The final frontier...needs more funding.

Discussion in 'Economics' started by peilthetraveler, Jul 7, 2005.

  1. With all this talk about running out of oil and the future of technology and such, i have to wonder why we are putting hardly any money into building interstellar space craft. I know, some of you are like whoa thats a pipe dream, we will never reach another star. But most people 100 years ago didnt think people would fly around in planes today, much less walk on the moon or send probes to mars. But anyway here is my pet peeve. The Government gives NASA over 16 billion a year in much of that goes to researching propulsion technology? I'll tell you....a whooping 133 million...less than 1% of NASAs total budget. If we put more money into our propultion technology we could get to jupiter, uranus or neptune sooner. Why do we want to go there you ask? Helium-3. Ah i bet you never heard of it...Well Helium-3 is virtually non-existant on earth...but with it you can use it for an electrical power plant that is very clean and cheaper than coal, oil or whatever....well technically its not cheaper now only because we dont have the technology to go get it. If current annual global industrial energy consumption is 10,000 GWyear then you only need 5400 tons of helium-3 in a fusion reactor..thats for the whole planet. Just in the US alone in 2004 we used over 1 billion tons of coal in electric powerplants and coal is a major cause of polution. There are also tons of asteroids that could be mined for the resources. They estimate that an asteroid 1 mile x 1 milex x 1mile has minerals that would be worth 1 TRILLION dollars. If we increase our technology in propulsion it would be alot cheaper militarily speaking. Imagine flying a ship halfway around the world in 5 minutes at a cost of 50 cents. Could deploy alot of troops really fast that way...could even send them home every night to be with their families. But for some reason NASA is spending BILLIONS of that money on things like earth science, search for origins, biological and physical research, human and robotic technology. And 6 billion alone is going to operations....Overpaid scientist. I bet we could cut the operations to 1 billion a year (getting rid of everyone but the research scientists and cut every other program of NASAs and put 15 billion into propulsion, the worlds energy would be at our control and not OPECs in about 3 years. With that much extra funding, our advancement could be over 100 times faster than it is now. Imagine 300 years worth of propulsion technology by 2009. Many people submit propulsion ideas to NASA every year...most of the time they dont even look at it if it says the word "warp drive, faster than light, or gravity drive." in the title page. This would actually be an amazing opportunity for someone with a few billion to throw out there to start their own propulsion research company. Once you have the propulsion technology, the sky's the limit...or maybe i should say...the universe is the limit. :)
  2. NASA already has propulsion adn power supply systms that can get us to other parts of the solar system much faster adn more effeciently than currently. However they all require nuclear energy sources which are a politically infeasible solution. In fact if it were not for politics the return on 16 bilion would be much more than is currently is. The ISS would have been completed a long time ago with much more functionality, new crew vehicles would have already been developed, we woldl have already returned to the moon, adn perhaps already sent humas to Mars. However, NASA is a political nightmare with politicians using NASA as a toy to play with for their purposes instead of a tool to furhter the nations sceintific exploration of aerospace and space.
  3. jem


    peil the traveller -- is that the name of the the traveller in Star Trek the next generation.
  4. Actually Peil was my name back when i used to play everquest. Was addicted to it for 2 years...finally just quit it cold turkey but still use the name when i use email or anything that requires a user name. :)
  5. Uh right here, right now? This is dated 1979 and says it is "expected to be in production within two or three years". Sounds like it didnt work out...

    Spotlight (April 18, 1979)
    "A Law of Physics Repealed?"

    Reported in the Washington Star recently was the astounding news that the Solar Reactor Corp. of Miami has solved just about all of man's energy problems forever through a process even the inventor doesn't understand. The company says any amount of energy can be produced at virtually no cost and with no environmental problems. Although company spokesmen say they don't like the term, what they described at a recent news conference in Washington is a perpetual motion machine that produces more energy than it consumes, a process that seems to violate the generally accepted laws of physics. Apparently, hydrogen and chlorine are pumped into a container where, in the presence of oxygen, they are exposed to some source of energy -- perhaps artificial light, the sun, or low-level radiation from nuclear waste. The result is an ionized hydrochloric gas containing great amounts of energy which can then be recovered for use through a turbine or other means. it is kinetic energy, not heat energy, so the process is cool and easy to use. The tests have used artificial light because sunlight is too powerful and the people involved are scared about what might happen if it were used. The process was invented by Robert L. Scragg of West Virginia, and the company said it would not accept money from the public but is looking for private backers to raise the $5 million needed to create an operational prototype. They expect to be in production within two or three years.
  6. Hmmm, according to this: its not nearly as definite as you seem to imply (italics/bold mine):

  7. Hence the need to put more money into propulsion systems. You get a good powerful propulsion system like a fusion reactor and you can then go to the other planets pretty easily and get your helium-3. :)