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Where we are now

By Patrick Van Roy On January 28th, 2020

House legislators want to hand NASA’s human spaceflight program over to Boeing

 

This worries me…..

On Friday evening, a US House of Representatives committee released H.R. 5666, an authorization act for NASA. Such bills are not required for an agency to function, and they do not directly provide funding—that comes from the appropriations committees in the House and Senate. Authorization bills provide a “sense” of Congress, however and indicate what legislators will be willing to fund in the coming years.

The big-picture takeaway from the bipartisan legislation is that it rejects the Artemis Program put forth by the Trump White House, which established the Moon as a cornerstone of human exploration for the next decade or two and as a place for NASA astronauts to learn the skills needed to expand toward Mars in the late 2030s and 2040s. Instead, the House advocates for a “flags-and-footprints” strategy whereby astronauts make a few short visits to the Moon beginning in 2028 and then depart for a Mars orbit mission by 2033.

 

Space policy

 

Whatever one might think about NASA’s Artemis Program to land humans on the Moon by 2024, it attempted to learn from decades of space policy failure. Artemis set a near-term target, 2024, for a human return to the Moon that provided some urgency for NASA to get moving. It also sought to develop a “sustainable” path with meaningful activities on the surface of the Moon, including polar landings, efforts to tap lunar resources (the House bill specifically prohibits this), and establishment of a base.

Moreover, Artemis recognized that spaceflight has changed in 50 years. The Artemis program included new players in the industry, such as SpaceX and Blue Origin, as well as up-and-coming companies like Maxar, along with the established aerospace giants like Boeing and Lockheed Martin. NASA’s plans, essentially, invited everyone to the table. Over time, the companies that provided the most reliable services at the lowest costs were likely to get more contracts.

These Politicians don’t represent the will of the people, and spit in the face of our future.

3 Responses to “Where we are now”

  1. Nothing should be handed over to Boeing. The 737 Max debacle has shown a very poorly managed company. Until it is fixed no contracts should go to Boeing.

  2. Turnip is too busy with space police to worry about space

  3. no Artemis was his push, the lobbyist are hijacking a congress all to eager to screw with anything Trump supports plus they get pocket money from boeing.

    They don’t care nor understand how important the competition is in mankind’s next steps.