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  Red Bull Stratos: Felix Baumgartner's 'spacedive' (Page 3)

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Author Topic:   Red Bull Stratos: Felix Baumgartner's 'spacedive'
moorouge
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posted 10-18-2012 01:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for moorouge   Click Here to Email moorouge     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I tend to agree with the last post. There have been suggestions that the Red Bull advertising machine has been in over-drive and has been guilty of 'hype' when talking about aspects of this jump.

One example of this is the 'damaged finger' in the suit worn by Baumgartner. Was he really in danger? It is doubtful, but it does add to the impact of the story. Compared to Kittinger's which was cobbled together and not specifically designed for the job, Baumgartner had the benefit of a specially engineered suit that was most unlikely to fail.

Without in anyway detracting from the courage and skill of all those involved, at the end of the day this was just a simple parachute jump, albeit from extreme altitude

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-18-2012 02:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
RedBull Stratos was an incredible opportunity to teach a huge audience about the past and future exploration of high altitudes and space.

I can’t help but think this Stratos jump could have been more powerful and interesting had we learned the context behind the mission. In the end, I have to wonder how much we’re gaining if the public is excited by space exploration but doesn’t understand why it matters or the technology behind it.

Obviously she never read the articles in New Scientist and Air & Space Magazine or visited the Red Bull Stratos website in the lead-in to the jump that explained the context and history. With Joe Kittinger as mission CapCom visible to the world, there was every stimulus for an interested kid or adult to jump on the internet and google the heck out of the jump to learn more.

I wonder whether this flight would have been perceived differently had Zenith Watches been the lead sponsor, just like Breitling for the 1999 global circumnavigation by balloon. People forget that Red Bull was not the only sponsor of Felix's jump, there were a number of aerospace and equipment manufacturers onboard as co-sponsors.

People are also forgetting that Felix pioneered a flight across the English Channel in 2003 using a specially engineered carbon fiber delta wing. No one considers Louis Bleriot's 1909 flight to be just a stunt - it is properly positioned as a milestone in pioneering aviation.

Finally, no one considers those climbers who regularly enter the 'deathzone' of the 14 peaks of the eight thousanders (peaks above 8,000m or 26,247ft) to be guilty of pulling a stunt. The first person to climb all 14 eight-thousanders, Reinhold Messner, said this in 2004:

"You could die in each climb and that meant you were responsible for yourself. We were real mountaineers: careful, aware and even afraid. By climbing mountains we were not learning how big we were. We were finding out how breakable, how weak and how full of fear we are. You can only get this if you expose yourself to high danger."
Felix Baumgartner said as much in 2012:
"Sometimes you have to go up really high to see how small you are."
Felix's jump was over 4 times the height of Chomolungma/Everest (8,848m or 29,029ft) or K2 (8,611m or 28,251ft) and far into the 'deathzone'. This is no place for amateurs, tourist thrill-seekers, or crazy 'daredevils' stunt-flying. This was a deadly serious technical endeavour/discipline and a historic flight in aerospace exploration.

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-18-2012 06:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
Suggesting that risking one's life somehow disqualifies an activity as a stunt is just not true.

A stunt, by definition, is "an action displaying spectacular skill and daring." Baumgartner's jump most certainly qualifies as a stunt.


The term stunt has a perjorative connotation suggestive of crazy antics, high jinx, and the lunatic acts of a daredevil. Robert, by your stated definition, the launch and landing of every single manned spaceflight could be defined as a stunt. No one would describe the flight of Apollo 8, the lunar landing of the Eagle on Apollo 11, nor the launch/entry of the space shuttle as mere stunts. Why? Because it would be derogatory. Because the activities had scientific objectives. Because the activities were highly complex, technical endeavours risking lives while pushing the limits of human knowledge.
quote:
Stunts are not inherently bad. In some ways, those who continue to summit Mount Everest, especially those trying to set firsts are taking part in stunts, too. They can be admired but their effort is not advancing humanity's ability to climb high mountains.
That's the very first time I have ever heard entry into Everest's 'deathzone' referred to as taking part in stunts. Also, the research being performed into High Altitude Pulmonary/Cerebral Edema (HAPE/HACE) on Everest has importance not only on the mountain but also in intensive care units back on the ground.
quote:
Originally posted by moorouge:
Without in anyway detracting from the courage and skill of all those involved, at the end of the day this was just a simple parachute jump.
This was no simple parachute jump and to complacently position it as such is to reveal a complete ignorance of aerospace physics/medicine. I suggest you read of Joe Kittinger's experiences in detail.
quote:
Originally posted by GoesTo11:
Project Excelsior was explicitly experimental: It was intended to probe the then largely unknown survivability challenges faced by pilots forced to abandon their aircraft at extreme high altitude. It was a clinical and necessary research project.
In contrast, the fact that in the half-century since Col. Kittinger's jump no serious attempt has been made to challenge it until now suggests that there was little significant knowledge held to be gained in doing so...or at least none worth the attendant risk.

So why then was Joe Kittinger wasting his time on this? And Dr. Jon Clark? And NASA, USAF, David Clark and Martin-Baker all looking at the outcome?

This endeavour requires huge background support and finance, which has been just as much a barrier in the past as the altitude and the technology. Also, some have died over the past 50 years attempting this and deterring others from even considering this pioneering aerospace work.

Felix Baumgartner was pushing an experimental flight envelope. No one knew for certain if he would survive. Kittinger's jumps were subsonic. Felix's jump was designed to test the limits of high altitude survivability and whether humans could survive supersonic speeds unaided by a vehicle. If successful he would break records, as did Kittinger, as did Yeager. And yes, the sponsors would breathe a sigh of relief and benefit.

Was Chuck Yeager's 1947 supersonic flight just a stunt? I've never heard it called that, despite the fact that medically he was unfit to fly - talk about reckless! Similarly I've never heard Sqn. Ldr. Andy Green's 1997 Thrust SSC supersonic land speed record classified as a stunt.

It would appear that skydiving is incorrectly perceived as just a daredevil sport for performing stunts. Over the past decade or so, with the advent of skysurfing, wing-suit flying, and speed skydiving where participants regularly reach speeds of Mach 0.5 that perception is not only no longer true but a dangerous fallacy. The activity is highly regulated by the FAI and national associations, and if you think you can just show up on a dropzone with a dangerous attitude looking to perform reckless stunts, then you will very quickly find yourself permanently grounded with your licences revoked.

Wing-walking, barn-storming, fly-bys, and getting shot out of a cannon are stunts. Pushing the frontiers of human stratospheric flight to Mach 1.24 unaided by a vehicle, is not!

(We'll agree to disagree on this subject)

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-18-2012 07:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I think this post should settle the matter definitively.

If anyone has actually bothered to look at the Red Bull Stratos website, you will see the following clearly articulated:

Red Bull Stratos Mission

The Mission

Red Bull Stratos is a scientific mission to 120,000 ft. Jumping from a stratospheric balloon one man will attempt to break the speed of sound in freefall.

Red Bull Stratos seeks to advance scientific discoveries in aerospace for the benefit of mankind.

"On the way up without even opening the capsule door you can find yourself in a life or death situation. So it's extremely dangerous." (Mike Todd, Red Bull Stratos Life Support Engineer)

Red Bull Stratos, a mission to the edge of space, will attempt to transcend human limits that have existed for 50 years. Supported by a team of experts Felix Baumgartner plans to ascend to 120,000 feet in a stratospheric balloon and make a freefall jump rushing toward earth at supersonic speeds before parachuting to the ground. His attempt to dare atmospheric limits holds the potential to provide valuable medical and scientific research data for future pioneers.

The Red Bull Stratos team brings together the world's leading minds in aerospace medicine, engineering, pressure suit development, capsule creation and balloon fabrication.

Today Felix and his specialized team hope to take what was learned from Joe's jumps more than 50 years ago and press forward to test the edge of the human envelope.

I didn't see any explicit mission goals to increase Red Bull's market share, share price, or boost the personal ego of Felix Baumgartner.

All this sounds like the sort of "stunt" only NASA would pull.

Paul78zephyr
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posted 10-18-2012 07:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
I didn't see any explicit mission goals to increase Red Bull's market share, share price, or boost the personal ego of Felix Baumgartner.
Off course you didn't, those things are all implicit.

And when the Nabisco Lunos lands the next person on the moon and the spacecraft is covered with Nabisco logos, and the Nabisco flag is planted on the moon 'for all cookie eaterkind' and we have live video from the lunar surface of the astronaut dunking his cookies into milk at 1/6g will we call that science?

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-18-2012 08:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Paul78zephyr:
Of course you didnt, those things are all implicit.
So the primary explicitly stated mission goals aren't actually really meant at all? That the mission team are just paying lip-service to noble goals, and are actually all rather shallow money/fame/record-chasing corporate stunt performers?

Yeah, right.

The laws of physics have a curious ability to deal decisively with insincere chancers pulling reckless stunts at extreme altitudes!

quote:
Originally posted by Paul78zephyr:
And when the Nabisco Lunos lands the next person on the moon and the spacecraft is covered with Nabisco logos, and the Nabisco flag is planted on the moon ... will we call that science?
And when the private space transportation company SpaceX docked its commercial spacecraft Dragon, emblazoned with logos, with the ISS, did people not applaud and call that science?

I'm pretty sure the laws of physics weren't invalidated just because it was SpaceX and not NASA/RSA/ESA/JSA!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-18-2012 08:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You might want to look at the images of the Dragon capsule again. There wasn't a single logo the spacecraft.

The only SpaceX logo was on the nose cone, which was jettisoned before reaching orbit.

And no, docking a spacecraft at the space station is not science, nor did anyone call it that. It was the result of engineering to be sure, but the only science involved were the experiments the capsule had packed aboard.

Paul78zephyr
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posted 10-18-2012 08:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
So the primary explicitly stated mission goals aren't actually really meant at all? That the mission team are just paying lip-service to noble goals, and are actually all rather shallow money/fame/record-chasing corporate stunt performers?
I think you nailed it.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-18-2012 08:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Why must it be all or nothing?

I think we can all acknowledge that Felix Baumgartner is not a scientist, nor was his initial interest in this jump driven by a scientific curiosity.

Unlike Joe Kittinger, Baumgartner was not recruited for this jump by an established organization already pursuing scientific research.

Instead, Baumgartner recruited scientists — and a sponsor — but for the primary purpose of making the jump possible. From there, scientific objectives were born (much like how Apollo was born out of politics before it gained experiments and geology as secondary goals).

Project Excelsior was aimed at advancing the military's understanding of high altitude ejection systems. Red Bull Stratos was aimed at breaking four of Kittinger's records set while taking part in Project Excelsior.

That scientists found a way to learn from Baumgartner's jump is not surprising. Scientists very often find ways to use non-scientific activities to advance their research. There are scientists who study the physics and physiology of sporting games, for example.

It's wrong to suggest that Red Bull Stratos was only a stunt, but it is also wrong to suggest that any science to be gained wasn't built around an activity that began as and was carried out as a stunt.

And no, that's not a negative; Red Bull Stratos was a stunt that can be celebrated for pushing the barriers of the human adventure.

moorouge
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posted 10-18-2012 09:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for moorouge   Click Here to Email moorouge     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Might I ask how my post reveals "...a complete ignorance"? Despite YankeeClipper's protestations, at the end of the day it was just a parachute jump. He jumped, he fell, he opened his parachute and he landed, just a countless thousands have done before. I notice that he carefully left out the last part of my post where I acknowledged that it was from extreme altitude.

I am well aware of the dangers associated with high altitude. Because of this I think that history will record Kittinger's jump the more noteworthy despite the records broken by Baumgartner. The former really did jump into the unknown using very primitive equipment. The latter had the benefit of fifty years of development in high altitude pressure suits to protect him. No wonder the Stratos team had to hype up the jump, even to the extent of over emphasizing the effects of breaking the sound barrier.

For once I agree with Robert. It was a stunt and a very noteworthy one at that.

issman1
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posted 10-18-2012 03:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for issman1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
However one chooses to define it, neither NASA nor ESA (Baumgartner is an Austrian) were remotely interested. That probably speaks volumes as far as they are concerned.

Personally, anyone who dares to do something like what was done has my admiration. While his "spacesuit" may have zero applications at NASA, it may find a use at Boeing, Sierra Nevada or SpaceX.

But I wonder if detractors will scowl at Virgin Galactic for having the gall to do what NASA has never done, by actually making space travel readily accessible to the masses?

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-18-2012 03:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
Red Bull Stratos was a stunt that can be celebrated for pushing the barriers of the human adventure.
I'm curious about the distinctions that are being made between similar types of activity:

A LEO EVA e.g. Ed White (Gemini IV) and a Stratospheric EVA e.g. Joe Kittinger (Excelsior III) are not considered stunts, but another Stratospheric EVA e.g. Felix Baumgartner (Stratos) is deemed to be a stunt.

All three EVAs involved significant risk, science objectives, and high-speed freefall performed by highly trained professional pilots above the service ceilings of the Lockheed U-2 and SR-71. But why degrade Baumgartner's EVA by calling it a stunt, when White had to be ordered to stop joyriding and get back in the vehicle?

Felix Baumgartner is a trained military parachutist, BASE skydiver, and professional helicopter pilot, but has effectively been dismissed as a mere circus stunt performer. Neil Armstrong was a naval aviator, test pilot, and astronaut but nobody degraded his status when forced to eject/parachute from the stunt-like LLTV.

If people refuse to accept the stated Red Bull Stratos mission objectives, ignore the years of technical development required to create and accomplish the challenge, dismiss the risk and skill level, and degrade the credentials of the pilot because of their own inate prejudice about what constitutes the right stuff or what real piloting/aviation is, then there is not much left to say.

But would you approach Borman/Lovell/Anders and tell them to their faces that Apollo 8 was nothing more than a dangerous reckless cold war stunt that was less about hard science/exploration and more about putting one over the Russians? I don't think they would care much for the use of the term stunt no matter how well intended you were.

The Red Bull Air Races involve stunt flying. Supersonic skydiving from over 4 times the height of Everest does not. No one calls a Concorde/U-2/SR-71 flight a stunt and then praises the technical aspect of the flight, so why do that to the Red Bull Stratos flight?

To call the flight a stunt indicates that you don't fully truly appreciate what's involved. One can't call it purposeless, frivolous and performed for the sheer thrill of it, then go on to technically praise it. Those positions are diametrically opposed and contradictory on this flight. It is illogical to hold those positions simultaneously - that is why it is all or nothing.

Supersonic skydiving from extreme high altitude may look like a stunt to you, but to those of us who understand the scale of the technical challenge it is anything but. That's partly why it has taken 50 years to partially surpass Kittinger's flights, and until 2012 for one solitary human to go supersonic unaided by a vehicle.

Quite simply, this flight transcended the stunt category by a very, very large margin.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-18-2012 04:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A valid argument could be made that Apollo 8 was a stunt, if considered within the larger context of the Space Race, which itself was built upon a series of stunts aimed primarily at political one-upmanship.

The decision to fly Apollo 8 around the moon wasn't done out of an interest in science or for the betterment of humanity; it was done to beat the Russians to the moon.

For that matter, Apollo 11 didn't land on the moon to return moon rocks or deploy a seismometer; it was sent to beat the Russians to the moon. Had Apollo 11 failed to collect a single moon rock or deploy a single science experiment but still left footprints on the surface and returned the crew safely, it would have been declared a success.

I believe, as was suggested earlier, that the problem here is semantics. I don't view "stunts" to carry any negative connotation on its own and I can point to numerous stunts throughout history which are rightfully celebrated. An activity needn't be immersed in science to be worthwhile.

I have a great deal of respect for what Baumgartner achieved: he set about to accomplish a goal and achieved most of it (he successfully broke three out of the four records he was pursuing). He deserves the accolades he has received.

But elevating what he did to the same level of what Kittinger did 50 years earlier? Or to any spacewalk in orbit? I believe that is exaggerating the risk, importance and complexity of the Red Bull Stratos project.

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-18-2012 06:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by moorouge:
Might I ask how my post reveals "...a complete ignorance"?
Your attitude to the flight and level of complacent disrespect for the dangers involved demonstrate a fundamental lack of understanding of the discipline.

"It was just a parachute jump ... just as countless thousands have done before". Are you serious? What of that tiny little matter of a 120,000+ft supersonic freefall? You think the business of maintaining a head-down stable attitude at 833.9mph is trivial? Try it and see how fast you enter a lethal flat spin! A tiny degree of body positional asymmetry and you are unstable. It happened to Kittinger and Baumgartner and both of them were extremely lucky to recover out of it in time. Surely you are familiar with the consequences of 'red-out'?

Who exactly are the "countless thousands" who have safely and successfully executed such extreme altitude skydives and just opened their parachutes in some fantasy world to float harmlessly to earth? That is utterly ridiculous!

