1. Graham2001

    Graham2001 Active Member

    I first spotted this article (Is There Any Hope for a Moon Base? by Phil Kouts) in the August-September 2014 issue of Nexus Magazine (Vol. 21 No. 5) and have subsequently been pointed to the online version.

    The authors claim as written in the 'blurb' to the article is as follows:

    His analysis, after listing many 'issues' raised in the Constellation documents concludes, as might be expected:

    All of this is based off freely available NASA documentation, the authors bio as given at the end of the article is particularly telling:

    The full document can be read at:

  2. WeedWhacker

    WeedWhacker Senior Member

    Just at a "first blush" (after MANY years of 'arguing' with Apollo "deniers"? I have "tagged" this thread for further reading, when I have the time. However, my years of researching Apollo puts me (I think) in good stead.
  3. MikeC

    MikeC Closed Account

    At a first glance the guy's reasoning is just wrong. He takes the tighter approval criteria that would be used today and then basically asks why NASA can't "just use the old technology" - hey it ran for 8 years 40 years ago - what's the problem with using it now?

    He completely ignores that advances in computer simulation (for example) might show up flaws that were not realised back then, or that certification criteria is tougher, safety margins are tighter, and much more testing is done.

    It is just an argument from incredulity - there's nothing of substance.
    • Agree Agree x 3
  4. WeedWhacker

    WeedWhacker Senior Member

    Well yes. That "is" (it seems) the entire aspect of these "Apollo deniers".

    Of course, the LROC has sufficiently dispelled ALL of the 'deniers' claims, at this point (and, since 2009)....though NONE of the "claims" has any merit in the first place!!

    LROC images:
    https://www.google.com/search?q=lroc images&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=RhZ0VJmeNKbriQK624HIBg&ved=0CAgQ_AUoAQ&biw=1600&bih=799#tbm=isch&q=lroc apollo images

    "IF" (?) I may be permitted to show a video that is, in my opinion, one of the best? It was compiled by a researcher/astronomer at Arizona State Unversity. He (originally using the clever "YouTube" moniker of "GoneToPlaid"....bonus points if anyone recognizes the reference)....eventually got "Fed up" by all of the "NEGATIVE" comments, and closed his "YT" Channel.

    But, someone else "mirrored" his excellent work....here it is, for everyone's continued enjoyment (PLEASE consider "sharing"!! "GoneToPlaid" works at the ASU or, Arizona State University. This work that he originally posted is the 'epitome' of perfection, in MHO!!!):


    (ETA): There are many 'acronyms'....as i watch this again, I am reminded of this fact.

    "PLSS" is "Personal LIfe Support System"...(these were the "back-packs" attached to the Apollo EVA space-suits. You see these in the EVA videos, and photos. These "PLSS" packs were NOT needed, except for EVA activities....they were NOT worn inside the spacecraft, except for egress and ingress, prior and post-EVA, ON the Lunar surface. AND only on-board the LM.

    I think there is a LOT not understood, about the specifics and the technology involved, IN the Lunar Space Program, which lead to many commonplace misconceptions. Of course, a proper "bit" of research will resolve these "perceived" 'disparities').

    (ALSO ETA? THE "PLSS" are present, still, on the Lunar surface because they were "unneeded mass"....after being used, they were disposed of....and this after the Astronauts were back "inside", and had hose connections for life support FROM the spacecraft itself. The EVA PLSS units were NOT needed, at this point...and "tossed" to dispose of the mass....as was anything else that was not needed, and was extra "mass" prior to the lift-off of the LM Upper Stage.....).

    (2nd ETA? Further reading .... which could take months, to properly "absorb"??):

    (AND THAT? ^^^ Is just for Apollo 11!!! There is a tremendous amount more....SO much that well....could it "all" have been "made up"? With NO errors??? I ask....).....
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2014
  5. NoParty

    NoParty Senior Member

    A) I'll often begin by looking for reaction by professionals in the relevant field:
    If months have passed--after supposedly ground-shaking new evidence was revealed--and no one gives a damn...
    that's a sign that there's likely no "there" there.

    B) Next, there's an empty appeal to authority: We should take this paper to be serious academia, because a worldly
    Physics PhD wrote it...except that no...we have no idea. Possibly my Aunt Lucy. Or an 8th grader. Just purely random.

    C) I also agree with Mike that--if I'm still reading after A) & B) failed, whoever did write this just reasons poorly.

    D) As far as "Weedwhacker" goes...oh, never mind...forget I said anything... :p

    So, for an old guy like me...who no longer risks buying green bananas...investing any additional time
    in a detailed deconstruction of an anonymous, ignored article will not be a priority.

    btw: I hadn't seen the http://www.donotlink.com links before, but your posts led me to check them out...
    could be quite useful to debunkers who don't want to raise search status of crappy sites. Thanks! :)
    • Like Like x 2
  6. WeedWhacker

    WeedWhacker Senior Member

    Ah.....the actual FOCUS! Perfect.

    BACK to "topic? no, there are No actual verifiable NASA "documents" that "doubt" the "reality" of Apollo!!!

