Confusion over space.
The International Space Station represented a space program used for political purposes rather than for the exploration of space. While a space program can appropriately be used for political purposes such as prestige and to serve as an economic stimulus, domestic politics encumbered the International Space Station with a piecemeal design and construction process, which lengthened its assembly and minimized its return. Its cost virtually precluded the human exploration of space and its orbit outside the ecliptic left it poorly positioned to support travel to the Moon or Mars. As a result, the U.S. manned space program was disconnected from the human exploration of space. Then the loss of the Space Shuttle Columbia during reentry on February 1, 2003--the second loss of a Shuttle orbiter--caused the Bush administration to reexamine the space program. Vice President Dick Cheney headed a group that included NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe and representatives from the Pentagon and other agencies. (1) Their planning relied heavily on the example of Apollo. In December 2003, hints of President Bush's new goals appeared, focused on a return to the Moon and a Mars expedition, which some questioned at a time of growing federal budget deficits. (2) With its wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the federal government was having budget problems, and many did not realize how the space program can provide a productive investment in the economy with its technology and new opportunities.
Still, the Bush administration realized the loss of the Space Shuttle Columbia required a stronger response than shaking up NASA management. It required new goals for NASA and replacing the Space Shuttle with new launch vehicles and spacecraft. But when President Bush proposed a return to the Moon and an expedition to Mars, he did not clearly explain his new goals within a plan for the human exploration of space. His program to build new launch vehicles and spacecraft relied heavily on the retirement of the Space Shuttle and cutting back the space sciences for sources of funding.
In 2005, NASA Administrator Michael Griffin acknowledged that the International Space Station and Space Shuttle were mistakes. He said NASA lost its way in the 1970s after Apollo. Regarding the International Space Station, he said, "Had the decision been mine, we would not have built the space station we're building in the orbit we're building it in." (3) Griffin realized a space station should be placed in the ecliptic to support travel to the Moon and planets. Griffin also said the Space Shuttle was excessively expensive. He noted, "We must have means of getting humans into Low Earth Orbit, which is enormously cheaper than the shuttle, if within the confines of NASA's budget we're going to do the things that we want to do." (4) He realized that the Space Shuttle had increased launch costs significantly.
When he presented his plan, President Bush did not confront how the Space Shuttle and International Space Station were mistakes that had crippled the manned space program for decades, whose correction required new funding for new launch vehicles. He did not push a return to the Moon and an expedition to Mars in a campaign for space, which could justify increases to NASA's budget.
After the loss of Columbia, the Bush administration correctly realized that the solution to its problems required new launch vehicles. While NASA managers had made a poor decision when they rejected the opportunity to inspect the Columbia's heat tiles in orbit, the Space Shuttle needed replacement, and the space program needed new goals, which would influence the design of its new launch vehicles.
President Bush said he wanted to see the manned space program accomplish real goals, (5) which NASA lacked for its manned space program. There is a difference between manned spaceflight to Low Earth Orbit and goals of the exploration of the Moon and Mars. In January 2004, President Bush outlined his three main goals for the manned space program. First was the completion of the International Space Station by 2010; second was the development and testing of a Crew Exploration Vehicle by 2008 with its first manned mission no later than 2014; third was a return to the Moon by 2020. (6)
2007 became the target date for the first flight test of a prototype Crew Exploration Vehicle, a capsule that would use an ablative heat shield to reenter the Earth's atmosphere and parachutes to land like the highly successful Apollo command module. A key goal of the Crew Exploration Vehicle was the development of a common spacecraft module for missions to the Moon, Near Earth Asteroids, and Mars. (7) The Crew Exploration Vehicle would be accompanied by the development of a large, powerful booster like the Saturn V. (8) Such a large booster would enable a return to the Moon, trips to Near Earth Asteroids, and Mars.
President Bush noted that the development of lunar resources to provide rocket fuel and air could reduce the cost of space exploration, suggesting that an expedition to Mars should wait for a lunar base to be established to develop lunar resources. (9)
After President Bush announced his new goals in January 2004, a poll showed that three fifths of Americans opposed a return to the Moon and landing on Mars. (10) Yet, there was popular interest in space exploration, seen in the favorable publicity given to the pictures returned by the Hubble Space Telescope, and interest in NASA's Mars rovers. This suggested that President Bush could have done a better job in presenting the new goals for NASA.
In January 2004 NASA said it planned to fund its return to the Moon by retiring the Space Shuttle by around 2010, after NASA had met its commitments to the International Space Station. Later, in 2008, NASA administrator Michael Griffin reiterated that NASA planned to retire the Space Shuttle by 2010 because of its high cost and concerns about its safety, but had nothing to replace it with until 2015 at the earliest, leaving NASA without a way to transport people and cargo to the International Space Station. (11)
President Bush planned to ask Congress for an additional $800 million for fiscal year 2005. He was expected to increase NASA's budget by five percent a year for the next few years, or about $800 million annually. However, this increase was seen as controversial, partly because NASA had spent over five billion dollars to build new manned spacecraft without completing their development. (12) NASA had not done well in building such spacecraft, whether the reusable X-33 or various proposals for a small shuttle or spaceplane to reach the International Space Station or Low Earth Orbit. There was no pressing requirement for NASA to build rockets and spacecraft to replace the Space Shuttle, at lower cost.
Also seen as controversial was NASA's decision to end nonhuman research on the International Space Station so as to focus on sustaining people in space. Since NASA had sold the space station on the basis of science, Congress needed a detailed explanation of what went wrong with the program, and of why a return to the Moon would be different. (13)
Congress wanted someone to blame other than itself. It had not seriously considered how a return to the Moon would be different, which it would be simply because of its geological exploration and advancement of planetary science. To soften criticism of his plan, President Bush reduced his request for $800 million a year in new funding. (14) In other words, he was unwilling to defend his plan. Yet he was spending billions of dollars for ground wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which would not advance the country in science, technology, or its economy. Instead, to fund his new goals, President Bush called for an increase of only $1 billion over the following five years. NASA would obtain the other $11 billion from its five-year budget of $86 billion to fund his new goals by cutting other programs or postponing work. Very little in funding would come from its retirement of the Space Shuttle or reducing the U.S. commitment to the International Space Station. (15) While the number of Space Shuttle flights could be reduced from five to three a year, this would not save much because of the large number of personnel associated with maintaining it regardless of its flight rate. In effect, President Bush proposed reallocating NASA's budget internally to pay for his new goals, slowing down its development of new launch vehicles and cutting back its space science programs.
In effect, when President Bush proposed his new goals with a return to the Moon and a journey to Mars, he did not propose the funding to support them. Instead, he continued to let the International Space Station and Space Shuttle dominate NASA's budget and did not explain how they were mistakes as a reason to justify funding his new goals. He did not tell the American people how the Moon offered more opportunities for scientific research and resources than the International Space Station, which had served as a laboratory to observe the effects of zero gravity on humans for future space exploration, and to conduct experiments. However, NASA had enough information on zero gravity from Skylab to conduct missions to the Moon and Mars. The International Space Station had been designed largely to promote international participation rather than research.
Whereas NASA could use commercial launch vehicles and build spacecraft to supply the International Space Station and perform other missions, President Bush did not fund or manage this well, but left NASA with a hole in its future space launch capabilities. Still, President Bush's new goals stirred interest in the aerospace industry. Aerospace groups were "drooling" over President Bush's goal to resume manned flights to the Moon and to establish a lunar base as a stepping stone for missions deeper into space. Lockheed Martin said, "This is good news for the entire industry." (16)
President Bush had a number of examples available to guide his goals. In the 1950s, books on the human exploration of space were written by Wernher von Braun and Arthur C. Clarke. In the late 1950s, the Air Force planned a lunar base, which provided a set of lessons. In the 1960s, the Apollo space program gave an example of a strong space program. In 1989, under his father's administration, NASA planned a Mars expedition.
A manned space program involves two main goals, the Moon and Mars. While Mars is more inviting for colonization as a follow on to a scientific base and commercial development of its resources, a lunar base is both a step toward Mars with its requirement for a heavy lift booster, and an imperative in its own right, recognizing the Moon as a destination with scientific interest and possessing new resources.
By the late 1950s, the United States had developed the principles for a successful lunar program. Worked out mainly by the Air Force, these included the establishment of a base on the Moon's nearside used for astronomical observations and to observe the Earth and space near the Earth, such as its magnetosphere; and a base on the Moon's far side equipped with radio telescopes. These principles included building underground facilities for a lunar base to provide protection against radiation and temperature extremes, support facilities including recreation, and efforts to make the base self-supporting as much as possible. This could be accomplished by recycling atmosphere and wastes, and growing plants.
In addition, during the 1950s Arthur C. Clarke noted how solar energy can be used to extract oxygen from lunar rock to supply a base with atmosphere and rocket propellant. Ideally, a lunar base should be placed in an equatorial belt both to harness solar energy efficiently and to minimize the need for rocket propellant, similar to how Apollo used landing sites in an equatorial belt to minimize propellant.
Further, Apollo showed how a lunar base has a second set of scientific objectives in the conduct of geological surveys and observations, using manned and unmanned rovers, in addition to serving as an astronomical observatory. But President Bush did not provide a clear rationale for a return to the Moon. He neglected the Moon as a scientific objective in its own right, and confused the development of lunar resources with a requirement for a Mars expedition, just as NASA confused the development of lunar resources with a Mars expedition in 1989.
NASA did not focus on the Moon as a scientific objective in its own right that would feature building a lunar base to serve as an astronomical observatory and to conduct geological studies. Instead, it confused the opportunity that a lunar base brings, for the development of the Moon's resources, with a Mars expedition. Just as the Moon is a scientific objective, the development of lunar resources might well be an objective in its own right. Both begin with support for a lunar base.
NASA's requirement that a Mars expedition use lunar resources imposed a delay in a Mars expedition. A Mars expedition could be launched that would use from one to six launches of a heavy-lift booster like the Saturn V, depending on whether it uses a chemical, nuclear, or ion rocket in its transfer stage, and whether it uses a chemical processor to extract rocket propellant and oxygen on Mars.
NASA also confused indications of water ice at the Moon's poles as a rationale for a lunar base. Apollo taught that a lunar base should be placed in an equatorial belt on its nearside to minimize propellant and to provide clear communications with Earth. Mining water ice at the poles was a secondary development. NASA's desire to put an observatory at the Moon's South Pole could initially use an unmanned observatory.
Whereas President Bush noted how the Moon can be used to develop new technologies for manned spaceflight for more challenging environments, hinting at Mars, the Moon is more challenging than Mars. The Moon is a proving ground for human spaceflight. Still, an expedition to Mars must ultimately prove itself by traveling millions of miles for weeks or months compared to a few days to reach the Moon. President Bush needed to clarify whether his return to the Moon would repeat a series of lunar landings like Apollo or would establish a base. It would seem that because Apollo had given a comprehensive set of lunar landings, the next step was to build a lunar base. President Bush needed to single out the development of a heavy-lift booster as an objective of the highest priority, which could service both a return to the Moon and a Mars expedition. NASA wanted to use Space Shuttle technology for a heavy-lift booster. A heavy-lift booster requires a large, powerful rocket engine. The Saturn V F-1 engine produced 1.5 million pounds of thrust. The liquid-fuel Space Shuttle Main Engine produces only 375,000; three of these engines are clustered at the rear of the Space Shuttle Orbiter. (17)
Since the Space Shuttle Main Engine was not very powerful and the foam insulation for its External Tank was troublesome, NASA needed another design for a heavy-lift booster. To build such a booster, NASA could copy the Saturn V F-1 engine, develop a similar engine, or use a cluster of Space Shuttle solid-fuel boosters. While the use of liquid-fuel rockets is generally preferred, the solid-fuel boosters used for the Space Shuttle were reliable, powerful rockets, whose casing was retrieved and reused. A solid-fuel heavy-lift booster was a competing design, which seemed feasible since the Space Shuttle's solid-fuel booster, of which two were attached to the Space Shuttle, produces 2,650,000 pounds of thrust at sea level, making it a powerful rocket engine, more powerful than the F-1. (18) A heavy-lift booster could use several of these solid-fuel boosters clustered around a payload container and transfer stage.
