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SpaceX’s Starship toppled, severely damaged during overnight storm

Image tweeted by SpaceX's Elon Musk of components that will be used to prepare the new Starship vehicle for flight. Photo Credit: Elon Musk / SpaceX

Image tweeted by SpaceX’s Elon Musk of components that will be used to prepare the new Starship vehicle for flight. Photo Credit: Elon Musk / SpaceX

In the overnight hours of Jan. 22 and 23, SpaceX’s Starship Hopper test article was severely damaged by strong winds at the SpaceX South Texas launch facility.

As seen in photos posted on NASASpaceFlight.com that were taken by bocachicagal, the nose cone fell over in high winds and experienced significant damage. The lower section of the hopper, which houses fuel tanks, the engines, and the landing legs, appears to be undamaged. Two sections were separated from one another in recent days to allow fuel and oxidizer tanks to be installed. It is not presently known how this might delay the first flight of the Hopper. Musk tweeted the following regarding last night’s incident:

I just heard. 50 mph winds broke the mooring blocks late last night & fairing was blown over. Will take a few weeks to repair.

Damage to SpaceX's Starship hopper can be seen in these images. Photos courtesy of NASASpaceFlight / bocachicagal

Damage to SpaceX’s Starship hopper can be seen in these images. Photos courtesy of NASASpaceFlight / bocachicagal

The National Weather Service office in Brownsville, Texas issued wind advisories for several South Texas counties along the coast, including Cameron County where the launch site is located. The advisories stated that north winds of 30-40 MPH, with gusts of 45 MPH, were to be expected due to a strong cold front passing through the state.

SpaceX’s Starship Hopper is the sub-orbital test article for SpaceX’s Starship and Super Heavy launch vehicle. The hopper is designed to test concepts on a small-scale before implementing them on the full-sized Super Heavy and Starship. The structure of the hopper is made up of stainless-steel panels and is powered by three Raptor engines.

SpaceX plans to use Super Heavy and Starship to transport people to the Moon and Mars. The vehicle will eventually replace their current Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy launch vehicles.

 

 

 

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Patrick Attwell is a native of Houston, Texas but he currently resides in Austin, Texas where he studies accounting at Concordia University Texas. Atwell has had a passion for all things pertaining to aerospace, rocketry, and aviation. Atwell has worked to cover these fields for more than a decade. After he attended and watched the launch of NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission it gave him what is known in the space community as “rocket fever.” Since that time, Atwell has followed his dreams and has covered events dealing with NASA’s Commercial Crew flight assignments at NASA’s Johnson Space Center and other space-related events in the Lone Star State.

Reader Comments

James Lunar Miner

“SpaceX plans to use Super Heavy and Starship to transport people to the Moon and Mars.” – Patrick Attwell

That sounds like a really bad plan for inefficiently and slowly transporting people to Mars and cooking them with unwanted, unhealthy, and avoidable high amounts of space radiation.

The game changers will that leave SpaceX’s technologically obsolete, slow, and grossly propellant inefficient 380 Isp and fossil fueled flying smokestack BFR/Starship/space bomber/Stars Wars II satellite launching spacecraft in the dust will be the vastly higher propellant efficiency and much higher delta-v capabilities of Chinese, Russian, European, American, and Japanese reusable space tugs that use highly propellant efficient 900 Isp nuclear thermal rocket engines or 6,000-9,6200+ Isp solar or nuclear powered electric propulsion systems like:

“The pre-prototype HiPEP produced 670 mN of thrust at a power level of 39.3 kW using 7.0 mg/s of fuel giving a specific impulse of 9620 s.[2][4] Downrated to 24.4 kW, the HiPEP used 5.6 mg/s of fuel giving a specific impulse of 8270 s and 460 mN of thrust.”

“High Power Electric Propulsion” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Power_Electric_Propulsion

James Lunar Miner

Russia is working on propellant efficient, high Isp, and fast nuclear-powered propulsion spacecraft and so are NASA and China, yet Mars colonies soon cult folks on the Internet expect that everyone worship the slow and fossil fueled BFR/Starship/space bomber/Stars Wars II satellite launching spacecraft.
Note:
“Nuclear propulsion weighs almost half as much as a chemical rocket”
And, “The $274 million project, which was originally overseen by the space agency RosCosmos in 2010, has now become the responsibility of nuclear group, Rosatom.
And, “Engineers at Nasa have also been drawing up plans to use nuclear thermal propulsion in a mission to Mars in 2033.”
From: “Move over Nasa: Russia reveals plans for 2018 test of nuclear engine that could get cosmonauts to Mars in SIX WEEKS”
At: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3495426/Move-Nasa-Russia-reveals-plans-2018-test-nuclear-engine-cosmonauts-Mars-SIX-WEEKS.html

