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RKK Energia Confirms Private Trip To the Moon

Unknown Lamer posted more than 2 years ago | from the where-can-i-sign-up dept.

Moon 92

Teancum writes "RKK Energia, the prime contractor for the Russian space program and the company who builds the Russian Soyuz spacecraft, recently confirmed negotiations are underway with space tourism company Space Adventures for a privately financed crewed flight around the Moon. While the offer and purchase of at least one seat has been discussed earlier, this is the first time Energia has confirmed the negotiations and has gone into at least some details in terms of what they are expecting to have happen with this flight and the approximate timeframe for when this flight would take place: sometime in 2016 or 2017."

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92 comments

In Soviet Russia... (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140470)

In Soviet Russia, rocket launches YOU!

Niggerdick (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140476)

Big thick nigger penis with uncircumsized head. For Apple fans only. Plus if you peel back the foreskin you get free DICK CHEESE! Mmmm, non-dairy dick cheese. Makes a good spread for your morning toast.

150 million per ticket? (2)

Ogi_UnixNut (916982) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140482)

I am sometimes totally amazed at how much money an individual can have. I can't fathom 150 million USD, let alone be able to pay that much on a tourist trip (no matter how awesome this is). Whoever the two individuals are, they are some lucky b******s!

If this works out, I can hope that the price will go down in time so I can make this trip one day :)

Re:150 million per ticket? (4, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140532)

Just wait until you hear what the ticket back from inevitable(if undoubtedly historic) death on the hostile airless rock costs... That is where they really get you.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

shoehornjob (1632387) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140896)

That's a big trip and I don't think I'd be the first one in quite a while to make it. There's too many opportunities for a calculation to be slightly off then BOOM we're going down. Yeah I'll wait till they have sent a bunch of people around before my trip.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37142726)

That's a big trip and I don't think I'd be the first one in quite a while to make it. There's too many opportunities for a calculation to be slightly off then BOOM we're going down. Yeah I'll wait till they have sent a bunch of people around before my trip.

I'm very sure this is what people said about the horse, train, car, plane...

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140978)

In that vein, has any human met an extraterrestrial death yet? A number of people have snuffed it on the pad, or on the way up; but the only fatality I can think of that occurred even in earth orbit was that of everybody's favorite adorable cosmonaut [wikimedia.org]...

It isn't, er, high on my aspirations list; but "First human to die on the moon" would beat the fuck out of "Nth human to die in hospital/nursing home".(Particularly if I had time to situate myself so that my horrifying dessicated husk would be artfully positioned to surprise and terrify future visitors...

Re:150 million per ticket? (2)

S.O.B. (136083) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141178)

The only humans deaths in orbit were the crew of Soyuz 11 [wikipedia.org] who died when their capsule decompressed after it separated from Salyut 1.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140538)

I am sometimes totally amazed at how much money an individual can have. I can't fathom 150 million USD, let alone be able to pay that much on a tourist trip (no matter how awesome this is). Whoever the two individuals are, they are some lucky b******s!

Yeah, luck. Luck is totally the only way anyone ever becomes rich. All of them are lottery winners, or something.

I take it you vote Democrat?

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

AlphaFreak (646767) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140580)

Well, you can win the lottery, or you can steal it (at gunpoint or via scam). I don't know of any other way one person can make himself super-rich.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140724)

There is. Market Speculation.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Noughmad (1044096) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140602)

Yeah, luck. Luck is totally the only way anyone ever becomes rich. All of them are lottery winners, or something.

It is the only way to get that rich.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140668)

I know. Bill Gates was so lucky with his lottery wins.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140742)

yes. he was.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140754)

He was lucky to have the right skills at the right time in a society that let him do what he did. But his skills back then would not bring him the same place today.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37141300)

He also had wealthy parents who could afford a proper education and lots of contacts with people in the "right places" to make business deals. Bill Gates moved from rich to mega-rich. Still a success story on his own merit, but it's not like this guy came from nowhere.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37141464)

Yeah, right contacts in both CIA and NSA, made him the alphabetical agencies frontman to the whole world ... so spying was much more elegant and simple afterwards ...

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141486)

He was lucky to have rich parents who floated him the capital he needed for his company, and connected parents who helped him get a contract with IBM.

Re:150 million per ticket? (2)

causality (777677) | more than 2 years ago | (#37148600)

He was lucky to have rich parents who floated him the capital he needed for his company, and connected parents who helped him get a contract with IBM.

As little children everywhere begin to discover, life is inherently unfair. I remember when I was a small child and started to notice this. I didn't like it much myself.