If your oxygen supply malfunctions/fails, you're in trouble. If your pressure suit tears, you're dead. If you suffer ebullism, you're dead. If you develop a pulmonary/cerebral aeroembolism, you can die. If you develop hypoxic hypoxia, you can die. If you enter an irrecoverable flat spin, you can get killed. Lose situational awareness, you can get killed. If your main/reserve canopy deploys prematurely, you can get killed. If you suffer a double canopy malfunction, you're dead. If you're visor shatters, you're dead. If your visor fogs and you can't read your flight instruments, you're in trouble. Do I need to go on? Just a walk in the park, right? Still think this is just a stunt, do you?

Supersonic extreme high-altitude skydiving is extremely dangerous! - it will kill you in a heartbeat and is no place for complacent thrillseekers performing a stunt or "just a parachute jump".

328KF
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posted 10-18-2012 10:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I think that some of the negativity expressed here toward this project might be due to the perceived reputation of the Red Bull name and their involvement in "extreme sports." In fact, Baumgartner has been associated with the drink maker since the late '80's, and in his youth did take part in some pretty reckless activities.

But now at 40, in everything I have read while following this program over the last several years, he took this attempt very seriously. Red Bull and the Stratos team, not Baumgartner himself, recruited the team of famous, well known, and unknown experts who had the talents to make this successful. Felix himself admitted post flight that his only thought just before jumping wasn't about records or fame, but rather, " I don't want to die in front of all of these people." This alone speaks volumes about his motivations.

This project would have never gotten off the ground without the financial support of the sponsor. Just like Curt Newport would have never recovered Liberty Bell 7 without the support ( and subsequent revenue generating documentary) of the Discovery Channel. Burt Rutan's SpaceShipOne would have never flown without the backing of Paul Allen, whose name was applied to the side of the vehicle and his Vulcan Production Company aired the two part documentary to follow.

Each of these projects began with the dream of one participant...Newport, Rutan, Baumgartner. I'm sure there are other examples. Are any of their endeavours something that needed to be done to advance humanity? Probably not, but the person with the imagination and desire to do something unprecedented, or to do something just a little bit better, had the talent and influence to convince a financial provider to expend the funds to make them happen.

The book on the Stratos project has yet to be written, but I'll bet there are engineers and doctors lining up to see the results of the data obtained. Years down the road, professional and private space travellers might take for granted the safety devices and procedures they benefit from, and those who design them will never even think about the time when we called the efforts of Baumgartner's team "a stunt."

Rusty B
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posted 10-19-2012 01:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rusty B   Click Here to Email Rusty B     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The next step might be bailout from orbit. Here's Popular Mechanics article about an orbital bailout system proposed in 1966 (Scroll down to read the 4 page article after clicking the link).

moorouge
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posted 10-19-2012 02:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for moorouge   Click Here to Email moorouge     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
Your attitude to the flight and level of complacent disrespect for the dangers involved demonstrate a fundamental lack of understanding of the discipline.

I completely understand the discipline and dangers involved. Unlike you, I'm not taken in by the Red Bull hype. As an advertising exercise one estimate puts its value around $43 million, not bad for a stunt that captured the world's imagination with, given the technology involved, carrying a minimal risk.

This does not mean I don't appreciate Baumgartner's achievement. I just think Kittinger took the greater risk and deserves the recognition for this.

Robert makes the comparison with Apollo 8 as a 'stunt'. There is some merit in this. However, Apollo 8 went where no man had gone before with the attendant problems of testing in deep space the Apollo capsule, its navigation and communications. Baumgartner was following a trodden path. His jump was just higher and faster.

Jurg Bolli
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posted 10-19-2012 08:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jurg Bolli   Click Here to Email Jurg Bolli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
See these two clips for an alternate view and opinion: 1 | 2

mjanovec
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posted 10-19-2012 11:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
I think this post should settle the matter definitively.

It doesn't.

Red Bull might call it a scientific mission, but without any stated scientific goals, it sounds more like a mission simply to break a record. There's nothing wrong with that, really...since adventure has its place in aviation too.

If there was any valuable science to be gained by making a man free fall faster than the speed of sound, however, it would have been attempted before now.

quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
But would you approach Borman/Lovell/Anders and tell them to their faces that Apollo 8 was nothing more than a dangerous reckless cold war stunt that was less about hard science/exploration and more about putting one over the Russians?

If you ask Frank Borman whether the Apollo program was more about beating the Russians or about exploration, he will tell you without hesitation that it was the former. A lot of great science was conducted with the Apollo program (not to mention Mercury and Gemini). But it was not the driving force behind the program (or Kennedy's goal).

I wouldn't tell the Apollo 8 crew that their mission was "reckless," just because it wasn't. It was carefully engineered, planned, and executed. The same with Baumgartner's jump. Both were dangerous, but not reckless.

bwhite1976
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posted 10-19-2012 12:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for bwhite1976   Click Here to Email bwhite1976     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I look at Baumgartner's jump as exploration. To say it is a "stunt" is an oversimplification and maybe stunts and exploration have become blurred just because their is a corporate sponsor.

Jumping over 10 school buses on a motorcyle might be a stunt. Maybe 200 years from now daredevils will break records of distance and speed between planets in our solar system and it will all be paid for by companies with giant logos painted on the side like some kind of galactic nascar. I hope so. Maybe at that point you could point to stunts in space, but not Baumgartner's jump.

And Apollo 8 is the equivalent of Columbus finding the new world. A first step to explore a place that had never been explored by man. The technology and experiences gleamed from that experience benefit mankind regardless if they the crew went because of political or ideological victory.

