NASA Day @ school

pointed this out to me: It’s the Lord of the Rings as an RPG.

Shoulder still hurting, but for all that a pretty good day.

We had a speaker from NASA come to school today. It was pretty much same-old, same-old as last time (this woman is a sister to one of my colleagues, and she comes about once every other year). The big news was President Bush’s new program, which she admitted privately could probably not be done on NASA’s current budget. She was hoping that the US could get a new spaceplane/space operational vehicle in orbit pretty soon; her big worry was that there would be up to a 4-year gap between when the Space Shuttle was retired and a new vehicle was ready for orbital operations. That’s assuming that another one doesn’t burn up between now and then of course.

I think there are three shuttles left? Maybe it’s four, I forget. thought there were three left, though, and he tends to be right about such things.

My friend Nik reminds me that there were six made: Enterprise, Challenger, Columbia, Atlantis, Discovery, and Endeavor. Enterprise was a prototype, we think, and never went to space. Challenger and Columbia are gone, and were not replaced. That makes three. Three shuttles to finish assembling the space station, and then up to four years of not being able to use the space station? Hmmm.

This NASA visitor spoke of plans for a CEV, a Crew Exploration Vehicle. It would be equipped to go to the moon, or Mars. She didn’t outline any plans for its cargo capacity, crew requirements, or capabilities, but it will have to be a fairly impressive list. She talked also about her own reasons for wanting to be in NASA, and her desire to go to Mars as a colonist, and to not return to Earth. She said she would migrate to the moon today if it were possible.

I want to go, too.

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