- The Las Cruces Sun-News things Virigin Galatic, Spaceport America, and private space in New Mexico in general is a good thing for everyone.
- Three travel agencies in Florida have been authorized to sell seats on Virigin Galatic. WSFL has the story with cool shots of VSS Enterprise.
- NASA Administrator Charles Bolden is a moron. He says that in order to survive political wrangling, they must be affordable, sustainable and realistic. In other words they must be things we have done. To survive politics space travel must be new and exciting and commercial.
- Rick Homans, former director of Spaceport America, says that the new Governor, Susana Martinez, must declare her support or the project may slow or stop in its tracks.
- It only took 40 years, but NASA proved the Moon has a core using data from Apollo.
- NASA is currently stuck in bureaucratic hell, waiting on the congress and the president to figure out the budget. They have found $40 million more for the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program since the beginning of the fiscal year (October).
- It is an odd felling, but I am proud that commercial space tourism has become mainstream enough to be actively attacked my environmentalists.
prag·ma·tism (prgm-tzm) n. A way of approaching situations or solving problems that emphasizes practical applications and consequences.
Monday, January 10, 2011
Wednesday, January 05, 2011
- NASA researchers have found that they can cut the weight of some components by 20% and still achieve safety goals.
- New Mexico's new governor, Rep Susana Martinez, is auditing Spaceport America to make sure tax dollars are spent the right way.
- Long term space flight may impact your ability to have children.
- India is building their own GPS type system, the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS).
- The James Webb Telescope may be pushed back 8 years due to cost over runs. The current launch date is now 2022.
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
[ULA Chief Operating Officer Dan Collins] urged the government not to force a competitive environment on an industry that may be ill suited to it.For some odd reason I thought competition was the natural state of the market until the government starting screwing with it. They acknowledged that SpaceX is really there only current competition due to ITAR.
"I'm not saying no to competition, I'm just urging us to be judicious in its use," Collins said. "Our success will be judged not on how widely we used the tool of competition, but ... on how wisely we used the tool of competition."
"The Air Force has erected enormous barriers to entry at least in the launch market, and made it really very difficult to get in," Musk said. "It's sort of strange that we have over 30 missions on contract for Falcon 9 — which is a vehicle that has more capability than the Delta 4 Medium — but not one of those is with the Air Force. Why is that?"So Mr Collins, no need to worry. The government isn't going to let, um I mean force any competition on you.
- NASA announced they had purchased data packages for $500,000 from three (3) Google Lunar X-Prize contestants: Astrobotic Technology Inc (Pittsburgh, Pa., USA), Moon Express Inc. (Mountain View, Calif., USA) and the Rocket City Space Pioneers (Huntsville, Ala., USA).
- The Universe lets us know once again, we really have no clue what is going on: Vast Solar Eruption Shocks NASA and Raises Doubts on Sun Theory
Monday, January 03, 2011
- Canada is looking to build and launch their own rocket. To be honest, I understand their desire to reach an important space milestone, but I think they would be better served by building the infrastructure for launches and buying launches from private companies, such as Boeing and SpaceX. Of course ITAR is always an issue...
- NASA's Mars rover Spirit is still not talking.
- Some band I've never heard of wants to play in space aboard Virgin Galactic.
- NPR has a roundup of NASA's plans for manned space.
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Robert Block at the Orlando Sentinel thinks SpaceX's ability to launch a cheese-manned capsule into orbit and recover it for $800 million is "raising some serious questions about NASA." Meanwhile, NASA is spending $500 million in six months on a program that no longer exists.
Joel Levine, a researcher at NASA Langley has just published a book called The Human Mission to Mars: Colonizing the Red Planet. I haven't read it yet, but as soon as I can get it I will post a review.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Due to the insanity that is the United States Federal Government, The Constellation program has been cut but NASA is still forced by congress to spend $500 million on the dead Ares 1 rocket through March.
Constellation is the umbrella program that includes the Ares I, the rocket NASA has been building to replace the space shuttle as means of transport to and from the International Space Station, as well as other spacecraft that would have been capable of performing a variety of missions. President Obama cancelled Constellation last year, but thanks to congressional delays and inaction, the program simply won't die -- and it's costing big bucks.
This is mostly related to the fact that congress can't get a budget passed. Hopefully the next congress can get something together. In a world of deficit hawks and tea parties, however, this seems insane. This is why the government shouldn't be doing so much, they suck at most things.
Clark Lindsey has his list of the top space related news of 2010.
3. Bigelow Aerospace signed a deal with Boeing (of all people) to launch space stations into orbit. Apparently, six countries are interested in leasing their very own space station.