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Leaving Club Leo by C James

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Leaving Club Leo by C James

Jeff didn't like being forced to leave Club Leo, but sometimes, it's just time to go, even if it means jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire.


:nuke: :nuke: Spoilers Below!!! :nuke: :nuke:

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When I heard that CJ was writing a short story, I expected an adventure story and Cliffies (although he denies using them). This story is thousands of miles from any cliffs. It is a adventure story in the classical sci-fi (hard) vane, and to the best of my knowledge is based on fact, with all of the incidents very likely to occur. I reccommend that you read it, as it is extremely good read, and have been assured by CJ that there are no cliffies?

Edited by Red_A

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Well... on the issue of cliffs, I can agree that there are no cliffs in the story, but it is an awfully long way to fall from where they were.... :P

 

I agree, though, that it's a classic 'hard' science fiction story. All essential science is explained, and is a logical extension of modern technology (some of the technology is here today). It's also an entertaining read :)

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Being the most technological inept person ever I wouldn't have known if you had cut corners, sliced sides or punched middles... it all sounded feasible to me. I loved loved loved the last few lines Squeezable.

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Posted Image............... Great story, I was almost waiting to hear HAL to start speaking near the end Posted Image

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Posted Image............... Great story, I was almost waiting to hear HAL to start speaking near the end Posted Image

 

When I first read the story, I compared it to an Arthur C Clarke Book.

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I enjoyed reading this story very much. One thing we've learned about CJ, when it comes to the technical stuff, he does his research.

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Good read. For a second there though, I thought some kind of hidden/repressed romance will show itself between Jeff and Comm. Blake as Club Leo plunged into the atmosphere. Haha.

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I was looking for a story with a good dose of orbital mechanics. :P

 

I suppose there wasn't a good explanation for Jeff to be wearing a speedo up there in the space hotel. 0:)

 

An excellent story, CJ. :worship::worship: This was not a cliffhanger. It was a nailbiter. :music:

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I disagree. The commander and the rookie were hanging from the highest possible cliff.

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As always I'm amazed at how much technical detail goes into C James' writing. Beyond a doubt none of the other GA authors comes close to the thoroughness of background research done for their stories. I appreciate that CJ put a lot of effort into making the story plausible. It's true sci-fi and not fantasy. All of the technology utilized is available today or will be shortly. It makes the story seem that much more real.

 

Something that was not mentioned was the nature of the EVA environmental suits - the spacesuits. There is a major revolution in environmental suit design occurring that I read about recently in one of my technical journals. In fact, I incorporated it into my own anthology story, The Binary Planet. Current spacesuits are bulky and unwieldy because they need to contain a fully pressurized atmosphere over the entire body. They must be absolutely air-tight as even a small hole would spell disaster. Only the lungs require contact with a replenishing air supply, however, and only the mucous membranes, eyes and ears otherwise require a pressurized gaseous environment. The skin only requires a pressurized environment, be it gaseous, liquid or from an elastic solid. Future spacesuit design will likely involve the use of a skin-tight elastic garment and only the helmet will be pressurized. This design will almost certainly be ready by the time space hotels orbit the Earth.

 

There is one thing in the story that might not have been realistic - that Leo and Jeff could communicate with NASA and others using the radios in their environmental suits. I'm not sure about current design, but power consumption could be dramatically reduced by using short range digital transmission similar to what is used with Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. Because EVA activities would never be expected to occur very far from Club LEO, there wouldn't have been a need for longer-range communications except in the unlikely event of, well, what happened in the story, in which case the possibility of survival would have been considered near zero. Power consumption increases with the square of the distance transmitted. The weight saved in using low-power transmitters would have been deemed an acceptable trade-off.

 

Finally, not to nitpick, but wouldn't it have made sense to have checked that all systems in all escape pods were functioning properly before releasing them? I know there wasn't much time, but there was certainly enough time to delay the launch of even the first one until it was verified that all were space-worthy. I would think that would be standard operating procedure - load all escape pods, run through a checklist to verify all systems and then and only then launch them, one-by-one. Then if one of them failed the checklist, those passengers and crew could be redistributed to the other escape pods. I know they wanted to land in the Gulf, but wouldn't landing in the ocean have been preferable to losing passengers or crew? That would have wrecked the story, though, and I really did love the story as written.

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Wow, thanks!!!!

