[LMB] space age, take 2

Paula Lieberman paal at gis.net
Sat Dec 16 20:13:42 GMT 2006

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "James Nicoll" <jdnicoll at panix.com>

> You know, ICMBs can put small payloads into geostationary orbit. It's

Are you SURE you mean geo orbit, and not low earth orbit?   To get something 
to geo requires an additional stage or large  apogee kick motor on the 

> discussed in HAZARDS DUE TO COMETS AND ASTEROIDS. Unfortunately, I _do_ 
> mean small payloads because ICBMs are optimised to place payloads in Red 
> Square (or the Pentagon), not up into orbit, so we're talking hundreds of 
> e

Low orbit Minuteman could get things into, but not high orbit.  Geo is 
a -high- orbit.

> kg (and then there's the issue that for some reason, there doesn't seem to 
> be any provision in the standard configuration for slowing the payloads 
> once they reach their targets).
> On the plus side, both the US and Russia have a bunch of ICBMs on hand, so 
> maybe they could put together a fleet of missiles to launch payloads to 
> the moon. It's important for both sides to be clear on what they are

Not with THOSE booster, they aren't powerful enough.  The moon is a LOT 
further away than geo, its more than ten times further.

> doing, because hundreds of rockets taking off at once from ICBM fields 
> could be misinterpreted...

That's silly, thse reason why ICBMs were put in missile silos was to make it 
more difficult to target and destory them.  Both  the ex-USSR and the USA 
have space launch centers that have NO HARDENING-- that is, send a nuke to 
hit Cape Kennedy, and that's the end of US  shuttle launching.   The missile 
siles were designed to survive nuking.    The Soviets/Russians launched 
their -space- launches from their two space launch sites, NOT from missile 


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