Obama to outline NASA/Mars plans in April....

Status
Not open for further replies.
D

docm

Guest
On tax day, of course.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6261NE20100307

Obama to push White House vision for NASA in April

(Reuters) - President Barack Obama will outline his administration's vision for space agency NASA and an eventual trip to Mars during a conference in Florida in April, the White House said on Sunday.

Obama has had to defend his commitment to the space agency in the politically important U.S. state after submitting a budget to Congress that would cancel a program to return U.S. astronauts to the moon.

Obama wants to refocus NASA efforts on technologies to prepare for human missions to other destinations in the solar system.

His budget would spend $6 billion over five years to turn over space transportation to commercial companies as well as billions of dollars on technology development and extending the life of the International Space Station.

"After years of underinvestment in new technology and unrealistic budgeting, the President's plan will unveil an ambitious plan for NASA that sets the agency on a reinvigorated path of space exploration," the White House said in a statement.

It said the investment in new technology would "help us travel from the Earth's cradle to our nearby Solar System neighborhood in a more effective and affordable way, thus laying the foundation to support journeys to the Moon, asteroids, and eventually to Mars."

The White House-sponsored conference will take place on April 15.

"The conference will focus on the goals and strategies in this new vision, the next steps, and the new technologies, new jobs, and new industries it will create," it said. "Conference topics will include the implications of the new strategy for Florida, the nation, and our ultimate activities in space."
>
 
N

neutrino78x

Guest
He should also specify the next target for NASA astronauts, such as an asteroid.

--Brian
 
E

EarthlingX

Guest
neutrino78x":3bcr0669 said:
He should also specify the next target for NASA astronauts, such as an asteroid.

--Brian
Destination is not important, that's a publicity stunt. What is important is capability, and sustainability. No more 'Boots and Flags' crap.
If you have capability, you can go where ever you want. Do you buy a car just for one destination, discard 90% of it at the start, and so on ? Could you drive to work with a such solution ?
 
D

docm

Guest
Which is why we need to start thinking in terms of a re-usable spaceship that can be refurbished in space with additional/replacement mission modules.
 
V

voyager4d

Guest
A successfully launch of Falcon 9, will make this speech so much easier for Obama.
 
R

rockett

Guest
EarthlingX":2ocpijpf said:
neutrino78x":2ocpijpf said:
He should also specify the next target for NASA astronauts, such as an asteroid.

--Brian
Destination is not important, that's a publicity stunt. What is important is capability, and sustainability. No more 'Boots and Flags' crap.
If you have capability, you can go where ever you want. Do you buy a car just for one destination, discard 90% of it at the start, and so on ? Could you drive to work with a such solution ?
Yep, 'Boots and Flags' again:
"Specific participants of the conference and the location weren't announced, though Sen. Bill Nelson said he assumed it would happen at or near Kennedy Space Center.

Nelson said Saturday that the conference is an opportunity for Obama to definitively set a Mars landing as a goal and to establish a timetable to develop a powerful new rocket capable of making flights to Mars or elsewhere beyond low Earth orbit."

http://www.space.com/news/president-obama-space-program-future-ft-100308.html
 
R

rockett

Guest
docm":3pwxmmjf said:
Which is why we need to start thinking in terms of a re-usable spaceship that can be refurbished in space with additional/replacement mission modules.
I agree with you Documentarian. Think there's any chance X33 could be resurrected? The XRS-2200 aerospike engines were pretty far along and showed a lot of promise.
 
S

StarRider1701

Guest
rockett":308qmalk said:
EarthlingX":308qmalk said:
neutrino78x":308qmalk said:
He should also specify the next target for NASA astronauts, such as an asteroid.

--Brian
Destination is not important, that's a publicity stunt. What is important is capability, and sustainability. No more 'Boots and Flags' crap.
If you have capability, you can go where ever you want. Do you buy a car just for one destination, discard 90% of it at the start, and so on ? Could you drive to work with a such solution ?
Yep, 'Boots and Flags' again:
"Specific participants of the conference and the location weren't announced, though Sen. Bill Nelson said he assumed it would happen at or near Kennedy Space Center.

Nelson said Saturday that the conference is an opportunity for Obama to definitively set a Mars landing as a goal and to establish a timetable to develop a powerful new rocket capable of making flights to Mars or elsewhere beyond low Earth orbit."
Dammit, when are these idiot politicians going to figure out that we cannot afford the "Boots and Flags" crap anymore?!? Set a date for a Mars landing - TOTAL STUPIDITY! We need to spend out money building infrastructure in LEO and on the moon, since we now know that we can get a good percentage of our consumables from the lunar regolith. Yeah yeah, hard work isn't glamourus and Mars is. Idiots...
 
