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Official Space Nerd
Picture of Hound Dog
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quote:
Originally posted by Balzé Halzé:
Wake me up when one of these billionaires flies to the moon and back. Or at least spends a few days in space orbiting the Earth. Until then, astronauts they are not (IMO).


Several USAF pilots earned astronaut wings for high altitude X-15 flights. Technically, these civilians would rate as 'astronauts,' too.

We have to start somewhere. The Wright brothers' first flight was less than the wingspan of a 747. Less than 70 yrs later, we were walking on the moon.

I believe that commercialization is the future of spaceflight. Government is inherently bloated and innefficient. Let Boeing, Lockheed, or Blackwater make spaceflight financially lucrative, and we will really see access to space become an every-day occurrence.

So, even though I will likely never be able to afford one of these 'tourist trips,' I am 100% in favor of developing and expanding the space tourism market.



Fear God and Dread Nought
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Jacky Fisher
 
Posts: 21266 | Location: Hobbiton, The Shire, Middle Earth | Registered: September 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A friends son has been working in the Blue Origin program in Huntsville for a few years now.


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Live today as if it may be your last and learn today as if you will live forever
 
Posts: 5545 | Location: New Orleans...outside the levees, fishing in the Rigolets | Registered: October 11, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Thank you
Very little
Picture of HRK
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quote:
Originally posted by Gocad:
Well, it looked kinda...boring. It just went up and came down again. I expected a bit more there.


Generally the first time is pretty short and uneventful, it takes practice to maintain it over a period of time....



 
Posts: 17498 | Registered: November 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Official Space Nerd
Picture of Hound Dog
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Gocad:
Well, it looked kinda...boring. It just went up and came down again. I expected a bit more there.


It is supposed to look boring (from the ground). I bet the passengers had a blast (no pun intended). Today, trans-Atlantic flights are 'boring' (another word for 'routine'), yet when Lindbergh flew the Atlantic in 1927, he became the most famous person on Earth. I look forward to the day when it will be 'no big deal' for someone to say they went to space (just like it is no big deal that I flew as a passenger across the Atlantic several times).

This is what is so revolutionary about these flights - the 'normalization' of access to space.

I LOVE that they sent up the kid (18 yrs old) and the 'Mercury 13' lady (82 yrs old). That was genius marketing. It will be awhile until either record is broken (youngest/oldest people in space).



Fear God and Dread Nought
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Jacky Fisher
 
Posts: 21266 | Location: Hobbiton, The Shire, Middle Earth | Registered: September 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Crusty old
curmudgeon
Picture of Jimbo54
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Hound Dog:
quote:
Originally posted by Gocad:
Well, it looked kinda...boring. It just went up and came down again. I expected a bit more there.


It is supposed to look boring (from the ground). I bet the passengers had a blast (no pun intended). Today, trans-Atlantic flights are 'boring' (another word for 'routine'), yet when Lindbergh flew the Atlantic in 1927, he became the most famous person on Earth. I look forward to the day when it will be 'no big deal' for someone to say they went to space (just like it is no big deal that I flew as a passenger across the Atlantic several times).

This is what is so revolutionary about these flights - the 'normalization' of access to space.

I LOVE that they sent up the kid (18 yrs old) and the 'Mercury 13' lady (82 yrs old). That was genius marketing. It will be awhile until either record is broken (youngest/oldest people in space).


Well said 'Hound Dog' and I agree 100%. By Alan's definition Alan Sheppard wasn't an astronaut because he just went up and down in 1961. Try and sell that to anyone that lived through that experience.

Jim


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"If you can't be a good example, then you'll have to be a horrible warning" -Catherine Aird
 
Posts: 9221 | Location: The right side of Washington State | Registered: September 14, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Jimbo54:
Well said 'Hound Dog' and I agree 100%. By Alan's definition Alan Sheppard wasn't an astronaut because he just went up and down in 1961. Try and sell that to anyone that lived through that experience.