In addition, a winged reentry vehicle was a key Space Shuttle technology. It was simpler to land at an airfield than to retrieve a capsule from the ocean. NASA could have developed a small shuttle, and redesigned its thermal tiles to uniform sizes or use a more economical heat protection system. Apollo used a space capsule as a shortcut to a shuttle and space station.
Notwithstanding the shortcomings in his program and funding, President Bush's basic goals of a return to the Moon and a Mars expedition were sound. In the 1990s, planetary scientist Paul Spudis argued how the Moon is a desirable destination for the manned space program, a natural laboratory for planetary sciences and geology, a stable platform for astronomical telescopes, and has new resources. The Hubble Space Telescope had shown the value of operating telescopes in space. The Moon's lack of atmosphere makes it suitable for telescopes of all types, those that view in visible light as well as infrared, ultraviolet light, gamma rays, and X-rays. It is an ideal location for a solar observatory. Its far side is an excellent location for a radio telescope.
Spudis noted that the most important factor keeping the United States from the Moon was that it had lost its nerve. Pre-occupied in short-term demands, its leaders had lost sight of preparing for the future. Noting that international cooperation often results in increased costs and delays, a factor that contributed to the expense of the International Space Station, Spudis argued that the space program needs to be part of a broad effort for commercial and industrial activity by the private sector rather than NASA. (19)
Contrary to some views, a return to the Moon and landing on Mars was not cost prohibitive, but could be met within NASA's budget if it did not have the Space Shuttle and International Space Station, and managed its new programs effectively. (20)
Apollo revealed that the Moon was a place of scientific interest, which also possesses new resources. Americans needed to know they had reasons to return to the Moon. But while they waited, other countries were setting their sights on the Moon for its energy resources, especially the mining of helium-3, which is deposited in the upper regolith by the solar wind. ("Regolith" is the loose rock and soil above bedrock.)
Developments Outside the United States
When Neil Armstrong became the first man to step on the Moon in 1969, he showed how the Moon, as the Earth's nearest neighbor, is the first destination of a manned space program, a fact that still reverberates in space programs around the world. (21) A decade before President Bush's 2004 announcement of a return to the Moon, in 1994 the Clementine lunar probe reopened the door to the Moon, the first U.S. return to the Moon since Apollo.
After Clementine mapped the Moon's mineralogy and suggested water ice existed in permanently shadowed craters at its poles, scientific interest in the Moon resurged. To take advantage of this interest, in 1998 NASA launched the Lunar Prospector that discovered indications of water ice at the poles, and measured its gravitational field. (22)
As a result, other countries began to plan lunar probes. This interest was both scientific, seeing the Moon as a gateway to understanding the geological history of the Earth and solar system, and commercial, seeking to explore its new resources, including helium-3, a non-polluting fuel for fusion reactors rare on Earth. Some scientists believe the Moon has enough helium-3 to satisfy the Earth's energy needs for thousands of years. (23) While fusion reactors are considered a Holy Grail, safe to operate, generating a minimum of radioactive waste, but very difficult to build, making them futuristic in a twenty to fifty year time frame, mining the Moon for helium-3 to fuel a high-temperature fusion reactor was considered both important and realistic enough by various countries to stir their interest.
In addition to the prospect of mining helium-3, which is deposited by the solar wind that largely consists of hydrogen and helium, another possibility for using the Moon is found in the construction of solar cell farms, which take advantage of the Moon's lack of atmosphere to run solar cells at a higher power level than found on Earth. This offers a commercial prospect to use lunar materials to manufacture the solar cells on the Moon in solar farms and beam the energy to Earth. Some estimates suggest that just one percent of the Moon's solar energy could replace fossil fuel power plants on Earth. (24) These commercial and scientific prospects for new energy resources ushered in a new round of lunar exploration.
In 2004, Europe's SMART-1 lunar probe arrived in lunar orbit. Noted for its low cost, miniaturization, and autonomous flight control, it took months to reach the Moon using an ion rocket, which reduced the weight of its propellant. (25) It mapped the Moon's minerals and searched for water ice, and peaks of eternal light. (26) Near the North Pole it discovered areas of perpetual sunlight and perpetual darkness. This meant that a polar base could deploy solar cell arrays at a peak of eternal light to provide a constant supply of energy. (27)
In the wake of frustration with the International Space Station, in 2008 it was reported how Europe was planning a backup route to the exploration of the Moon and Mars, and developing plans for a lunar base outside of the U.S. effort to return to the Moon. (28)
In 2009, Germany was debating whether to launch a lunar probe, which it believes will be an investment that secures German expertise in aerospace, science, and robotics, and creates high technology jobs. It believes the Moon is of the highest importance in determining the future of people on Earth, and a joint lunar mission with other European countries or the United Sates is possible, and a lunar base is a next step. Some Germans feel a lunar probe is important even in times of economic crisis and tight budgets. (29)
In 2010, the German Aerospace Center had designed an experimental spacecraft that will reenter the Earth's atmosphere. Called the Shefex 2, it uses a sharp, angular design and actively cooled heat shield, and was being tested in a wind tunnel at Goettingen at speeds of up to Mach 10. Based on the successful Shefex 1 (Sharp Edged Flight Experiment) flight test, the Shefex 2 is scheduled for launch from the Woomera testing ground in Australia in 2011. It will reach an altitude of 200 kilometers and land under automatic control. (30) Where the U.S. Space Shuttle has more than 25,000 heat resistant tiles with different shapes, which makes their refurbishment expensive, the Shefex uses heat tiles with a more uniform shape to reduce their maintenance cost. Its sharp edged, multi-faceted shape improves its aerodynamic performance. It will have almost the same aerodynamic properties of the winged Space Shuttle, and be able to land at a site in Germany with pinpoint accuracy. (31) The Shefex 2 uses a process known as effusion cooling to cool its heat shield. During reentry, gas flows through pores in the heat tiles to form a cool, protective layer around its body to stop hot atmospheric gas from making direct contact with it. It is 12.6 meters long, has small wings and canards, and will use a parachute to land. (32)
In addition to this effort by Germany, in 2010 the European Space Agency was preparing to demonstrate the reentry of a capsule as a step toward a crew-return vehicle. It was studying its Atmospheric Reentry Demonstrator, a classic Apollo capsule design that in 1998 made a suborbital flight, and other projects such as one with NASA for an X-38 lifting body. (33) This reentry program features sophisticated configurations and non-ablative heat shields. It will study flaps, and shock wave and boundary layer transitions, in minimizing high temperature effects. It plans to launch a 450 kilogram demonstrator in 2011, which will feature a blunt nose, conical body, and four flat sides. It will climb to an altitude of 200 kilometers and reenter the atmosphere at speeds of up to 5 km/s, and maneuver using four flaps at its base. (34)
Another demonstrator will use a lifting body, 5 meters long and 2 meters wide that weighs 1.8 metric tons, which includes two control flaps in the lower tail, and steering rockets. It will reach a top speed of 7.7 km/s from an altitude of 120 kilometers, and splash down in the water using a parachute. Other research includes cooled leading edges, ceramic tiles, and other thermal protection materials. (35)
These European efforts to build reusable vehicles that can reenter the atmosphere and land with a high degree of accuracy are a step toward a manned space program. They can serve as supporting elements to a lunar base and space station.
A highly industrialized nation, Japan has developed a modest space program used to launch satellites and probes with hopes for a lunar base. Its perspective on space is partly fueled by its desire to develop new energy resources and apply its expertise in humanoid types of robots, in addition to scientific leadership.
In 1990, Japan launched a lunar flyby mission. (36) In 2007, it launched its first major lunar probe, the Selene, and it plans other probes, followed by a manned lunar landing in 2020 and lunar base. (37) Orbiting the Moon at an altitude of 60 miles, the Selene carried a suite of 14 instruments and two sub-satellites that searched for hydrogen, water ice, volatiles, and minerals, using visible and near infrared imagers, and also mapped subsurface structures using radar, and used other instruments to study its magnetic and gravity fields, and conduct other research. (38) As is common with the United States, Europe, India, and Russia, this research information is published openly.
The two sub-satellites were used to map the Moon's gravity field. As one sub-satellite tracked the Selene, the other relayed data to Earth to detect slight variations in its orbit. The data revealed the Moon's farside has a thicker crust than the nearside. On its farside, gravitational anomalies are closely related to topography. Lower elevations, largely meteor impact craters that are about 100 to 1,000 kilometers in diameter, have a negative anomaly. On the nearside, areas such as the Sea of Serenity have a positive anomaly at the center, explained by a thinner crust and the volcanic uplift of dense material from the mantle. (39) Another finding, using its advanced gamma ray spectrometer, was that the Moon has uranium as well as thorium, potassium, oxygen, magnesium, silicon, calcium, titanium, and iron. (40) In 2009, Japan crashed the Selene into the Moon, ending the mission.
Later in 2009, Japan put the finishing touches on its H-2B booster, which will launch supplies to the International Space Station. Because this is able to launch a heavier payload than Japan's H-2A booster, it will boost Japan's competitiveness in the space launch market. (41) But to launch a manned spacecraft to the Moon, Japan needs to build an even larger booster.
In September 2009, JAXA (the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency) used the H-2B to launch a cargo freighter to the International Space Station. Eventually, it plans to modify the freighter to carry astronauts. (42) The cargo freighter is aimed at obtaining a share of the transportation of cargo to the International Space Station after the Space Shuttle is retired. To dock it, astronauts on the space station used their robotic arm. In comparison, the cargo freighters launched by Russia and Europe use a laser guidance system. (43)
By 2020, Japan hopes to land a two-legged robot on the Moon, followed by a manned mission. (44) In a related development, Honda said in 2009 that it has built a robot steered by human brain waves, and it has built two-legged robots. (45)
Japan has studied Solar Power Satellites since 1998. In 2009, it picked a group of companies and researchers to develop them, planning to launch a solar power satellite in space with a 10 megawatt capacity around 2020, followed by a 250 megawatt prototype. A full scale Solar Power Satellite will use several square kilometers of photovoltaic cells placed in geostationary orbit. Mitsubishi Industries, a participant, said it will "help solve the problems of energy shortage and global warming." Unlike solar cells on Earth, it will collect solar energy continuously, without being obscured by the atmosphere. The satellite will beam the energy to Earth using clusters of lasers or microwaves. The energy will be collected by large parabolic antenna located at sea or in an isolated area. Researchers plan to build a 1,000 megawatt system, equivalent to a medium-sized nuclear reactor, which will produce electricity at a lower cost than currently. (46)
Japan has the technological expertise and a sound understanding that space has resources that have practical implications for Earth and has plans for a lunar landing and base. If pursued diligently, its space program can accomplish its goals.
