Podcast #48: Space Commerce with Tess Hatch

“I think we are at the dawn of a new era in commercial space exploration.”–Elon Musk

 

image: Shutterstock

With the May 30 launch of two American astronauts to the International Space Station aboard the SpaceX Dragon Crew capsule, history was made.  This was not only the first launch of astronauts from American soil since 2011, it was the first ever launch of astronauts into orbit by a commercial enterprise.  Elon was right; the dawn is here.

Tess Hatch is a venture capitalist with an aerospace engineering background.  She has worked for SpaceX and interned at NASA.  She had better know space commerce–she invests in it.  From Starlink, to space tourism and asteroid mining, I discuss with her the very imminent future of space commerce, in Seeking Delphi™ episode #48.

You can subscribe to Seeking Delphi™ on Apple podcasts , PlayerFM, MyTuner,  Listen Notes, and YouTube.    You can also follow us on twitter @Seeking_Delphi and Facebook 

 

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Episode #48: Space Commerce with Tess Hatch

YouTube slideshow of episode #48

RELATED PODCASTS

#42: Going to Mars, Featuring Moriba Jah

#35: NASA The Next 10 Years, with Dan Dumbacher

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Podcast #42: Going to Mars, featuring Moriba Jah

“I want to die on Mars–just not on impact.”–Elon Musk

“I am convinced that humans need to leave earth.”–Stephen Hawking

Mars One–not as good an idea as some thought.

Elon Musk and the late Stephen Hawking are not alone in their calls for humanity to become a multi-planetary species.  But they certainly are the most  visible advocates for space colonization.  And while the moon might be the most obvious jumping off point to the solar system and beyond, nothing stands out as a potential site for long term settlement more than Mars.

But just how realistic is sending astronauts to the Red Planet anytime soon–let alone colonizing it permanently?  The obstacles are many, and aerospace engineering may well be the least of them.  The human biological, psychological tolls and survival strategies–radiation, low gravity, isolation and the marshalling air, water, and food resources–all stand in the way.   And then there is the economic cost and the political and public will.  In this edition of Seeking Delphi,™ I talk to former NASA Mars mission navigator, Moriba Jah, about the many challenges of leaving of our home planet.

 

A reminder that Seeking Delphi is available on iTunes and PlayerFM,  and has a channel on YouTube.  You can also follow us on Facebook.

 

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Episode #42:  Going to Mars, with Moriba Jah

  YouTube  slideshow for episode #42

Subscribe to Seeking Delphi™ on Apple Podcasts

Subscribe to Seeking Delphi™ on PlayerFM

Subscribe on YouTube

Follow Seeking Delphi™ on Facebook @SeekingDelphi

Follow me on twitter @Seeking_Delphi

Podcast #38: Science Fiction, The Evolutionary Mythology of The Future, with Tom Lombardo

“Politicians should read science fiction, not westerns and detective stories.”– Arthur C. Clarke

“I’m leaving my body to science fiction.”–Steven Wright

 

Science fiction pervades our culture.  Movies, television, books, even stage productions.  It’s rich history, and its significance in shaping our views of the future–or for that matter, inspiring us to invent the future–is the subject of this wide ranging discussion with author Tom Lombardo.   Among the subjects we cover:

  • Science Fiction as a pervasive view of the future; all aspects of human experience, not just technology and science.
  • Parallels between mythology and science fiction
  • Science Fiction as social satire and even humor (think Kurt Vonnegut and Douglas Adams, for instance).
  • The danger of Hollywood’s apocalyptic future visions becoming self-fullfilling prophecies
  • Some of the best future predictions from scifi.

You can subscribe to Seeking Delphi™ on Apple podcasts , PlayerFM, MyTuner,  Listen Notes, and YouTube

 

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Science Fiction, The Evolutionary Mythology of The Future. Click for Amazon link.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Episode #38, Science Fiction, The Evolutionary Mythology of The Future

YouTube slide show of episode #38

 

Center for Future Consciousness (Tom’s web site)

Books by Tom Lombardo

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Podcast #35: NASA, The Next Ten Years, with Dan Dumbacher

“I did not come to NASA to make history.”–Sally Ride

“Going to Mars would make NASA great again.”–John Grunsfeld

 

A new space race is upon us.  But unlike the two-way competion days of the 1960’s and early 1970’s, it is now a multi-player  competition to dominate and exploit the final frontier.

Where does NASA sit in all of this, in the rapidly changing world of the second space race?  In Seeking Delphi episode #35, host Mark Sackler gets an overview of where the agency is headed, from former NASA program director for launch systems, Dan Dumbacher.  There’s also a very special announcement of the upcoming ASCEND** space conference, slated for Las Vegas in November of 2020.

**Accelerating Space Commerce,  Exploration, and New Discovery

 

You can subscribe to Seeking Delphi™ on Apple podcasts , PlayerFM, MyTuner,  Listen Notes, and YouTube

 

 

Orion Capsule. NASA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Episode #35, NASA: The Next Ten Years, with Dan Dumbacher

YouTube slideshow for episode #35

Links:

NASA home page 

ASCEND space conference 

Dan Dumbacher biography  

AIAA 

 

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News of The Future This Week: September 26, 2019

“The promise of autonomous vehicles is great.”–Dan Lipinski

Ah, the promise may indeed be great,  but the inevitable unintended consequences, as is depicted in the cartoon to the left, will continue to perplex.   Personally, I don’t have to worry about my wife running off with a driverless car.  She’d be perfectly happy to run off with her horse.