The question is whether they stay childish into their adult years or if they come to accept this and do the best they can with the hand they are dealt. That means trying to better your lot in life. That means being responsible for what you can control. Sometimes it means tightening your belt and saying "no" to some petty indulgence (or one not-so-petty for which you are not yet ready) so you can work towards a larger, more fulfilling goal -- what is called delayed gratification.

Maybe you wanted to have multiple children at the ripe old age of 19 instead of first getting an education and establishing a career and a stable two-parent household. Okay, you have that freedom. You can have what you want right now. But don't complain if you don't have the easy life you dreamed of. That's just one unusually common example of what is so often called "bad luck" and absolutely isn't. There's no way you didn't know what birth control was, be it rubbers or one of the dozen or so forms of non-surgical birth control methods available to women.

One sure sign of childishness is when you think it's the job of government or anyone else who can use force/coercion to try to force your particular brand of "fairness" on everyone else with no concern for whether they welcome it. No amount of hardship ever made me feel like I had the right to demand anything from anyone else. And naturally government's brand of "fairness" is to take someone else down a peg or two, it is seldom if ever about uplifting someone else so they can develop a marketable trade, business acumen, financial savvy, or other skills it takes to succeed on your own with no further help from anyone.

Government's brand of "fairness" is always about encouraging dependency and a deep sense of being cheated. It is a means to achieve political power by always being needed. The people who vote for this think they are being served. They think they are evening a score or spreading the wealth but this is false. They're being used like the useful iditos they are. Always the illusion is that you are being served or helped but the politicians are only helping themselves to you. We've been doing things this "progressive" way for a long time now and the wealth disparity between rich and poor has only become worse. Only an insane fool keeps trying the same thing over and over again despite all evidence that it isn't working, that it fails to achieve the desired result.

I'm not completely sure what any kind of "ultimate solution" would be, but I do know we will never even get a partially constructive solution if we are not willing to abandon failed ideas that have been given plenty of chances and have failed each time. Trying harder and harder to implement a failed idea just leads to more failure. I know why the politicians don't want to admit that. Until they finally do bankrupt the country, it works very much in their favor. What I don't understand is why so many ordinary citizens don't want to even consider the idea long enough to see if it might be valid.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 2 years ago | (#37150208)

lol Libertarians.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

causality (777677) | more than 2 years ago | (#37163790)

lol Libertarians.

Relative self-sufficiency and a willingness to take responsibility for one's own choices was a high ideal long before the word "libertarian" existed.

Of course, if you don't like what I said but find it too difficult to refute with your own superior reasoning, namely because you have none, you can always try to lump me together with some group that you already have some talking points against. In your case that would be much easier than dealing with me as an individual because then you can pretend you already know what I believe without listening to a thing I say or evaluating the soundness of my reasoning. It's the nice easy way out of being an adult that you seem to be looking for.

The term for this weak technique is "pigeonholing" if you want to read about it for yourself.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 2 years ago | (#37164576)

This does not mean that you are not spouting typical Libertarian talking points.

Relative self-sufficiency and a willingness to take responsibility for one's own choices was a high ideal long before the word "libertarian" existed.

And for most of history such an idea would get a person killed, usually by wild animals, long before he will have a chance to annoy his fellow humans with it.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

causality (777677) | more than 2 years ago | (#37179886)

This does not mean that you are not spouting typical Libertarian talking points.

Relative self-sufficiency and a willingness to take responsibility for one's own choices was a high ideal long before the word "libertarian" existed.

And for most of history such an idea would get a person killed, usually by wild animals, long before he will have a chance to annoy his fellow humans with it.

By wild animals? If you are suggesting that the only way to be a responsible adult who can manage one's own affairs without undue interference is to become a hermit living in the wilderness, then you implicitly recognize the same problem I am talking about. Living totally apart from civilized society should not be a requirement for having personal liberty.

What really annoys fellow humans is when you try to tell consenting adults what they may do in their own homes, or with their own bodies, or what they may read, think, and believe. The ones who already agree would celebrate using state police power to force their ideals on others, of course.

There is no better example than the War on (some) Drugs. If someone is a responsible adult who holds down a job, does productive work, pays his bills on time, pays his taxes, never drives impaired, and otherwise harms no one at any point in time, why would you threaten them with punishment because they want to smoke a joint in their own home after a long day at work? What's it to you? If you think marijuana is some evil substance that brings out the worst in people, then don't smoke it. But if someone is using it responsibly, for what would you punish them? Offending you?

Now if someone is not responsible and is driving impaired, or is robbing someone else to get money for drugs, or can't hold down a job and needs public assistance for no reason other than drug abuse, by all means they should be dealt with. But it is not their drug use that is the problem. It is their inability to take responsibility for their own lives.

