate on Mars. You land the ship and the astronaut moves a 50 lb crabon fiber titanium cylinder, to that very precise GPS location he digs a small hole and buries part of it in the martian soil. At the top of the cylinder is a hook. He then goes out and fills the cylinder with rocks collected as many types for 10 hours or so. After the bin is full, he closes it, latches a top. He then walks away and finds a convinent place to not be. 

Another ship en route lands right on top of the cylinder just as the falcons land on the barge, if the naut is still alive he can go climb on top and catch a ride back into mars orbit. The basket is latched and reeled back into the ascent ship, protecting the naut from the ensuing liftoff stresses.  That ship then docks with an unmanned capsule, which the naut can crawl into, a robot inserts the package and the ship returns to earth. 

I don't see survival of one individual as a problem, just provide lots of media and interactions, maybe an anatomically correct android, lol. A wife bot that complains alot about facial hair, lack of table manners, every six months some after fight make up conjugation, that should suffice a reset. lol.

Though, personally i would not return to earth, i think Diemos is a better stopping point until you can find the right launch windows to return. I addition if i were that human, i think inwould ratger spend the remaining time building the foundations of a base, either on mars or a moon. something like a roman era bridge that uses martian stones to create a cosmic sheild the landable units can be inserted into. So if the lander ship left me a couple of months of supplies and maybe an outhouse to replinish my space suit. maybe a machine that can cut the rocks to the proper shape. 

 

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Okay a couple of Points that need to be made in this thread.

1. Elon says numbers and things that while are not outright lies often take about twice as long as he said to happen. SpaceX will go to mars at some point (I hope that it will be in the 2020s with people) but will most likely be in the 30s

2. During the 60s NASA got about 4.5% MAX of the federal budget (which was lower back then) (and about 2x what they currently get when adjusted to 2014 USD).  SpaceX is not totally relying on governmental money to do this (yes they have contracts with the government and got some money to make the rockets in the first place but not all that much)

3. Please dont bring Politics into this. what the candidates will or wont do is largely irrelevant. NASA has had HUGE effects on technology and science and thus is not likely to be totally dismantled.

4. Rockets fail all the time. another failure will not doom SpaceX just like all the Proton Failures have not doomed that rocket. Also The government will continue to buy launches for them if they think the pricing is right for the risks they are taking. if they want a surefire launch they will go with ULA. If they accept the risks of SpaceX and want to launch on a not quite perfect vehicle at a MUCH lower cost (60 Mil vs 120 Mil for comparable Masses to orbit) 

5. Depending on the mission you can do a LOT with a single launch. My Senior Design project (for an aerospace engineering degree) was a Mars Sample Return Mission (unmanned) we could fit absolutely everything we needed into a single Ariane V launch.  The lander and the orbiter were two totally separate spacecraft all for a low cost of 3.12 Billion dollars. (which over the ~8 year lifespan of the mission (from start of design to landing)  is not a ton) .

6. We dont know what SpaceX's mars plans really are.  We will find out in September when they announce more of the MCT and BFR architecture.

7. SpaceX does the (seemingly) impossible. No one thought that you could land a stage on a barge out in the middle of the Atlantic or bring it back to land with out huge costs.  No one really thought that they could build a rocket that performs as well as the falcon for less that 100 million a launch (and there are still conspiracy theorists that think SpaceX is loosing money on every launch because their rocket really costs over 100 million). 

8. the government can complain all it wants or try to stop them, they wont though because SpaceX is an American company and it would be a lot better for Americans to do it before the Russians or the Chinese (who are planning to get to mars by the 2030s).  

9. the first unmanned missions that SpaceX flies to Mars will be on the F9 and Falcon Heavy. any manned missions will be flown on the MCT/BFR (which has already been confirmed to be larger than the Saturn V).  And there has been a lot of advancement in materials and rocket technology since the 60s. 

10. SpaceX has plenty of money sitting around and more will be forthcoming.  They have a very profitable earth launching business which they are using to subsidize the development of needed technologies. Also SpaceX breaks the current Aerospace methodology by being able to do things at a MUCH lower cost than anyone else in the industry (mainly by being well vertically integrated). 

Edited by B787_300
spelling

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19 hours ago, LordFerret said:

By the way, the artist's interpretation of the NASA Space Launch System Block 1 looks right out of KSP.

There is a reason for this.

