Meanwhile, On the Space Exploration Front (or, And Now for Something Completely Different)

Move over Soyuz (cf. December 12), it looks like NASA has a new heavy-lift rocket ready to be on the launch pad next year.  And now there’s some talk that its maiden voyage could be a manned one.  No, not to Mars yet, just a lunar gallery-1458845021-slsloop-around for now, but apparently this is the one that may be used to go there eventually as well.  But see for yourself via “NASA Is Considering a Manned Flight for First SLS Launch,” by Jay Bennett, on POPULARMECHANICS.COM by pressing here.  And if that is intriguing see, also by Jay Bennett, “All You Need to Know NASA’s Mammoth SLS Rocket in Less Than 3 Minutes” by pressing here.


  1. Hasn’t Trump & company stopped NASA’s funding yet? They will, I’m sure but they haven’t gotten around to it. They must have an agreement with Putin (so the Russians can get to Mars first) in exchange for certain favors from the Trump administration.

    amIright? Right? Okay I shouldn’t post political stuff. But hey, it is a wonder.

  2. The article suggests that it’s the Trump administration’s idea to make the first flight (rather than the second, as additionally planned) manned, though it also points out that could cause delays in the program, as well as more risk. But one will see.

    • I’m sorry, I was knee-jerk reacting to this news without reading the article. So far, what he’s done once in office is like jump in up and running and fall into a muddled mire — consequences to pay for not being familiar with how things work in the highest position politically speaking –that’s what an NPR discussion was getting to that I heard this morning. Hmmm.

      • “Jump in . . . muddled mire” could still be what comes out of it. See quote below, that suggests he wants big results now (like the first mission being manned — and all in his first term) without necessarily stopping to listen to others’ (experts’) opinions.

  3. Here’s the quotation (one will see that it’s not exactly all science for science’s sake): “The potential shift in plans for the SLS, to skip the unmanned flight test, are likely due to agendas set by the new Trump administration’s NASA transition team. A recent report also announced that the Trump administration is considering a proposal to launch another Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission. The administration is reportedly interested in pursuing missions that expand public-private partnerships in the spaceflight industry and can be achieved within the president’s first term.”

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