>tfw you realise it will cost TRILLIONS of dollars to build spaceships to mine asteroids and colonize other planets and billions of dollars more to build "space hotels and space tourist spots".
>tfw you realise no corporation on the planet has the funds nor the investor confidence to see through such a risky venture
>tfw the US barely spends 0.5% of its GDP on NASA
Not even private corps like SpaceX or Blue Origin can realistically realize the economics of space tourism, mining and colonization. Even if they somehow magically are able to, they’d still have to factor in the countless (expensive) safety procedures that have to be employed in space. Lets face it. THE MONEY ISN'T THERE.
Also theres always the danger of some stray meteorite trolling around and just fucking up a trillion dollar investment in an instant.
And lets be honest here. Even a world war 3 is not going to cut it. You’d still have to find trillions of dollars from somewhere to build the spaceships and shit. Killing off a billion people and irradiating half the planet is NOT going to fund your spaceark.
So basically the future of space travel and tourism is doomed and completely economically unfeasible several times over unless we discover some kind of “space magic” that is both cheap and efficient to defy the laws of physics...
Elon is probably going to go on /suicide watch/ once he realizes that he can't die on Mars.
Tfw communism is the best choice but people are greedy
You are right, we need to develop other technology so we can put automated solar panel and hydroponic farm manufacturing robots on mars or something, but this process involves going into space at some point to help figure out which direction to go in.
>So basically the future of space travel and tourism is doomed and completely economically unfeasible several times over unless we discover some kind of “space magic” that is both cheap and efficient to defy the laws of physics...
and that's news to you? kek
thing is, there isnt all that much to do in space. because it's mostly empty.
'asteroid mining' is (for now) a pipedream of people who play too many scifi video games. it's just too impractical and not even remotely profitable.
same for off-planet colonies. aside from research there is nothing they provide that couldnt be done on earth for a fraction of the cost.
establishing a small research base on the moon, and maybe even on mars, is feasible. would take a LOT of time to plan and execute, but it is feasible.
actual 'colonization' of other planets though? WAY beyond our capabilities. would require so much shit we have absolutely no way of getting on the moon (or mars), and even if we had, they'd still be far from self-sufficient (which is kind of required for an actual human settlement to thrive)
>if only humans werent humans, then my utopian societal models could finally work!
You see the thing is, humans need salaries, sick leave, maternity leave, sabbatical, and annual holidays in order to be motivated enough to get productive shit done and reduce the frequency of procrastination.
The only way i see realistic space travel and tourism on a global scale is if we see massive leaps in robotics and AI to automate the entire process to cut down human costs entirely.
But unfortunately due to hurr durr "ethics", thats probably not going to happen anytime soon unless we are forced to act i.e. in the case of a high probability asteroid impact.
>establishing a small research base on the moon, and maybe even on mars, is feasible. would take a LOT of time to plan and execute, but it is feasible.
Setting up small, manned research stations is probably the only feasible thing to do with current economics. But even then, you'd have to convince the public that their tax payer money is not going to waste. Like what if the mission fails? Everyone will be like "space travel is a waste of money!"
If a corporation did it, investors will need more than kool aid to invest in several billion dollar R&D ventures for blue skies research.
I mean sure we can always send probes and shit, but thats missing the point. We NEED a power source that is both cheap, efficient and allows thrusts of atleast of a fraction of a speed of light to get anywhere.
>THE MONEY ISN'T THERE.
Nigger, do you understand how world economies produce something called GDP?
Do you know that in 10 years we will have enough funds to send folks into space to mine asteroids?
I would ask you to get an education, but I doubt your chromosome count will allow you do achieve such a feat.
Kill yourself asshole.
>he believes that just because world GDP is currently 77 trillion we can mine asteroids
>not realizing most countries barely spend even 0.5% in space research; most of it just involving sending probes, which on the occasion have a high failure rate
>>not realizing most countries barely spend even 0.5% in space research; most of it just involving sending probes, which on the occasion have a high failure rate
>anon not realizing that the majority of the countries that contribute to the world GDP growth are the same countries that fund space travel
>Do you even have a basic understanding of macroeconomics?
And do have any basic understanding of reality?
Sure, you'll get a lucky few who'll one day step on Mars a couple of decades from now, but unless a feasible power source is discovered/invented that is cost effective and energy efficient, talks about space exploration or tourism is just going to remain a pipe dream.
>And do have any basic understanding of reality?
>Sure, you'll get a lucky few who'll one day step on Mars a couple of decades from now, but unless a feasible power source is discovered/invented that is cost effective and energy efficient, talks about space exploration or tourism is just going to remain a pipe dream.
