Is Steve Cook Being Less Than DIRECT About What NASA Is Doing?

NASA remains silent on rocket that could rescue the Cape, Orlando Sentinel

"NASA denies there ever was such a study [Direct]. But e-mails obtained by the Orlando Sentinel and interviews with NASA employees and contractors indicate that a study was initiated last fall to compare Ares and alternatives in case a backup plan was needed."

Constellation Update, NASA Watch, 15 May 2008

"Editor's note: When I asked Steve Cook if any of his employees were working on the "Direct" or "Jupiter" project he said that he was not aware of that anyone was. When asked if this would be allowed during or after hours, he said that it would not and that this would be "unapproved" work."

Griffin: NASA Is Not Looking at Ares I Alternatives, NASA Watch, 11 Jan 2007

"Editor's note: This morning, at a breakfast sponsored by the Space Transportation Association, I asked Mike Griffin if NASA was working on any designs or plans for an alternate way to get Orion - and humans into orbit. Specifically, I asked if NASA was working on an alternative to the Ares I. Griffin said, rather emphatically, "No". Griffin's answer seems to contradict a variety of supposedly authoritative rumors suggesting that NASA is indeed seeking alternatives. Stay tuned."

Editor's note: Either Steve Cook was being less than truthful in responding to my qustion or he did not know what his own employees were up to. Either that, or everyone that the Orlando Sentinel (and others) have talked to are wrong. Someone has to be helping these Direct guys (a former submarine engineer, a software engineer, an art director, a mathematician/astronomer, and an IT guy who sells rocket models and uses an icon of von Braun instead of his own picture) since none of them has the technical background to produce the sophisticated launch vehicle design analyses and performance trades that they refer to in their pretty powerpoint slides.

This is not the first time NASA has been caught talking out of two sides of its mouth on this issue (below).

Griffin Gets Snarky at DC Breakfast, NASA Watch, 22 January 2008

"Cowing: Last week I asked a question of ESMD Public Affairs about whether the Ares 1-Y flight had been delayed. They replied "NASA has not announced a 12 month postponement of any Ares or Orion test flights and has no plans to do so". Yet several days before that. Jeff Hanley, the Constellation program manager, wrote a memo that said exactly that - that he had internal plans and changes and that the Ares 1-Y had been shifted by one year. Now, are you going to be shifting the launch of Ares 1-Y and if not, why is your Constellation Program Manager announcing this to more than 80 people within the agency?"

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on June 22, 2008 7:52 PM.

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