Well, at least you tried to provide a video for evidence, although from what I’ve seen so far I’d say you’ve chosen poorly. I’ll come back to this later, first I want to come back to Mars vs. Moon, which you still haven’t provided any evidence of why the Moon is so superior.
First, I just got off watch and had the opportunity to look up some numbers: Earth surface to Moon surface and back to LEO has a total dV of 20,740. Since we have not seen a plan on how to refuel on the Lunar surface, the rocket would need to either carry its entire fuel payload with it, or we would need to launch a separate vehicle from which to refuel the return craft. This, of course, does not account for actually landing the rocket, which would currently require even more fuel.
Earth surface to Mars surface, on the other hand, with NO gravity assists (I believe a Lunar assist would provide ~500 dV on its own) is 18,910 dV: 10% less than that of the Lunar trip. On the upside, there is already a well-defined plan on how you can refuel once you’re on the surface of Mars using the resources available on the Martian surface. This means we don’t have to carry any fuel there at all: a return vessel can carry more non-fuel supplies with it, and/or we don’t have to “waste” a second vessel as a storage tank.
Looks like in terms of launch efficiency, Mars is winning.
The Martian surface, while certainly hostile, is less hostile than the Lunar surface. It is not a near-vacuum, it has a much lower temperature differential, it is not in a state of cycling between pure light and pure night every 15 days. It’s not any more expensive or difficult to send spare vessels with supplies to maintain life for extended periods of time than the Moon is, and each of those vessels could be designed to offer a fully-fueled ship ready to depart. The Martian gravity is stronger than the Moon’s, which should be less unhealthy for colonists long term (citation needed).
Looks like in terms of colonial longevity, Mars is winning.
The best argument the Moon has for it is the far shorter trip with far more launch windows, but as previously stated any situation that is going to require immediate rescue is unlikely to be met with a successful recovery. Launch windows for the Moon might be frequent, but weather and other factors don’t make them infinitely available, and the nearest rescue is still three days out.
If you’d like to make a logical, reasoned argument as to why the Moon is so superior, please do. It’d be a refreshing change from your complete lack of actual critical analysis to date.
I’ll go ahead and turn to the video now, and explain why the video you’ve selected is…poorly chosen. The opening to each paragraph will be a time stamp from the video for reference.
0:00 - 2:00 : Well, it was certainly a charming introduction. Except for the part where the minuteman missile was not intended to deliver a payload to, you know, survive. Oh, and that part where NASA didn’t even believe it possible to economically land the first stage for reuse. The attack on Musk and those who are interested in his ideas is entertaining, at best, but the strawmen built and torn back down are a poor effort at actual reasoning.
2:00 : While undoubtedly facetious, his bringing up companies that deliver products not considering rockets as a viable means of transport is forgetting a few minor details. Minor like: cost per unit of delivery. Minor like: the technology only began to exist a few years ago. Minor like: it’s not important to ship non-perishable goods quickly, but more important to ship them cheaply.
2:15 : NASA, Russia, and China all wrote the idea of a reusable first stage off as impractical many years ago, and only recently began revisiting the idea, largely because of SpaceX’s success.
3:00 : Oh no, a digital simulation! The horror! Imagine, using a rendering of a concept to provide visuals to someone who has never seen into your mind before! It must be a sign he’s a liar! If only digital renders could be used legitimately!
3:30 : Yes, a fully fueled rocket is potentially dangerous. So dangerous in fact, NASA only let people observe rocket launches from dozens of miles awa…oh. Three miles away? With nothing between me and that oh-so-dangerous rocket? I’m pretty sure I’ve even been to Cape Canaveral for the Shuttle launches because I grew up in Florida, and my Dad and I love space travel. I’m sure that shaving twelve hours off a flight could not possibly be worth a drive that numbers tens of miles though, right? Right? Anybody? Furthermore, his analysis is dishonest. While the rocket might contain enough energy to equal the number of bombs used to destroy a city in WW2, explosions do not scale linearly. Furthermore, a rocket is only fully fueled at launch: when landing, it’s as close to empty as you can push it on purpose. Furthermore, manned rocket missions for SpaceX (for NASA, anyway) have systems in place that permit the crewed portion on the vessel to safely escape any potential mishap at Max Q, so the passengers are safe at all times from launch to landing. Furthermore, a BFR would not be fully fueled for an Earth-to-Earth trip: that much fuel would be able to get to the Moon and back, why would you waste that much potential cargo capacity on fuel you won’t burn? Uhm, uh, no. Regarding the noise, again, I’m quite certain that a drive of a few dozen miles (which could even be included in the ticket price for the trip!) is still far more convenient than 12 extra hours of flight. Clearly, we’re not going to be launching these rockets from downtown Manhattan, so…why are you overlaying the explosion radius (of a dishonestly larger explosion) on a site we wouldn’t launch from? Why are you using video from an early failed launch, of a design that clearly would never be used for this sort of trip, as evidence? Seriously, we know the current rocket tech is not adequate for this purpose.