We have the technology to build such a device, but the Limited Test Band Treaty of 1963 prohibits building nuclear pulse propulsion devices.
People are finally starting to realize what businesses have known for decades! Like most things in government, projects need motivation. For the most part, that motivation comes in the form of PROFITS. The amount of capital that would need to be put into space programs before they could start turning a respectable profit is ASTRONOMICAL. Meaning that most businesses are not going to be interested in a project that has a high failure rate and low chance to return profits. Until there are some major break-throughs significantly improving the success rate of space programs, then we will not be seeing space exploration and development. The real question is, will those break-throughs occur before we manage to decimate our own population or VR makes it irrelevant?
>We have the technology to build such a device, but the Limited Test Band Treaty of 1963 prohibits building nuclear pulse propulsion devices.
lmao ofcourse we always have the "technology". but you do realise that is just a "hypothetical" means of propulsion. None of them have been field tested yet nor viable for mass deployment.
And Nuclear ban doesn't mean squat.
Still will cost trillions to build space stations or spaceships to realize mass consumerism and tourism.
>Like most things in government, projects need motivation.
Like the Apollo Project. Or the Orion Project. Or the Near Earth Asteroid Project....
>For the most part, that motivation comes in the form of PROFITS.
Back in the day, the motivation was fear of the Soviets beating us into space. Now it's a half ass attempt to do something worthy. That, or we're waiting for the Chinese to finally land on the moon so we can kickstart the Space Race again.
>The amount of capital that would need to be put into space programs before they could start turning a respectable profit is ASTRONOMICAL.
Using a bit of ingenuity has allowed Space X to build a landable 1st stage version of a rocket. Such ideas would DRAMATICALLY lower the cost of launching anything into LEO.
>Meaning that most businesses are not going to be interested in a project that has a high failure rate and low chance to return profits.
Tell that to Space X, Orbital Sciences, United Launch Alliance, etc etc.
>Until there are some major break-throughs significantly improving the success rate of space programs, then we will not be seeing space exploration and development. The real question is, will those break-throughs occur before we manage to decimate our own population or VR makes it irrelevant?
Those breakthroughs are happening right in front of your eyes, anon.
All you need to do is pull your head out of the ground and open your eyes.
>lmao ofcourse we always have the "technology". but you do realise that is just a "hypothetical" means of propulsion.
It's not hypothetical if the technologies (and even the test data) exists. Now it becomes an issue of engineering the Orion Drive into an efficient means of propelling a spacecraft into space.
>None of them have been field tested yet nor viable for mass deployment.
No, but early concepts as I just implied moments ago have been field tested.
>And Nuclear ban doesn't mean squat.
Perhaps then you wouldn't mind living in a world irradiated with fallout from nations trying to arm themselves with nuclear weapons. Perhaps you don't mind living in a world where the Cold War still rages.
>Still will cost trillions to build space stations or spaceships to realize mass consumerism and tourism.
The cost of building a one-of-a-kind space station like the ISS is about $150 billion.
If you have even bothered taking a basic course in economics, you might learn of something called "economies of scale", and how building MORE of something actually REDUCES the cost of building those items.
>The real question is, will those break-throughs occur before we manage to decimate our own population or VR makes it irrelevant?
Its hard to say because theres so much optimistic popsci BS flying around in the media every day.
The first generation VR devices will most likely be uncomfortable as fuck, not to mention negative physiological effects such as mind disorientation when you come back to "reality". SJWs will pretty much crucify VR as it is, no doubt about that.
We aren’t going to decimate our own population. That’s just Malthusian nonsense. The future environment will change but we’ll learn to adapt (unless there is an ELE on the horizon like asteroid impact or supervolcano eruption we can’t avoid).
The odds of discovering a cheap, efficient power source to achieve propulsion in the light speed range, is remote. If there was actually a research team looking into that I’m pretty sure the media would have reported it by now (unless classified research is being done by private firm or governments, then you’ll never find out, obviously). Even so, if the propulsion discovered is found to be cost-effective, they will license out the technology sooner or later. It serves absolutely no purpose to “hide” the technology from the masses as the end goal is always profit maximisation. And there’s trillions and trillions to be made if space was unlocked….
>If you have even bothered taking a basic course in economics, you might learn of something called "economies of scale", and how building MORE of something actually REDUCES the cost of building those items.
Yeah, only if building a space station is CHEAP enough to begin with does economies of scale start to factor in, Einstein.
Absolute fucking moron.
