Monthly Archives: December 2009

Latest Masten Update

Dave just wrote the latest Masten Update over on our MSS Project Blog.  The update goes over some of our plans for the new year.  Hopefully I’ll have something more to talk about soon.

Posted in Administrivia, MSS | Leave a comment

Why Not Just Fund the Program of Record?

Amid all the recent discussion of the Augustine Committee’s results, Mark Whittington asks a question that a lot of people in Congress seem to be asking: “Why not just pay for the current program since any new program is going … Continue reading

Posted in Commercial Space, COTS, ESAS, International Space Collaboration, Lunar Commerce, Lunar Exploration and Development, NASA, NEOs, Politics, Space Development, Space Policy | 31 Comments

Electrodynamic Compound Tether

guest blogger john hare A variant on the compound tether is the electrodynamic tether with rotovator. In this one a long electrodynamic tether has solar panels and other counterweights high enough to get the center of mass to a 135 … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Ramjet Problems

guest blogger john hare Ramjets come up just about every time someone takes a fresh look at space launch. It seems such an obvious approach that very few of us have skipped looking into them. The trade studies that have … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 30 Comments

Compound Tethers

guest blogger john hare This is not part of Kirk’s series on tethers.  Unlike his professional tether work that just needs  funding and hardware development, this is a concept that may have serious flaws that make it yet another hare … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 17 Comments

Good News for Centennial Challenges?

Dave pointed out to me earlier today that it looks like Centennial Challenges is finally going to get more funding this year (see http://docs.house.gov/rules/omni2010/hr3288cr_divb_jes.pdf on page 182 about 3/4 of the way to the bottom). The new amount is the … Continue reading

Posted in NASA | 6 Comments

MXER Tether Intro #1: Simple Untapered Tethers

So I’ve started out telling you that momentum-exchange tethers are great. Why? you might ask. Well, because a spinning momentum-exchange tether is capable of transferring a fair fraction of the orbital energy and angular momentum in its orbit to a … Continue reading

Posted in Space Tethers, Space Transportation, Technology | Leave a comment

Launch Escape

guest blogger john hare There is an increasing discussion of launch escape systems in the last few months. Most of them seem to focus on developing some sort of high acceleration tower to yank the capsule free in event of … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 34 Comments

Cagejet Again

guest blogger john hare I received a disturbing email today. John Bossard at http://plasmawind.typepad.com critiqued my cagejet idea at my request. I have been down for various reasons for the past month or so and mentioned that the criticism had disturbed me … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 15 Comments

Momentum Exchange Tethers — An Introduction

Anyone who’s interested in going to the Moon ought to take a serious look at the technology of momentum-exchange tethers. My own interest began back in 1998, when as a summer intern on the X-33 program at Lockheed Martin Skunk … Continue reading

Posted in Space Tethers, Space Transportation, Technology | 10 Comments