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Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Comments

Old Corporal

Hi,

Have you ever read anything about the possibility that they were slowly developing the X15 into an orbital vehicle? I've read somewhere that that was considered back in the early sixties, but that JFK derailed it by dictating the Man-on-the-Moon before 1970. I don't know/remember much about the time frame (when were the X15 flights, how far up were they going, etc vs. the Mercury, Gemini & Apollo flights?), but if that was the endgame for the X15, then its too bad we didn't continue the program. If we had, then we could have accomplished Wernher von Braun's dream already, instead of having the rather limp-wristed version (our current space program including the space station) that we have now.

Its too bad, since, at least in my opinion, the space program has driven at least 25% of our technological innovation in the last 50 years. Think of all the things we do with transistors, and why did we develop them? Because vacuum tubes are too delicate and too heavy and too power-hungry to really use in an ICBM. And them little buggers have snuck into jest about everthin.

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