Commercial Crew Problems

This is why the rumors of delay to 2019. But this is crazy:

The final GAO report also will to delve into unrelated issues that threaten to delay initial launches of manned capsules by SpaceX and rival Boeing Co. Echoing conclusions of other studies by outside experts, GAO investigators have determined that both companies are likely to miss a 2018 deadline to start regular missions ferrying astronauts to the international space station.

According to industry officials familiar with the draft report, the GAO also pinpointed frequent modifications of Falcon 9 designs as a potential source of delays in obtaining NASA certification of the booster.

For Boeing, these officials said, GAO investigators—among other items—raised questions about the status of tests to determine the reliability of its parachute systems designed to help returning manned capsules land safely.

The GAO also has determined that both companies face an uphill struggle to meet NASA’s statistical goal of no more than one projected astronaut fatality in 270 flights, industry officials said.

The 1/270 requirement is completely arbitrary, and they will never know whether or not they’ve met it. Also, pretty sure that’s an LOC (loss of crew) number, not “astronaut fatality.” A career-ending injury would count, too.

[Update a while later]

SpaceX says they have a plan to fix the turbine-blade issue. It hasn’t caused any problem to date, but as Fernholz says, if you’re going to reuse engines, you can’t have blade deterioration.

Ron Wyden

Why he must resign:

The shocking revelation: Senator Wyden has been, for more than a decade, a willing accomplice to a plot to undermine the American political order and to overthrow the Constitution by infiltrating agents of radicalism into the highest reaches of the federal judiciary.

The nefariousness of this undertaking cannot be overstated. The monsters advanced to positions of power with Senator Wyden’s assistance include dangerous extremists whose ideology “represents a breathtaking retreat from the notion that Americans have fundamental Constitutional rights.” His agents take “a very dangerous view to our liberty” that “harkens back to the days when politicians restricted a people’s rights on a whim.”

Wyden’s anti-constitutional conspiracy “is couched in the sort of jurisprudence that justified the horrific oppression of one group after another in our first two centuries.”

This is cruel, but fair.

[Update a couple minutes later]

Former Obama official: “Why liberals should back Neil Gorsuch.”

[Update a while later]

Orrin Hatch on senate Democrats: “I don’t care what they want at this point.”

Neither do I.

[Update Thursday morning]

If you want to get non-hysterical takes on Gorsuch, the Volokh Conspiracy is your go-to place.

Biting Commentary about Infinity…and Beyond!

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