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NASA Space Government The Almighty Buck

SpaceX Executive Calls For $22-25 Billion NASA Budget 114

MarkWhittington (1084047) writes "While participating in a panel called "The US Space Enterprise Partnership" at the NewSpace Conference that was held by the Space Frontier Foundation on Saturday, SpaceX Chief Operating Officer Gwynne Shotwell opined that NASA's budget should be raised to $22-25 billion, according to a tweet by Space Policy Online's Marcia Smith. The theory is that a lot of political rancor has taken place in the aerospace community because of the space agency's limited budget. If the budget were to be increased to pay for everything on the space wish list, the rancor will cease.

The statement represents something of a departure of the usual mutual antagonism that exists between some in the commercial space community and some at NASA. Indeed Space Politics' Jeff Foust added a tweet, "Thought: a panel at a Space Frontier Foundation conf is talking about how to increase NASA budget. Imagine that in late 90s." The Space Frontier Foundation has been a leading voice for commercializing space, sometimes at the expense of NASA programs."
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SpaceX Executive Calls For $22-25 Billion NASA Budget

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 27, 2014 @02:12PM (#47544295)

    Right now, it's communication satellites. Take a look at the current launch manifest [].

    They haven't shown any interest in space tourism, but they would probably be happy to provide launch services for a company that would arrange it. Bigelow Aerospace is another space startup working on flexible space station modules, which could be used on a NASA space station or a commercial/tourist station.

    Long term, in order for SpaceX to realize their dreams of transporting passengers to Mars, there will probably need to be a new major industry in space. I have no idea what it will be. Space mining, maybe. The main problem is that most activities in space, such as mining asteroids, have the potential to make space exploration a lot cheaper (refuel in orbit rather than launching a huge rocket to get a tiny amount of fuel into space) but don't provide any economic benefit back on Earth.

  • What to cut (Score:5, Informative)

    by scotts13 ( 1371443 ) on Sunday July 27, 2014 @03:33PM (#47544773)

    Give NASA the $14 billion spent in fiscal 2013 training foreign armies and providing them with weapons. That'll make up the difference nicely. Not enough? Move on to the $24 billion spent on the "National Drug Control Strategy." Two things we don't need more of are dead bodies and prison inmates.

  • by DanielRavenNest ( 107550 ) on Sunday July 27, 2014 @04:21PM (#47545083)

    Why even waste time developing this when we can use SpaceX, the Deltas, Atlas and so on, perhaps human rated versions of these.

    Because the Senator from Alabama wants to keep the NASA center in Huntsville busy.

  • by jklovanc ( 1603149 ) on Sunday July 27, 2014 @04:30PM (#47545153)

    yet we refuse to spend more on space industry than we do on our aircraft carrier program (old Nimitz class cost about 4.5 billion - and we have 11 of them).

    The Nimitz program [] produced ten carriers between 1968 and 2006. That is 38 years for a yearly budget of $1.8B. That is approximately 10% of the NASA budget. There are now also 10 large carriers in service. Comparing a long project with a single year budget is inaccurate.

  • by catchblue22 ( 1004569 ) on Sunday July 27, 2014 @05:39PM (#47545725) Homepage

    As this article indicates, United Launch Alliance, the principle competitor to SpaceX has hired Shockey Scofield Solutions [] to initiate a propaganda campaign against SpaceX. You can see ULA listed as a client in the website listed above. The campaign is indirectly mentioned in the following very informative article [], just past the halfway point in the article. You will also notice another client to Shockey Scofield Solutions as Koch Industries, which is a company notorious for its deceptive propaganda campaigns against action on global warming.

    Given this fact, I would tend to suspect many of the anti SpaceX comments as being part of an astroturfing campaign. To be honest, I really don't understand why an actual thinking person would have any problem with SpaceX. They build reliable rockets quickly and cheaply. What on Earth is the problem with that?

The other line moves faster.