Compared to Europe or Japan, India has a strong space program as a result of its ballistic missile program, which has sought to build long-range ballistic missiles to deter China and to build ballistic missile interceptors. An emerging superpower, India sees its space program as an issue of prestige and scientific leadership. It hopes to prosper through the use of satellites and the development of new resources in space.
India stands poised to assume a leading role in space. Aspiring to a manned space program, it sees the development of resources on the Moon, including helium-3 for fusion reactors, as a way to address its relative scarcity of coal, oil, and natural gas, and concern over global warming (47)
On October 22, 2008, India launched the Chandrayaan 1, its first lunar probe, on a two-year mission to map the Moon's minerals and topography, and to eject an impact probe at it from lunar orbit. (48) To map its minerals, it used high resolution imagery in visible, near infrared, and X-ray wavelengths. (49) With the Chandrayaan 1, India became the third Asian nation to launch a lunar probe, after Japan and China. Weighing 1,304 kilograms and equipped with 10 instruments, it studied the Moon at an orbital altitude of 100 kilometers. Five of its instruments were built in India. The other five came from Europe and the United States, a result of India's cooperation. (50) The Chandrayaan 1 was to create a detailed three dimensional map of the Moon's surface, investigate its chemical composition, and look for water. (51) While at the end of August 2009 India lost radio contact with it, it was a success. (52) ISRO, the Indian Space Research Organization, said it achieved 90 to 95 percent of its objectives. (53)
One of the Chandrayaan 1's findings, reported in September 2009, was a confirmation of the mineral anorthite, rich in calcium plagioclase. This endorsed the magma ocean hypothesis, which states that a large amount of energy liberated during the Moon's formation caused its surface to become completely molten, letting the plagioclase rise to the surface because of its lighter density. (54) (Calcium plagioclase is a common lunar mineral. Other lunar minerals such as ilmenite, rich in titanium, hold more interest for commercial mining.)
A surprise finding, also reported in September 2009, was that water ([H.sub.2]O) and hydroxyl (OH) exists on the Moon's surface in a thin layer. Data obtained using its impact probe revealed that the entire lunar surface is hydrated during some part of the lunar day, although with just a small amount of water. The prevailing opinion had been that the Moon did not have water, except in permanently shaded craters at its poles. (55) Scientists believe that during the lunar day a thin layer of water, a few molecules thick, forms on the Moon's surface as hydrogen ions from the solar wind interact with oxygen-rich minerals. The water forms in the morning, is substantially lost by midday, and reforms as the Moon's surface cools in the evening. Such hydration could occur elsewhere in the solar system. (56)
Another discovery reported in March 2010, using data from NASA's miniature synthetic aperture radar, was that more than 40 craters at the Moon's North Pole, which range in size from one to nine miles in diameter, are filled with water ice. It is estimated that the craters hold at least 600 million metric tons of water ice. According to Paul Spudis, the lead investigator, "the Moon is an even more interesting and attractive scientific, exploration, and operational destination than people had previously thought." (57)
The Chandrayaan-1 also discovered a miniature magnetosphere around the Moon, and ion fluxes at night. The Moon's surface reflects about 15 to 20 percent of the protons in the solar wind. (58) It detected an aggregation of magnetic anomalies in the southern hemisphere of the Moon's farside deflect the solar wind, which keep the solar wind from reaching the surface. (59)
In 2009, India said it planned to launch the Chandrayaan 2 in 2013, and the Chandrayaan 3 in 2015. (60) The Chandrayaan 2 will feature a lunar orbiter, lander, and rover, which will analyze the lunar soil. (61) These lunar probes are forming a steppingstone for India's aspirations to develop and colonize space. In 2010, Abdul Kalam, a former president of India, told a group of Indian scientists they should consider the Earth, Moon, and Mars as an economic complex for the expansion of humanity into space, and a means to promote India's social and economic development. (62)
In February 2010, the Indian Space Research Organization announced it plans to send two astronauts into space in six or seven years. (63) In March it received a major increase in funding to build a rocket to launch a two-man crew into orbit. (64) Later in March it announced plans to develop a winged reusable rocket as a reusable launch vehicle. (65) As a prelude to a manned mission, India said it plans to orbit an unmanned crew module in 2013. It plans to send two astronauts into orbit for about a week. Its crew module has been designed with life support systems, thermal protection, and emergency crew escape system. (66)
India recognizes that its space program reflects its political will to put resources into it. While India and Japan have similar capabilities to mount a space program as China, China has taken the lead because it has a longer history of a space program, which is closely tied to its military and ballistic missile program. (67)
Backed by a profound political commitment, China's space program began in the 1950s with the return of Hsue Shen Tsien, a member of the team of U.S. scientists who investigated the V-2 after World War II and took his master plan for space directly from Wernher von Braun. Tsien's legacy includes China's space and ballistic missile programs. (68)
Although China's manned space program was lost during the Cultural Revolution of the 1970s, it retained its ballistic missile forces. It built about 20 ICBMs to hold U.S. cities hostage and built a number of IRBMs to threaten U.S. forces in the Western Pacific. It also retained its Long March launch vehicle for its unmanned space program.
In 1989 China's manned space program took a marked turn with the rise of Jiang Zemin as the President of China, official leader of the Chinese Communist Party and Chairman of the Central Military Commission, who supported the June 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown. An electrical engineer by training and a technologist, Jiang supported a manned space program. He saw it as an avenue for military expansion, as well as of scientific advancement and economic growth, a view the PLA supported. Around this time, Chinese military analysts began to take to heart some of the lessons of the Cold War where the Strategic Defensive Initiative played a pivotal role in the collapse of the Soviet Union. These lessons included the importance of ballistic missile defenses, which gave the United States an asymmetric means to offset the Soviet advantage in ballistic missiles, the importance of technology and research, and the value of space-based defenses.
At that time, the Chinese Communist Party was very concerned over its survival, upset by the 1989 Tiananmen Square pro-democracy demonstrations which had threatened its legitimacy. It was also concerned by the failure of Soviet Communism, which came to a speedy end in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, and saw the political disintegration of the Soviet Union into Russia and various republics.
In addition, much surprised by speed and one-sided victory of the U.S.-led coalition forces in the 1991 Persian Gulf War, Chinese military analysts took to heart the lessons of that war where U.S. satellites gave U.S. and coalition forces a one-sided advantage that was uncontested by the Iraqis. As a result, believing that many U.S. advantages in a modern war can be undermined by attacking its satellites, China's military space program includes means to physically attack satellites, using anti-satellite interceptors, miniature space mines, and ground-based lasers.
China's space program, run by the People's Liberation Army, is based on the intrinsic importance of space as a military theater of operation and an extension of sovereignty, with new energy resources. It is directly competitive with the United States in its manned space program, especially its return to the Moon, which President Bush planned to achieve in 2020. In addition, the 2001 Space Commission chaired by former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld noted the heavy U.S. reliance on satellites, and that China's growing military prowess in space could compromise U.S. military capabilities. In addition, China launched its first lunar probe, and announced plans for other probes that would land on the Moon.
This keen competition extended to military space programs. After China demonstrated the successful hit-to-kill interception of a defunct weather satellite in January 2007, using a modified DF-21 IRBM, in February 2008 the United States launched a modified SM-3 ballistic missile interceptor that successfully intercepted and destroyed a defunct reconnaissance satellite whose orbit was decaying into the upper atmosphere.
In 2008, one analyst noted how the high U.S. reliance on space presents a vulnerability that the PLA could exploit. He noted, "The PLA envisions the possibility of conflict in space and they're preparing for it." He added that outsiders do not completely understand Chinese thinking on space warfare. (69)
When China launched its third manned space mission in September 2008 on the Shenzhou-7, some observers noted it released a companion satellite called the BX-1, attached to the Shenzhou spacecraft and released by a spring. Weighing between 30 and 40 kilograms, the satellite orbited the Shenzhou-7, returning over a thousand images. The BX-1 later approached within close proximity to the International Space Station, suggesting it may have been a prototype satellite inspector. (70)
This competition continued into the Obama administration. For example, several days after the U.S. Air Force launched its X-37 orbital test vehicle in May 2010, China reportedly launched a hypersonic "prototype space fighter," apparently connected to its Near Space Vehicle Research Laboratory and Chengdu Aircraft Design Institute. It was unclear whether this involved its "Shenlong" spaceplane project. (71)
China has focused on developing satellites. In July 2010, a Taiwanese defense report noted the number of Chinese satellites will surpass 60 by the end of 2010: 14 Jianbing and Leidian military surveillance satellites; 15 Shenfong and Fenghuo military communications satellites and Xinnou broadcasting satellites; and 16 Beidou navigation satellites to improve the accuracy of its weapons. (72) In August 2010 a new Chinese satellite, the Shi Jian (SJ-12) launched in June 2010, was detected and tracked in a deliberate collision with two older satellites, the SJ-6F and twin SJ-6E satellites launched in 2008, nearly 600 kilometers above the Earth. U.S. military data showed an anomaly in the orbit of SJ-6F, which could have been caused by physical contact with the SJ-12 that now orbits close to the SJ-6F and SJ-6E. Some analysts believe the collision could be attributed to a space docking maneuver, but had clear implications as an anti-satellite test. (73) It could have been a docking maneuver for a parasitic satellite, a type of very small satellite placed next to a larger host satellite, which could be activated against the host at a later time.
China's military space program includes the construction and launch of satellites for communications, navigation, reconnaissance, Earth observation, and ocean observation to detect naval forces, including submarines. To extend its political influence internationally, China also builds and launches satellites for various countries.
China's Space Program. China started its space program in 1956. In 1958 it opened its first launch site at Jiuquan in its remote northwest. By 1960 it developed its first space rocket with Soviet assistance. In 1964 it launched a sounding rocket to an altitude of 44 miles. In 1970, it launched its first satellite, making China the fifth country to launch a satellite. In 1980, reports indicated China was preparing a manned spaceflight mission, but fiscal constraints apparently ended it, partly a result of the Cultural Revolution. (74)
In 1984, China opened a second launch site at Xichang in the southwest province of Sichuan. Four years later, it opened a third site at Taiyuan in its northern Shanxi province, closer to Beijing. (75) The Jiuquan center launches its manned spacecraft. In October 2003, its launch of the Shenzhou-5 put its first man in space. By 2009, its three launch centers had placed over 100 satellites into orbit. (76)
China announced in 2009 that it had started construction of the Hainan space launch center near Wenchang City on the northeast coast of Hainan Island. Scheduled to be completed by 2013, the Hainan launch center will have the most southerly location, only 19 degrees north of the equator. This will let rockets that travel to the Moon and planets carry larger payloads. The Hainan launch center will be used mainly to launch satellites in Geosynchronous Earth Orbit, large satellites, space stations, and deep space probes. (77) The Hainan center is expected to replace Xichang in the launch of satellites in geosynchronous orbit and other missions, which will save on fuel, extending their service life by two or three years in addition to allowing the launch of larger payloads. The center covers 20 square kilometers, and includes a command center, assembly plant for rockets, and theme park. In addition, there will be no danger of falling debris, and large rockets can be easily transported to it by sea. (78)
China's plan to take advantage of Hainan Island's southerly location to launch large payloads to the Moon was similar to early planning in the U.S. space program during the 1950s that expected to use Johnston Island as a launch site. Located southwest of Hawaii at 17 degrees north latitude, rockets launched from Johnston Island could carry larger payloads to the Moon and planets than those launched from Cape Canaveral. However, the United States did not follow through on this early planning.
