Space Exploration Day commemorates the July 20th anniversary of man’s first historic landing and walk on the surface of another celestial body. What had once been a topic for science fiction stories, had become an awe inspiring reality. Sending astronauts to the Moon, increased mankind’s sense of dignity and self worth. On July 20, 1969, there was peace in Viet Nam. The New York City crime rate dropped dramatically. The brotherhood of mankind shared in this symbol for peace and progress in the world. Where the conflicts in the world brought out mankind’s destructive tendencies; sending astronauts to the Moon revealed mankind’s creative nature. The Apollo 11 astronauts came in peace for all mankind.
“Men all over the world were hushed with awe, and world-renowned television commentators were speechless, as they watched and tried to explain the activities and easy strides of the astronauts on the lunar surface. Millions said, ‘How can young people withdraw from a world of this kind’”.(David O. McKay’s October 3, 1969 LDS General Conference Address, at the Mormon Tabernacle in Salt Lake City, Utah.)
Space Exploration Day goes beyond the Apollo 11 Moon Landing to also include the spirit of exploration in general. In Plato’s dialogue between Socrates and Glaucon, the following discussion takes place on the subject of Astronomy. Socrates: “I admit it is difficult to convince the multitude, but in every man’s soul there is an organ which is purified and kindled afresh by such studies. This faculty is destroyed and blinded by ordinary pursuits. This eye of the soul outweighs ten thousand bodily eyes, for by it alone is truth seen.”
There is a unique inspirational value that comes from viewing the wonders of nature. This exploration of the unknown is a natural instinct that is very apparent in young children. We grow and learn to appreciate the joy of life through our discoveries. Space Exploration is a discovery process that all mankind can share together. The space frontier is filled with beauty, mystery, and wonder; whether we are viewing the thousand rings around Saturn, or the active volcanoes on the moon Io; or even watching astronauts walking on the surface of Earth’s Moon. It requires a spark of divinity in Man and Woman, to appreciate God’s Universe. As we share an appreciation for God’s creations, we can also learn to become more benevolent to our fellow man in life. Science fine tunes our minds, but we must fine tune our spirits. As we recognize the hand of God in all things, we are drawn to where we came from.
Science fiction writer H.G. Wells stated the following in his classic Things To Come: “For man there is no rest and no ending. He must go on –conquest beyond conquest. First, this little planet, and its winds and ways. Then all the laws of mind and matter that restrain him. Then the planets about him; and at last out across immensity to the stars. And when he has conquered all the deeps of space, and all the mysteries of time – still he will be beginning”.
Archive for May, 2009
Attend 10 or more hours of programming at ISDC 2009 (at least 2 days) and you are eligible to apply for 1 CEU credit from our partner colleges! Participation in the CEU process formalizes your commitment to remain current in the developments of the space industry. Employers may be willing to subsidize the nominal cost of the CEU.
Details and applications will be available at the ISDC registration desk.
The Obama Administration today announced the launch of an independent review of planned U.S. human space flight activities with the goal of ensuring that the nation is on a vigorous and sustainable path to achieving its boldest aspirations in space. The review will be conducted by a blue-ribbon panel of experts led by Norman Augustine, the former CEO of Lockheed Martin, who served on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology under Democratic and Republican presidents and led the 1990 Advisory Committee on the Future of the U.S. Space Program and the 2007 National Academies commission that produced the landmark report, Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future, as well as a number of other high-profile national
Reactions to the new Commission
The Philosophy of Space by Dennis Wingo
Bob Park gets his wish: “It’s time for another Augustine Report” by Michael Huang
Augustine and Griffin from the archives - Space Politics
The winners of the grand prize in the 2009 NASA/NSS Space Settlement Design Contest have been nicely written up in the press.
Eric Yam, a Toronto high school student, was featured in an article in the Toronto Globe and Mail. Eric shared the grand prize for his modular design called “Asten,” which is 1.6 kilometers long, 1 kilometer wide, and could be home for 10,000 people. An illustration is shown below.
Eric’s complete design submission is available on the NASA and NSS websites as a 12-MB PDF file. He will be a guest at the International Space Development Conference in Orlando at the end of May.
Sharing the grand prize were Pooja Bhattacharya and Swastika Bhattacharya of Orissa, India. They were written up in an article in The Times of India. ODISA: Orissan Design Inspired Systems and Aerovehicles was the title of their submission.
Return to the Moon: Outpost or sorties? By Dr. Paul D. Spudis.
In the question and answer period, he made a rather startling statement to the effect NASA was still trying to understand what “lunar return” means - that an outpost would be “expensive” and that lunar return might instead entail a series of smaller scale sortie missions, similar to the later Apollo expeditions of the early 1970’s. He added that people should remember that the “original purpose” of the VSE was to prepare to go to Mars and other destinations.
I found this exchange fascinating because it suggests that NASA, as an executing entity, still doesn’t fully understand the nature of their mission to the Moon and to the extent that it is understood, they have transformed it into something very different from what the VSE actually said and what was intended.
