Comments on the Route to Orbital Space Colonization
Comments on the Route to Orbital Space Colonization: (My message # 16. I have also put more than twenty messages on my other blog at http://colonizespace.blogspot.com )
by Michael Goodspaceguy Nelson, June 19, 2006
* October 1957: It is hard to believe, but (instead of the advanced United States) it was the backward Soviet Union, under the leadership of Nikita Khrushchev, which began the space age by using the Soviet R-7 rocket to put Sputnik 1, a small human-made satellite that went beep, into orbit around the Earth. Thus the Soviet Union beat out the much more advanced United States, a sleeping giant, and started the Space Race. Some, but not all, of the people of Spaceship Earth were awakened by this amazing event. Humans now had the ability to put objects into space. It is amazing that the thinking of American leaders had not led to Americans leading civilization into the Space Age. Something apparantly was wrong with American leadership and is wrong with the thinking of Americans that caused them not to lead in the conquest of space.
*October 1958: The U.S. Congress approves the formation of the National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA),( a bureaucracy that would build boredom.)
* September 1959: The Soviet Union purposely crashed its Luna 2 space probe onto the surface of the Moon. (Another waste, but it proved that humans now had gained the ability to send things to the Moon.)
* October 1959: the out-of-balance Soviet Union, under the leadership of Nikita Khrushchev, uses Luna 3, a space probe to take the first photos of the far side of the Moon, again beating out the technologically advanced United States. Thus, for the first time, humans saw images of the far side of our Moon. (Through the competition of the good Space Race, human knowledge was increasing, and by sending robotic things into space we humans got knowledge that humans could not get without the machines.)
* April 1960: Tiros, a weather satellite, is put into orbit around the Earth to begin observing weather on Spaceship Earth. (Robotic probes can increase human knowledge. The jobs of some space colonists might be to service and repair in orbit the weather satellites and other robotic spacecrafts.)
* April 1961: the economically crippled Soviet Union, under the leadership of Nikita Khrushchev, orbits Yurii Gagarin, the first man in orbital space. (Another tremendous achievement for the Soviet Union in the good Space Race with the United States (still trying to catch up.) With the first man in space, the Soviet Union demonstrated that humans in spacecrafts can survive in the vacuum of space for short periods of time.)
* May 1961: President John Kennedy makes the wonderful announcement that we will send a man to the Moon and bring him back safely before the end of 1960's. (Humans tend to like exciting missions that will increase their abilities and the frontiers of civilization and knowledge. The mission of the orbital space colonists, using the power of the competitive free market, will be to demonstrate that humans can build small, privately owned settlements in orbital space , some of which will grow into great, civilized, orbiting cities.)
* July 1962: Telstar I, a television satellite, is placed in space so that television broadcasts can be sent between Europe and the United States. (Progress is being made. Some of the orbital space colonists will be employed servicing and expanding the television and communication system in orbital space so that the people of our Spaceship Earth will come to think of themselves first as Earthlings and only secondarily as local nationalities, just as the people of the original 13 colonies gradually came to think of themselves as Americans first and as residents of their current state secondly.)
* December 1962: Mariner II, a space probe flys by Planet Venus. Now we know that humans can send things into space, can send things to the Moon, and can send things to Planet Venus. (More progress being made ! )
* June 1963: The backward Soviet Union sends the first woman, Valentina Tereshkova, into orbit. (Good news because space colonization can't really happen without women. In healthy, orbital space colonies, I recommend that the ratio of men and women should be about equal.)
* March 1965: A Soviet cosmonaut does the first space walk in orbital space. (Many space walks will be necessary in the building of the coming orbital space colonies. Cosmonaut Aleksei Leonov demonstrated that humans can live in a spacesuit in the vacuum of space.)
* April 1965: Early Bird, Intelsat I, becomes the first commercial communication satellite in orbit. It is put into a geosynchronous orbit about 22,000 miles (?) above Spaceship Earth so that it orbits the Earth at the same speed that the Earth turns. Thus Early Bird hovers above the same area of Spaceship Earth. (Much more free enterprise is needed in orbital space. After the governments establish the first competitive, free enterprise colonies with the purpose of learning how to live and thrive in the orbital space, competitive free enterprise with private ownership will become the main foundation of the coming and growing, orbital space colonies.)
