Author Topic: Predicted NASA direction from next President?  (Read 32083 times)

Offline KEdward5

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Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« on: 10/14/2014 03:00 PM »
I thought I'd start a thread that would see what people's opinions are for what the NASA direction may be from the next President, both Republican and Democrat.

Thoughts?

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #1 on: 10/14/2014 03:23 PM »
Thoughts?

I think this thread is likely to lead to a lot of wild speculation and is likely to give the mods a headache. Let's see if I'm right (hope not)
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Offline RonM

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #2 on: 10/14/2014 03:23 PM »
I thought I'd start a thread that would see what people's opinions are for what the NASA direction may be from the next President, both Republican and Democrat.

Thoughts?

That really depends on the individual and not the party. Neither party considers NASA a priority, so as long as things are going relatively smooth they will stay the course.

Constellation got cancelled because it was having too many problems. If it was close to on schedule and budget we would still have Constellation.

If there are big changes, they would come from Congress.

 

Offline TomH

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #3 on: 10/14/2014 04:56 PM »
The policy of #45 will be the same as #42. All you have to do is examine those eight years.

Offline scienceguy

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #4 on: 10/14/2014 05:02 PM »
I predict that the next US president will hem and haw in regard to space, and not set a HSF destination.
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Online Chris Bergin

Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #5 on: 10/14/2014 06:15 PM »
I think this is an interesting thread. I would think they will stay the course. I'm sure changing direction - yet again - wouldn't work, especially if it changed - yet again - four years later.

So yes, stay the course, unless they are so concerned they conduct another Augustine style review and then all bets are off.

Offline strangequark

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #6 on: 10/14/2014 06:40 PM »
I don't expect drastic changes, however, I do think that lunar exploration may be reemphasized, especially as the Chinese make more visible progress.

Offline yg1968

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #7 on: 10/14/2014 06:46 PM »
I sort of wonder if Orion and SLS will make sense to the next President. SLS is supposed to fly in 2017 and the next President will be sworn in in January 2017. So it would probably be to late to cancel SLS before its first flight. However, that isn't true of crewed Orion (which is scheduled for 2021).  I wonder if it wouldn't make more sense to cancel Orion and replace it with commercial BLEO capsules. If we can't afford any payload for SLS, it will eventually be cancelled too. It might suffer the same fate as Energia.

If a Republican wins, I would expect the Moon to become the main emphasis again.
« Last Edit: 10/14/2014 07:07 PM by yg1968 »

Offline redliox

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #8 on: 10/14/2014 07:08 PM »
I sort of wonder if Orion and SLS will make sense to the next President. SLS is supposed to fly in 2017 and the next President will be sworn in in January 2017. So it would probably be to late to cancel it. However, that isn't true of Orion.  I wonder if it wouldn't make more sense to cancel Orion and replace it with commercial BLEO capsules. If we can't afford any payload for SLS, it will eventually be cancelled too. It might suffer the same fate as Energia.

If a Republican wins, I would expect the Moon to become the main emphasis again.

SLS is now scheduled for 2018 actually...otherwise...I agree regarding canceling Orion and replacing it with something commercial and more flexible.  Whether or not a President (and Congress) agrees to that is another matter.

The Republicans have favored returning to the Moon, but only relatively recently (possibly in part due to it being the Bush administration's direction).  I haven't seen the Democrats favor a destination, all though Clinton spearheaded the partnership with Russia in ISS...with good and bad repercussions we're feeling today; if anything they seem to favor whatever expands technology, international relations, and creates jobs (government or otherwise).  Otherwise ever since the 70s nobody's given more than a glance over at NASA, and usually whenever they did it was to cut pork.

We'll only know a direction if a candidate openly announces it.  A Republican president might change elements of Obama's current program, but given that SLS and Orion will be nearly complete there would likewise be hesitation to do so.  Politics will remain a wildcard.
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Offline German Space Fan

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #9 on: 10/14/2014 07:59 PM »
I think the new direction in Human Exploration will depend quite on the economical situation in the US. If it's good, it's likely SLS/Orion will be continued or even extended. If it's bad... we'll see. How the situation will exactly be in two years is a question I can't answer. If I could, I wouldn't be a poor space enthusiast and sit in front of my old PC any more. ;)

Btw: Quite a lot media think Ms Clinton will be the Democrat's candidate 2016. Does anybody know how she thinks about human spaceflight?

Offline butters

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #10 on: 10/14/2014 08:28 PM »
The politics of NASA are driven by geographic rather than partisan considerations and depend a lot more on Congress than on the White House. You can try to understand NASA politics in terms of Democrats and Republicans or liberals and conservatives, but you will not succeed. If there is an ideological factor, it would be whether one believes that competition is a sin or a virtue in a capitalist system. This is not a typical factor in partisan identification.