D

docm

Guest
rockett":2dnlrhrg said:
I agree with you Documentarian. Think there's any chance X33 could be resurrected? The XRS-2200 aerospike engines were pretty far along and showed a lot of promise.
X-33 isn't what we need for beyond Earth orbit and doesn't meet the spec I laid out. It's a SSTO space taxi in a world where the available, affordable tech is distinctly TSTO. It's also not for use beyond Earth orbit.

Think in terms of 2001's Discovery; a propulsion unit, preferably swappable for different missions, connected to a habitat by way of a longish truss; useful if the propulsion unit has a reactor as distance is one of the best radiation shields (see:inverse square law). Between the truss and habitat have a docking hub where you could park a lander, if needed, and a return capsule.

Much of this is already in development by Bigelow, Ad Astra and others. What we need is for NASA to become more of a systems integrator, using bits and pieces as they become available and encouraging the development of what's missing; say, a megawatt-class space reactor.

NASA's C3PO is a good start, but someone needs to get cracking on a plan with funding appropriate to the task.

StarRider1701's infrastructure would have to be developed as part of the end goal of having a true spacecraft capable of lunar, planetary or BLEO missions.
 
R

rockett

Guest
docm":7fjzte48 said:
Think in terms of 2001's Discovery; a propulsion unit connected to a habitat by way of a longish truss; useful if the propulsion unit has a reactor as distance is one of the best radiation shields (see:inverse square law). Between the truss and habitat have a docking hub where you could park a lander, if needed, and a return capsule.

Much of this is already in development by Bigelow, Ad Astra and others. What we need is for NASA to become more of a systems integrator, using bits and pieces as they become available and encouraging the deveolpment of what's missing; say, a 10-15 MWe space reactor.

NASA's C3PO is a good start, but someone needs to get funding appropriate to the task.
I agree with you. What about Buzz Aldrin's XM proposal he pitched to the Augustine commission?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/buzz-aldrin/spaceships-worthy-of-the_b_473452.html

It would be a start anyway.

And I found this neat little reactor (25 MW) being manufactured in New Mexico for private use:
http://nextbigfuture.com/2007/11/nuclear-battery-can-be-used-to-help.html
 
D

docm

Guest
That is the Hyperion reactor. It's been discussed before here and has promise.
 
R

rcsplinters

Guest
I'm looking forward to hearing his remarks, actually. While I have no expectation that we'll hear anything like a reasonable plan, I do think we might gain some insight as to his thought processes. The administration's budget essentially left no room (read resources) for human space flight in the current budget in any future, save slush money for a infant commercial market. Now we are to be advised how we are going to Mars with no budget using technologies that we supposedly need to create. The most interesting piece will be how this is better than the plan in hand that just needed funding. It should be an interesting and revealing diatribe.
 
B

bushwhacker

Guest
http://nextbigfuture.com/2007/11/nuclea ... -help.html

did anyone read the last comment posted in that story..?
guy states that we now have solar cells that collect dark energy so we can still make power when the suns not shining :lol:

"There are solar cells now available that can collect dark energy so that even at night we can have electricity. "
""
 
R

rockett

Guest
bushwhacker":15a8opu9 said:
http://nextbigfuture.com/2007/11/nuclear-battery-can-be-used-to-help.html

did anyone read the last comment posted in that story..?
guy states that we now have solar cells that collect dark energy so we can still make power when the suns not shining :lol:

"There are solar cells now available that can collect dark energy so that even at night we can have electricity. "
""
I HOPE he was being sarcastic :lol:
 
P

phaze

Guest
docm":vl9igoy9 said:
Which is why we need to start thinking in terms of a re-usable spaceship that can be refurbished in space with additional/replacement mission modules.
The biggest issue would be propulsion technology?
 
G

Gravity_Ray

Guest
rcsplinters":23fh1gwl said:
I'm looking forward to hearing his remarks, actually. While I have no expectation that we'll hear anything like a reasonable plan, I do think we might gain some insight as to his thought processes. The administration's budget essentially left no room (read resources) for human space flight in the current budget in any future, save slush money for a infant commercial market. Now we are to be advised how we are going to Mars with no budget using technologies that we supposedly need to create. The most interesting piece will be how this is better than the plan in hand that just needed funding. It should be an interesting and revealing diatribe.
The word "reasonable", "Congress", and "the administration" cannot be used in the same sentence with NASA or a space flight plan. It’s an oxymoron. I have been watching the public space flight plan for the last 40 years and it isn’t going any place. The only hope our space flight plans may have lies with the private industry, and that may or may not work.
 
