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#1 2003-10-13 15:23:03

Stephen30
Member
From: Wrexham United Kingdom Of Grea
Registered: 2003-10-13
Posts: 1

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]In what year does everyone think it's likely that we'll have the first manned mission to Mars?

I've just watched a programme on TV in the UK called Space Colonies which was very good with a gentleman called Dr Robert Zubrin and also an author called Marshall Savage, fascinating stuff  smile[/color:post_uid0]

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#2 2003-10-13 22:02:42

~Eternal~
Member
Registered: 2003-09-25
Posts: 211

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]2026 AD according to NASA.[/color:post_uid0]


The MiniTruth passed its first act #001, comname: PATRIOT ACT on  October 26, 2001.

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#3 2003-10-14 05:13:17

alokmohan
Member
From: india
Registered: 2003-09-14
Posts: 169

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Chinese success may accerate thing.We may watch oyt response.[/color:post_uid0]

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#4 2003-10-14 22:58:59

Free Spirit
Member
Registered: 2003-06-12
Posts: 167

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Who is Marshall Savage?  The name is familiar but fuzzy.[/color:post_uid0]


My people don't call themselves Sioux or Dakota.  We call ourselves Ikce Wicasa, the natural humans, the free, wild, common people.  I am pleased to call myself that.  -Lame Deer

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#5 2003-10-15 06:34:12

alokmohan
Member
From: india
Registered: 2003-09-14
Posts: 169

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]PLEASE ENLIGHTEN  ABOUT MARSHAL SAVAGE.I never heard.[/color:post_uid0]

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#6 2003-10-15 10:14:28

Bill White
Member
Registered: 2001-09-09
Posts: 2,114

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Marshall Savage wrote this book.[/color:post_uid0]

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#7 2003-10-18 19:41:55

Gennaro
Member
From: Eta Cassiopeiae (no, Sweden re
Registered: 2003-03-25
Posts: 591

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]In about 2078 and it will not be done by a democracy, but a future state not currently in existence.
They will honour the pioneering works of Robert Zubrin and others, however. Isolated visionaries who unfortunately were stuck in a value subjective age of narrow-mindedness and lethargy.[/color:post_uid0]

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#8 2003-10-19 01:38:25

Ad Astra
Member
Registered: 2003-02-02
Posts: 584

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]The first humans-to-Mars mission will probably be an international venture (using the same ISS partners) that will launch sometime just prior to the de-orbit of ISS.  I'm saying that it will happen sometime between 2025 and 2035.  The impetus will not be some bold geopolitical competition, and scientific exploration will probably not be the primary reason.  The purpose of the mission will be to sustain a human presence in space and keep the ISS colition together after the station reaches its end.[/color:post_uid0]


Who needs Michael Griffin when you can have Peter Griffin?  Catch "Family Guy" Sunday nights on FOX.

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#9 2003-10-19 09:05:50

dicktice
Member
From: Nova Scotia, Canada
Registered: 2002-11-01
Posts: 1,764

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]What's this about the ISS reaching its end? Certainly not before (1) it is upgraded, in which case it never really "ends" and (2) other space platforms have been assembled in LEO. How could any responsible organization "end it"? If the U.S. (what is inconceivable to me) ever ceased to support the ISS,  Russia surely would get a consortium together to prevent it from being de-orbited. They, in any case, will need put up another "Mir" before too long, both for paying space tourists and long-term microgravity medical and plant growth research needed for Mars expeditions--and now the Chinese as well. LEO obviously is a better "jumping-off place" than Earth's surface--which hardly can be repeated too often to elected individuals in power, concerned as they currently are by the Terrorism Wars.[/color:post_uid0]

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#10 2003-10-19 15:37:27

Ad Astra
Member
Registered: 2003-02-02
Posts: 584

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]ISS only has a finite life span.  As the equipment ages in the radiation environment of space, the life of ISS decreases.  I thought I heard somewhere that ISS was supposed to last 20 years; I don't know if that includes the time for assembly.  My concern is that the station will already be slated for retirement by the time a six-person capacity can be added. 

And ISS will be retired when its design life dictates; as we learned with Mir, operating the station for too long beyond its design life is an invitation for disaster.  Sure, the lifetime estimates for Mir were excessively conservative; but by 1997 it was clear that the station needed to be retired.[/color:post_uid0]


Who needs Michael Griffin when you can have Peter Griffin?  Catch "Family Guy" Sunday nights on FOX.