To the extent that the next President has any reason to weigh in on space policy, it would be a question of whether the best way to strategically "isolate" Russia and China is to compete with their space programs, ignore them, or mock them. Of course, nothing the White House can do with NASA can have anywhere near the geopolitical impact on Russia and China that can be achieved in other policy areas such as finance and trade.

The President can order a rocket launched at any target he wishes with barely any limitations or oversight, as long as the objective is to degrade and destroy. Otherwise it falls under the jurisdiction of Congress.

Offline rayleighscatter

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #11 on: 10/14/2014 08:44 PM »
I think we'll see an increase in NASA activity, not much likely, but more than now. I think we'll start seeing more missions proposed, at least to support a 12-14 month interval between launches.

Both parties tend to support HSF missions so appropriations for specific missions will likely be achievable if the President puts them before Congress (I'm not necessarily saying massive Mars-like missions yet, but research, lunar orbits, etc). The two groups that tend to be hostile towards NASA are Libertarian Republicans who think it's a waste of taxpayer money to fund spaceflight, and Social Democrats who think NASA's budget could better be used on social programs. Neither of those groups seem likely to have a frontrunner next election, hence my original thesis.

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #12 on: 10/14/2014 08:45 PM »
SLS is now scheduled for 2018 actually...

Which is a test flight.  The only flights that matter are operational ones, and none have been funded.

Quote
...otherwise...I agree regarding canceling Orion and replacing it with something commercial and more flexible.  Whether or not a President (and Congress) agrees to that is another matter.

It's not just a matter of which vehicle to use, but what is the goal?  As of today we have none other than continuing research at the ISS (which we need to do).

Quote
The Republicans have favored returning to the Moon...

I've seen no evidence that the Republican party, much less a plank on their platform, wants to push for doing anything in space, including returning to the Moon.  Gingrich brought up the topic during the 2012 cycle and was pummeled from within his own party.

Quote
I haven't seen the Democrats favor a destination, all though Clinton spearheaded the partnership with Russia in ISS...with good and bad repercussions we're feeling today; if anything they seem to favor whatever expands technology, international relations, and creates jobs (government or otherwise).

I've known of people that harbor high hopes for a Hillary Clinton presidency, specifically for space.  I have no idea if that would be true.

Overall what we lack, beyond the agreement for pure research on the ISS and our robotic exploration programs, is a plan for what we do next?  Do we want to focus on one destination, or spend the time to master local space and provide the foundation to go just about anywhere?  One is a short-term payoff, the other a longer-term one.

I like the longer-term one, but politics is not about logic, so it really depends on the forces in play at the time as to what happens after the next Presidential election.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline yg1968

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #13 on: 10/14/2014 08:58 PM »
I've seen no evidence that the Republican party, much less a plank on their platform, wants to push for doing anything in space, including returning to the Moon.  Gingrich brought up the topic during the 2012 cycle and was pummeled from within his own party.

I've known of people that harbor high hopes for a Hillary Clinton presidency, specifically for space.  I have no idea if that would be true.

The lesson learn form Gingrich's fall is to avoid being too specific about NASA during presidential debates. Discussions about going back to the Moon or to Mars is to be avoided during the campaign.

As far as Clinton goes, many said that Bill Clinton didn't care much for space. I don't know if that's also true for Hillary. But Florida is still a swing state. So I would expect both parties to be pro-space in order to get some of the votes in Florida.
« Last Edit: 10/14/2014 09:09 PM by yg1968 »

Offline muomega0

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #14 on: 10/15/2014 05:43 PM »
The direction will be Mars, a new reuseable, launch vehicle independent architecture, with probable participation of the private sector.  The incredibly expendable mission architecture, which essentially uses all expendable rocket and vehicle components and does not leave any useful components in low Mars orbit or Earth orbit for use by the next mission, will be cast aside.  Mars is a very enticing destination for the global space community and it requires new technologies, with many shorter destinations and stepping stones along the way.  They will understand that many challenges lie ahead, so they need an interim goal, like the deep space voyager based at L2 (not L1) to act as a safe haven for lunar (but not stuck in one location), to act as a safe haven for lunar, in case many things do not work out,  and to keep the moon firsters happy  :)  Its a no brainer since it clearly shows a path forward with global consensus.  Visiting an asteroid as a stepping stone is retained.

On-Orbit Assembly and fueling creates an economical architecture that's LV independent
 
It builds upon the successful LOR Apollo concept of Houbolt ""rendezvous and keep weight in orbit"--advance safety from one mission to the next.

If you want to develop a space transportation infrastructure, with reusable landers, the ability to construct and launch Mars and asteroid vehicles, and the ability to utilize advanced space transportation to lift you out of most of the gravity well (electric propulsion and/or tethers), then I think you'll be hard-pressed to find a better staging location than EML2.
     For a trip to and from L1, CEV will need ~700 m/s to get in and out of L1:  1400 m/s.
     For a trip to and from L2 using lunar powered swingbys, CEV would only need ~330 m/s each time: 700 m/s.
     If Mars missions originated from L2, CEV would already have the correct DV to accommodate crew transfers to and from the Mars vehicle.

