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Nasa Manned Spaceflight Funding, Can NASA afford manned spaceflight?
post Nov 24 2005, 03:46 AM
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The Washington Post reports in this article that the current US budget shortfalls may force NASA to cut half of the planned manned spaceflights in the coming years. Excerpts from the Post article:

"A large deficit in NASA's troubled shuttle program threatens to seriously delay and possibly cripple President Bush's space exploration initiative unless the number of planned flights is cut virtually in half or the White House agrees to add billions of dollars to the human spaceflight budget."
Under the budgets projected for the next five years, experts outside and within the Bush administration agree, it will be impossible -- by several billion dollars -- to complete the planned shuttle missions and finish the new spacecraft [CEV] by 2012, or maybe even by 2014...Griffin acknowledged as much at a Nov. 3 House Science Committee hearing, saying the plan to finish the space station and retire the shuttle in 2010 faces a "$3 billion to $5 billion" funding shortfall.

A committee document placed the deficit at "nearly $6 billion," and some sources said even that figure could be low. NASA's budget difficulties have also been complicated by having to pay for about $400 million in special projects inserted, mostly by senators, into the agency's 2006 funding.

The sources said the White House is juggling several proposals to close the deficit, but one industry source said, "None of the choices are good -- NASA's in a box."
Several sources confirmed that the budget office in the early negotiations proposed stopping shuttle flights altogether. "It sucks money out of the budget, and it's a dead-end program," one source said.

But "that argument's over," another source said. "The political side of the White House said, 'We're keeping it.' If you kill the shuttle right now, it will be heavy lifting for your foreign policy because of the international obligations" around the space station.

A proposal under consideration would keep the full complement of shuttle flights -- 18 to finish the space station and one to service the Hubble Space Telescope -- and let completion of the crew exploration vehicle slip to 2014, if necessary, or even beyond.

"The president said originally there would be a four-year gap, and that's realistic," one source said. "My personal view, though, is whatever date you set . . . it will slip."

Jonathan Ward
Manning the LCC at http://www.apollolaunchcontrol.com
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post Nov 24 2005, 03:07 PM
Post #2


Another interpretation that can be placed on this article is that the White House will try to keep both manned programs -- Shuttle/Station and Bush's new manned lunar program -- going by cutting fully $1.2 billion per year out of the UNMANNED space program for at least the next five years. If so, the effect on space science will be devastating.
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Posts in this topic
- ilbasso   Nasa Manned Spaceflight Funding   Nov 24 2005, 03:46 AM
- - BruceMoomaw   Another interpretation that can be placed on this ...   Nov 24 2005, 03:07 PM
- - OWW   QUOTE (ilbasso @ Nov 24 2005, 03:46 AM)Severa...   Nov 24 2005, 10:38 PM
- - Colby   When you put the foam issue as you just did, it do...   Nov 26 2005, 12:49 AM
|- - jamescanvin   QUOTE (Colby @ Nov 26 2005, 11:49 AM)When you...   Nov 26 2005, 01:44 AM
|- - mars loon   QUOTE (jamescanvin @ Nov 26 2005, 01:44 AM)Th...   Jan 1 2006, 03:03 AM
|- - mcaplinger   QUOTE (mars loon @ Dec 31 2005, 07:03 PM)DAWN...   Jan 2 2006, 03:03 AM
- - Toma B   This is quote from Space.com article about Space S...   Dec 17 2005, 02:18 PM
- - ermar   The New York Times lays out its position on NASA f...   Dec 31 2005, 04:02 AM
- - David   Let's suppose (and I don't suppose this is...   Jan 1 2006, 01:31 AM
- - djellison   Problem is, Bush went "Lets go back to the mo...   Jan 1 2006, 01:46 AM
- - edstrick   djellison: "Problem is, Bush went "Lets...   Jan 1 2006, 07:29 AM
|- - djellison   QUOTE (edstrick @ Jan 1 2006, 07:29 AM)Long b...   Jan 1 2006, 11:44 AM
|- - Bob Shaw   In my view, the Shuttle programme's woes hark ...   Jan 1 2006, 02:27 PM
||- - dvandorn   QUOTE (Bob Shaw @ Jan 1 2006, 08:27 AM)Shuttl...   Jan 2 2006, 12:46 AM
||- - nprev   QUOTE (dvandorn @ Jan 1 2006, 05:46 PM)Thank ...   Jan 2 2006, 05:38 AM
|- - dvandorn   QUOTE (djellison @ Jan 1 2006, 05:44 AM)Clear...   Jan 2 2006, 12:43 AM
|- - djellison   QUOTE (dvandorn @ Jan 2 2006, 12:43 AM)Bush *...   Jan 2 2006, 11:33 AM
|- - Bob Shaw   Doug: The international ISS partners, bar Russia,...   Jan 2 2006, 11:59 AM
||- - djellison   QUOTE (Bob Shaw @ Jan 2 2006, 11:59 AM)Why sh...   Jan 2 2006, 12:16 PM
|- - dvandorn   QUOTE (djellison @ Jan 2 2006, 05:33 AM)...th...   Jan 2 2006, 12:41 PM
|- - djellison   QUOTE (dvandorn @ Jan 2 2006, 12:41 PM)The pr...   Jan 2 2006, 12:56 PM
- - edstrick   I'm in about 90% agreement with Bob Shaw's...   Jan 2 2006, 06:37 AM

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