Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Phasing Out NASA's Shuttle Program Costs US More $$$

That's what happens when you cut the competition - the price goes up.
With the United States phasing out the shuttle program, the new way for U.S. astronauts to get to the International Space Station will be to catch a ride with the Russians, and NASA's existing contract for that transport priced each rocket ride at just under $56 million.

Now, Russia is hiking the price for each rocket ride to nearly $63 million in 2014. The contract extension with the Russian Space Agency totals $753 million, which covers trips for a dozen astronauts from 2014 through 2016.

Private American space companies should take over where NASA left off.

If indeed the NASA shuttle program was riskier due to "aging spacecraft" then it's high time we research and develop a new program. Longer range re-usable shuttles with better fuel capacity would be a good start.... then again our schools aren't turning out the engineers and scientists needed for these endeavors are they now?

Honestly, the space program has delivered so much technology to us - and we have benefited so much from our space exploration, that it is really sad to see American space travel seemingly at the mercy of other countries.

It seems to me we are losing our competitive edge in space.
That is a tragedy.
And an expensive one at that.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

s a young boy I used to beam with pride whenever the astronauts executed a mission, it was so awe-inspiring! Now the whole thing has been tossed in the garbage can, and NASA is now the agency to make Muslims feel good about themselves or some such thing. Tragic and abominable. It makes me sick, as does this whole loser presidency.

Anonymous said...

Two points: 1)I think it's time to eliminate NASA. They spend half their budget on the phony global warming fraud. We aren't going to Mars. We are going bankrupt can we really afford the billions on this program.
2)The so-called "benefits" from the space program are exaggarated. Most of them would have happened anyway and the rest are more hype then benefit.
Cut spending!!!

Anonymous said...

Good Golly! You said "investment"; surely you must have meant "spending." The government must not, cannot "invest," or so your blog habitually insists. And I've taken note: I now consider my mortgage, my contribution to my IRA, my children's college accounts all to be "spending."

Human space travel is ludicrous; the benefits of the billions spent on the shuttle program are negligible. You really don't think there are more profitable places for the government to invest (no sarcasm this time)?

Judy Aron said...

I cannot take any person who states: "Human space travel is ludicrous" to be credible or intelligent.

Wow - I wonder what J F Kennedy would have thought of your comment.

Thank heaven we have private enterprise to pick up the slack of the Obama administration as it continues to dismantle all that is great about this country... including its space program.

Judy Aron said...

.. and yes I did change the wording.. it's much more than an investment - it is exploration... and one that we greatly benefited from, one that pushed kids to want to be engineers, one that excited us and gave us national pride, one that helped encourage competition and enterprise.

And by the way "anonymous" - you have rightly stated that your mortgage, your contribution to your IRA, and to your children's college accounts are "spending" - for that is what it is.
It won't matter much as an investment because your dollars will all be worth crap pretty soon.
Don't forget to send a thank you note to Obama and Bernanke
for that.

Anonymous said...

Kennedy instituted a massive government effort that, while excellent propaganda, had minimal economic and virtually no scientific benefit. Meanwhile, Hubble, Voyager, Mars Rover and countless others have brought incredible knowledge. Just this week our probe reached Mercury. Space exploration is a terribly important government endeavor, and only government can support the basic research that deep space investigation amounts to. As that other dude said, manned space travel is ... ludicrous.

And other investments aside, if the dollar inflates like you predict, that mortgage will be a bargain. Tell you what, give me all your worthless long term investments, and keep your gold for the impending apocalypse.

Cheers.

You're blog's great, by the way.

Judy Aron said...

Minimal economic and virtually no scientific benefit? You can't be serious.
How many companies (like Hamilton Standard - Boeing - Raytheon) prospered from this? How many inventions were spawned and brought to the general public by the space program? (Hint: lots... )

You honestly believe only the government can fund such an endeavor? I truly beg to differ.. look at what Virgin has already done regarding space travel. There is plenty of private money that could be used to explore space..the fact that government took control of it mostly because it was a matter of national security..and could be used militarily.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_private_spaceflight_companies

http://www.gregsopinion.com/archives/009673.html