Friday, June 25, 2010

And Now Buzz Aldrin

Buzz Aldrin has been interviewed on his Space Czar commandments and found to support the myth of The Gap.

"Meanwhile, I also very strongly suggest that instead of retiring the shuttles [in late 2010] and buying rides with the Russians for five, six, or seven years to get to our $100 billion space station, a highly undesirable situation, we stretch out the flights of the five remaining shuttle orbiters to 2015."

Five remaining shuttle orbiters? Really?

I simply don't get why people are so set on framing the debate of Shuttle extension as an alternative to buying seats on the Soyuz. As has been said before: the problem isn't boldly going, it is boldly staying. The Shuttle can't do that with its 14 day on-orbit endurance. So even if you keep flying the Shuttle you're still going to have to buy a couple of Soyuz every 6 months to use as lifeboats.. or wait for Orion CRV to be ready.. should be around 2015.

I thought Buzz got this and he was only advocating for Shuttle extension to build his cycler.. apparently suggesting continuing the Shuttle to do a task the Shuttle does "well" - on orbit assembly - isn't good enough anymore. I guess everyone wants to pile on the Russia bashing.


  1. Anonymous9:36 PM

    I have a lot of ISSUES with the shuttle program. However in light of what has been offered as replacements "splash down capsules". Fly the damn thing until some company can offer a better more enabling alternative than a frickin splash down capsule. There are several other low-cost alternatives to splash down capsules. When I see a company with the resources of Boeing come forward with a capsule concept in the 21st century it gives me great concern.

  2. Kelly Starks1:19 AM

    Have to agree. If you really worry about on orbit stay time, the Orion systems were derived (and simplified) versions of the old extended duration orbiter systems. it would certainly be cheaper and better to make longer duration shuttles, then fielding Apollo on steroids capsule.

    Personally, I think more consideration should be given to our not wanting to downgrade our capacities in space as a argument for keeping shuttle; but not relying on other nations for space access is certainly a part of it.

  3. Anonymous, your argument that anything without wings is a step backwards is not shared by the biggest wings advocates in the business.. please try to raise the level of discussion.