Chinese Shenzhou V Spacecraft

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by Rocketmaniac, Oct 3, 2003.

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  1. Oct 3, 2003 #1

    Rocketmaniac

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    I read today (thursday) in the USA Today that the Chinese are trying to become one the third country to launch a manned spacecraft..... The article quoted an unnamed "insider as saying the mission could be launched by the end of the month......

    I want to do some more research on this...... I would like to find a few websites that will give more details....... Some very interesting news for the rocket/space world......
     
  2. Oct 3, 2003 #2

    sandman

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  3. Oct 3, 2003 #3

    Chilly

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  4. Oct 3, 2003 #4

    powderburner

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    Also go to your local library and see if they have a subscription to 'Aviation Week & Space Technology' magazine. They have been running stories (over the past year or two) about progress on the Chinese program. And yes, apparently a manned launch is expected very soon.
    Email me your address and I will look for some back issues to send you.
     
  5. Oct 3, 2003 #5

    Rocketmaniac

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  6. Oct 3, 2003 #6

    Rocketmaniac

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  7. Oct 3, 2003 #7

    Rocketmaniac

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  8. Oct 15, 2003 #8

    Rocketmaniac

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    Well, China has launched a manned spacecraft!!!!!. The report I read is that it was launched at 9:00pm EDT and was in orbit 10 minutes later..... No reports of any problems (but china is not known for telling everything). 14 orbits or about 20 hours is the expected duration of the flight........

    I wonder if you will see some video of the launch?????
     
  9. Oct 15, 2003 #9

    vjp

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    The manned version is the Long March 2F, you can easily i.d.
    it by the launch escape system at the top of the rocket, almost
    identical to the Soyuz's.

    Here's a ZIP of the images I've collected off the web, these are
    all from the first 4 unmanned 4F test flights obviously.

    http://members.verizon.net/vpearman/SHENZHOU.zip
     
  10. Oct 15, 2003 #10

    trogdor

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    I just saw video on CNN of the launch and it was very impressive. It's exciting in many ways, particularly if the Chinese continue to follow through with their plans to get to the moon and set up a colony by 2020. Could be another space race which would only help non-military aerospace, our hobby and its growth and through new technology, everyone.

    It's hard to put aside all the political aspects but I am excited overall. Maybe we needed this to keep us on our technological toes...
     
  11. Oct 15, 2003 #11

    Rocketmaniac

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    I had not heard about their wanting to go to the moon...... Yes, this should re-start the space race again....... And that should only help things for us...... Very exciting indeed............
     
  12. Oct 15, 2003 #12

    Johnnie

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    Wow, what a clean burn hose motors were putting out. Very nice shot...

    Johnnie Paul
     
  13. Oct 15, 2003 #13

    illini

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    James Oberg has interesting comments on this: http://www.usatoday.com/news/opinion/editorials/2003-10-14-oberg_x.htm

    I wouldn't hold my breath about this stimulating any new activity on our front. This just plain isn't 1961 and our great politicians aren't about to start throwing billions at NASA to beat the Chinese back to the moon. NASA is a political entity, not technical, and space is a diplomatic weapon, not military. NASA will do only what it is told to do to achieve political/diplomatic goals. Sorry to sound pessimistic, but don't expect any miracles here.
     
  14. Oct 16, 2003 #14

    Rocketjunkie

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    If there's hints the Chinese may claim territory a reaction is far more likely.
     
  15. Oct 16, 2003 #15

    powderburner

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    You call all those tons of red smoke (by-products of burning red fuming nitric acid as part of the propellants?) CLEAN?
     
  16. Oct 16, 2003 #16

    marvSRG

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    I don't think he meant clean as in "environmentally safe". I think he meant that the motors appeared to have a very clean, or smooth, burn. Mmm...those clear mach diamond filled flames kinda remind me of those Mr. Clean motors Alan Adamson, John Clifton, and others have done at O-berg.
     