Baumgartner's jump is a great example of the desire of mankind to explore (as was Kittinger's without any question). The image of him standing on the perch of that capsule with the curvature of the earth BELOW him is awe-inspiring and exploration pure and simple.

yeknom-ecaps
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posted 10-19-2012 04:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for yeknom-ecaps   Click Here to Email yeknom-ecaps     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Listen to Chuck Yeager's comments on Felix's jump.

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-20-2012 03:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by moorouge:
Baumgartner was following a trodden path. His jump was just higher and faster.
No one suggests that commercial jet airline pilots routinely engage in stunts - if they did, they would rapidly lose their ATPL licenses and be grounded. Yet they fly daily at a region of the flight envelope known as "Coffin Corner" (Q Corner) where they can easily enter an aerodynamic stall and depart from controlled flight. This is at airspeeds of Mach <1.0 at altitudes below the Armstrong Line/Limit (~63,000ft).

Baumgartner reached Mach 1.24 from an exit altitude twice that of the Armstrong Line, unprotected and unaided by a vehicle. Yet you make references to "hype" and "minimal risk"?

With a BSc and MSc in Analytical Science and a FAI skydiving licence, I'm quietly confident of seeing through anyone's hype/BS on the subject. When I was skydiving, we exited from 12,000-13,000ft. Baumgartner's flight was literally an order of magnitude higher (128,097ft), faster (833.9mph), and far more technically complex and challenging.

Who exactly on this "trodden path" in history manned a balloon higher, exited higher, or flew faster and supersonic unaided by a vehicle?

The flight was pioneering aerospace exploration pushing an experimental flight envelope.

quote:
Originally posted by mjanovec:
Red Bull might call it a scientific mission, but without any stated scientific goals, it sounds more like a mission simply to break a record.
How about testing high-altitude survivability and supersonic flight unaided by a vehicle as objectives? According to Red Bull Stratos, the support team consisted of nearly 100 top experts recruited from diverse fields of science.

The world was a very different place in aerospace terms in 1960. There were no reusable space vehicles e.g. space shuttle and no immediate prospect of commercial (passenger) spaceflight. We now know it is possible for a human to potentially survive a catastrophic vehicle failure circa 130,000ft and return safely to earth. What is, with current technology, the potential maximum limit of survivability? 150,000ft should be theoretically possible, is 200,000ft feasible?

I wonder whether people's perception of the flight would be different if the name Red Bull was replaced with NASA, USAF, Zenith, Breitling, or Omega. Would the project be seen as more serious or worthy?

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-20-2012 05:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by yeknom-ecaps:
Listen to Chuck Yeager's comments on Felix's jump.
Yeager's comments are quite cryptic - who is he referring to that pioneered supersonic freefall from extreme altitude "14 or 15 years ago"?

Many have indicated an intention to attempt this activity over the years, but all publicly declared projects have not been successfully completed.

Anyone know if Yeager is referring to a previously undisclosed military freefall project circa 1998? Is Yeager mistakenly referencing Sqn. Ldr. Andy Green's Mach 1 land speed record from 1997?

issman1
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posted 10-20-2012 07:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for issman1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If Baumgartner's jump from the same height as SRB staging on a shuttle mission merited little/no scientific value, then John Glenn's hyped-up ride on the space shuttle also remains questionable. How exactly did his "research" benefit life on Earth?

At least someone attempted to emulate Kittinger's 1960 record, hyped-up or not, whereas no follow-on research was done by NASA with another elderly astronaut after Glenn's 1998 mission (even though I recall many pushed for Mercury 13 candidate Jerrie Cobb to get a flight - ultimately thwarted by NASA in a way not unlike Dennis Tito's historic ISS visit almost was).

Apparently a year's worth of medical samples will return with Dragon at the end of CRS-1, yet no flight for an ISS crewmember aged over 70. Baumgartner's jump may have been sponsored by a drink company whereas Glenn was paid for by US taxpayers.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-20-2012 07:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by issman1:
How exactly did his "research" benefit life on Earth?
As mentioned here, the studies aboard STS-95 resulted in more than 70 scientific papers, and was the focus of a medical symposium in June 2000.
quote:
...ultimately thwarted by NASA in a way not unlike Dennis Tito's historic ISS visit almost was
Cobb's flight was not thwarted by NASA; her participation on a flight was part of an effort pursuing partial commercialization of the shuttle, which ended with the loss of Columbia.

And NASA's initial objections to Tito flying were limited in scope. At the same time some in the space agency were raising (some valid) concerns, others were actively, but behind the scenes, championing the effort.

quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
I wonder whether people's perception of the flight would be different if the name Red Bull was replaced with NASA, USAF, Zenith, Breitling, or Omega. Would the project be seen as more serious or worthy?
I don't think the sponsor is an issue, at least not for me. This is not a question of commercial vs. government, or prestige vs. pop culture, in my opinion.

issman1
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posted 10-20-2012 08:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for issman1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Studies is one thing but something tangible like a patented prescription drug or medical therapy is what I define as the benefits of such hyped-up space research.

But why no follow-on mission on board the ISS? There are plenty of candidates NASA can assess.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-20-2012 08:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Then, for example, you seem to also disqualify decades of research into cancer and other diseases, which also resulted in no tangible drug or therapy.

But Glenn's presence on STS-95 was also a stunt, one that was celebrated by many and well-deserved, in my opinion.

issman1
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posted 10-20-2012 08:20 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for issman1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Not at all, I actually venerate the scientific research done on Skylab, Salyut, Mir, Shuttle and todays ISS.

My criticism is exclusively about Glenn's role on STS-95. Flying him for the sake of it is fine - as he should have flown during Gemini or Apollo - but to suggest his flight was primarily research is misleading. It was the pretext.

In any scientific experiment a follow-on is done for the purpose of comparison. That none was done with either Glenn or another elderly astronaut (yes, Story Musgrave flew aged 61 in 1996 and Pavel Vinogradov will fly aged 59 in 2013) proves it was every bit a stunt like Baumgartner.

