Briefs: Bolden, Marquez, and milspace

In what Aviation Week understandably termed a “rare one-on-one interview”, NASA administrator Charles Bolden suggested he’s slowing down any future cooperation with China and Russia, perhaps to appease some Congressional critics. Bolden said that a visit by Chinese space officials to the US, a reciprocal visit to Bolden’s October trip to China, is not planned [...]

Deficit commission quietly edits a recommendation

Most readers are familiar with a proposal by the co-chairs of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform to cut NASA’s commercial crew development program, saving $1.2 billion a year. That generated criticism in some circles, including a strong response from the Commercial Spaceflight Federation. However, it appears the commission co-chairs (or, more likely, [...]

NASA in Palin’s new book

Earlier this week America by Heart, the latest book by former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, hit store shelves. The book, as it turns out, spends a little over a page talking about space policy—or, more accurately, contrasting the policies of the 1960s with what she considers the diminished horizons of [...]

Would Congress object to an Orion demo flight on an EELV?

Lockheed Martin has gotten some attention this week with a proposal to conduct an unmanned Orion test flight as early as 2013. The test flight, using a Delta 4 Heavy launched from Cape Canaveral, would put the spacecraft into an elliptical orbit; the Orion would later splash down off the California coast. This is not [...]

Briefs: Nelson’s complaints, New York’s fear of Texas

Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) got some attention late last week when he criticized the White House staff on a number of issues, including space. Nelson’s speech came a day after he reportedly “lit into” President Obama in a Senate caucus session. However, Nelson’s NASA-specific complaint, the “misconception that Obama wants to eliminate the manned space [...]

Bolden discusses NASA’s budget, China trip, and blogs he doesn’t read

While NASA administrator Charles Bolden has been putting in his share of appearances, he hasn’t said much, nor made himself available to the media: the last speech by Bolden on NASA’s web site (as opposed to a short statement) is from early September. Space News, though, scored a coup when it obtained a transcript of [...]

Utah members concerned NASA “circumventing the law” on heavy lift

To hear members of Utah’s congressional delegation, the soundtrack on the ninth floor of NASA Headquarters these days is a certain Judas Priest song. “NASA has signaled an interest recently in possibly circumventing the law,” Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) said in a statement after a meeting Thursday with NASA administrator Charles Bolden and deputy administrator [...]

Rohrabacher “in line” to chair science committee?

An article by Bakersfield, California, TV station KGET noted that Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) was among those in attendance last week at the groundbreaking of a new facility at the Mojave Air and Space Port where The Spaceship Company, the Virgin Galactic/Scaled Composites joint venture, will build WhiteKnightTwo aircraft and SpaceShipTwo suborbital spacecraft. Rohrabacher, a [...]

Stadd sentenced to prison

Former NASA chief of staff Courtney Stadd was sentenced Thursday to 41 months in prison on a conspiracy charge. Stadd had entered a guilty plea on the charge in August, stemming from allegations that he had conspired in 2004 and 2005 with NASA deputy chief engineer Liam Sarsfield to direct business to Mississippi State University, [...]

Mollohan: “don’t know” if Congress will approve an appropriations bill

In an accepting an award from the Space Transportation Association during a Capitol Hill event this morning, Rep. Alan Mollohan (D-WV), the outgoing chairman of the Commerce, Justice, and Science (CJS) subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, immediately addressed the one issue on everyone’s minds about NASA’s funding for the coming year. “I don’t know, [...]