Moon Shot - The Next Step

First private sector mission concepts, potential revenue streams, what various companies and organizations are doing along these lines, <b>closely</b> related topics

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joertexas
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Moon Shot - The Next Step

Post by joertexas » Wed May 19, 2010 2:48 pm

Okay, folks. Since I've been dragged kicking and screaming into this lunar ice mining mission thing, I thought I'd create a new thread for planning purposes...

So far, Rhys, Logan, Sam and myself, among others, have been kicking the figurative tires on this idea. We've used our Google-Fu and found that there are ideas and plans galore available to us. What we didn't have is a clearinghouse for these ideas.

Mark's original objective for PERMANENT was, and is, to establish a human presence in space outside of our governments' scientific and flag planting efforts. In short, he wants to make a difference here while opening space to human settlement.

The only way we can accomplish this is to use fuel and other materials from the moon. I ask everyone to please forward web links to one of us, or post them here, and to contribute to the discussion so we can hammer out a plan.

If you think this plan is a bad idea, then that is your opinion. However, the purpose of this thread is to advance the idea and come up with a saleable plan, not to debate the idea.

Thanks,

JR

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joertexas
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Google X prize

Post by joertexas » Fri May 21, 2010 3:57 pm

Okay, to kick things off, I'm submitting this link as something to think about:

http://www.googlelunarxprize.org/

There are 21 teams in the race at this time..

JR

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Post by Rhyshaelkan » Mon May 24, 2010 10:22 pm

We might be able to piggy back. Perhaps not win all the x prize money ourselves. However it might get us our probe mission as we want. At a reduced flying cost.

http://astrobotictechnology.com/2010/03 ... -the-moon/


In addition, some commentary from the Nasa Space Flight forum on the google x prize.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index. ... ic=21531.0

The prize money would be nice. However I am more concerned with the state of the hydrogen at the lunar poles. As that will tell us how the next step should be accomplished.
I am not a professional. I am a rational amateur who dreams about humans going into space.
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John Hunt
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Clarifying Question

Post by John Hunt » Tue May 25, 2010 6:19 pm

Great! I'm all in!

But I have a clarifying question first. You mention's Mark's objective as to establish a human presence in space. But then the two of you immediately shoot very well short of this idea by referencing very minimalistic Google Lunar xPrize missions. This is extremely far from establishing a human presence in space.

So what is this thread about? Developing a mission for:
1) how we in this forum can get our own first minimalistic moon mission?
2) all phases of a mission from the very first xPrize-like mission all the way through to a lunar human colony? or
3) a set of missions to establish a human presence on the moon presuming that we can get entities (e.g. NASA, an international consortium, commercial, etc) to fund a robust set of missions.

Let me tell you what I hope this thread to be about. I would like for it to be all about Mark's goal of establishing a permanently manned off-Earth base, I would say on the moon.

I would like for us to be initially agnostic about how we get there. We do not rule out one thing or another. It doesn't have to be 100% commercial or private. We may (and in my opinion will) develop a plan and a method of selling the idea which will win huge funding (preferably the largest funding which is NASA). I have a definite and I think practical idea of how this can be done. I would be willing to participate in developing a pay-as-you-go or commercial only design plan but I personally feel that it will be a waste of time because the plans for NASA are still up in the air and could, I believe, be directed in a productive direction and would be the fastest way to achieve our goals.

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Post by John Hunt » Tue May 25, 2010 6:54 pm

Let me add the following resource. Paul Spudis has an excellent vision for how to return to the moon.

http://www.spudislunarresources.com/Pap ... disNDU.pdf

A key point he makes is as follows:

"What is needed is an architecture that permits lunar return with the least amount of new vehicle development possible (and hence, the lowest possible cost.) Such a plan will allow concentration of effort and energy on the most important aspects of the mission: learning how to use the Moon’s resources to support space flight beyond low Earth orbit".

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Post by joertexas » Tue May 25, 2010 7:34 pm

[quote=""JohnHunt""]Great! I'm all in!

But I have a clarifying question first. You mention's Mark's objective as to establish a human presence in space. But then the two of you immediately shoot very well short of this idea by referencing very minimalistic Google Lunar xPrize missions. This is extremely far from establishing a human presence in space.

