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Orion may live on in simpler design

America has been the leading spacefaring nations on the planet since the early days of space travel. The U.S. put the first man on the moon and continued to lead the world in exploration and space travel. President Obama unveiled a new budget for NASA in February that dealt many of its space flight programs a serious blow including ambitious plans for putting American's back on the moon.

Obama has already cut funding for the Constellation program along with the funding that would allow for the completion of the Orion crew capsule that would take astronauts to the ISS after the space shuttle fleet is retired. Many in Washington and at NASA have been calling for Obama to clarify his plans for NASA.

Obama is going to talk at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida about his plans for NASA and human spaceflight. The 
New York Times quotes an unnamed Obama administration official saying, "[The president will describe a plan] that unlocks our ambitions and expands our frontiers in space, ultimately meaning the challenge of sending humans to Mars."

Obama is reportedly going to propose a simpler version of the Orion capsule to be used as a lifeboat for the ISS. Obama is also expected to announce a commitment to choosing a design for a heavy-lift rocket by 2015. The official added, "This means major work on the heavy-lift rocket at least two years earlier than Constellation."

One of the big concerns is that the budget cuts will mean thousands of people working in the space industry in Florida and other states are facing layoffs. The 
Wall Street Journal reports that 7,000 workers at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida are facing layoff with the new budget. Concessions made to allow for a simpler version of Orion will allow 2,000 of those jobs to be saved.

NASA deputy administrator Lori Garver said, "He's [Obama is] putting a lot of political capital into it. Human spaceflight is a huge priority of this president."

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RE: the letters
By Anoxanmore on 4/15/2010 10:21:53 AM , Rating: 2

Did 2010 end while I was sleeping? Jan is the take over date from the last President and unless I am WAY off on elementary schooling, 2009 was when it started. So.. One year and 4 months.

Looks around

It is still APRIL of 2010 right?

RE: the letters
By Nfarce on 4/15/2010 10:36:42 AM , Rating: 3
Well, one year and three months in the White house to be exact next week.

But Democrats have controlled the purse strings of Congress for three years and three months now. How much longer Americans are going to put up with the cronyism, fascism, and incompetence remains to be seen. The mid-term 2010 elections this November will be a good start.

RE: the letters
By Anoxanmore on 4/15/2010 10:55:47 AM , Rating: 2
I would agree with you, except we have no one running against our incumbent representative... :(


RE: the letters
By ekv on 4/15/2010 2:17:28 PM , Rating: 2
If you're a conservative -- fiscally, perhaps even socially -- then you may have my vote. Catch my drift?

Vote yourself a pay reduction -- even 10% -- and you definitely have my vote.

"So, I think the same thing of the music industry. They can't say that they're losing money, you know what I'm saying. They just probably don't have the same surplus that they had." -- Wu-Tang Clan founder RZA
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