6:30 : You’re complaining…about a boat. And the loading time from boat to rocket. You’re complaining about a two hour pre-loading time in a world where you have to show up to airports two hours before boarding time, with half an hour beyond that for settling in and taxiing to the runway? Even if we assume two hours at the start and finish and an hour flight, that’s still only five hours for an around the world flight. London to New York is six hours by conventional airplane, and that’s not including the check-in times for a MUCH shorter flight.
~7:30 : Again, the maximum fuel capacity would not be the launch fuel capacity for an Earth-to-Earth flight. Why is he not grasping this extraordinarily simple concept?
~8:30 : Ah…he seems to be under the impression that every person on earth is petrified that their rocket will explode and kill them. I’m quite certain I can find a list or two of people who not only disagree with this, but disagree with it on technology that is far inferior to anything that would be used for this purpose. Also, he seems to be under the impression that the current statistics on rocket survivability are applicable to future technology. This is funny, of course, because his video shows a chart demonstrating airplane safety improving over time, much like commercial rocketry would. He then goes on say rockets are intrinsically unsafe, but uses the Shuttle as his demonstration: the Falcon 9 has a module that can escape (as mentioned above) at Max Q, the most inescapable time of a rocket launch. Are we sure he’s utilizing all the logic available to him for this part of the video? Furthermore, if the fuel cost is “only” $200,000, and the rocket is as close to 100% reusable as possible, I’m pretty sure the cost per ticket is not going to the $1,000,000 he suggests it will be. I mean, math is hard, but it seems pretty simple to me in this particular situation.
11:00 : His argument is that making a rocket reusable reduces its payload. While true, I fail to understand what his point is: we’re not shooting for geostationary orbit, we’re shooting for intercontinental travel. I think I’m starting to get a bit repetitious here, but it requires far less fuel than traveling out into space. Again, not sure why he fails to comprehend this extraordinarily simple concept.
12:00 : Says he wants to see space. Says he’d rather take a plane. Ah…forgive me for being unsure, but unless I’m missing some detail, I don’t think those two goals are compatible?
13:15 : He says it costs $10,000 per kg to put something into LEO. While showing a bit of text that says the Falcon 9 costs $2,200 per kg to put things into orbit. Uh…is he just outright stupid? I feel like we’re reaching levels of stupid not seen in a very long time. If you’re going to do some economic analysis, at least provide the evidence that supports your analysis, and not something contrary to it. He then says we only need half of the energy, so that number falls to $1,100 per kg using existing technology at existing technology prices. I mean, we’re already at 10% of his quoted price of $500,000, which is a number I don’t even fully trust given his current failure at demonstrating mathematical skills.
~14:00 : You’re going to use Virgin Galactic’s technology to try and demonstrate SpaceX’s idea? I mean, I’m pretty sure V.G.'s price is not at-cost to the consumer, I’m pretty sure it’s instead intended to raise funds for other projects, but even if we ignore that…seriously?
14:45: You’re not going to fly anywhere on earth in the accomodations he showed for 1/100th the price he’s claiming SpaceX would cost. That sort of seating would be FAR more than $5,000 per ticket on any airline I’ve ever seen. Again with the dishonesty.
16:00 : I won’t pretend to have the answers regarding g forces or flight time, but I will point out one basic flaw in his argumentation. For instance, the Shuttle had to bleed FAR more speed than these rockets would need to, so attempting to compare the landing times of the two is, once again, dishonest.
17:00 : Ooooooh, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen someone bring up radiation dosing. It’s funny, because every time I see it I just want to slam my head into the desk in the hopes it somehow gives the other person a concussion. Let’s use the numbers he shows in his video, although even those are (surprise!) dishonest, as the ISS undoubtedly orbits higher than these rockets would bother to go. 20 uSv/h, across a (let’s be generous here!) two hour flight means 40 uSv. Using this handy dandy chart, we see that dosage amounts to…an airplane flight from New York to Los Angeles. That’s…inconvenient, if you were trying to scare the general public by saying flights are radiologically safer than rocket travel.
So…yeah. Please, feel free to contest anything I had to say about the steaming pile of shit that video was, but please make it a logically sound argument. While I do actually read about the EMDrive and Flat Earth Theory often, it’s because I like to actually be informed when I have an opinion, not because I feel an obligation to believe everything I see or read.