  17. Oct 16, 2003 #17

    illini

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    Claiming territory isn't likely for two reasons: 1) The Chinese are trying to gain respect...claiming territory wouldn't be likely to do that. 2) Claiming territory is meaningless unless you are prepared to defend that territory.

    What the Chinese do in space will have very little impact on what we do in space (which is nothing except for the unmanned program). It is a question of national will and objectives. The Chinese have the will and clearly defined goals right now. We have *no* will and *no* goals. Our problems in space run very deep. Much deeper than the CAIB report and Sean O'Keefe parroting his "we get the message" line every time someone sticks a microphone in front of his face.
     
  18. Oct 16, 2003 #18

    Chilly

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    There's a lot of interesting commentary going on about this at the space blogs (Rand Simberg, Laughing Wolf, Space Review, etc). The general consensus is NASA needs to return their focus to research, development, and exploration. Basically, it's the proper role of government: fund the things that private enterprise can't justify. Then help them find things that are worth going after (finding Helium3 on the moon is a frequent example).

    It's high time we left Low-Earth Orbit access to private companies. The technology has been a non-issue for decades - the questions now are how cheap can we make it and what's the market? The great thing is a lot of young internet bazillionaires who grew up reading SF and watching Star Trek now have the money to build their own spaceships - and they're doing it (Blue Origin, XCOR, SpaceX, SpaceShip One)! Hopefully the gov't will just get the heck out of the way and we'll see some amazing things over the next few years. I work in commercial aviation and would dearly love the chance to ply my trade on a hypersonic suborbital airliner before I retire.:D
     
  19. Oct 16, 2003 #19

    illini

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    Chilly,

    I personally agree with everything you're saying. NASA's unmanned exploration provides incredible return on the investment. Look at WMAP, Galileo, the Mars Rovers...the list is long. NASA's work in low earth orbit has zero scientific or technical value. Does anyone really care about what honey bees do in microgravity? Thank God for the ISS...now we can watch what honey bees do in microgravity for months at a time!

    NASA's appropriate role is R&D and exploration...exactly as you said. In the R&D category: NASA should be researching new technology and new concepts for transition to the commercial sector and for application to exploration missions. On the exploration front, NASA should continue and expand its unmanned agenda, sending humans into space only when there is a clear reason to do so (e.g., go to mars). Otherwise, leave the LEO human spaceflight to the commercial sector and help them out with R&D (my money is on Burt Rutan with SpaceShip One).
     
  20. Oct 16, 2003 #20

    PGerringer

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    In a perfect world, the USs attention to terrorist threats would shift to focus on a space race. Personally I'm getting tired of the "terrorist threat" being thrust in my face and would welcome the change in focus. I neither feel threatened nor do I feel any safer than before 911. But, since apparently many folks in the government are making money from the homeland security and get their rocks off by inforcing.....

    Wait, I'm getting off topic. When I first saw the article I thought, "So what, been there done that." And unfortunately I think that is gonna be the opinion of most people. Course, if they start making stellar progress and are close to the 2020 colony, I would expect those in Washington to take notice. I for one would love to live on a space colony. Let's see... My study would be: "How a short fat balding man can survive in space while lazing around eating Cheetoes and using his personal methane gas ejector as a boosting device." :)

    Wonder if the Chinese will be allowed access to the international space station. Probably not if I'm one of their passengers, huh? :)
     
  21. Oct 16, 2003 #21

    illini

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    I don't disagree with you, but the world is clearly not perfect. Obviously, space is not a priority. For better or for worse, that is the way things are done in Washington: turn the firehose of funding on the current problem. When that goes away, turn the firehose on the next problem. In the '60's, winning the space race was a funding priority for the sake of national prestige and striking a blow in the cold war. Science and technology had nothing, repeat NOTHING to do with it. Once the battle was won, the firehose turned elsewhere.