 

This was my first try at sci-fi, and it was fun to write. :)

 

I very nearly did blow the science though... I had to do a re-write when i realized that imparted velocity from centripetal force is not the apparent G but the angular momentum. Ooops. I'm just glad I caught that in time.

 

I did cut some corners, otherwise the story would have been larger and mostly tech explanations.

 

I was also, due to SWS (Stupid Writer Syndrome)on a very tight timeframe; I had procrastinated and left this way too late (had Graeme not prodded me, it would have never been written), and wrote it mainly over the course of limited spare time over a 48 hour period. Fortunately, I knew most of the tech, but I still had to do the calculations for how many feet per second would be needed to raise a perigee by a given number of miles, etc.

 

This won't be my last sci-fi.. I had way too much fun writing it. :)

 

@ Altimexis: yep, the suits, as described, are much akin to today's. I felt that was realistic, becuase the story mentions that the company cut a lot of corners, so they'd go with the cheapest things available.

 

There's one glaring problem with the elastic confinement space suit; the shape of the human body. It would work great if humans were speherical, but on an object with varying curvatures and alternating concave and convex surfaces, you'd have varying pressures. For example, in a concave area, such as the armpits, the pressure differential would force the armpit out to meet the suit. You'd need variably-tensioned elastic as well as cavity fillers, and that would require a very complex and custom design for each astronaut. Right now, the only thing that needs to be custom are the gloves. My guess is that the current constant-volume-joint design suit will be with us for quite some time.

 

You might be right about the low-power transmitters, but I've used a cell phone from a mountain peak when the nearest cell tower was 40 miles away. It was line-of-sight so vastly increased the range. Given a receiver dish at the ground stations, a transmitter the size of a cell phone could work just fine. (though, of course, it would only be line of sight, and so rather intermittent). I was thinking more along the lines of a receiver dish in GEO for the relay.

 

Would they go wifi? I hope not, that sounds like a terrible idea to me. One of the big EVA risks is an astronaut floating away at a few FPS, and you'd need comms in such a case, and they'd be out of any local net range in a few minutes.

 

You're right about checking all the escape pods first, but... that assumes they had enough personnel with the skills to do so simultaneously. Due to the corner-cutting, it was shown that they likely did not. I should have made that clearer. As for landing in the Gulf, they wanted to be in range of helicopter recovery. Landing mid-ocean would have been very bad indeed. That, incidentally, is why Apollo 13 didn't do the "Super fast return" abort option; jettisoning the dead service module and running the LEM's decent engine until the tanks ran dry when they were ready for the earth-return burn. The big argument against it; they'd have ended up in the South Atlantic, where the Navy had no ships at that time, in 48 hours. That was judged far too risky, so they went with a slower return, even though, at that time, they had no idea how to make the consumables last that long. As an example, look at the recent rescue of Abby Sunderland (there are some threads abotu this in this forum) from the Southern Ocean. Had a fishing bout not been nearby, they estimated a week to get to her for anything more than an overflight. Sure, they capsules in my story could have delayed re-entry by a few miniutes and plopped down off the US East Coast, but that takes precise timing or they're out of range. In the gulf, geography and oil platforms allow helicopter access to all of it. Anyway, That was my argument, but the biggest reason was I needed it for the story. :)

 

Thanks!!!

CJ :)

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Space, science, technology were the stars here, the main characters... and I loved them. The adventure. A wonderful read. Thank you.

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Guest The Nature Nut

Nice work, good research, unexpected end. I kept reading expecting some serious space naughty, but appreciated a suspenseful life or death end instead. Nice.

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There's one glaring problem with the elastic confinement space suit; the shape of the human body. It would work great if humans were speherical, but on an object with varying curvatures and alternating concave and convex surfaces, you'd have varying pressures. For example, in a concave area, such as the armpits, the pressure differential would force the armpit out to meet the suit. You'd need variably-tensioned elastic as well as cavity fillers, and that would require a very complex and custom design for each astronaut. Right now, the only thing that needs to be custom are the gloves. My guess is that the current constant-volume-joint design suit will be with us for quite some time.

 

You might be right about the low-power transmitters, but I've used a cell phone from a mountain peak when the nearest cell tower was 40 miles away. It was line-of-sight so vastly increased the range. Given a receiver dish at the ground stations, a transmitter the size of a cell phone could work just fine. (though, of course, it would only be line of sight, and so rather intermittent). I was thinking more along the lines of a receiver dish in GEO for the relay.