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#11 2003-10-19 17:49:18

dicktice
Member
From: Nova Scotia, Canada
Registered: 2002-11-01
Posts: 1,764

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Ad Astra: Granted what you say about aging hardware, but being modular, these initial space conglomerations can be discarded incrementally and/or added to, eg. Solar panels, internals like power converters and gyrodynes, evolving labs such as plant "greenhouses," living quarters including centrifuged sleeping quarters . . . all as the result of living-aboard experience and being supplied continually by Russia "in the interim" (my quotes but NASA-determined period) and now even China, since they've made sure of being compatible with the ISS (Russian designed) docking ports. So a great deal has been done which has surprising future growth potential. The situation is less fragile, now that there are three possible participants, but crossed fingers are highly recommended for the next year or two--when the political situation has a good chance of having got rid of a lot of what's holding things up (I mean down).[/color:post_uid0]

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#12 2003-10-20 21:42:13

RobS
Member
From: South Bend, IN
Registered: 2002-01-15
Posts: 1,701
Website

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Regarding the future of ISS, the problem I see with it is its orbit, which was chosen so that Baikonur could reach it. The Russians are now moving Soyuz launches to Kourou, right? That eliminates the need for the high inclination orbit. Does anyone have any idea what the delta-vee would be for a plane change to a 23 degree orbit? That's the minimum inclination orbit Kennedy can reach. I suppose the delta-vee is pretty high; several thousand miles per hour. Even an ion engine with 100 kilowatts of power output with take years to shift ISS into such an orbit. It would probably be easier to build a new ISS in a lower inclination orbit out of new technology and let the obsolete modules crash into the Pacific. As I noted on another thread, the ISS takes 40 tonnes of supplies to maintain a year (according to a recent article on Space.com). There will also be a severe problem buying spare parts in ten or twenty years because the materials will no longer be available.

As for the future of manned spaceflight, my GUESS changes every few months. The White House, as you probably know, has started studying the question. They could announce a plan as early as Dec. 17, the centenary of the Wright Brothers flight. More likely the announcement will be January (State of the Union address?) or February. The Congress has been holding hearings; the most recent, last week, was extremely critical of NASA being "stuck circling the block." Somewhere else there was a comment that there is more momentum for a Mars mission than in several years. The Columbia shuttle tragedy has forced a major reassessment, and this will probably be good for Mars flight. BUT please remember that NASA's budget will probably have to increase to $20 billion per year (from the current $15 billion) for a Mars mission to happen, and right now that kind of spending increase is very difficult. The US may have a $500 billion deficit next year after having modest surpluses just three years earlier. (I am avoiding a digression into politics here!).

Here's my timeline guess, subject to modification at least monthly, and sometimes daily!

2006: ISS core complete. There will probably be little if any additional construction on ISS for a few years afterward, though there will be steady improvements in life support systems.

2008: Orbital Spaceplane flies (unless NASA has lied to Congress and knows they really need more time and money to complete it than they say).

2008-2012: Orbital Spaceplane undergoes development and becomes the ISS lifeboat. Meanwhile, the shuttle lifts cargo to ISS a few times per year, possibly unmanned. An early development that should be pushed is the Transhab inflatable module, which fits inside the 4.5 meter diameter shuttle cargo bay but inflates to a module 10 meters in diameter. It is key technology for a Mars flight, for cheaply expanding ISS, and other possible uses.

2008-2014: This is the time to replace the space shuttle either with cargo EELVs (lifting up to 25 tonnes to low Earth orbit and 16 tonnes to ISS) or to develop a new heavy booster (needed, but very expensive). This is also the timeframe for development of return to moon technology, which could occur about 2014. This period may see a mini-moon race, as China appears to be looking toward the moon in the 2014 timeframe as well. I favor the Michael Duke "lunar reference strategy" one can read on Portree's "Romance to Reality" page. It involves:

1. A solar-electric (ion engine) vehicle with a mass of about 4-5 tonnes and a solar power output of about 450 kilowatts. Using 4 tonnes of xenon fuel, it could push 16 tonnes of payload to the lagrange 1 point (between the earth and moon) in about six months.

2. A "lunar-based vehicle" that can be refueled on the moon using ice from the north and south poles. The vehicle would have a dry mass of about 1.5 tonnes and would be able to hold up to about sixteen tonnes of liquid hydrogen and oxygen. With 6.5 tonnes of fuel launched from Earth, it could be pushed to L1 by a solar-electric vehicle and land 8 tonnes of payload on the lunar surface.

3. An intermittently manned station "Gateway" (this is the name the NASA planners have given it) at L1. It would consist of a transhab and would test out systems that work in deep space. It would mass about 16 tonnes.

4. Nuclear reactors on the lunar surface, an inflatable surface habitat based on transhab and buried for radiation shielding, and surface vehicles for exploring in the north or south polar region. All these are elements needed on Mars, but could be tested on the moon. A report I read on the web somewhere said joint plans for moon and Mars exploration are 50% more epensive than either option singly, so there is synergy in plans that involve the moon and Mars. In addition, the surface would have an eight-tonne automated system for harvesting icy regolith, extracting the water, electrolyzing it, and storing it as cryogenic liquids. Duke says such a system can make more than sixteen tonnes of fuel every six months. Developing such a system would further in situ resource utilizatin systems for Mars and automated rovers, also needed on Mars.