In 1992 China adopted its secretive Project 921, which included the development of the Shenzhou manned spacecraft and replaced its earlier program. In 1996, China signed an agreement to acquire space technology from Russia. The next year, two Chinese astronauts completed a year of training at Russia's Star City, and that year China opened a mission control center in Beijing. (79)
In 1998, China announced the development of its Shenzhou manned spacecraft (based on the Russian Soyuz space capsule), and it launched its first of these, unmanned, the following year. In 2001 it launched a second Shenzhou that carried some small animals, who landed in a capsule by parachute. In 2002, it launched its third Shenzhou, unmanned, and later in 2002 launched its fourth. It then announced it would build a space station. Finally, on October 15, 2003, China launched its first man into space on the Shenzhou 5. Two years later, it launched two astronauts onboard the Shenzhou 6. (80) Then in September 2008 China launched the Shenzhou 7, which carried three astronauts who performed China's first spacewalk. The spacewalk was an important step towards its goal of building an orbital laboratory and space station. (81) The Shenzhou can seat up to three people, and has an orbital, reentry, and service module. (82) On unmanned missions, the orbital module carries antenna or high resolution cameras for military reconnaissance. (83)
To improve communications with the Shenzhou 7, China launched a data relay satellite in Geosynchronous Orbit. (84) Communications and tracking was supported by five of six Yuanwang satellite tracking ships and a space telemetry network with about 20 ground stations. (85)
The Shenzhou 7 appeared to mark a change in China's plans for a space station. Before, it expected to build a space station that weighed about 20 tons. (86) It was developing the Long March 5 rocket with a payload of about 25 tons to launch it, its largest launch vehicle. (87) The Long March 5 will burn kerosene and liquid oxygen. (88)
In 2009 China unveiled its Long March 5-D launch vehicle, its largest booster with a launch weight of 675,000 kilograms. Its first launch is expected around 2014, probably from its new Hainan launch center. It will be able to put a 25 ton satellite into Low Earth Orbit or a 12 ton satellite into Geosynchronous Orbit. (89)
After the Shenzhou 7, China planned to launch a small orbital laboratory called the Tiangong, meaning castle or sky fortress, instead of a full-size space station. It plans to launch the Shenzhou 8 and 9 as unmanned missions to dock with it, and the Shenzhou 10 with three astronauts. It expected to launch the Tiangong around 2009, but this was delayed. (90) The Tiangong will provide a "safe room" for Chinese astronauts to live and conduct scientific research in zero gravity. It will weigh about 8.5 tonnes, and can operate unattended. (91) It appears to consist of a short, cylindrical pressurized module, with not much more internal volume for the crew than a Shenzhou spacecraft. Its service module has two solar panels, a propulsion system, and other gear, and is slightly smaller in diameter. It uses a Russian style docking system with three guidance petals to lock with an identical docking collar. It also has a cylindrical device pointing outwards from the rear of the pressurized module, which may be an optical telescope, probably to observe the Earth. It has a large parabolic dish to communicate with a satellite in geostationary orbit like the Shenzhou. (92)
According to Rick Fisher, a specialist on the Chinese military, the Tiangong will service military missions. Photos indicate the first Tiangong will have two cylindrical cavities between the crew and service sections that could carry imaging gear or micro satellites to release in orbit. He noted how Shenzhou orbital modules have been fitted with imaging or electronic intelligence packages. (93) In March 2010 China said it planned to launch the Tiangong 1 in 2011 and the Shenzhou 8 to carry out its first space docking maneuver with it. It expects to launch the Shenzhou 9 and 10 in 2012, which will also dock with the Tiangong 1. (94)
China's Lunar Program. China views the Moon with scientific interest and as new territory, which it seeks to possess in competition with the United States, Japan, and India. Like the Soviet Union and United States in the space race, China started its lunar program with the launch of unmanned probes, expecting to follow them with a manned lunar landing and lunar base.
China launched its first lunar probe, the Chang'e 1 (Moon goddess), in 2007, first in a series of lunar probes. Equipped with a stereo camera, interferometer, gamma and x-ray spectrometers, a laser altimeter, microwave detector, solar particle and low energy ion detectors, its mission was to make a three-dimensional survey of the Moon's surface, analyze its elements, and explore the conditions of space near the Moon. (95)
Ouyang Ziyuan, Chief Scientist for China's lunar exploration project, noted two years later that the Chang'e 1 achieved four scientific goals. Orbiting the Moon for nearly 18 months, it formulated two- and three- dimensional maps of the Moon's surface, assisted by a laser altimeter, using three laser beams to collect data at more than 9 million points to make a stereoscopic map. Second, it examined the chemical composition of the Moon's surface and minerals. (96)
Third, the Chang'e 1 used microwave technology to measure the depth of the lunar regolith. A special focus was placed on finding out how much helium-3, a crucial fuel for nuclear fusion, is found on the Moon. (97) Fourth, the Chang'e 1 probed and recorded the Moon's environment, including electromagnetic features and the solar wind. While China's plan for a manned lunar landing is not yet set, with its date estimated from 2020 to 2030, it plans to launch the Chang'e 2 lunar probe, and the Chang'e 3 lunar spacecraft equipped with a lunar rover before the end of 2013. (98)
Ouyang noted how the U.S. Apollo program had been worth its cost. It employed around 400,000 people, 20,000 companies, and more than 200 universities, costing $25.6 billion. But it guided almost all the cutting edge technologies in the 1960s and 1970s, and created an economic value amounting to 17 times its cost. (99)
China believes that burning just 10 tons of helium-3 a year in fusion reactors can meet its future energy needs. Some scientists estimate the Moon has at least a million tons of helium-3. (100) Its annual power needs could be met by consuming 8 tons, equivalent to 220 million tons of oil or 1 billion tons of coal. It believes nuclear fusion power will be commercialized in the next 50 years. (101)
To support its communications with the Chang'e 1, China built a radio telescope 40 meters in diameter, and used four other large radio telescopes. (102) Its series of lunar probes can be described as orbiting, landing, and returning. After the controlled impact of the Chang'e 1 on the Moon in March 2009, China revealed it plans to launch the Chang'e 2, which will orbit the Moon and test key technologies for a soft landing. A backup to the Chang'e 1, the Chang'e 2 will orbit closer to the Moon and be equipped with better sensors such as a higher resolution Charge Coupled Device (CCD) camera. (103) Compared to the Chang'e 1 its camera will have a resolution of 7 meters instead of 120 meters, which its lower orbit will improve to about one meter. (104) China launched the Chang'e 2 in October 2010, which will orbit the Moon at an altitude of only 15 kilometers, the lowest lunar orbit yet. (105)
The Chang'e 3 will make a soft landing near the Moon's equator in 2013, and use a nuclear isotope generator to provide energy during the lunar nights. The fourth probe, planned for 2017, will return samples of the Moon's soil to Earth. The Chang'e 3 will land in the Bay of Rainbows, a lava plain, remarkably flat and featureless, allowing for a large margin of error in conducting a landing. (106) The Chang'e 3 and Chang'e 4 may represent a series of lunar landers and rovers similar to how the Chang'e 2 suddenly appeared in public view. (107)
China was considering a lunar landing between 2025 and 2030. (108) In 2009, however, budget constraints apparently put a brake on China's plans for a manned lunar mission. Yet, its manned space program has been a huge boost to its national pride. (109) At first, China planned a manned lunar landing around 2020, the same time President Bush planned a similar landing, but this has slipped to sometime before 2030.
In 2010 the discovery of water on the Moon appeared to affect plans for a telescope that the Chang'e 3 will place on the Moon in 2013. It is designed to land on the Moon with an ultraviolet light telescope onboard, which will operate on the Moon's sunlit surface powered by solar panels. Chinese scientists ultimately plan to build a lunar observatory. Astronomers have dreamed of placing an observatory on the Moon since the 1950s because if the lack of atmosphere. A radio telescope would ideally be placed on its farside, shielded from TV and radio signals from Earth. (110)
China wants to develop the Moon, especially to mine helium-3, but believes Mars is the real prize because of its prospects for human colonization. (111) While claiming it is not in a space race with the United States, China is determined to become the dominant power in space. (112)
The first country to launch a man into space, Russia is a key participant in the International Space Station, launching cargo vessels and manned spacecraft to it on a regular basis. With its regular activity in space launches and the launch of the Glonass navigation and Earth observation and communication satellites, it remains well positioned to land on the Moon. As reported in 2007, Russia plans a manned lunar landing by 2025 and a manned landing on Mars in 2035. Its leading rocket company, Energia, sees an economic incentive in a lunar landing with the mining of helium-3 and tourism. (113) Surprisingly, Russia, not the United States, was the first country to commercialize space tourism.
In 2005, the President of Energia, Nikolai Sevastianov, said that space tourism will be profitable and profitable activities in space will include mining helium-3 on the Moon. He believed Energia can enter the market for space tourism using the Clipper, a low-cost shuttle lifting body with reduced g-loads for travel to the International Space Station. Reusable, it will be more economical than Soyuz. Piloted by two cosmonauts, it will carry up to 1.5 tons of cargo and four passengers, and leave its propulsion and utility modules in orbit for reuse. It was planned for launch in 2012. (114) While it was later postponed, it showed efficient planning.