Relative self-sufficiency means that if I am able to take care of my own affairs and avoid becoming a burden to others, then I should do that. If circumstances do not allow me to do this, I should work to change them so that I am no longer a drain on others. This is not anarchy. It implies a government that can protect civil rights and prevent one person from using force or fraud against another person. The kind of society I want to live in doesn't just let its members starve either, but neither does it encourage dependency on hand-outs.

It has nothing to do with wild animals and whether they will become man-eaters. Maybe you're going to this extreme out of some kind of frustration. I suppose a lot of what I say has common ground with liberterians. I find a lot of kinship in (little-l) libertarian thought. They're about as tired as I am of the nanny-state and the downtrodden society of people who cannot think and act for themselves it produces. That does not mean I look to any group or organization to tell me what I should believe and why I should believe it, it means I learn what I can from whomever I can learn it. During this process I can't be concerned with whether you personally find them distasteful.

To deliberately identify me with a group just because I sound a bit like them is dismissive. It's a way to say that I'm not really an individual who can form his own opinions and positions on important topics. Did it ever occur to you that marching to the beat of this drummer or that drummer is exactly how we have inherited such a broken society? For the kind of stupidity and short-sightedness you see daily in the administration of the USA, that requires large masses of people who surrender their self-determination in exchange for group affiliation. This is often called groupthink. It comes from no appreciation of the monied interests and political gain driving most of modern party politics.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 2 years ago | (#37219650)

Living totally apart from civilized society should not be a requirement for having personal liberty.

I see it the opposite way -- a sane idea of "personal liberty" should be implementable without throwing a person out of civilized society. I reject your idea of "personal liberty" if it doesn't fit into any society that does not sacrifice all its functions just to accommodate such an idea. This kind of single-issue society would be unlivable nightmare if it was ever implemented.

What really annoys fellow humans is when you try to tell consenting adults what they may do in their own homes, or with their own bodies, or what they may read, think, and believe.

And what annoys me, is that just to allow some "adults" to destroy their bodies with drugs, Libertarians along with the worst kind of Social Conservatives, deny people the right to ask the rest of society for medical help whenever they are sick (because then any public healthcare system would be overwhelmed with dying crackheads).

Relative self-sufficiency means that if I am able to take care of my own affairs and avoid becoming a burden to others, then I should do that.

This is impossible, so it is completely irrelevant. Everyone is in some way "a burden" to everyone else around him, he just may not be able to recognize it.

They're about as tired as I am of the nanny-state and the downtrodden society of people who cannot think and act for themselves it produces. That does not mean I look to any group or organization to tell me what I should believe and why I should believe it, it means I learn what I can from whomever I can learn it. During this process I can't be concerned with whether you personally find them distasteful.

I understand your point. I just find it stupid and completely incompatible with my system of values. Life is full of compromises. Would I want to have more freedom, in general? Probably. Would I want to have more freedom if the same freedom will be given my enemies? That depends what "freedom" it is, as I wouldn't trust my enemies with things I trust governments with.

For example, for me freedom of speech means being able to post comments on Slashdot and read crappy editorials that pass for journalism, but can occasionally inform me about things happening in the world. But for Philip Morris it means advertising addictive substance that makes people lives shorter and less healthy, for Fox News it means rallying uneducated people to support corporate lackeys in the government, for Microsoft it means spreading lies about everything that competes with their software.

Would I give up some of my freedom of speech to make them shut up? I would. Would I trust government to handle it right? Nor always. But since government handles everything that mass distribution of speech depends on, anyway, it is not going to be more corrupt or more abusive. No one would be any worse if intentional lying to the public, or exploitation of known psychological weaknesses with clear profit motive was banned -- and the only reason not to do it is "freedom of speech" dogma. In this example I see some set of restrictions on speech as a perfectly valid tradeoff. It somewhat hurts everyone (we assume that government is corrupt and occasionally such a law would be misused) but it prevents harm that is far greater than one it causes. Even better, the more people care about electing honest people into the government, the less it would be abused, and crooks would be still kept away from mass media. And don't tell me that "First they came for Fox News and 419 scammers..." -- for a person who is not infected with this freedom-worship this sounds about as stupid as "first they came for serial killers", and the whole thing is a slippery slope fallacy to begin with.

Sure, this position is unimaginable for Libertarians, it rejects the sacred slogan of "liberty", and worse yet, the most enshrined form of liberty -- freedom of speech. But this is why I see them as nothing more than vehicles for political slogans. And this is why Social Conservatives love them so much -- they share those slogans, but Social Conservatives will never turn their lives into propaganda campaigns for one of their fallacious talking points, Libertarians do it for them.