* July 1965: Space probe Mariner IV takes close up photos of Mars, proving humans can send things to Mars, (another triumph. This means it will be possible to establish space stations with supplies and later space colonies in orbit around Mars, and it will be much cheaper to go to a space station that has supplies than to go to Mars and then go down to the surface of Mars. It will be good to establish space stations located so that it is easy and cheap to visit the two small moons of Mars, which have very weak gravity wells and are thus a good souce of building materials.)
* February 1966: Luna 9, a soviet Moon probe, bounces down unto the Moon and takes pictures of the lunar surface.
* March 1966: Neil Armstrong and Dave Scott dock two spacecraft in Earth orbit. (In the coming orbital space colonies much docking and re-arranging of the privately owned space habitats and privately owned spacecraft will be needed.)
* April 1966: The Soviet Union's space probe Luna 10 uses rocket braking to slow down enough to go into orbit around the Moon. (In the coming orbital space colonies, the space habitats and the space crafts will be able to use rocket power to alter their orbits and re-arrange the configuration of the individual space colonies.)
* September 1968: The Soviet Union's Zond 5 orbits the Moon.
* December 1968: Astronauts Bill Anders, Jim Lovell, and Frank Borman in Apollo 8 are the first humans to orbit the Moon. They orbit ten times. (The United States is improving in its space capabilities.)
* July 20, 1969: US Apollo 11 Astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin are the first humans to step onto the Moon, while Michael Collins orbits overhead all alone in Moon orbit. (A huge triumph for the technologIcally advanced United States. We Americans are beginning to have abilities in space..)
* December 1970: The Soviet Union lands its probe Venera 7 by parachute onto the surface of hot, hot Planet Venus. (Using Sunshine reflectors and other shielding and cooling devices, it should be possible to put a spacestation in orbit around Venus, where there is a huge abundance of orbital solar power.)
* April 1971: The Soviet Union put spacecraft Salyut 1 into orbit around our Planet Earth. ( A poor translation that is easy to remember could be "firework salute 1.) Spacecraft Salyut 1 orbited our Planet Earth for about half a year.
* October 1971: Because of the Soviet failure to boost Spacecraft Salyut 1 to a higher orbit, Spacecraft Salyut 1 fell back to Earth. ( his type of destruction is common and is bad for the advancement of orbital colonization. It is expensive to transfer stuff from Earth to space. To advance the colonization of space, we humans need spacecraft and stuff and garbage kept in orbit for re-cycling and re-use.)
* May 1973: The United States used its last heavy lift Saturn V Rocket to launch Skylab, its first marvelous and roomy work shop space station into low Earth orbit, (but later American high-ranking vandals would ignorantly destroy it in July 1979. Also it is sad that American leaders decided to shut down our successful Saturn V heavy lift rocket which could advanced us rapidily as Spaceship Earth's leading nation in the colonization of our solar system. Because of this error, we still in 2006 haven't started the orbital space colonization that we could have started back in the Twentieth Century. We were successful in going to the Moon, and then we had a failure in American leadership that lead the American space program into great waste and sleep.) Skylab orbited our Planet Earth roughly about every hour and a half at a low orbital altitude of roughly about 430 kilometers ( or roughly about 260 miles.)
* December 1973: The United States' space probe Pioneer 10 enters the Jovian mini solar system and takes photos of Planet Jupiter and some of its moons. (It would be good to add orbital space colonies to Jupiter's system of moons. If we had kept our Saturn V heavy lift rockets, seeding our solar system with space stations and then colonies wouldn't be so difficult. Without heavy lift rockets, space colonization is more difficult.)
* February 1974: Unhappily for orbital space colonization, space station workshop Skylab was shut down, but happily it was left in low Earth orbit. Skylab's orbit had been roughly about 430 kilometers (roughly 260 miles) above the surface of the Earth, but because of drag from the slight presence of atmospheric air molecules, the altitude of Skylab would decrease slowly over time. Unhappily, the plans to put a propulsion unit on Skylab and boost it to higher orbit was not done by the foolish American leaders.
* June 1974: The Soviet Union put spacecraft Salyut 3 into orbit around our Planet Earth. It was in orbit for about 7 months.
* December 1974: The Soviet Union put spacecraft Salyut 4 into orbit around our Planet Earth. Salyut 4 orbited our Planet Earth for about 2 years and 1 month.
* January 1975: Spacecraft Salyut 3 instead of being boosted to a higher orbit falls back to Earth. (Waste is common in governmental programs.)
* July 1975: In Earth orbit, the American Apollo spacecraft links up with the Soviet Union's Soyuz spacecraft. (Oh, can we ever make the Klingons our friends ?)