Sevastianov noted a successful manned space program requires a space station for research and a transfer point for lunar flights and to assemble trips to Mars. He believed Russia can conduct a manned lunar landing using Soyuz technology as early as 2012-2014 for $2 billion, and Russia can start mining the Moon as early as 2020, explaining: (115)
We must do this within the lifetime of our generation, first of all because of the limited nature of energy resources. One way or the other, but we will have to go beyond our planet in the search of new environmentally friendly power sources. A good candidate is isotope helium-3 to be used for nuclear power. It is available on the Moon. The Earth's reserves of helium-3 are so negligible that their industrial use is absolutely out of the question. According to some estimates, our natural satellite contains no less than 1 million tons of helium-3, which can fully meet the entire Earth's power demand for a period of more than 1000 years. A mission to Mars is to be an international project. Mars is a potential new habitat for humans. The problem of closed space, which is what the Earth is for us now, will sooner or later lead to conflicts in the civilization's development. The manned space flight is needed to solve this problem. Besides, a mission to Mars will allow us to develop advanced technologies which will make it possible to fly long-distance missions to the depth of the solar system, to energy resources of Jupiter and Uranus. (116)
He estimated the cost of mining helium-3 and its transport to Earth to be between $40 to $200 billion dollars. (117)
The Clipper was at the heart of Energia's planning for a lunar transportation system. (118) It would replace the Soyuz for taking crews and supplies to the International Space Station. (119) In 2006, the Russian space agency Roscosmos changed its mind about the Clipper, deciding to upgrade the Soyuz, which "has proved its worth in over forty years of operation by being very reliable and relatively cost-effective in taking a crew member to an orbiting station." (120) One commentator noted the "Soyuz and its ability to stride across centuries," and said, "No one disputes that Russia is a great space power, and no one will ever doubt it as long as we throw out the deadwood of 'unknowns' from our programs." (121)
In 2008, Russia announced it would build a new spaceport, develop new launch vehicles (the Angara family of launch vehicles), build a space station in polar orbit around 2020, land on the Moon around 2025, build a lunar base, and possibly conduct a Mars expedition. (122)
Russia currently uses two space launch centers, Baikonur in Kazakhstan in Central Asia, which it has leased from Kazakhstan since the fall of the Soviet Union, and Plesetsk in northwest Russia. In 2009, it started construction on the new Vostochny space launch center in its Far East, expected to be completed in 2018. It will include seven launch pads, including two for manned missions, and two for freighters. (123) The Vostochny space launch center, in the Far Eastern Amur Region, will employ 20,000 to 25,000 people and ensure Russia's launch of manned spacecraft currently carried out at Baikonur. Its first launch is scheduled for 2015. (124)
As reported in 2010, test launches of Russia's new Angara rocket are expected to begin in 2013. Angara rockets will carry payloads of between 2,000 to 40,500 kilograms into Low Earth Orbit, and will become the core of Russia's launch vehicles, replacing several existing systems. They are being built by the Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center. (125) Angara rockets will reduce Russia's dependence on the Baikonur space center, letting it launch heavy payloads from more northerly locations, Plesetsk or Vostochny. Khrunichev is developing the Angara 7 as a heavy lift booster, which can launch payloads of 45 to 75 tons, for which Russia has no equivalent in its current rocket fleet. (126)
Russia's Central Machine Institute will in 2010 have returned to its program of building space shuttles and large launch vehicles. Its new rockets will have a payload of over 24 tons. Tests of the new rocket will start in 2015, with commercial launches by 2018. Russia is working on a rocket that can launch a payload of over 100 tons. It also plans to build a new manned spaceship and reusable boosters. The Soviet Buran Space Shuttle made only one flight, unmanned, in 1988. (127)
This work in large rockets was fueled by the announcement in 2009 by Russia's Space Agency, Roscosmos, which said it will select a design for a rocket to carry cosmonauts to the Moon within a decade. Its primary requirement will be to carry 20 to 23 tons into Low Earth Orbit, a payload about three times as much as the Soyuz capsule, which as been in service since 1967. The first test launch is expected in 2015, with a manned launch in 2018. (128)
In 2009, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev praised his country's plan to build a nuclear-powered spaceship. The Chief of Roscosmos, Anatoly Perminov, said the preliminary design of a nuclear spaceship could be ready by 2012. Taking nine years and 17 billion rubles (US$600 million) to build, the nuclear spaceship, he said, would put Russia ahead of foreign competitors in space. It would have a megawatt class nuclear reactor instead of the reactors used in Soviet satellites that produced just a few kilowatts of power. (129) Later in 2009, President Medvedev said Russia will prioritize the development of nuclear technology in spacecraft. It plans to use nuclear technology on satellites, then cargo spaceships, and finally manned spacecraft that travel to Mars. (130)
Russia allocated nearly $17 million for 2010 to develop a nuclear-powered spacecraft. It expects to complete the design by 2012. According to Anatoly Perminov, Chief of Roscosmos, at least another $580 million will be needed for further development in the coming decade to build and flight test a nuclear rocket. Nuclear propelled spaceships could be used for flights to Mars and other planets, and to establish a base on the Moon. Perminov noted that the high efficiency of nuclear propulsion is key to maintaining a competitive edge in the space race. (131)
In 2009, Russia announced it pushed back the launch of its satellite probe to Phobos, one of Mar's two moons, the other moon being Deimos, until 2011. The delay was caused from the addition of a probe from China, which, weighing 110 kilograms, overloaded the mission, which then required more tests and a Zenit instead of a Soyuz rocket. (132) The Russian Phobos-Grunt spacecraft will land on Phobos and fly back to Earth with soil samples. (133)
Russia announced in 2010 that it is preparing to launch a spacecraft to study the Moon in 2012. The craft will be equipped with a neutron generator to study the Moon's surface and water content. (134) While information is published, the apparent duplication of lunar probes reflects a sense of nationalism. While Russia had not launched many probes to the Moon in recent years, its development of a new heavy-lift booster and nuclear rocket will give it a strong position to conduct a manned lunar landing, build a space station, lunar base, and conduct a Mars expedition.
Iran realizes how its ballistic missiles give it a means to access space, using them as sounding rockets and launch vehicles for satellites, starting with the intermediate-range Shahab-3. In time, it may build launch vehicles powerful enough to launch large satellites and astronauts into space. Rich in oil and natural gas and focused on its buildup of missiles, Iran has the potential to mount a space program of note. While Iran may not have the commitment and economic strength to mount a manned space program that reaches the Moon in the near future, it realizes that a manned space program carries immense prestige, and a space program is valuable in the launch and development of satellites for military and civilian uses.
Iran's development of a multi-stage launch vehicle would lend itself to an ICBM, an item of considerable interest to U.S. defense planners because Iran's nuclear power program is believed to be capable of providing it with an atomic bomb.
Iran launched its first satellite in February 2009, a communication satellite called the Omid, and announced it is developing another seven satellites, and plans to send its first man into space by 2021. (135) As a prelude to manned spaceflight, it plans to send animals on suborbital flights to an altitude of 100 miles, beginning in 2010 or 2011. (136) In 2010 Iran announced it plans to send a man into space by 2019, earlier than first announced, seeing it as a blow to Western powers pressing it over its nuclear program. (137) While a man in space would not constitute a manned space exploration reaching the Moon, it would carry prestige, and give it a stepping stone for a future lunar program.
A late comer to Asia's space race, South Korea previously sent 10 satellites into space using launch vehicles from other countries. Industrially and technologically advanced, it plans to build its own launch vehicles. In 2007, it announced plans to launch a lunar orbiter by 2010 and a probe to land on the Moon five years later. (138)
Plans often encounter delays. In 2010, South Korean and Russian experts were investigating the second launch failure of South Korea's Naro-1 launch vehicle, assembled in South Korea from Russian components. A year earlier, South Korea had attempted to use the Naro-1 to launch a satellite, but its nose cone did not open properly. The Russian rocket is a new vehicle still under development, whose performance has not been fully tested. (139) Interestingly, South Korea had turned to Russia for help in building the Naro-1. U.S. policy on the nonproliferation of ballistic missiles generally prohibits it from assisting allies in developing space launch vehicles, which can be used as ballistic missiles with relatively modest adjustments to payload and guidance.
As other countries were setting their sights on the Moon as a source of helium-3 for fusion reactors, the United States ignored this valuable byproduct easily obtained by extracting the gases found in the Moon's upper regolith. After the United States adopted The Outer Space Treaty of 1967, it virtually renounced the development of the Moon's resources. With its subsequent confinement of manned spaceflight to Earth Orbit by way of the Space Shuttle and NASA's confusion in developing the Moon for a Mars expedition when it was unnecessary, the United States had conspicuously lacked a plan for space and a lunar base, where the mining of helium-3 would occur as a byproduct of mining the upper lunar regolith for all its gases and volatiles, and iron rich meteorites.
Compounding the lack of interest in mining the Moon for helium-3 was the lack of U.S. initiative in developing new energy resources even though it had known since the 1950s that it needed to develop new energy resources. This was seen in its disinterest toward the proposal made in 1968 by Dr. Peter Glaser to build Solar Power Satellites. No one bothered to build an experimental Solar Power Satellite, or invest in high efficiency solar cells.
In addition, by the 1970s the United States had lost interest in building nuclear power plants. This led also to a disinterest in nuclear fusion, which was proving very difficult to accomplish. In fact, nuclear fusion had become a Holy Grail, partly because the United States had not engaged in a systematic program for fusion research. Its later construction of a fusion ignition facility for nuclear weapons research, which relied on high-energy solid-state lasers, was poorly run, which added to disinterest in nuclear fusion.
As a result of all this, when the Bush administration proposed a return to the Moon, it omitted the mining of helium-3 as a national goal, which could occur simply as a byproduct of running a scientific lunar base. Notwithstanding the disinterest of the United States, countries such as China, India, and Russia (as we have seen) were interested in mining it. This reflected the seriousness that some countries view global warming and their future energy supplies, and advance planning to use a space program to mine it.
There are three potentially useful fusion reactions. Each involves deuterium (D) or heavy water, which can be separated from water in virtually unlimited quantities. The deuterium is added to tritium (T), deuterium, or helium-3 ([He.sub.3]), and burned at a high temperature. In order of their ignition temperature, from low to high, they are: (140)
1) D + T = [He.sub.4] + n + 17.6 MeV
2) D + D = T + H + 4.0 MeV (50%) = [He.sub.3] + n + 3.3 MeV (50%)
3) D + [He.sub.3] = [He.sub.4] + H + 18.4 MeV
(MeV stands for million electron volts)
The deuterium-tritium reaction is the easiest to ignite, but releases about 85% of its energy in high-energy neutrons, making a containment vessel radioactive and lose strength over time. Such a reactor may need to replace its containment vessel every few years. (141) The reaction using deuterium-deuterium, which has a higher ignition temperature, produces fewer high-energy neutrons, so its containment vessel has a longer time of service. (142) But its products of heat and electrons may complicate the design of its reactor with two types of conversion into electrical energy. The helium-3 reaction requires a higher ignition temperature by an order of magnitude, but its electrons may be converted directly into electricity. Although its side reactions produce neutrons, the containment vessel may be expected to retain its integrity for a longer time, perhaps 30 years, and have only moderate level of radioactive waste. (143)
Whereas fusion research in the United States reached the doldrums, partly from the confusion resulting from cold fusion, the European Union decided to mount a sophisticated research effort to build a very large tokomak (a magnetic confinement vessel shaped like a doughnut where plasma circulates) in an international consortium called ITER. While this very large tokomak is only for research purposes, it is a significant step toward building a prototype fusion reactor that will produce electricity on a commercial basis..
Led by the European Union and especially France, the international consortium includes China, India, South Korea, Russia, and the United States. Construction of its tokomak at Cadarache in southern France started in 2007, with completion expected in 2017. The tokomak will be nearly 30 meters tall and weigh 23,000 tons, and is expected to begin operation in 2018. (144)
ITER intends to produce about 500 MW (megawatts) of power for up to 500 seconds in the form of heat, which a later commercial reactor could use to operate a turbine. It will develop technologies for a commercial fusion reactor and test different materials for a confinement vessel to absorb neutrons. (145) Where ITER uses a tokomak, another approach to a controlled fusion reaction injects electrical energy or uses high-energy lasers pointed at a small pellet of fuel that heat or implode it to a point where fusion occurs. This type of fusion reaction was also proposed to power a rocket, as well as a reactor used to generate electricity.
In comparison to ITER, which burns deuterium and tritium as the lowest temperature fusion reaction and does not burn helium-3, the reaction that burns helium-3 requires a higher ignition temperature. While more difficult to build, reactors that burn helium-3 will be cleaner, since they produce fewer neutrons that create radioactive residue.
U.S. Lunar Program
After President Bush announced a return to the Moon, NASA did not take full advantage of what the Apollo program had taught. That program had given a stepping stone to the Moon through its site surveys, landings sites, and methodology of landing in an equatorial belt on the Moon's near side to minimize propellant, and through its example of a heavy-lift booster and lunar spacecraft. An equatorial site is also an excellent location to harness the sun's energy for a lunar base. Mining water ice at the South Pole was a secondary development, requiring automated equipment more than a lunar base.
