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MicaelS

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Fort Worth, Texas
Home country: USA
Member since: Mon Jun 16, 2008, 10:59 AM
Number of posts: 5,488

Journal Archives

NASA’s Plutonium Problem Could End Deep-Space Exploration

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2013/09/plutonium-238-problem/

I know there are people who are anti-nuclear, but to lose deep-space exploration over a lack of plutonium-238 is simply unacceptable to me. Period.

But, once again Congressional stupidity is at fault here, not anti-nuclear activism.


In 1977, the Voyager 1 spacecraft left Earth on a five-year mission to explore Jupiter and Saturn. Thirty-six years later, the car-size probe is still exploring, still sending its findings home. It has now put more than 19 billion kilometers between itself and the sun. Last week NASA announced that Voyager 1 had become the first man-made object to reach interstellar space.

None of this would be possible without the spacecraft’s three batteries filled with plutonium-238. In fact, Most of what humanity knows about the outer planets came back to Earth on plutonium power. Cassini’s ongoing exploration of Saturn, Galileo’s trip to Jupiter, Curiosity’s exploration of the surface of Mars, and the 2015 flyby of Pluto by the New Horizons spacecraft are all fueled by the stuff. The characteristics of this metal’s radioactive decay make it a super-fuel. More importantly, there is no other viable option. Solar power is too weak, chemical batteries don’t last, nuclear fission systems are too heavy. So, we depend on plutonium-238, a fuel largely acquired as by-product of making nuclear weapons.

But there’s a problem: We’ve almost run out.

Many of the eight deep-space robotic missions that NASA had envisioned over the next 15 years have already been delayed or canceled. Even more missions — some not yet even formally proposed — are silent casualties of NASA’s plutonium poverty. Since 1994, scientists have pleaded with lawmakers for the money to restart production. The DOE believes a relatively modest $10 to 20 million in funding each year through 2020 could yield an operation capable of making between 3.3 and 11 pounds of plutonium-238 annually — plenty to keep a steady stream of spacecraft in business.

When Democrats lose in heavily Democratic districts..

That tells a logical person that those Democrats are wrong on the issues. But you don't want to hear that. Instead you want to indulge in paranoid conspiracy fantasies about the evil "other". In fact you come perilously close to engaging in Eliminationist rhetoric.

There are Democrats who support the RKBA. They are not willing to support Democrats who attempt to abridge that right. All Giron and Morse had to do was vote against the gun bills, and they would still be in office. But they chose not to do that and we see the consequences. Furthermore, both her and Morse refuse to accept that it was their own fault. Politicians who lose seldom do.

I have seen very few politicians ever say:

"I was obviously wrong on the issues, and that is why the voters tuned me out of office."

And you can't say that either. You probably never will able to do so. No matter how many elections supporting an issue costs them, people like you and Morse, still feel "that they are in the right."

Because there are Democrats who support the RKBA.

And are not willing to support Democrats who attempt to abridge that right. All Giron and Morse had to do was vote against the gun bills, and they would still be in office. But they chose not to do that and we see the consequences. Furthermore, both her and Morse refuse to accept that it was their own fault. Politicians who lose seldom do.

I have seen very few politicians ever say:

"I was obviously wrong on the issues, and that is why the voters tuned me out of office."

Reccomendations needed for freeze-dried foods.

Seeing that we might have a very harsh winter (according to the Farmers Almanac) got me thinking that I would like to buy a quantity of freeze dried food for emergencies, such that all I have to add is hot water. Say a 2-4 week supply for 1 adult. I have no children or pets. Any recommendations for / against brands, or places to purchase / not purchase from. I do not have any special dietary requirements.

Seems like Mountain House and Backpacker Pantry are leading brands.

First thing I'm buying when I win the Lottery.

Passion Natural Water-Based Lubricant - 55 Gallon

Price: $1,263.80 ($0.15 / oz)

Free shipping

Lube Pump Included

Shipping Weight: 522 pounds

See Paris by Zeppelin

http://www.airship-paris.fr/en/

A new company is offering tourist flights over Paris. Now how neat is that?

Flights of 30 minutes (250 €), 1 hours (450 €), and 1 1/2 hours (650 €).

Note this is classified as a Zeppelin, not a Blimp, as it is semi-rigid, and the envelope contains ballonets.

I'm willing to bet they will be booked solid. If I could afford to go to Paris, I would ride the Zeppelin SEVERAL times.

http://edition.cnn.com/2013/08/05/travel/paris-zeppelin-airship/

(CNN) -- The sights of Paris are among the most familiar on the planet, but now tourists have a "new" way to see them -- by helium-filled airship.

Airship Paris's zeppelin -- 75 meters long, five stories high and as wide as a four-lane motorway -- made its inaugural commercial flight over a region of villages and woodland northwest of Paris on Sunday.

On clear days, the company says, the Eiffel Tower would be visible in the distance.

The Chateau de Versailles and Seine River are other sights to be seen on the airship's itineraries.


http://www.usatoday.com/story/dispatches/2013/08/07/new-zeppelin-service-airship-paris/2621037/

The Zeppelin NT, which takes off from the Pontoise Aerodrome, 25 miles north west of Paris, flies at a speed of 40 mph at an altitude of 984 feet, nearly the height of the Eiffel Tower.

