Author Topic: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012  (Read 63898 times)

Offline Chris Bergin

General Bolden at this one. On NASA TV.

Saw no presser for this.

He's already having an argument with a Congressman over the Mars missions and JWST.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #1 on: 03/21/2012 01:06 PM »
It's this congressman who's not happy. Saying he can't support this budget that hurts the Mars missions. Says he can't use MSL as an "excuse" that NASA isn't giving up on Mars.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #2 on: 03/21/2012 01:11 PM »
Q) What could you do with unlimited resources.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #3 on: 03/21/2012 01:15 PM »
Bolden not interested in that question, says he only wants the president's budget fully funded.

Says Mars mid-2030s again.

Says US is still the leader today and disagrees with people who say otherwise. "We are the leaders in the world be it human or robotic".

Congressman notes it doesn't provide assurance when shuttle was retired and astros are going to Russia.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #4 on: 03/21/2012 01:18 PM »
General Bolden hints he's hopeful ITAR will be removed, relating to US companies working with overseas companies. Not his call though.

Notes he already has examples of cost savings when NASA deals with private companies. Commercial Crew is hundreds of millions, as opposed to billions in past NASA programs. We're not dictating pace and content, we're consultants.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #5 on: 03/21/2012 01:20 PM »
Note of some Plutonium production, which General Bolden says he's satisfied with (context, how much they are paying for it).

Offline dsmillman

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Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #6 on: 03/21/2012 01:21 PM »
It's this congressman who's not happy. Saying he can't support this budget that hurts the Mars missions. Says he can't use MSL as an "excuse" that NASA isn't giving up on Mars.
This is Congressman Schiff, Democrat of California.  To put it mildly he did not give Mr. Bolden a pleasant reception.  I have seldom seen a Congressman of the same party as the administration ask such tough questions.  At certain points he accused Mr. Bolden of lying to Congress last year.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #7 on: 03/21/2012 01:25 PM »
This congressman opens by saying he's grieving for NASA, based on the President's budget. "It's visionless." Doesn't believe Bolden is happy with it all himself.

Says Planetary Science is being damaged. Says it's coming from OMB. "There's no way you can say the Mars program survives" this.

Lots of mentions of the Decadal Survey, which I believe Blackstar has referenced a number of times. Says it's the law.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #8 on: 03/21/2012 01:32 PM »
General Bolden knew that the original ExoMars mission couldn't be done. So this is just more incremental descoping.

"I'm excited about this budget. OMB don't tell me what to do. We're not trailing, everyone wants to work with us."

(He's really fighting!)

Congresman understands the descoping, will try and find more funding, "but what do we need to do to follow the law?"

Bolden: Support the president's budget?

Congressman: But that doesn't...

Bolden: It does....

Congressman: Of course it doesn't...it's not consistent with reality.

(FOOD FIGHT! :D)

Bolden: We have to respectfully disagree. Talks about MSL again. If I don't do MSL you won't give me any money.

Congressman thinks the admin is throwing a wet blanket on it.
« Last Edit: 03/21/2012 02:50 PM by Chris Bergin »

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #9 on: 03/21/2012 01:37 PM »
Now commercial crew 2017 and ISS.

Bolden: Says he will support ISS to go beyond 2002.

Congressman: But you won't be here (ouch!)

Bolden: But I facilitate future admins.

Congressman going after Commercial Crew. Asking if there will be more slips past 2017.

Bolden: When we looked at the dates, the funding makes us confident for 2017 (including challenges). There are unknowns, but we know how long it takes to deal with issues you can't understand.

Congressman quoting Space News (McAllistair), saying Commercial Crew doesn't make sense without the full 850m this year and in future years. Do you agree?

Bolden: I would not agree with that statement. We have agreed to come down from 1.2 to 1.3 billion based on closing the gap. We didn't get that. We didn't get a floor of 500m, so we're now stuck with 2017. We may be lucky and bring it in sooner.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #10 on: 03/21/2012 01:44 PM »
Bolden notes Commercial Crew is about not relying on the Russians, to get to ISS, and to grow the economy.

Congressman says he wants the gap closed and not to seed the companies. Questions him on a quote about Commercial Crew being too late to support the ISS.

Bolden says the program is still not worthless even if it slips to 2020. But his priority is to close the gap.

Congressman wants to know why taxpayers should pay the billions for commercial crew when other projects are getting cut.  Notes these companies have hired a lot of lobbyists.

Do you have a plan B?