Jim

I think there's more to the title 'astronaut' than simply crossing the Karman line. Sheppard, the Mercury & Apollo programs and the X-15 pilots did a whole lot more training and preparation, not to mention all the unknown risks. They were not only pioneering space exploration, but astrophysics and understating human physiology and, a whole host of other issues. This group's achievement is more related to economics than science.

Don't get me wrong, this is very cool and there's now some competition for space travel.
 
Posts: 11556 | Location: Wine Country | Registered: September 20, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Put me in the category of you aren’t an astronaut just because you wrote a check. Astronaut is kind of a two tiered accolade. You have to reach space (there seems to be a disagreement here on the altitude) and you have to be trained to do such a thing. Something beyond “pull this lever if I start screaming” level of training. A new title maybe, “space traveler”, “rocket rider”, etc. Certainly not astronaut. You were a passenger on a spaceship. Even a rudimentary definition of astronaut is someone TRAINED to ride in a spaceship. You aren’t a submariner because you rode 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea at Disney World.

Still cool though. 100% not interested though. Just like I’m not interested in dual parachuting. If I decided to parachute, I want to parachute. Not get strapped to a parachutist and ride along.
 
Posts: 4043 | Registered: June 18, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Crusty old
curmudgeon
Picture of Jimbo54
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by corsair:
quote:
Originally posted by Jimbo54:
Well said 'Hound Dog' and I agree 100%. By Alan's definition Alan Sheppard wasn't an astronaut because he just went up and down in 1961. Try and sell that to anyone that lived through that experience.

Jim

I think there's more to the title 'astronaut' than simply crossing the Karman line. Sheppard, the Mercury & Apollo programs and the X-15 pilots did a whole lot more training and preparation, not to mention all the unknown risks. They were not only pioneering space exploration, but astrophysics and understating human physiology and, a whole host of other issues. This group's achievement is more related to economics than science.

Don't get me wrong, this is very cool and there's now some competition for space travel.


Your points are well taken. Maybe space travelers would be a better description. One of the coolest things about the flight was that it was fully automated and controlled completely on the ground. That is what makes it so ground breaking. It's the start of a new industry.

Jim


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"If you can't be a good example, then you'll have to be a horrible warning" -Catherine Aird
 
Posts: 9221 | Location: The right side of Washington State | Registered: September 14, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Jimbo54:
Your points are well taken. Maybe space travelers would be a better description. One of the coolest things about the flight was that it was fully automated and controlled completely on the ground. That is what makes it so ground breaking. It's the start of a new industry.

Jim

For a hot minute, news media was falling over themselves using the word astronaut, looks like they may have slowed their roll there... Roll Eyes I'm sure a more appropriate 'title' or, word can be dreamed-up; is there a title for somebody who flies around the world or, racks up an ungodly amount of flight miles?

Automated space trips was the original intent of the Mercury program, then the Seven had a fit insuring that there was some human input to the overall journey. I believe the Russian's Vostok and succeeding programs were nearly entirely automated; Russians like automation, check out their submarines and tanks. Red Face
 
Posts: 11556 | Location: Wine Country | Registered: September 20, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Oh stewardess,
I speak jive.
Picture of 46and2
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Astrotourists, maybe.

That Dutch kid is 18yo. Imagine that thrill at that age.

Extraordinary, truly.
 
Posts: 24992 | Registered: March 12, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
A Grateful American
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At least they weren't called "Heroes"...




"the meaning of life, is to give life meaning" I could explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.
 
Posts: 41456 | Location: fl | Registered: December 20, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Non-Miscreant
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I don't care what you call them, as long as I don't have to pay for it. I hate taxes as it is, but I sure don't want to pay for others fun.

On the other hand, I wouldn't mind paying for all the Texas Democrats to take a ride. Maybe it would blow up and crash. Thinking that might not be painful enough.


Unhappy ammo seeker
 
Posts: 17839 | Location: Kentucky, USA | Registered: February 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Info Guru
Picture of BamaJeepster
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quote:
Originally posted by Balzé Halzé:
Looked like a giant flying cock. What the hell?





