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James Web Space Telescope  (Source: Discovery News)
Hubble's replacement could be killed after years and billions invested

It has been a very long time since the project to replace the Hubble Space Telescope with a new and higher tech device began. Like many other projects that NASA has been working on and projects at other government sponsored facilities, things are under the knife as Washington seeks to cut every ounce of fat from the budget for next year.

One of the projects that NASA is running is the replacement for the Hubble called the James Web Space Telescope. The JWST was unveiled back in May of 2007 and at the time, it was said that the program had met technical and cost schedules for the previous 20 months of development. Somewhere between 2007 and today the program went significantly off course and has come under the knives of politicians looking to trim more budgetary fat.

Discovery News reports that last week the House Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Subcommittee recommend that the JWST program be cancelled. Yesterday the full House Science, Space, and Technology committee approved the subcommittee's plans to cancel the program.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden made a plea to the committee to keep the JWST alive at the last minute. Bolden said, "I have tried to explain what I think is the importance of James Webb, in terms of opening new horizons far greater than we got from Hubble. I would only say that for about the same cost as Hubble in real-year dollars, we'll bring James Webb into operation."

An amendment to the budget that would have sent another $200 million to the project was voted down. So far the JWST has gobbled up $3 billion and all of that money will be lost if the project is cancelled. The program is estimated to cost $6.8 billion when complete so the cancellation would save over $3 billion.

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By qdemn7 on 7/14/2011 2:00:59 PM , Rating: 2
So we cancelled the Super Conducting Super Collider, (to cut those EVUL taxes and EVUL Big Government) and now we no longer have the lead in high energy physics. That has passed the Large Hadron Collider because the EU is willing to spend the money on basic research.

And these these self-same idiots who complain about taxes being too high, and government spending too much money will still crow about American Exceptionalism" and "America being the greatest country on Earth."

By FITCamaro on 7/14/2011 2:09:26 PM , Rating: 2
Actually most conservatives support things like this. There would be plenty of money for them if it wasn't wasted ensuring people had no incentive to find work for two years, paying people to have kids, etc.

Because the research benefits the private sector as well.

By tng on 7/14/2011 4:32:57 PM , Rating: 2
Because the research benefits the private sector as well.
Since the early 60's NASA research for the various space programs has resulted in numerous advancements that have made our lives better, no doubt. Yet there are those out there in positions of power who feel that the money should be spent "here on Earth where it will help people".

By Belard on 7/14/2011 10:19:44 PM , Rating: 2
Well, perhaps you'll lose your job too... and see how it feels?

There are millions of Americans looking for work. if nobody is hiring, then how are they going to get jobs? The TAX breaks that corp American got turn into NO NEW JOBS.

There are no longer conservatives. What are you talking about?
There are only Teabagger & religious nuts.

By Solandri on 7/15/2011 1:44:57 AM , Rating: 2
I lost my job. I didn't use unemployment. I had saved over the previous years instead of going on the spending binge I guess everyone else was on. At the time it seemed like the country was in dire straits and didn't need another person on the dole, so I used my own savings to tide me over.

Was I stupid to pass up "free money"? Let me answer that with a famous quote by a hero to those who now seem to consider handouts to be the government's #1 priority: "Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country."

By pandemonium on 7/15/2011 1:56:23 AM , Rating: 2
Millions of jobs being lost is completely dependent upon the fact that the American Corporate machine employs cheap labor oversees and the lack of US government regulations on smoothing lower to upper class. Highly technical jobs, like what NASA and the thousands of companies that supply to what NASA provides, only improves the position of where the US economy stands opposed to other countries. Cancelling anything NASA is doing is fail, regardless of the level of completion a project in.

Cancelling this program will be another scar forcing me to move out of the US.

"It seems as though my state-funded math degree has failed me. Let the lashings commence." -- DailyTech Editor-in-Chief Kristopher Kubicki
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