[OT] Year in review in space

I'm not quite sure whether I agree or disagree with the commentary here, but it sure is sobering...
http://astronautix.com/articles/thew2004.htm
David Erbas-White
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snip
Spock: Fascinating!
; )
Randy
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Obviously there is less need for communications satellites because each new one has HUGE capacity compared to the one it replaces. And then there are the DirecTV, DISH, Sirius, XM, etc. satellites. Are those considered "communication" since they don't relay telephone calls?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yes, they are communication satellites. they are relaying communications one-way.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I can agree with the pessimism of the article. That's one of the reasons I came back to the hobby 2 years ago. The space program's no longer an adventure to fire the imagination that adds some color to a drab world, it's the bureaucracy that makes the world drab (Be a good little citizen and walk lock step with the rest of the herd, there's nothing better than the life we benign leaders provide you with so don't even think it. There's Wrestling tonight and tomorrow you can watch Survivor: Ad Nauseum....). If that's going to change ya got to step to the line yerself, and to quote Buckwheat from so long ago in the one Little Rascals episode, "He' I is!"
Chuck
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Mon, 17 Jan 2005 18:10:53 -0500, Zathras of the Great Machine

Ahem, the "Space Age" has long passed, we are now in the "Information Age". :(
Alan
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

In truth, we've never been in the "space age"
    Bob Kaplow    NAR # 18L    TRA # "Impeach the TRA BoD"         >>> To reply, remove the TRABoD! <<< Kaplow Klips & Baffle:    http://nira-rocketry.org/LeadingEdge/Phantom4000.pdf www.encompasserve.org/~kaplow_r/ www.nira-rocketry.org www.nar.org
... One nation under surveillance, divisive, with liberty and justice for none.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
shreadvector wrote:

each
I don't know where the article got its data, as I haven't seen the latest FAA report on Commercial launches (should be sometime this month), but the ones for FY 2003 are out, and can be found here: http://ast.faa.gov/rep_study/yir.htm
I know there are a few other reports that break down military, commercial, civilian, etc., but I don't have the links for them right now...Those reports will even tell you the covert satellites that have been launched (as the launch vehicle has to be registered with the UN), but won't tell you what is in those payloads.
Of course comunication satellite launches have gone down, we have better technology and a lack of GEO orbit positions to thank for that. There are only so many useful and safe slots available for GEO (comm or otherwise) satellites. Constellation types (such as Iridium) didn't pan out (i.e. went bankrupt). The reason there was such a spike in launch activity in the 90's (which suprisingly doesn't show on the author's graph) was because of Iridium. That makes me wonder about the author's data even more...
Plus the fact that communication companies can fit more transponders onto a single satellite, increasing bandwidth, users, or both. I can understand comm companies only wanting to replace old/worn out satellites, which has to be done anyway when a GEO satellite's thrusters run out of hydrazine/propellant.
But another factor has been the advent of launching multiple payloads on one rocket, a novel concept reducing the total number of launches.
Until we find a way to get rid of most of the junk that is up there, pretty soon we may not be launching anything, for fear of it being hit by a paint fleck or bolt travelling at 14,000 mph.
Mike
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
David Erbas-White wrote:

seems pretty realistic. not much to disagree with there ... I like the ascerbic tone, too.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Polytechforum.com is a website by engineers for engineers. It is not affiliated with any of manufacturers or vendors discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.