Canada Has Put a Man in Space

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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby FourEyedTroll » 28 Jan 2012, 08:15

Lord Chrusher wrote:A few disorganised points:

I think you underestimate how complicated it is to design and build a useful satellite.


My point was more about the difficulty of getting a working launch vehicle and being able to operate it rather than the engineering challenges, given as there are quite a few more countries that produce satellites than those who launch them.

I concede the point about the actual engineering difficulties of satellite construction though. I'm not suggesting in any way the the engineering challenges are easier or harder, I was making an observational point.


One stumbling block to international collaboration in space flight is the same technology that can launch a satellite can be used to deliver a nuclear weapon anywhere on Earth. In addition satellite are now vital to military communications and intelligence gathering.


Indeed. Black Arrow was a by-product of the Blue Streak programme, a British launch vehicle for thermonuclear warheads. In the end the government just bought Polaris from the states.

Surely though having the UN governing space exploration would help to reduce the suspicion of rocket development being used to advance nuclear warhead delivery capabilities of any one nation state? or am I just being too much of an idealist?


Despite sharing the same head of state Australia and Britain are completely separate countries.


I didn't say they weren't, that was a 'Devil's Prosecution' to Brad's 'Devil's Advocate' about whether that made Black Arrow an Australian launch capability instead of a British one. The argument there was at what point do you distinguish between geography, nation, state and identity? I wasn't trying to reclaim sovereignty of Australia for Britain.


The reason why the US launches from Florida and the European Space Agency launches from French Guiana is that since the Earth spins it takes less fuel to reach orbit the closer you are to the equator.


There is also that point but for the sake of brevity I decided that wasn't worth extending my already rather long post to include. That factor doesn't prohibit space launches from being made elsewhere, it just makes it more challenging (and it's not the only deciding factor either or else surely US launches would be made from Hawaii, surely?).

24 kilometres is not that high. It is only a couple kilometres higher than the cruising altitude of the U-2 spy plane and significantly lower than the 37 km reached by a modified MiG 25. The highest manned balloon reached 34 km and the highest parachute jump was done from 31 km also from a balloon. The record for an unmanned balloon is 53 km. The two kids used a normal weather balloon which normally reach the same height as the kid's ballon or higher.


Well, I consider 24km to be pretty high. I certainly wouldn't want to be without a pressure suit or parachute from that height. It's not technically space, but as space has no distinct boundary line (unless you want to argue about the 100km definition, in which case is 100,000.01m in altitude more space-like than 99,999.99m?) and given that we're talking about the achievement of two kids of school age, this is still a pretty cool thing.

It's certainly high enough to make international news, even if it's not that impressive to some folks.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Brad » 28 Jan 2012, 17:23

Seems legit.

Though Chris' point about the equator was why I was wondering of South Africa/Australia as well - seemed to be in no better situation on the other side of the planet that far away.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby FourEyedTroll » 28 Jan 2012, 17:39

Well, Australia's a bit closer than the UK, as is South Africa. If Brazil ever gets a full scale space programme going, they'll be laughing of course.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Dutch guy » 28 Jan 2012, 18:12

The boundry of 100 kilometers is not as arbitrary as you might think. It was calculated as being the altitude where any aerodynamic vehicle would have to travel faster than orbital velocity to generate sufficient aerodynamic lift to support it's weight. (And thus already be in orbit in the first place). This does not happen at exactly 100 km ofcourse, but the rounded number is easier to define and clearer than saying 98,54 km (Note: this number pulled out of my ass as an example)

I'm not saying it wasn't a cool project and a damn fine achievement for a group of kids, i'm just saying people should stop calling it space. It's the upper atmosphere, sure. Just, you know, NOT space!
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby FourEyedTroll » 28 Jan 2012, 18:27

Well, I suppose not, I suspect by it's very nature a gas filled balloon couldn't rise above the atmosphere into 'true space'. But at least for the purposes of camera photographs, it's looks space-like.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby allonewordnospaces » 28 Jan 2012, 19:05

An Australain band called Tame Impala did this for a film clip a couple of years ago.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jekYAm3fkA
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby empath » 29 Jan 2012, 04:51

Brad wrote:Seems legit.

Though Chris' point about the equator was why I was wondering of South Africa/Australia as well - seemed to be in no better situation on the other side of the planet that far away.


The other factor is that both those options have large bodies of water (Indian Ocean and south Pacific) to facilitate marginally softer landings well away from urban areas and fragile crops, etc.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Lord Hosk » 29 Jan 2012, 06:31

Hawaii is at 28 degrees N to 18n with Cape canaveral at 28 degrees N, while its possible to get more south the cost of delivey of the manufactured goods to hawaii far outweighs the equitorial benifits. Hawaii is tiny
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Lord Chrusher » 30 Jan 2012, 00:19

And far away from everywhere - it is over a five hour flight from Honolulu to the west coast of North America.

Distance is also a drawback for launching British rockets from Australia. The Black Arrows were built in Britain and shipped out to Australia. Adelaide is over 20 hours from London by plane and the Woomera test range, where the rockets where launched form is out in the middle of no where over 500 north of Adelaide.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby WBAGNR » 30 Jan 2012, 03:15

Brad wrote:Britain has had 8 astronauts, incidentally.