 

Would they go wifi? I hope not, that sounds like a terrible idea to me. One of the big EVA risks is an astronaut floating away at a few FPS, and you'd need comms in such a case, and they'd be out of any local net range in a few minutes.

 

Actually, the whole concept behind the elastic confinement space suit is that it is custom fit to the individual. This sort of thing is done all the time for elastic garments used to control lymphedema (a swollen arm or leg due to obstructed lymph nodes) or to prevent scar formation in burn patients. The big problem with these is they're devilishly hard to don and doff. I can imagine how difficult it might be to get into a form-fitting space suit. The ultimate solution might be to manufacture the garment on the individual each time they go for an EVA and then dispose of it afterward. Of course if one is trying to get by on the cheap, a one-size-fits-all pressurized suit might still be the answer.

 

The cell phone model is probably a better one than Wi-Fi. Cell phones use variable power output to conserve battery life. If you're near a tower, power consumption is very low, but if you're far, power consumption can be astronomical, even if you have line of site. That's why the battery in your cell phone can be drained in a matter of hours when traveling through sparsely inhabited areas. Another possibility would be a directional phased array antenna, but that would definitely not be the cheap way to do it, and it would be tremendous overkill when working close to the station.

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Wow, the goat never seems to cease to amaze me :2thumbs:

 

Not only can he type, but he must read a lot to get so much technical knowledge to write such a story.

 

I really liked how the story started out and then the tension built more and more and more until I couldn't stop reading until I knew the outcome. To finish off with the Commander's first name left me with a smile on my face.

 

I agree that CJ has taken the cliffhanger to a new level :)

 

One criticism, what is with all the littering in CJ's stories of late? First beer cans and bottles in the ocean and now drills in space :P

 

 

Steve

 

 

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Space, science, technology were the stars here, the main characters... and I loved them. The adventure. A wonderful read. Thank you.

 

Thanks!

 

Space hotels are probably closer than we think. My guess is that a space hotel will be the next manned space station after ISS. It's the best way to make a space station pay. It sounds nuts in some ways, but there are plenty of historical precedents; the massive hotels built by the railroads in the American and Canadian west, in what became national parks. Those were incredibly remote, and so expensive that only the very rich could afford them. They played a vital role in opening up the West, and something similar may be the route to space.

 

Here's one company that's already building the modules for a space hotel. The only thing they are waiting for, really, is a lowering of the price per pound to low earth orbit. SpaceX's Falcon 9 might be enough to make this viable, in which case we'll see a small (one or two module) space hotel within about eight years. Something like Club Leo would be second generation, and require an even lower price per pound to LEO.

 

Actually, the whole concept behind the elastic confinement space suit is that it is custom fit to the individual. This sort of thing is done all the time for elastic garments used to control lymphedema (a swollen arm or leg due to obstructed lymph nodes) or to prevent scar formation in burn patients. The big problem with these is they're devilishly hard to don and doff. I can imagine how difficult it might be to get into a form-fitting space suit. The ultimate solution might be to manufacture the garment on the individual each time they go for an EVA and then dispose of it afterward. Of course if one is trying to get by on the cheap, a one-size-fits-all pressurized suit might still be the answer.

 

The cell phone model is probably a better one than Wi-Fi. Cell phones use variable power output to conserve battery life. If you're near a tower, power consumption is very low, but if you're far, power consumption can be astronomical, even if you have line of site. That's why the battery in your cell phone can be drained in a matter of hours when traveling through sparsely inhabited areas. Another possibility would be a directional phased array antenna, but that would definitely not be the cheap way to do it, and it would be tremendous overkill when working close to the station.

 

Yep, cells drain quick, even in standby mode, when you're in marginal or no-signal areas. That's one reason why many people in my area carry then shut off, and only activate them for outbound calls. They're out of reception areas most of the time anyway.

 

Wow, the goat never seems to cease to amaze me :2thumbs:

 

Not only can he type, but he must read a lot to get so much technical knowledge to write such a story.

 

I really liked how the story started out and then the tension built more and more and more until I couldn't stop reading until I knew the outcome. To finish off with the Commander's first name left me with a smile on my face.

