Tag: private space

Space leaders to Congress: Light this commercial candle!

By Phil Plait | March 3, 2011 11:00 am

I received a very interesting email from Alan Stern — head of the New Horizons Pluto flyby mission, and who, for a year, was NASA’s Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate.

Here’s what it said:

The attached open letter was sent to Congress today after being signed by over 55 space leaders.

The letter urges Congress to fully fund NASA’s plan to use commercial companies to carry crew to the Space Station.

Among the letter’s signatories are an unusually broad group of former NASA executives and advisors, former astronauts, CEOs and directors of firms large and small, space scientists, space journalists, and others. We include 14 former NASA astronauts, 5 former NASA senior executives, 13 educators and nonprofit leaders, and 24 space industry leaders from a wide variety of firms and institutions, both large and small.

I am a big advocate of this, having written many times that NASA should be exploring and creating new technologies, but should not be in the business of hauling stuff to space. That is better — and more cheaply — done by commercial contractors.

I’ve put the entire letter online here for you to read.

Here’s one part I particularly like:
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CATEGORIZED UNDER: NASA, Piece of mind, Politics, Space

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