October 4, 1957, when the first artificial satellite began orbiting the Earth, nations reacted with fear of atomic bombs launched by rockets. Sen. Lyndon B. Johnson, Chairman of the Preparedness Subcommittee of the Senate Armed Services Committee, asked Eilene Galloway, National Defense Analyst of the Library of Congress, to serve as Staff Consultant for hearings on U.S. preparedness in space. When it became clear that the problem involved scientists and engineers in more than military aspects, the Senate organized the Special Committee on Space and Astronautics, which Eilene served by formulating questions for witnesses and analyzing testimony.Outer Space (UNCOPUOS), where she represented the United States at many meetings. She was Editor of Space Law Senate Symposium (577 pages), 1958.
In 1958, Sen. Johnson sent Eilene to represent the United States at a meeting of the International Court of Justice in The Hague, where she gave a speech on “The Community of Law and Science.” She was also helpful in establishing the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of
Guests: Mark Hopkins and Tim Bailey. Topics: ISDC 2009, NSS, space solar power, continuing education credits. Mark and Tim were our guests today to discuss the upcoming ISDC 2009 in Champions Gate near Orlando, Florida. ISDC 2009 is scheduled for May 28-31, 2009. We discussed much of the programming for the conference, even some unique programming with an Estes rocket competition, continuing education credit, tours of the Kennedy Space Center and much more. Mark also told about the keynote and main speakers which are a representation of Who’s Who in space. You do not want to miss hearing what these people have to say. Space Solar Power (SSP) was mentioned as it is given extensive coverage at the conference. Mark also talked about the famous ATWG debate from Dec. 2008 where Pete Worden argued there was no business case for SSP. Mark provided some additional insights on this issue and suggested a better debate focus than the one used at the ATWG event. Tim and Mark pointed out some other interesting programming dealing with human factors, congressional advocacy training, and the gala evening, hotel and meal registration, etc. ISDC 2009 appears to be a great conference in the making and I believe it will be one of those events you will not want to miss. The ISDC 2009 website for hotel, registration, and information is www.isdc2009.org.
by James M. (Mike) Snead
An interesting and timely debate has begun within the American pro-space community about the need to support the start of the commercial development of space solar power (SSP). Given strongly held personal and organizational preferences for space science, suborbital commercial human spaceflight, the human exploration of Mars, etc., it’s not surprising that achieving a consensus to support and strongly advocate for starting the commercial development of SSP has not yet been reached. I argue that the time for such support has arrived. Such support will not only help America and many other nations avoid energy scarcity later this century, but it will also help advance America into a new era of the space age focused on space industrialization that will broadly benefit all pro-space agendas.
NASA and the White House have agreed for the first time to release money to the human spaceflight option in its Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, or COTS program.
Under an agreement hammered out with the White House, NASA announced today on Capitol Hill that it will provide the COTS program with $150 million of the $400 million for human exploration given to NASA under President Barack Obama’s stimulus plan.
According to industry insiders, about $80 million of the $150 million is specifically for a “crewed launch demo.” The rest was broken down into $42 million for a docking system to the international space station, $20 million for a cargo transportation demo and $8 million for miscellaneous aspects of the COTS program, including human rating.
The National Space Society’s 28th annual International Space Development Conference, ISDC 2009, is only a month away! We are pleased to announce that Will Whitehorn, President of Virgin Galatic, has been added to the program. Check out the full list of speakers and program grid.
REGISTER TODAY today for the citizen space conference of the year! www.isdc2009.org
Secondary Meal Registration is Now Available
The wait is over! Meal tickets for ISDC 2009 are on sale now at www.isdc2009.org. ISDC registration is a la carte. One low registration rate permits admission into all general sessions. Meals are purchased separately. Professional Rate Registration includes all meals.
Projected Keynote Speaker Schedule for Meals (subject to change):
Elon Musk, Co-founder of PayPal and Space Exploration Technologies
Richard Garriott, Sixth private citizen to conduct a space mission aboard the ISS
Janet Petro, Deputy Director, NASA Kennedy Space Center
Friday Gala Dinner:
Special Guests To Be Announced
Dr. Buzz Aldrin, Apollo 11 Astronaut; Founder, ShareSpace Foundation; NSS Governor
To Be Announced
Purchase your tickets now at www.isdc2009.org/secondary_registration before prices go up!
HAVE YOU RESERVED YOUR HOTEL ROOM?
Don’t forget to lock in your room at the luxurious Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate. RESERVE NOW! A limited number of rooms are still available at the special NSS room rate.
Surrounded by 36 holes of championship Orlando golf, the David Leadbetter Golf Academy, and 15 acres of recreation, this four-diamond resort is one of the nation’s premier golf, meeting and leisure retreats.
Reserve your piece of this luxury experience now!
Space Investment Summit Registration Still Available
ISDC is proud to again host the Space Investment Summit (SIS-6) on Wednesday, May 27. This exclusive one day event will address the connection between the existing hospitality industry and the emerging space tourism industry. Presentations will focus on the latest developments in the rapidly growing space tourism industry (vehicles, funding, destinations, timeframes, numbers of customers and more), as well as new cross-industry business opportunities.
Their are still a limited number of seats available to this exclusive event. Register now and get the latest information at www.isdc2009.org/sis
Brett Silcox Tim Bailey
Associate Director Chairman, ISDC 2009
National Space Society National Space Society
Don’t miss our reception and FIREWORKS on Thursday, May 28 exclusively for ISDC attendees. Register now!