Broadcast 651 (Special Edition)

The Space Foundation Conference

09 Jan 2007 Jonathan Goff
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Jonathan Goff was the special guest for this Space Show program. We began the discussion by Jon asking about the possibility of using launch and hardware possibilities for returning to the Moon rather than what NASA is telling us it will use for the VSE. Jon went through several options with the pros and cons. We talked about heavy lift versus using existing EELVs, using earth orbit rendezvous rather than exclusively using lunar orbit rendezvous, and the need for on orbit propellant depots. At this point, our discussion focused on orbital propellant depots and Jon discussed these in some detail. Many listeners asked him questions about this from the cost of using Atlas and Delta EELVs, foreign launcher issues, the potential offered by the Falcon 9 depending on its real numbers when it flies, other factors. We looked at R&D costs, maintenance and repair issues and costs, a private, commercially operated orbital propellant depot vs. a government built and operated propellant depot. This is an important discussion you will want to hear. We also discussed doing the lunar program sooner or as referred to by our guest, "Lunar Much Sooner." Jon also spent much time updating us as to the progress being made by Masten Space Systems, potential timelines for Masten, and their project development progress. We talked about spaceports and Masten's probable use of additional spaceports as they develop around the country. Toward the end of the program, I asked John to identify for us some of the engineering and technology issues needed to transform us to a space-faring economy and society, the timeline for doing this, and how long it would take for us to be well along in the process and to realize we are well along in the process. Jon responded with a top ten list of what it would take for us to be transformed to a space-faring society from the engineering and technology perspective. You will want to hear his list, don't miss it! Jon has an important blog, Not only does he update Masten progress and news on the blog, but he comments on many of the issues we talked about during the show and others that will be forthcoming. Readers of the blog have the opportunity to respond to Jon and participate in the dialog so I urge listeners to make his blog,, regular reading. If you have comments or questions for Jon Goff, please email him at



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