NASA goes back to the basics

I think it is safe to say now that the Space Shuttle as we know it is a thing of the past now. NASA plans to abandon the current design (use bugmenot if they ask for login)for their next generation spacecraft. They are going back to the basic pre-shuttle setup with a rocket and a capsule sitting on top.

It seems that the re-usability of the shuttle did was not that great and flight preparation and maintenance were more expensive than the costs of one-use-only craft. And of course, if you are flying shuttle and the rocket blows up – it blows up in your face. If shit falls off the rocket, it falls on your head… With the new design (see picture) you sit on top of the engine – so you don’t need to worry about the debris at all. Seems sensible to me.

I also like the separation of duties. One rocket will haul all the gear and cargo into space, and the other one will carry the crew. So you get best of both worlds. You get the one super-powerful engine to lift up all your crap into the air, and one super-safe engine to give you a ride. I think this is some good stuff. We definitely need to start that whole space exploration thing again.

If you think about it, it’s really pathetic how little have we done in terms of space conquest since the cold war has ended. I really, really want to see an actual off-earth colony getting established within my lifetime. The chances of this are slim, but hey… Maybe when I’m like 90 I’ll be able to grumble something about those damn martians or mooninites… Eh… One can always dream.

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2 Responses to “NASA goes back to the basics”

  1. Paul Says:

    Hi, I’m glad to hear that common sense has finally prevailed.

    It is amazing that a group of very intelligent people came up with such a ludicrous design in the first place. I’ve blogged on the possible reasons why:

    http://pab-data.blogspot.com/2005/08/space-shuttle-in-trouble-again.html

    Humility is a quality that us technical types could do with a lot more of.

  2. Luke Says:

    Yeah, I agree. Strange stuff…

    But then again, I must say that when I first saw a Space Shuttle I thought it was the most advanced damn thing ever 🙂 I was like – look out space, here we come.

    Looking at it in retrospect I can now say: what the hell were they thinking? lol

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