 

I agree that CJ has taken the cliffhanger to a new level :)

 

One criticism, what is with all the littering in CJ's stories of late? First beer cans and bottles in the ocean and now drills in space :P

 

Steve

 

Cliffhangers!?!?! But, but, but.. I'd never use those! And tension? in one of my stories? never! 0:)

 

Okay, a question for everyone; Did having the graphic of Club Leo in the text help visualize what it looked like? I tried hard to describe it, but it's complicated, and sometimes a picture makes things easier. That's what I was thinking, anyway. Any opinions?

 

Thanks!!

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Another great story from our resident goat!

I love the way the science works its way into the fiction!

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Just catching up on CJ's back catalogue and got to this one.

 

An excellent tale with CJ's trademark research showing through every paragraph.

 

I can't help thinking, though, that when it comes to the time of space hotels, even Americans will be using the metric system. Leo will surely be asking for a 6mm drill bit rather than a quarter inch one...?

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Just catching up on CJ's back catalogue and got to this one.

 

An excellent tale with CJ's trademark research showing through every paragraph.

 

I can't help thinking, though, that when it comes to the time of space hotels, even Americans will be using the metric system. Leo will surely be asking for a 6mm drill bit rather than a quarter inch one...?

 

Interesting!

 

I don't know... I could see it going either way.

 

IMHO, Metric sees to be coming less, not more, accepted in the US over time, at least for the last decade. For example, I had to buy a few quarter-inch bolts the other days, and there was no mention on the label of their metric size. A few years ago, it would have been on there somewhere, though likely in small print. Weather forecasts used to feature temperatures in both F and C, but now they are mostly F only. I can say for sure that the push to eventually change over to Metric is pretty much gone, though we still have the dual labeling laws for most things.

 

Space, on the other hand... NASA has adopted Metric to a large degree, especially since the Mars Climate Orbiter mission in 1999. Long story short, they used a metric measurement for thrust for the onboard engine, but the software routines for the mid-course corrections burns were written for foot-pounds. The mission profile demanded utmost precision for Mars arrival; an aerobreaking maneuver (skimming the Martian atmosphere) for Mars orbital insertion. So, they did a 4th course correction just prior to reaching Mars. The result of the metric mixup; the Mars Climate Orbiter was targeted too low in the atmosphere, probably causing it to break up. It was never heard from again. Ooops.

 

So, for Space, we went largely Metric. For example, even tracking arcs for satellites tracked by SpaceCom report orbital apogee and perigee in kilometers, not miles.

 

On the other hand, the design specs for the SLS, the new Heavy Lifter NASA wants to build, list the vehicle length in feet and the payload fairing diameter in meters. The specs for payload are in tons, but SLS was specced out by the US Senate (what could possibly go wrong there?) and the mandated payload mass is listed in tons. Are those metric or standard tons? We spell "ton" the same way for both, and the Senate didn't bother to say which. (there's a roughly 10% difference). So, even NASA doesn't know. (And if it sounds crazy that the Senate, not NASA, is coming up with rocket design specs, that's because it is.).

 

So, in, say 25 years, will we find a quarter inch drill bit in orbit? My guess is "Maybe", because they'll still be selling them on the ground, and they aren't flight hardware, but, they will probably have metric sizes too (and I do hope they don't try to put a quarter inch bolt in a 6mm hole...). Automotive tool kits, for example, often have metric and imperial sockets and wrenches.

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Interesting, CJ, about Americans and the metric system. The NASA story reminds me of an older one when a 767 ended up as a glider because the fuel was ordered in kilograms and loaded in pounds, or something like that. Anyway, they had half the fuel they thought they had and, unsurprisingly, ran out en route.

 

I consider myself bilingual when it comes to measuring - I was taught metric in school but used imperial virtually everywhere else. I'm happy enough in either system though there's no denying that metric is easier when doing sums. Since I was at school we've gradually moved to the metric system though a lot of people still think in imperial, especially for things like people's height or weight (using stones, rather than pounds, of course). We buy petrol in litres but still want to know how many miles we'll get to a gallon.

 

For a while, the government actually made it illegal to sell goods using imperial measurements. In response, shops sold milk, for example, in 2.27 litre cartons (which, by an amazing coincidence is 4 pints). There was always an exception for beer, though - it was sold in pints (and proper British pints, rather than your wussy American ones...Posted Image )

 

It's a mish-mash at the moment but we'll switch fully to metric sooner or later. Kids these days think in metric far more than I did and it'll just spread, though they still know, roughly, how big an inch is, for example. They need to to talk to us old crumblies...