>Yeah, only if building a space station is CHEAP enough to begin with does economies of scale start to factor in, Einstein.
I take it you have never been taught the value of "risk versus reward either".
>Absolute fucking moron
Speak for yourself. You clearly have no idea what the hell you're talking about.
Good luck with your life. You're going to need it.
>>gets called out for his incorrect definition of economies of scale
I'm clearly dealing with dumbasses on this thread.
>>retorts to poisoning the well
How so? By calling out anons counterargument over building cheaper and cheaper spacecraft?
>I'm done here.
I have this warm fuzzy feeling at the nape of my neck that you were "done" a long time ago.
>And there’s trillions and trillions to be made if space was unlocked….
making an awful lot of assumptions there.
where would that profit come from? asteroid mining? i really doubt that it could be even remotely competitive with earth based mining operations.
>have to launch thousands of tons of industrial equipment into space
>need enormous amounts of energy
>require highly specialized and trained personnel
>have to somehow get large quantities of mined ores and minerals back to earth in a safe and practical way
expecting this nightmare to turn a profit is some seriously wishful thinking
Currently it costs $10,000 to put a pound of payload into earth's orbit
Assuming you want to build the "USS Enterprise". Total weight: 94,780 tons
That means you need close to $2 trillion just to get all the materials into space PLUS the actual cost of building the Enterprise.
>That means you need close to $2 trillion just to get all the materials into space PLUS the actual cost of building the Enterprise
There is no need to build such a large spacecraft.
The largest designs (Orion Drive) are fall smaller and cost WAY less than your preposterous idea.
> Lets face it. THE MONEY ISN'T THERE.
Actually, the money is clearly there, but it's being allocated for what Humans clearly prefer to do with 100s of billions of dollars each year in wealth: *W*A*R*
What's the lifetime budget for the F-35 program? $1.5 trillion or something like that? That shows well what we violent simians prefer to do with massive tranches of wealth.
Space exploration was always just a sideshow to the main Human pursuit of KILLING EACH OTHER.
>Why do you assume that all the materials must be launched into space?
>Everything we need to explore and colonize space is already up there, it's just in the wrong shape.
so instead of launching mining equipment into space, you want to launch an entire industrial production facility into space to produce your mining equipment on site?
that requires even MORE technology that doesn't exist, and is even MORE impractical to get started with.
>it will cost TRILLIONS of dollars to build spaceships to mine asteroids and colonize other planets and billions of dollars more to build "space hotels and space tourist spots".
Oh, bullshit. There is such a thing as progress.
1) NASA, as it currently is, is HORRIBLY inefficient.
2) NASA gets over $10 billion dollars a year of money that could be spent, instead, on non-stupid shit.
3) Within 10 years, SpaceX is likely to have a fully reusable, Saturn-V-class rocket that can fly thousands of times, fly multiple times per day, cost under $100 million to build, and cost little more than fuel to fly.
4) With these new cost-effective rockets, the money NASA currently wastes could put millions of tons into orbit every year.
5) Getting to orbit is the hard part. Everything else is only expensive because they can't afford to practice and experiment due to high launch costs.
We don't have to spend any more money than we're already spending to bootstrap a profitable space mining and colonization industry in a reasonable timeframe. We just need to continue to improve our methods, and stop throwing money at stupid shit.
>Within 10 years, SpaceX is likely to have a fully reusable, Saturn-V-class rocket that can fly thousands of times, fly multiple times per day, cost under $100 million to build, and cost little more than fuel to fly.
Sorry, nobody with an honest brain believes that.
you only have to do so once.
The required launch mass could be rather low, probably about as much as a couple apollo launches.
I get my estimates from the below sources
>>that requires even MORE technology that doesn't exist
when we decided to go to the moon, we did not have the technology to do so.
Yeah, SpaceX is making such poor progress toward that goal. It's not like they've flown back and landed a first stage or anything.
The problem here is that lots of people have this impression of the established space industry as being full of very clever fellows, so whatever results they achieve must be the best anybody reasonably could. Never mind the lack of any serious competitive pressure since the late 1960s, or the perverse incentives against progress for the contractors and bureaucrats who have been in charge of it all up until the turn of the millennium.
The space industry is what the aircraft industry would be if governments had rushed to lock down private development efforts, like the Wright Brothers, and only allowed their own pet efforts, like the Langley Aerodrome, to proceed: eventually it sort of works, but it never gets to be very good because the people who hold the options build comfortable careers and businesses on the status quo.