    To the contrary?? I can contribute MORE to my earlier post above....this will be documentation that supports Apollo 12, the follow-on mission:

    Apollo 12.

    I will invite ANYONE to examine this data, and find ANY inconsistencies!!!

    I will finish with (apologies to the Mods) a video from YouTube that just cements the reality of Apollo....and NO ONE can refute it, with any actual "argument" that has any merit:

  7. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Moderator Staff Member

    I haven't been through the link in the OP in great detail, but saying "why don't you just recreate the Apollo hardware?" is ridiculous. It used techniques that are no longer used, anywhere, and it would need to be totally redesigned anyway, because there is no overarching set of blueprints we can go back to.

    And we know a lot more about radiation nowadays, and employees are rather less cavalier with their attitude to worker safety than they were 50 years ago.

    Aulis is full of discredited moon hoax stuff, so I wouldn't take this (or the author's alleged credentials) very seriously.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Hevach

    Hevach Senior Member

    Even if we were to use the obsolete techniques and rebuild them by hand, we couldn't do much better than a museum model of the LM and CSM. The factory to build Saturn rockets is long gone, and the facilities being prepared to build the Delta Heavy deal in a different rocket diameter. You can't just slap this stuff together wherever.

    This stuff doesn't snap together like Lego, it's an entire chain of specialized production. It would be cheaper to build a new system using the Delta Heavy and Orion capsule than to recreate an Apollo system for show.

    We weren't entirely cavalier with the astronauts' safety, but the political pressure meant it couldn't be at the forefront. For political reasons, NASA spent a decade throwing safety and science under the bus in favor of footprints and flags, and then their manned program imploded when the political value was spent. And to add insult to injury, the USSR was playing a different game, and won theirs more effectively than we won ours, as they laid the groundwork for every modern space program, and have kept a unified space program running through NASA's multiple boom and bust cycles.

    As much as many people at NASA want to send people to Mars, they don't want it to be a political race against China or Russia or anybody. That was the whole point of the ISS, and why so many space programs share facilities and expertise on unmanned missions. It's why there's been interest in getting China involved in the ISS. Because honestly, they know full well that if we pull another space race, we'll get there with an incomplete system, do half the science another Curiosity could have done, and then political interest will die because we were only there to be first, and the program will die with it. Meanwhile China will probably not even try, and instead establish the groundwork for a century of orbital industrial application.

    That's why NASA now is talking about such a long timetable for moon missions, let alone Mars. They want a long term sustainable program, with science before grandstanding, and why they seek out so much outside involvement from other space programs, academics, and the private sector. The best way for sustainable long term space exploration is a shared global program free from space race mentality.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2014
    • Agree Agree x 3
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    • Funny Funny x 1
  9. jaydeehess

    jaydeehess Senior Member

    I have a copy of "Dark Moon". I highly recommend it for its unintended humour. It includes good old Una's coke bottle on the moon.
  10. jaydeehess

    jaydeehess Senior Member

    This is perhaps the most mirthful part of the whole exercise. Aulis has a physicist expert, "no really we do, honest. He just chooses to be an expert for Aulis but does not wish to demonstrate his authority on the subject. You all believe it, right?"
    David Percy is either very gullible or deliberately ignorant.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. jaydeehess

    jaydeehess Senior Member

    The article has barely a paragraph that cannot immediately be refuted by an intelligent tenth grader. (ETA for WW: such refutation occurs at ridiculous speed)
    Heat shield: the problem is even made clear, then ignored by, the author. Its the size of the new re-entry vehicle compared to that of the original Apollo CM re-entry module.
    Seems to me all of this could be avoided if a returning mission just docks with the ISS or its successor or just put the returning craft into a LEO , and the crew comes down in whatever vehicle the ISS project uses by that time
    This removes the trajectory issue as well.

    If a completely new re-entry vehicle is required, say for a complete 12 man crew change, isn't it obvious that the same ablative material used for a three man crew return may not suffice? After all F=ma

    As for radiation: we are talking about months or years in space as opposed to days or weeks. More precise data might be quite prudent to determine.

    The author seems to conflate the short term requirements for Apollo with the long term requirements for a Lunar base, in many of the points he brings up. Odd that a physicist would seem to have little grasp of the concept, and effect of, time.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2014
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  12. Hevach

    Hevach Senior Member

    Using the ISS as a stop-over on the return trip is a problem of delta-V. It's possible to do a direct transfer from lunar orbit to a reentry vector in a single burn, which is what Apollo did. However, to stop at the ISS, they'd need to perform a shorter burn to escape from lunar orbit, but then a second at perigee to circularize to LEO. Ideally that burn would also be the rendezvous burn for the ISS, leaving only the reentry burn after stopover, but potentially two or three more burns could be required to complete the rendezvous. Either way, multiple burns, basically acting against one another, adds up to more fuel to burn.

    More delta-V means more fuel, likely weighing more than just bringing the heat shield all the way there and back.

