Broadcast 3066 Open Lines

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Guest:  Open Lines with Dr. David Livingston;  Topics:  Space Show policy, blog, theory vs. hypothesis, Falcon Heavy, ISS, SLS costs, Supernova, XE 129, Brandenburg, space news & more.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding specific Space Show programs & guest(s) to the Space Show blog which is part of archived program on our website,   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. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See   

Welcome to our 2 hour 1 minute Open Lines program without a break.  I opened our program with a few announcements and comments regarding The Space Show blog, the Brandenburg Xe129 story, general Space Show blog courtesy comments and suggestions, then we went to the phone lines.  The first call was from Dr. Jurist in Billings.  He suggested that Brandenburg had a hypothesis, not a theory which was the word I used in my opening statement.  I asked John to explain the difference between an hypothesis and theory.  John also commented on the very cold and snowy weather in the Billings area and how hard it was to take care of getting hay to his cattle.  We compared the Montana harsh winter conditions to living on the surface of Mars.  John then pointed out that the idea of point to point transportation as suggested by Elon re the BFR was a nonstarter in his mind.  He told us why, using the FedEx transportation model, transportation costs from the shipper to the destinations, BFR capable spaceports and landing sites plus more.  Don't miss all of what he said on this topic as a way of analysis of point to point for the BFR. 

We took an email question for John from Joshua in Santa Fe. Joshua asked Dr. Jurist for an explanation of the higher ratios on Xe 129 on Mars and how did the higher ratios get there.  John talked about a supernova which we do not think happened on Mars, plus Xe129 as a byproduct of atmospheric hydrogen bomb testing on Earth which Brandenburg extrapolated to Mars for his hypothesis.  Other possible ways of Xe 129 getting on Mars in higher ratios than other isotopes were not known but as John said, he would like to see plausible and factual explanations put forth.  John also said the Brandenburg hypothesis was boosted by the location of thorium and other specific related deposits at different locations on the Martian surface.  John then mentioned rocket fuels and suggested methane was a good propellant and why.

Before the next call came in, I mentioned the upcoming return on March 12 of Dr. Jeff Bell to the program. I read Jeff's suggested discussion topics.  We then took a call from Marshall who first mentioned that Brandenburg was a paradox, that there were not good answers and that he thought such discussions were fun.  He then said the FH was a paradigm shift and started talking about post ISS plans 2024 and beyond.  He talked about the cost and design of a private 1 g space station in equatorial LEO.  Don't miss what he said about this, including his suggested costs and it being a DARPA project.  Let us know what you think by commenting on it on the blog.  I asked Marshall to post some of his data on our blog and I hope he does that.

Terry called from Texas to discuss the NASA HSF budget.  He said it was too small and that ISS and SLS were consuming most of the resources, leaving very little for anything else.  He wanted to see SLS cancelled at some point.  Don't miss his important discussion.  Terry got an email from Jack in Sacramento re the SLS so don't miss that exchange.

Michael Listner called to tell us that Maine was considering developing a spaceport.  He said he would be getting more info on that would keep us posted.  Next, we took a call from Freemont John regarding a new small rocket company, Astra Rocket, being developed in Alameda (across the Bay from San Francisco).  He also mentioned an article in Parabolic Arc about the formation of a new Bigelow Space Operations Company.  He said we would learn more about that on Tuesday.  John told us about a Netflix movie that he thought was good, "Mission Control."

Dr. Doug called to mentioned what Dr. Mike Griffin once said regarding the ideal fuel depot being the empty upper stage of a rocket.  Doug had much to say about this concept and why he thought it was a good idea.  Doug brought up a recent Zubrin article on FH being significant for a Mars mission.  I told Doug and everyone that Dr. Zubrin was returning to TSS on Tuesday evening, March 13.  Doug then had much to say about the proposal for jockey size people on a refueled FH in competition to SLS.  For sure do not miss what Doug had to say regarding this issue. 

John from Ft. Worth called to offer his thoughts on Brandenburg.  He mentioned the GEM work done by Brandenburg and I mentioned John's claim of having accurately computed Big G (the gravity constant).  Issues about FH and SLS payloads came up with emails from Doug and others.  I did not know if Orion or an SLS payload could go on a FH but later Doug sent in a note with FH fairing and payload sizes and more.  I read Doug's email on air.  If you know anything about SLS payloads and Orion on a FH, please post it on the blog.

In addition to the calls summarized above, we fielded several emails from Matt in Germany which I read on air, plus Doug sent in several emails before and after he called.  I mentioned other emailers in the above summary.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS for this program.  You can reach any of the callers or those sending emails through me.




Open Lines - The topics you want to talk about. First Time callers welcome

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18 Feb 2018 Dr. David Livingston
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