The only halfway sane rocket development program between Saturn V and Falcon 1 was OTRAG, and that was crushed with political pressure for being too good.
Now progress has resumed, and there's no reason for it to stop.
I don't about decreasing costs to manufacture but Space X has already built a reusable shuttle (its already been mentioned in this thread, the Falcon 9). It not unfeasible to expect the cost of launch be only fuel in the next 10 years and that would truly be a significant step forward. No more launching paper airplanes into space.
I have great difficulty because of an injury. I could easily heal this wound.
But no. I arbitrarily decided that to heal this wound, I must first make 5000 squats then run 10 000 km a day for 5 years.
Then I could heal my injury.
Here the history of humanity and its dumbest invention: the economy.
>where would that profit come from? asteroid mining?
Well to be honest there are some interesting developments related to the formation of crystal matrixes in low gravity. Considering even metal has a crystal like structure at the microscopic scale and the potential for developing batteries and the like bases off of crystal matrices I'd say there's a lot of valuable research to be done in space and profits will appear which are unrelated to simple resource extraction. Manufacturing is where it will be at.
You'd /have/ to take this into account. Any space habitat would need some form of defence system.
Whether it be a laser system, a hardened shell of waste mass left over from mining operations or something I haven't even thought of yet.
This. It would be pretty easy to get a solar reflecting sheet up there to melt asteroids and then I don't know... use high powered magnets or something to extract the ore from melted asteroids. That's my crackpipe rendition, I'm no engineer.
As for further refining... I don't know. You don't have to deal with the same containment issues like on earth is our obnoxious gravity. So no mass necessarily needed for containment you just have to keep the stuff hot enough to remain fluid.
>where would that profit come from? asteroid mining?
Imagine if everyone currently alive was living on one island, let's say Honolulu. Or let's say they were spread out over Hawaii, so there aren't other nearby islands.
Where's the profit going to come from, for people who invest in building and stocking long-range sailboats? There's nothing out there but more of what you've got in Hawaii, and none of it's explored or developed. Just empty wilderness. Who needs it? What's the point? What are they going to find that's better than Hawaii?
So some people go into space, they gather materials and generate energy, and build another world to live in. We've got space to live here. We've got energy, we've got materials. Who needs it? What's the point?
But they get a world. They get a WORLD. There's your fucking profit. What's a world worth? There aren't any up for sale already, so it's hard to put a dollar figure on that, but don't you figure that's worth a whole hell of a lot, even if it's not as good as Earth in the ways that are most obvious to us, here, today?
The great private rush into space has only just begun. The question of profit is certainly an interesting one, but I think we also need to keep in mind that is not the sole motivating factor behind human endeavour. I know that he is brought up very frequently in these discussions, but consider Elon Musk. Elon Musk does not need any more money. Shit, he doesn't seem to know what to do with the money he does have. And yet he has convinced his company to aggressively pursue space research, and at the end of the day, whatever short-term profits they may be able to make are secondary to the real purpose of the of the company, which is to do things that Elon Musk believes are fucking cool
I might add that it's very easy for us to forget that technology does sometimes leap ahead in an incredible and dramatic fashion.
Consider the invention of the Telegraph, which turned information from something that moved at the speed of horses and steamships into something that moved seemingly instantaneously. Consider powered flight. Consider the atom bomb. It is not unreasonable to assume that in the next 10 years, a technology is disruptive and remarkable is any of these may emerge and shake the very foundations of our world. The act of moving tons of freight into orbit may well go from a near insurmountable challenge to something that is done all over the world as casually as you are I would log into the Internet.
Remember Lord Kelvin whenever pessimism threatens to fully overwhelm you, /sci/. It's easy to lose sight of incredible things when you have blinkers on that reflect the world that you know right now.
A week from today, some obscure little lab in the middle of nowhere might find out about some strange little quirk of physics I could let us do things that at this moment seemed utterly impossible. We certainly can't count on that, but history has shown again and again that you can never rule that out.
I dream of disruption, and in the meantime, I view our current fumbling efforts with affection and a sense of yearning.
When you are talking about trillions, you are talking about a number in a server somewhere or about printed paper? What the fuck do you know?
Mining asteroids will be profitable whenever its cheaper to mine that asteroid than to mine earth, this time will come, and sooner than this scenario.
It may eventually be cheaper to mine asteroids than to mine on earth, but it won't be feasible if the resources needed to do so have already been consumed.
