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'[OT] GMoon?'
2007\09\14@114558 by Mike Hord

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www.iht.com/articles/2007/09/14/america/moon.php?page=1

Google has offered to pony up $25M for a successful unmanned
lunar rover which returns hi-res images of lunar exploration
artifacts and travels over 5km successfully.

Merely landing, rolling a few hundred meters, and returning a few
hi-res images will net you $25M, but then, why go to the moon
and NOT see an Apollo landing site?

Mike H.

2007\09\14@115920 by Sean Breheny

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$25M seems like a VERY small budget for such an operation, doesn't it?

On 9/14/07, Mike Hord <spam_OUTmike.hordTakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> wrote:
> http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/09/14/america/moon.php?page=1
>
> Google has offered to pony up $25M for a successful unmanned
> lunar rover which returns hi-res images of lunar exploration
> artifacts and travels over 5km successfully.
>
> Merely landing, rolling a few hundred meters, and returning a few
> hi-res images will net you $25M, but then, why go to the moon
> and NOT see an Apollo landing site?
>
> Mike H.
> -

2007\09\14@131635 by Mike Hord

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Typo- failing to find a human artifact loses you $5M.

Yes, $25M is too small to plan it on, but it's less of a
"do this to win this money" deal, and more of a "win
this prize and see your name everywhere" sort of thing.

The Ansari X-Prize was only $10M, which didn't recover
Scaled Composites' outlay to get SS1 built and into
space.  However, the press from that DID get them a
contract with Virgin, which may net them FAR more.

The same could easily go for this.

Mike H.

On 9/14/07, Sean Breheny <.....shb7KILLspamspam@spam@cornell.edu> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2007\09\14@144153 by alan smith

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We should do this as a community effort?  I'm Russel can hook us up with his rocket group :-)

Sean Breheny <.....shb7KILLspamspam.....cornell.edu> wrote:  $25M seems like a VERY small budget for such an operation, doesn't it?

On 9/14/07, Mike Hord wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2007\09\14@150527 by James Newton

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Community Unified Moon Project?

<sad laugh>

--
James

-----Original Message-----
From: EraseMEpiclist-bouncesspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTmit.edu [piclist-bouncesspamspam_OUTmit.edu] On Behalf Of
alan smith
Sent: Friday, September 14, 2007 11:42 AM
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
Subject: Re: [OT] GMoon?

We should do this as a community effort?  I'm Russel can hook us up with his
rocket group :-)

Sean Breheny <@spam@shb7KILLspamspamcornell.edu> wrote:  $25M seems like a VERY small budget
for such an operation, doesn't it?

On 9/14/07, Mike Hord wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2007\09\14@154406 by Mike Hord

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Great!  How're things going on the multi-parameter datascope
project that started a few months (couple years?) back?

That'll come in really useful when debugging this!

Mike H.

On 9/14/07, James Newton <KILLspamjamesnewtonKILLspamspammassmind.org> wrote:
> Community Unified Moon Project?
>
> <sad laugh>
>
> --
> James
>
> {Original Message removed}

2007\09\14@210757 by Russell McMahon

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>> > Google has offered to pony up $25M for a successful unmanned
>> > lunar rover which returns hi-res images of lunar exploration
>> > artifacts and travels over 5km successfully.

>> > http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/09/14/america/moon.php?page=1

>> > Merely landing, rolling a few hundred meters, and returning a few
>> > hi-res images will net you $25M, but then, why go to the moon
>> > and NOT see an Apollo landing site?

>> Sean Breheny <RemoveMEshb7TakeThisOuTspamcornell.edu> wrote:  $25M seems like a VERY
>> small budget
>> for such an operation, doesn't it?

>> We should do this as a community effort?
>> I'm Russel can hook us up with his rocket group :-)

Your wish is my command :-)

Below is what John Carmack, creator of Armadillo Aerospace and the
odds on favourite at present to win this "prize" has to say about it.
File that away for future reference. In a few years
time you may want to frame it :-).

