prag·ma·tism (prgm-tzm) n. A way of approaching situations or solving problems that emphasizes practical applications and consequences.
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
The Russian Soyuz rocket launched American, Russian, and Japanese astronauts into space yesterday. These three new astronauts will spend Christmas on the International Space Station joining American Jeff Williams and Russian Maxim Surayev.
Former astronaut Edward Lu says NASA should take a lesson from Silicon Valley and Russia and build smaller highly reliable rockets, like the Soyuz, and launch them as fast as new ideas in the technology world.
The European Union has plans for a Mars sample return mission and manned launches over the next decade. However, it is difficult to see how they are going to increase the spending on space the required 50% given the current budget deficits in Europe.
According to John Kelly, the rest of the World is talking a good talk about space, but in reality they are waiting on the US, and more specifically the Obama administration, to decide what we are going to do in space over the next ten years.
The Obama administration, in one of its few nods to private industry, is asking NASA to fund private companies on the order of $3.5 billion to develop private transport to orbit. It is rumored that they may add $1 billion to NASA's budget begging in October of 2010.