[extropy-chat] MARS: Because it is hard

Mike Lorrey mlorrey at yahoo.com
Tue Apr 13 23:03:16 UTC 2004

--- Matus <matus at matus1976.com> wrote:
> Zubrin Mars Direct plan has pretty much won me over, does anyone here
> have any objections or counter arguments?  I would be interested in
> hearing some criticisms of his plan.

While the Zubrin plan works on a propulsion POV, it ignores the human
logistics and psych POV. People operating on the moon will already be
working in a 'spaceship' type bottled environment while still under
gravity. What are the effects of simply adapting to weightlessness vs
weightlessness and the isolation of ship life together?

Moreover, Zubrin is just counting from LEO, not from Earth's surface.
If we have a base on the moon (or in LEO) capable of responding quickly
to the needs of a ship in transit in trouble, this is much different
from having to ramp up something on Earth, and deal with the delta v of
 getting those assets into space. 

If, instead, you have reusable assets already used once in building a
moon base, they can be turned around much more easily and cheaply to
support work on Mars or on the way to Mars.

I agree that LEO to Mars is optimal. But that isn't reality. Earth-Mars
vs Moon-Mars is the proper comparison. You could compare LEO-Mars as
well, but we wouldn't have any resources in LEO beyond the ISS. The
moon would have all the equipment, people, and ships used to build the
base there, plus all the propulsion resources native to the Moon. There
are thus a lot of other factors to deal with besides just delta V.

Mike Lorrey
Chairman, Free Town Land Development
"Live Free or Die, Death is not the Worst of Evils."
                                       - Gen. John Stark
Sado-Mikeyism: http://mikeysoft.zblogger.com

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