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View Diary: Space Dreams: Keeping America from being Grounded and outa Space (23 comments)

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  •  Sorry, Mars Direct fails... (4+ / 0-)

    Zubrin sells some books here and there, but I think it is better for us to look to the long term for a full-out space presence rather than simply tagging Mars on a high-tech relay circuit.

    Now, the core concept of looking at the solar system as one potential energy surface with gravity wells stuck in it is a good one.  I definitely agree that an interplanetary cruiser, perhaps serviced with depots, is a sound node in any serious and persistent space transportation network.

    The Earth to space node of the network is still a surprisingly tough nut to crack, economically speaking.  A couple of launches a year to the Station aren't enough to support the operations crews needed to keep things flying.  I think the Space Tourism folks will be doing yeoman's work there, flying up a lot of little payloads and getting used to doing that job.

    Meanwhile, we should continue to work on increasing the robustness of our space presence.  Space is, after all, at its record high number of permanent occupants.  There is some small measure of progress there.  The trick is to keep it moving and find meaningful and sustained activities to layer on top of the more daring trips.

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