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Comment Re:But asbestos is fine! (Score 1) 168

There are actually two major types of asbestos - one that is very dangerous when particles enter the lungs, the other is much much less so. The first type is mined mainly in FSR, while the second type is the kind produced in Quebec. The whole asbestos thing was WAY overblown by the public and media who jump and shout "OMG ASBESTOS !!@~ " and sensationalize it ... like almost everything else they touch.

Comment Re:Misleading: nuclear is excluded (Score 3, Informative) 79

using nuclear as a electricity source for larger propulsion systems (ie, higher than the small ion drives currently using RTG) would be a huge step up. whenever they launch VASIMR to the station, it will only be able to fire for short bursts, because the huge solar arrays on the station cannot power it continuously. If a similar system used nuclear electricity to drive it, it could fire continuously and be a viable propulsion system.

on the other hand, using "micro pellet inertial confinement compression-induced fission" would probably produce spectabulous Isp, but it would need years (decades? this is government after all..) of research before an actual construction proposal would arise. Far too distant to be a major selling point of any budget proposal.

Comment Re:"No Moon" (Score 4, Insightful) 455

Had space travel been in a coma, you'd have a point. But it hasn't. Instead we've actually had what all the space fans claim to have wanted for years - a routine workaday program.

You are calling 4 manned trips a year to LEO a "workaday" program? Where it takes 12 years to get a space station completed? The shuttle directly limited spaceflight development by being dangerous, expensive and overly complex - leading to the 4 trip per year limit. Keeping up our presence in LEO going is important, absolutely, but spending 1 billion per launch to do so is not.

Obama's program is something of a bust - a modest amount of money, a booster with no mission (I smell pork), and a capsule that might be adapted to have a mission at some date in the misty future. No clear goals, no timetables, no roadmaps nothing but warm fuzzy rhetoric.

Commercial companies are developing the tech for manned LEO, so we really shouldn't be designing our own. To do better missions further out, we need a heavy lifter - exactly what Obama is proposing. By requiring the design to be finalized by 2015, it gives a deadline so that it is not just "pork barrel funding" - but still enough time to include some new tech like on orbit refueling (could greatly expand our working distance from earth). It has timeframes, goals, and roadmaps - it just isn't based on old, already-used tech, so he can't say exactly what the booster will be like. I think it is significantly better than the Constellation program - less expensive, same goals, better tech, more likely to actually happen.

Comment Re:Not that bright, are you? (Score 1) 199

Personally, of all the cell carriers, I hate rogers the /most/. Actually, Koodo (subsidiary of telus) has much better prices than other companies, and there is no penalty to drop your contract. (you have to pay your phone off, but that is never more than $150 - that is how much they allow on their "tab"). I have no idea how their smart phone selection is, but they are fine for voice and text, and very cheap.

Comment Re:28 hour day (Score 1) 287

that is the same as with any abrupt sleep pattern change - try having the old stay-up-to-4 sleep schedule and immediately switching to a midnight-to-8 system (as referenced in http://xkcd.com/361/ ). Getting up at 8 after 4 hours sleep will suck, and you wont be able to fall asleep until 2 or 3. It takes a week or two to switch, so switching to a 6-day schedule should take, i'd guess, somewhere on the order of a month

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