5. 2014-2024. Assuming we don't get "stuck" in earth orbit AND on the moon, this time period I hope will see six developments:
   A. Expansion of the moon base so that it is permanently staffed with about four to eight people.
   B. Maturity of the transportation system to the moon so that it can produce 200 tonnes of water or LOX/LH2 per year.  That's enough to support at least four lunar flights per year. A mission to Mars would need about twenty tonnes of LOX/LH2 to go from the L1 Gateway to trans-Mars injection.
   C. Development of a second-generation shuttle with a metal heat shield, possibly air-breathing engines to hypersonic velocities, and reduction in launch costs to $1000 to $2000 per kilogram (EELVs manage $5,000 or so; the shuttle is closer to $20,000 per kilogram, now).
   D. Development of a Mars transportation system based on the lunar system, using surface elements developed for lunar habitation.
   E. Regular tourist flights to low earth orbit, which are probably dependent on C to be cheap enough. Whenever C happens, lunar and Martian exploration will follow almost inevitably within a decade or so, because getting to low earth orbit is half the cost of getting to them.
   F. Extremely sophisticated unmanned space missions to Mercury, Jupiter orbit, Saturn orbit, Venus orbit, and the asteroid belt, because spacecraft could be transported to the L1 Gateway using the solar-electric vehicles and sent on their way using lunar fuel. These vehicles could mass over ten tonnes and have heavy nuclear reactors for powering ion engines, science equipment, and powerful radio transmitters. Large automated vehicles could be sent to Mars using this transportation system as well. If a water driller were sent, the first humans to Mars could arrive without any hydrogen, knowing there's plenty water in the ground beneath their feet.

So I can't see a Mars mission before 2024, or maybe 2022 if this period moved quickly. If we eliminated the moon entirely, it could happen by 2015. This is possible, especially if the Chinese moon program accelerates; NASA may decide NOT to look like it is competing with the Chinese, leave the moon to them for a while (been there, done that), and go straight for Mars.

The 2024-2034 period would see a bigger moon base, gradual establishment of a Mars base, development of low earth orbit tourist facilities, and possibly lunar tourists. A space elevator could accelerate things if it is practical and can happen.

      -- RobS[/color:post_uid0]

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#13 2003-10-21 10:27:11

dicktice
Member
From: Nova Scotia, Canada
Registered: 2002-11-01
Posts: 1,764

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]RobS: It's going to be very hard to find fault with your scenario (particularly since you threaten to make changes to it as often as daily) so I'll do a printout and pin it to the wall, and refer to it as I attempt to accelerate certain events I'd never live to see, unless I do. In particular, the crewed Mars expedition. I'll die happy if I live to experience (virtually) the initial discoveries made by the first humans to successfully establish themselves on Mars.[/color:post_uid0]

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#14 2003-10-21 11:56:30

RobertDyck
Moderator
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,445
Website

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Launch Complex 39 at Kennedy Space Center is at latitude 28.6189º North, and maximum lift capacity for Shuttle is usually quoted to 28.5º. If you want to move ISS then I would suggest that inclination. Baikonur is at 46.0º so that inclination would actually be better. I believe the reason ISS was built at 51.6º inclination was so Russia could shift operations to Svobodniy. Area 5 of Svobodniy is at 51.7º latitude and that is where Angara was going to launch from. Svobodniy was going to be the civilian/commercial cosmodrome within Russian boarders, but the price would have been 4 trillion roubles. Construction was never finished because "funding was not available".[/color:post_uid0]

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#15 2003-10-30 16:24:42

dickbill
Member
Registered: 2002-09-28
Posts: 749

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Why does Robert Zubrin still continues to import his 6 tons of hydrogen in his Mars direct mission adress to the senate , rather than to electrolyze the water ice in-situ ?

Isn't the ice supposed to be 4 feet below the ground in the high latitudes. I guess that if  Mars direct lands in the relatively ice-free equator, then yes, you need the hydrogen, but why to land in an ice-free region ?
Why not to land where the ice is and produce the hydrogen from it ?[/color:post_uid0]

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#16 2003-10-30 17:43:22

Shaun Barrett
Member
From: Cairns, Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2001-12-28
Posts: 2,843

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid4]Hi Dickbill!
    Dr. Zubrin's plan is a kind of failsafe one. He's only using data from Mars we're totally sure about and technology we know for a fact that we can count on.
    In addition, the fuel manufacturing device needs to be kept as simple as possible, at least for the first one or two missions. After all, there won't be any astronauts there to supervise drilling operations which attempt to find subterranean water. Too many things could go wrong, so its more sensible to take pure H2 from Earth.
    It's just a safety thing.
                                         smile[/color:post_uid4]


The word 'aerobics' came about when the gym instructors got together and said: If we're going to charge $10 an hour, we can't call it Jumping Up and Down.   - Rita Rudner

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#17 2003-10-30 23:08:27

RobS
Member
From: South Bend, IN
Registered: 2002-01-15
Posts: 1,701
Website

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]Not only does the plan assume water is not available for the first flight--which is the safe thing to do--but it assumes one has to land near the equator because high latitude launches require a plane change in orbit before trans-Earth injection. This increases the fuel needed for the return flight.

