A (Smaller) Space Station With No Purpose?

Transcript of Hearing before the Senate Commerce Committee Subcommittee on Science and Space: Human Space Flight - The Space Shuttle and Beyond

"The station is limited in its research potential by the fact that we are not able, on the station, to combine the appropriate radiation spectrum for deep space flight together with the zero G environment. It is those two environments together that are the truly relevant environment and we can't mimic those, but we can at least mimic the zero G portion."

Griffin Names Winners and Losers in Cost Squeeze, Science (subscription)

"Griffin also suggested "alternative configurations" that would allow NASA to complete the space station with fewer than the 28 shuttle flights now planned. "Some of the research [to be done] on the utilization flights could be deferred," he suggested."

NASA chief lukewarm on space station research, Reuters

"The station is limited in its research potential," NASA Administrator Michael Griffin told a Senate panel on space and science. Rarely enthusiastic about the station, Griffin has said NASA will complete construction to satisfy commitments the United States has made to the project's international partners -- the space agencies of Russia, Europe, Canada and Japan. But he said he would consider moving some funds from the station's scientific research to the development of the new space vehicle."

Editor's note: Duh. Of course the ISS is "limited in its research potential" - it is not yet complete! With only 2 crew on-orbit and the vast majority of its research hardware either sitting on the ground waiting for launch or in funding limbo, there is only so much science that can be done. Taking even more money away from ISS science than has already been drained to build the ISS will simply further reduce its ability to do what it was supposed to do in the first place. Why is Congress going to support NASA's next big long-term project (VSE) if the agency cannot be depended upon to meet the intent of its current long-term effort (ISS)?

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on May 20, 2005 6:10 AM.

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