Exploration plan doesn’t fit in current budget, panel says

Posted: August 13, 2009 in Ares I, Ares V, Delta IV, ISS, Manned Space, NASA

NASA is underfunded. They need an extra $50 billion or so across the next ten years to do what they’re supposed to do.

Given the anticipated national-level direction and funding trend for this sort of discretionary endeavor, NASA should expect to be riding on a man-rated version of the Delta IV and cancel their Ares programs.

There will be little Congressional consensus towards plussing NASA up to perform their “program of record.”

And let’s consider the ISS as a point of comparison. As Taylor Dinerman reports, the ISS went from an $8 billion program estimate in 1984 to an actual program costing about $100 billion as we speak. So that $50 billion estimate the Augustine panel has come up might well end up being much more than they’ve anticipated.

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