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Thread: To boldly go where he's never gone before.

  1. #1
    Master Seiko7A38's Avatar
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    To boldly go where he's never gone before.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-58885555


    Star Trek star William Shatner ready to boldly go into space

    Hollywood actor William Shatner will later become the oldest person to go to space when he takes a ride in the Blue Origin sub-orbital capsule.
    The 90-year-old, who played Captain James T Kirk in the Star Trek films and TV series, says he is looking forward to seeing Earth from a new perspective.
    Launch is currently scheduled for 15:00 BST (9:00 local time).

    Last edited by Seiko7A38; 13th October 2021 at 09:20.

  2. #2
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    Billionaire vanity flights whilst the rest of the world frets about the state of the planet. I honestly cannot believe they get such positive press for these sorts of things.

  3. #3
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    Amazing, saw the news conference the other night, he looks like a healthy man in his seventies!
    So befitting that he is able to do it.

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    Craftsman mitch1956's Avatar
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    good on him , warp speed sir , :-)

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    Master Seiko7A38's Avatar
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    See @ 30 seconds: https://youtu.be/Pw8HNep1RX4?t=30

    I'm Captain Kirk and I'm terrified of going into space.
    Last edited by Seiko7A38; 13th October 2021 at 09:32.

  6. #6
    Master Rod's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    Billionaire vanity flights whilst the rest of the world frets about the state of the planet. I honestly cannot believe they get such positive press for these sorts of things.
    They probably said similar when aeroplanes first took off. We need to conquer space flight for future generations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    They probably said similar when aeroplanes first took off. We need to conquer space flight for future generations.
    Not too sure there was a pending ecological catastrophe back then though. Also in what way is this helping us ‘conquer space flights’? Isn’t it sub-orbital anyway?

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    Grand Master TheFlyingBanana's Avatar
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    Shatner is simply incredible - at age 90 he has all his marbles, looks great, and seems to defy age.

    I think it is great he's going into space. Bon voyage Captain Kirk.
    So clever my foot fell off.

  9. #9
    Grand Master snowman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    Not too sure there was a pending ecological catastrophe back then though.
    Pretty sure the industrial revolution was well into its stride by then, so it was well on the way!

    M
    Breitling Cosmonaute 809 - What's not to like?

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    Quote Originally Posted by snowman View Post
    Pretty sure the industrial revolution was well into its stride by then, so it was well on the way!

    M
    Yes of course but we can’t really compare the breadth of knowledge we have now regarding the impact it was/is having.

    Still, if sending a nonagenarian into sub-orbital space floats your boat/spaceship…

  11. #11
    Journeyman Tabs's Avatar
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    Someone should run a sweepstake on what catchphrase he'll deliver when they're floating round (from 3mins) up there.

    It can't be his catchphrase from the Twilight Zone. Capsule doesn't have wings, sadly.

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    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    Not too sure there was a pending ecological catastrophe back then though.
    Have you watched this?

    Suggest you do.

    The only way forward is to become inter-planetary, in the very short term at least. If we can get out of the inner Solar System we won't be swallowed by the Sun.

    There is no long-term proposition.


  13. #13
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    I’ve no axe to grind against scientific exploration at all and the trickle down of the science behind it will be essential if we’re to stand a chance of surviving i reckon. These vanity efforts are a waste of resources and ultimately damaging the planet.

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    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Well, I'm sure a lot of embryonic industries were considered similarly to be vanity projects before they became more efficient or widely adopted.

    I don't actually know where space launches and space exploration rank in terms of damage to the planet when placed against the global negative externalities from non-essential industry (such as luxury goods production) or leisure activities such as travel or holidays.

    Do you?

    It would be useful to see the size of the problem for comparison purposes.

  15. #15
    Master Seiko7A38's Avatar
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    Blue Origin New Shepard Mission NS-18 webcast live stream. 90 minutes to launch and counting.


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    The damage they do ranks higher than the damage the wouldn’t do if they weren’t launched.