Re:150 million per ticket? (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140806)

Yeah, luck. Luck is totally the only way anyone ever becomes rich. All of them are lottery winners, or something.

It really depends on what you mean by "luck". I couldn't find any good numbers for those just able to take a $150 million vacation('millionaires' includes far too many people a factor of ten or two too poor, while 'billionaires' excludes those in the 151-999 million range who could afford it if they wanted it enough. '150 millionaires' just isn't a very charismatic cut-off category...); but the 2011 Forbes list of billionaires was only 1,210 names long. With a world population around the 6.8 billion mark, that makes billionairehood a very low-probability condition(~1.8x10^-7).

The question, then, is whether you wish to define 'luck' in the fairly broad sense of "possessing a desirable and statistically improbable outcome", or whether you wish to assert that there is a usefully broad swath of things(not themselves allocated by chance) that an individual can use to skew his outcome(and whose likelihood of doing so isn't simply a matter of chance)...

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

CharlyFoxtrot (1607527) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142532)

If you like thinking about this kind of stuff, I recommend reading "Fooled by Randomness" by N. Taleb where he talks about stuff like survivorship bias [maths.org] among rich traders :

"Say we have a collection of traders whose strategies do no better than random: they will have a good year half the time, a bad year the other half. Half of them will have a good year. A quarter will have two good years in a row, and so on. One in 32 will do well five years running. Of course, it never occurs to them that their success is random: they attribute it to their superior strategy, and imagine they are in the top 3% of traders."

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140894)

I take it you count yourself among the wealthy and gladly pay the welfare for the elite and the poor they wont pay?

Re:150 million per ticket? (2)

elsurexiste (1758620) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140606)

If this works out, I can hope that the price will go down in time so I can make this trip one day :)

You should read "The Rocket", a short story by Ray Bradbury. It's about the same thing!

There's gold in them thar hills. (1)

rednip (186217) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140694)

I'm sure that there has to be a lot of very exploitable mineral wealth on the moon. Not the least of which is water, and the ability to grow low gravity crops. Our gravity well is very expensive to climb. Lunar launches could be made using nuclear engines. Space tourism begins with a service plaza on the moon.

Re:There's gold in them thar hills. (1)

bberens (965711) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142956)

The energy costs alone make it unfeasible to meaningfully mine minerals or grow crops on another planet/moon and ship it back to the Earth. Energy would have to become practically free for it to be worthwhile and I honestly don't ever see that happening.

Re:There's gold in them thar hills. (1)

EdZ (755139) | more than 2 years ago | (#37144096)

Entirely dependant on the material. On the Moon, a ground-based slingshot launcher can feasibly get you out of the gravity well, whereas on earth you need to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps using chemical rockets.
Plus, you have the advantage of megatons of metals lying about, large flat areas for placing solar panels, and metres (or kilometres) of natural radiation shielding. The Moon is the natural shipyard for Earth-orbit and beyond.

Re:There's gold in them thar hills. (1)

bberens (965711) | more than 2 years ago | (#37144782)

Except a falling rock the size of a meaningful mining project would destroy a city.

Re:There's gold in them thar hills. (2)

Ost99 (101831) | more than 2 years ago | (#37146116)

The energy cost of going from the Earth to the Moon is enormous, going the other way is much cheaper.
Current railgun technology would be capable of launching objects from the Moon to the Earth at ridiculous low cost (solar powered ~3kWh /kg).
A solar farm of 1 square km should be sufficient to launch 1000 metric tons of material from the Moon each day.

Re:There's gold in them thar hills. (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37294420)

So why aren't we doing the very same thing with "current technology" in the Sahara? (kinda more current actually - say, just storing the collected energy in chemical propellants; also powering production line of launchers and its supply chain) Even at an order of magnitude (or two, or three, or four, or five, or six) lesser output of launched mass per km^2, it would be a bargain.
Yet the Sahara, despite being insanely more welcoming for infrastructure than the Moon, is not an industrial powerhouse of the planet but more or less a wasteland...

And that material would still need to be propelled en route and/or landed safely as a rather largish mass; scattered stream of pellets wouldn't be much good for anything except burning up in the atmosphere.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140762)

To me 150 million sounds like quite a bargain. I mean why aren't NASA doing such trips? It can't be a price tag of 150 million that stops them from doing so, can it?

Re:150 million per ticket? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140852)

I can't fathom 150 million USD

If Obama gets reelected, 150 million USD MIGHT buy you a loaf of bread.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

Vectormatic (1759674) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141262)

Same here.

Actually, the way my life is, i'm having trouble even seeing myself driving a car worth more then 50k. That's not to say i'm poor, but after buying a house and having a family, those kind of things suddenly seem pipe-dreams. Never mind milions for a space-trip.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37147806)

"more then"...