James Lunar Miner

Do we want to win our Cold War II with fast, cost effective, propellant efficient, and high 900+ Isp to 14,000+ Isp solar and nuclear powered reusable spacecraft or fail to win by instead hugging the slow, overweight, and grossly propellant inefficient 380 Isp fossil fueled SpaceX Mars cult Starship and ignoring our real high tech competitors that are trying to dominate in Cislunar Space, the Moon, and beyond?

“Amidst the deterioration in relation between both sides over a potential US-led military strike in Middle East after Douma chemical attack and poisoning of the Skripals, Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, told a meeting of the UN Security Council in April 2018 that ‘the Cold War was back with a vengeance’. He suggested the dangers were even greater as the safeguards that existed to manage such a crisis earlier, ‘no longer seem to be present’.”

“Cold War II” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cold_War_II

“If Russia is able to harness nuclear energy to power long duration space missions by 2025, it would give them a significant lead in the modern space race. Nuclear energy has significant advantages for deep space missions, in which the ability to carry fuel is a limiting factor in determining a mission’s duration.”

From: “Nuclear Space Propulsion Breakthrough from Russia” By Ines Hernandez 4/11/2012
At : http://www.spacesafetymagazine.com/aerospace-engineering/nuclear-propulsion/russia-proposes-nuclear-space-propulsion-breakthrough/

“Russia plans to develop a nuclear propulsion system that will be available in 2017..” says an article from 4/11/2012

So where is it? It’s fantasy hardware; just drawings and power points. It doesn’t really exist. There is no actual metal being bent…

From: “Nuclear Space Propulsion Breakthrough from Russia” By Ines Hernandez 4/11/2012
At : http://www.spacesafetymagazine.com/aerospace-engineering/nuclear-propulsion/russia-proposes-nuclear-space-propulsion-breakthrough/

James Lunar Miner

“In July 2018, Michael Collins, deputy assistant director of the CIA’s East Asia mission center, told the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado that he believed China under paramount leader Xi Jinping, while unwilling to go to war, was waging a ‘quiet kind of cold war’ against the United States, seeking to replace the U.S. as the leading global power. He elaborated: ‘What they’re waging against us is fundamentally a cold war — a cold war not like we saw during THE Cold War (between the U.S. and the Soviet Union) but a cold war by definition.'[81]”

“Cold War II” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cold_War_II

Unfunded Potemkin Mars colonies and SpaceX’s grossly propellant inefficient fossil fueled Mars cult BFR/Starship aren’t helping us to find, mine, and use Lunar resources to cost effectively develop Cislunar Space and win our Cold War II.

Clearly, to efficiently find, mine, and use Lunar resources and win our Cold War II in Cislunar Space we need NASA’s international leadership, propellant efficient spacecraft, and business and space partners from many nations.

“Through an innovative combination of missions involving commercial and international partners, NASA’s robotic lunar surface missions will begin as early as 2020, focus on scientific understanding of lunar resources, and prepare the lunar surface for a sustained human presence, to include the use of lunar oxygen and hydrogen for future lunar vehicles.”

From: “NASA Seeks US Partners to Develop Reusable Systems to Land Astronauts on Moon”
Editor: Shanessa Jackson 12/13/2018
At: https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-seeks-us-partners-to-develop-reusable-systems-to-land-astronauts-on-moon

James Lunar Miner

Note this is the corrected source of this above quote:

“Through an innovative combination of missions involving commercial and international partners, NASA’s robotic lunar surface missions will begin as early as 2020, focus on scientific understanding of lunar resources, and prepare the lunar surface for a sustained human presence, to include the use of lunar oxygen and hydrogen for future lunar vehicles.”

“NASA’s Campaign to Return to the Moon with Global Partners”
Editor: Emily Furfaro 1/18/2019
At: https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-s-campaign-to-return-to-the-moon-with-global-partners

BeanCounterFromDownUnder

JLM
What has been actually funded? Then you can start talking about things that may happen. Until then it’s just ‘spin’.
Cheers
Neil

James Lunar Miner

Nuclear and solar powered electric propulsion systems will provide reusable space tugs with the super high propellant efficiency and cost effectiveness needed for commercial development and military dominance missions in Cislunar Space.

