Broadcast 2993 Open Lines

08 Oct 2017 Dr. David Livingston
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Guest:  Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston;  Topics:  Multiple space and current affairs topics were discussed.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding specific Space Show programs & guest(s) to the Space Show blog which is part of archived program on our website,  Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See


Welcome to our one segment 2 hour 23 minute Open Lines program.  I started our discussion with a long list of suggested topics including a recent WaPo (Washington Post) editorial stating that commercial space, going to the Moon and Mars, well, it is all absurd.  You can find the article by searching for the title of the editorial, "The mission to Mars is one stupid leap for mankind."  I mentioned many other articles and suggested topics and when possible, I provided the headline and the name of the publication/author so you that the item could readily be reviewed should you want to do that.  If you have trouble finding any of the articles or items I mentioned in the announcements, let me know and I will get you the direct link.  As for the WaPo editorial, be advised that I have invited the author to be a guest on The Space Show to discuss his ideas and understanding of space economics, commercial space, the Moon, and Mars.  I will let you know if the author replies and what he says so stay tuned for more on this matter. 

Our first caller was Ft. Worth John wanting to talk about the WaPo editorial.  John pointed out where he disagreed with the author but he did say if we were to go back to the Moon or go to Mars as a flags and footprint type of mission like we did with Apollo, that would probably prove a poor use of our money.  We then talked about people not being able to connect the dots to policy, policy makers and who we end up voting for.  I listed a few examples that are prevalent in California but the disconnect is widespread, not just in California.  Another topic John brought up was the idea that we were living in a simulation.  This was also a topic I suggested because Kim had sent me a great animated video explaining the concept of living in a simulation.  I provided listeners with the title so you could find it on YouTube but Kim posted the actual YouTube URL on the blog.  Thank you Kim.  I suggest you watch the video.  I found it both fun and informative.  But to the question are we living in a simulation, I have no clue.  If we are, I hope nobody trips over the cord and accidentally unplugs the super computer running the simulation.

Next up, I read an email from Adrian regarding the shape shifting ISS bacteria found that I mentioned as a possible discussion topic.  Adrian sent a Physics article explaining shape shifting bacteria in micro gravity (  Adrian also sent in a few notes about the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico which was damaged in the hurricane since I mentioned the damage in my suggested topics section.  One of the questions Adrian was asking was should we repair it or leave the big dish to China and their new one.  I commented that I would like to see it repaired and continued in operation.

Jeff from Tucson called to talk about his new project for a DIY Sputnik like satellite with a launch.  He posted the Kickstarter website and information on the blog so check it out.  If the project interests you, by all means contact Jeff.  I then asked Jeff for his thoughts on what Elon Musk said about his revised Mars plans, then the word from the first National Space Council meeting about returning to Mars.  You do not want to miss this conversation with Jeff.

Kim called to talk about several issues. One was the Musk BFR properties regarding the shockwave or acoustic signature of the large rocket.  I added to Kim's comments by relating my experience on the Saturn V and Shuttle pad at the Cape and seeing the water and sound dampening systems, plus the comments by multiple engineers last year when Elon announced the bigger version of the BFR as they questioned that size of the rocket given the acoustic issues and the laws of physics.  Kim had other topics she mentioned in her call so don't miss it.  Doug emailed in a suggested solution to the acoustic issue but Kim did not think it would handle the problem. 

NASA spinoffs came up and our caller suggested we check out the information on the spinoff website:

Dr. Doug called the show to provide us with his impact analysis of the SpaceX revised BFR and Mars plan on his efforts to do Lunar Cots and to take his mockup inflatable hab to Port Canaveral for the first FH launch.  Doug said that he decided his plans were not thwarted, explained why and he provided some assumptions about reusability, costs, economics, stockpiling, etc.  I challenged Doug on the credibility of the assumptions he was making but as I said, I did not have much data or info on these issues, that perhaps he had more info on which to base his assumptions though I don't think he did. His assumptions were more gut oriented that based on hard data.  I also suggested that perhaps Jerry in Florida had hard data that could be used with Doug's assumptions but I guess Jerry was not listening to the program.  I don't know if he had more data or not.  Doug and I went back and forth for several minutes but in the end we both agree that we should be going to the Moon, developing commercial space and getting to Mars.  We will hear more from Doug about his hab plans at the first FH launch as that date gets closer.  Hopefully some of you will be in the area and can see his habitat and report to us about it.  Before the program ended, I went through our upcoming schedule for the next few weeks.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog for this show. If you want to reach any of the callers for this show, please let me know.  




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