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-20-2012 11:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
A valid argument could be made that Apollo 8 was a stunt, if considered within the larger context of the Space Race, which itself was built upon a series of stunts aimed primarily at political one-upmanship.

The decision to fly Apollo 8 around the moon wasn't done out of an interest in science or for the betterment of humanity; it was done to beat the Russians to the moon.

For that matter, Apollo 11 didn't land on the moon to return moon rocks or deploy a seismometer; it was sent to beat the Russians to the moon.


quote:
Originally posted by mjanovec:
A lot of great science was conducted with the Apollo program (not to mention Mercury and Gemini). But it was not the driving force behind the program (or Kennedy's goal).
Ok, let's go back to September 12, 1962 and the John F. Kennedy Moon Speech - Rice Stadium
William Bradford, speaking in 1630 of the founding of the Plymouth Bay Colony, said that all great and honorable actions are accompanied with great difficulties, and both must be enterprised and overcome with answerable courage.

If this capsule history of our progress teaches us anything, it is that man, in his quest for knowledge and progress, is determined and cannot be deterred. The exploration of space will go ahead, whether we join in it or not, and it is one of the great adventures of all time, and no nation which expects to be the leader of other nations can expect to stay behind in the race for space.

Those who came before us made certain that this country rode the first waves of the industrial revolutions, the first waves of modern invention, and the first wave of nuclear power, and this generation does not intend to founder in the backwash of the coming age of space. We mean to be a part of it--we mean to lead it. For the eyes of the world now look into space, to the moon and to the planets beyond, and we have vowed that we shall not see it governed by a hostile flag of conquest, but by a banner of freedom and peace. We have vowed that we shall not see space filled with weapons of mass destruction, but with instruments of knowledge and understanding.

Yet the vows of this Nation can only be fulfilled if we in this Nation are first, and, therefore, we intend to be first. In short, our leadership in science and in industry, our hopes for peace and security, our obligations to ourselves as well as others, all require us to make this effort, to solve these mysteries, to solve them for the good of all men, and to become the world's leading space-faring nation.

We set sail on this new sea because there is new knowledge to be gained, and new rights to be won, and they must be won and used for the progress of all people. For space science, like nuclear science and all technology, has no conscience of its own. Whether it will become a force for good or ill depends on man, and only if the United States occupies a position of pre-eminence can we help decide whether this new ocean will be a sea of peace or a new terrifying theater of war.

The growth of our science and education will be enriched by new knowledge of our universe and environment, by new techniques of learning and mapping and observation, by new tools and computers for industry, medicine, the home as well as the school.

Many years ago the great British explorer George Mallory, who was to die on Mount Everest, was asked why did he want to climb it. He said, "Because it is there."

Well, space is there, and we're going to climb it, and the moon and the planets are there, and new hopes for knowledge and peace are there. And, therefore, as we set sail we ask God's blessing on the most hazardous and dangerous and greatest adventure on which man has ever embarked.

Science (from Latin scientia, meaning "knowledge") was not an afterthought bolted on after the US beat the Russians to the Moon, it is the absolute reason why the US beat the Russians to the Moon. To suggest that Apollo was all about beating the Russians and then throwing in some science at the end, is to put the cart before the horse.

Applied, interdisciplinary, physical and life science was fundamental to the development of the manned spaceflight program rockets, vehicles, materials, hardware, software, etc. Only by making that technical journey first on the ground and then in space, could the US hope to be peacefully pre-eminent through technological superiority.

Apollo was about being being technologically superior, bold, and first. By using brilliant scientists to build the most superbly engineered rockets, and then asking the best test pilots to fly them further, higher, and faster where no one had gone before.

Apollo 8 and 11 were about proving flight and landing capability and scheduled to be firsts, Apollo 12 proving pin-point landing capability to pave the way for Apollo 13-17. If scientific exploration (knowledge exploration) was not always the principal objective, then the US could have stopped risking lives after Apollo 11 and 12. Why continue flying unless the overall higher program objective had not been completed?

The Russians sought to dismiss Apollo 11 as a meaningless propaganda stunt because they wanted to demean, degrade, and downplay the endeavour. Yet we know they were feverishly chasing the exact same goal, but just could not match the US technically. In reality both sides seriously respected each others achievements in space.

HERE MEN FROM THE PLANET EARTH FIRST SET FOOT UPON THE MOON JULY 1969, A.D. WE CAME IN PEACE FOR ALL MANKIND
The Apollo 11 plaque inscription does not say:
"HERE MEN FROM THE UNITED STATES FIRST SET FOOT UPON THE MOON JULY 1969 A.D. WE CAME TO BEAT THE RUSSIANS"
The statement, "WE CAME IN PEACE FOR ALL MANKIND" is derived from the 1958 National Aeronautics and Space Act's declaration of policy and purpose:
The Congress hereby declares that it is the policy of the United States that activities in space should be devoted to peaceful purposes for the benefit of all mankind.
Ultimately, the manned spaceflight program was always about pre-eminence in the science of spaceflight and exploration, not performing stunts.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-20-2012 11:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
Ok, let's go back to September 12, 1962...
I think a much more telling and insightful look into Kennedy's reasons for going to the moon are not the carefully crafted public speeches designed to sell a nation on the tremendous expenditures needed for Apollo, but rather his comments behind closed doors, as he had recorded in the White House, between his science adviser, NASA's administrator and himself...

