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Thread: Where will the United States Space Program go from Here?

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeph View Post

    While It'll cost 35 billion dollars (holy frak!) it's still a step in the right direction for NASA to try to redeem itself with regards to human spaceflight. I despise the Ares I and IV designs, and I was a proud supporter of the Jupiter DIRECT design, it pleases me to see that NASA (surprisingly) took on the design, but disgusts me that they made it more complicated than it needed to be. 35 billion for a launcher? Really, NASA?

    That said, I'm an even stronger supporter of commercial/private spaceflight than I was 5 years ago. I want to see SpaceX, Blue Origin, Masten, Armadillo, et al do exceedingly well in showing dino-space how things SHOULD be done.
    Yeah, I'm having a hard time even understanding how they even spend that kind of money, lol. And more importantly, that they'll still likely be over budget in the end.

    I agree, the private industry is likely going to make them look silly with how much cheaper it can do things.. I can't decide whether NASA should just be shut down and something else created in it's place, or if it should just get rid of a ton of people and make it more like a private business so they can't just keep doing the same ol overly expensive, over budget, late crap show that they've been doing forever.

    Also, when they're given money it should be contingent on actually getting something done in the amount of money they said it would take. Same for the supplier contracts. Suppliers should only get paid after they've delivered the product, not get to do this cost + x% crap that they do now which gives them all the reason in the world to make sure it's expensive.
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  3. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caparris View Post
    Also, when they're given money it should be contingent on actually getting something done in the amount of money they said it would take. Same for the supplier contracts. Suppliers should only get paid after they've delivered the product, not get to do this cost + x% crap that they do now which gives them all the reason in the world to make sure it's expensive.
    I went to the NASA web sight to check it out and talk about sappy! They act like they are talking to Marry Poppins! I understand talking to the general public but this is really bad. Then they are bragging about the Orion project and playing it along even though it was to be scrapped till the good O boy network decided otherwise. The good O boy network consisting of the same contractors who always get the same bids and always raise the rates far beyond what they originally stated. Your right Caparris they should be held to the price they originally quoted and pass that right on down the line to their suppliers. If they want the contract and to keep getting fed by the same gravy train time after time then put up or get out, right along with the congressman and NASA official whose hand is in their pocket!
    The other thing I read was about the Dream Catcher project. I do think they are in a transition period doing away with the shuttle program and coming up with a scaled down version of the shuttle the Dream Catcher. Lets face it this isn't a fast food joint it's not going to get done in twenty seconds. I don't think the government is that stupid to let the space industry dry up and blow away. The good O boy network will see to that. But it also seems to me I read about that project about twenty years ago as well.
    Lets face it if we don't all start to yell about this, and yell very loud, nothing will change. Then we will all be too pissed off to look at the future through our scopes even though we are looking back to the future! I would rather see everyone pull together get it off your chest email you congress, complain to your state representative and yell very loud. I can't guarantee it will do any good, but if you want to get the wagon back on the road...stand up and do something about it!

    The general public counts more than the good O boys and lobbyist!

  4. #43
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    It is true, that we have too many Contractors who inflate their prices to make incredible amounts of money and are able to justify costs because those who review them have no idea how much a hammer or toilet seat cost. Oh yes, every one needs a toilet seat that will survive a terrible crash, and then be thrown away, never to be used again. Does our Government waste money or what?
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  5. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crazyhair View Post
    Your right Caparris they should be held to the price they originally quoted and pass that right on down the line to their suppliers. If they want the contract and to keep getting fed by the same gravy train time after time then put up or get out, right along with the congressman and NASA official whose hand is in their pocket!
    Agreed.. If they'd switch it over to getting paid upon certain milestones, and you only get paid what was originally agreed (barring some extraordinary circumstance or change request, of course), they'll quickly learn to either quote it right from the get go or they aren't getting paid. The problem now is NASA has the mindset that they've already got x dollars invested in it, what's another 10% to finish something they've already got so much invested in? Then another 10%. And another. They need to start telling these companies NO when they ask for more money. They might lose a little money in the beginning (depending on how suppliers are actually paid before delivering work), but after a few suppliers lose their ass and learn NASA is serious about not giving price increases, things will change.