    What scientific advancements are they making or what experiments are they performing? These are nothing more than billionaire willy-waving competitions. YVMD.

    https://www.latimes.com/business/sto...race?_amp=true

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    Grand Master TheFlyingBanana's Avatar
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    I honestly have no problem with this at all - even if it is currently being driven by billionnaire egos - so what? Spaceflight is advancing, after several decades of being in the doldrums. Humanity needs to develop and reach out into space if it is to survive and flourish in the long term, and the sooner we establish off-world colonies the better. Having all our eggs in one collective basket isn't a great idea.

    If nothing else, this Blue Origin flight is showing that space can be accessible to "normal" people in that they don't have to undertake years of training, or be in tip top physical condition. That alone is significant.
    So clever my foot fell off.

  18. #18
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    Haha, ‘normal people’ oh come on! 😆

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    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    David, I agree with TFB on this.

    We shouldn't waste resources, you're correct.

    But the reality is we could all do better. Well, apart from Dave-O of this parish who is now training as a monk.

    Look at the interest we have in watches. Is that necessary? Could we use one cheap mechanical instead and reduce our impact on the planet?

    So the question becomes how can we all change our lives to ensure we look after the planet as well as survive as a species?

    I would say space programs are an integral part of reaching the next stage. Whatever that is. Your focus on ensuring they are done correctly is an admirable one.

  20. #20
    I've always liked "The Shat" and wish him well on his flight. He's also on my Death List, so if a Klingon Bird of Prey suddenly appears, at least I'll get a point...

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    I’ve no axe to grind against scientific exploration at all and the trickle down of the science behind it will be essential if we’re to stand a chance of surviving i reckon. These vanity efforts are a waste of resources and ultimately damaging the planet.
    With respect, I think your opposition to this is driven by envy rather than anything else. It's because it's rich folk having fun. The environmental impact is microscopic compared to the impact which poor folk create when they have fun (Budget airlines for a start) and as you say, there area at least some potential trickle down spin offs from this.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlphaOmega View Post
    David, I agree with TFB on this.

    We shouldn't waste resources, you're correct.

    But the reality is we could all do better. Well, apart from Dave-O of this parish who is now training as a monk.

    Look at the interest we have in watches. Is that necessary? Could we use one cheap mechanical instead and reduce our impact on the planet?

    So the question becomes how can we all change our lives to ensure we look after the planet as well as survive as a species?

    I would say space programs are an integral part of reaching the next stage. Whatever that is. Your focus on ensuring they are done correctly is an admirable one.
    Haha, nope, never a monk, have/had far too many vices! I’ve driven a car just once though and gave up meat and fish 30 something years ago. I’m sorely tempted to buy a scooter at the moment though, so shoot me! My decisions done for my reasons.

    I have agreed that a proper scientific space programme is something necessary, just that these aren’t part of that and can’t honestly be compared, just people having a jaunt.

    The environmental impact of having watches is pretty negligible i’d say compared to rocket ships.

  23. #23
    Master Seiko7A38's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    Billionaire vanity flights whilst the rest of the world frets about the state of the planet. I honestly cannot believe they get such positive press for these sorts of things.
    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    I have agreed that a proper scientific space programme is something necessary, just that these aren’t part of that and can’t honestly be compared, just people having a jaunt.


    Ooops ! The thread suddenly got shorter.
    Last edited by Seiko7A38; 13th October 2021 at 14:24.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    They probably said similar when aeroplanes first took off. We need to conquer space flight for future generations. if they're ever going to get Elysium into orbit.
    Last edited by number2; 13th October 2021 at 14:49.
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  25. #25
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    ^^^

    Pleased for you!

  26. #26
    Grand Master TheFlyingBanana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    Haha, ‘normal people’ oh come on! 

    "Normal" in the sense that they aren't trained astronauts - I thought that was clear in what I said?

    I am also not making comparisons with what astronaut scientists do on the ISS and these pleasure flights for the wealthy, worthy or connected. But that isn't the issue here - these are the very early steps in making space more accessible and that will ultimately open up all kinds of new possibilities, not tight now, or even in the next decade, but in the next fifty or a hundred years, definitely.