More THEN?

More THAT?

Bigger THAT?

What the hell is it with you Americans? In the past few years, the internet message boards are now full of "more then"s and "better that"s.

Since when did the word 'than' turn into 'then' or 'that'?

Is it THAT hard to understand? What the hell are they teaching you idiots in school nowadays?

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

slartibartfastatp (613727) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142112)

I truly believe that our sons or grandsons will get to complain how crowded the lunar bus was, how stinky the people were, or how is it possible to take so much time to get to a natural satelite. But I'm an optimist.

Re:150 million per ticket? (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142338)

I can hope that the price will go down in time so I can make this trip one day :)

While hoping, better don't aim the chances of that happening anywhere above negligible to minuscule ...physics, rocket equation, is a bitch.

Dreams of "big and glorious" space travel popularised by works of fiction (often a sort of scifi cargo cultism, and contrary to many core things we've learned about our world; they are a tool not of space travel, but of storytelling ...if anything trying hard to not make the depicted world too different from earthly experiences, too uncomfortable and unpalatable for the audiences - limiting their imagination, really) simply hit the absolutely wild realities of actually existing universe. And/or they will have to compete with other approaches...

For example, vast majority of the passengers / colonists can be moved while they are highly miniaturised and in deep hibernation - something we already do routinely on Earth (but how many people even remember about it in context of space colonisation? There's that confined imagination...). Give me one medium launcher plus additional few dozen million bucks, and I can transport at least a thousand viable homo sapiens practically to anywhere in our system, now. Which could already mean at least below 100 thousand per ticket.

And by the time casually flying around would be maybe-who-knows feasible, the surrounding tech background is likely to be quite different; changing the rules. Heck, 'we' might as well have "magical nanotech" & mind uploading first, making the big & glorious modes of space travel known from scifi completelly superfluous, at best.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37142528)

"Luck" is a human invention to explain occurrences for those that don't understand the reasons for the occurrences. IE, luck doesn't exist. Everything happens for a reason. Our lack of knowledge of the reasoning does not imply its non-existence.

Re:150 million per ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37143392)

On the plus side, the first checked bag is free!

Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (4, Insightful)

master_p (608214) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140590)

Please, when you go around the moon, take some time to get some good photos of the Apollo missions remains. When I say "good photos", I mean photos that show stuff almost as good as they are shown on NASA's videos from the moon.

It would shut the Apollo conspiracy advocators up for good, and close this silly subject.

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (5, Funny)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140672)

Please, when you go around the moon, take some time to get some good photos of the Apollo missions remains.

I want photos of the military bases on the dark side.

The alien ones.

It would shut the Apollo conspiracy advocators up for good, and close this silly subject.

I don't think you quite understand how conspiracy theories work.

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140766)

"I don't think you quite understand how conspiracy theories work."

Exactly! Because any evidence disproving the conspiracy theories MUST be part of the conspiracy. Besides everyone knows that that the dark side of the moon is really Elvis' retirement home. :)

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

mrsquid0 (1335303) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140890)

> "I don't think you quite understand how conspiracy theories work."

> Exactly! Because any evidence disproving the conspiracy theories
> MUST be part of the conspiracy. Besides everyone knows that that
> the dark side of the moon is really Elvis' retirement home. :)

This is exactly how the global warming and October surprise conspiracy
theories work too, except for the Elvis part.

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37141286)

are you suggesting that Elvis' Pelvis shake did not contribute to global warming?

I smell a cover-up!

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (0)

crudd (1893782) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142110)

Conspiracy theories work because there is no evidence to the contrary. If you want me to believe we went to the moon 40 years ago, then do it again. And do it with live streaming video like they did in the 60s. Oh, and do it without any time delay or interference, like they did in the 60s.

Strange though, that even today live video suffers from time delays and interference ON EARTH (say from the Middle East to the US), but 40 years ago we did it from the moon with no problem...

I want video of the landing spot. From the departure from earth, to landing on the moon, to a smiling pic of the astronaut(s) with the apollo flag, to moon departure, and back to earth. Hell, why not just stream it all live...

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141308)

You fool! Do you want to scare the aliens off and lose all the potential knowledge of their anal probe research?

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

arse maker (1058608) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140676)

There is no way that would change anything. If the overwhelming evidence that already exists isn’t enough then nothing can convince you.

Once you buy into the conspiracy nothing can get you out of it. Evidence that is shown is part of the cover up and a lack of disconfirming proof is just evidence there is a cover up in place.

Air tight logic!

