Re: SPACE: Lunar Warfare

Michael Lorrey (
Tue, 14 Jan 1997 16:53:28 -0500

The Low Willow wrote:
> On Jun 5, 9:53am, Michael Lorrey wrote:
> } I found a ref ona NASA page stating that one Megaton was 4.2 x 10^22
> } ergs.
> Equals 10^15 calories equals 10^6*one gigacalorie equals James number.

He said it was 6 kt of TNT, while my calculation was 15 tons....

> } > only has an energy yield of 6*10^10 Joules.
> } Yes it is quite small, and could easily be formed into the same
> } stealthed shapes that Mark is puportin for nukes.
> Since no one from the Earth crowd has even suggested an active defense
> of Earth, this is a bit beside the point.
> } 4.2 x 10^22 ergs per Megaton, I calculated 15 tons of TNT equiv. for the
> } 1 ton rock, so while I was seriously wrong in my own estimate, Mark was
> } under by almost three times. I don't know why that number stuck in my
> 3 times versus 3 orders of magnitude. Poor Mark. What was your point
> in saying that? You're the one James cited for confusing force and
> energy units.

I was admitting my own mistake. See, even the hugely arrogant Mike can
admit it when he is wrong. I was also posting the correct answer, which
was not what Mark had posted.
> } A 10 MT device will only have a damage area of between 4-8 times larger
> } than a 300 KT device, which is why the powers have gotten away from
> } using big nukes, as they are not as cost effective as using the same
> } amount of material in four or more devices.
> Which makes your defense problem much harder, as you now get to try to
> detect and shoot down many more and smaller missiles. 30 times more
> missiles, using the sizes just above. Admittedly Earth has to have that
> many more rockets delivering the warheads, but I think it just might
> manage that for the sake of defense.

Not at all. I was referring to atmospheric impacts. According to James,
earthgov will still need to build and use meganukes to have as much of
an impact under vacuum conditions as a much smaller nuke would on earth,
so not only are we looking at a differential of energy expenditure and
application of four due to gravity, but the two environments of
atmosphere and vacuum also put earth based forces at a disadvantage.

As you all have read my statements before, that war strategically is a
competition of cost effectiveness in battle. These two differences, in
gravitational potential and environment, between earth and the moon are
significant in giving any lunar David a much more even hand against the
terran Goliath.
> } an earth based target. While I do not know how to calculate the actual
> } or estimated equivalence, I think that this is a significant factor to
> } consider.
> So is the 15 ton rock impact.
> Antisocial arrogance is only for those of us who deserve it.


Michael Lorrey ------------------------------------------------------------ President Northstar Technologies Agent Inventor of the Lorrey Drive

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