Re: SPACE: Is ISS a boondoggle?, was Re: SPACE: Why so much EVA onISS?

From: Robert J. Bradbury (
Date: Wed Mar 21 2001 - 09:26:42 MST

On Wed, 21 Mar 2001, Eugene Leitl wrote:

> On Wed, 21 Mar 2001, Chuck Kuecker wrote:
> > Boost it up a few tens of miles, and use a solar sail???
> You don't want to do one thing: operate a solar sail
> anywere with nonzero drag, as in LEO. I don't have any
> numbers, but I'd be really surprised if you could unfold
> a solar sail without deorbiting *real quick* anywhere
> below one meameter.

If that's true then I have to believe the upcoming Planetary
Society launch is going to be a real disappointment. I cannot
believe that a Russian ICBM is going to be able to get a sail
into very high orbit.

Also, can someone explain this 51 degree thing and why it is
a "commie" orbit? Also, is 0 degrees over the equator or
over the poles? And can we get some costs and molecular densities
for higher orbits? My read on some on the Shuttle pages that
are in my "Space Station" pages suggests that the payload
capacity to the station is almost half that of LEO. Is that
just because its higher or is that because we have it in
an orbit that the Russians can get to too? What about the
Arriane 5 -- does that have an greater or lesser cost than
the Shuttle or the Proton on lifting mass to the ISS?


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