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Published:September 11th, 2009 16:25 EST
Moon vs. Mars vs. Money

Moon vs. Mars vs. Money

By Rob Roy


There are astronauts with their heads well past the clouds of earth -- now their heads are in Martian clouds. [How quickly they forget about helium-3.] They want us to forget about any practical uses to a moon colony and just launch a rocket to Mars.  Others don`t want us spending any money outside the US. [An astonishing number of congressional NASA bashers are the same weirdos who pushed for funding of an artist who dipped a crucifix in urine.  Other NASA bashers supported the Bridge to Nowhere.] 

Back to moon-and-Mars talk, a few snippets:

Will America Really Return to the Moon?

By Dale Huffman


http://newsblaze.com/story/20090910144133dale.nb/topstory.html

"Now we are planning the next generation of spaceflight, and there are arguments on the direction to follow there too ..." " ... further debate thrown in over how much we need to learn from colonization of the Moon, just a quarter million miles away, before we tackle year-long trips in weightless conditions on trips to Mars, which is never closer than 35 million miles away from the Earth ..."

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As I wrote before, until we master our own orbit, Mars can wait.  There are practical uses to the moon or a space elevator: 

Mars Can Wait -- Conquer our Own Orbit First
http://thesop.org/soda-cms/cms_articles.php?article=17475

Orbital solar collectors could provide us with clean energy and produce jobs that actually turn a profit. A trip to Mars? What does that produce?

If you want to fly to Mars, you need a moon station first. Why have a space ship resist the earth`s gravitational pull?  That is ludicrous when you can harvest building materials directly from space rock.  That same rock could also be building materials for orbital solar collectors [much more efficient that solar collectors under the earth`s atmosphere]. 

Here`s the real kicker -- there is a special new super fuel on the moon:  helium-3.  For the same weight as current rocket fuel, helium-3 packs a tremendous punch.

"Researchers and space enthusiasts see helium-3 as the perfect fuel source." By Julie Wakefield

http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/helium3_000630.html

"Scientists estimate there are about 1 million tons of helium 3 on the moon, enough to power the world for thousands of years. The equivalent of a single space shuttle load or roughly 25 tons could supply the entire United States` energy needs for a year, according to Apollo 17 astronaut and FTI researcher Harrison Schmitt." [snip]

China is already planning to colonize the moon and gain a helium-3 monopoly.  With our weak economy, the moon`s future is less bright for the US. Most likely, we will lose the helium-3, and that is likely the ultimate key to Mars.  Experts generally agree that you can`t get helium-3 anywhere on this planet. 

On the other hand, with the current political climate, we are getting deeper in debt filling pot holes.  We are losing momentum in the space race; that`s how it is.  So who will be selling us helium-3?  China, unless more people start using their brains.