* October 1975: From its Venera 9 space probe, the Soviet Union sends television pictures from the surface of hot, hot Venus. (A television and film industry will probably grow up in the orbiting space cities of the fantastic future.)
* June 1976: The Soviet Union put spacecraft Salyut 5 into orbit. Salyut 5 orbited our Spaceship Earth for more than one year and a month.
* July 1976: Viking 1, a probe from the United States, sends photos from the surface of Mars. (We can send things to Mars and receive communications back. It would even be possible to put a spinning space station into orbit around Mars from which a colony could grow. Orbiting a planet is easier than landing on a planet.)
* February 1977: Spacecraft Salyut 4 fell back to Earth. (Waste is common in governmental programs.)
* August 1977: Spacecraft Salyut 5 is destroyed. (Waste is common in governmental programs.)
* September 1977: The Soviet Union put spacecraft Salyut 6 into orbit. Salyut 6 orbited our Spaceship Earth for almost five years.
* July 1979: American high-ranking vandals ignorantly destroyed the marvelous space station workshop Skylab by crashing Skylab into an area of the Indian Ocean and Australia. Instead of being vandals, they could have boosted Skylab into higher orbit and then sold it to the highest bidder. (But they chose to destroy Skylab ! Oh, unhappy time for orbital space colonization.)
* September 1979: Pioneer 11, a space probe from the United States, reaches the mini-solar system of the gas giant Saturn and sends back photos of Saturn and its rings. (If we had kept our Saturn V heavy lift rockets, we could have put a spacestation in orbit around Saturn.)
* July 1982: Soviet Spacecraft Salyut 6 is destroyed. (Waste is common in governmental programs.)
* April 1982: The Soviet Union put spacecraft Salyut 7 into orbit. Salyut 7 orbited our Spaceship Earth for almost nine years.
* April 1984: Astronauts James van Hoften and George Nelson make a repair of an orbiting satellite. (There should be a lot of repair work in orbital space for the coming orbital space colonists.)
* January 1986: After a slow eight year trip in space, the space probe Voyager 2 reaches the large Planet Uranus and takes pictures of the planet and some of its moons. (This proves that we can send things to the planets of our outer solar system. In the future we can send the building blocks of orbiting space colonies to our outer planets. We could already have done so if we had not discontinued our heavy lift rockets.)
* February 1986: The troubled Soviet Union does a good thing and sends a spacecraft up out of the Earths gravity well to form the core of humanities new space station known as Mir, which word "Mir" has several meanings in English, two of which are "peace" and "world." Over the years, the Soviets would gradually send up more spacecraft to be joined to humanities' growing Mir Space Station. The Soviets used their Proton Rocket to launch one-at-a-time many of the spacecrafts that would become part of this slowly growing space station. The Mir Space Station would take about an hour and a half to orbit our Planet Earth at an altitude of about 390 kilometers (or roughly about 240 miles.) Later, this important spacestation would be destroyed in March 2001 by high ranking Russian vandals.
* March 1986: The Soviet Union sends its space probe Vega 1 to Comet Halley. (In the future, space colonists will go to comets and mine them for water and other raw materials.)
* May 1986: Two cosmonauts make transfers between the two small spacestations: Mir and Salyut 7. (Think of these two small space stations as several habitats in large, future, orbiting space cities where many transfers will be normal.)
* February 1991: Spacecraft Salyut 7 fell back to Earth. (Waste is common in governmental programs.)
* 1991: The out-of-balanced and troubled Soviet Union collapses. (With a gradual turn toward competitive, free market capitalism and local democracy the former Soviet peoples should become better able to achieve their higher potential, but the transitions turn out to be very slow and troubled. The Russians and former Soviet space facilities may have a comparative advantage in offering to launch spacecraft and habitats into orbital space for the coming space colonies of all the nations of our Spaceship Earth?)
* 1998: The construction of the International Space Station begins. Now the human race has two orbiting space stations: Space Station Mir and the International Space Station. (This is a step forward for the starting of orbital space colonization.)
* March 2001: The fabulous Space Station Mir is stupidly destroyed by Russian high-ranking vandals. (Instead of boosting the Mir Space Station to higher orbit or selling it to the highest bidder, Russian high-ranking vandals instead plunged this historic space station into the South Pacific Ocean. This destruction is a big set-back for orbital space colonization. With destructive vandals in positions of authority, it is indeed difficult to get the human race off its Spaceship Earth and into the coming space colonies. The destruction of Space Station Mir leaves the human race with only one measly International Space Station.)