On lists everywhere for the past N decades you have read "We could go
to orbit like this" / "A Moon landing could be done cheaply by / ..."
etc. All good stuff, but almost exactly zero chance of anything real
world coming of it. And then, there's this email. it's not quite the
equivalent of Kennedy's "We will go to the moon" speech. But it's
close. John isn't actually saying he *will* do it or try to. But the
chance of him being able to go to sleep at night without thinking
about it from now on is probably low. There are, when you look, a
whole list of if's, might's & could's in there. But the last sentence
tightens things up a lot.

We may, and I hope we are, be seeing history being made here. A back
of the envelope / evening's thinking plan to put a rover on the moon.
With a little help from Google and a lot of encouragement from we the
cheering squad.



               Russell

_______________


{Original Message removed}

2007\09\14@231532 by Russell McMahon

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> Community Unified Moon Project?
>
> <sad laugh>

Just send $ to John.
If popular support doubled the prize value to him then he'd virtually
certainly try and virtually certainly succeed. That's about as
community unified as you are liable to get.


       Russell


2007\09\14@233721 by Russell McMahon

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> Merely landing, rolling a few hundred meters, and returning a few
> hi-res images will net you $25M, but then, why go to the moon
> and NOT see an Apollo landing site?

Because, alas, it would be liable to add substantially to the
complexity.
Landing "somewhere" on the moon is hard enough. Navigating to within a
few 100's of metres of a preselected spot is far far harder. It adds
not only navigational complexity but, extremely importantly extra
"delta V" or propellant requirements. A mission like this eliminates
up every gram that it can of surplus mass, and selecting a target
precisely would probably increase the difficulty by a number of times,
if such things can be quantified.


               Russell


2007\09\15@000256 by Jake Anderson

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Russell McMahon wrote:
>> Merely landing, rolling a few hundred meters, and returning a few
>> hi-res images will net you $25M, but then, why go to the moon
>> and NOT see an Apollo landing site?
>>    
>
> Because, alas, it would be liable to add substantially to the
> complexity.
> Landing "somewhere" on the moon is hard enough. Navigating to within a
> few 100's of metres of a preselected spot is far far harder. It adds
> not only navigational complexity but, extremely importantly extra
> "delta V" or propellant requirements. A mission like this eliminates
> up every gram that it can of surplus mass, and selecting a target
> precisely would probably increase the difficulty by a number of times,
> if such things can be quantified.
>
>
>                 Russell
You still have to aim for "somewhere" on the moon, might as well make
the dart an interesting place ;->

2007\09\15@011914 by Russell McMahon

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>> Landing "somewhere" on the moon is hard enough. Navigating to
>> within a
>> few 100's of metres of a preselected spot is far far harder.

> You still have to aim for "somewhere" on the moon, might as well
> make
> the dart an interesting place ;->

Not the point, alas.
You definitely aim "somewhere" but if eg your TLI (translunar
insertion) burn produces a less than 100% intended  "good enough"
result, if the imprecisely known mascons in the lunar surface on your
final orbit perturb you not too much, if your descent stage comes up
to power a little more slowly than expected, or if .... BUT the net
result is that you are liable to be able to complete the basic
mission, then you probably go with what maximises the probability of
not failing totally.

In the early days of nuclear standoff the reason that they could build
"The Hole" under Cheyenne mountain and hope that it would survive an
attack was that targeting accuracy was low. A direct hit of a suitably
large megatonnage would always have killed it but the chances of
achieving this were low.

When it comes to sending rovers to the moon on a $25M total budget you
are closer to the good old days than to laser guided
fly-down-your-chimney munitions. None of the Apollo landers arrived
precisely at intended target and AFAIK there is now some uncertainty
where some of them actually are.

Both locating something on the lunar surface which is lost to modern
science AND going there is a vast challenge.  The sites whose
locations are precisely* known are that of Apollo 11, 14, 15 and the
Soviet Lunokhod 2, so if one were going to visit an earlier landing
site, those would be the best choices. Incidentally, those 3 Apollo
sites also make utter rubbish of Fox TV's otherwise utterly rubbish
documentary that claims that the US never landed men on the moon.