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (2)

caturday (1197847) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140688)

Oh come on. You know better than that. Then it'd be "But NASA *paid* you to claim that these were your photos.

Hell, even if they went themselves, they'd claim that it was mirrors dropped by previous unmanned trips. Or swamp gas. Or they never left Earth at all and were in some kind of simulator. Though I suppose there's an easy way to fix that last one: offer to open the airlock.

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140702)

Please, when you go around the moon, take some time to get some good photos of the Apollo missions remains. When I say "good photos", I mean photos that show stuff almost as good as they are shown on NASA's videos from the moon.

It would shut the Apollo conspiracy advocators up for good, and close this silly subject.

LOL....sure it would. They'll just say those photos are fake, too. Or that we planted the items there a few years ago...secret cargo carried up in one of the shuttle missions or something.

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140804)

You have got it backwards. If they produce such pictures it will all be part of the conspiracy. However if they say they looked for what the Apollo missions left behind and didn't find it, then that would be taken to prove the conspiracy theories. But at that point they would accidentally have accepted that mankind had been to the moon.

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#37140826)

That would prove nothing except that they'd paid off the Russians to take pictures of the secret NASA sound stage and pawn them off as coming from the moon.

The Apollo conspiracy theorists don't even acknowledge the pictures of the stuff the various Apollo crews left on the moon taken by just about everyone with the necessary equipment here on Earth, so what makes you think they'd believe these?

Re: Photos of landing site from Earth? (2)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141110)

The Apollo conspiracy theorists don't even acknowledge the pictures of the stuff the various Apollo crews left on the moon taken by just about everyone with the necessary equipment here on Earth

Correct me if I'm wrong - but wouldn't they have good reason to be skeptical of such claims?

I don't remember any photos of the moon landing site as taken from Earth. In fact, it was my understanding that resolving power of just about any optical system in existence on Earth is inadequate?

I know photos were taken from an orbiting satellite a few years ago, the LRO. Even in those pictures the landing site is a mere few pixels;
http://www.space.com/6997-photos-reveal-apollo-11-moon-landing-site.html [space.com]

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142666)

I should hope so. You can't resolve anything the Apollo astronauts left on the moon with any existing telescope on the planet.

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (1)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141152)

Actually, the LRO is currently taking some photos of the Apollo landing sites. From the LRO's Twitter feed on August 10th:

"Today I will begin dipping down from my usual ~50 km orbit to an orbit that will allow me to image the Apollo sites from about 20 km away!"

"Once I reach my new temporary orbit, I'll take images of and around the Apollo sites between August 14 and 19."

"After that, I'll return to my 50-km-orbit until December."

Of course, the conspiracy theorists won't be satisfied. They'll claim the images are Photoshopped or staged or something. You could put them in spacesuits and rocket them to the Moon and they'd still figure out a reason why it's fake. ("NASA drugged our food and this is just a hallucination!")

Re:Please take some good photos of Apollo remains. (2)

Chris Mattern (191822) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142576)

It would shut the Apollo conspiracy advocators up for good, and close this silly subject.

You are far too optimistic. The conspiracy theorists would promptly come up with convincing reasons (well, convincing to them, anyways) as to why the RKK Energia flight was *also* fake, and the photos are obvious fakes.

$150 million is a lot of bus money (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140666)

But I guess Ralph Kramden must have invested it wisely.

Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140808)

This won't be easy. The big russian rocket, the Proton has way too toxic fluoric propellant to be allowed for man-rated flight. The smaller Soyuz (the R7 family) is too weak to do the lifting as a single launch. There will be two or three near-simultaneous launches, maybe 1 unmanned Proton and 1 manned Soyuz, or 2 unmanned Soyuz (Zond) and 1 manned Soyuz to bring all the hardware to LEO, where there will be a need for spacewalks to assemble the big round-the-Moon rocket.

That project will be about as complicated and reliable as the 1979 US mission to save hostages from Iran. Over-complicated plans have a high chance of failure. Maybe it would be simpler to adopt the large, but less toxic Ariane-5 missile for manned launch and that could possible do the whole Moon round-trip in one launch.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141098)

I ask purely out of curiosity: Given that manned rocketry basically consists of getting the engineers to keep hammering away at the problem until "Place self on top of giant cylinder of extraordinarily volatile propellant. Ignite." goes from being sheer insanity to being merely risky, why would the fact that the propellant is toxic, as well as highly volatile, be an obstacle to using it to lift humans?

Fluorine compounds are certainly a pretty horrid lot; but if propellant is making its way into the payload in any quantity you are already pretty screwed, no?

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

Vectormatic (1759674) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141550)

that's what i was thinking, if any bit of the rocket propellent is making it ways into the payload enough to poison the kosmonauts, then the vacuum you are launching into might prove problematic as well.

