Sunday, February 28, 2010

Articles of Interest

I'm establishing an "Articles of Interest" blog entry series.

These posts will contain links to timely articles about the politics of space exploration, or anything else I think might interest you.

Three web sites I regularly check are, and the Aviation Week web site. But there are plenty others, and when I come across an informative article posted pretty much anywhere I'll post it.

Here are the inaugural articles of interest.

Space News February 26, 2010 "Suborbital Ventures Eye NASA Business" — NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver unveiled the Commercial Reusable Suborbital Research (CRuSR) program, under which the agency proposes to spend $75 million over the next five years to make use of commercial suborbital vehicles. The funding shows how "serious we are about developing and opening this market," she said.

Space News February 26, 2010 "NASA's New Direction Drawing Fire From House and Senate Lawmakers" — Elected officials allege that NASA's plan to cancel Constellation and invest billions in enabling technologies leaves the United States without a clear goal for human spaceflight and will cost jobs.

Space News February 26, 2010 "NASA Propulsion Plans Resonate with Some in Rocket Industry" — NASA’s plan to devote significant funding beginning next year to develop a new main-stage rocket engine following the cancellation of the agency’s Ares 1 and Ares 5 launcher programs is in line with what some industry officials have called for in recent months as a way to maintain U.S. core competencies in propulsion.

Aviation Week February 26, 2010 "NASA Plan Falls Flat in Congress" — Objections to the Obama Administration's new space policy fall into two broad categories — the lack of a clear objective in space for the new program, and the "faith-based" belief, in the words of one House member, that a commercial route to orbit for U.S. astronauts is better than the government-managed Ares I and Orion vehicles. February 25, 2010 "NASA's New Space Plan a 'Radical Change,' Lawmakers Say" — A Congressional subcommittee on Thursday urged caution for the new NASA space exploration plan unveiled earlier this month, and criticized its lack of a defined vision and dependence on commercial ventures to fly astronauts in space.

Aviation Week February 23, 2010 "NASA Wants A New Hydrocarbon Engine" — Details emerging about NASA’s Fiscal 2011 budget plan in advance of critical hearings on Capitol Hill this week show the agency beginning work on a new kerosene-fueled first-stage rocket engine comparable to Russia’s RD-180, and a host of other technology-development projects the Obama administration believes were slighted in the push for a return to the moon.

Sierra Nevada's Dream Chaser

Aviation Week February 19, 2010 "Sierra Nevada Building On NASA Design" — Sierra Nevada Corp. has $20 million in federal stimulus funds for its Dream Chaser commercial crew launch vehicle, but the company has already applied many times that amount in NASA funding for its high-stakes effort to build a private route to space for the agency’s astronauts.

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