       Russell


* Finding the reason is left as an exercise for the student :-)

2007\09\15@030109 by wouter van ooijen

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> > We should do this as a community effort?  I'm Russel can hook us up
> > with his rocket group :-)

> Great!  How're things going on the multi-parameter datascope
> project that started a few months (couple years?) back?
>
> That'll come in really useful when debugging this!

No, the universal PIC board must be finished first! It was started
earlier and will of course be the hardware base for the project.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu



2007\09\15@033506 by Russell McMahon

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>> > We should do this as a community effort?  I'm Russel can hook us
>> > up
>> > with his rocket group :-)

> No, the universal PIC board must be finished first! It was started
> earlier and will of course be the hardware base for the project.

Consensus is that whatever is used must not be *able* to run Windows
:-)



           Russell



2007\09\15@044439 by Dario Greggio

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Russell McMahon wrote:

> Consensus is that whatever is used must not be *able* to run Windows
> :-)

I got a Cash Machine crashing 2 weeks ago at my bank, and it was running
XP professional... I had a big laugh !

--
Ciao, Dario

2007\09\15@053809 by Howard Winter

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Russell,

On Sat, 15 Sep 2007 19:35:17 +1200, Russell McMahon wrote:

> >> > We should do this as a community effort?  I'm Russel can hook us
> >> > up
> >> > with his rocket group :-)
>
> > No, the universal PIC board must be finished first! It was started
> > earlier and will of course be the hardware base for the project.
>
> Consensus is that whatever is used must not be *able* to run Windows
> :-)

I'll drink to that!  :-)  And as a show of good faith, I'll supply a free copy of OS/2 to the project (actually eComStation - quod googlae).

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2007\09\15@053942 by Howard Winter

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Dario,

On Sat, 15 Sep 2007 10:44:35 +0200, Dario Greggio wrote:

> Russell McMahon wrote:
>
> > Consensus is that whatever is used must not be *able* to run Windows
> > :-)
>
> I got a Cash Machine crashing 2 weeks ago at my bank, and it was running
> XP professional... I had a big laugh !

I've seen a 15-foot railway station train display showing the Blue Screen of Death, and I had my credit card eaten by a "self checkout" running NT4, only a year
ago!

Cheers,



2007\09\15@055317 by Dario Greggio

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Howard Winter wrote:

> I've seen a 15-foot railway station train display showing the Blue Screen of Death, and I had my credit card eaten by a "self checkout" running NT4, only a year
> ago!

The BSOD is quite common on Displays, you're right :)

As for the Cash Machine, yeah, it's sad: at least, it did reboot
automatically (watchdog, I guess) after some 5 minutes...
Still, I'd ues at least an embedded XP or CE, or anyway something
"stripped down and doing only what's asked for" ... and not a general
purpose OS.
Of course this is just my thought, since I don't know the details.

With Linux (though I'm no big fan, by now), you can "tailor" the OS to
do only what's needed, and I say it reduces those problems...

--
Ciao, Dario

2007\09\15@061535 by Tony Smith

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> > > Consensus is that whatever is used must not be *able* to
> run Windows
> > > :-)
> >
> > I got a Cash Machine crashing 2 weeks ago at my bank, and it was
> > running XP professional... I had a big laugh !
>
> I've seen a 15-foot railway station train display showing the
> Blue Screen of Death, and I had my credit card eaten by a
> "self checkout" running NT4, only a year ago!


OS/2 is pretty common in older ATMs.

At least you got a PC, some people use an X-Box instead.  It always looks a
bit odd when you open up an ATM and see a bland 'white box' PC sitting in
the middle of it.  An X-Box would look even odder, I guess.

Tony

2007\09\15@065037 by Peter P.

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I think that 25E6 $ would pay for the rear left wheel hubcap on a moon bot in
the spirit of Spirit (or miniature Lunokhod). Any realistic review of the known
moon programs from the past would show that very clearly.

Peter P.


2007\09\15@150946 by William \Chops\ Westfield

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On Sep 14, 2007, at 8:59 AM, Sean Breheny wrote:

> $25M seems like a VERY small budget for such an operation, doesn't it?

$25M is NOT a budget.  It's an AWARD.

