Wednesday, November 16, 2011

NASA: News is not good

Whatever you think of the Adminstration's NASA policy, when you combine it with the general fiscal crisis and Congressional priorities, the results are alarming planetary scientists. Participation in a joint Mars mission with ESA is up in the air, as are almost all planetary missions not already well into the pipleine. While Mars enthusiast Robert Zubrin's published claim that all future science missions were dead is an exaggeration, the recent House-Senate conference report on NASA offers an immediate budget cut with no prospects of restoration.  Given all that, funding the Webb space telescope and the Space Launch System is not going to leave much money for any new initiatives.
COMMENT: It would be nice to see the aerospace giants offer to fund some small science missions as a public service.  NASA, Lockheed Martin, Norhtrop Grumman, etc. all prosper when NASA prospers. 

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