The relay satellite included two micro-satellites for the moon, only one of them survived: http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2018/20180615-que...
 I mean I was aware of Lagrange points, but not the practicality of the halo orbit. This is a nice explanation:
>A full n-body dynamical system such as the Solar System does not contain these periodic orbits, but does contain quasi-periodic (i.e. bounded but not precisely repeating) orbits following Lissajous-curve trajectories. These quasi-periodic Lissajous orbits are what most of Lagrangian-point space missions have used until now. Although they are not perfectly stable, a modest effort of station keeping keeps a spacecraft in a desired Lissajous orbit for a long time.
The money would probably be better spent on several projects (e.g. AI, hypersonic flight).
With air being so dense and power-dissipating, it might be more economical to do a sub-orbital jump than to push through the atmosphere at 7M. For short-range military applications, iirc, hypersonic rockets exist.
You've gotta consider how much things change as you get higher into the atmosphere. The obvious thing is that atmospheric oxygen begins to become insufficient to operate engines as you go higher up, so you need engines that use a different oxidizer than atmospheric oxygen which is extremely complex. And even the efficiency and characteristic of engine exhaust changes radically depending on atmospheric density and the characteristics of its exhaust. In other words an engine that works great at sea level might work awfully when you start to get to a fraction of the same pressure.
There's an immense amount of flexibility in being able to travel hypersonic. The SR-71 Blackbird is an amazing example of the potential. First flown back in 1964 (!!) it was capable of hitting around mach 3, some 2200 miles per hour. That's 6 hours to get from one side of the Earth to the other. It's really quite remarkable how much our overall transportation technology seems to have stagnated since the 60s. I'd like to imagine everything is just classified but everything from the SLS to the F-35 to even things like the Zumwalt just seems to indicate that we've simply technology regressed. Kind of disconcerting to imagine the reasons for that.
Hypersonic is five or six times the speed of sound.
It would of course be nice to have both.
The Trump Administration wants a Space Force, for example:
And people wonder why the US is falling apart and technological advances have slowed down.
We're living hand to mouth instead of investing in the future. The sad thing is that many of our problems could be solved permanently via technology rather than government.
Instead of creating the automobile people are trying to make horses faster
China is wasting trillions building infrastructure in other countries.
The problem with war is that no matter which side wins, both side will always in some way hate each other (Once war started, it will never end).
While even in the worse scenario, locals can still benefit from the infrastructure. Booming strategy is something Chinese people play very well.
I don't think anyone wonders why it's happening. They just feel powerless to change anything.
abolish government, libertarian paradise, ???, solve problems
I would expect some nationalistic fervor that would help fund a space race would come from US conservatives.
But in the US the "conservative" side of politics seems more interested in short term tax cuts for corporations, dismantling government, and hating on immigrants, and other Americans...
I have my doubts the US would step up.
I don't know what you're trying to say.
The only ones willing to stand up to the hypocrisy of Trump and actually represent conservatism have been sidelined consistently.
The US only spends $20 billion a year on NASA.
> Please don't impute astroturfing or shillage. That degrades discussion and is usually mistaken. If you're worried about it, email us and we'll look at the data.
Is there any scientific/experimental reason for this, or is it just a symbolic gesture?
Seems like an experimental attempt to create a "Moon Surface Micro Ecosystem". Not sure how legit it is though.
This is in contrast to places with a non-trivial atmosphere or standing liquids, which may moderate the environment enough that something could conceivably live. Something could conceivably live on Mars, something that isn't even necessarily that far from some things that live on Earth. Nothing will live on the Moon. You can fling as many gallons of the scummiest pond water you can find from any pond water on Earth on the moon, and you're not going to "contaminate" it with life.
Needless to say, most scientists aren't fans of the second option.
Incidentally, long-term it would be possible to achieve 1g on the moon by way of a similarly huge centrifuge.
The compartments would have to be tilted relative to the centrifuge, such that down becomes properly down.
How can you "hang" something in microgravity
Failed, I presume.