Still minding the gap

Congressman Dave Weldon (R-FL) held a series of town-hall-style meetings Wednesday for workers at the Kennedy Space Center. While the meetings themselves were closed to all but space center employees, Weldon did speak with reporters between the meetings and, according to accounts by Florida Today and the Orlando Sentinel, reiterated his desire to reduce the [...]

House sets hearing on astronaut health issues

The House Science and Technology Committee has firmed up plans for a hearing on “NASA’s Astronaut Health Care System-Results of an Independent Review”. The hearing is scheduled for Thursday, September 6th at 10 am. The first panel will feature NASA officials (Bryan O’Connor, Ellen Ochoa, and Richard Williams, the agency’s chief health and medical officer) [...]

NASA gets blamed for everything

An editorial in the Houston Chronicle itemizes the list of problems that NASA has suffered so far this year. And while NASA might not be having an annus horribilis this year, it has suffered its share of setbacks, embarrassments, and tragedies, from allegations of intoxicated astronauts to sabotaged computers. The Chronicle, though, casts its net [...]

Hurricanes, satellites, NASA’s proper Earth sciences role

Wednesday’s Los Angeles Times featured an op-ed by Paul Thornton, a researcher for the paper’s editorial page, decrying the state of NASA’s Earth sciences program. Thornton finds a topical hook for his piece: the return of the space shuttle Endeavour one day early because of Hurricane Dean, which was monitored by, among other satellites, the [...]

From FAA to AIA

The Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) announced yesterday that outgoing FAA administrator Marion Blakey will become the president and CEO of the AIA in November, two months after Blakey leaves the FAA. The AIA announced earlier this year that its current president and CEO, John W. Douglass, would retire at the end of the year; he [...]

How to build a political consensus for space

In this week’s issue of The Space Review, Frank Sietzen examines the lack of presidential attention to the Vision and what’s needed to build bipartisan support for the effort. On the former, Sietzen is blunt:

The Vision for Space Exploration was established at a time of record deficits, when America was conducting one war against [...]

Ignorance of the Vision

A couple of anecdotes, courtesy of the wild, wacky blogosphere, that suggest that, more than three and a half years after President Bush formally announced the Vision for Space Exploration, a lot of Americans know little, if anything, about it:

The first case is a post by Patrick Joubert Conlon, a gentleman in Oregon who [...]

Calvert pressing ahead on sponsorship bill

This week’s issue of Space News features an op-ed (not available online) by Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) where he provides an update on his plans to give NASA a new funding mechanism. At the National Space Symposium in Colorado in April, Calvert said he was planning legislation to allow NASA to, in effect, sell advertising [...]

What Bruce Gagnon and Dana Rohrabacher have in common

This week’s shuttle launch comes at a time when NASA is suffering from a raft of bad press, from allegations of intoxicated astronauts to reports of sabotaged computers, an article in today’s Palm Beach Post reminds us. And that means people of widely (and we do mean widely) varying ideologies are looking at NASA and [...]

There must be a cheaper way to see a launch

Louisiana governor Kathleen Blanco will attend Wednesday evening’s launch of the space shuttle Endeavour at the invitation of NASA administrator Mike Griffin. The invitation is designed “to thank the governor for the state’s plans to spend $20 million on improvements at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in eastern New Orleans,” the AP reported. State legislators approved [...]