NASA's Missions after Apollo (Spirit - part 2)


They are "three sizes too small"

Rolf A. F. Witzsche

International space station

NASA is still leading the field
but the field is too small by 3 orders of magnitude (1000-fold)


The standard needs to be set higher

Allow me to present an example in principle:

When Admiral Hyman George Rickover (the longest-serving naval officer in U.S. history with 63 years of active duty) was looking for a higher-order power plant for the nation's submarine fleet in the late 1940s, he had no option but to create from scratch a new science platform, a new education platform, and a new industry, all for this single purpose of achieving his higher-order goal. And he succeed. His achievement revolutionized marine propulsion, and it became the seed-kernel for what is now the world's civilian nuclear power program. (More than 150 naval vessels using nuclear propulsion have been built, and on the civilian side, in 2009, 15% of the world's electricity came from nuclear power, despite reservations, protests, and sabotage.)

 - -

It is being said that Admiral Rickover had the text of an ancient scripture hanging above his desk in those days of great movements in scientific and technological development:

 "Where there is no vision, the people perish." 

Evidently the Admiral's vision has never been dim, but has brought a dynamism to a wide field of development that he knew would be needed for his appointed task to succeed. And how shall we measure the gain achieved for mankind?

Sure, we (mankind) went to the moon. We 'owned' the moon for three years. We stood stall as an example of what can be achieved, when we stood on the moon, and then became small again. We became as small as the "Grinch that stole Christmas." Maybe we should learn from the Grinch whose heart grew 3 sizes one day, with which he stood taller than ever before. And this means 3 orders of magnitude, which adds up to a thousand-fold growth for our heart. Shouldn't we try to mach that? The standard of the Universe is a 100,000 fold gain. When an atom is born its size is 100,000 larger than the sum of its parts. Surely, we are qualified to match that.

What would this imply
for standing tall again?

We have leaned in the science of electronics that the impedance throughout a dynamic system must match at every stage, from the power source to the power sink. This reflects a universal principle that we cannot bypass. This principle also defines the dynamics of our next moon mission. The scope of the mission itself is also defined by another universal principle, that of natural growth.

Considering the principle of natural growth, there is no point in going back to the moon to repeat what has already been accomplished. The next mission, in order to be meaningful, must have to be a higher-order mission. Such a mission needs to built on what has been accomplished. It cannot simply be a repeat of it, but must move forward from it towards a higher-order achievement such as, for example, setting up a science city on the moon, with a supporting industrial base, which together enable mankind to utilize the unique environment the moon offers, including it serving as a low gravity jumping-off base towards more distant targets, such as mars. 

If the above example would be the chosen higher-order mission for our next step in space exploration, it would enable us to stand tall again with a higher achievement that we are capable of as human beings. Of course this higher-order mission would not be possible without upgrading the entire underlying system to the same higher-order dynamics, from the very grassroots level up, of human living. In the 1960s this dynamic impedance-matching was achieved throughout the entire system. Everything was brought up to a matching level. The economic power was brought up to level; the industrial power largely existed; the social power, scientific power, and also political power, were quickly created or upgraded.  Everything that was needed to match the scope of the Apollo mission was brought into existence. It was done with relative ease, because the foundation already existed in American culture. Unfortunately, much of that doesn't exist anymore, nor would it be sufficient if did exist.

A higher-order mission would require a complete upgrade of the entire dynamic system that we call civilization, to match the higher-order dynamics of the new mission. This upgrading would have to start with housing. With housing begins the platform for civilization. Quality housing enables intellectual, cultural, and social advances. The current waste in this arena prevents the development of the human power to the required level, on which mankind's future now depends. A higher-order housing platform, for example, would one where high-quality housing is produced in automated industrial processes with such efficiency, that the housing can be given away for free as a investment of mankind into itself towards upgrading the human power-base. This startup capability would also prevent the wasteful commuting practice that is so prevalent today. The upgrading of the human power-base would also have to include free education and free universal healthcare, which would have to be based on the same kind of efficient platform where financial factors play a subservient role. Of course, doing all this, would require the same higher-order dynamics in energy production, both nuclear and beyond nuclear, and likewise in food production in automated indoor agricultural facilities. A moon 'city' would absolutely require these, just as we require these for our dynamic future all across the Earth.

See: The Intercontinental Floating Bridge 
How to Recover a Robbed Nation

There is no point then in even thinking about a new moon mission, without at the same time becoming committed to universal (free) housing; 'free' education; 'free' health care; 'free' efficient transportation; indoor agriculture; and higher order power systems, with all of them to be put firmly into place at the same time. If a single one of these dynamic factors is left out, a new moon mission won't be possible, and without a new moon-mission becoming fully implemented as the next step in standing tall, what is necessary for society to develop and survive won't be possible either. To dream about one without a commitment to the other is foolish self-deceit. A higher-order mission must unfold in lock-step with a higher-order development of human power. Without high-quality housing, education, health care, power systems, and humanist culture, the technologies and industries won't be created on which the future depends. In a very real way, NASA is but the capstone of a large pyramided of higher-order achievements that in a dynamic system operates broad and wide underneath it, feeding into it. Saving NASA requires the upgrading of the whole of civilization to the higher level required for mankind to stand tall once again in a new way. Only then can NASA play its role in enriching civilization at the leading edge. Without the dynamic power supporting it from below that matches in every aspect of civilization the quality of its higher-order mission, NASA will stand as but an empty shell. This might mean that the role of NASA must be expanded to spearhead education, indoor agriculture,, healthcare, transportation, and human living, above all spearhead electric-power development, both in nuclear-fission power, and in tapping into the galactic power-flow that powers the Sun..

See: Absolute Power - 'Solar' Power
and: The Electric Universe

Isn't this the manner in which the historic Apollo space program has unfolded? It unfolded as an integrated element of a large stepping stone into the future, that also included a higher-order magnitude in human living that at the time matched that of the necessary achievement in space. And this is what we need to do again with higher-order goals and a more powerful dynamics throughout the system. Sure, getting there poses a few challenges, but those can meet. 

Of course we can't stop there, can we?

Nothing qualifies for standing tall, unless we can stand tall and face the coming Ice Age down, which threatens to be soon upon us.

See: No Ice Age Allowed - we can block it (spirit - part 3)



Published by Cygni Communications Ltd. North Vancouver, BC, Canada - 2010 Rolf A. F. Witzsche

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