This is what will happen. You and a lot of the asshats posting in this thread are living in a fantasy world with your faith in the all powerful and glorius 'market'. Humans are not all powerful. The 'market' is not a divine inspiration, given to us by an all powerful being to lift humans into the cosmos (or some such nonsense). Either we preserve our planet, or we die off. Anyway, what do I care, its not like my descendants will be the ones fighting for the scraps. People like you can have that party on their own.
>It will cost TRILLIONS of dollars
Inflation-adjusted, the Boeing 747 has throughout its history cost between about $150 million and $350 million.
About 1,500 have been sold.
This means the total amount of money spent on Boeing 747 aircraft throughout its history is between about 0.25 trillion and 0.5 trillion 2015 US Dollars.
The Boeing 747 is not the only jet aircraft produced. I think you'll find that we have, in fact, spent
>TRILLIONS of dollars
on the task of constructing a fleet to ferry humans to and from far more mundane frontiers.
It costs (rough ballpark) about $100 million to build and launch a Falcon 9, which has a payload to LEO of about $13,000 kg - taken as a totally random example rocket with good data on it. Something like 99% of that is the labor cost of constructing the actual rocket. (Fuel and materials are around 1%, and there's room for some profit margin in there too.)
The only reason anybody thinks any kind of space development and exploitation is even slightly practical is the belief that rockets can be made reusable. Pound for pound of payload, orbital rockets are pretty much as expensive as transatlantic jet aircraft - the cost difference simply comes from being to use an aircraft over and over again, but having to throw away the rocket. SpaceX, Blue Origin, and co. all exist because they think they can do reusable space launch.
So let's say that somebody manages to make rockets as reusable as jet aircraft, which are designed to last something like 30,000 long-haul cycles. And let's say (pulling a number completely out my ass) that this makes the rocket twice as expensive for a given payload - more like $200 million.
According to SpaceX, Fuel is around 0.3% of the cost of launching a Falcon 9, and let's further say that it takes another 1% of the cost every launch to get it safe and ready for flight again. (This is a pessimistic estimate - it doesn't take $3.5 million to get a $350 million jet aircraft ready for flight. But maybe reusable rockets will always be fundamentally so much harder.)
So every flight of this reusable rocket costs us thirteen thousand dollars, to launch about thirteen thousand kilograms into low earth orbit.
This gets us about a dollar per kilogram to LEO with reusable rocket technology, or about 70 bucks for an average person's ticket to orbit not counting the reentry vehicle. Call it $1000, including the reentry vehicle, extra life support mass, baggage, etc.
Now, of course, if reusable rockets just turn out not to be a thing, then of course it makes no economic sense whatsothehellever to exploit and develop space. Launching stuff just costs too damn much.
However, the space cadets are talking about a future where reusable rockets are developed. Since this changes the economic landscape completely, you should keep this in mind when talking about how obvious asteroid mining, space colonization, etc. is too expensive to ever make any kind of sense.
Finding an efficient method to mine asteroids would pay for itself. Some asteroids are worth trillions if not more in raw materials. It will only be more profitable once resources get scarce here. Plus, when fusion power becomes the norm, companies will beg to get government contracts to mine deuterium from the moon.
The reason the US barely spends any money in R&D in general is because we spends so much on welfare programs. Also, if anyone tells you its the military, just remember that military research got you computers and rockets in the first place.
all the metal in the earth's core is worth a bazillion $ and soon it will be economical to mine the earth's core with fusion thorium reactors because of cuts to welfare programs for spics/niggers
The vast majority of money spent on the military isn't spent on military research, it's spent on military upkeep. Also known as the idea that you don't have to bother trying to outthink anyone, when you can bully other countries around with a big army and expensive nukes. If our leaders werent close sighted retards, they could scale back the dick waving a bit and put the savings into actual military R&D so that we can put the arms race back on track where it belongs.
(Heck, putting humans in space to do actually useful things starts making actual profitable business sense at even $1,000,000 per ticket. Richard Garriot raised about $5 million doing experiments while he was up there - if it'd cost him less than that to go up, you'd see whole businesses spring up around doing that. In-space testing and assembly of satellites is another big one, as is satellite refueling and maintenance.)
>But even then, you'd have to convince the public that their tax payer money is not going to waste.
You can appeal to the public in other ways than purely financial terms.
If, say, the Chinese settled on the moon to mine He3 and sent crafts to Titan to load up from the giant hydrocarbon lakes and ensure not only energy independence but also the equivalent of an hydraulic empire, the public will be up in arms as to why the leadership stumbled and lost the hegemony.
Logos is good but pathos rules.
Oh boy, look at all the singularityfags in this thread. We're never going to get far in space. It's a waste of money. Deal with it.