R

rockett

Guest
Gravity_Ray":123fb4wy said:
The word "reasonable", "Congress", and "the administration" cannot be used in the same sentence with NASA or a space flight plan. It’s an oxymoron. I have been watching the public space flight plan for the last 40 years and it isn’t going any place. The only hope our space flight plans may have lies with the private industry, and that may or may not work.
Sadly, Gravity_Ray, I have to agree with you. I was told once by a Japanese scientist that they and Europe had no confidence in America's government following through with ANY long term, big commitment, science projects. He pointed out that the Europeans for instance fund a big initiative for the life of the project. Our's often came and went with elections, in particular changes of Administrations. I have seen that he was indeed correct, this remark was made when I was working the Super Conducting Super Collider...
 
N

neutrino78x

Guest
rockett":35ulxagl said:
Sadly, Gravity_Ray, I have to agree with you. I was told once by a Japanese scientist that they and Europe had no confidence in America's government following through with ANY long term, big commitment, science projects.
Ah, but manned space should never be "a science project". For example, I want to go to Mars to colonize it. Not just learn scientific facts, but establish a presence of mankind there. Have babies born there. Have people live their whole lives there. Whole separate countries on Mars.

As far as asteroids, NASA astronauts should go there mainly to find out how to deflect an asteroid. Make sure we have the technology to land men on one should it ever become necessary as part of deflecting one (although we would probably use automated devices in that case).

If we go into space only for science, there is no reason to send people. Scientific knowledge can be gained with robots. The Spirit and Opportunity rovers proved that. In 1969, that wasn't true. In 2010, it is.

--Brian
 
N

neutrino78x

Guest
I would send men to Mars so a US military officer can plant a US flag there, and state "I claim this land, and 1000 km in every direction, for We the People of the United States of America." It would become US soil; people born there would be US citizens. Soon thereafter, we start sending civilians there, to own land and engage in commerce with other colonists.

It would be similar to what Britain did with The London Company in North America.

--Brian
 
R

rockett

Guest
neutrino78x":11lsm46e said:
Ah, but manned space should never be "a science project". For example, I want to go to Mars to colonize it. Not just learn scientific facts, but establish a presence of mankind there. Have babies born there. Have people live their whole lives there. Whole separate countries on Mars.

As far as asteroids, NASA astronauts should go there mainly to find out how to deflect an asteroid. Make sure we have the technology to land men on one should it ever become necessary as part of deflecting one (although we would probably use automated devices in that case).

If we go into space only for science, there is no reason to send people. Scientific knowledge can be gained with robots. The Spirit and Opportunity rovers proved that. In 1969, that wasn't true. In 2010, it is.

--Brian
I personally think differently about manned spaceflight, it is science. Think about all the engineering and tech that is required to keep men alive in the most hostile environment humans have ever entered. Think about all the innovation, testing, and experiments just to improve the odds of keeping them alive and healthy. Former Senator John Glenn's orbital trip was not all a publicity stunt, he underwent a bunch of testing to see how if a man his age could even do it. That is science and research. Space medicine is keenly interested in the results, and there have been some spin-offs already returned. For that matter, the ISS is classed as a National Laboritory, all 1 million+ pounds and 100 billion dollars of it.

I happen to agree with you Brian about what we should be doing, but unfortunately the politics of the situation (I don't mean to be grim, just the reality of the current situation, if you pay close attention), watching Congress and the Administration, seems to favor "bread and circuses" for the masses. If you don't believe it, look at the miniscule percentage of spending for NASA in the federal budget vs the rest of it. It is only 0.52 % For a table of what it has been over the years see :
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NASA_Budget
We used to be willing to commit a much higher one. Most of the "Will of the People" seems oriented in the direction of "what's in it for me" instead of the grand vision you are outlining. Everybody is more interested in entitlements for themselves, rather than the "betterment of humanity" these days, sad to say.
 
M

menellom

Guest
Why does it have to be one or the other? Going into space through multiple private and public channels allows us to go into space for multiple reasons - financial gain, scientific understanding, and yes even human colonization.
 
R

rockett

Guest
menellom":27brm3hf said:
Why does it have to be one or the other? Going into space through multiple private and public channels allows us to go into space for multiple reasons - financial gain, scientific understanding, and yes even human colonization.
I quite agree with you menellom as far as multiple avenues - the more the merrier. But I personally feel that NASA should be "on point" not bowing out entirely. Frankly, that's what they appear to be doing under the present program. I'm afraid I don't believe a word of this Mars someday stuff. The only reason that one is on the table even, is because Bolden just threw it out there to appease the Representatives that were taking him to task in hearings. It was not a part of Obama's (lack of) vision.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

ASK THE COMMUNITY

Latest posts