Dale confirmation hearing

In the event you have not previous read about this, the Senate Commerce Committee will be holding a confirmation hearing Tuesday morning at 10 am to review the nomination of Shana Dale as deputy administrator of NASA. The hearing, in Dirksen 562, will be webcast. I won’t be able to watch the hearing, but this should be a fairly routine event in any case; if you do watch the hearing and hear something interesting, please post a comment.

6 comments to Dale confirmation hearing

  • Regarding Anthony Kendall’s excellent article, I’m glad to see I’m not the only one shouting into the automated wilderness. . . .

    However, in 2003 dollars, the total cost of all NASA-led surface-landing Mars missions to date is somewhere near $4.2 billion.

    It was my understanding that Viking alone cost something like $5 billion in current-year dollars (circa $1 billion at the time). Am I wrong?

    — Donald

  • Donald,

    How does the above relate to the Dale hearings?

  • It doesn’t. However, contrary to usual practice, Jeff did not start a thread dealing with the new issue of The Space Review, so if I was going to comment on it here was where it had to be.

    — Donald

  • David Davenport

    Donald, one can play all sorts of games comparing the buying power of present dollars to the value of the dollar in some past year.

    For example, Mr. Rutan’s SS1 project is reported to have cost $25M. I could go find twenty five houses and lots that sold for about $1M each this year, real estate that orginally sold for less than $100K each when new in 1961. Same lots, pretty much the same house. Then I can deduce that Spaceship One cost about $250K in 1961 dollars, cheaper even than X-15, so there.

    Conversely, using the same comparative buying power logic, one could make Saturn/Apollo seem ruinously expensive.

    I suppose the same goes for Viking. What is your point, really?

    Let me remind you, buddy, that John Henry tried and tried, but he died short of the steam drill.

  • My point was, and still is, that I believe Mr. Kendall drastically underestimated what NASA has spent on automated Mars missions. If so, that makes his arguments that much stronger.

    — Donald

  • X-15 was $300 million in 1961 dollars so it is still more expensive than SS1 by a factor of ten. Inflation makes it a factor of 30.