Everything that we ought to really be tied into getting onto the Moon ahead of the Russians. ...the only justification for it ...is because we hope to beat them.
quote:
Ultimately, the manned spaceflight program was always about pre-eminence in the science of spaceflight and exploration, not performing stunts.
As the recording above demonstrates, Kennedy refutes this very point. It wasn't about preeminence in space; the U.S. already claimed preeminence, nor was it about science. Kennedy was arguing to forgo the Ranger and Surveyor precursor science programs, which is in part what led to the above discussion.

Webb, to his credit, very much believed that science should be the driving force for the nation's space program and that it shouldn't only be focused on beating the Russians in a race, but that was clearly Kennedy's primary interest and objective.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-20-2012 12:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Further, Kennedy himself acknowledged Apollo as a stunt and sought ways to address what he assumed would be scrutiny when it began to appear to the public as a stunt. From a recorded White House conversation with Webb:
"Why should we spend that kind of dough to put a man on the moon? (break) But it seems to me what we've got to try and do, is for the reasons you suggested: we've got to wrap around in this country, a military use for what we're doing and spending in space. If we don't, it does look like a stunt and too much money...

I think it's the only way we're going to be able to defend it before the public in the next 12 months. We're not going to have anything spectacular ourselves and if the Russians don't have any, it's going to be open season next year (break). But I'd like to see what we could do to get the military, you said they're holding out, but we can, we can give this thing a military slant. In the final - we can justify the military or national security route much better than we can justify the prestige these days. (break)

So while Webb argues that Apollo can be sold as "a basic ability in this nation to use science and very advanced technologies to increase national power," Kennedy rejects that argument ("prestige") and seeks a military justification instead. He even agrees that putting the military in charge of Apollo might be an option...
Webb: Would you be better off thinking about '64 in the political year, if you just took a military man and put him in charge of this program?

President Kennedy: That is a way, I don't think that what we ought to do now, but I am concerned that I have a - I think this can be an asset, this program. I think in time, it's like a lot of things, this is mid journey and therefore everybody says 'what the hell are we making this trip for' but at the end of the thing they may be glad we made it. But we've got to defend ourselves now and I think that at least its occurred to me that unless the Russians do something spectacular, the only way we can defend ourselves is if we put a national security rather than a prestige label on this.

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-21-2012 09:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
It wasn't about preeminence in space; the U.S. already claimed preeminence, nor was it about science.

Webb, to his credit, very much believed that science should be the driving force for the nation's space program and that it shouldn't only be focused on beating the Russians in a race, but that was clearly Kennedy's primary interest and objective.


I would continue to say that the manned spaceflight program was always about seeking pre-eminence in the science of spaceflight and exploration.

Every single spaceflight from the pioneering days of Project Mercury right through to the final flight of the Space Shuttle Program has been, in essence, a scientific mission. The Space Shuttle remained an experimental vehicle itself just as the Mercury capsules were, all focused on pushing the boundaries of human knowledge. Science experiments performed onboard or launched from spaceflights were in addition to the science of flight/operation of the vehicles themselves.

Going back to the pioneers of modern rocketry and astronautics: Tsiolkovsky's 1903 The Exploration of Cosmic Space by Means of Reaction Devices, Goddard's 1919 A Method of Reaching Extreme Altitudes, and Oberth's 1923 By Rocket into Planetary Space, these pioneers were envisioning a future for mankind in space.

World War II 1939-1945 saw the science of modern rocketry used for tactical and strategic military advantage. At the end of the war, Operation Paperclip was implemented by the US OSS/JIOA to deny German scientific knowledge, expertise, and equipment to the rest of the world.

President Eisenhower approved a plan to orbit a scientific satellite as part of the International Geophysical Year (IGY) for the period 1957-1958, a cooperative effort to gather scientific data about the Earth. The Soviet Union quickly jumped in and announced plans to orbit its own satellite.

When Sputnik I was launched in 1957, there was an inate US fear that the Russians could and would militarily dominate the ‘high ground’ of space and that the US absolutely had to counter that threat.

Eisenhower recognised that only by becoming pre-eminent in science and technology, could the US gain the real competitive edge necessary to catch, surpass, be militarily superior to the Russians, and ultimately be peaceful leaders in space and space exploration. This led to Project Manhigh, the 1958 National Aeronautics and Space Act, NASA, Project Excelsior, and Project Mercury.

Manned spaceflight was in its infancy during Kennedy's presidency. NASA Administrator James Webb and others were having to explain to Kennedy and the American people the vision of spaceflight. Kennedy, as a cold war leader and politician not a scientist, may have had private doubts and been focused on beating the Russians, but that objective was, in reality, to seek technical supremacy. Exactly what Webb and others were advocating that the program should be about - pre-eminence in science and technology.

How exactly does one practically go about beating the Russians and cementing the moral superiority of the Free World? Answer: By attaining and maintaining scientific technological primacy and pre-eminence. By developing and applying the best rocket science, materials science, engineering science, computer science, life science etc. As Webb reassured the president, the space program would deliver:

A basic ability in this nation to use science and very advanced technologies to increase national power – our economy all the way through.

While you’re President, this is going to come true in this country. So you’re going to have both science and technology appreciating your leadership in this field.

Kennedy and military astronauts may have had personal views on the reasons for the space program, but it does not mean the vision expressed at Rice Stadium was invalid. The space program was more than one man who died 5 years before mankind ever reached the Moon. Kennedy may have articulated a vision, but it was Webb and NASA and thousands of American scientists, engineers, and technicians who were charged with actually realizing that vision.

Kennedy said it best:

Its conquest deserves the best of all mankind, and its opportunity for peaceful cooperation may never come again. But why, some say, the moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.

He never lived to see the goal attained, and we'll never know if he truly believed in it or not, but he was ultimately, absolutely correct.

You have to do the hard, serious science first and get it right, before you can ever think or dream of setting records or beating others. The laws of physics will quickly remind you of that fact if you ever lose focus, even for an instant.

