Copyright © 2006 by James R. Brown. Published by The Mars Society with permission
DEPOT IN EARTH ORBIT TO HELP MARS MANNED MISSION, AND MAKE LUNAR OTHER OUTER SPACE PROJECTS MUCH MORE PRACTICAL
James R. Brown
A Depot in Orbit Can Help Mars, and Other Outer Space Projects Much More Practical. Dealing with the fuel storage problem by taking advantage of the shade at EarthÕs orbit, which is at 5¡ above the absolute zero of interstellar space. The fuel depot can start with O2, CH4, and H2O. Ways of addressing the orbital fuel transfer problems and solutions. Addressing the disposable vs. robust reusable launchers issues (using SpaceX an example). Discussing other ways to fill the depot, such as asteroids and lunar sources; which have the potential to promote outer space commerce. How a fuel depot in Earth orbit can make Mars and Lunar missions, the space station, and other outer space projects more practical. Does a fuel depot need full-time residents and a space station? What is the required ground support for a fuel depot? Total cost estimates possibly much less than $5,000,000 to start a fuel depot in orbit.