NASA seemed to vacillate between a new series of landings or building a base at the Moon's South Pole, when it could have focused on building a lunar base at one of the Apollo landing sites, which had been surveyed in detail. It could use lunar probes to stir up scientific interest, and then advance the construction of a lunar base by launching construction robots and equipment using one of the boosters available to it instead of waiting for a heavy-lift booster. In fact, NASA began to plan a series of probes to map and study the lunar surface, determine landing sites, and identify resources such as oxygen, hydrogen, and metals, and study its geology, physics, and the biological responses of human beings to lunar gravity. (146) NASA already had enough information to identify landing sites. Still, the probes represented a renewed interest in the Moon. NASA planned a large probe to search for water ice at the South Pole, and studied proposals for lunar probes that were low cost.
One low-cost proposal, expected to cost less than $20 million, involved placing a spacecraft built by SpaceDev at the Moon's L1 Lagrangian point. Weighing 100 kilograms, the craft would demonstrate new technologies, measure radiation near the Moon, and use a gravity tunnel in the Interplanetary Superhighway, where gravity fields are offset, to reduce its fuel requirements. (147) The Lagrangian points are regions of gravitational equilibrium, special solutions to the "three body problem" of celestial mechanics. There are five such points for the Earth Moon system, which minimize station keeping. Astronomers are increasingly using Lagrangian points to place telescopes in space, and are conceptually similar to a gravity tunnel. (148)
By 2007, budget cuts had slowed the U.S. lunar program. (149) But NASA was still developing a Crew Exploration Vehicle like Apollo, and a heavy-lift booster that could launch up to 125 metric tons into Low Earth Orbit. (150) Called the Ares V, some astronomers wanted to use it to launch telescopes to be placed at the L2 Lagrangian point, which has an unobstructed view of deep space. (151)
Reflecting the slowdown, in 2007 a coalition of nearly two dozen U.S. aerospace companies told Congress that NASA's budget needed to be increased to avoid a risk of losing U.S. leadership in space. Congress had cut NASA's budget by $670 million, imposing a six month delay in the new Orion spacecraft and Ares booster. (152) Because of low funding, by early 2009 NASA was at the stage of seeking design concept proposals for its heavy-lift booster. (153) The United States lacked a coordinated space policy between military and civilian launch needs. A heavy-lift booster could help the Space Based Laser, NASA's return to the Moon and its space station, and commercial users of space. It could launch large telescopes, and orbital transfer vehicles to collect space junk and defunct satellites in Geosynchronous Earth Orbit. Similar to how the Bush administration yielded to international and domestic pressure to terminate the Space Based Laser in part because it required building a heavy-lift booster, six years after President Bush announced a return to the Moon, NASA had done little to build a such a booster. This was a serious delay.
In October 2009, NASA successfully launched a prototype Ares I, which used a modified Space Shuttle solid-fuel rocket booster for its first stage. Designed to launch the Orion space capsule to the International Space Station and Moon, the Ares I is 327 feet high, unusually tall and slender. The flight test saw the successful separation of the booster from a simulated upper stage. The Ares I was expected to reach service in 2015. (154)
The prospect of a lunar base stirred research in other areas. In 2008, NASA started to explore the use of a small nuclear reactor, about the size of an office trash can, to supply a lunar base with 40 kilowatts of electricity. With the Moon's lack of water and air, such a reactor will need to dissipate its heat by radiation, using a large surface area. While this radiative cooler may be designed like a tower, it will be different than the water cooling towers commonly used by power plants on Earth. (155)
In 2008, NASA investigated the use of sulfur to serve as a binding agent for a waterless concrete, using lunar soil as aggregate. (156) It examined heating the regolith to a high temperature and found it could form a brick with nearly the strength of concrete, making it a desirable building material. (157) Most importantly, in that same year, NASA investigated ways to extract oxygen from the lunar regolith. Field demonstrations in Hawaii showcased a hydrogen reduction system that can generate one to two metric tons of oxygen a year, roughly the amount a lunar outpost with four to six people would consume in a year. (158) The following year, NASA investigated the design of small robots about the size of riding lawn mowers to prepare a landing site for a lunar outpost, hardening its surface and building a berm around it to minimize the dust stirred up by takeoffs and landings. (159)
NASA was finally paying attention to the development of robotic construction equipment. This type of equipment can help smooth out small craters, move boulders, and grade surfaces. After grading the regolith, a mobile heater could harden its surface and cut grooves into it so it does not become as smooth as glass, but has traction for vehicles and astronauts.
NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center has recently demonstrated how microwaves can extract water from moondust. Microwave heating causes the water to sublimate into water vapor, which can be collected and condensed into water. The heating could extract 95 percent of the water in just two minutes. (160)
In June 2009, an Atlas V launched NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter that was to orbit the Moon at an altitude of only 31 miles (50 kilometers), and also launched its Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) that will look for water ice. (161) A low cost mission that used off-the-shelf components modified for use in space, LCROSS was to search for water ice in a permanently shadowed crater near one of the poles. After it established its orbit, its Centaur upper stage rocket would strike a crater, creating a plume of debris. LCROSS was to fly through the plume four minutes later, collecting and relaying data before striking the Moon's surface to create a second debris plume that was analyzed. (162)
In October 2009, LCROSS launched its Centaur upper stage at the permanently shadowed crater Cabeus near the Moon's South Pole. Striking the crater at a speed of more than 1.5 miles per second, LCROSS observed the impact and its debris plume, and then struck the crater itself while watched by observatories on Earth. (163) The impacts released about twenty-four gallons of water from the crater, which was 20 to 30 meters wide. (164)
That same year, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter began to transmit its first images of the Moon. Its instruments include a low resolution wide angle camera, a high resolution narrow angle camera, a neutron detector to look for enriched hydrogen, an indicator of water ice, a cosmic ray telescope to measure the Moon's radiation environment, a laser altimeter to build 3-D topographic maps, a radiometer to map the Moon's surface temperature, a miniature radio frequency radar to look for subsurface water ice, and an ultraviolet light imager that will use starlight to look for surface ice and take pictures of permanently shaded areas. (165) Data from the Orbiter showed that the lunar highlands have more variation in their chemical composition than previously thought, and detected minerals richer in sodium than the typical anorthosite crust. In several locations, it found minerals that have undergone extensive magma processes, such as quartz and feldspar, and have an abundance of thorium. (166)
In summary, after President Bush announced his return to the Moon in 2003, during the next six years NASA launched two lunar probes to look for water ice and conducted research helpful for a lunar base, but did very little to build rockets and spacecraft for a manned mission. After it retired the Space Shuttle, NASA had no real means to launch a man into space.
The Obama Administration
Inheriting a manned space program that had not been well run for a return to the Moon, President Obama vacillated, seeking to give the manned space program new goals with a visit to an asteroid while abandoning the Moon as a realistic destination. NASA did not rule out a return to the Moon, neither was it engaged in a program to return to it. (167) Under President Obama, the manned space program lacked any real goals for human space exploration. Industry supported expenditures to develop commercial access to the International Space Station, NASA's planning apparently had devolved to Mars and the asteroids, treating them as distant destinations, while largely omitting the Moon. (168)
There were reasons for this shift. If NASA kept on course to the Moon, the public and Congress could demand results. By shifting focus to Mars and asteroids while treating them as distant destinations, NASA could now claim it was focused on a manned space program while avoiding anything substantial toward conducting manned spaceflight to these destinations.
In contrast to President Bush, President Obama generally funded NASA to a slightly higher degree, but minimized its goals and planning. He did not, however, adjust the spending to allow for the excessive expense of a program for a return to the Moon or of the International Space Station. Right after taking office, the new Obama administration approved $18.7 billion for NASA for fiscal year 2010, an increase of $900 million, and its economic stimulus bill provided another billion dollars. It agreed to retire the Space Shuttle by the end of 2010 and develop the Ares boosters, expected to be ready by 2015, while purchasing rides to the International Space Station from Russia. (169)
In May 2009, President Obama ordered NASA to review its Ares rocket and Orion crew capsule for "possible alternatives." The programs had spent six billion dollars in two years, while their initial budget of $28 billion had ballooned to at least $44 billion. (170)
Unusually slender, the Ares I was 320 feet long with an average diameter of 14 feet. For comparison, the Delta IV is 225 feet long with an average diameter of about 17 feet. The Saturn V was 363 feet long with an average diameter of 33 feet. (171) With a slender solid-fuel rocket at its core, the Ares I entailed problems in stacking stages and payloads on top of it. NASA could have asked industry to develop a class of liquid-fuel boosters similar to the Saturn V. And the programs had expended substantial funds without significant test flights.
President Obama had a panel examine the space program to make recommendations. In this case, his blue ribbon panel was headed by Norm Augustine, a former head of Lockheed Martin, a giant in the aerospace industry. In June 2009, the Augustine Commission held its first public hearing on the U.S. human space exploration program, which was filled with briefings on alternative approaches to the Ares rocket and Orion spacecraft that would be faster and less expensive to develop, and more capable. (172) In August, the Commission concluded that a manned mission to Mars was too risky, and a return to the Moon by 2020 would not happen without a large boost in NASA's budget, leaving the International Space Station as the only viable goal for the country's manned space program. (173) The Commission said that developing a new spaceship to replace the Space Shuttle and large rockets to reach the Moon would require about $3 billion more a year, and the only human space program affordable under NASA's existing budget was an enhanced space station, which could be used to seed a commercial passenger launch market. (174)
NASA was spending about half its $18 billion annual budget on human spaceflight on the Space Shuttle, International Space Station, and developing new launch vehicles and spacecraft under the Constellation program. The Augustine Commission said a return to the Moon by 2020 was doomed, since its 10-year budget of $108 billion had been cut by about $30 billion; NASA had already spent $9 billion to build rockets, a capsule and lunar landers like those used by Apollo. (175)
The panel concluded that even with additional funds, the Moon may not be the best choice for human missions, saying more economical and attractive to the public would be flights to the asteroids and other destinations. Augustine said, "We think to go direct to Mars with today's technology and money is riskier than we would want to be associated with." (176) Because NASA had no funding in place after 2015 for the space station, a $100 billion project of 16 nations, the panel recommended adding $2.5 billion into NASA's budget between 2011 and 2014 for commercial launch services to the space station. NASA planned to pay Russia for transport to the space station. (177)
In the opinion of this author, Norm Augustine and his panel represented all that was wrong with the aerospace industry, unable to provide leadership or manage costs for the manned space program, even though years ago his own company had developed a low cost proposal for a trip to Mars that would have cost a fraction of the nine billion dollars NASA had already spent. Reflecting the Augustine Commission report, in January 2010 President Obama abandoned the return to the Moon, to focus in his proposed budget for 2011 on the development of commercial services to ferry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station. It was for this purpose that he increased NASA's budget by six billion dollars over the next five years. (178) With the stroke of a pen, President Obama canceled the country's remaining hope of becoming a space-faring nation, abandoning the development of a heavy-lift booster and spacecraft that could reach the Moon. He epitomized the go-nowhere policies that had limited the U.S. space program since the end of Apollo. (179)
These go-nowhere policies were prominent in the findings of the Augustine Commission. It did not highlight the alternatives that were available to build a heavy-lift booster and manned spacecraft that were faster, cost less, and more capable than in NASA's Constellation program for which it had testimony.
