Broadcast 1601 (Special Edition)

01 Aug 2011 Dr. Haym Benaroya
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Guest: Dr. Haym Benaroya. Topics: Aerospace & Mechanical engineering studies, lunar bases, parallel R&D needed along with lunar/Mars engineering. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, http://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed back Dr. Haym Benaroya to discuss the latest with lunar habitat engineering, mechanical & aerospace engineering students, the new civil & commercial space policy, and much more. I stared the interview by asking Dr. Benaroya if he had seen any changes in his students or enrollments given the confusion in our civil space policy. It was great and surprising to hear the positive information Dr. Benaroya shared with us during this part of the discussion. Later in this segment, I pushed our guest for best case scenarios for the timeline to be able to do human spaceflight to the Moon or Mars. As you will hear, Haym prefers the Moon first. In any event, best case all perfect scenario would be about ten years once we seriously start the program before we are ready to return to the Moon with a lunar habitat. His own personal assessment of how long it might take us to go back to the Moon and on to Mars was much longer. HE3 and fusion were briefly discussed along with ISRU. In the second segment, we talked about student projects both at the advanced graduate level as well as the undergraduate level. Our guest received several questions about the cost awareness of engineers. Dr. Benaroya talked quite a bit about engineers being required to study engineering economics and their design projects must have economic parameters in them that must be adhered to for the project. Our discussion then switched to space policy, commercial and private enterprise, the best role for NASA and our civil space policy. Among the many things our guest suggested was consistent and steady NASA funding and longer term NASA project approvals. Switching NASA projects every time a new president or congress comes in is destructive as is changing the NASA budget from year to year. Later, Haym was asked if in his opinion having time lines and destinations was important. He said that for students, they must know what the project is for, the constraints, and the deadline. He extrapolated from that to NASA supporting goals with timelines and destinations. As the show was nearing its end, Dr. Benaroya talked about the need for visionary leadership and the disconnect within our government & population regarding our assessment of the space value & worth compared to that outside our community. In talking about his book at the end of the show, he gave credit for the cover picture/design to Gary Kitmacher, a NASA engineer and artist. Don't miss this story. If you have a comment or question, post it on the blog URL. You can email Dr. Benaroya at benaroya@rci.rutgers.edu.

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