Ariane 5 has a similar LEO mass to proton, both of which are only a sixth(!) of the LEO payload capacity of a saturn V. A single shot moon mission using a soyuz like capsule and a proton/ariane launcher is pretty much limited to only a flyby, if it is possible in the first place.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142948)

A single shot moon mission using a soyuz like capsule and a proton/ariane launcher is pretty much limited to only a flyby, if it is possible in the first place.

If? Zond 5, essentially a Soyuz launched by Proton, was the very first mission which launched macroscopic life on a flight around the Moon, and safely back.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

Vectormatic (1759674) | more than 2 years ago | (#37143088)

Ok, i didnt know that. Wiki says the weight for Zond-5 is 5 tons (metric), and i thought modern soyuz's are somewhere around 7, then again, Proton M has two tons extra launch weight, so it should be possible allright

thanks for the info!

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37143174)

Soyuz used for Zond missions didn't have the orbital module, that's where the lower mass is mostly coming from (and yeah, with how both Soyuz and Proton improved in the meantime...)

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141832)

Russians are by far the most experienced at autonomous orbital rendezvouz (not much need for a spacewalk), and fairly good at launcher reliability for quite some time, so multiple launch route is the most sensible one - no need for large "dedicated" (small production run, expensive, unproven) launcher, you use what is almost mass-produced and reliable (it helps how the R-7 is "the most reliable ... most frequently used launch vehicle in the world" [esa.int]; just opening R-7 launchpad in Guiana might help with notably greater payload, too)

Plus, at that time they will have half a century of experience in operating the Soyuz - a spacecraft essentially capable of beyond LEO operation. Also the very first spacecraft which took macroscopic life (turtles, most notably ;p ) beyond LEO (around the Moon...) and brought it back, on a Zond 5 mission.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

Megane (129182) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141908)

As others have said, what's the problem with the Proton propellant if the crew compartment is properly space-worthy?

And why assemble anything? Not that orbital docking is exactly a big problem these days, but even if the Proton propellant is a problem, just have it launch the trans-lunar craft and transfer the crew in a rendezvous. And there shouldn't be a need to re-transfer if the trans-lunar craft has re-entry capability.

And most strangely of all, why the 1979 Iran hostages mission? WhyTF would you pick something as random as one of many failures by the Carter administration? This is Slashdot, you're supposed to use automotive analogies around here.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

slartibartfastatp (613727) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142184)

And most strangely of all, why the 1979 Iran hostages mission? WhyTF would you pick something as random as one of many failures by the Carter administration?

To post seemingly unrelated and obscure facts - that's how you get modded up.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37142266)

How about restarting the Energia program? That's a huge chunky launcher using kerosene/LOX and solid boosters, the two launches that have been done worked fine (on the first one, the payload had issues), it's not that old (last launched in 1988), and they were planning to make it man-rated (but had to drop the program for lack of money).

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37142432)

Oops. I just checked, and it's kerosene/LOX boosters around a LH2/LOX core. Still, nothing unusually toxic.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37142830)

Energia experience and tech lives on; quite a few of present and upcoming rockets make use of Energia-derived engines.

The concept of stacking multiple parallel stages is also being pushed further, and probably in a better way than Energia did it. Its approach to that was a bit flawed - either a big-hunkin'-stack around unique core stage, or using (and almost as an afterthought) the boosters singly (as Zenit).

But enter, for example, Angara. Made of 1 to 7 identical core stages (with... Energia-derived engines). Bringing the advantages of almost-mass-production, demonstrated by R-7 [esa.int]. Perhaps even with a payload capability in the range of Energia, with a possible future heavy version of core Angara stage (so yeah, 2 versions would lose a bit the benefits of mass-production; but anyway, normal Angara 7 will also have a nice payload, and nobody does automatic docking more than the Russians - so it's perhaps even better to forget about heavy Angara core stages and just do multiple launches)

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

Mercano (826132) | more than 2 years ago | (#37143204)

The Titan II booster used for the Gemini missions used hypergolic fuels very similar to the Proton. (Titan II used a 50/50 mix of hydrazine and UDMH for fuel, where the Proton uses strait UDMH; both use N2O4 for oxidizer.) Hypergolics are also used to fuel Apollo service module, the LEM, the space shuttle OMS & RCS, the Souyz service module, simply because they don't require cryogenic storage and they ignite on contact, removing the complexity of an ignition system. I don't they use of hypergolics automatically prohibit man-rating. (That said, the sooner the Proton can be retired in favor of kerolox fueled Angara 5, the better. Proton burns some nasty stuff.) I think they are, in fact, going to use the Proton. In the late 60's, the USSR was planing on using using a Proton to send a Soyuz capsule on a circumlunar flight. (Note that they weren't planing on orbiting the moon, just swinging round the dark side and heading back to Earth, similar to the course Apollo 13 used.) They flew four unmanned test flights, but they were unable to fly a reentry pattern that wouldn't have killed the crew. The plans were shelved after Apollo 8 beat them to it with their lunar-orbital mission.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37143442)