Note:

“The idea now being pursued by Russia’s Keldysh Research Centre is to use a small gas-cooled fission reactor aboard the rocket to turn a turbine and generator set and thereby produce electricity for a plasma thruster. The reactor unit should be developed about 2015, then life-service tests are planned for 2018. The first launches, are envisaged for about 2020.”

And, “The Director of Roskosmos says that development of megawatt-class nuclear space power systems for manned spacecraft is crucial if Russia wants to maintain a competitive edge in the space race, including the exploration of the moon and Mars.”

From: “Nuclear Reactors and Radioisotopes for Space”
Updated June 2018
At: http://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/non-power-nuclear-applications/transport/nuclear-reactors-for-space.aspx

James Lunar Miner

“RSC Energia specialists have patented a system of iodine storage and feeding for an advanced electrical rocket engine (ERE).”

And, “The advantage of the iodine thruster consists, first of all, in its cost efficiency. Existing electric thrusters traditionally use as propellant xenon, which is significantly more expensive than iodine. In addition to this, xenon storage and feeding system is fairly complex and bulky, which significantly increases the size and mass of the propulsion system.”

And, “The developers are going to conduct ground tests of the propulsion system as early as late June, – said one of the project managers, design engineer Pavel Shcherbina.”

And, “Scheduled for 2022 is the experiment ‘Ostrovsky’ which was named after the author of the idea. It is proposed to conduct the first part of the experiment onboard the ISS, while the second part will use a Progress logistics spacecraft.”

And, “After undocking the spacecraft will stay in orbit one more month to test the new iodine electrical rocket thrusters.”

From: “RSC Energia is working on a new electrical rocket engine”
By Klaus Schmidt 6/21/2018
At: https://spacefellowship.com/news/art53234/rsc-energia-is-working-on-a-new-electrical-rocket-engine.html

James Lunar Miner

Russia continues to gain real commercial and military experience in space with cost effective and highly propellant efficient electric propulsion systems and yet far too many confused American space cadets can only babble on about hating the SLS, international Orion, or Lunar resources while also endlessly and foolishly promoting the public relations spin on a slow, limited delta-v, grossly propellant inefficient, and fossil fueled “Starship” that is supposed to be the key to building unfunded Potemkin colonies on Mars.

“OKB Fakel (Russian ОКБ “Факел”) is a Russian electric propulsion system development company.”

And, “Many companies have used Fakel electrically powered spacecraft propulsion systems on their hardware flown in space. Company’s hardware were used on SESAT 1, Alphasat, SMART-1, LS-1300, Meteor spacecraft, USP bus, Amos-6, MobaHo!, Inmarsat-4 F3, Astra 1K, Luch, and many others as well.”

And, “Due to the large experience gained by the company in electric engines, notable companies have entered into partnership with the company.”

From: “OKB Fakel” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OKB_Fakel

James Lunar Miner

In our Cold War II attempt at space dominance in Cislunar Space and on the Moon, asteroids, and Mars, a blind dependence on a slow, propellant inefficient, fossil fueled, and low 380 Isp “Starship” is a silly idea when much more propellant efficient 900+ Isp nuclear thermal rocket engines and solar and nuclear powered 2,600 Isp to 14,000+ Isp electric propulsion systems will be available to Russia, China, and many other nations.

“Last year, NASA partnered with BWXT Nuclear Energy Inc. for an $18.8 million contract to design a reactor and develop fuel for use in a nuclear-thermal propulsion engine for deep-space travel. While that small start is a long way from the the heady days of the Space Race of the Cold War, it marks the U.S. return to an idea that is also being pursued by Russia and China.”

And, “Russia’s Rosatom Corp. has said it plans this year to test a prototype nuclear engine for a spacecraft that can go to Mars. Russia so far has led research in the field and has deployed more than 30 fission reactors in space, according to the World Nuclear Association.”

And “China aims to use atomic-powered shuttles as part of its space exploration plans through 2045, according to state Xinhua News Agency.”

From: “NASA Is Bringing Back Nuclear-Powered Rockets to Get to Mars” 2/15/2018
At: http://fortune.com/2018/02/15/nasa-nuclear-rockets-mars/

James Lunar Miner

Who is “Russia’s Rosatom Corp” that wants to soon test a “prototype nuclear engine for a spacecraft that can go to Mars”?

