As someone who grew up with Grumman L.E.M. (Lunar Excursion Module) project parents and kids on Long Island, NY and studied some astronomy and planetary atmospheres at Stony Brook University, way back during the Viking landers on Mars ("Cosmos" was on PBS) and the Voyager flyby of Jupiter, Tobias Owen a visiting faculty member, I thought to say something, after all when the new high school went up at home in Centereach, a planetarium was voted for over a swimming pool.
The current active missions are very impressive, the ISS, various planetary probes and rovers, both by the US and other nations, along with various organizations, i.e., Adastra, The Planetary Society, etc., have made the whole field of space quite dynamic and multi-tasked. However, the danger of a "tower of Babel" as Sir Arthur C. Clarke warned, could still be the result of low-orbit development that does not have some grander design for humanity, even if that is to be able to round up junk in orbit cheaply, and intercept NEO asteroids, which as I understand it, would be done from the Moon with a significantly higher expectation of success, which all humanity would appreciate as well as others sharing the wonderful pale blue orb we call earth. And so I think to abandon plans for a return to the Moon, I feel a big mistake, beyond acceptable planetary risk. Let's get those solar sails raised!
February 3, 2010 4:03 PM
And so the Planetary Society tried to launch a solar sail experiment with the help of the Russia submarine missile launcher that ended up in Kamchatka due to the lack of a missile's missed upgrade. NASA had plans for one too. The Planetary Society is back on schedule for another with the help of JAXA, the Japanese space agency. Where's the US's? Whole lotta watts NEO!Powering Spirit on Mars : Built on Facts