    I was very concerned when Obama changed the direction of Nasa, closed down the shuttle programme, and redirected funds toward Space-X and others, but I think it is now clear that this was a smart strategy. If multi-billionnaire industrialists want to spend their money on furthering humakind's reach into the cosmos, then good on them. At least they are doing something that has potentially global value and significance, and not just spending it all on endless luxury yachts (although they have those as well of course...)
    So clever my foot fell off.

  27. #27
    Master Seiko7A38's Avatar
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    3 - 2 - 1 .... Lift off. Warp speed James T Kirk.

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    I think it's a step forward towards spaceflight becoming more common. Maybe not this year or this decade, but progress can make sudden leaps.

    In a century we've gone from Orville and Wilbur Wright making an extended hop in the 'Wright Flyer' at Kitty Hawk to launching people into space with reasonable safety.

    Maybe in 100 years time people will look back at these flights and wonder at how primitive they were. There could be new methods of propulsion and flight just waiting to be discovered. Let's hope so.
    “The more I learn about people, the more I like my dog.”

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    To be honest i took you to mean ‘normal’ as in not ludicrously wealthy rather than those without a scientific background.

    I don’t think these flights will be within reach of those who are at least extremely wealthy for many, many years and probably not in the lifetime of my children and honestly don’t think that they’re advancing anything much other than their own pleasure and egos. Surely they are using tech that has been tried and tested and are just adapting it for their expensive hobby rather than pushing the boundaries? This one in particular is ‘just’ a sub-orbital flight, i’m sure it’s lots of fun though!

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    Watching it live... moved by the emotional impact it had on Shatner.

  31. #31
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    To boldly go where he's never gone before.

    Well Done Captain James T Kirk

    Just in case, theres any Space Cadets here who wish to become Astronauts, just complete the application form here
    https://www.blueorigin.com/new-shepard/reserve-a-seat

    One small step away......




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  32. #32
    Grand Master Dave+63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    They probably said similar when aeroplanes first took off. We need to conquer space flight for future generations.
    Quote Originally Posted by AlphaOmega View Post
    Have you watched this?

    Suggest you do.

    The only way forward is to become inter-planetary, in the very short term at least. If we can get out of the inner Solar System we won't be swallowed by the Sun.

    There is no long-term proposition.

    I disagree; my personal opinion is that in order to sustain mankind god the greatest length of time, we need to reduce the population to sustainable levels and stop glorifying mass consumption.

    Unfortunately, the invention of money and human greed has made this all but impossible.

    Whilst a booming economy may be good for the population in the short term, it’s a long term disaster and if we can’t get it right here on earth, we’ve absolutely no right to spread our disease to their planets.

    Yes, the solar system will end (and the universe eventually) but humanity doesn’t actually deserve to survive long term.

    Certainly the best thing for the planet currently is the mass extinction of the human race; COVID appears to have failed but something else that comes along may be more successful.

  33. #33
    Grand Master GraniteQuarry's Avatar
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    And not one mention of TJ Hooker!

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    Or his ‘singing’!

  35. #35
    What possible use is space tourism? It costs a fortune and it will never cost less than a fortune because of how incredibly difficult space travel actually is. The mass of the Earth is such that escape velocity is only just possible at all, physical fact, and is highly unlikely to ever get any easier. Roughly 80% of the mass of any rocket is fuel, ie smoke and gas that gets stuffed into the atmosphere as soon as you light the fuse. And then where do you go? The universe is so mind bogglingly huge that there is no propulsion system capable of projecting a human much further than the edge of the solar system before they die of old age. There is quite literally nowhere to go. This is pointless folly and quite frankly an insult to the planet that gave us the means to do it.

  36. #36
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave+63 View Post
    I disagree; my personal opinion is that in order to sustain mankind god the greatest length of time, we need to reduce the population to sustainable levels and stop glorifying mass consumption.

    Unfortunately, the invention of money and human greed has made this all but impossible.

    Whilst a booming economy may be good for the population in the short term, it’s a long term disaster and if we can’t get it right here on earth, we’ve absolutely no right to spread our disease to their planets.