“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”
- John Adams
 
Posts: 29162 | Location: In the red hinterlands of Deep Blue VA | Registered: June 29, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Even in my lifespan since the 1950a, I have witnessed many advances in aviation. My college major was aeronautic/astronautic engineering. Due to my eyesight, i was unable to fly front seat and thus could not qualify for the astronaut program back long ago.

During my early years, I would never would imagine any other program other than NASA launching humans to space (whatever you define it to be). But here we are today with three private companies doing just that ... and other private companies launching satellites.

However we define the above, to me it is enjoyable to watch this history in the making.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: old dino,


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Posts: 1852 | Registered: November 16, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You aren’t a submariner because you rode 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea at Disney World.



Maybe, not, but I am a Pirate of the Caribbean, dammit!


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Posts: 12623 | Location: Florida | Registered: June 23, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Peace through
superior firepower
Picture of parabellum
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Roger Ramjet made it back safely, did he? Roll Eyes
 
Posts: 93778 | Registered: January 20, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Savor the limelight
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They’re payloads. Pay loads of money, get to space.
 
Posts: 7006 | Location: SWFL | Registered: October 10, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
"Member"
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Paid vs got paid. That's where the title Astronaut comes in.


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Posts: 18731 | Location: 18th & Fairfax  | Registered: May 17, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Info Guru
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quote:
Originally posted by parabellum:
Roger Ramjet made it back safely, did he? Roll Eyes


Apparently so Smile




“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”
- John Adams
 
Posts: 29162 | Location: In the red hinterlands of Deep Blue VA | Registered: June 29, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Official Space Nerd
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People have been bickering over the title of 'astronaut' for decades. Specifically, the flight crews (pilot, flight engineer and mission commander) in the shuttle era complained that they trained for years to pilot the shuttle, so THEY were the 'real' astronauts. But, then, there were mission specialists, who also trained for years and were professional NASA types who went through the full astronaut training. THEN, there were the Payload Specialists, which caused tension among the full-time astronauts (Christa McAuliffe was a Payload Specialist).

According to Wiki:

quote:
Mission specialist (MS) was a position held by certain NASA astronauts. Mission specialists were generally assigned from the astronaut office pool to a limited field of a specific mission, such as those related to medical or engineering experiments.

Other functions on board were pilot, flight engineer and mission commander. Some Space Shuttle missions included personnel assigned as payload specialists in addition to standard mission specialists. While payload specialists were selected for a single specific mission, mission specialists were selected as astronauts first, and then subsequently assigned missions as NASA's needs dictated.


Mission specialists competed for seats with the payload specialists:


quote:
JSC director Chris Kraft and members of the NASA astronaut corps believed that mission specialists—many with doctoral degrees or other scientific background, and all with full-time astronaut training—could operate all experiments. Rick Chappell, chief scientist of MSFC, believed that the scientific community insisted on its own scientists being able to operate experiments in exchange for support of the Space Shuttle program. While mission specialists could operate most experiments, "Since we could take passengers, why not take at least a couple of passengers who had spent their whole careers doing the kind of research they were going to do in space?" he said.


Therefore, many flew on shuttles who did NOT go through the full 'astronaut' training. They were treated publicly just like the 'real' astronauts (from the perspective of the full time NASA crews) who argued that ONLY the flight crews and Mission Specialists earned tbe right to be called 'astronauts.' Few outside NASA seemed to care and lumped them all together.


So, just like there is no clearly-defined boundary of "where 'Space' begins," there won't be a universal definition of 'astronaut' anytime soon.

By the way, just like today's flight, the first Cosmonauts did not 'fly' their spacecraft, either. . .



Fear God and Dread Nought
Admiral of the Fleet Sir Jacky Fisher
 
Posts: 21266 | Location: Hobbiton, The Shire, Middle Earth | Registered: September 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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