[extropy-chat] SPACE: Back to the Moon (?)

Mike Lorrey mlorrey at yahoo.com
Thu Oct 30 22:28:06 UTC 2003

--- JAY DUGGER <duggerj1 at charter.net> wrote:
> On Thu, 30 Oct 2003 07:48:19 -0600
>   "Greg Burch" <gregburch at gregburch.net> wrote:
> >The design and construction of the various 
> >elements of the
> >ISS could be turned to building modular "hab modules" and 
> >other components
> >of a reusable translunar vehicle and a surface base. 
> I don't know if reuse could happen so easily. Lunar 
> gravity shouldn't pose a problem, but what about radiation 
> exposure during transit and then on Luna? Burying the 
> modules in the regolith once they arrive seems the easiest 
> way to shield them, but how much regolith do you need and 
> can the modules take it over the long term? Remember once 
> you bury them,  repairing the modules gets harder. How do 
> you patch a leak from the inside only? One could do it, it 
> just takes more effort.

Firstly, regolith is dirt/sand in consistency, not rock. You apply it
with something like a snowblower, and you get it off with the same plus
a broom. (Lunar Sanitation Engineers Guild Local 001 Trainee Manual,
Care of Antique Lunar Modules for Idiots).

Secondly, leaks occur in space modules due to micrometeorite impacts,
primarily, along with radiation induced metal fatigue, both of which
regolith will mitigate.

Thirdly, since the pressure is on the inside and vacuum is on the
outside, the proper place to fix any leak is on the inside.

Radiation during lunar transit is not the sort of radiation that leaves
lasting harmful isotopes to any degree. It's cosmic rays and so forth,
photons, not neutron bombardment. Modules would not be transitted while
manned, most likely. Furthermore, there is no reason why transit cannot
occur in the earth's EM field shadow.

> If 
> >my physics isn't
> >too off, even the ISS's cockeyed orbital inclination 
> >wouldn't be too much
> >of a handicap, since the cross-inclination vectoring 
> >could be leveraged
> >during translunar trajectory insertion so that the 
> >missions originating
> >at the ISS could still get into a lunar-equatorial orbit 
> >without too much
> >delta-vee.  Is this latter conjecture on my part true?
> I can't help here. Where's Nick Szabo when you need him?

Actually, considering that the optimum place to land is near the lunar
south pole, where there is a site with near perpetual sunlight and
local suspected water deposits in dark craters, having high orbital
inclination is no big deal. You want to wind up in a polar orbit around
the moon when you get there to make a descent, but hohmann S transfer
orbits do not require that both ends be coplanar.

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