Here’s another report on the planetary sciences/NASA dispute this week over funding and grant scheduling.


Please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar to the right or below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.

Here’s another report on the planetary sciences/NASA dispute this week over funding and grant scheduling.

From this report it appears that the complaints by the planetary science community might have been a bit overstated. It doesn’t appear that NASA is cutting the planetary sciences grant program in any significant way.

I suspect that the reason the planetary scientists are so touchy is because they do not trust the Obama administration, based on its previous efforts to eliminate the planetary program entirely. (It is also possible that they are right.)

Share

3 comments

  • I know so many people in this area that voted for Obama twice. I would have thought enlighten self interest would have kicked in by the second time but not so much.

    I love space, planets, and astronomy but when you look at the costs relative to benefit to society there is and should be a debate on whether we should keep funding these massive missions. Personally I’m all for it, but its been so clear from day one that Senator then President Obama doesn’t give to farts about Space. I’m just taken aback by people supporting a man that could very well be responsible from destroying there job. Since space and military spending seem to be be the only things that he is willing to cut.

    That is not to say Obama’s uncaring has been all bad, as Bob points out often it has given us time for private space to finally start to get a foothold but its going to be long time before aa private company is going to sending a probe to other planets and when they do they aren’t going to be doing it just for science of it, they will be doing it for money. I’m sure the same people that voted for Obama twice won’t like that either.

  • “Its going to be long time before a private company is going to sending a probe to other planets…”

    Hi Matt,

    Maybe not so long. See this post from earlier today.

  • I had not seen that when I posted. =) I I hope to see them reach the moon sooner rather than later. All the recent talk of Chinese rovers on the moon has bagged the question in my mind why we(the US) hasn’t been trying to do it ourselves since we left the moon in the 70’s yes its not “sexy” or “hot” like say Mars but there is still much to learn. As you Bob have pointed out the caves on the moon alone might be able to tell us so much. Granted not a great place for rover, but we could more concrete answers for example about water on the moon with rover than we will ever get with satellites.

    All that said, I do stand my my statement that much of what the planetary program does especially in the outer Solar System is beyond what private companies are willing to put money into right now.

    BTW great job on the space show as always.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *