Broadcast 1986 (Special Edition)

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Guest: Robert (Bob) Sackheim. Topics: Commercial space, propulsion, U.S. space policy & more. Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. We welcomed Robert Sackheim to the program to discuss NASA, commercial space, the current state of rocket propulsion and advancements in the field. During our first segment of this 1 hour 47 minute discussion, Mr. Sackheim talked about his background and experience at TRW, NASA MSFC, and his current consulting. I asked him several questions about the current state of rocket propulsion. Bob had much to say about this, focusing on chemical rocket propulsion, satellite propulsion, electric propulsion, and the need for nuclear propulsion. He talked about booster rockets, various rocket stages and their propulsion, rocket engines, and even SRBs. Several questions came in asking him if we had the current technology for HSF to Mars or even the Inspiration Mars flyby mission talked about so much in the recent press. Listeners wanted to know if our current levels of propulsion were up to the task. After a rather thorough propulsion discussions, Bob turned to commercial space, lowering total space mission costs, regulatory policy, and commercial spaceports. He also talked about budget issues and raised the question a few times as to why ten NASA centers were needed given their often overlapping, competitive, and duplicate work. In our second segment, commercial space took the lead with a discussion on public/private partnerships & the belief that Americans can do anything if we set our mind to it, including space travel. Of course here the problem as we know lies in leadership and today it appears that leadership in space & other areas is sparse at best. Bob then focused on geo satellites and the increasing development and capabilities applicable to cubesats. HSF came up for discussion as did the robotic missions. You might be surprised by what our guest had to say about HSF. Other issues in this segment included the lunar space elevator, the congressional and NASA track record in canceling ongoing projects & taking lessons from history, SSP, & ways to reform & move NASA forward. Bob spoke about evolving toward the old NACA model. I asked about the impact of space advocacy from his perspective given his leadership experience and past positions in leading organizations and projects. We also asked him about space tourism and hybrid rocket engines. He had much to say about hybrids, don't miss the discussion. Bob talked about the Falcon rockets, testing including static fire tests, and SRBs as related to the Constellation project and safety. Toward the end, our guest was asked about NewSpace, fuel depots, & cryo transfer. For closing comments, he talked about commercial space being the way to go & the path to our space future. Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog. You can reach Mr. Sackheim through me at



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01 Apr 2013 Robert Sackheim
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