[ RadSafe ] Mission to Mars

Brennan, Mike (DOH) Mike.Brennan at DOH.WA.GOV
Wed Jun 29 17:33:56 CDT 2011

The best first step towards a manned mission to Mars would be the
development of a space elevator, which is probably a decade of so from
having all the pieces necessary.  

Right now the cost per kilo of getting things out of the gravity well is
too high to allow for anything but a barest bones trip; more PR than
science.  Until the price comes down a lot getting the propulsion plant,
fuel/reaction mass, supplies, and shielding is prohibitive.  

Personally, I would like to see a lot more robotic missions, to Mars,
the Moon, and Jupiter.  I think we have reached a point where the
capabilities of unmanned craft are so high that space travel will have
to be almost free before the trade-off is in favor of manned missions. 

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu
[mailto:radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu] On Behalf Of
JPreisig at aol.com
Sent: Wednesday, June 29, 2011 2:25 PM
To: radsafe at health.phys.iit.edu
Subject: Re: [ RadSafe ] Mission to Mars

Hello Again,
      This is from:   _jpreisig at aol.com_ (mailto:jpreisig at aol.com)    .
      Dr. Raabe is probably right in that early  missions to Mars will
chemically propelled.
      Then a less uptight country like China will  beat us to Mars (a ma
nned mission) using a nuclear
propelled spacecraft, in tandem with a chemically propelled liftoff from

Earth.  One could assemble the
reactor spaceship from parts sent to the international space station.   
Then launch that bad boy
      Once the shuttle program ends, NASA  scientists and engineers will

tire of twiddling their thumbs, and
will start to get going on a nuclear propelled spacecraft, as suggested
the professor from 
      Glory be, I had forgotten about fast neutron  reactors.  Fast 
neutrons and enriched Uranium or
Plutonium could lead to a one way Mars travel time of less than 2  
months???!!!!  Whoa.
Star trek, here we come.
      I am not too familiar with what happened  with the fire (and 
plutonium) at Rocky Flats.
I think remediation there went on for quite some time.  Hope the fire  
doesn't affect Los Alamos.
Did terrorists set these fires???
      Goodness, Americium on US car air  filters???  (Americium in my
or Grape Nuts
breakfast cereal).  My heavens, isn't Americium considerably heavier
air?  Does it actually
get to the USA from Japan or is it here from bomb testing way back
      NaI detectors for gamma spectrometry ---  hmmmm, only if there is
Ge detector around????
     Nice internal dosimetry job at Brookhaven for  someone right now.
their web site.
      Be good.  Regards,   Joseph  R. (Joe) Preisig, PhD
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