Author Topic: 2010-A momentous year for commercial spaceflight  (Read 699 times)

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2010-A momentous year for commercial spaceflight
« on: February 21, 2011, 12:40:19 PM »
2010: A Momentous Year for Commercial Spaceflight
Post by rickl on Dec 31, 2010, 3:12pm

Rand Simberg of Transterrestrial Musings offers a year in review article at Popular Mechanics.

There is a lot going on that has been under the radar of the MSM and the average person.


Quote:
With the NASA crew contracts and a willingness to move forward from Bigelow and his customers, the future of U.S. human spaceflight, misjudged by many early in the year to have come to an end with the proposed cancellation of the Constellation program, appears brighter than it has since the '60s.


I agree.

Re: 2010: A Momentous Year for Commercial Spacefli
Post by irondiopriest on Jan 1, 2011, 2:17am

One would think that interesting scientific developments like this would garner some media coverage. Just goes to show you how all-consuming the political games and bad news merchandising has become.

Re: 2010: A Momentous Year for Commercial Spacefli
Post by libertasinfinitio on Jan 1, 2011, 12:25pm

Private enterprise to the rescue!

But why am I nervous? Oh, yeah, we still have a private-enterprise loathing clown in the White House.

People better be prepared to handle interference from The Regime, or these outfits will relocate efforts elsewhere. Specifically, what does Science Czar Holdren think of all this?

Re: 2010: A Momentous Year for Commercial Spacefli
Post by rickl on Jan 3, 2011, 8:16pm


Jan 1, 2011, 12:25pm, libertasinfinitio wrote:
Private enterprise to the rescue!

But why am I nervous? Oh, yeah, we still have a private-enterprise loathing clown in the White House.

People better be prepared to handle interference from The Regime, or these outfits will relocate efforts elsewhere. Specifically, what does Science Czar Holdren think of all this?


No question about it, that's a legitimate concern. But we also have to watch out for the Republican Congress, particularly Senators Shelby from Alabama and Hatch from Utah, who are notorious for seeking to preserve NASA jobs in their states no matter what. It's all about the pork.

I don't have the quote handy, but Shelby made a derisive remark several months ago about "space hobbyists working out of their garages". The spectacularly successful Dragon flight on December 8 seems to have shut him up, for now. (FWIW, SpaceX's company headquarters is a former Boeing 747 factory. That's some garage.)

Meanwhile, Rand has another article up at AOL News where he looks forward to 2011. Instapundit linked to it, and also linked to an article of his from 2008, saying, "I told you so." It's a pretty good read.


Quote:
I attended a lot of those conferences back when they were geekfests with an ambience that was half Star Trek convention, half revival meeting. They were fun, and the discussions were often informative, but participants were for the most part on the outside looking in. There was a lot of political discussion, aimed mostly at getting NASA to do the right thing, and at getting Congress to fund NASA to do the right thing, but not a lot of other action.

When my daughter was born in 1995, I quit going for over a decade. I wasn't uninterested, just busy. Recently, though, I attended two conventions—in 2007 and 2008—and discovered that things are different today. From geekfests (not that there's anything wrong with that), the conferences have evolved into something more like the meeting of a professional or trade association. The crowd is better dressed, and often working in the field: one woman I remembered from years back as an activist with Students for the Exploration and Development of Space is now a professor of astronautics at MIT; another former student space activist now coordinates space matters for Google. And truly rich private sector enthusiasts are as conspicuous by their presence now as they were by their absence a decade or two ago.

Re: 2010: A Momentous Year for Commercial Spacefli
Post by libertasinfinitio on Jan 4, 2011, 7:38am

Yeah, kinda befuddles me how some conservatives think a big expensive heavy rocket makes more sense to throw money at than encouraging and enlisting the cooperation of private enterprises that are more innovative and get more bang for the buck...but perhaps it is just politics as usual for some eh?

I guess we'll find out which way the wind blows soon enough...

Re: 2010: A Momentous Year for Commercial Spacefli
Post by sectionhand on Jan 4, 2011, 7:55am


Jan 4, 2011, 7:38am, libertasinfinitio wrote:
Yeah, kinda befuddles me how some conservatives think a big expensive heavy rocket makes more sense to throw money at than encouraging and enlisting the cooperation of private enterprises that are more innovative and get more bang for the buck...but perhaps it is just politics as usual for some eh?

I guess we'll find out which way the wind blows soon enough...


Sort of takes you back to the Pre-WWII days when companies like Curtiss-Wright , Boeing and Grumann used their own money to develop aircraft .
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