NASA announces bold plan to still exist by 2045


Genesis cover

On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.

 
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Heh.

“It may seem impossible now, but we hope to realize the vision of establishing a human presence in NASA deeper into the century than ever before imagined,” Bolden added.

When questioned about the plan’s viability, Bolden told reporters that while certain doubts remain, the project was nonetheless an absolutely crucial undertaking for NASA. Bolden further emphasized that the Fortuna Program’s goal was technically achievable on paper, and could feasibly be accomplished in a real-world scenario so long as everything “goes perfectly” for the space agency.

“The first critical step toward reaching our goal is to still be here by the year 2020,” said Bolden, adding that the plan allowed absolutely no room for error. “From there, we will move on to the next phase of the mission, which is to implement an intensive 10-year plan to remain operational. If we meet that goal in 2030, then there’s no reason to believe NASA won’t make it to 2045.”

Read it all. As far as I can tell, there really hasn’t been much difference between NASA’s past two decades and what this Onion piece proposes for NASA’s next three decades.

In fact, after you read the Onion piece above, then read this Orbital ATK press release about the successful results from the solid rocket booster test firing in March. As successful and as legitimate as the engineering was for the booster test, why does the press release sound so much like the Onion article?

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2 comments

  • NASA’s prime mission since Apollo has been to figure out how to continue to exist – it’s been shaped by its environment, one in which spaceflight hasn’t been taken seriously except as a sideshow.

    Another three decades of same-old should be easy after four decades of experience.

  • Arbitrary

    Another version of the story might be that, after Apollo, NASA has aimed at LEO and kind of missed(!) It is much harder than anticipated. The Shuttle and the ISS represent huge efforts to put humans in orbit. Cost, schedule, results were all disappointing. But it was eventually achieved. 6 astronauts have been in space during 15 years. In itself that is useless, but lessons have been learned. Next trip better get someone somewhere, or the public will really have had enough of it.

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