In the late 60's, the USSR was planing on using using a Proton to send a Soyuz capsule on a circumlunar flight. (Note that they weren't planing on orbiting the moon, just swinging round the dark side and heading back to Earth, similar to the course Apollo 13 used.) They flew four unmanned test flights, but they were unable to fly a reentry pattern that wouldn't have killed the crew. The plans were shelved after Apollo 8 beat them to it with their lunar-orbital mission.

Zond 5, 6, 7, or 8 did fairly well (6 depressurised while still in deep space, but that's unrelated to reentry). Skip reentry worked fine. Turtles were alive and well (except for those on 6 of course :p ). Their main problems seemed to stem from the late go-ahead, crazy schedule, lack of focus, and related technical problems, apparently. [astronautix.com]

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (1)

Vulch (221502) | more than 2 years ago | (#37145178)

Couldn't find Wikipedia today? The Proton uses N2O4/UDMH, not a fluorine atom in sight. NASA didn't think it was a problem for manned flight as the Titan II used to launch Gemini capsules used N2O4/UDMH+Hydrazine. In fact NASA thought it was safe enough that the launch escape method was aircraft style ejector seats rather than the solid rocket escape tower considered necessary for the Redstone, Atlas and Saturn launches of Mercury and Apollo capsules.

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37145656)

RTFA much?

Re:Sounds like the 1979 Iran mission, repeated (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37158860)

This won't be easy. The big russian rocket, the Proton has way too toxic fluoric propellant to be allowed for man-rated flight.

I don't understand this statement. The Proton uses UDMH (unsymmetrical dimethyl hydrazine) and nitrogen tetroxide. The now retired US Titan 2 used nitrogen tetroxide and a 50/50 mix of UDMH and hydrazine (called Aerozine 50). Correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't that mean that their propellents are virtually identical?

Yet, the Titan 2 was man-rated -- and actually used -- for the Gemini missions.

Moon-shot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37140904)

This was one of the trips Burt Rutan proposed in his 2006 talk? http://www.ted.com/talks/burt_rutan_sees_the_future_of_space.html

Trip AROUND the moon, not TO the moon (4, Informative)

Fished (574624) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141354)

Note that they are apparently just orbiting the moon, not landing. May seem like a "minor detail", but the engineering problems are of an entirely different magnitude.

Re:Trip AROUND the moon, not TO the moon (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 2 years ago | (#37141910)

OTOH their manned lunar lander [wikipedia.org] was the only part of the whole stack which completed development, passed the tests (also in LEO) and reached "flight ready" status.

The above, plus how they demonstrated capability to do automatic landings... I'm sure if you'd throw several hundred million more at RKK Energia, they would be more than happy to make you the thirteenth* man on the Moon.

*But will you dare after what happened to Apollo 13? ;)

Re:Trip AROUND the moon, not TO the moon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37149020)

The above, plus how they demonstrated capability to do automatic landings... I'm sure if you'd throw several hundred million more at RKK Energia, they would be more than happy to make you the thirteenth* man on the Moon.

*But will you dare after what happened to Apollo 13? ;)

If that worries you the obvious solution is to be the first woman on the moon instead. Then the next out the hatch will be the fourteenth person on the moon, thus neatly sidestepping any unfavourable numerology. Or giving you an out, at least.

lottery (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37141492)

Why i think that it is not good idea to fly on Russian rocket this days?
Maybe because their launch success ratio dropping lately, and it is not good idea to end up as Express AM4 satellite.
Especially because they use [google.com] instead of aerospace IC's, smuggled usual IC's from Taiwan. Keywords to search in this translation. "not designed to work in space".

Prediction (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37142994)

When things go wrong, the taxpayers will catch the bill.

Moon walk 1969 = Hollyweird (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37144460)

Can any of my fellow geeks say "Van Allen radiation belt"?
Say it with me now...
No one can escape the Van Allen radiation belts. Period , end of story. No fleshly creature can survive that.
NO ONE HAS EVER GONE TO THE MOON!!!!
All trips happened during "I am not a crook" tricky dicky's time...
Don't be foolish!! Don't believe the hype!

If you want to go to the moon, it will not be a physical journey...

PEACE.

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