Many folks would like to see us back on the Moon and developing its resources.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


August 20, 2009

Doc Mirelson
Headquarters, Washington


WASHINGTON -- The Review of U.S. Human Space Flight Plans Committee
determined the Aug. 24 contingency meeting announced in the Federal
Register is not required. The committee has no plans for any
additional public meetings.

For committee information, materials, presentations and biographies,

For information about NASA and agency activities, visit:


You still have ways of contacting the committee. - LRK -

At the rate we are going I may not see the USA on the Moon with humans
and probably a lot of you are in the same situation.
What about the kids and grand kids?

How many would elect to live at the South Pole here on Earth?
Not many, but they might like to work for companies that do science at
the Poles.

How many would like to live under the ocean permanently?
Probably not all that many, but would they like a job that uses the
resources of the ocean?

Some have said that NASA is just a job shop and all the employees want
is to protect their jobs.
I certainly found it interesting supporting the work that NASA was
doing at Ames and it paid my electric bill for ~20 years.

Some say we should go to the asteroids.
Whether that is with rockets and robots or with humans might be debated.
Just the same it would be rewarding to get paid to find ways to keep
asteroids from sneaking up on us unannounced and to find ways to use
them as a material resource.

or TinyURL for above -
NASA Struggles to Keep
Up With Asteroids

Updated: Wednesday, 12 Aug 2009, 3:42 PM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 12 Aug 2009, 3:42 PM EDT

* By SETH BORENSTEIN, AP Science Writer

WASHINGTON - NASA is charged with seeking out nearly all the asteroids
that threaten Earth but doesn't have the money to do the job, a
federal report says.

That's because even though Congress assigned the space agency this
mission four years ago, it never gave NASA money to build the
necessary telescopes, the new National Academy of Sciences report
says. Specifically, NASA has been ordered to spot 90 percent of the
potentially deadly rocks hurtling through space by 2020.

Wouldn't the kids like to play with model engines and then find out
they could be used to provide electricity for some base on another
moon or planet?

You don't need to go the the Moon to enjoy the opportunities it might
present to you, even if you are not one of the few that might go and
set up a base.
- LRK-

A Lunar Nuclear Reactor
Tests prove the feasibility of using nuclear reactors to provide
electricity on the moon and Mars.
By Brittany Sauser

"We are not building a system that needs hundreds of gigawatts of
power like those that produce electricity for our cities," says Don
Palac, the project manager at NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland,
OH. The system needs to be cheap, safe, and robust and "our recent
tests demonstrated that we can successfully build that," says Palac.

To generate electricity, the researchers used a liquid metal to
transfer the heat from the reactor to the Stirling engine, which uses
gas pressure to convert heat into the energy needed to generate
electricity. For the tests, the researchers used a non-nuclear heat
source. The liquid metal was a sodium potassium mixture that has been
used in the past to transfer heat from a reactor to a generator, says
Palac, but this is the first time this mixture has been used with a
Stirling engine.

"They are very efficient and robust, and we believe [it] can last for
eight years unattended," says Lee Mason, the principal investigator of
the project at Glenn. The system performed better than expected, Palac
says, generating 2.3 kilowatts of power at a steady pace.

Thanks for looking up with me.

Larry Kellogg

Web Site:
RSS link:
NASA Looks to Nuclear Reactors for Moon Base
Doug Messier
on August 18, 2009, at 9:35 pm
in Constellation, NASA, News and human spaceflight

A Lunar Nuclear Reactor
Technology Review

Researchers at NASA and the Department of Energy recently tested key
technologies for developing a nuclear fission reactor that could power
a human outpost on the moon or Mars. The tests prove that the agencies
could build a “safe, reliable, and efficient” system by 2020, the year
NASA plans to return humans to the moon.

A fission reactor works by splitting atoms and releasing energy in the
form of heat, which is converted into electricity. The idea for using
nuclear power in space dates back to the late 1950s, when they were
considered for providing propulsion through Project Orion. In the
1960s a series of compact, experimental space nuclear reactors were
developed by NASA under the Systems Nuclear Auxiliary Power program.
But public safety concerns and an international treaty banning nuclear
weapons in space stopped development.

Now nuclear power is being considered for lunar and Mars missions
because, unlike alternatives such as solar power, it can provide
constant energy, a necessity for human life-support systems,
recharging rovers, and mining for resources. Solar power systems would
also require the use of energy storage devices like batteries or fuel
cells, adding unwanted mass to the system. Solar power is further
limited because the moon is dark for up to 14 days at a time and has
deep craters that can obscure the sun. Mars is farther away from the
sun than either the Earth or the moon, so less solar power can be
harvested there.

Read Full story at:
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