NASA IG to Congress: stop making us waste money

In an unusual move, NASA’s Inspector General (IG) has sent letters to key members of Congress, requesting that they take “immediate action” to remove legislative language that the IG concludes is wasting hundreds of millions of dollars. In letters to the chair and ranking member of the Senate Commerce Committee and the chair and ranking [...]

Sen. Hutchison won’t run for reelection in 2012

One of the leading voices on space issues in the Senate will be leaving. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison announced today that she has decided not to run for reelection in 2012. She said in the announcement that she would not leave before the end of her current term, but was making the announcement now, nearly [...]

Senate pushes back on NASA HLV report

The full report NASA submitted to Congress this week on development of the Space Launch System heavy-lift rocket and Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle spacecraft is now available online. The introduction of the report had this to say about the schedule and cost of developing the heavy-lifter included in the authorization act (emphasis added):

Guidance from [...]

A heavy-lift design – with a catch

There’s good news and bad news for advocates of heavy-lift launch vehicles today. The good news is that NASA has come up with a proposed HLV concept that it has delivered to Congress, Space News reports. That proposal was required by a provision in section 309 of the NASA authorization act, which requires NASA to [...]

Bill Nelson and a third shuttle mission

In comments yesterday, Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) suggested that NASA might have to forego the additional shuttle mission included in the NASA authorization bill because of problems with the external tank currently mated to the shuttle Discovery. “They do have an extra tank, because they always have that third shuttle flight that we have authorized [...]

More Giffords statements

From AIAA president Mark J. Lewis:

On behalf of the members and staff of AIAA, I condemn today’s senseless tragedy, and express our collective thoughts and prayers for the recovery of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Our thoughts are also with Congresswoman Giffords’ husband, NASA astronaut Capt. Mark Kelly, United States Navy, and her parents, Spencer [...]

More reaction to the Giffords shooting

From the Coalition for Space Exploration:

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Rep. Giffords and her family as they begin the road to recovery,” said Glenn Mahone, chairman of the Coalition. “We also extend our deepest condolences to those who lost loved ones in this tragic occurrence and to the other victims and their [...]

Rep. Giffords shot in Tucson

Gabrielle Giffords speaks at the SpaceVision 2009 conference in Tucson in November 2009 with her husband, NASA astronaut Mark Kelly.

Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) was shot this morning outside a grocery store in Tucson, according to multiple media reports. Giffords was hosting an event outside the store when she and a number of [...]

Briefs: Bolden talks, Homans walks

NASA administrator Charles Bolden spoke this week at the AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting in Orlando (the first speech by the administrator whose prepared text was posted on the NASA web site since a statement about the rescue of Chilean miners in mid-October). Much of Bolden’s speech was looking back at the shuttle program, but he [...]

Authorizers versus appropriators

The 112th Congress started yesterday, which means big changes in the House as Republicans take power after four years of Democratic control. The new Republican leadership has already made its stamp on the science committee, which, according to its web site, is now known as the Committee on Science, Space and Technology; it had previously [...]