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Broadcast 1252 (Special Edition)Listen to the show!
Aired on November 6th, 2009
Guest: Dr. Robert Zubrin
Guest: Dr. Robert Zubrin. Topics: Goals and vision for space program, Augustine Commission. Dr. Robert Zubrin returned for this Space Show program to provide us with his assessment of the Augustine Commission's report and to put in context his goals and vision for our space program. In our first segment, Dr. Zubrin said that the Augustine Commission failed by not presenting a plan of action . Our entire segment was devoted to this discussion as was much of our program. Heavy lift was brought up and he said we would go nowhere in space without it. This is an action packed segment, don't miss it. Our second segment continued regarding Augustine and he shared his experiences with us when he spoke before the Commission as well as what happened when Elon Musk of SpaceX spoke before them regarding a fixed cost offer for building a heavy lift vehicle. Also in this segment, Dr. Zubrin had some things to say about some in the NewSpace community as well as the objective of reducing the cost to space. Our guest responded to many listener questions including one about RX drugs in space, artificial gravity and how best to achieve it on a Mars mission, and more. He took questions about The Mars Society, its future plans, and its membership. The subject of a one way trip to Mars was brought up and you will want to hear what he had to say about this idea. In our third and final segment with Dr. Zubrin, we talked about the possibility of an asteroid mission as part of the goal of going to Mars. He again said that the Augustine Commission failed President Obama and the American people. In response to one of my questions, Dr. Zubrin said that the NASA people he has talked to would be elated with a goal of going to Mars by 2019. Listen to his comments on these important topics. Public private partnerships were discussed, foreign leaders and space programs were addressed, and the Mars Society TEMPO project was described. As Dr. Zubrin left the show, he again said the Commission dropped the ball and that we needed Presidential Leadership to have a meaningful and acceptable civil space program. In our fourth and final segment which was Open Lines to discuss Dr. Zubrin's interview, we received a phone call from Dr. Jurist who went into detail regarding the biomedical issues regarding humans to Mars or for long duration spaceflight/space settlement. While Dr. Jurist was in agreement with Dr. Zubrin's goals and vision, he sharply disagreed with Zubrin's comments on the human factors issues. Dr. Jurist went into some detail explaining the biomedical facts around bone loss, centrifuge and artificial gravity requirements, closed loop life support, radiation, and psychological problems. We also talked about the use of RX drugs in the space environment and much more. We compared our state of readiness and development regarding our efforts to go to the Moon with Apollo to where we are today for Mars and long duration human spaceflight. One thing for sure that both Jurist and I agreed upon what that if we don't set the goal for Mars or something similar, we won't undertake the much needed research to address the human factors challenges. If you have questions or comments for Dr. Robert Zubrin, send them to me at Please Visit The Mars Society website,

About our guest...

Dr. Robert Zubrin, The Mars Society
Dr. Robert Zubrin is a noted author and the Founder of The Mars Society. The Mars Society, an international organization dedicated to furthering the exploration and settlement of Mars by both public and private means. Dr. Zubrin is also President of Pioneer Astronautics, an aerospace R&D company located in Lakewood, Colorado. Dr. Zubrin was formerly a Staff Engineer at Lockheed Martin Astronautics in Denver, he holds a Masters degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics and a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Washington. Zubrin is the inventor of several unique concepts for space propulsion and exploration, the author of over 100 published technical and non-technical papers in the field, and was a member of Lockheed Martin’s “scenario development team” charged with developing broad new strategies for space exploration. In that capacity, he was responsible for developing the "Mars Direct" mission plan, a strategy which by using Martian resources, allows a human Mars exploration program to be conducted at a cost 1/8th that previously estimated by NASA. Zubrin is known internationally as one of the most creative engineers working in the aerospace industry today, and he and his work have been subject of much favorable press coverage in The Economist, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, the London Times, The Washington Post, Fortune Magazine, Newsweek, Air and Space Smithsonian, Popular Science, Omni, Space News, and many other publications. He is the holder of two US Patents, and has two more pending. In addition to his technical publications, Dr. Zubrin is the author of "The Case for Mars: How We Shall Settle the Red Planet and Why We Must," published by Simon and Schuster’s Free Press Division in Oct. 1996, and “Entering Space: Creating a Spacefaring Civilization,” published by Tarcher Putnam in Aug. 1999, and “Mars on Earth” published by Tarcher Penguin in Sept. 2003. His book, “The Holy Land,” is a science fiction satire of the current situation in the Middle East. Dr. Zubrin has also written a play about Benedict Arnold. His latest book, "How To Live On Mars: A Trusty Guidebook To Surviving And Thriving On The Red Planet," is a must read.

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