    Quote Originally Posted by deaman49 View Post
    It is true, that we have too many Contractors who inflate their prices to make incredible amounts of money and are able to justify costs because those who review them have no idea how much a hammer or toilet seat cost. Oh yes, every one needs a toilet seat that will survive a terrible crash, and then be thrown away, never to be used again. Does our Government waste money or what?
    Agreed.. Which is why I can't wait to see what private industry can do. I read an article the other day comparing how much it cost NASA so far to develop the Orion module vs. how much SpaceX built their dragon capsule for. I understand they aren't 100% comparable, but it's such a huge factor of difference that it just helps prove how inefficient NASA and it's contractors are.

    And don't even get me started on the JWST budgeting/timing/program management disaster.
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    Even with all of its flaws, NASA has its place.

    The economic barrier to entry to space exploration was so high that it took a government agency spending public money 60 years to get us to the point where private enterprise could and/or would enter the market.

    If we had relied solely on private companies to get us to the moon or figure out how to launch communications satellites, it likely never would have happened. The costs to acquire the knowledge to make either happen was astronomical, no pun intended. The costs were so high and the complete lack of ROI prevented private enterprise from participating.

    Today, entrepreneurs like Elon Musk are building on the knowledge that NASA and other space agencies have acquired over the past 60 years.

    Without NASA and other government space agencies, companies like Space Exploration Technologies would never have formed.

    -Steve

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    Quote Originally Posted by sdtopensied View Post
    Even with all of its flaws, NASA has its place.

    The economic barrier to entry to space exploration was so high that it took a government agency spending public money 60 years to get us to the point where private enterprise could and/or would enter the market.

    If we had relied solely on private companies to get us to the moon or figure out how to launch communications satellites, it likely never would have happened. The costs to acquire the knowledge to make either happen was astronomical, no pun intended. The costs were so high and the complete lack of ROI prevented private enterprise from participating.

    Today, entrepreneurs like Elon Musk are building on the knowledge that NASA and other space agencies have acquired over the past 60 years.

    Without NASA and other government space agencies, companies like Space Exploration Technologies would never have formed.

    -Steve
    I completely agree.. Now if we could just find a commercial reason to actually be in space, things would go a lot faster,
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    You cant transition Nasa overnight, They have taken a big leap just in low orbit alone with all the private companys going after it. Bolden has his hands full with taking over such a dysfunctional agency but he appears to be getting it on track, This should have been done 10 years ago but wasnt but I think he is doing a great job keeping the politicians happy with the Senate Launch System, using many proven components for the big rocket and at the same time opening up the door for those private companys. I also like the dreamchaser concept much better then I do boring lil capsules that just simply fall somewhere. Also Bolden is a Astronaut, not a bureaucrat paper pusher bought off politician. This means Nasa has a real guy at the helm. I think Nasa will be in terrific shape in just a couple of years.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caparris View Post
    I completely agree.. Now if we could just find a commercial reason to actually be in space, things would go a lot faster,
    For starters, humans are a curious bunch. What's over that hill? Let's go see! Secondly, there are asteroids and other NEOs with rare metals and elements that are worth 20 trillion dollars. Even 4% of the moons surface is titanium. If those aren't reasons to go, I don't know what is.

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    At some point in our future, probably very distant, we will have exhausted the available resources on this planet and we will eventually need to get raw materials from somewhere else. That's likely hundreds of years away, and private enterprise is generally not willing to consider an ROI cycle that numbers in the hundreds of years. NASA and other government run space agencies will have to overcome the barrier to entry of deep space travel before private companies jump in.

    -Steve

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    I don't think it'll be very distant. We've increased the world population and destroyed much of the usable land significantly. We hit 6 billion people around 1994. less than 20 years later we're approaching 7 billion. Feel free to look at any chart showing the population growth since biblical times.
    Like Hawking said, the worst thing we can do as a species is keep all of our eggs in one basket. It'd be nice if we could get the population more educated, provide initiatives to pursue and promote education, and take the intelligent people out into the cosmos.

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