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Interesting!

 

I don't know... I could see it going either way.

 

IMHO, Metric sees to be coming less, not more, accepted in the US over time, at least for the last decade. For example, I had to buy a few quarter-inch bolts the other days, and there was no mention on the label of their metric size. A few years ago, it would have been on there somewhere, though likely in small print. Weather forecasts used to feature temperatures in both F and C, but now they are mostly F only.  I can say for sure that the push to eventually change over to Metric is pretty much gone, though we still have the dual labeling laws for most things.

 

Space, on the other hand... NASA has adopted Metric to a large degree, especially since the Mars Climate Orbiter mission in 1999. Long story short, they used a metric measurement for thrust for the onboard engine, but the software routines for the mid-course corrections burns were written for foot-pounds. The mission profile demanded utmost precision for Mars arrival; an aerobreaking maneuver (skimming the Martian atmosphere) for Mars orbital insertion. So, they did a 4th course correction just prior to reaching Mars. The result of the metric mixup; the Mars Climate Orbiter was targeted too low in the atmosphere, probably causing it to break up. It was never heard from again. Ooops.

 

So, for Space, we went largely Metric. For example, even tracking arcs for satellites tracked by SpaceCom report orbital apogee and perigee in kilometers, not miles.

 

On the other hand, the design specs for the SLS, the new Heavy Lifter NASA wants to build, list the vehicle length in feet and the payload fairing diameter in meters. The specs for payload are in tons, but SLS was specced out by the US Senate (what could possibly go wrong there?) and the mandated payload mass is listed in tons. Are those metric or standard tons? We spell "ton" the same way for both, and the Senate didn't bother to say which. (there's a roughly 10% difference). So, even NASA doesn't know. (And if it sounds crazy that the Senate, not NASA, is coming up with rocket design specs, that's because it is.).

 

So, in, say 25 years, will we find a quarter inch drill bit in orbit? My guess is "Maybe", because they'll still be selling them on the ground, and they aren't flight hardware, but, they will probably have metric sizes too (and I do hope they don't try to put a quarter inch bolt in a 6mm hole...). Automotive tool kits, for example, often have metric and imperial sockets and wrenches.

 

<br />Then I'm afraid history is doomed to be repeated. Or, as Private Fraser likes to say, "We're dooomed! <b>Doooomed</b> a tell ye!!!" I mean, just how expensive and how many mistakes must there be before the penny drops and "the light bulb goes off" in the minds of those highly paid folks at NASA and in Government that you use one system or the other <u>exclusively</u> in anything to do with aviation or space - that you cannot safely run two different measuring systems in one project because Sods Law states if something can go wrong then it <b>will</b> go wrong, and Murphy's Law (a subtle but quite important embellishment!) states that <u>when</u> something goes wrong it will go wrong <b>in the worst possible way</b>. So, pity the poor astronauts, as if they won't have enough to worry about what with solar flares, cosmic rays, bone mass loss, muscle wastage and psychological stresses, never mind the normal risks of stuff just breaking down. You can be sure that if it was the NASA managers and Senators going into space themselves then they would have already sorted out this mess :( Edited by Zombie

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You can be sure that if it was the NASA managers and Senators going into space themselves then they would have already sorted out this mess

 

Oh you cynic, you... Posted Image

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Interesting, CJ, about Americans and the metric system. The NASA story reminds me of an older one when a 767 ended up as a glider because the fuel was ordered in kilograms and loaded in pounds, or something like that. Anyway, they had half the fuel they thought they had and, unsurprisingly, ran out en route.

 

I consider myself bilingual when it comes to measuring - I was taught metric in school but used imperial virtually everywhere else. I'm happy enough in either system though there's no denying that metric is easier when doing sums. Since I was at school we've gradually moved to the metric system though a lot of people still think in imperial, especially for things like people's height or weight (using stones, rather than pounds, of course). We buy petrol in litres but still want to know how many miles we'll get to a gallon.

