On April 15th just this past week, the Obamanator stopped by Kennedy Spaceflight Center to back up his FY2011 vision of changes for NASA.
His plan includes an increase to NASA’s budget of $6 billion $omolian$ over a period of 5 years, but it cancels the beleaguered Constellation Program that is long behind schedule and over-budget. Needless to say that Congress-critters with NASA centers in their state districts that build parts of the Constellation Program didn’t like Obama’s proposed budget.
After his speech in KSC last Thursday explaining his budget and goals for NASA a little more clearer, the opposition was still opposing, but he managed to get his party congress-critters aligned more in line. The main thing is that Obama, other than conceding somewhat on the Orion capsule (making it an escape pod for the ISS), is probably going to get his budget on NASA pushed through Congress virtually unaltered.
Below is a post speech meeting with Norm Augustine and others discussing Obama’s spiel. Augustine as must space cadets know, was head of a panel last year that studied NASA’s situation and found the Program of Record was sorely missing merit of viability and gave Obama some cover for his FY2011 budget.
Personally I think Obama’s plan for NASA has a real good chance of working if it’s not altered too much. I think the private sector is perfectly able to come up with viable space capsule taxis to the ISS or Bigelow Space Habitats.
Plus returning NASA to its NACA roots somewhat is a great way of motivating the private sector to come up with advanced mainstream propulsion systems with reduced cost to the taxpayer.
“Changing the Game” in Space