    Yes, the solar system will end (and the universe eventually) but humanity doesn’t actually deserve to survive long term.

    Certainly the best thing for the planet currently is the mass extinction of the human race; COVID appears to have failed but something else that comes along may be more successful.
    Dave, I'm actually a little concerned. We must be more positive. You have been given life and it's only fair that others have a turn too.

    I do open the nihilistic box occasionally - usually when I have spent too much time reading certain French philosophers.

    I found a way through this logical cul-de-sac by setting myself short-term goals. I posted the Touching The Void documentary on another thread. There are sections of that story where the protagonists wanted to give up but they did not.

  37. #37
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Groundrush View Post
    What possible use is space tourism? It costs a fortune and it will never cost less than a fortune because of how incredibly difficult space travel actually is. The mass of the Earth is such that escape velocity is only just possible at all, physical fact, and is highly unlikely to ever get any easier. Roughly 80% of the mass of any rocket is fuel, ie smoke and gas that gets stuffed into the atmosphere as soon as you light the fuse. And then where do you go? The universe is so mind bogglingly huge that there is no propulsion system capable of projecting a human much further than the edge of the solar system before they die of old age. There is quite literally nowhere to go. This is pointless folly and quite frankly an insult to the planet that gave us the means to do it.
    I was hoping you might be more positive considering your excellent knowledge of physics.

    I don't have a plan beyond getting away from the Sun.

    Triton?

  38. #38
    Grand Master TheFlyingBanana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ares View Post
    Watching it live... moved by the emotional impact it had on Shatner.
    Yes, beautiful words, sincerely felt. Sending him was a master stroke in every way.
    Last edited by TheFlyingBanana; 13th October 2021 at 19:42.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Groundrush View Post
    What possible use is space tourism? It costs a fortune and it will never cost less than a fortune because of how incredibly difficult space travel actually is. The mass of the Earth is such that escape velocity is only just possible at all, physical fact, and is highly unlikely to ever get any easier. Roughly 80% of the mass of any rocket is fuel, ie smoke and gas that gets stuffed into the atmosphere as soon as you light the fuse. And then where do you go? The universe is so mind bogglingly huge that there is no propulsion system capable of projecting a human much further than the edge of the solar system before they die of old age. There is quite literally nowhere to go. This is pointless folly and quite frankly an insult to the planet that gave us the means to do it.
    Yup to me it seems the apogee of our species appetite for self destructive self regard.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlphaOmega View Post
    Dave, I'm actually a little concerned. We must be more positive. You have been given life and it's only fair that others have a turn too.

    I do open the nihilistic box occasionally - usually when I have spent too much time reading certain French philosophers.

    I found a way through this logical cul-de-sac by setting myself short-term goals. I posted the Touching The Void documentary on another thread. There are sections of that story where the protagonists wanted to give up but they did not.
    I get where you’re coming from - after all, humanity is nothing without aspiration, imagination and idealism. We have an astonishing capacity for persistence and self-sacrifice, and we have survived all sorts of upheavals and trials in the few hundred thousand years we’ve been around.

    However, humanity is also an insatiably curious, inventive, adaptable and invasive species, and from a dispassionate ‘ecological’ point of view I can see a case for believing that our impact on other planets may turn out to be as bad as (or worse than) our impact on Earth. The difficulty is that along with our capacity for love, wonder, creativity and care, we are also self-interested, acquisitive, suspicious and violent, and, I think, sadly stand a good chance of wiping ourselves out before we make meaningful steps into the cosmos. Which might be no bad thing, if you’re a life-form in the ocean under the ice of Enceladus, say…

    [Edit] On the question of the utility of space travel (whether of the NASA/ESA/RosKosmos or the billionaire willy-waving variety): we do an awful lot of things that are entirely without practical purpose. Art, for instance. Music. Works of literature. Comedy. I suspect that ‘doing things simply because we like them’ is hardwired into humanity at a fairly basic level…
    Last edited by PreacherCain; 13th October 2021 at 20:46.

