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Re: starship-design: Infrastructure in space [was: FTL travel...]

In a message dated 4/25/00 9:18:19 AM, zkulpa@zmit1.ippt.gov.pl writes:

>> From owner-starship-design@lists.uoregon.edu Sun Apr 23 04:00:24 2000
>> From: KellySt@aol.com
>> In a message dated 4/21/00 9:17:50 AM, zkulpa@zmit1.ippt.gov.pl writes:
>> >Of course, you are right, Kelly, when speaking of building 
>> >a single orbital station (or possibly even some tens of them), 
>> >or a single interstellar ship (and unmanned for that - 
>> >you cannot send people for tens of years journey through space without
>> >prior experience with long-living self-sufficient space habitats). 
>> >However, the really permanent presence of mankind in space 
>> >(including long-duration long-range interstellar travel)
>> >cannot be assured without building industrial and settlement
>> >infrastructure in space (meaning outside Earth) as well.
>> >You better start to think how to build it as fast as possible,
>> >instead of finding only excuses for postponing it toward some
>> >"better future". Otherwise, the "better future" never happens...
>> You have it backwards. Unless the space platforems are needed 
>> for something profitable (i.e. returns more value/resources 
>> then it consumes) they will never be built, because they will not 
>> be part of a better future.  Same for the ships - or at least 
>> more then a couple token ships.  A token fleet won't 
>> need the space mining eiather.
>Of course you are right, Kelly, I am saying exactly that!
>And for this very reason I am calling for looking for
>that "something profitable" which may lead to the space
>infrastructure - before thinking seriously about building starships, 
>as they will not be build anyway without that infrastructure.


>> >Sure, if you assume that any installations in space are eventually
>> >Earth-centered, i.e., their only end purpose is to bring 
>> >something useful down here. However, the space infrastructure 
>> >Lee is speaking about will be needed in most part for space 
>> >operations - not for sustaining Earth people, 
>> >but for sustaining people living outside Earth.
>> Sorry, Earth has to pay all the initial bills, and will be suplying 
>> the bulk of the technology and industry for a long time.  
>> The space colonies and starship projects ae utterly dependant on Earth.
>> Unless they can pay their way, they will be shutdown when earth 
>> gets bored just like the Apollo and Russian lunar programs were 
>> as soon as their govs got bored with them.  
>> Unless you are productive, you are a pet.
>At the start, of course. Hence, until they became sufficiently
>independent (which they will strive to, once established...),
>you have two possibilities:
>- to be profitable to Earth;
>- to entertain it so that it is not bored...
>Ehem, so we found additional factor besides profitability -
>thanks, Kelly... 

Entertainment?  ;)

Even now most countries economy is heavily dependant on trade.  Usually they 
dominate in producing certain types of things and buy most of the rest from 
outside.  Can't see space being less so.

>> >> From owner-starship-design@lists.uoregon.edu Fri Apr 21 05:55:56 2000
>> >> From: KellySt@aol.com
>> >> Subject: Re: starship-design: How to build a station.
>> >> 
>> >[...]
>> >> 
>> >> Projects ae with current projected reserves, we can meet all 
>> >> growing oil needs for 200-300 years.  Prices have been going down
>> >> (eratically) for a century, and is likely to keep doing so 
>> >> for another century or so.  If need be, there is LOTS of oil 
>> >> drifting around near earth space.  
>> >>
>> >So you see, infrastructure in space will be needed anyway... ;-)
>> Your asuming we'll be burning oil in 300-400 years?  ;)
>Ahh, here is the catch - we will use it NOT for burning
>(especially in space ...)

That is where the vast bulk of it goes.

>> >> So if you can cut the launch 
>> >> costs of empty frighters enough, you can sell oil from space down
>> >> here.  Global warming folks will scream though.  ;)
>> >> 
>> >One more reason to put the oil-hungry industry in space instead.
>> >You will get an additional benefits: the industry in space
>> >will rather use small amounts of oil to burn. That is, 
>> >unless you are ready to ship up lots of oxygen from Earth... ;-))
>> But the oil hungry homes are down here.  ;)
>They will be in space too - but will not use it for burning...

What else do you expect to be consuming all that oil?

>-- Zenon