Why did NASA not replace the space shuttle program with a new one?
At the moment we’re relying on the Russian Soyuz rocket to get to and from the ISS. I mean, apparently we are the most powerful nation on earth with the strongest economy, advanced military and huge global influence but we do not have our own rockets to get into space and rely on Russia. This is truly a joke.
- Ronald 7Lv 72 months agoFavourite answer
I have always thought the same
They had the design
They could have renewed the Project
With more safety and Higher tech
Made tragedies of the past impossible
Instead of going cap in hand to the Ruskies
- 2 months ago
Allow me to introduce you to the United States Congress. It's Congress that stipulates not only what NASA's budget is, but what they can spend it on. And, they can rip that funding away at any moment.
NASA's heyday occurred just prior and up to the first manned lunar landing; since then, their budget has been slashed and cut, with proposals and programs being shelved or cancelled. We *are* doing a lot of science in sending probes to other planets, along with space telescopes and solar monitoring - but that's not progressing the manned program.
Congress is behind the SLS program, but funding for it is somewhat problematic, and - like all new programs - there've been some snags and budget overruns. SpaceX is funding their own manned capsule (as are a couple of other firms), but the drill down is this: If a Congressman is to vote to approve a particular program (like SLS), it has to be beneficial for his district (or probably just him/her directly). So, the best way to do that is to spread the components for the program across many states, so senators and representatives can share a piece of the pie.
It's not a quest for knowledge that drives new programs - it's primarily money... A senator wants to say, "I opened a plant to produce rocket engines for the new system! I've created 1,000 new jobs in my district!" For another senator in another district that doesn't share in the wealth - all he sees is the cost, and his constituents would applaud him voting down something that doesn't benefit his area.
So... it's a trick to get a new program off the ground. It's not a joke - it's politics. If America set it's mind to it - like what happened with Apollo (which had companies also spread over most of America) - if Americans wrote to their representatives and demanded that manned spaceflight become a priority, and gave congress a mandate to get it done.... it would happen.
Until then... NASA continues to get fed from an eyedropper....
- Campbell HaydenLv 72 months ago
1-Word Answer = Obama
If he wasn't so he||-bent on hope & change, and financially
running the U.S. into the ground, he could have taken the
next step in the space program and made himself a hero.
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- busterwasmycatLv 72 months ago
Money, technological reasons, and politics. The Shuttle was not a technologically reliable and economical system and the 1980s and 1990s were a period of a lot of belt-tightening because of Reaganistic restructuring of the federal budget objectives. In effect, the idea to privatize space transportation systems was favored over government-run systems. However, this decision left a hole for US transport needs in the transition from public funding and retirement of the Shuttle to provision of private space transport systems. We are now only ramping up the private systems. The only way to get into space was to rely on foreign options since we had none od our own.
It might be "truly a joke" but that is what our government leaders decided we were going to do. This is, in effect, the joke that comes from desire to cut taxes without touching defense expenditures. NASA was a good source of cuts for those who wanted to cut taxes.
It isn't like people did not argue against it. Where were you when all this was happening? Too little to matter, I suppose. Well, then now perhaps you can see how important it is to make your voice heard. We tried, we failed. Same basic argument is still happening now. You want programs? Tax money is how they are paid for. Cutting taxes for the rich and running a trillion dollar annual deficit isn't solving the problem.It is making it so other programs will have to be cut or our taxes will have to leap, because the debt will need to be paid. that is the entire point of tax cuts in the conservative mind: run up the debt so we have to cut those pesky "entitlement" programs that the people want. Can't get rid of them directly, so squeeze them out financially.
- oil field trashLv 72 months ago
The space shuttle was not the most economic way to get to the space station and back. Rockets are much cheaper and can be up graded easier than a shuttle.
The shuttle was originally approved because it was very complicated and that let lots of senators and congressmen get a piece of the pie for their state. You notice the Russians have been using rockets all along because they are cheaper and easier to use.
- CarolOklaNolaLv 72 months ago
The rockets for the Space Launch System ha e been in production since September 2012. The Shuttles were never intended to go to the moon. Ths military very likely does have .mini shuttles. The Orion space capsule has also been in production for years. Both ha d been a x are being flight tested, usually successfully. There may be no Moon landing in 2021, but Apollo 8 and 10 did not have landings, Apollo 9was docking maneuvers..
Replacing the ceramic tiles on the Shuttles after each flight is a custom job. It became too expensive to main gain and too expensive in lives, and not just astro aunts lives. Some whistle blower engineers and scientists died under very suspicious circumstances.
In addition, Congress became anti-science in 2011 after the 2010 elections.
- billrussell42Lv 72 months ago
yes, it is a joke. As to why, you would have to ask your congressman.