Attack of the space junkies

Florida Today published an article Wednesday describing last month’s Moon-Mars Blitz on Capitol Hill. The article is mostly a straightforward account of the lobbying efforts of private citizens, and the uphill battle they face to get funding for the Vision for Space Exploration. However, the article does have a goofy headline, “Space junkies push Congress”: [...]

Manned vs. unmanned (again)

Congressman Nick Smith (R-MI), chairman of the research subcommittee of the House Science Committee, made some interesting comments on the benefits of manned versus unmanned spaceflight in a commentary for the fairly obscure Truth News web site. Rep. Smith talks about the costs of the shuttle, station, and even Apollo programs, and concludes, “These projects [...]

Seeking in-depth space policy commentary

The online publication The Washington Dispatch has an opinion piece by Mark Whittington on John Kerry’s space policy views. Regular readers of this blog will find little new here: there is discussion of Kerry’s Senate voting record on the space station project, his lukewarm endorsement of NASA (but not the Bush exploration program), and, of [...]

The Space CHASE Act

[The combination of the August doldrums as well as being on travel this week has contributed to the lack of postings. My apologies.]

The results of the compromise on HR 3752 are now available in the form of S.2772, the Space Commercial Human Ascent Serving Expeditions (CHASE) Act. This is a new bill that, presumably, [...]

Hubble vs. shuttle

A UPI article published late Thursday argued that the growing costs of returning the shuttle to flight will make it difficult, it not impossible, for NASA to afford any kind of shuttle or robotic Hubble servicing mission without, perhaps, sacrificing money from the exploration plan:

…if NASA does decide to send a shuttle to the [...]

Space nuclear roundtable, behind closed doors

The AIAA is hosting a Space Nuclear Power & Propulsion Roundtable next week in Washington (there is some confusion whether the event is on Tuesday the 10th or Friday the 13th). The date, though, is a moot point for most: the roundtable is a closed session, open only to participants and other invited guests. The [...]

Shuttle cost increases and Congress

The Washington Post reported Wednesday that the cost of returning the space shuttle fleet to flight is going up, perhaps as much as $900 million over what was originally expected. Those cost increases could affect other, unspecified NASA programs as the agency seeks additional funding within the agency before asking Congress for more. That turn [...]

Book reviews and commentary on the vision

Over at The Space Review this week there are a few articles on space policy topics. I have a book review of New Moon Rising, the behind-the-scenes account of the development of the new exploration policy. It’s an interesting book, but is marred to some degree by some production issues, such as poor editing. In [...]

John Young and President Bush

In a letter to the editor in Monday’s Houston Chronicle, astronaut John Young mentions that he was among the Apollo veterans that met with President Bush at the White House last month. (Earlier reports had suggested that only the Apollo 11 crew met with the President.) Young said that Bush, in private, continued to strongly [...]

The exploration vision, now on sale

A number of press accounts have erroneously reported that the Vision for Space Exploration will cost on the order of $1 trillion. In a recent editorial, the editors of the Berkshire (MA) Eagle have apparently decided to discount the alleged price of the plan:

The program could cost as much as $800 billion at a [...]