So what is this thread about? Developing a mission for:
1) how we in this forum can get our own first minimalistic moon mission?
2) all phases of a mission from the very first xPrize-like mission all the way through to a lunar human colony? or
3) a set of missions to establish a human presence on the moon presuming that we can get entities (e.g. NASA, an international consortium, commercial, etc) to fund a robust set of missions.

Let me tell you what I hope this thread to be about. I would like for it to be all about Mark's goal of establishing a permanently manned off-Earth base, I would say on the moon.

I would like for us to be initially agnostic about how we get there. We do not rule out one thing or another. It doesn't have to be 100% commercial or private. We may (and in my opinion will) develop a plan and a method of selling the idea which will win huge funding (preferably the largest funding which is NASA). I have a definite and I think practical idea of how this can be done. I would be willing to participate in developing a pay-as-you-go or commercial only design plan but I personally feel that it will be a waste of time because the plans for NASA are still up in the air and could, I believe, be directed in a productive direction and would be the fastest way to achieve our goals.[/quote]

Your hope is correct - I started this thread expressly to discuss any and all plans we can devise to get us to the moon, by whatever method. I mentioned the Lunar X Prize merely as a means to an end.

JR

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Post by John Hunt » Tue May 25, 2010 8:08 pm

Great!

Is there a means to making decisions here? We all have our opinions. In a forum we can discuss ideas endlessly but how do we as a group come to conclusions? Do we need to first agree upon an overall plan and then break it down and figure out the components?

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Post by joertexas » Tue May 25, 2010 8:30 pm

[quote=""JohnHunt""]Let me add the following resource. Paul Spudis has an excellent vision for how to return to the moon.

http://www.spudislunarresources.com/Pap ... disNDU.pdf

A key point he makes is as follows:

"What is needed is an architecture that permits lunar return with the least amount of new vehicle development possible (and hence, the lowest possible cost.) Such a plan will allow concentration of effort and energy on the most important aspects of the mission: learning how to use the Moon’s resources to support space flight beyond low Earth orbit".[/quote]

My "aha" moment in this report came at the part where the lunar temps are in the -50C range - well within the capabilities of most materials to withstand..

JR

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Basic Outline

Post by John Hunt » Tue May 25, 2010 11:13 pm

OK, In order to help facilitate thus process, let me try to describe a basic outline here.

Let's say that the destination is the moon.

The end goal will be a manned base with enough capability that a couple of things are within reach: 1) the capability to support commercial activities which could be profitable and 2) providing enough of its own life support to put it within reach of being self-sustaining.

The goal is to reach this state as soon as possible working with any entities who could help us reach that goal.

The path of how to get there is open to discussion. What we are working on is to identify that path. When we figure out this path then our strategy would be to promote this plan until those with the ability to make it happen have adopted it as their own.

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Post by John Hunt » Tue May 25, 2010 11:40 pm

Now, presuming we are agreed upon the basic outline then I'd like to begin suggesting my personal recommendations.

I think that there can be a convergence of interests and plans if we come up with a smart, inexpensive, and safe plan. I think that China's interest is national pride. They would rather see a Chinese land on the moon than be a junior partner in the US Mars mission. If the US goes to an asteroid and Mars, China will still go to the moon. Same with India. Russia wants to make money along the way.

I think that the interest of the US is to continue to lead but within a budget. So, if we show the Admin that the development of the moon can still be done cheap enough while not jeopardizing glorious things like going to an asteroid and a moon of Mars then they will go for it. They are not rejecting the moon. They think that they have to choose between the moon and these other things because Constellation was costing so much. Show them a very cheap Constellation where others are bearing much of the costs and they will come along.

Now, the interests of xPrize, SpaceX, XCOR, Masten, etc is to establish a permanent human presence in space and in a way where private companies are making a profit, hence it is sustainable. I believe that this is our motivation too.

So, I see all of this coming together if we can come up with plausible plan that is not too expensive to any entity. But, even if you have a good plan it will not necessarily be adopted. Probably we will need to get representatine. Credible representatives from each entity to buy into it and be willing to publically support it. Then we need enough official exposure to get broad acceptance.

So first we need to come up with a good plan. I believe that the plan is pretty obvious and straight forward and has been pretty well articulated by Paul Spudis. But it needs to be written up in a PR way, graphics produced, given a website, given a name, and then promoted...and soon before irreversible commitments (on the part of the US) are made.

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