Passengers are allowed to walk around in the spacious cabin once the seat belts are off. The cabin crew members even open a small window for passengers so landscapes can be viewed unhindered by glass. A large window at the back offers a spectacular 180-degree view. On a clear day, you can see the Eiffel Tower and the skyline of La Defense business district.

But perhaps the most fascinating experience is that of the Zeppelin tracing a shadow on the ground as it passes over houses, vehicles and land contours. The relatively slow speed makes it seem almost surreal – like an amphibious vehicle floating in water. Except that you are floating in the air enjoying what is often said to be the most beautiful city in the world.

Excellent post, I'm glad you reposted this.

I linked to it in one of mine the other day. You did much better than I did.

Thank you.

Apartment tenants told they must get rid of their guns or move.

Castle Rock apartment tenants told they must get rid of their guns

Colorado of all places. You would expect bullshit like this in an anti-gun state, but not in Colorado. Hopefully an attorney or one of the RKBA organizations will step forward and help fight this.

the Oakwood Apartments in Castle Rock, sent out a notice telling all residents to get rid of their guns.

The letter went out to residents on August 1 and says they have until October 1 to comply with updated "community policies."

On page 2 is a brand new provision saying "firearms and weapons are prohibited."

As of October 1, residents cannot display, use, or possess any firearms or weapons of any kind, anywhere on the property.

Welcome to the club of "Blame America First, Last and Always".

The club of Americans who despise America because America isn't as perfect as they think she ought to be. The club of no matter what America does as a nation, America is wrong. If we do nothing we're wrong. If we do something, then we're wrong because we didn't do enough, or we did too much.

If the bomb has been available 6-12 months sooner, or the war lasted 6-12 months longer, then Berlin would have been the first target. Those on the Left who now condemn the use of the bombs on Japan would not have said a thing about their use on Germany. Their attitude would have been that the dirty Fascists got what they deserved.

The Nazis were executing people faster toward the end of the war in the concentration camps because they had perfected the mechanical means of the Holocaust. How many Jews, Poles, Gypsies, homosexuals and others might have been saved if the war in Europe had ended 6-12 months sooner?

Those scientists who worked on the bomb (many of the Jewish refugees from Hitler) did not seem to develop scruples until it was clear that Germany would no longer be the target. They knew for a fact that Berlin, and its civilians would certainly be the main target. They certainly didn’t have any concerns about German civilians being killed.

And for those who cry moral outrage I see no difference between the fire-bombing of Dresden, Tokyo and other Japanese cities and the atomic bombings. Dead is dead.

The Japanese were just as bad as the Nazis. But too many people weep tears for the “victims" of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as if the Japanese did nothing to start the war in Asia. The Chinese suffered between 20-35 million casualties during the Japanese invasion of China (1937-1945). The Japanese forced Korean women into sexual slavery as “comfort women” in field brothels where the women were forced to sexually service, as many as 70 Japanese soldiers a day. In other words these women were raped 70 times a day for yeasr on end. Everywhere the Japanese conquered, they acted like barbarians toward Allied POWS and civilians. The Japanese beat, starved, tortured and executed men and women. They used living human beings as living test subjects in their infamous biological warfare Unit 731.

People these days find it easy to take some moral high-ground when they are not involved in a war to the knife for the future of civilization. Hindsight is easy.

Some Generals and Admirals in the field might have had reservations, but when Truman and his top political and military advisors met, there never was any discussion about NOT using the bomb. As soon as it was ready it was going to be used.

And here's a good post from DU2 Archives which expands on what I posted above.

The grave injustice of COMMEMORATING victims of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

My opinion has always been

That if the bomb has been available 6-12 months sooner, or the war lasted 6-12 months longer, then Berlin would have been the first target. Those on the Left who now condemn the use of the bombs on Japan would not have said a thing about their use on Germany. Their attitude would have been that the dirty Fascists got what they deserved.

The Nazis were executing people faster toward the end of the war in the concentration camps because they had perfected the mechanical means of the Holocaust. How many Jews, Poles, Gypsies, homosexuals and others might have been saved if the war in Europe had ended 6-12 months sooner?

Those scientists who worked on the bomb (many of the Jewish refugees from Hitler) did not seem to develop scruples until it was clear that Germany would no longer be the target. They knew for a fact that Berlin, and its civilians would certainly be the main target. They certainly didn’t have any concerns about German civilians being killed.

And for those who cry moral outrage I see no difference between the fire-bombing of Dresden, Tokyo and other Japanese cities and the atomic bombings. Dead is dead.

The Japanese were just as bad as the Nazis. But too many people weep tears for the “victims" of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as if the Japanese did nothing to start the war in Asia. The Chinese suffered between 20-35 million casualties during the Japanese invasion of China (1937-1945). The Japanese forced Korean women into sexual slavery as “comfort women” in field brothels where the women were forced to sexually service, as many as 70 Japanese soldiers a day. In other words these women were raped 70 times a day for yeasr on end. Everywhere the Japanese conquered, they acted like barbarians toward Allied POWS and civilians. The Japanese beat, starved, tortured and executed men and women. They used living human beings as living test subjects in their infamous biological warfare Unit 731.

People these days find it easy to take some moral high-ground when they are not involved in a war to the knife for the future of civilization. Hindsight is easy.

Finally, I personally think if Truman had not used the bomb out of moral scruples, and Operation Downfall had gone ahead, then America would have suffered terrible casualties. The truth about the bomb would have come out. And I think Truman would have been impeached.
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