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Minutes of October 10 Meeting
Oklahoma Space Alliance met at Earl’s Rib Palace in Moore on October 10. Attending were Steve, Karen and Brian Swift, Patrick Cox, Will Decker, Russ Davoren, Christopher Gutierrez, Richard Holtzschue, Cliff McMurray, Isvin Prieto, Vickey Richartz, Tim Scott, Rosemary Swift, Rachelle Thibodeau, Dennis Wigley and Syd Henderson. This was Patrick’s first meeting.
October 10 was the last day of World Space Week. [Comment: World Space Week is October 4 -10 of each year, and is the largest space-related celebration of the year, involving 1503 events this year in more than 80 countries. Sputnik 1 was launched on October 4, 1957 and the Outer Space Treaty was signed on October 10, 1967.] Our meeting was planned to be shortened so people could see The Martian afterward.
Steve delivered a President’s address, which was published in last month’s Update. For those who don’t have internet access, I reproduce it here:
" Fully recognizing that progress in space exploration and settlement must proceed on a step by step basis, I sometimes need to pause, looking past the detail, and envision where all this space activity may lead. The following thoughts were selected from a vision I expressed in 2012 in a paper titled Dancing among the Stars:
"Whereas the first people moving into space must focus on immediate missions and the requirements of survival, their goals will eventually broaden. With the passing of centuries, their numbers will multiply through new births and migrations until their pursuits resonate with diversity. Their own goals will differ as from the summons of a single bell to the inspiration of a magnificent overture. They should all be encouraged. Space has room enough to grow, time enough to learn, challenges enough for any spirit and opportunities for all. They should all be welcome. Let them sing their songs of life and dance among the stars.
"There are those who say, “I’m not interested in some ideal cosmic destiny that will take eons to accomplish. If I was out there in space or on a planet I would work and have a share in a mining company or maybe a transport company.”
"The destiny envisioned is not about some idealistic quest for a nebulous future; rather, it is about living and working, about people and families, about achievement and reward and about reaching out to new opportunities. Accomplishing this vision and destiny requires not years but centuries and, yes, perhaps even eons. People are even now orbiting the earth. In a few years, more permanent bases and habitats will exist. In a few centuries, civilizations in space, on moons and on planets will flourish. Colonies will migrate to deep space and other solar systems. While the wave front of human expansion proceeds at its own pace, amazing and thriving civilizations will grow in its wake; the songs of life will flourish; and the laughter of children will ring out on many worlds."
We went over a plan to bag a near-earth asteroid and mine it for water. A lot of near-earth asteroids are actually the former nuclei of comets and can potentially contain a lot of water. The idea is to extract the water using concentrated sunlight to cook the asteroid. The company proposing to do this is APIS (Asteroid Provided In-Situ Supplies).
Blue Origin announced that they will be launching from Complex 36 at Cape Canaveral. This is the same complex that the Mariner missions, Pioneer 10, Surveyor 1, and many other unmanned payloads were launched, although it’s been unused for ten years.
We looked at landscape pictures viewed from the ISS, including Lake Amadeus in Australia, and a section of the Bahamas cut by channels. The latter was such high resolution that if you look really close, you can see an airplane flying over the Bahamas.
NASA has confirmed the existence of liquid, if very salty, water on the surface of Mars.
China launched their first Long March 6 rocket on September 19, carrying a payload of twenty satellites, [Comment: Long March 6, aka Chang Zheng 6, is one of China’s series next-generation launch vehicles, along with Long Marches 5 and 7. It’s actually beaten Long March 5 to launch. Of these, Long March 5 is the heavy launch vehicle, Long March 6 small to medium launch vehicle, and Long March 7 medium to heavy launch vehicle. Long March 7’s first launch has been postponed to next year. Long March 5 will also probably have its first test launch in 2016 and will be the launch vehicle for the Chang’e-5 lunar sample-return mission in 2017.]
We didn’t do much business at the meeting, but we do have $991 in the checking account and $203 in cash.
Notes on OSIDA Meeting
The Oklahoma Space Industry Development Authority met on November 10 at the Oklahoma Department of Transportation building in Oklahoma City. Board members in attendance were Jack Bonny, Bailey Siegfried, Don Wetakam, Hay Edwards and Robert Cox. Vice Chairman Cox presided in the absence of Mr. Cunningham. Rosemary Swift, Syd Henderson and Dave Sheely attended on behalf of Oklahoma Space Alliance. Three other people intended, including Ross Robinson and a reporter.
Governor Fallin has ordered all state agencies to develop plans for cutting nonessential spending by 10%. OSIDA has one of the smallest budgets of any state agency, with little spending they deem nonessential. Plans are due by December.
Spaceports in America are developing new infrastructure including a large hangar at Spaceport America.
The Air Force’s joint use agreement operations remain stable at the Spacport. It sounds like the Spaceport does well out of this agreement.
Minutes by OSA Secretary Syd Henderson
Contact person for Oklahoma Space Alliance is Claire McMurray.
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Norman, OK 73070
Webmaster is Syd Henderson.
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