Don't you mean Cosmonauts?
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Geoff_B » 30 Jan 2012, 04:14

I thought Cosmonauts were russian
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Lord Chrusher » 30 Jan 2012, 05:49

It is the Russian term. I assume as an English speaking country that the UK would use the term astronaut.

According to Wikipedia Britain has never had a manned space program and does not greatly support the European Space Agency manned space program. Hence the UK has not had any official astronauts until Timothy Mace who is yet to fly. However three UK citizens have flown in space as space tourists or private astronauts while four more UK born citizens who also hold US citizenships have flown as part of the US manned program.

Canada on the other hand has had eight Canadians fly as part of the Canadian Space Agency and had one space tourist.

As I think at this point government funded manned space flight to be a waste of money and the International Space Station to be a large white elephant I think the UK has the right idea.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Elomin Sha » 30 Jan 2012, 05:55

We had the Top Gear Space Programme. That must count for something.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby FourEyedTroll » 30 Jan 2012, 08:30

Lord Chrusher wrote:It is the Russian term. I assume as an English speaking country that the UK would use the term astronaut.


We use both terms, though most people say astronaut and that's by far the more popular word, being an American term it's found it's way here in popular culture more than Cosmonaut has. It basically depends on who they flew with, and Michael Foale (a native of my home-town) is both an astronaut and a cosmonaut. I prefer (and use) the term cosmonaut most frequently, I think it sounds nicer to the ear.


As I think at this point government funded manned space flight to be a waste of money and the International Space Station to be a large white elephant I think the UK has the right idea.


I disagree, but given the amount of discussion here already, I think that's another thread for another day. I'm sure the subject of space exploration will come up again...
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Geoff_B » 30 Jan 2012, 08:32

Elomin Sha wrote:We had the Top Gear Space Programme. That must count for something.


The most ambitious, and consequently the most rubbish, of them all :D
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby plummeting_sloth » 30 Jan 2012, 08:58

A man on the moon verses a Reliant Robin into a hillside.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby FourEyedTroll » 30 Jan 2012, 09:05

Not sure it was that rubbish, there was something of pure awesome watching that launch, and then watching the SRBs jettison. I love watching that clip. The mini-game on the Top Gear website is fun too, just been playing that. Best I managed was 4141.81 (doesn't specify units as far as I can see).

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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby PlasmaCow » 30 Jan 2012, 10:05

Just after WW2 Britain gave all our advanced rocketry research to the USA for free because the post-war government didn't want the expense of further research and saw it as pointless (not the best move for British interests immediately before the Cold War). The research gave american rocketry and by extension the space programme a massive boost.

So yeah, you're welcome america. Yet again.


Lord Chrusher wrote:Distance is also a drawback for launching British rockets from Australia. The Black Arrows were built in Britain and shipped out to Australia. Adelaide is over 20 hours from London by plane and the Woomera test range, where the rockets where launched form is out in the middle of no where over 500 north of Adelaide.

Surely any flights would've gone straight to a landing strip at Woomera rather than Adelaide (except perhaps to refuel).
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby epocalypse » 30 Jan 2012, 11:00

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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby plummeting_sloth » 30 Jan 2012, 13:35

PlasmaCow wrote:Just after WW2 Britain gave all our advanced rocketry research to the USA for free because the post-war government didn't want the expense of further research and saw it as pointless (not the best move for British interests immediately before the Cold War). The research gave american rocketry and by extension the space programme a massive boost.

So yeah, you're welcome america. Yet again.


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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby Brad » 30 Jan 2012, 13:50

Lord Chrusher wrote:It is the Russian term. I assume as an English speaking country that the UK would use the term astronaut.

According to Wikipedia Britain has never had a manned space program and does not greatly support the European Space Agency manned space program. Hence the UK has not had any official astronauts until Timothy Mace who is yet to fly. However three UK citizens have flown in space as space tourists or private astronauts while four more UK born citizens who also hold US citizenships have flown as part of the US manned program.

Canada on the other hand has had eight Canadians fly as part of the Canadian Space Agency and had one space tourist.

As I think at this point government funded manned space flight to be a waste of money and the International Space Station to be a large white elephant I think the UK has the right idea.


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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby FourEyedTroll » 30 Jan 2012, 15:49

Wiki might be ignoring Bjarni Tryggvason as apparently he was born in Iceland despite being a Canadian Astronaut. But for fear of starting yet another long-winded discussion, I would argue that nationality and citizenship are about more than where you're born or where you live, and that he is Icelandic by birth does not exclude him from being counted a Canadian Astronaut. I suspect the CSA would agree with me on that much.
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Re: Canada Has Put a Man in Space

Postby FourEyedTroll » 30 Jan 2012, 16:09

Apparently, it's not Bjarni.

It appears Jeremy Hansen & David Saint-Jaques are both yet to fly as they passed NASA training in 2011 and as we are all too aware, NASA can't launch people any more, they need Russian help.

Ken Money never flew either according to Wiki, though he was payload specialist in reserve on a mission or two, and a ground controller/co-ordinator. I guess NASA never had enough seats for him to get a flight as first-crew before he retired.

After some searching the web due to Wiki not having a page for him (amazingly), it turns out Mike McKay never flew as he retired before his first flight due to health reasons. He worked for CSA as an engineer for some time after though.
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