Its part of a new national policy to consolidate the Atlas/Delta/SLS into a single common LV.

Who will make it happen?   Based on past experience, recall that
- Garver said that SLS should not be built.
- the 2001 to 2008 Congress cast aside reuse for the BFR and "chemically fueled" Mars DRM 5 ::)
- Parts of today's Congress still thinks SLS/Orion is still viable Why Not Orion for Commercial Crew? and
   will demand that the 2010 Act be followed
Will the groups become better informed?  Highly unlikely for a few it would appear, which is a losing position.

Both parties will remove the 3 flaws in the VSE, cast aside heavy lift, and will reach consensus and shift to this new bold, yet economic initiative, actually its already in transition, to the bold new direction...catch the wave...start working on the BEO architecture that includes depots

Perhaps some is in order.
« Last Edit: 11/11/2014 01:14 AM by muomega0 »

Offline Rocket Science

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #15 on: 10/15/2014 05:57 PM »
I've seen no evidence that the Republican party, much less a plank on their platform, wants to push for doing anything in space, including returning to the Moon.  Gingrich brought up the topic during the 2012 cycle and was pummeled from within his own party.

I've known of people that harbor high hopes for a Hillary Clinton presidency, specifically for space.  I have no idea if that would be true.

The lesson learn form Gingrich's fall is to avoid being too specific about NASA during presidential debates. Discussions about going back to the Moon or to Mars is to be avoided during the campaign.

As far as Clinton goes, many said that Bill Clinton didn't care much for space. I don't know if that's also true for Hillary. But Florida is still a swing state. So I would expect both parties to be pro-space in order to get some of the votes in Florida.
I'm going from memory here... Didn't we get X-33 and the morphing from Freedom to ISS under President Clinton? Maybe the HSF part of the ARM  might go away....
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Offline okan170

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #16 on: 10/15/2014 10:57 PM »
The one thing that I suspect may happen is it may change the "Don't even talk about the Moon" policy that is the hallmark of the current administration.  If ANY of the work done goes forward into the next administration, the Moon looks more and more like a cheaper (than Mars) way to expand operations slowly, and one that has lots of potential international interest.

Offline gbaikie

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #17 on: 10/16/2014 01:21 AM »
I thought I'd start a thread that would see what people's opinions are for what the NASA direction may be from the next President, both Republican and Democrat.

Thoughts?
Ok. I don't think it matters much who is president.
The only significant will be what [or if]  they say during their campaign. I suppose that will depend upon
what is the current news.
It seems fairly certain we going to get suborbital flight in 2015. if not, by 2016.
Now what is going to happen within first flights of first 50 people? It's going to be in the news- whether they die or live. Though dying would cause more fever pitch.
So will going to congressional investigation or movie stars flying into space- either will be news.
So that goes into category of whether the space will mentioned by pols during their campaigns.
The dawn Spacecraft will arrive in orbit around another planet by this time.
I expect something interesting from that.
Mars is going to buzzed by comet in about a week- who knows, comets are unpredictable.
SpaceX may continue to have success. Musk bound to do other things.
And we have other billionaires doing stuff.
And of course we have SLS. It will be close to being usable for presidential hopefuls considerations.
Oh I guess a question will be whether Falcon Heavy flies by then- it's possible it flies in 2015 or before
the election begins or right in middle of it.
I don't think whether we in recession [or haven't left it yet] will make much difference. Nor really even economic news gets much much worse whether it will have effect- other than encourage action which could be space related.
So I think Dawn and suborbital will have biggest effect, anyone want to predict what will happen with either or both?



« Last Edit: 10/16/2014 01:22 AM by gbaikie »

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #18 on: 10/16/2014 02:01 AM »
Thoughts?

I think this thread is likely to lead to a lot of wild speculation and is likely to give the mods a headache. Let's see if I'm right (hope not)

What if I start talking about gun control, climate change, intelligent design, and legos?  With a small "l"?
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Predicted NASA direction from next President?
« Reply #19 on: 10/16/2014 07:02 AM »
Going by the actions of the last two presidents before they were elected, I don't think many people predicted what their direction would actually be. Who would have thought that Bush would have started a Lunar exploration program? I think most people were predicting that Obama would reorganise Exploration into something more cost effective, like Direct, instead of advocating for its entire cancellation.

I think it will be the same for the next president. We have no idea what he or she will do. They may just continue with the current program, like Carter with the Space Shuttle. They might try to cancel SLS/Orion and replace it with a development program (like Obama), replace it with the development a new space station (like Reagan) or replace it with a new reusable launch vehicle (like Nixon). Or, they might actually show some actual leadership and give SLS a proper mission of going to the Moon, like Kennedy.
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