In February 2010 Franklin Chang-Diaz, a former astronaut, noted that a journey from Earth to Mars could take just 39 days using the VASIMIR ion rocket that was under private development with minimal NASA support. The VASIMIR rocket creates a high temperature plasma channeled by a magnetic rocket nozzle. Scaled models of it had been tested. The next major step involves orbiting a spacecraft with a prototype 200 kilowatt engine in 2013. (180) The rocket is powered by a nuclear reactor. For propellant, it can use hydrogen, deuterium, helium, xenon, or argon fed into the engine and heated with radio waves until the gas disassociates into plasma. A second stage injects more radio waves to raise the temperature of the plasma from hundreds of thousands to millions of degrees. Magnets then control the expulsion of the plasma. (181) Neither NASA nor the Augustine Commission suggested using an ion rocket for a manned mission to Mars even though rocket scientists had known since the 1950s that ion rockets are far more efficient for a journey to Mars.
Responding to criticism of his cancellation of a return to the Moon, in April 2010 President Obama announced a plan to orbit astronauts around Mars within the next three decades. Regarding the Moon, he said, "We should attempt a return to the surface of the moon first, as previously planned. But I just have to say, pretty bluntly here, we've been there before." He added that the United States would invest three billion dollars in research into a heavy- lift booster, with the design to be finalized by 2015. (182) However, President Obama's new space program faced criticism from 27 of the biggest names in U.S. space exploration, including three Apollo astronauts: the legendary Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the Moon; Jim Lovell, commander of Apollo 13; and Eugene Cernan, last man to walk on the Moon in the Apollo 17 mission. The astronauts urged President Obama to reconsider his plan, warning that the United States will slide into mediocrity in space. (183)
In essence, the U.S. space program is to focus on unmanned probes. NASA would retire the Space Shuttle by 2010, using Russian rockets to ferry astronauts to the International Space Station until later in the decade it switched to a private system. And it would extend the operation of the International Space Station from its planned retirement in 2016, adding five more years. (184)
Boeing has said, regarding a heavy-lift booster, "We believe the United States should be on a clear path to accelerate the development and production of this critical system, along with a deep space capsule. Both of these vehicles are essential to any deep space exploration mission. We have the technology and the people to commence development of these vehicles now." (185)
In June 2010, a bipartisan group of 62 Congressmen pressed for the immediate development and production of a heavy-lift launch vehicle that can be used for manned spaceflight to the Moon or deep space exploration. (186) The next month, the White House issued a new space policy that promised to reach out to international partners focused on reducing space junk and on other areas of scientific cooperation. It prompted NASA to use commercial launch vehicles to shuttle crews and cargo to the International Space Station. A heavy-lift booster was omitted. (187)
Summary and Conclusion
In the early 1960s, President Kennedy strongly supported the U.S. space program and gave it a sound goal of landing a man on the Moon by the end of the decade. Backed by sound technical judgment and his own intuition, his decision reflected the will to win the space race, and resulted in the highly successful Apollo lunar landings. Four decades later, President Bush attempted to recapture the success of Apollo by proposing a return to the Moon. His decision correctly recognized how the U.S. manned space program needed new goals and new launch vehicles and spacecraft that could reach the Moon. But he did not fund his program or provide good leadership that would make the space program a priority. As a result, in six years NASA spent nine billion dollars with a single flight test of the Ares I to show for its return to the Moon. Its vision was a lunar base placed at the Moon's South Pole that would mine water ice, when it should have known that the Moon was a scientific objective in its own right.
Lost was the planning of the Air Force in the late 1950s to establish an underground lunar base that would support observatories to observe the Earth and space and build a radio telescope on the Moon's far side, which could make unprecedented observations. Lost was the lesson of Apollo that showed how the Moon is of geological interest, and an initial base should be placed in an equatorial belt on its nearside.
Inheriting a weak space program, President Obama weakened it further by abandoning the return to the Moon and heavy-lift booster, given unsound advice by the Augustine Commission. At the same time, a new space race was shaping up between Europe, India, China, and Russia for the Moon and the mining of helium-3. By 2010 the United States had fallen behind in its return to the Moon and practically abandoned the human exploration of space, confining itself to the International Space Station. Still, it had compelling reasons to return to the Moon, which offers unparalleled opportunities for scientific observation, and new resources.
(1) AFP, "US again aiming for Moon--as a pit stop to Mars and beyond," SpaceDaily.com, January 10, 2004.
(2) "Bush Wants To Send Americans Back To The Moon," SpaceDaily.com, January 9, 2004.
(3) Traci Watson, "NASA administrator says space shuttle was a mistake," USA Today, September 28, 2005.
(4) Phil Bernardelli, SPX, "Griffin Defends NASA Space Exploration Vision," SpaceDaily.com, June 6, 2006.
(5) "NASA Completes 'Successful' Year of ELV Launches," SpaceDaily.com, December 11, 2003.
(6) AFP, "Key excerpts from Bush space speech," SpaceDaily.com, January 14, 2004.
(7) "Bush Wants To Send Americans Back To The Moon," Op. Cit.
(8) "NASA returns to Apollo in quest for perfect craft," The Observer (UK), Taipei Times, January 12, 2004.
(9) AFP, "Key excerpts from Bush space speech," Op. Cit.
(10) AFP, "Three-fifths of Americans oppose Bush's mission to moon, Mars," SpaceDaily.com, January 18, 2004.
(11) UPI, "NASA Ponders Future without Shuttles," SpaceDaily.com, March 8, 2008.
(12) "Bush Wants To Send Americans Back To The Moon," Op. Cit.
(14) AP, "Bush wants foothold on the moon," Taipei Times, January 16, 2004.
(15) Jeffery F. Bell, "Plan 3 from Outer Space: The Bush Budget Switch," SpaceDaily.com, January 14, 2004.
(16) AFP, "Aerospace industries drooling over Bush's moon-Mars program," SpaceDaily.com, January 14, 2004.
(17) Wayne Lee, To Rise From Earth (New York: Checkmark Books, 2nd Edition, 2000), p. 154.
(18) Ibid., p. 158.
(19) Paul D. Spudis, The Once and Future Moon (Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1996), pp. 245-253.
(20) AFP, "US set to aim for Mars, Mars and beyond," SpaceDaily.com, January 9, 2004.
(21) Prabhavati Akashi, SPX, "A Giant Leap towards the Moon," Spacedaily.com, July 15, 2005.
(25) Bernard Foing, ESA, "Exploring the other Globe," SpaceDaily.com, February 22, 2005.
(26) ESA, "SMART-1 Search for Lunar Peaks of Eternal Light," SpaceDaily.com, April 18, 2005.
(27) AFP, "European probe sniffs out a site for Lunar Outpost," SpaceDaily.com, September 6, 2005.
(28) Frank Morring, Jr. and Michael A. Taverna, "Redundant Systems," Aviation Week & Space Technology, October 6, 2008, pp. 38-39.
(29) UPI, "Germany may target the Moon by 2015," SpaceDaily.com, August 13, 2009.
(30) SPX, "DLR Tests New Sharp-Edged Spacecraft," SpaceDaily.com, May 13, 2010.
(33) Michael A. Taverna, "From Dream to Reality," Aviation Week & Space Technology, July 5, 2010, pp. 40-41.
(36) AP, "China, Japan Race for the Moon," Taiwan Security Research, August 25, 2007.
(37) AFP, "Japan's lunar probe enters orbit as space race heats up," SpaceDaily.com, October 5, 2007.
(38) Bradley Perrett, Kazuki Shiibashi, and Frank Morring, "First Wave," Aviation Week & Space Technology, July 30, 2007, pp. 46-48.
(39) SPX, "Japan Maps Lunar Far Side Gravity Field," SpaceDaily.com, October 13, 2008.
(40) SPX, "First conclusive signature for lunar uranium," SpaceDaily.com, June 30, 2009.
(41) AFP, "Japan unveils new space rocket, hoping to boost prestige," SpaceDaily.com, February 17, 2009.
(42) AFP, "Japan sends first cargo spacecraft to ISS," SpaceDaily.com, September 11, 2009.
(43) AFP, "Japan's cargo ship docks at International Space Station," SpaceDaily.com, September 18, 2009.
(44) Jay Alabaster, AP, "Japan aims for walking robot on the moon by 2020," Washington Post, April 3, 2009.
(45) AFP, "New robot 'steered by human thought:' Honda," SpaceDaily.com, March 31, 2009.
(46) AFP, "Japan eyes solar station in space as new energy source," SpaceDaily.com, November 8, 2009.
(47) AFP, "Asian spacefarers race for the moon," SpaceDaily.com, September 25, 2007.
(48) AFP, "India launches first moon mission," SpaceDaily.com, October 22, 2008.
(49) Prabhavati Akashi, Op. Cit.
(50) RIA, "India and Russia complete design of new lunar probe," SpaceDaily.com, August 18, 2009.
(52) AFP, "India loses contact with first moon craft: space agency," SpaceDaily.com, August 29, 2009.
(53) DPA, "India loses contact with moon orbiter, mission closes," Taipei Times, August 31, 2009.
(54) PTI, "Chandrayaan-1 Confirms Lunar Magma Ocean Hypothesis," SpaceDaily.com, September 3, 2010.
(55) SPX, "Deep Impact and other Spacecraft Find Clear Evidence of Water on Moon," SpaceDaily.com, September 25, 2009.
(57) AFP, "NASA radar finds ice on Moon's north pole," SpaceDaily.com, March 1, 2010.
(58) PTI, "Chandrayaan Instrument Finds Magnetosphere around Moon," SpaceDaily.com, November 17, 2009.
(59) SPX, "Magnetic anomalies shield the Moon," SpaceDaily.com, September 27, 2010.
(60) SPX, "Space Debris a Concern in Satellite Launch," SpaceDaily.com, December 23, 2009.
(61) RIA, "India and Russia complete design of new lunar probe," Op. Cit.
(62) SPX, "Earth, Moon and Mars as a single economic entity," SpaceDaily.com, January 8, 2010.
(63) PTI, "India Plans to Send Two Astronauts into Space," SpaceDaily.com, February 23, 2010.
(64) PTI, "India Space Budget Gets a Major Boost," SpaceDaily.com, March 1, 2010.
(65) PTI, "India Developing Winged Reusable Rocket," SpaceDaily.com, March 30, 2010.
(66) T. S. Subramanian, PTI, "India Eyes Manned Space Capability," SpaceDaily.com, July 14, 2010.
(67) AFP, "Ambitious Chinese Program Could Trigger Asian Space Race," SpaceDaily.com, October 14, 2005.
(68) Martin Sieff, UPI, "China's Taikonauts Fulfill Tsien's Vision," SpaceDaily.com, October 13, 2005.
(69) Paul Eckert, Reuters, "U.S., China urged to work out space security regime," September 19, 2008.
(70) Peter J. Brown, "China gests a jump on US in space," Asia Times Online, October 25, 2008.
(71) Peter J. Brown, "China has good reason to stay quiet," Asia Times Online, May 4, 2010.
(72) Hsu Shao-hsuan, "PRC's preparations to attack Taiwan accelerate: report," Taipei Times, July 19, 2010.
