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    Friday, August 14, 2009

    Outlook Bleak for NASA

    The Augustine Panel, commissioned to look at our manned space flight options given current and slightly expanded budget options, has determined that there are "no good options for continuing human exploration of space within the constraints set by the Obama administration's fiscal 2010 budget plan for NASA," according to this Aviation Week article.  There is no way, under the current budget, that we will be able to retire the shuttle, shut down the ISS by 2016, and develop the Ares I/Orion and get to the moon by 2020.  No way.  Sad.
    However, with an increase of $3B/year (now, that's a stimulus I could get behind!), we could get to the moon by 2025, according to subcommittee chair Sally Ride.
    There are some who say it is not a conservative ideal to explore space, and I would say they are ideologically right.  However, inasmuch as it provides benefits to your defense technologies, a nationally funded space program can survive the scrutiny of conservatives. In the Age of Obama, where money is thrown around like rice at a wedding, I'd much rather see an additional $60B spent on returning to the moon and goign to Mars than on whatever social program Obama has it earmarked.

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