(I wonder if there are significantly different tax aspects to
awards vs "income" ?)

BillW

2007\09\15@203527 by Jake Anderson

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Peter P. wrote:
> I think that 25E6 $ would pay for the rear left wheel hubcap on a moon bot in
> the spirit of Spirit (or miniature Lunokhod). Any realistic review of the known
> moon programs from the past would show that very clearly.
>
> Peter P.
>
>
>  
They would also show its impossible to build a sub orbital rocket that
can ferry 3 people to 100+km twice in a week for $20M. Although as I
seem to recall it was actually done.

2007\09\15@213354 by Russell McMahon

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Picking up on several comments:

>> $25M seems like a VERY small budget for such an operation, doesn't
>> it?

> $25M is NOT a budget.  It's an AWARD.

The two may converge.

John Carmack, the current primary contender for this challenge has
half a chance of doing it for $25M as an incremental amount on his
present program.

>> I think that 25E6 $ would pay for the rear left wheel hubcap on a
>> moon bot in
>> the spirit of Spirit (or miniature Lunokhod). Any realistic review
>> of the known
>> moon programs from the past would show that very clearly.

Apollo was in the $50 Billion range all up. Meaure that in any eras
dollars you wish as it's somewhat hard to tie down exactly what should
be attributable.

So at about 0.05% of the total Apollo budget, placing a rover on the
Moon sounds like a bit of a challenge. And it is. Which is the idea.
But it's possible that John, or others, will succeed.

FWIW it cost the best part of $US30M to win the $US10M X Prize. Having
Paul Allen fund a lot of it didn't hurt.

$25M left wheel hubcaps are in the same realm as $70,000 (or whatever)
toilet seats. If it's non government and the guy directing the work
directly and writing most of the software is also paying the bills
then it won't HAVE hubcaps, and the wheels will come from the same
place as many of his other hardware supplies already come from. Viz -

               http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McMaster-Carr

> They would also show its impossible to build a sub orbital rocket
> that
> can ferry 3 people to 100+km twice in a week for $20M. Although as I
> seem to recall it was actually done.

Not, I imagine according to Faux TV :-)

FWIW Armadillo is *probably* about to win the $2M Northrop Grumman
Lunar Lander Challenge October 26-28 Holloman Airforce Base, New
Mexico - BE THERE!
Seems appropriate in the circumstances. They crashed one of their two
landers recently but the remaining one has already exceeded the
challenge requirements. If it can repeat it on the day ... .
       http://space.xprize.org/lunar-lander-challenge/

Attached - Armadillo Aerospace's Pixel in flight.





       Russell


*probably* -

Hey, this is rocketry.
Probably means (as in all other areas) a value greater than 50%.




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2007\09\17@042906 by Alan B. Pearce

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>None of the Apollo landers arrived precisely at intended target

Not so, the second one landed right close to the Surveyor spacecraft that it
was supposed to land near. The astronauts removed a video camera from
surveyor, and brought it back to earth.

2007\09\17@163045 by Gacrowell

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> -----Original Message-----
> From: spamBeGonepiclist-bouncesspamBeGonespammit.edu
> [TakeThisOuTpiclist-bouncesEraseMEspamspam_OUTmit.edu] On Behalf Of Russell McMahon
> Sent: Saturday, September 15, 2007 7:34 PM
> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
> Subject: Re: [OT] GMoon?
...
> $25M left wheel hubcaps are in the same realm as $70,000 (or
> whatever)
> toilet seats. If it's non government and the guy directing the work
> directly and writing most of the software is also paying the bills
> then it won't HAVE hubcaps, and the wheels will come from the same
> place as many of his other hardware supplies already come from. Viz -
>
>                 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McMaster-Carr

I was showing my boss the McMaster website the other day, and my print
catalog.  He remarked that it was pretty neat and he'd have to get one.
I told him that he probably can't - how they're really hard to come by
(I got mine second-hand from a corporate purchaser).  He said: "Well, if
they're hard to get, then they're on ebay."  Sure enough, you can get up
to $50 for a current catalog, and even quite a bit for an older one.
Supply and Demand in action!

Gary

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