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Moon landings?


keef_uk
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The other day I posted a trailer for the new Apollo 18 film which has the strap line 'The real reason we didnt go back to the moon' Now obviously this is just nonsence, but it got me thinking WHY have we not gone back?

We went in the 60s with less computing power then what you have currently in front of you and I dont think the dynamics of space flight would have changed so why dont we go back?

There is constant talk about missions to Mars etc. but it would easier (and cheaper) to continue to explore our own moon first. Its not like its a case of done that and got the T-shirt.

I'm not a conspiriacy nut with this being a prelude to some 'we never really went' rubbish just I would love to see us go back :glasses1:

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The Apollo moon landings happened because the American government and people at the time had the political will and were prepared to spend the money to get there before the USSR. It was fuelled by the cold war, the USA was in total shock after the Russians were the first to put sputnik and a human into orbit.

No such political will exists today, if it did we would have been to Mars by now.

Edited by reddoss
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The bottom line is politics.

The only reason the US went to the moon was because of the race with Russia. Science was just tagged on.

It's all politics.

As for Mars...the possibility of mineral etc etc means it's a place industry could benefit from. So if we go it will likely be in the search of industry materials and science will, again, be tagged on. "Search for life", "search for water evidence" etc.

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I think we must accept that the driving force behind the Apollo missions was the Cold War. JFK set a target he believed the US could achieve and the Soviet Union could not in the time frame allocated. The Russians did have their own Lunar booster but were unable to develop it fully before the Americans got there and abandoned the idea as there was no status in coming second in a very expensive programme.

The public soon got bored with the Moon after the first few missions and so the impetus was lost. I have my doubts that the Obama proposal to go to an asteroid and possibly Mars will come to anything. Lunar does deserve more exploration, but in the present economic and political climate I think it is very much on the back burner so far as the US is concerned. The Chinese may however feel differently and if a space race then ensues between Beijing and Delhi maybe we will go back to the moon. Only time will tell.

Brinders

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US politics is the short answer. Those with influence continue to find faster easier profit from war than any potential exploitation of Selene. The sting to US pride caused by the Sputnik shock has now healed.. the USSR is no more.

The current "small government" fervour in the US (and elsewhere Conservative politics holds sway) sees NASA as a "waste".. they see Science and Education as 'Socialist' and unnecessary.. their push for the privatisation of "Space" sees no further than space-tourism.

In time, China's rise might change all this.

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if a space race then ensues between Beijing and Delhi maybe we will go back to the moon.

Brinders

This good be good news, Peking duck and lamb vindaloo will already be available on the sea of tranquillity by the time the British get there :glasses1:

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Politics and money are the reasons why they didn't go back.

Why they did go was a little more complicated. They had the Russians well and truly beaten in the space race by the middle of Gemini. They could have slowed down the pace and still would have won easily. In fact, it is highly likely that the Russians would never have made it. After Korolov died of cancer, the Russians lost their rocket genius. The N1 which was partly designed by his replacement was flawed, and probably would never have made it to the Moon.

The US had, perversely, IMHO, Kennedy's assassination to drive them on, with Kennedy's promise to land a man on the Moon by the end of the decade. If Kennedy had survived, it is very possible that the cost and political pressure would have prompted him to slow down the pace?

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It's inconceivable that the Moon won't be part of future plans of space faring nations.

Whether it's for Lunar Scientific, or Mars Exploration staging purposes, will be decided eventually, but not soon I guess.

I would not like to see a politically motivated race to get back there, whatever the reason might be for doing so.

I think any political reasons should give way to a cooperative effort.

A much better scenario altogether. The ISS is testament to that.

Ron.

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If "we" do want to exploit the asteroids and Mars for raw materials though, it could make a lot of sense to go back to the moon to build a base there.

Personally I've been wishing for a space elevator ever since I first read "Fountains of Paradise" in my early teens.

James

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Whilst on the subject of moon and mars, slightly side tracked but here goes...

How long would a radio communication take to travel to earth from the moon and from mars to earth?

Edited by Pakmoto
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At the speed of light it takes just under 1.5 seconds to reach the moon. So a round trip of 3 seconds - which makes two way conversations annoying but quite doable!

Because of the difference in orbits Mars can be quite close or a very long way away!

At it's closest it is around 33.9million miles from earth - that's a one way trip of 3 minutes.

At it's furthest it is around 249 million miles away - so that's a one way wait of 22 minutes.

HTH

Ant

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The Chinese will go for sure. I hope to see men on the moon again in my lifetime. It will be a great staging post one day to get to other worlds. Once we learn to mine te moon and asteroids for raw materials, the Earth will be a cleaner, better place.

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