All posts by Robert Smith

New G-Lab Program pages

“She had her fourth birthday last week,” Halvorsen answered proudly. “Children grow fast in this low gravity. But they don’t age so quickly – they’ll live longer than we do.”

Floyd stared in fascination at the self-assured little lady, noting the graceful carriage and the unusually delicate bone structure. “It’s nice to meet you again Diana,” he said. Then something – perhaps sheer curiosity, perhaps politeness – impelled him to add: “Would you like to go to Earth?”

Her eyes widened with astonishment; then she shook her head.

“It’s a nasty place; you hurt yourself when you fall down. Besides there are too many people.”

So here, Floyd told himself, is the first generation of the Spaceborn; there would be more of them in the years to come. Though there was sadness in this thought, there was also a great hope. When Earth was tamed and tranquil, and perhaps a little tired, there would still be scope for those who loved freedom, for the tough pioneers, the restless adventurers. But their tools would not be ax and gun and canoe and wagon; they would be nuclear power plant and plasma drive and hydroponic farm. The time was fast approaching when Earth, like all mothers, must say farewell to her children.”

- 2001, Chapter 10 “Clavius Base”

There is absolutely no proof that a gravity lower than Earth’s would do no more than alter bone structure making humans elegantly delicate and tall.

There is absolutely no proof that living in a lower gravity would make for longer lives.

Both ideas have been common in even the best science fiction forever, but there is no proof that either would actually be the case.

2001 is a great story, and above all Clarke’s Dr. Floyd paraphrasing Tsiolkovsky still has absolute merit; the Spaceborn will be coming eventually. It sure would be nice, though, if some space agency or company that says that it wants to help Humans live on planets with low gravities would start doing some actual research on generations of vertebrates before the first Spaceborn is on its inevitable way.

The cost to their entire program after just one child is born not quite right would likely be far, far higher than the cost of putting a multi-G test habitat in operation as early as possible.

This is the fundamental reason for SSI’s G-Lab Project.

For more information, please see the growing collection of resources on the new SSI G-Lab Program page.

New on the SSI YouTube Channel: President Gary at the SVSC

SSI President Gary Hudson
SSI President Gary Hudson

Gravity: The Key to Life and Propulsion on The High Frontier.  Enabling Permanent Human Settlement On The High Frontier.

February 27th 2017 Space Studies Institute President Gary C Hudson spoke at the Silicon Valley Space Center/AIAA Tech Talk meeting in Santa Clara, California about two important SSI programs: G-Lab, the free flying reduced gravity spinner co-orbited with ISS and EPI, supporting fundamental R&D for true “Space Drives.”

It was a fascinating night and we hope that all SSI Associates will make the time to enjoy this video.

Many thanks to Dr. Sean Casey and Rick Kwan of the Silicon Valley Space Center, the AIAA-SF and the Santa Clara Hacker Dojo.

From the SSI Yahoo Group: A Paper from Al Globus on ELEO Settlement

Al Globus, Senior Research Engineer for San Jose University at NASA Ames and editor-in-chief of the NSS Space Settlement Journal posted this very interesting note at the Space Studies Institute Yahoo Group:

“The latest version of this Equatorial Low Earth Orbit (ELEO) settlement paper is in Space Review this week. They did a great job of formatting and presenting the paper. The biggest change from earlier versions is the SpaceX Interplanetary Transportation System (ITS) announced by Elon Musk which has major implications for ELEO settlement.

Specifically, the ITS is a two leg system to transport people and supplies from Earth to Mars. The first leg is Earth to Low Earth Orbit and the target costs are just about exactly what ELEO settlement needs. The ITS engine is in the late stages of development aimed at operational use in the Falcon 9 and Heavy. A large composite tank has also been fabricated for test. This is no mere paper study.”

SSI Associates should make time to read this paper, it is fascinating: http://www.thespacereview.com/article/3181/1

2016 Breakthrough Propulsion Workshop Proceedings

Breakthrough Propulsion Workshop 2016 participants
Breakthrough Propulsion Workshop 2016 participants

At long last, the Proceedings of the first Estes Park Advanced Propulsion Workshop, sponsored by SSI, are ready for general release.  The free PDF is downloadable by clicking on the link below.

Dedicated to Jim Woodward on the occasion of his 75th birthday, the editors – Lance Williams and Heidi Fearn – have spent countless hours preparing the volume, collecting contributors’ papers, or summarizing talks where no papers were available.  SSI and the advanced propulsion community owes them thanks for their tireless efforts.

Besides the main body of the work, they report on the tone and tenor of the gathering, from impromptu discussions that took place during and after talks and at the reception that Jim Woodward’s neighbors Wade and Lanier Whilden graciously hosted for attendees.  Several unscheduled and entertaining evening talks on unconventional topics have also been summarized.

We hope you will find the main body of the technical papers worth reading and that the ideas and results presented therein will stimulate even more attention and experimentation into this controversial but important area of research.

Gary C Hudson
President
Space Studies Institute

For your free PDF copy of the Workshop proceedings, click this link:
Estes Park Workshop Proceedings
(this file is 14MB with 337 pages and may take a while to fully download)

a rainbow joined us on the final day
a rainbow joined us on the final day

 


For more information on the SSI Exotic Propulsion Initiative, click here.
For the full Workshop videos, visit the SSI YouTube Channel or visit this page on SSI.org