An open source space program

The purpose of this site is to simplify the access to space.  How hard could that be?  It’s only rocket science, right?  This project started at a website (http://www.halfbakery.com) and a bunch of wacky ideas that ended up with a challenge called the N-Prize (http://www.n-prize.com) started by Dr. Paul Dear a biologist with the guts to put his own money up to challenge people to do something very hard on a very tight budget. The challenge is for a non-government sponsored group to get a satellite of 19g or less to do 9 orbits or greater above 99km for £999.  This is challenging because reaching orbit has only been accomplished by one private company Space-X and their budget is much higher.

Daedalus was mythical Greek inventor who created wings so that he and his son Icarus could fly and escape from Crete. This seemed like a solid dual metaphor for a Project to simplify the access to space.  For one this will be a DIY guide to flight and two the tale of Icarus, who dies because he failed to follow directions, seems completely in line with my view of dealing with dangerous chemicals and other stuff that could go BOOM.  Now Daedalus is entry #17 in the N-Prize.

Be warned reader, to get to space you will need to apply a large amount of energy to get even the smallest amount of mass into orbit.  To produce this energy we will use explosive chemicals, cryogenic liquids and/or oxidizers so powerful that they can make human flesh flammable.  All possible steps will be taken to minimize risk, but it is left to you to both apply appropriate caution and understand that this task cannot be completely safe so reader beware and for legal reasons I feel I must ask you do not to repeat any of this experiment or even read this website as it may shorten your life or worse.

                Also so there is no confusion, I am not a rocket scientist.  My degree is in physics, but my work experience is mostly in computers as a programmer and doing tech support, so even the pertinent parts of my education have faded in the decades since I left school.  There will be mistakes made in probably every facet of this experiment, but hopefully they will be learning experiences.  What follows is both a work in progress and an accumulation of the research I have done over the last year or so since this crazy idea started rolling around in my head.  Also in keeping with the spirit of the N-Prize and the other demands of my life, the budget of this project will be VERY low.  Every attempt will be made to cut expenses to the bone and beyond, so that if anyone decides on their own and against explicit instructions to repeat this experiment, it will be as inexpensive as possible and open up the path to space to as wide an audience as possible.

               Also this site is not affiliated with Daedalus Aero Inc in Texas, the University of Central Florida's Project: Daedalus, the University of Arizona's Daedalus Astronautics or anyone else.  I may be altering the name of this project for uniqueness as I am only one of many people who think Daedalus is the perfect symbol for spaceflight projects.