    A space station as a stopover is usually speculated for the outbound trip or interplanetary missions. For outbound trips, you're starting from LEO either way, and the station allows the mission to be launched in segments with smaller, more efficient rockets, then docked together for lunar transfer. For interplanetary missions, a direct burn from Mars to reentry means you'll be hitting the atmosphere several times faster than any heat shield will be able to help you and vaporizing your spacecraft, so a burn for earth orbit is needed regardless.

    I could, however, see an ISS successor being set up as the main lab for samples being brought back, since it offers the opportunity to examine and experiment on them in microgravity rather than on the surface. That could justify the extra weight.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2014
  13. Chew

    Chew Senior Member

    To enter the same orbit as the ISS on a return trip from the Moon you'd need to slow down by 3080 m/s. That requires a mass ratio of ~2.9, i.e. you'd need to carry 2.9 times as much fuel to escape from Earth orbit, 2.9 times as much fuel to enter lunar orbit, and 2.9 times as much fuel to escape lunar orbit.
  14. Chew

    Chew Senior Member

    Reentry from the Moon was also too much for the Apollo heat shield but they came up with a workaround. Long but educationally-intensive:

    • Informative Informative x 1
  15. jaydeehess

    jaydeehess Senior Member

    So what everyone is saying is that it IS rocket science.

    Ok. I understand the delta V issue.

    Am I correct in my assumption that greater mass will also increase the nastiness of conditions a heat shield will have to contend with?
  16. Chew

    Chew Senior Member

    Just the opposite. The crew capsule would stay the same but the reentry speed would be a lot less so it would require a less thick heat shield.
  17. Hevach

    Hevach Senior Member

    We also have better materials than we did for Apollo, so I'm not sure we'd be using an ablative heat shield. You also need less if you're not burning it away during reentry.

    Big take away here is that the reason rocket science is rocket science isn't that it's complicated (It is, very, but at a conceptual level without the math it's pretty simple really), but that every bit of it just seems like nonsense. Want to go up? Burn sideways. Want to slow down? Speed up. Want to speed up? Slow down. Nothing works like ground logic says it should.
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  18. jaydeehess

    jaydeehess Senior Member

    Here's how I was viewing it; please point out where I go off the rails:
    Force due to gravity is F=Mg, so if the capsule is heavier due to a larger crew this force is greater than for Apollo's three man crew.
    Opposing force due to friction is proportional to the square of velocity but is insensitive to mass.
    With force due to gravity increased, terminal velocity will be greater and thus so will friction which creates the heat.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  19. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    I'd prefer it if people do not use donotlink, as it is unnecessary (all links are nofollow anyway), it hides the site address, so it's hard to investigate other pages on the same site, and it introduces a single point of failure, where a lot of links might go down if donotlink goes down.
  20. NoParty

    NoParty Senior Member

    Well...I still kinda feel like George Bush using "the internets" and "the Google" for the first time,
    so I cheerfully defer to your more informed position. Will not use here. Thanks. :)
  21. Chew

    Chew Senior Member

    Two capsules of different masses will accelerate towards Earth at the same rate but after entering the atmosphere the heavier capsule will decelerate slower. The capsule with more mass will decelerate slower and experience a higher and longer heat load.

    My explanation was based on a capsule reentering from low Earth orbit (8 km/s) vice reentering at near escape velocity (11 km/s). Needing more fuel won't change the mass of the returning crew capsule. I don't know when extra crewmembers were introduced into this problem.
  22. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    I'm not sure what the root issue is here. But on this point, if a capsule decelerates slower, then it's going to get to earth quicker. So the heat load will be shorter. However the total energy that needs to be scrubbed off is greater.
  23. jaydeehess

    jaydeehess Senior Member

    That how I see it. Friction is proportional to square of velocity so therefore so is heat generation. Heat load time would bring in dissipation which is proportional to time linearly.

    Simple comparison perhaps: rub your hand on your opposite forearm slowly for twenty seconds, note any heat build up.
    Now do the same but rub as fast as you can for ten seconds, note heat build up.
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  24. Chew

    Chew Senior Member

    But the heat generation is proportional to the cube of the velocity. A heavier ballistic capsule lower in the atmosphere will have the same speed and deceleration as a lighter capsule higher in the atmosphere.

    An aside, modern capsules are designed to provide lift; they can control their altitude to a great extent. Their flight profile keeps them at higher altitudes to control deceleration and heat generation.
  25. jaydeehess

    jaydeehess Senior Member

    The cube of velocity, for air friction?

  26. WeedWhacker

    WeedWhacker Senior Member

    From my Twit...Twitter feed, something from NASA that will send the Moon "hoax" advocates into paroxysms of ecstasy:

    NASA's Van Allen Probes Spot an Impenetrable Barrier in Space

    Of course, they will merely "scan" the article, see "Van Allen Belts" and "impenetrable" and then go no further!!

    The article is about HOW the Van Allen Belts protect our planet, not that they are "impenetrable" by Humans.

    The actual facts of science never matter to the true hard-core Moon "hoax" believer....
  27. Graham2001

    Graham2001 Active Member

    Actually the Universe Today version of this press release by Matt Williams is even better for quote mining by Moon Hoax believers:

    • Like Like x 1