Asteroids is not a game


Global Warming is at best an arguable, unproven theory. Asteroids are very real and one just passed the earth at a extremely close distance. One could kill most people on the planet if it hit us.

The one that hit Russia yesterday was estimated the meteor released the energy equivalent of nearly 500 kilotons of TNT. That’s about 30 times the power of the Hiroshima atomic bomb. It exploded in the atmosphere. If it had hit a major city it would have been a major catastrophe.

Politicians and cranks want to waste billions fighting AGW. This is a real issue that needs solutions.

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  1. They say at least a dozen Russians caught the meteorite strike on video.

    Dashboard cameras are very common in Russia… There are so many auto accidents over there — roughly double the American rate(!) — and such corruption amongst law enforcement that video is even more vital for proving cases of negligence, police brutality, and fraud.

    I only saw one of these meteorite videos and it was enough.

    It was like looking at an A-bomb test! It had to be frightening for most everybody over there. Perhaps the last time something remotely like this happened was Tunguska but they didn’t have video cameras back then and unfortunately just about anyone who witnessed it nearby would have been killed.

    So far, I’ve heard about nothing but minor injuries and glass shattered by the sonic boom(s) created by the meteorite.

  2. The only kind of device that we have that could be of any benefit to DEFLECTING an asteroid/meteor strike would a high megaton nuclear device (H-bomb). There’s nothing else that I can remotely conceive of in existence that would work… NOW.

    The big problem is delivery to an objective in time. The most practical delivery vehicle would be at least a Saturn 1B class rocket, or, better yet, heavy lift class like a Saturn V or Energia booster. I’d think the existing boosters are too small to send a big enough mass far out enough from Earth to reach a deflection point in time. Even with the type of heavy booster built in the past, a nuclear device would have to be “shaved” to the minimal weight. I forget the exact mass figures but they projected a much smaller vehicle could be sent to Mars with a Saturn V rocket. Anything significantly larger — Apollo CSM/LM size — would require a much larger rocket codenamed “Nova” which was cancelled after a short period of development.

    The problem is that none of these vehicles have been built in decades. Even if we follow the existing blueprints, it took the previous generations years (well over a decade, really) to learn how to build rockets properly. The knowledge and skill to properly build these things has literally been retired along with the S-V engineers and machinists. It wasn’t just that the technology stretched the limits of material sciences but also — like today — that quality control wasn’t always the best. I can’t remember how many times I’ve read of accidents in aerospace being related to improperly fastened parts, bad wiring, and anything else of a million parts/things that could have been put together the wrong way. Happens more often than it should with big government projects but the reality is that in some cases you really DO have to reinvent the wheel!

    (Example: The Blackbird program. In a way this was parallel to what happened with rocketry development post-World War II. Little in existence could be used on the vehicle due to the higher speeds, higher altitudes, and higher temperatures. The program was delayed 3-5 years from operational use by development difficulties. The engines and inlets were the worst problems but technical issues arose with just about every other major system, too. Almost everything from the landing gear tires to the cockpit windows had to be specially made for this airplane. Being built of 90%+ titanium made the plane a particular pain to build and all 50 Blackbirds {A-12, YF-12A, M-21, SR-71A/B/C} were hand-built. Again, it took about eight years of work to make the Blackbird SAFE enough to practically operate and even then the engine/inlet issues weren’t completely resolved until a digital engine control system was installed in the early 1980s.)

    The national will isn’t there to build such vehicles anymore. We have politicians spinning in their chairs and the most irresponsible president in my lifetime— that’s saying quite a bit considering the previous parade of clowns over the past quarter-century.

    I think our Congress and quite a few lay people are kidding themselves when they think private business is going to take care of all major space matters. A new heavy booster won’t be certified in anything less than a decade — perhaps two — by private industry. This goal was accomplished in roughly 8 years (1959-1967) in the 1960s. It had the benefit of studies being begun by the military rocketry programs before NASA really came into play. The formal moon program really didn’t begin until 1961.

    I just don’t see anybody taking this asteroid/space junk problem seriously until a major disaster has taken place. Private industry is just too risk-averse unless someone else is footing the bill!

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