As for whether Musk himself will go? I dunno. I bet he wants to, though.

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1 hour ago, B787_300 said:

(and there are still conspiracy theorists that think SpaceX is loosing money on every launch because their rocket really costs over 100 million). 

I will take this, because I suggested this myself a couple of times, my suggestion comes because we know that Tesla loses money in every car made, and the fact that NASA are charged more than the commercial market flights, just that. We known nothing about the internal accounts of SpaceX, but if the rest of the musk enterprises loses money in their goods for a future market, we can think about the possibility that spaceX is doing the same.

Serious question, there is any info about SpaceX profits or internal costs?

Edit: I'm suggesting than the contracts from NASA is used to "subsidize" the other launchs, not that SpaceX as a whole is losing money

Edited by kunok

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38 minutes ago, kunok said:

Serious question, there is any info about SpaceX profits or internal costs?

Edit: I'm suggesting than the contracts from NASA is used to "subsidize" the other launchs, not that SpaceX as a whole is losing money

No we dont, but we do know that they have enough capital to buy the machines and land they need to build and fly the rockets.  Also while the published price is 60 Million that could only apply to the actual rocket and not the launch services (tracking, telemetry, integration, etc) . And the fact that SpaceX has enough money to be seriously discussing Mars Missions is also telling because most people wont pay for it. and how the Satellitie constellation is still being pursued (although they did get that huge investment from google IIRC) also implies that they are in the green.

Also while Tesla & Solar City might be slowly losing money that probably isnt actually the case (or i have not seen concrete numbers to the contrary) or is misleading based on how companies account for their money.  All I really know about Tesla & Solar City money situation is that Tesla managed to pay back the loan that they got from the government.

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If i were any public entity, unless i want to poke out double or triple for a launch on my own turf, i would go with SpaceX. They currently do not have the openings for that level of bisiness so ULA is still in businees. 

No growth business makes profit, they are almost always reinvesting at a loss, they use the capitalization of equipment and buildings, and their growth potential as equity for loans for further expansion. They make a profit in theres of the fair market of their enterprise. Thats why liquidity is such a problem for growth enterprises. Right now SpaceX has a tremendous value if you are ULA. Some wealthy country like say saudi Arabia (during the next boom) or Singapore, maybe even Vietnam might want to buy them. 

SpaceX as far as i can tell, at least until the BC facility opens is not in a situation of having supply outstriping demand. i see other problems, in Europe tech infrastructure is not good, thier current economicals that the guiana facility may be such a loss that its not going to be used in light of stiffer competition. ESA is turning into a payload maker. 

I see SpaceX pulling in businesses and companies that don't have a launch capability, once the BC facility they will have greater autonomy from the govt and more trustable with trade secrets of oversees firms.

Though i still think a launchpad on a volcanoe in ecuador is stilll a better idea. 

BC, boca chica. I know its called Brownsville but for me, it will always be called Boca chica.m

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11 hours ago, RenegadeRad said:

I don't have the patience...

Think about the billions of humans who have lived and died before people have landed on Mars. Why do you think you are are entitled to anything different?

4 hours ago, PB666 said:

You could justify it, someome with a disease that would kill them in two or three years  anyway, and create a very orecise GPS coordinate on Mars.

Notwithstanding the ethical issues (the media and the general public would tear your idea to pieces), dying people don't make very reliable astronauts.

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1 hour ago, B787_300 said:

No we dont, but we do know that they have enough capital to buy the machines and land they need to build and fly the rockets.  Also while the published price is 60 Million that could only apply to the actual rocket and not the launch services (tracking, telemetry, integration, etc) .

I doubt that. They don't sell rockets. They sell a launch service for payloads.

What the cost doesn't cover is the payload, the insurance, and probably a bunch of other costs.

The NASA COTS contracts are different though. NASA pays a bulk sum for delivery of X tons of cargo or Y crew rotations to the ISS. That also covers development of Dragon and Falcon, so NASA pays well above the $60 million. Estimates are that Dragon 2 flights will be valued at approx $150 million.

1 hour ago, B787_300 said:

And the fact that SpaceX has enough money to be seriously discussing Mars Missions is also telling because most people wont pay for it. and how the Satellitie constellation is still being pursued (although they did get that huge investment from google IIRC) also implies that they are in the green.

Who says they do have enough money? 

Also, the satellite constellation idea seems to have been dropped after they actually ran the business case numbers.

 

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