“Rosatom, (Russian: Росатом, tr. Rosatom, IPA: [rɐsˈatəm]) stylized as ROSATOM and also known as the Rosatom State Nuclear Energy Corporation, the State Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom, or the Rosatom State Corporation, is a Russian state corporation headquartered in Moscow that specializes in nuclear energy. Established in 2007, the organization comprises more than 360 enterprises, including scientific research organizations, the nuclear weapons complex, and the world’s only nuclear icebreaker fleet.”

And, “The state corporation is one of the leaders in the world’s nuclear energy industry. The organization ranks first as the largest electricity generating company in Russia, producing 202.868 bln kWh of electricity, 18.9% of the country’s total electricity production, in 2017.

And, “Rosatom is a nonprofit organization, and while its tasks include the development of nuclear energy, the growth of enterprises of the nuclear fuel cycle, and the fulfillment of the functions assigned to it by the state, it also ensures national security (nuclear deterrence), nuclear and radiation safety, as well as development of applied and fundamental science.”

And, “As of Jan 2017, the total portfolio orders of Rosatom reached $300 billion.[6]”

From: “Rosatom” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosatom

James Lunar Miner

The Cold War II Geo-strategic implications of using highly propellant efficient and cost effective high technology spacecraft for commercial and military Space Dominance on the Moon and in Cislunar Space are well understood in both Russia and China even as the confused supporters of the grossly propellant inefficient fossil fueled “Starship” and Potemkin Mars colonies continue to spin technobabble and political nonsense.

Note:

“The political vision for space, championed by the Chinese leadership, is to build internal capacity that can support a space presence and establish dominance and industrialization that would in turn enhance the national rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. This prospect is supported at the highest echelon of decision-making, with Lt. Gen. Zhang Yulin, former deputy chief of the armament development department of the Central Military Commission (CMC), now with the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Strategic Support Force (SSF). He has said that ‘The earth-moon space will be strategically important for the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.’”

And, “Zhang specified that:
The future of China’s manned space program, is not a moon landing, which is quite simple, or even the manned Mars program which remains difficult, but continual exploration of the earth-moon space with ever developing technology.”

From: “Waking Up to China’s Space Dream”
By Namrata Goswami 10/15/2018
At: https://thediplomat.com/2018/10/waking-up-to-chinas-space-dream/

James Lunar Miner

China will build the Long March 9 with a 140 (or more) metric ton LEO payload capability.
Russia will build the Soyuz-5 Heavy with 80 to 160 metric ton LEO payload capabilities.
America’s SLS could have a 150 (or more) metric ton LEO payload capability.

Other nations are also fully able to develop launchers capable of launching large, reusable, and highly propellant efficient electric propulsion based spacecraft with the inherent cost effective high delta-v capabilities that will enable a wide variety of commercial and military Space Dominance missions.

Yet SpaceX’s low delta-v, grossly propellant inefficient, and fossil fueled BFR/Starship/space bomber remains the darling of the confused and unhappy Mars colonies soon cult that continues to ignore the obvious:

“Solar electric propulsion allows deep-space missions to carry more cargo and use smaller launch vehicles while reducing mission costs.”

And, “The Solar Electric Propulsion project has developed solar arrays that are lighter, stronger, more compact, and less expensive than those currently available.”

And, “Solar electric propulsion provides such high fuel economy that it reduces the amount of propellant required onboard vehicles for deep-space missions by as much as 90 percent.”

And, “Solar electric propulsion will enable affordable human-crewed missions beyond low Earth orbit.”

From: “Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP)”
At: https://www1.grc.nasa.gov/space/sep/

James Lunar Miner

Exploring and eventually mining asteroids will have Cold War II political, economic, and Geo-strategic implications. Psyche is a NASA mission that will orbit and study the valuable metallic asteroid 16 Psyche.

Russia’s OKB Fakel’s SPT-140 with a 1,800 Isp will be used for the Psyche spacecraft’s super propellant efficient electric propulsion system.

“The SPT-140 (SPT stands for Stationary Plasma Thruster) is a production line commercial propulsion system[3] that was invented in Russia by OKB Fakel and developed by NASA’s Glenn Research Center, Space Systems Loral, and Pratt & Whitney since the late 1980s.”

And, “Using solar electric thrusters will allow the spacecraft to arrive at 16 Psyche (at 3.3 astronomical units) much faster while consuming only 10% of the propellant it would need using conventional chemical propulsion.”

