Seeing SpaceX’s prototype starship explode after launch reminded me of the necessity of redundancy in launch systems. I think back 10 years when over a short time span when Orbital, SpaceX, and Roscosmos all had anomalies with their cargo missions bound for the International Space Station. Without redundancy in capability, a launch failure in an operational system would have risked the ISS being abandoned.
Now that Moon missions are around the corner, we are reminded that redundancy will be essential to keep exploring. Right now, there are four systems that usable for human space flight to the Moon, SLS, Falcon Heavy, Long March 9, and Starship. So far, none of them have handled crews. We’ll have to wait a while for these systems to mature.
Starship Test Launch
Artemis 1 (SLS) Launch
This week’s discord chat
- Week of Apr 30 2023 [30th April at 1 PM EDT (6 PM GMT), 3rd May at 9 PM EDT (6th 2AM GMT)]
- Redundancy in technology
The Space Environment: Implications for Spacecraft Design — Revised and Expanded Edition by Alan C. Tribble
Lunar Sourcebook: a Users Guide to the Moon edited by Grant H. Heiken, David T. Vaniman, and Bevan M. French
2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke
Destination—Death by Wilber S. Peacock
The New Frontiers Series, Book One: The Ship by Jack L. Knapp
A new novel by Torn MacAlester
The long awaited sequel to Thunder Moon Tussle:
Mask of the Joyful Moon
In the days of grant driven science, it is nice to see the lone independent researcher still making a contribution. Imagine taking this far into the future while checking out this article from the Lunar and Planetary Institute.
This Week’s Short Fiction by Torn MacAlester
This week’s short fiction is the short story Morgan’s Road: