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Old 07-08-2011, 11:41 AM   #1
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The Final Countdown

The Space Shuttle Atlantis left the launch pad today for the final space shuttle mission. I have to admit I felt a little sad watching it, it almost felt like a step back for space exploration rather than a step forward.


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Old 07-08-2011, 05:51 PM   #2
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I'm a bit sad that the shuttle missions are over, but it is antiquated technology that should have been retired a decade ago.

Godspeed Shuttle Atlantis crew.
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Old 07-08-2011, 05:57 PM   #3
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:40 PM   #4
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:04 PM   #5
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I'm a bit sad that the shuttle missions are over, but it is antiquated technology that should have been retired a decade ago.
The shuttle design may be old, but it was still one hell of a piece of work... still, I'm surprised they haven't come up with anything better in all these years.

Also, psh. Two shuttles go down over a period of 30 years and they scrap the entire line. I'm surprised more disasters haven't happened, for the track record the shuttle program and indeed the entire collective space program of the human race to date has been pretty safe considering the danger the people who go up there are put through.


@ JediAthos: I know what you mean, I feel like space exploration has been slowing down more and more over the years. Most of what we seem to do nowadays is send up satellites and work on the space station.

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Old 07-08-2011, 09:45 PM   #6
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From what I understand its a lot easier, cheaper and effective to send robots up to do anything. I guess I'd rather have them spending their money on inventing cool stuff than inefficient manned space missions, at least until manned space travel improves.



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Old 07-09-2011, 01:16 AM   #7
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I saw Shuttle Columbia go up. It was the same mission that it was destroyed upon reentry. I was really excited to see that happen, and then the disaster of its return struck and I was devastated.

Anyways, the end of this program makes me wonder about the future of space exploration. I can only wonder what will happen next. Will they reboot it with more advanced technology, or start a completely new space program? I guess we'll find out in the far future.
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Old 07-09-2011, 01:53 AM   #8
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still, I'm surprised they haven't come up with anything better in all these years.
Personally I'm still waiting for my spacefaring transformable F-14.


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Old 07-09-2011, 10:46 AM   #9
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@ jawathehutt: There's nothing intrepid about space-fairing robots unless you're watching Transformers or any number of anime.

No one is inspired by space travel like they used to be. "Look, we're using hubble and our ground based telescopes to look at ****." "Oh look, we just sent another robot off to some place to have a look." "Hey look we launched another spy satellite, I can see your house!"

Bah!

@ Mav: If the SDF-1 had crash-landed in 1999 like it was supposed to we'd be going places by now.

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Old 07-09-2011, 10:53 AM   #10
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It alright, we just need to get to Mars to find those Prothean ruins. According to Mass Effect, man will explore Mars for nearly a century via robots before the first manned mission in the 2080s.
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Old 07-09-2011, 12:40 PM   #11
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It alright, we just need to get to Mars to find those Prothean ruins. According to Mass Effect, man will explore Mars for nearly a century via robots before the first manned mission in the 2080s.

Yep, unless there's a Reaper already on Mars waiting for us. Then we could be up to our necks in Geth synthetic doo-doo.


EDIT: Speaking of robots or unmanned spacecraft to explore Mars, here is Nasa's next planned mission.

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Old 07-09-2011, 07:59 PM   #12
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Old 07-10-2011, 07:12 AM   #13
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Even removing a live crew, it's the cost. From what I heard, the costs to keep up with this program are going to become significantly, prohibitively expensive.


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Old 07-10-2011, 11:32 AM   #14
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@ jawathehutt: There's nothing intrepid about space-fairing robots unless you're watching Transformers or any number of anime.
That may be, but Ill take funding to my university over unnecessary manned missions if given the choice.



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Old 07-10-2011, 02:03 PM   #15
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Seems to me that university tuitions annually increase well over the "official" rate of inflation (often by a factor of 3x). If they can't survive on their own, someone else will take their place (remember, not all univ/colleges take govt money). Given that a lot of tech spinoffs often come from things like the space program, I'd risk taking eliminating the Dept of Education in the US and funneling that money to an "unnecessary" manned mission. Frankly, there's so much waste in the govt (yes, including the DoD) that $$s could be carved from a number of places in the federal "non-budget" (we haven't had any from this administration in 2+ years) to finance such endeavors.


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Old 07-10-2011, 09:07 PM   #16
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See, see *points* we've all become a planet of pussies! No wonder the aliens anal probe us, they think that's the general area our brains are at.


Well at least we still have deep sea exploration, though practically no one cares about that.

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Old 07-10-2011, 10:38 PM   #17
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^^^Practically nobody? Glad to see my second cousin who did sea exploration in the Navy still (impractically) counts as somebody.

Back on subject:
As far as space exploration, there are many arguments of what may be best. Some say private sector. Others say let it end. Still others say we must continue on our current course as-is.

All I know is that it has been impractical to do space explorations like this for awhile now and we don't really do much with it except mutate seeds by exposing them to outer space and bring them back as mini science projects for 3rd and 4th grade elementary school kids. That and launch robot probes into space when we really want to do something important.
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Old 07-11-2011, 04:01 AM   #18
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@ GTA: I think deep sea exploration is pretty important if that's worth anything XD




As for the whole issue of issue of space exploration. So far, aside from things relating to satellites, there hasn't been much in the way of innovation coming from space travel... at least not when you compare it to the things private industry comes up with... or things for military use.

As it stands now, there is no space exploration any more, we stopped a long time ago. We're just space observers now and I really wish the people who are able to can come up with a way to make us space explorers again.

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Old 07-11-2011, 04:15 AM   #19
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NASA needs to be privatized since they're not getting a big enough budget from the government to do anything useful

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Old 07-29-2011, 01:45 PM   #20
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Foreign nations push into space as U.S. pulls back

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As NASA retreats from an ambitious human spaceflight program for the foreseeable future, foreign countries are moving ahead with their own multibillion-dollar plans to go to the moon, build space stations and even take the long voyage to Mars.



V Hmmm...this is interesting. V

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NASA wants private companies to one day take astronauts to the station, but that hardware isn't yet ready. The space agency also has plans to build a new launch system to send humans on deep space missions, including a mission to land on an asteroid by the mid-2020s.

But the exact destination of future missions and a formal schedule has not been defined, and there is no guarantees for the financial commitment of the billions of federal dollars needed.

V I wonder if it will ever really happen in my lifetime, a man on mars? V

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The European Space Agency is studying a trip to Mars by conducting a 520-day simulated voyage to the red planet. Six volunteers from various countries have been locked in isolation in a windowless mock spaceship, eating canned foods — except when they trudged through red sand and spiked flags into a mockup of Mars' surface.


http://www.latimes.com/business/la-f...991,full.story


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Old 07-29-2011, 02:24 PM   #21
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NASA needs to be privatized since they're not getting a big enough budget from the government to do anything useful
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Old 07-29-2011, 02:47 PM   #22
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V I wonder if it will ever really happen in my lifetime, a man on mars? V
If it does, I hope we can do it without starting a war with the Mysterons.






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Old 07-29-2011, 04:27 PM   #23
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youtube
Loved that movie.
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Old 07-29-2011, 09:43 PM   #24
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Me, too.


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