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Cross posted at NMSTARG

In the two recent posts that dealt with the inglorious history of human presence in space (HERE) and (HERE), we saw that NASA was always at the mercy of the funding equation: No bucks, no Buck Rogers.

The posts were very critical of the Government for shortsightedness in underfunding NASA. So instead of history recording that shuttles to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) and the Moon (as seen in 2001: A Space Odyssey) were now commonplace, we are nowhere near that.

So the obvious question arises out of all of this: Is there something that can be done to solve the funding equation? In other words, is there a way to get to Clarke's and Kubrick's vision of the (near) future today?

Of course, the answer is yes, otherwise, we would be wasting perfectly good Daily Kos real estate!

We will present our case in the following order:

+ Spaceport Infrastructure
+ The Low Earth Orbit Transportation Vehicle
+ LEO Infrastructure
+ The Orbital Transfer Vehicle and Its Variants
+ Low Lunar Polar Orbit Infrastructure
+ Lunar Surface Infrastructure
+ Estimated Costs
+ Paying For It All
+ Revenue Streams
We saved the last two sections for last, so that the reader can ascertain whether the program as will be outlined is viable. Without the infrastructure laid down beforehand, there is just no way to pay for this grand adventure.

Ultimately, we will (gasp!) learn from the past and incorporate most of what NASA had wanted to do into our space program. There will be, however, one fundamental difference between what we are proposing and what NASA had wanted.

We will show in detail how to pay for everything.

::

Originally posted to The NM STAR Group on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 11:51 AM PDT.

Also republished by Astro Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (5+ / 0-)

    Reuse and commonality are the keys to a robust and profitable space program.

    by The NM STAR Group on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 11:51:57 AM PDT

  •  What is this (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Canis Aureus, Aunt Pat, pat208, BachFan

    a "Coming Soon" trailer?
    Don't tease me, bro! :)

    "That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence of themselves and the State ..."- Vermont Constitution Chapter 1, Article 16

    by kestrel9000 on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 12:02:30 PM PDT

  •  Oh, okay (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat

    I get ya. It's a series.
    I await with interest.

    "That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence of themselves and the State ..."- Vermont Constitution Chapter 1, Article 16

    by kestrel9000 on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 12:03:22 PM PDT

  •  As much as I hate the "Privatization" call (0+ / 0-)

    in the rest of society, I have to admit that private space organizations will probably be better placed to reap the goals of space than government agencies like NASA.

    And it's not because NASA or its people suck. They are awesome, and never get the credit or funding they deserve. But it's because space and space tech is such a political/budgetary football.

    Every election, politicians huff and puff about how important it is to fund space exploration. They promise us the Moon and Mars and $99.00 flights to LEO to join the thousand-mile-high club, and so on...

    ...but as soon as they get in office, the first thing they do is cut, cut, cut the space budget in order to look tough on spending. Space launches look expensive, due to their high-profile public nature. They're about as expensive as a week or two in Afghanistan, but these Congresscritters, many with zero real interest in science (or an active dislike) of it, see these massive smoke-and-fire launches as a tempting and expensive-looking thing to cut.  

    Oh, they do it with a tear in their eyes, sure, but the truth is, every step in the space program has to negotiate fifty state barriers, any one of which can pinch the straw and flush decades of effort down the toilet so they can fund a bridge to nowhere or something.

    A private company doesn't have to get get held hostage like that. They set their sights and, as long as there's money, they go. This private venture by James Cameron, to get valuable minerals from asteroids, would never be done by NASA, who'd have to please so many political masters just to buy a fuse to light the rocket with.

    I wish it weren't so, but our national priorities (self-serving vanity by our representatives) do not support robust exploration.

  •  Thanks pat208 for reposting to Astro Kos... (0+ / 0-)

    ... I do appreciate the interest and support.

    Astro Kos

    Daily Kos rocks!

    Reuse and commonality are the keys to a robust and profitable space program.

    by The NM STAR Group on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 06:39:39 PM PDT

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