Saturday, July 20, 2019
Friday, July 19, 2019
Thursday, July 18, 2019
I have the need -- for speed!
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
People who were not directly involved with the Apollo 11 moon landing, 50 years ago, experienced the event in a passive manner, sitting in front of an analog television set, watching the transmissions from the lunar surface while commentators described what was happening on another world in awestruck, breathless tones. It is estimated that 500 million people watched the first moon landing on a planet that contained just 3.5 billion people. Apollo 11 was the most watched and most expensive reality show in human history.
Tuesday, July 16, 2019
Bill Gerstenmaier has been running NASA’s human space flight directorate since 2005. His tenure lasted through three administrations. He is a popular and well-respected NASA manager.
Yet, the fact that President Bush’s Project Constellation and President Obama’s Road to Mars never made it to the launchpad suggested that he was not the man to run President Trump’s Artemis “return to the moon” program. In the interest of getting Americans back to the moon by 2024, Gerstenmaier had to go.
Monday, July 15, 2019
More on Ron Moore's alt-history of the space race.
Sunday, July 14, 2019
Saturday, July 13, 2019
Friday, July 12, 2019
It was very brief. I had seen him in the media talk about Mars a lot, and I just reached out and wanted to make sure that we were in alignment. We want to talk about Mars, and certainly, we want to go to the Moon to get to Mars because that’s the path.
And he said, “Absolutely. You got to go to the Moon to get to Mars because I certainly understand that.” He also says he wants us to talk about Mars. He said that’s the generational thing that will inspire the nation, and he says, “So keep talking about Mars.” And so that’s what we’re doing.
However, three more missions to the moon — Apollos 18, 19 and 20 — could have been flown, but instead were canceled. All of the hardware for these missions had already been built, and trained astronauts were ready to fly. The savings of those cancellations amounted to only a few tens of millions of dollars.
Thursday, July 11, 2019
The irrepressible Keith Cowing is spreading rumors again.
"There is a pervasive rumor circulating in the space sector that the President will make a statement associated w/the #Apollo11 anniversary. It would supposedly have more to do w/Mars than #moon2024. Sources talk about a 24 Jul event at @NASA - maybe JSC. #rumor #hearsay #gossip "
I can believe that the President is going to make a speech for the 50th Anniversary of Apollo. In fact, I advised him to do so recently.
However, I don’t think he’s going to abandon the moon and try to go directly to Mars. As recently as the 4th of July celebration on the Washington Mall the president was careful to mention going back to the moon and going to Mars to Gene Kranz in front of a million people, not to mention the millions more who watched on TV. I think he will talk about going back to the moon and going to Mars as two things that are linked. But he should do it at Rice University rather than JSC. The symbolism would be unmistakable.
The Roman general Publius Flavius Vegetius Renatus said, “If you want peace, prepare for war.”
The statement was true when Roman legions guarded the Pax Romana. It is true today as America’s armed forces maintain a fragile peace throughout the world. It will be true in the future when humanity expands beyond Earth. That means we need a Space Force to keep peace on the high frontier.