From: “Psyche (spacecraft)” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psyche_(spacecraft)

And concerning OKB Fakel’s new and more powerful and super propellant efficient 3,200 Isp SPT-230 thruster that should be useful for LEO and Cislunar Space commercial and military Space Dominance missions:

“Abstract: This article presents the results of development
of the engineering model of the SPT-230 thruster with an operating power of up to 25 kW.”

From: “Development of stationary plasma thruster SPT-230 with discharge power of 10…15 kW”
By Pyatykh I.N., Bernikova M.Yu., Gopanchuk V.V., Gniz
dor R.Yu., Zhasan V.S., Katashova M.I., and Savchenko K.A October 2017
At: https://iepc2017.org/sites/default/files/speaker-papers/iepc-2017-548_0.pdf

James Lunar Miner

China’s growing Cold War II political and space capabilities include a sustained and eager scientific and technological focus on finding and mining Lunar resources to put it in position of domination in LEO, Cislunar Space, and the Home Planet while our pompous talking, highly partisan, and hyper ego inflated American politicians have nonscientific and geopolitical Potemkin space policies that do 180 degree zigs and zags every four or eight years and a government selected and promoted ‘space business leader’ makes shifting claims that are ‘backed up’ by an overweight and grossly propellant inefficient fossil fueled “Starship”.

“China, seeking to overcome their ‘century of humiliation,’ wants to become the next lunar power and best America in the process.”

And, “Whereas Americans view space and the moon as a desolate place, China sees this as the next zone of strategic economic, political and military competition between states—and the Chinese intend to get there first.”

And, “The future belongs to those who want it more. Maybe Thomas Friedman and Michael Mandelbaum were right: that used to be us.”

From: “Op-ed | China is beating the United States in the new space race”
By Brandon J. Weichert — February 1, 2019
At: https://spacenews.com/op-ed-china-is-beating-the-united-states-in-the-new-space-race/

James Lunar Miner

Russian and Chinese political, scientific, and space engineering leaders understand the critical commercial and Space Dominance importance of super propellant efficient (and thus super high Isp) solar and nuclear powered electric propulsion systems with a 2,600 Isp to 14,000+ Isp.

Russian and Chinese Cold War II leaders also understand the significantly increased Star War II weapon load and much higher delta-v performance advantages enabled by propellant efficient 900+ Isp nuclear thermal rocket powered spacecraft.

Russian and Chinese Cold War II Space Dominance leaders also clearly understand the many real benefits of their cooperating on space missions.

“As part of the Vostochny project, authorities in Moscow have been pouring resources into Amur State University to create a new space faculty that is already beginning to push students through training programs and work apprenticeships to develop Russia’s next-generation cosmodrome cadres.”

And, “Across the space faculty and university at large, signs are written in Russian and in Chinese. Exchange students from across the river flock here in droves, and students participate in countless scientific and engineering projects with Chinese students. It is a very clear reflection of growing talk among Russian leadership that the country’s future in space does not lay in cooperation with NASA and the West, but with the ascendant Chinese space program.”

From “The long road to Vostochny: Inside Russia’s newest launch facility”
By Matthew Bodner — January 30, 2019
At: https://spacenews.com/the-long-road-to-vostochny-inside-russias-newest-launch-facility/

James Lunar Miner

“The Kessler syndrome (also called the Kessler effect,[1][2] collisional cascading or ablation cascade), proposed by the NASA scientist Donald J. Kessler in 1978, is a scenario in which the density of objects in low Earth orbit (LEO) is high enough that collisions between objects could cause a cascade where each collision generates space debris that increases the likelihood of further collisions.[3]”

And, “One implication is that the distribution of debris in orbit could render space activities and the use of satellites in specific orbital ranges impractical for many generations.[3]”

From: “Kessler syndrome” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kessler_syndrome

The Kessler syndrome risks in Low Earth Orbit will be dramatically increased by the inherent multiple refueling/docking events and large and risky amounts of super chilled methane and oxygen propellant transfers required for the grossly propellant inefficient and low 380 Isp BFR/Starship to do missions beyond Low Earth Orbit.

Mr. Elon Musk’s enormous SpaceX profits and dangerous off the wall Potemkin Mars colonies soon goals are apparently far more important to him than protecting our Home Planet from the Kessler syndrome risks inherent in his grossly propellant inefficient, huge, and risky BFR/Starship trying to do beyond Low Earth Orbit missions.

Kessler effect…

Oh yeah, just like that science fiction movie – Gravity. Sounds like dangerous stuff, but it’s just fantasy.

