27 thoughts on “Paul Wooster – SpaceX's Plans for Mars – 21st Annual International Mars Society Convention

  • The Mars Cult Society deadly program for young indoctrinated suicidal souls – share pls http://www.drturi.com/the-mars-cult-society/

  • One thing they don't talk about for In Situ Resource Utilisation, specifically manufacturing propellant, is numbers. According to this reference (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabatier_reaction#Manufacturing_propellant_on_Mars) generating 1 ton of fuel requires 17 MWh. To fully refuel a BFR requires 1100 tons of fuel.

    Assume you're only refuelling one BFR and are using the 16 month window between Earth Mars and Mars Earth Hohmann transfers. That's 480 days or 11520 hours, or 95 kg of propellants per hour. Call it 100kg to allow for (very low) handling and storage losses, and you still need a power input of 1.7 MW, or 170 10Kw Kilopower reactors at 226 kg each (38420 kg or 38.5 tons). The LANL Megapower reactor (35 to 45 tons, 2 MWe/5MWth) would work as well. The Sabatier reactor (based on scaling up the reference design) is another 5 tons.

    That's not including the mining equipment and or rovers you need to extract the needed water. Mini Excavators range between 2 and 8 tons. You need two for redundancy plus spare parts. So between 10 and 20 tons for mining equipment, though these will also be useful in setting up the installation as cranes or tractor units.

    Using worst case estimates, the total mass is 70 tons. So it could be done, but you're pretty much going to have to dedicate a Cargo BFR pretty much to ISRU components.

    LANL Megapower reactor – https://www.nextbigfuture.com/2018/01/kilopower-megapower-reactors-would-revolutionize-energy-safety-and-space-and-military-applications.html

  • No matter how much infrastructure you build, people will not go there unless there is some advantage to it, how will they make money? Artifacts, resources or freedom, those are the things that traditionally draw people.

  • That montage of the Falcon Heavy launch gave me goosebumps. Just to correct the host, the Tesla Roadster will not be out there until it disintegrates. It will be recovered and brought back to Earth (or perhaps Mars) one day to be put on display as a sacred artefact. Long live Elon Musk!

  • I wonder if the vacuum engines would end up being the most efficient ones to be used in martian ascent and descent with such low atmospheric pressure.

  • Im curious – the month long dust storm on mars that effectively shut down the rover- is this latest martian "threat" being taken into account in plans to settle mars? i'm all for humans landing on mars by 2024 but kind of hoping we have backup plans on learnings from these (ie perhaps having to build backup storage that may last these dust storms if solar infrastructure fails during such super storms)

  • Engineers should not give presentations…you know? Write the presentation, make the pretty pictorials, and then give it to someone who can speak in public without stumbling over the words. And when is SpaceX going to address the affects zero-G on passengers and crew during the 9 month journey to Mars? Mechanically, they've got their sh*t together. When it comes to human factors, not so much. Make the BFS capable to creating artificial gravity and many of the negative effects of zero-G can be ameliorated.

  • He either ignored or forgot to say WHEN this second stage or ‘ship’ is going to be tested, he only confirmed where… anyone know?

  • Ya ya, the rockets are good, but humans CANNOT live comfortably on another planet, or even long-term space travel without gravity. You need to for example to launch in pairs and tether so as to fly through space like a bolo, to create gravitational effect as on earth. In tethered pairs you can live orbiting another planet and mine or replenish materials, but you CANNOT live on another planet's or moon's surface. Qualify my comment? I am just an ex-tech from Department of National Defence with a measured IQ of 144.

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