Political Commentary, Space What Next For NASA? October 13, 2010 Rand Simberg 7 Comments Justin Kugler has a good analysis of the NASA Authorization bill over at Open NASA.
7 thoughts on “What Next For NASA?”
I wonder how somebody could read this…
First, the Act states that the long-term goal of NASA’s human space flight and exploration efforts is to establish and expand a permanent human presence beyond Low Earth Orbit and to involve our international partners where it is practical to do so.
…and not realize it means a moon base.
Hmmm. “120 days from the enactment of the Act, NASA is required to present to Congress an assessment of any effort to expand or strengthen international collaboration on the ISS and any efforts in defining near-term cis-lunar missions.”
I’m guessing this might have something to do with Bolden’s many travels and why some Congressmen are unhappy about his trip to China.
Also, ” the Act requires NASA commission the National Academies in 2012 conduct a review of the “goals, core capabilities, and direction of human space flight.” ”
Just what we needed, another Augustine commission.
Ken, the L5 Society would no doubt challenge your assumption that “beyond LEO” must equal “moon base.” 🙂
Thanks for the link, Rand. Now that the ProOrbis report on the National Laboratory NPO concept is in the public domain, I’m thinking about doing a companion post specifically on the ISS language in the Act.
With regards to BEO exploration, I would tend to agree with Brock, Ken. Robotic lunar prospecting for exploration outposts at the EML points would still satisfy the language in the Authorization Act.
Also, Mike, my understanding is that this is intended to be more akin to the Science Mission Directorate’s Decadal Survey and give the human space flight program some relevancy beyond the political cycle. It is the first in what will be periodic assessments of the efficacy and capability of the HSF program.
I’m sure they would Brock. That’s the difference between me and most groups. They want Lagrange and I want mars, but I see the reality that it’s going to be moon base first.
They want Lagrange and I want mars
I think it is closer to the truth to say that they see starting with Lagrange points as the most promising way to end up at Mars eventually.
Wasn’t L5 originally about putting an O’Neal colony there? In any case, it’s not a big distraction and can be useful. We’ll do some useful things on the moon, but it will have the impact of slowing our growth relative to other options.
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