  41. #41
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Damn it all, PC.

    You're going to make me speak more transparently.

    Ok.

    The truth is I understand Dave's views. If I look into the void that is the truth of our long-term future, I see nothing because everything will end in nothingness. For us, for Earth and for the Universe.

    But... there are parallels with life. If we stop trying to improve ourselves then we are condemning ourselves to repeat the same mistakes of the past.

    We are a virus in many ways. But we are capable of creating beauty. Article 1 as evidence in the case for the defence of humans is The Goldberg Variations.




    What other wonders might we be capable of creating? I don't know. We are improving. With every generation we are understanding ourselves more.

    We used to be a lot worse. AI may help us. Or it may not.

    But on balance I believe we have the capacity to become better still.

    [Edit - just seen you have added music as well. We are closer in our views than it appears.]

  42. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by AlphaOmega View Post
    I was hoping you might be more positive considering your excellent knowledge of physics.
    I didn’t realise they were doing any physics. It just looked more like a demonstration of corporate planet shagging using a giant space dildo to me. Now if the world was in better shape maybe I would be more positive about this, but unfortunately from where I’m sitting the situation doesn’t look very good at all and is probably going to get exponentially worse in the years to come.

  43. #43
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    ^I was on a call and had to mute myself to avoid laughing too loudly.

    [Edit - just to be clear I was laughing at GR's phrasing not his views. He knows far more than I ever will about space travel.]

    Is there a way we can clean up the planet and become inter-planetary?

    If only from an uncontrollable natural disaster perspective, that would seem a reasonable compromise.
    Last edited by AlphaOmega; 14th October 2021 at 13:31.

  44. #44
    Happy he did not die in a ball of flames but sooner or later that dildo looking thing is going to go boom

  45. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by xellos99 View Post
    Happy he did not die in a ball of flames but sooner or later that dildo looking thing is going to go boom
    I think she said, that one has completed four flights and the have successfully completed 15 test flights, so seems that they have got the hang of it.

  46. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    I think she said, that one has completed four flights and the have successfully completed 15 test flights, so seems that they have got the hang of it.
    Yes and the Columbia had near 30 flights and NASA thought they had the hang of it.

    This is how it ended up


  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidd View Post
    To be honest i took you to mean ‘normal’ as in not ludicrously wealthy rather than those without a scientific background.

    I don’t think these flights will be within reach of those who are at least extremely wealthy for many, many years and probably not in the lifetime of my children and honestly don’t think that they’re advancing anything much other than their own pleasure and egos. Surely they are using tech that has been tried and tested and are just adapting it for their expensive hobby rather than pushing the boundaries? This one in particular is ‘just’ a sub-orbital flight, i’m sure it’s lots of fun though!
    Tech has to start somewhere and usually at very great cost initially, I’m sceptical of this but I look at the possibilities of the future. Barnes Wallis had the vision of a plane that would do London to Sydney in I think about an hour and a half. Now we have a launch system and capsule that could test that theory and with a bit of thinking it could be developed only to the boundaries to the imagination of the money men sometime in the future.

    My gran remembered the wright brothers first flight and the titanic well, her son died flying during the war, her grandson spent his early life in recce helicopters with the army and it was fun . Now we’ve stopped advancing because there’s no money, there is money but it’s in the pockets of Tesla and Bazos so let’s give them there vanity projects and let them move the whole thing forward. We used to have wars to move technology this quickly.


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  48. #48
    Quote Originally Posted by xellos99 View Post
    Yes and the Columbia had near 30 flights and NASA thought they had the hang of it.

    This is how it ended up

    Technology has moved on a long way since then, of course it could go bang but I reckon the risks are much lower, look at modern passenger aircraft and accidents per passenger mile compared to early flight.

  49. #49
    Grand Master oldoakknives's Avatar
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    Could always put your name down for an 'economy' flight to the edge of space in a Mig-29 Fulcrum when they resume operations.

    https://migflug.com/flights-prices/m...edge-of-space/
    “The more I learn about people, the more I like my dog.”

  50. #50
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