(73) Peter J. Brown, "A secret rendezvous for China in space," Asia Times Online, September 21, 2010.
(74) AFP, "A chronology of China's space programme," SpaceDaily.com, September 23, 2008.
(76) XNA, "China Begins New Space Center Construction," SpaceDaily.com, September 15, 2009.
(78) XNA, "China's Fourth Satellite Launch Center to be Built in Hainan," SpaceDaily.com, October 30, 2009.
(79) AFP, "A chronology of China's space programme," Op. Cit.
(81) AFP, "Chinese space flight blasts off, crew plan space walk," Taipei Times, September 26, 2008.
(82) AFP, "Facts on China's Shenzhou Spacecraft," SpaceDaily.com, October 12, 2005.
(83) Morris Jones, SPX, "More Room for Shenzhou," SpaceDaily.com, October 20, 2005.
(84) Morris Jones, SPX, "Good Grades for Shenzhou 7," SpaceDaily.com, September 29, 2008.
(85) XNA, "China's Latest Space Mission Finishes Rehearsal," SpaceDaily.com, September 23, 2008.
(86) XNA, "China to Build a Space Station after Shenzhou 7," SpaceDaily.com, April 27, 2006.
(87) AFP, "New rocket to take China to moon still awaiting approval," SpaceDaily.com, November 3, 2005.
(88) Morris Jones, SPX, "Storm in a spacecraft," SpaceDaily.com, April 6, 2006.
(89) Andrei Chang, Jeff Chen, UPI, "Analysis: China reveals new super rocket," SpaceDaily.com, April 9, 2009.
(90) Morris Jones, SPX, "China sets sights on first space station," SpaceDaily.com, October 3, 2008.
(91) AFP, "China plans space station with module launch in 2010," SpaceDaily.com, March 1, 2009.
(92) Morris Jones, SPX, "China's Mystery Spacelab," SpaceDaily.com, January 20, 2010.
(93) Peter J. Brown, "A secret rendezvous for China in space," Op. Cit.
(94) XNA, "China to conduct maiden space docking in 2011," SpaceDaily.com, March 15, 2010.
(95) XNA, "China's lunar probe completes 2nd orbital transfer," SpaceDaily.com, October 26, 2007.
(96) China Daily, "Moon May Light Man's Future," SpaceDaily.com, August 17, 2009.
(100) XNA, "China's Unmanned Lunar Program Stirs Domestic Debate," SpaceDaily.com, June 28, 2004.
(101) XNA, "Chang'e-2 satellite's camera resolution reaches one meter," SpaceDaily.com, January 14, 2010.
(102) XNA, "China Completes Radio Telescope for Moon-Probe Project," SpaceDaily.com, April 24, 2006.
(103) XNA, "China to Launch Second Lunar Probe in 2010," SpaceDaily.com, November 30, 2009.
(104) XNA, "Chang'e-2 satellite's camera resolution reaches one meter," Op. Cit.
(105) AFP, "China launches second lunar probe," SpaceDaily.com, October 1, 2010.
(106) Morris Jones, SPX, "China Scouts Moon Landing Sites," SpaceDaily.com, October 4, 2010.
(107) Morris Jones, SPX, "Four Chinese Lunar Landers Mooted," SpaceDaily.com, October 6, 2010.
(108) XNA, "China considering manned lunar landing in 2025-2030," SpaceDaily.com, May 27, 2009.
(109) AFP, "China tools up for Asian space race," SpaceDaily.com, July 12, 2009.
(110) AFP, "Water on Moon is bad news for China's lunar telescope," SpaceDaily.com, September 21, 2010.
(111) AFP, "Space could be Chinese by the year 2050, experts say," SpaceDaily.com, October 16, 2003.
(112) Martin Sieff, UPI, "China's Taikonauts Fulfill Tsien's Vision," Op. Cit.
(113) AFP, "Russia plans manned Moon mission by 2025," SpaceDaily.com, August 31, 2007.
(114) SPX, "An Interview with President of RSC Energia," SpaceDaily.com, December 14, 2005.
(117) AFP, "Russian Says Moon and Mars Space Targets by 2030," SpaceDaily.com, April 12, 2006.
(118) SPX, "Russian Kliper Space Plane Design Completed," SpaceDaily.com, March 14, 2006.
(119) SPX, "Russia's Kliper Shuttle to be launched in 2015," SpaceDaily.com, January 26, 2006.
(120) Andrei Kislyakov, UPI, "Kliper Has Too Many Unknowns," SpaceDaily.com, August 4, 2006.
(122) Andrei Kislyakov, RIA, "Russia to get a new space port," SpaceDaily.com, September 11, 2007.
(123) RIA, "Russia to Start Construction of New Space Center in 2011," SpaceDaily.com, September 8, 2009.
(124) RIA, "Russia Eyes Bigger Slice of Global Space Market," SpaceDaily.com, March 29, 2010.
(125) RIA, "Russia to Start Testing New Angara Rocket in 2013," SpaceDaily.com, July 16, 2010.
(127) XNA, "Russia to Review Its Space Shuttle Project," SpaceDaily.com, June 28, 2010.
(128) UPI, "Russia picking moon rocket design," SpaceDaily.com, March 16, 2009.
(129) AP, "Russia unveils spaceship plans," Taipei Times, October 30, 2009.
(130) XNA, "Russia Goes All Out to Develop Nuclear-Powered Spacecraft," SpaceDaily.com, November 16, 2009.
(131) UPI, "Russia explores atomic space engine," SpaceDaily.com, January 11, 2010.
(132) AFP, "Russia delays Mars probe launch until 2011: report," SpaceDaily.com, September 16, 2009.
(133) RIA, "Russia to Test Unmanned Lander for Mars moon mission," SpaceDaily.com, September 10, 2010.
(134) UPI, "Russia announces two space probe missions," SpaceDaily.com, August 3, 2010.
(135) RIA, "Iran to launch first manned spaceflight by 2021," SpaceDaily.com, February 16, 2009.
(136) UPI, "Iran plans new satellite launch," SpaceDaily.com, December 1, 2009.
(137) AFP, "Iran aims to send man into space in nine years," SpaceDaily.com, July 23, 2010.
(138) AFP, "S. Korea, Russia probe rocket failure," SpaceDaily.com, July 23, 2010.
(140) David G. Stephenson, "The Lunar Manufacture of Helium Three," Vol. 2, No. 2, The Journal of Practical Applications in Space, Winter 1991, pp. 41-53.
(144) "ITER," Iter.org, September 28, 2010.
(145) "ITER," Wikipedia, May 7, 2006.
(146) SPX, "Ames hopes to get a chance to help dig up the Moon," SpaceDaily.com, November 21, 2005.
(147) SPX, "SpaceDev Microsat to Travel Interplanetary Superhighway to the Moon," SpaceDaily.com, July 14, 2005.
(148) G. Harry Stine, Confrontation in Space (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1981), p. 59.
(149) Frank Morring, Jr. "Shortfall," Aviation Week & Space Technology, February 12, 2007, pp. 32-33.
(150) SPX, "NASA releases plans for next generation spacecraft," SpaceDaily.com, September 20, 2005.
(151) Dr. Tony Phillips, SPX, "Thinking big about space telescopes," SpaceDaily.com, June 27, 2007.
(152) SPX, "Industry leaders call on Congress to boost NASA budget," SpaceDaily.com, May 16, 2007.
(153) SPX, "NASA Seeks Concept Proposals for Ares V Heavy Lift Rocket," SpaceDaily.com, January 8, 2009.
(154) AFP, "NASA rocket launch advances Moon mission dream," SpaceDaily.com, October 28, 2009.
(155) SPX, "NASA Developing Fission Surface Power Technology," SpaceDaily.com, September 11, 2008.
(156) SPX, "Waterless Concrete Seen as Building Block on Moon," SpaceDaily.com, October 20, 2008.
(157) Steven Mackay, SPX, "Lunar Rock-Like Material May Someday House Moon Colonies," SpaceDaily.com, January 9, 2009.
(158) SPX, "NASA Tests Lunar Rovers and Oxygen Production Technology," SpaceDaily.com, November 14, 2008.
(159) SPX, "Study Shows Robots Could Prepare Lunar Landing Pad," SpaceDaily.com, March 2, 2009.
(160) Dauna Coulter, SPX, "Microwaving Water from Moondust," SpaceDaily.com, October 8, 2009.
(161) Jean-Louis Santini, AFP, "NASA launches two probes to the Moon," SpaceDaily.com, June 18, 2009.
(162) SPX, "NASA Mission To Seek Water Ice On Moon Heads To Florida For Launch," SpaceDaily.com, February 19, 2009.
(163) SPX, "NASA Spacecraft Impacts Lunar Crater in Search for Water Ice," SpaceDaily.com, October 12, 2009.
(164) AFP, "Astronomers discover water on the Moon," Taipei Times, November 15, 2009.
(165) SPX, "LRO sends first lunar images to Earth," SpaceDaily.com, July 3, 2009.
(166) SPX, "New Insights into the Moon's Rich Geologic Complexity," SpaceDaily.com, September 20, 2010.
(167) UPI, "NASA official: Moon still matters," SpaceDaily.com, October 1, 2010.
(168) SPX, "CSF Applaud Historic Vote Setting NASA's New Direction," SpaceDaily.com, October 1, 2010.
(169) SPX, "Obama's first budget backs core lunar 2.0 goals," SpaceDaily.com, March 3, 2009.
(170) AFP, "Obama orders review of NASA's shuttle replacement," SpaceDaily.com, May 7, 2009.
(171) Keith Henry and Katherine Martin, SPX, "Ares to be tested for stability before launch," SpaceDaily.com, May 28, 2009.
(172) SPX, "Everyone has a better idea," SpaceDaily.com, June 22, 2009.
(173) Irene Klotz, Reuters, "Space review panel says Moon, Mars out of reach," Comcast.net, August 14, 2009.
(178) AFP, "Obama to propose abandoning US return to Moon: report," SpaceDaily.com, January 29, 2010.
(179) SPX, "A Perfect Storm Confronts US Space Policy," SpaceDaily.com, February 12, 2010.
(180) Jean-Louis Santini, AFP, "Scientists eye 39-day voyage to Mars," SpaceDaily.com, February 26, 2010.
(181) Mark Carreau, "Fast Trip," Aviation Week & Space Technology, August 10, 2009, pp. 63-65.
(182) AFP, "Obama sets new course to conquer the final frontier," SpaceDaily.com, April 16, 2010.
(184) Andrei Fedyashin, RIA, "Obama Mars Plan Draws Criticism," SpaceDaily.com, April 19, 2010.
(185) SPX, "Boeing Statement on Need for Immediate Development of a Heavy Lift Vehicle," SpaceDaily.com, April 16, 2010.
(186) Frank Morring, Jr. and Irene Klotz, "Heavy-Lift Boosters," Aviation Week & Space Technology, June 28, 2010, pp. 28-29.
(187) Amy Butler, "Space for Change," Aviation Week & Space Technology, July 5, 2010, pp. 20-21.
James H. Hughes *
Albuquerque, New Mexico
* Address for correspondence: email@example.com
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|Title Annotation:||space programs|
|Author:||Hughes, James H.|
|Publication:||The Journal of Social, Political and Economic Studies|
|Date:||Mar 22, 2011|
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