Red Bull did not have to participate in the Stratos project in order to sell their product. They were doing just fine as they were, and there are far safer, easier, quicker, and cheaper ways to push their product. Had the company been about to go bankrupt and the Stratos project was a last ditch 'Hail Mary' play to revitalise the brand and save the company, then one might legitimately suspect them of asking a man to risk his life for the sake of publicity.

Red Bull Stratos was always about something more - about exploring technical limits, realizing human potential, and pushing the envelope.

gliderpilotuk
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posted 10-22-2012 04:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
Red Bull Stratos was always about something more - about exploring technical limits, realizing human potential, and pushing the envelope.
Well said.

I bet Steve Fossett would be turning in his grave at the thought that anything he did was a mere "stunt".

moorouge
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posted 10-22-2012 08:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for moorouge   Click Here to Email moorouge     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Why do people always, almost without exception, leave out the most important part of Kennedy's speech? He said also:
It means a degree of dedication, organisation and discipline which has not always characterised... our efforts. It means we cannot afford undue work stoppages, inflated costs of materials or talent, wasteful inter-agency rivalries, or a high turnover of key personnel. (Everyone must give)... his personal pledge that this nation will move forward with full speed of freedom in the exciting adventure of space.
Yes, a consideration was, as has been pointed out, 'to beat the Russians.' But he was also more interested in reviving the US economy. NASA had plans to go to the Moon in October 1960. Kennedy simply used them to kill two birds with one stone.

cycleroadie
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posted 10-22-2012 08:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cycleroadie   Click Here to Email cycleroadie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Wow, can't believe this thread is still going. My 2 cents:
  1. Felix, stunt or not a stunt, I think not but in either case, he has bigger cajones than anyone on this forum.

  2. Apollo program just a stunt? Robert, no offense, but walk up to Buzz and tell him that. I have some frozen peas for that black eye.

gliderpilotuk
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posted 10-22-2012 12:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by cycleroadie:
I think not but in either case, he has bigger cajones than anyone on this forum.
cajones = furniture "drawers." Is that what you really meant or don't you have the cOjones?

328KF
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posted 10-22-2012 02:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The two hour documentary on the Red Bull Stratos project will premier November 11 at 7PM. The Society's website does not specify the air date, but Baumgartner was on Fox News today and it was mentioned there.

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-22-2012 04:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
John Logsdon, Professor Emeritus at the Space Policy Institute George Washington University and author of John F. Kennedy and the Race to the Moon, provides useful insights into Kennedy's thinking regarding the space program from 1962-1963.

What is clear is that during the hiatus between Mercury and Gemini in late 1963, in the face of mounting expense and waning support, Project Apollo was going to be a monumental act of faith and a leap into the unknown. Eisenhower, Kennedy, and McNamara all experienced doubts about the value of going to the Moon. Webb had argued in late 1962 that the real goal was space pre-eminence, but that argument had not allayed the President's concerns about the risky project.

During the September 18, 1963 meeting between Kennedy and Webb, the President referred to the perception of putting a man on the Moon as being an expensive stunt partly because of the program cost, partly because of the mistaken belief that scientific instruments could substitute for a manned lunar landing and at a lower cost, and partly because of Kennedy's incomplete comprehension of the technical challenge and the benefits that would result. Very few people in 1963 could have truly imagined the scale of the endeavour of putting a man on the Moon. Years later, the crew of Apollo 1 would ultimately sacrifice their lives for so much more than a mere stunt.

Webb tried to impress upon the President the enormity of the technical challenge:

"We’ll have worked to fly by though while you’re President but it’s going to take longer than that. This is a tough job, a real tough job."
Such was his concern, Kennedy considered a theme he had first raised in his Inaugural Address, where he had said to the Soviet Union:
“let us explore the stars together”
In his September 20, 1963 speech to the UN General Assembly, Kennedy called for enhanced US-Soviet space cooperation, and on November 12, 1963 directed Webb to take the lead in preparing specific proposals for a joint US-Soviet lunar mission.

On November 16, 1963, Kennedy visited Cape Canaveral. NASA Associate Administrator Robert Seamans, who accompanied Kennedy on the visit, later commented that:

“Maybe for the first time, [he] began to realize the dimensions of these projects.”
The visit re-energized Kennedy’s excitement about the space program, and seemed to resolve many of the doubts he had expressed in the September 18 meeting. At the dedication of the Aerospace Medical Health Center in San Antonio, Texas on November 21, 1963, Kennedy reaffirmed his commitment to the space program, and embraced the challenges that the country faced in its quest to reach the Moon:
"This Nation has tossed its cap over the wall of space, and we have no choice but to follow it. Whatever the difficulties, they will be overcome."
In remarks prepared for delivery in Dallas on November 22, Kennedy would have said:
“The United States of America has no intention of finishing second in space. This effort is expensive—but it pays its way for freedom and for America.”
This comment on space leadership would be a direct echo of his speech at Rice Stadium on September 12, 1962:
"Yet the vows of this Nation can only be fulfilled if we in this Nation are first, and, therefore, we intend to be first. In short, our leadership in science and in industry, our hopes for peace and security, our obligations to ourselves as well as others, all require us to make this effort, to solve these mysteries, to solve them for the good of all men, and to become the world's leading space-faring nation.

Paul78zephyr
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posted 10-22-2012 04:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by YankeeClipper:
Red Bull did not have to participate in the Stratos project in order to sell their product.
We are raised practically from birth at the teat of corporate propaganda. Eventually we know not what real milk is anymore.

YankeeClipper
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posted 10-22-2012 07:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Paul78zephyr:
Eventually we know not what real milk is anymore.
I do know one thing - if I was punching Mach 1.24 from 128 grand, I would not be on Red Bull!


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