 

For a while, the government actually made it illegal to sell goods using imperial measurements. In response, shops sold milk, for example, in 2.27 litre cartons (which, by an amazing coincidence is 4 pints). There was always an exception for beer, though - it was sold in pints (and proper British pints, rather than your wussy American ones...Posted Image )

 

It's a mish-mash at the moment but we'll switch fully to metric sooner or later. Kids these days think in metric far more than I did and it'll just spread, though they still know, roughly, how big an inch is, for example. They need to to talk to us old crumblies...

 

That 767 was the Gimli Glider; an Air Canada flight that due to both an instrumentation problem (non-working fuel gauge) and a goof on converting liters to pounds of fuel (or something along those lines) ended up suddenly running out of fuel in mid flight. They managed to set down, deadstick, at what used to be an airfeild but was now a racetrack, one in use at the time... one awesome landing IMHO, because no one died.

 

I sometimes use Metric. One way I use it often is for measurements when I need to divide, such as for figuring out where to center boards to get evenly spaced horizontal fence slats. That kind of math is tricky with a base-12 system (I'd usually have to convert feet to inches to pull it off, an extra mathematical step, then deal with fractions, ugh)) so I just use the metric side of my tape measure. :)

 

<br />Then I'm afraid history is doomed to be repeated. Or, as Private Fraser likes to say, "We're dooomed! <b>Doooomed</b> a tell ye!!!" I mean, just how expensive and how many mistakes must there be before the penny drops and "the light bulb goes off" in the minds of those highly paid folks at NASA and in Government that you use one system or the other <u>exclusively</u> in anything to do with aviation or space - that you cannot safely run two different measuring systems in one project because Sods Law states if something can go wrong then it <b>will</b> go wrong, and Murphy's Law (a subtle but quite important embellishment!) states that <u>when</u> something goes wrong it will go wrong <b>in the worst possible way</b>. So, pity the poor astronauts, as if they won't have enough to worry about what with solar flares, cosmic rays, bone mass loss, muscle wastage and psychological stresses, never mind the normal risks of stuff just breaking down. You can be sure that if it was the NASA managers and Senators going into space themselves then they would have already sorted out this mess Posted Image

 

But Zombie, I thoguht you'd be all in favor of anything with a potential for mayhem, death, and carnage? :P

 

I do agree thought... the mish-mash has caused trouble. NASA has converted to Metric for engineering (mainly) but aviation... not really. In fact, it's IMHO less metric than a decade ago. I think they did go for standardization in fuel measurements (gallons and pounds) and avoid metric after the Gimli Glider incident though.

 

Metric IMHO is inferior for some purposes, such as units of mass (as opposed to weight). When calculating acceleration rates, you need to use mass, not weight, in your calculations, such as calculating the rate of acceleration (in physics, there is no such thing as deceleration, any change in delta is an acceleration, even slowing down). An example would be figuring the acceleration rate in G's of a chunk of foam suddenly introduced to a 4000mph slip stream. For that, you need a unit of mass, and I much prefer slugs. A slug, like all units of mass, is defined by its inertia: one slug is a mass that accelerates by 1 ft/s2 when a force of one pound (lbF) is exerted on it. On earth's surface, one slug weighs thirty two point something (the acceleration rate of 1G gravity) pounds. The slug is needed for engineering calculations in non-one G environments where a kilogram or a pound change value with the G field, because they are units of weight, not mass. (a kilogram on the moon is a lot different to one on earth, or in a fighter pulling G's, etc, etc).

 

So... what's the metric equivalent unit for a slug? The glug, or, for a different scale, the mug. But, the last I heard, even European engineers still use the good old Imperial slug. :)

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Metric IMHO is inferior for some purposes, such as units of mass (as opposed to weight).

Er, "The kilogram ... is the base unit of mass in the International System of Units" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kilogram)

 

When calculating acceleration rates, you need to use mass, not weight, in your calculations, such as calculating the rate of acceleration

Right, so "force equals mass multiplied by acceleration. The unit of force is the newton (N), and mass has the SI unit kilogram (kg). One newton equals one kilogram metre per second squared." (http://en.wikipedia...._second_squared)

 

So... what's the metric equivalent unit for a slug?

These conversion tables help?

http://en.wikipedia....ki/Pound_(force)

 

the last I heard, even European engineers still use the good old Imperial slug.

Probably 'cos they're so tasty

 

But more importantly would these be cutesy little slugs?

 

http://1.bp.blogspot.../large_slug.JPG

 

Or the stuff of nightmares?

 

http://xaede.deviant...-Slug-269588396

 

:)

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