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Win a trip to Space! Entries due tonite! December 31, 2008

Posted by Thomas Olson in distracting PR, hot air, suborbital tourism.

I go to this website, looking for a specific story, this morning, when I see an ad from Norton offering a drawing to “Win a Trip to Space”.

Reading the contest rules carefully, I find that the prize for two randomly-selected winners is a free trip on a Zero-G flight. Those two are then entered in a separate drawing for a sub-orbital ride.

However, the vendor for that sub-orbital flight isn’t mentioned. (Could it be because none are flying yet?)

Better hurry, though…drawing ends at midnight tonight!


How Cynical? Who, me? December 26, 2008

Posted by drspaceshow in Uncategorized.

This post is published as a courtesy to OldSpaceCadet, Dr. John Jurist, as he does not have his password to post this message. All comments regarding this post should be addressed to OldSpaceCadet.

How Cynical? Who, me?

A Christmas Eve Present from Rocket Man on http://www.rocketsandsuch.blogspot.com/ raises a very interesting issue:

The Emperor’s New Math

One metric ton is approximately 2204.6 lbs.

Twenty metric tons is therefore about 44092 lbs.

For $1.9B, Orbital Sciences may deliver 44092 lbs of cargo to the International Space Station (ISS) over the course of eight launches of its non-existent Taurus II rocket. By the way, the first stage of this rocket is derived from the Ukrainian-Russian Zenit. The same Russians we are worried about helping us through the Emperor’s self-made “gap.”

Back to the chalkboard. We divide 44092 lbs into $1.9B and find that Orbital will charge about $43092 per pound under its new commercial services contract to take cargo to ISS.

The KSC website shuttle faq reports that a space shuttle flight costs about
$450M to launch. They also say that a space shuttle costs about $1.7B to build.

The Emperor’s book, “Space Vehicle Design,” states on page 241 that
a space shuttle can carry about 16 metric tons (35273.6 lbs) to ISS on each
flight. Using the $450M per flight number from the KSC web site, that works
out to about $12757 per pound.

To summarize, go Commercial for $43092/lb.

Or go NASA for $12757/lb. (gold plated toilets and hammers included).

Or we could build a brand new space shuttle that could almost launch all of this cargo at once for less than the cost of paying for just one of the two
commercial contracts just awarded. For the total $3.5B offered, using NASA’s
numbers, we could buy two brand spanking new shuttles, launch each with their requisite loads, complete the contract obligations, and have two only slightly used space shuttles left over for whatever comes next.

What is wrong with this picture?

And there goes the Moon, or “Liar! Liar! Pants on Fire!” December 11, 2008

Posted by shubber in bailout, Congress, economy, finance, hot air, Manned Space, NASA, smack talk, thanksgiving, Uncategorized, Wasting Money.
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

So, if the alt.space gossip lines are right, there’s trouble a-brewing in the halls of NASA these days, with the Administrator (Mr. Griffin) apparently not terribly interested in working with the Obama transition point person (Lori Garver).

Kudos to Al Fansome for pointing this out (initially on the SpacePolitics.com website, from which this was shamelessly pilfered).

Tensions were on public display last week at the NASA library, as overheard by guests at a book party.

According to people who were present, Logsdon, a space historian, told a group of about 50 people he had just learned that President John F. Kennedy’s transition team had completely ignored NASA.

Griffin responded, in a loud voice, “I wish the Obama team would come and talk to me.”

Alan Ladwig, transition team member who was at the party with Garver, shouted out: “Well, we’re here now, Mike.”

Soon after, Garver and Griffin engaged in what witnesses said was an animated conversation. Some overheard parts of it.

“Mike, I don’t understand what the problem is. We are just trying to look under the hood,” Garver said.

“If you are looking under the hood, then you are calling me a liar,” Griffin replied. “Because it means you don’t trust what I say is under the hood.

Just remember, folks – you heard it here first, though: the Moon program is a bunch of hot air and will be cancelled with the many budget realities that are now facing the incoming administration, including the never-ending bailouts.

Hey, maybe Big Aerospace should ask for a $100 billion bailout (make up a reason) and use that to launch someone to the Moon?