    A clear problem with our politicians (not our political system, but our POLITICIANS) is that they have no ability to focus on the long term. A long term investment in space would be a good idea. So would long term investments in alternative energy resources (so that we can decrease our involvement in the middle east if nothing else). Instead, space has been ignored for 30 years and our solution to energy problems is to *drill for more oil*. This is not meant to be an indictment of any particular political party...they're all equally bad at that "vision thing."

    Given the lack of vision of the band of lawyers we've promoted to be our national leaders, we are left with how to make the most of what we have. NASA doesn't have enough funding to safely fly both the shuttle and ISS, and neither of these are worth anything anyway. Further, NASA doesn't have the workforce it needs to do complex things anymore. A better path would be to tear down NASA's manned space flight program, use the money for R&D, and transition successes to industry for commercial development.
     
  22. Oct 16, 2003 #22

    PGerringer

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    I always thought the value of the ISS was as a jumping off point. An orbiter would launch into space, stop at ISS for a cheeseburger, fuel and to convert to a space cruiser. Then the real exploring begins. Oh, the dreams we have. :)
     
  23. Oct 16, 2003 #23

    illini

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    Anyone interested in a good primer on the political issues regarding the future of manned space flight should read this: http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewsr.html?pid=10658. What's interesting is that this is the agenda of a hearing going on in the House Science Committee right now...at this very moment. You see, Congress isn't ignoring the issues. On the contrary, they make for a nice photo op and opportunity for a sound bite for the folks back home! (Not that I'm cynical or anything...) I guess the good news is that the right questions are being asked. Whether they lead to the right answers is to be determined.
     
  24. Oct 16, 2003 #24

    airforce

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    I think everything that China does in this arena is military based.
    I feel it's nothing more then a step towards ballistic missles and the control of them.:kill:
     
  25. Oct 16, 2003 #25

    rstaff3

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    Or other space-based weapons.
     
  26. Oct 16, 2003 #26

    illini

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    You don't need to send a man into space to deploy military payloads. Yes, China's program is part of their military, but I think that more than anything they want the world to respect them as a superpower.
     
  27. Oct 16, 2003 #27

    PGerringer

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    I know it is tough for a leopard to change its spots, but I think with these times, this venture may be on the level. It seems that all the thoughts of war (in everywhere except for the middle east) has changed significantly in the past decade. Seems like noone has any money for a drawn out arms race. I think the idea that China wants to win favor from its citizens is authentic.
     
  28. Oct 16, 2003 #28

    astronboy

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    Actually, the only thing that could really jump-start the US Space program again is if it can be proven that he Chinese space goals are military.... we would be forced to keep up. I am hoping that the Chinese try a to build a Moon station. Then we would have to build one as well.

    Let's face it, the only reason we went to the Moon in the first place is to beat the Soviets.
     
  29. Oct 16, 2003 #29

    Chilly

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    Actually, it's no good for that either!
    That's the dirty little secret of ISS: it's orbit is at such a high inclination (angle relative to the equator) that it's counterproductive. That's a result of getting the Russkies involved and having the station core launched from their territory. The launch site is so far north, they couldn't put up anything of the required size into a more useful equatorial orbit. Space Station Albatross is an absolute mess and enormous waste of NASA resources. The only good I can see from it is learning construction techniques and effects of long-term spaceflight.
     
  30. Oct 16, 2003 #30

    illini

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    I'm sure that China has military objectives in space, but what does a manned presence have to do with it?

    If China builds a moon base, how does that further military goals?

    If they build a moon base, why would we have to build one?

    Yes, we went to the moon to beat the Soviets. But that was to strike a political blow, not a military one. In no way did our landing on the moon diminish the Soviet Union's military capabilities. Similarly, if China builds a moon base how does that constitute a military threat that requires us to achieve parity?

    A manned military space program makes no sense because an unmanned military presence is so much cheaper, more effective, and doesn't complain as much.
     

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