Monday, January 30, 2012

Space Launch System: Will it Fly?

Experts divided on super-booster

The SLS is the only major space transportation project NASA has going (industry has others of course, but people pay more attention to a NASA program, especially if it supports human space flight.)  NASA management is bullish on it, but other experts wonder if it's the best approach. A lot of people, myself included, are afraid the very expensive project may be starved of funds and end up getting canceled. Five-flight Shuttle astronaut Scott Parazynski, says, "I worry about this one, in particular, because there's really not a destination with milestones. When you have a rocket, but you don't really know where it's going to take you yet, that becomes discretionary funding that's easily canceled. And that's what I think is going to happen."
Does the President have us on a workable course for human exploration, or would one of the GOP candidates be better? By workable, I don't just mean they would fund good ideas, but would they let the engineers do the work without political interference and constant budget changes?  NASA has staked a lot on this big bird. 

1 comment:

Dan said...

The SLS is mandated by congress so, just as the Space Shuttle, it will happen no matter what...until they cancel it. The SpaceX rockets offer a cheaper better way to do the actual work but due to jobs and votes congress wants SLS to happen..41 Billion and not launching the heavy lift version until 2030..very sad.