      -- RobS[/color:post_uid0]

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#18 2003-10-30 23:09:21

GCNRevenger
Member
From: Earth
Registered: 2003-10-14
Posts: 6,056

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid0]It seems that such a plan to go to the Moon first to mine ice would have a few other advantages besides saving fuel weight of the Mars ship on launch, and the proposed plan has a couple of drawbacks...:

Advantages:
-Learning to fly a verticle-down reuseable lander with signifigant mass, a requisit for a Mars mission. The high flight rates of the LBV will be excelent practice.
-Ready supply of water/fuel in Lunar orbit, saving launch mass for a Mars ship from Earth, which should be large as practical.
-Regaining a little public interest in Nasa, a nessesity to keep its coffers from being robbed by a "soup kitchens not rockets" future administration.

But, there are some disadvantages...

-The 8,000kg payloads to the Moon's surface frankly seem a little small to me. A large nuclear power plant needed to generate more fuel than Lunar operations would use may weigh as much as 20 tons (the max practical on EELVs) or a large solar farm would also be quite heavy. Spend the extra money on more EELV launches today to seperatly launch & fuel a much bigger 20 ton payload LBV in LEO today instead of a whole new vehicle down the road. ISS will require 40,000-70,000kg a year not counting construction to keep it up there. A mere 16,000kg to the Moon two or three times a year for supplies and construction sounds miniscule to me.

-Long transit times to Lunar orbit via the solar ion tug: as efficent as ion drive is, it is still very slow, too slow to fly anything manned, living, or containing cryogenics. Plus, building an ion drive that powerful would not be so simple a task as it might first sound. Instead, stick with a cryogenicly fueled orbital transfer tug that could haul enough fuel from the Moon for the round trip and be able to make it in a few days. This way, a slightly modified OSP itself could be used as a "manned payload module" if transit times were kept short. If carrying that amount of fuel from the Moon's surface would be a problem, then its time that Nasa dusted off an old new technology...

Nuclear thermal rocket engines. It is not difficult to imagine an engine capable of a 225% improvement in fuel efficency over the best LOX/LH engines and still have enough thrust for a fast flight, engines of 180-190% efficency were tested in the 1960s. A well built nuclear rocket would actually be safer than a regular combustion rocket, since only one turbopump is needed. This same engine could simply be stacked up for use at a Gateway-launched manned Mars mission with few modifications. Double Martian payload for better radiation shielding, on-site hydrogen stocks, more drones, bigger labs, larger crews etc... or halve transit time if you prefer.

Cargo lander vehicles with such low masses and tugs with low useful flight rates will severely dampen meaningful not-flags-and-footprints missions off this damp rock. With economies of scale of increased flight rate and the development of a RS-84 flyback booster instead of SRBs/CBCs boosters, the 20,000kg version of the EELVs would permit cost effective routine flights carrying substantial masses to LEO such that Nasa could postpone "Shuttle-II" for a very long time.

Large 20 ton masses to the Lunar surface are really needed to start a Moon-to-Mars fueling strategy for routine high-mass flights when an SDV and go-ahead for a Mars mission are available down the road so we can expand humanity instead of just poke holes in Martian soil and find dead bugs only to go home for another few decades...

Now about the ISS...

The ISS cannot be "upgraded" quite so easily as Nasa would like I don't think. ISS is only somewhat modular, now the modules are all but welded together. Replacing the older sections of the station would be quite a feat, and even harder is to find replacement parts for such a complex beast that has had such a huge lead time in construction. Some small ISS contractors have already gone out of business, forcing Nasa to have Shuttle bring down bad parts to be fixed and relaunched. I think a day over 20 years for ISS is optimistic, putting the end-of-mission life around 2020 or so. If semireuseable EELV flights become common, this should not be too difficult to achieve with a ATV-style light orbital tug and OSP.[/color:post_uid0]


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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#19 2003-11-15 09:26:28

Wim
Member
From: Belgium (Antwerp)
Registered: 2003-11-15
Posts: 58
Website

Re: FIRST MANNED MISSION?

[color=#000000:post_uid4]Humans to Mars ... I would guess in the year 2030 by ESA/NASA/?  yikes[/color:post_uid4]


Dit anibodie sea my englich somwere ?

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