posted on May, 28 2004 @ 02:35 AM
The effort to save the Hubble Space Telescope by 26 Astronauts has been joined by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas who sent a letter, along with the
Astronauts petition, urging President Bush to reconsider the decision to let the telescope die.
In January, NASA administrator Sean O'Keefe canceled a shuttle mission slated for 2006 to service Hubble. The decision came shortly after Bush
announced a new space exploration initiative centered on completing the international space station, then retiring the space shuttle and working on
new spaceships bound for the moon and Mars.
Outraged Hubble supporters launched a drive on Capitol Hill and in cyberspace to try to salvage the $5.6 billion telescope. O'Keefe said his
decision, while unpopular, was justified by cost and scheduling priorities and the risk to astronauts in the aftermath of the February 2003 Columbia
accident that killed seven.
But after the head of the Columbia Accident Investigation Board said a shuttle mission to Hubble would be only slightly more risky than a mission to
the space station, O'Keefe agreed to seek the advice of the National Research Council.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
I can only hope that this will have some impact on the decision not to service Hubble. The new instruments for the mission have already been made and
are ready to go. Hubble should be saved so that we do not lose the unique capabilites that it has. Quote from the Astronauts "We, the real
risk-takers, believe the attendant risks of the Hubble servicing mission are no more than the 90 previous manned missions to similar orbits, and are
justified by the Hubble Space Telescope's immense contributions to the space sciences."
[Edited on 5-28-2004 by Valhall]