Don’t worry James, the sky isn’t falling.

James Lunar Miner

“Don’t worry James, the sky isn’t falling.” – JBURN

It is not a question of the sky is falling or the sky isn’t falling, but it is a question of what can be done to prevent objects of different types from falling hard and killing lots of folks below.

And in such a situation of a large and incoming NEO, the slow and low delta-v fossil fuel fueled BFR/Starship would be pretty much useless when compared to the much superior interception capabilities of a much higher delta-v capable nuclear powered spaceship.

There aren’t many fans of the slow and delta-v limited and obsolete BFR/Starship in Russia and China. Those smart and pragmatic folks want and will soon acquire the useful high delta-v capabilities and inherent space dominance and effective NEO interception capabilities that are found with fast, propellant efficient, and high delta-v nuclear-powered spaceships.

Why? They live in the real world of:

“The Chelyabinsk meteor was a superbolide caused by an approximately 20 m (66 ft) near-Earth asteroid that entered Earth’s atmosphere over Russia on 15 February 2013 at about 09:20 YEKT (03:20 UTC), with a speed of 19.16 ± 0.15 kilometres per second (60,000[5]–69,000 km/h or 40,000[5]–42,900 mph).[6][7] It quickly became a brilliant superbolide meteor over the southern Ural region. The light from the meteor was brighter than the Sun, visible up to 100 km (62 mi) away.”

And, “Its explosion created panic among local residents, and about 1,500 people were injured seriously enough to seek medical treatment.”

And, “With an estimated initial mass of about 12,000–13,000 metric tons[7][8][10] (13,000–14,000 short tons, heavier than the Eiffel Tower), and measuring about 20 m (66 ft) in diameter, it is the largest known natural object to have entered Earth’s atmosphere since the 1908 Tunguska event, which destroyed a wide, remote, forested, and very sparsely populated area of Siberia.”

And, “According to a paper in 2013, all these ~500 kiloton yield estimates for the meteor airburst are ‘uncertain by a factor of two because of a lack of calibration data at those high energies and altitudes.'”

From: “Chelyabinsk meteor” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chelyabinsk_meteor

James Lunar Miner

The pragmatic and historically attuned Chinese folks have some politically highly motivating experience with nasty incoming space objects.

Since Chinese folks live in the real world, they want, need, and will build fast, cost-effective, propellant efficient, and high delta-v capable nuclear-powered spaceships that can quickly implement both Space Dominance and Near Earth Object interception missions:

Note:

“The Ch’ing-yang event of 1490 (also Ch’ing-yang, Chi-ing-yang or Chíing-yang meteor shower) is a presumed meteor shower or air burst in Qìngyáng (Ch’ing-Yang, simplified Chinese: 庆阳; traditional Chinese: 慶陽) in March or April 1490.[1][2] The area was in the district of Shaanxi (陕西, now part of Gansu 甘肃 Province).”

And, “At least one report of the event is found in the official History of the Ming Dynasty, and other journal records which describe the event are also generally considered reliable.”

And, “However Kevin Yau et al. of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory did note several similarities of the Ch’ing-yang meteor fall to the Tunguska event, which would have destroyed a highly populous district.[1][6]”

And, “Stones fell like rain in the Ch’ing-yang district. The larger ones were 4 to 5 catties (斤, about 1.5 kg), and the smaller ones were 2 to 3 catties (about 1 kg). Numerous stones rained in Ch’ing-yang. Their sizes were all different. The larger ones were like goose’s eggs and the smaller ones were like water-chestnuts. More than 10,000 people were struck dead. All of the people in the city fled to other places.

From: “1490 Ch’ing-yang event” Wikipedia
At: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1490_Ch%27ing-yang_event

James Lunar Miner

What has been actually funded? – Neil

In America, we are making some progress with funding nuclear thermal rocket engines that can be used to power fast and high delta-v capable spaceships that will quickly make the slow, fossil fueled, and limited delta-v Raptor powered stainless steel Starship technologically obsolete:

“Of that total, $180 million will go to Restore-L, a satellite servicing mission also previously threatened with cancellation, and $100 million to nuclear thermal propulsion research, including planning for a flight demonstration mission by 2024.”

From: Final fiscal year 2019 budget bill secures $21.5 billion for NASA
By Jeff Foust 2/17/2019
At: https://spacenews.com/final-fiscal-year-2019-budget-bill-secures-21-5-billion-for-nasa/

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