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The Engineer
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SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/19/2018 8:30 AM

Yesterday SpaceX deployed NASA's Tess into high earth orbit and recovered the first stage of the Falcon 9 that launched it. That was the 8th launch this year for SpaceX (one of which was a Falcon Heavy launch). SpaceX is averaging a launch every two weeks. To put that in context, that is how many launches SpaceX had in all of 2016. That was the 24th Falcon 9 First Stage recovered by SpaceX. I couldn't believe it when I read it. It seems like yesterday they recovered their first one.

SpaceX has 23 launches scheduled for this year including its first manned mission aboard a Dragon 2 capsule to the ISS. If that goes without a hitch, and the Falcon Heavy continues to progress, Elon Musks of a colony on Mars starts to actually seem possible.

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#1

Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/19/2018 11:50 AM

The only thing that concerns me, is statistics. Especially with the successful rocket launches when its going to be manned missions.

Sure practice makes perfect,... but space travel....

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/19/2018 1:17 PM

One of the more interesting things I've read him say in an interview is the colonization of Mars will likely claim many lives. It will be a dangerous venture and mistakes are gonna happen. In his mind, I think it's a lot like the colonization of North America in the 1600s.

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#3
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/19/2018 1:19 PM

Trying not to be morbid, but that's refreshing. Its no different that astronauts understanding of the Apollo missions.

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#4
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/19/2018 3:07 PM

No, I agree. Obviously, neither of us wants anybody to die, but if we sit around till there is zero risk it will never happen. It's best that they just do the best they can to make it as safe as possible and then just go for it. It won't happen otherwise.

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#5
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/19/2018 11:11 PM

Hopefully, one thing will be different. That is that they shouldn't have any indigenous folk trying to kill them.

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#7
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 5:26 AM

History is so convoluted. Savage misconception

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#9
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 7:15 AM

Oh? How so?

Hooker

PS - please note that I grew up mostly about 30 miles from the Jamestown Colony and graduated from a high school called Kecoughtan(Kikotan).

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#15
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/25/2018 12:19 AM

I Just finished reading this book.. (yes in paper form)

Sure it maaaay not have reliable information, but It's not the only source of information pertaining to the way we took land from otherwise peaceful indigenous people.

Claiming that North America was only inhabited by a few loathsome savages and had no real pre-colonial history made hostile takeover of the land (and destruction of history) a little more PC.

If a few indians were ready to kick ass? who can blame them?

The book was a gift to me, but would make an entertaining read for any history buff.

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#16
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/25/2018 7:46 AM

"we took land". Please don't say we. The vast majority of Americans, or their ascendants, weren't here during colonial times, including my family.

And I know the colonists weren't innocent. Many of them perceived the indigenous folk as savages that needed civilizing or removal. Or that the indigenous were peaceful, lotus eating pacifists, either. They were quite brutal on their own. Powhatan did not build his empire by handing out sweets.

I'm just saying that we need to acknowledge that those times were different and we need to keep balance in the discussion.

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#17
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/25/2018 3:23 PM

We you they.. Obviously we weren't there and didn't have anything to do with it. We are however the outcome. hooray for us.

but... Hooker - "At least we won't have to listen to certain people tell us how evil we were for taking over the property."

...So yes.. all true..

However, the colonists weren't exactly the first visitors to this strange land.

Many had come before, either passing through or settling amongst the natives.

Native oral histories have recorded many new people coming from the oceans over thousands of years. For the most part there was a great deal of reverence for these exchanges and integrations of culture. Certainly there is always the chance for violent reaction between strangers from a strange land.. The vikings made a business model out of it when farming alone became rather boorish. Fortunately that's behind us.. Or is is?

I do acknowledge those time were different... and it doesn't matter to me whether or not the natives were peaceful lotus eating pacifist or not.

I'm just suggesting acknowledgement that everything we were taught might not be accurate either. Which does keep balance in the OT discussion.

The truth is not always tangible, but the search for it can yield valuable knowledge.

If I struck a nerve with you. I apologize. I was aiming my arrow at the funny bone.

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#18
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/25/2018 4:16 PM

Yup, I try my best to keep up with developing history as it is revealed. Some of the Viking and other visitor's (lately revelations about the Scot's) adventures to North America are quite fascinating.

And, yes, a lot of the Virginia Colonial history I was taught as a kid was quite obviously fairy tales written by the conquerors.

PS - You missed the nerves. However, having been a real life target it's usually impossible to tell if someone is aiming at a specific body part or will be happy just maiming randomly. It's equally difficult with online communications.

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#11
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 12:40 PM

True, but they won't have any indigenous folk trying to help them either.

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#12
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 12:54 PM

Agreed, but if I was going I'd prefer that alternative. At least we won't have to listen to certain people tell us how evil we were for taking over the property.

Hooker

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#13
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 1:22 PM

Or the disease's we'll be bringing with us,... or being introduced to.... well,... ok,... just what we'll be bringing with us.

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#14
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 1:55 PM

NASA is way ahead of ya.

Click Here

Hooker

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#19
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/26/2018 1:51 PM

Let's hope not!

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#20
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/26/2018 2:06 PM

Oh, Geez, I forgot about Marvin. One of my childhood heroes.

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#6

Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/19/2018 11:19 PM

I'm thinking that before we try to create a colony on Mars, we need to develop a sustainable colony in space. It should have all the obvious things that everyone already is familiar with, like real life support, growing all its own food, recycles everything, has medical treatment, and can repair minor damage by itself. It would have to be big enough for a few hundred people, and spinning to create good artificial gravity to maintain health, and be modular so damage to one module doesn't destroy the whole thing.

This next part is inspired by the movie, The Martian. When we are confident in the technology, we build a few dozen of these colonies and put them into elliptical orbits around the sun in such a way that they pass by both Earth and Mars periodically. When they pass Earth, they don't slow down, but are refueled, restocked, repaired, upgraded, and the crew replaced if need be. When they pass Mars, likewise they don't slow down, but they send supplies and crew to the surface, and pick up whatever crew will be returning to Earth. Fortunately the Earth pass is the one that requires a lot of fuel to get the supplies up there and matching orbits with the colony, and the Mars pass only has to land it on the planet.

It takes a lot less fuel to nudge a colony into a different orbit than to slow it down to orbit either Earth or Mars and then speed it up to send it on its way. If there are a few dozen of these colonies, there will be one passing Mars or Earth quite frequently, so that if a rescue is needed, they don't have to wait years for a pickup. It's like establishing a bus line between the planets. If someone is really sick, they catch the next bus home.

The hard part would be restocking the colony as it passes Earth or picking up passengers when it passes Mars, but since it is in an orbit around the sun, it wouldn't actually be passing the planets that quickly. It would just be in an elliptical orbit that had its perigee at Earth's orbit and apogee at Mars' orbit, and it would hit both perigee and apogee in less than a Martian year. I'm not sure how to manage it so that it hits its apogee when it passes Mars, and its perigee when it passes Earth, but it can adjust its orbit gravitationally whenever it passes one of them.

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#8
In reply to #6

Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 6:45 AM

I'm thinking that before we try to create a colony on Mars, we need to develop a sustainable colony in space.

we've been doing that with the ISS, to see what problems we need to solve for the journey.

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#10
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Re: SpaceX Just Recovered its 24th Falcon 9 First Stage

04/20/2018 12:39 PM

I love the ISS, and it is a great accomplishment. It has given us some idea of the problems we need to solve, but it is not a colony in any sense. It depends entirely on Earth for almost everything. The only thing is can reliably produce for itself is energy from the solar panels. It is more like an outpost sent up to check out the hostile territory above the atmosphere.

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