Japan - Manned Moon flight in 2025

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by -Cp, Apr 9, 2005.

  1. -Cp
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    -Cp Senior Member

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    Japan announces space launch in 2025. Spacecraft uses 50% less fuel, but only seats 2 and will explode upon collision with bird.

    Japan Announces Manned Moon Flight by 2025
    By Kenji Hall
    Associated Press
    posted: 06 April 2005
    12:20 pm ET


    TOKYO (AP) -- Japan's space agency mapped out a new, ambitious plan Wednesday for manned flights to the moon by 2025 as a first step to explore the solar system's farflung planets, but said decisions about whether Japan will go it alone or collaborate with other nations won't be made for another decade.

    The proposal unveiled by Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, marks the agency's first attempt in years to rethink its missions and rejuvenate a space program that has been hobbled by recent launchpad and space probe failures.

    JAXA sent the plan to a government space panel for review, asking for a budget increase to roughly US$2.6 billion (euro2.03 billion) a year, from US$2 billion (euro1.56 billion). By comparison, NASA's annual budget is US$16.2 billion (euro12.6 billion).

    "Until now, the question has been, 'Can Japan develop its own manned spaceship?' We will know the answer in another 10 years'' when the agency will review its options, JAXA Chairman Keiji Tachikawa said.

    "It won't require a big budget rise,'' he said, adding that it's "too soon to know how much it will cost because things might change in coming years.''

    Japan's long-term vision resembles those of U.S. President George W. Bush and European space officials, who hope to land astronauts and robots on the moon as a first step to sending space shuttle missions to Mars.

    Over the next decade, JAXA's plan calls for scientists to develop robots and nanotechnology for surveys of the moon, and design a rocket and space vessel capable of carrying cargo and passengers.

    By 2015, JAXA will review whether it's ready to pour resources into manned space travel and possibly building a base on the moon. A decision to possibly to try for Mars and other planets would be made after 2025.

    The plan emerges two months after JAXA sent a communications satellite into space aboard the country's workhorse H-2A rocket -- its first successful launch since November 2003, when a rocket carrying two spy satellites malfunctioned after liftoff and was destroyed in mid-flight. That accident forced officials to put the entire space program temporarily on hold.

    It also marks a major policy shift that was set in motion last year when a Japanese government panel recommended that the agency focus on manned space flight instead of unmanned scientific probes.

    Despite being Asia's most advanced space-exploring nation, Japan has been playing catch-up to Europe in commercial satellite launches. Tokyo also has struggled to outdo China, which put its first astronaut into orbit in October 2003 and later announced plans for a trip to the moon.

    Tachikawa said JAXA's plan wasn't a reaction to the recent string of failures that led to a 15-month grounding of the domestically made H-2A rocket.

    JAXA will scrap several planned missions but hasn't publicly said which ones, the agency's executive director, Kiyoshi Higuchi, said. Missions will be reorganized so they aren't so cut off from other projects, as they have been until now, he added.

    JAXA already has a moon survey mission planned. Its SELENE probe -- originally scheduled for launch in 2005 but since delayed -- is designed to orbit the moon, releasing two small satellites that will measure the moon's magnetic and gravitational field and conduct other tests for clues about the moon's origin.

    JAXA officials said their hope is establish a base on the moon that could mine resources found on and under the lunar surface. An illustrated handout showed an astronaut directing an array of robots constructing the base, which would draw solar power from photovoltaic panels and explore the moon's poles for traces of water to convert to hydrogen fuel.

    Eventually, JAXA hopes to expand missions to search for evidence about the origins of the universe and life beyond our planet, JAXA officials said.

    Other aerospace projects include a passenger airliner that will travel at Mach 2 -- or twice the speed of sound -- for five-hour Tokyo-Los Angeles flights and an unmanned, hydrogen-fueled plane that can travel at Mach 5.

    http://www.space.com/missionlaunches/ap_050406_japan_moon.html
     
  2. onedomino
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    onedomino SCE to AUX

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    Perhaps the US should combine its manned space program with Japan. The US has said it will return to the moon by 2017-18. China's target is 2020. The "international" space station will be cut off from US funds in 2010. The Euros have no manned program, but might combine with the Russians, or mabe the Chinese. The US spends about 17-20 billion (non-military, about $50 billion including the military) on space\satellite programs. If we could get the Japanese to sign up for a similar amount, then the combined US\Japan civilian program might be $40 billion per year. With that amount of money we could rapidly get back to the moon, and decrease the amount of time it will take to develop the technology necessary for manned flights to Mars. For both civilian and military reasons, we need to speed up space research and technology development.
     
  3. onedomino
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    onedomino SCE to AUX

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    To sweeten this deal, America could agree to split the funding of a fusion research reator on Hokkaido. Thereby accomplishing two goals: faster space technology and fusion energy research and development. Plus, this deal would leave the EU and China in our technological wake: http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/T68053.htm. This deal would put the two most technologically advanced countries in a firm position of leadership and at the forefront of two of the most important 21st Century technologies.
     
  4. insein
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    insein Senior Member

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    my question is, why havent we been back in 30 years?

    We got there in a freaking trash can back in the 60's. Your telling me that we havent found new and improved ways to travel since then? I was expecting that someone would be living on the moon by now and that there would be privatized flights to and from.

    IT took a week to reach the moon in the tin can 30 years ago. Thats less than in took the original Pioneers to cross the atlantic. Space is truely the last undiscovered country and we havent even tiptoed onto our on neighboring body since the Vietnam war.
     
  5. supermarine
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    supermarine Member

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    hey punk that trash can got our astronaughts back in one piece.
     
  6. insein
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    insein Senior Member

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    You misread me. Im saying that if we could create the technology 30 years ago to goto the moon in a proverbial trash can, then wtf have we been doing since then? We haven't found a way to create habitats that are self sufficient yet for even astronauts to test? We havent invented new craft that can make the journey to the moon faster and safer in 30 years?

    Sure there was nothing there with our 30 year old sensor equipment and knowledge. Who knows what possibilities lie up there and what discoveries are yet to be made. I think the expansion into the solar system is premature when we have yet to discover the full potential of the closest rock to us.

    Im suprised that more entrapenuers with oodles of cash havent invested there time into the possibiltity of a moon flight and not just an orbittal flight. Think of the real estate opportunities.
     
  7. insein
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    insein Senior Member

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    I think this is an excellent idea. This planet aint getting any bigger and the population keeps growing. We need more room as a species within the next 100 to 200 years or humans will be dieing off due to starvation and disease by the millions.
     

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