While you’re reading about all this week’s future-related  news, don’t forget that you can subscribe to Seeking Delphi™ podcasts on Apple Podcasts, PlayerFM, MyTuner,  Listen Notes, or YouTube (audio with slide show) and you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Hear Seeking Delphi™ host Mark Sackler’s views on the future, and how we should think about it, on Matt Ward’s podcast, The Disruptors, episode #131.

Autonomous Vehicles–Everybody is getting into the act.  Now Hyundai says it will team with Aptiv to market a self-driving car by 2022.  The big question, though, is whether all these players will set a standard to communicate with each other.  That subject was addressed as part of an APF award-nominated Seeking Delphi™ podcast on future driving.

America: not so keen on this? Image: Shutterstock

–Before the automotive powers-that-be get too enthusiastic about rushing to market, they better start dealing with consumer attitudes.  A University of Washington study suggests American commuters are not too keen on the idea of self-driving cars.

–Just when you thought all the autonomous car issues had pretty much surfaced, along comes BMW with an ad on their twitter account about having sex in self-driving cars.  They quickly removed that add with no explanation for the deletion.

Orion capsule. Image: NASA

Space/NASA–NASA has taken a major step towards its goal of returning American astronauts to the moon by 2024.  They have ordered 6 Orion capsules–with an option for an additional 6–from Lockheed-Martin

–Astronauts will need more than new vehicles to return to the moon;  they will also need new spacesuits.  Current models are designed only for spacewalks, not for walking on the lunar surface.  To that aim, NASA now plans to test new spacesuits on international space station in 2023–one year in advance of the present lunar landing schedule.

–NASA hasn’t forgotten about the rest of us.  We don’t need spacesuits, but we do need to watch out for asteroids that pose a threat to Earth.  A new space telescope to watch out for them is planned for a 2025 launch.

Energy–Researchers at Duke University claim a breakthrough technology for creating new meta-materials that can be used to harvest thermal energy.  They work much like solar cells, but absorb from the infrared, rather than the visible, spectrum.

–IKEA doesn’t just make furniture.  They make energy, lots of energy.  They do it by investing heavily in solar and wind energy, and now say they will produce more than they consume by sometime next year.

Quantum computing–Does Google reign supreme in the quantum world?  That’s what they are claiming with what as they say is the solving of problem that classical computers can’t touch.  Here’s more on quantum computing: a Seeking Delphi™ podcast with Strangeworks founder and CEO whurley (William Hurley), recorded at SXSW in Austin, Texas in March of 2018.

Seeking Delphi™ podcasts are available on Apple Podcasts,, PlayerFM, MyTuner,  Listen Notes, or YouTube (audio with slide show) and you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook 

News of The Future This Week: September 7, 2019

“I don’t believe in a conspiracy to hide the existence of extraterrestrial life.”–David Duchovny

“Where are they?”–Enrico Fermi

This week’s stories include some plausible explanations for Fermi’s paradox. Conspiracies–or an indifferent kid with a cell phone–are not among them.  There is one chilling theory that the story leaves out, though, and a link to that is also provided.

While you’re reading about all this week’s future-related  news, don’t forget that you can subscribe to Seeking Delphi™ podcasts on Apple Podcasts, PlayerFM, MyTuner,  Listen Notes, or YouTube (audio with slide show) and you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Hear Seeking Delphi™ host Mark Sackler’s views on the future, and how we should think about it, on Matt Ward’s podcast, The Disruptors, episode #131.

The truth is out there…or not.

E.T./Fermi Paradox–Enrico Fermis asked “where are they?”  Singularity Hub provides a brief podcast with some explanations,  But they left out the chilling dark forest theory–best described in Cixin Lui’s novel, The Dark Forest. It’s explained here.

Space/Moon/Mars–Too difficult to launch rockets to the moon on a regular basis?  No problem–build an elevator there.  A new approach just might be feasible.

–Never mind the Moon.  Elon Musk continues to focus on Mars.  There are a myriad of engineering and biological problems he’ll need to solve before he can send humans there–but with help from NASA, his SpaceX is already looking for the ideal landing site.

–Speaking of SpaceX, they have some issues much closer to Earth.  Fast Company reports that they are playing what amounts ot a game of chicken with their StarLink satellites. And they made the European Space Agency blink first.

–Starlink, of course, intends to provide wireless global internet access from space.  But there’s plenty of competition.  And now, aerospace startup OneWeb claims it will be able to reach virtually the whole planet–even the artic–with an array of 650 satellites and a few ground stations, by sometime next year.

Reuse Beer. Ewwwww.

Sustainability–Recycling? Sustainable energy, food production, and waste processing?  They sound like great ideas.  But beer made from recycled toilet water? Ewww.

Artificial intelligence–A Seattle-based research lab has reached a milestone by creating an A.I. that can pass an 8th grade science test.  Great.  Now all we need to do is invent an 8th grader that can pass it.

–On a more practical note, Alex Zhavornkov, and his InSilico Medicine have developed an A.I. program that has shown promise in designing drug molecules.  In partnership with the University of Toronto, their program created  compounds that have  shown promise in the lab.

Self-Driving Technology–Cars….trucks….busses…boats…flying taxis.  Just about any kind of autonomous vehicle imaginable is being developed somewhere by somebody.  But a self-driving golf ball?  Why would anyone do that?   Nissan did it–apparently because….they can!

Seeking Delphi™ podcasts are available on Apple Podcasts,, PlayerFM, MyTuner,  Listen Notes, or YouTube (audio with slide show) and you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook