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Not only can the Chinese space program make it to the moon, it will get there before the U.S., according to NASA

NASA Administrator Michael Griffin told a House Committee on Science and Technology that the Chinese are likely to be the next nation to reach the moon, even before the United States.  "If they wanted to mount a lunar mission, they could do so," Griffin said.  The Chinese space program also has around 200,000 employees, while NASA has a workforce numbering close to 75,000.

Assuming NASA continues to receive the amount of funding it is currently getting, the space agency will be able to send astronauts back to the moon in 2019 -- an additional "few billion extra" will allow NASA to reach the moon in 2017.  The Chinese government continues to funnel large amounts of money towards the nation's space endeavors.  

Serious budget cuts and issues with the current NASA lunar program were the main reasons cited by NASA.  Bart Gordon, chairman of the U.S. House science committee, recently said that NASA is headed for a "train wreck" if the space organization cannot get the funding that it needs.  
With the pending retirement of the space shuttle in 2010, NASA also needs to finish the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) on time after the shuttle is retired.  "If the CEV is delayed even further, then we will cede leadership in human space flight at a time when Russia and China have such capabilities and India has announced its intention to develop them," Griffin said.


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RE: what?
By jeff2007 on 3/19/2007 3:29:05 AM , Rating: -1
I like to approach the whole conspiracy topic from a different angle...

Humans are driven to be the "first" at everything, by nature. Racing, scientific theories, etc. It is who we are.

So, now ask yourselves... There is not ONE human being on the planet in the past 40 years that has wanted to be the "first" to take a satellite/telescope picture of the left over artifacts of the lunar landings.

Hmmmmm, Not one. Perhaps that's because we don't have the technology. Yep, that must be it. Our telescopes suck, the satellites we send to the moon don't take high res pics.

Sorry, it goes against human nature. Let's wait for all the living astronauts to die off and then let's expose it for what it really is...

Or... we can scan the tons of trajectory data from the lunar landings and use that to prove it really happen... DAMN, I forgot, they all got stolen.

Makes you think Heh?????


RE: what?
By TwistyKat on 3/19/2007 6:06:49 AM , Rating: 2
Doesn't make me think. I'm quite confident it really happened. To pull of a hoax like this on a global scale (even the Russians acknowledged it was real) would virtually be impossible.

So many people would have had to be on board with the hoax and be trusted to keep quiet for the rest of their lives.

At least one person would have had an axe to grind or looking to make some $ and come forward by now with evidence that it was staged.

It really happened. Stop kidding yourself.


RE: what?
By Oregonian2 on 3/19/2007 3:45:26 PM , Rating: 4
That's exactly the point. The USSR'ians certainly would have been tracking things and seeing exactly what was going on. They would have been able to track where signals were coming from very precisely using a couple earth tracking stations. Had it been faked, in 1969, the USSR would have blown it up sky-high in the press. To think that the Russians were cooperating with a faked landing back when they were our most bitter enemies is hilarious to think of.


RE: what?
By Visual on 3/19/2007 7:43:25 AM , Rating: 2
you are so far from reality it's not even funny.
if you had any clue of what you're talking about, you'd know that we can't hope to see any machinery that we left on the moon with a traditional telescope. even hubble's resolution is too low, and for a telescope on earth the atmosphere would make it impossible.

but ordinary telescopes are not all that we have. scientists have reflected laser beams off special prisms that appolo crews have placed on various sites on the moon, and use this method for calculating the distance with millimeter precision. i wonder how conspiracy maniacs explain this one - perhaps an unmanned probe delivered those mirrors, eh? well, then a few years in the future when china lands there and sees the usa rovers and footprints and whatever, i'm sure some nuts will claim a secret unmanned probe delivered those too...


RE: what?
By jabber on 3/19/2007 10:46:41 AM , Rating: 2
What would be cool? If and when either the US or the Chinese land on the moon and get anywhere near the old luna rovers, slap on a new battery and away they go.

However, in reality I don't know what degrading effects 40+ years of solar exposure and lunar temps would have on them.


RE: what?
By jeff2007 on 3/20/2007 1:14:56 AM , Rating: 1
First of all, you are so blinded that you can't question anything. Who said anything about Traditional Telescopes??? What about the SMART 1 European satellite? It's primary mission was to MAP out the moon and take super high res pics. I suppose according to you idiots, they used traditional camera on the satellite. They even crashed the satellite INTO the moon.

How frickin close do we have to be to get a picture. You are so pathetically satisfied with media spin it's sickening.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/5309656....


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