Bolden: We would have to select more than one provider this summer. One provider and 2017's chance is deminished. Ideally you would have three or four fighting for the contract, to make two available.  As soon as the first commercial crew services begin, we're done with Russia.

It's 450m per crewmember with Soyuz (train and send). (WOW!) "That's taxpayer money going to Russia."

Q) But what is it per seat?

A) $63m, locked in until 2016.

Congressman "We defeated the Nazis in four years" (Why he said that I do not know, not even accurate).
« Last Edit: 03/21/2012 01:47 PM by Chris Bergin »

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #11 on: 03/21/2012 01:52 PM »
This congressman is encouraged by commercial space because Virgin Galatic sold their 500th seat (to a billionaire actor). ;D

Claims the arguments are not party political.

Lots of praise for the president. So I assume he's a dem? ;)

Talking about the education budget.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #12 on: 03/21/2012 01:57 PM »
Mr Wolf's back to talking about defeating Nazis!

Asking again about finding money to save the Mars programs, but the question is about aeronautics.

Bolden notes some of the aeronautics doesn't benefit NASA, it benefits DOD and NASA shouldn't pay the whole bill.
« Last Edit: 03/21/2012 01:58 PM by Chris Bergin »

Offline MP99

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #13 on: 03/21/2012 02:08 PM »
Congressman "We defeated the Nazis in four years" (Why he said that I do not know, not even accurate).

Depends if you think the war started in 1939, or on December 8, 1941 (day after Pearl Harbor).

cheers, Martin
« Last Edit: 03/21/2012 02:09 PM by MP99 »

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #14 on: 03/21/2012 02:09 PM »
Mr Wolf loves the Chinese people, but doesn't like the group who house arrest political prisoners....worried about China's forward plans.

Bolden says "They focus on the moon, we focus on Mars." China's quality is dwarfed by NASA. We're still way ahead.

"We're like Tiger Woods. We're really good, but if we stay out of the gym others will catch us up".

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #15 on: 03/21/2012 02:14 PM »
Talking about Chinese hackers and stuff.

Bolden thinks most are kids, cause they are able to.
« Last Edit: 03/21/2012 02:15 PM by Chris Bergin »

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #16 on: 03/21/2012 02:22 PM »
On to Shuttle T&R being impacted by a pension payout.

Bolden: Funding is in place, depends where the market is when the payment is paid but looks like retirement will be closed out on time.

On Soyuz Seats:

Bolden: We assume commercial crew in 2017, so we know how many seats we need for Soyuz.

Something about a waiver for "INKSA?".

Mr Wolf notes Russia is aiding the Syrians to kill their own people.

Bolden: We'll always be reliant on the Russians for ISS>

Mr Wolf grumbles ;D

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #17 on: 03/21/2012 02:30 PM »
On ISS costs, how little is spent on research.

Bolden: Gerst is looking at reducing the cost of Station operations. Looking at taking NASA out of funding the research, funded by investors. A business proposition.

Q) National Lab portion is unused. Why not lease out to labs for cures for cancer etc. How much is available to use?

Bolden: There is room. Bringing in an outside organization to find interest in using the space.

Wallops - a heavier rocket being looked at for that site.

Bolden: Investing in people to help "MARS". (No reference to this heavier rocket).

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #18 on: 03/21/2012 02:34 PM »
On civil servant buyouts.

Bolden notes they are trying to retrain some civil service workers, as they did shuttle and that's all they did.

Notes a lot of Shuttle contractor workers went over the oil industry. Florida workers didn't really have much of an option.

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: House committee on appropriations - March 21, 2012
« Reply #19 on: 03/21/2012 02:39 PM »
JWST cost overruns - applying mitigation in other programs.

Bolden: Some of the lessons learned from JWST related to management. Taken on some responsibilities. Took funding out of astrophysics, became an agency priority. Looking at reporting frequency, increased oversight, milestone reports (met every one over the last year). The replan is valid.

Exploration Destinations!

Bolden: We have difinative goals, Mars in mid 2030s. NEA in mid 2020s. Capabilities based. If we get a breakthrough in propulsion we could do it faster, but the destinations are well defined.

(Chris coughs ;))

However, if I ask the astronaut office, they'd say we need to go to the moon. They see 2030s out of reach. It's not out of the realm of possibility that we'll put two astronauts on the moon! (There we go at last!!!), but we aren't going to colonize.

Notes the eye problem recently noted for astros on the ISS, saying one idea of putting astros on the moon would be to see if they have the same results as seen on the ISS.
« Last Edit: 03/21/2012 02:43 PM by Chris Bergin »

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