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What Is The REAL Reason NASA Is Ending The Space Shuttle Program?

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posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:23 PM
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That is a question that has been running through my mind over the past couple of weeks. Moreso in the past couple days due to the many recent news stories regarding the Sun and what our so called "experts" are theorizing about its current cycle & activity.

If you are not familiar with what was announced and reported this week regarding the Sun, here is an ATS Thread that has a lot of great information within it. The "official announcement" is posted on page 4 of the thread.

ATS Thread - Major Result On Sunspot Cycle To Be Announced On Tuesday

Now we all know that the "official" answer from NASA and the government regarding the shutdown of the Space Shuttle Program, is due to lack of money. But we all also know that when they want something, magically they can make money appear to fund whatever they like.

Alright, now let's get into the nitty gritty of it all. We'll start with NASA. In 2007:


At that time, a sharply divided panel believed solar minimum would come in March 2008 followed by either a strong solar maximum in 2011 or a weak solar maximum in 2012. Competing models gave different answers, and researchers were eager for the sun to reveal which was correct.

"It turns out that none of our models were totally correct," says Dean Pesnell of the Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA's lead representative on the panel. "The sun is behaving in an unexpected and very interesting way."


Moving along to 2009 with new predictions:


Solar Cycle 24 will peak, they say, in May 2013 with a below-average number of sunspots. "If our prediction is correct, Solar Cycle 24 will have a peak sunspot number of 90, the lowest of any cycle since 1928 when Solar Cycle 16 peaked at 78," says panel chairman Doug Biesecker of the NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center.


This next quote is very interesting to me:


"Even a below-average cycle is capable of producing severe space weather," points out Biesecker. "The great geomagnetic storm of 1859, for instance, occurred during a solar cycle of about the same size we’re predicting for 2013."


And further down into the article:


Low solar activity has a profound effect on Earth’s atmosphere, allowing it to cool and contract. Space junk accumulates in Earth orbit because there is less aerodynamic drag. The becalmed solar wind whips up fewer magnetic storms around Earth's poles. Cosmic rays that are normally pushed back by solar wind instead intrude on the near-Earth environment. There are other side-effects, too, that can be studied only so long as the sun remains quiet.


Source - NASA - New Solar cycle Prediction May 29, 2009

Now I would like to direct your attention to the media and their reports regarding the end of the Space Shuttle Program.


Contrary to what you may think, NASA is to receive a budget increase of some six billion dollars (although much of it may be to adjust for inflation) over the next couple years, thanks to the Obama administration.


Ok, so there IS money! But what is this???


With the signing of the Launch Services Purchase Act of 1990, under George H.W. Bush NASA is required to purchase launch services for its payloads from commercial providers when such services are needed. So what does that mean? While there are a number of factors, it means that NASA saves a significant amount of money by going with commercial services. Not only that, but should commercial spaceflight alternatives be safer than any existing NASA program, then that service should be considered instead.


"Safer than any existing NASA program"??? Apparantly the Russians do indeed have something safer than the shuttle.


NASA recently signed a deal with Russia for $753 million to provide NASA with 12 round trips to the International Space Station at a cost of about $62.7 million per seat. This signals an 8.5% increase; however, statistically speaking, the Soyuz spacecraft is one of the safest spacecrafts ever created, and is safer than NASA's Space Shuttle.


The article continues to discuss how NASA has more contracts with privatized corporations for trips to the ISS over the coming years.

Source - PC World - The Shuttle Program Is Winding Down. What Next?

During the GOP's first debate on Monday night... a few of the candidates tackled this subject.

Newt Gingrich:


Well, sadly — and I say this sadly, because I'm a big fan of going into space and I actually worked to get the shuttle program to survive at one point — NASA has become an absolute case study in why bureaucracy can't innovate.

If you take all the money we've spent at NASA since we landed on the moon and you had applied that money for incentives to the private sector, we would today probably have a permanent station on the moon, three or four permanent stations in space, a new generation of lift vehicles. And instead what we've had is bureaucracy after bureaucracy after bureaucracy, and failure after failure.

I think it's a tragedy, because younger Americans ought to have the excitement of thinking that they, too, could be part of reaching out to a new frontier.

You know, you'd asked earlier, John, about this idea of limits because we're a developed country. We're not a developed country. The scientific future is going to open up, and we're at the beginning of a whole new cycle of extraordinary opportunities. And, unfortunately, NASA is standing in the way of it, when NASA ought to be getting out of the way and encouraging the private sector.


Tim Pawlenty:


I think the space program has played a vital role for the United States of America.

In the context of our budget challenges, it can be refocused and re-prioritized, but I don't think we should be eliminating the space program. We can partner with private providers to get more economies of scale and scale it back, but I don't think we should eliminate the space program.


And lastly, Mitt Romney:


I think fundamentally there are some people — and most of them are Democrats, but not all — who really believe that the government knows how to do things better than the private sector ... And they happen to be wrong.


All interesting statements from these fellows. But the following is my favorite part of this article when discussing NASA's future:


NASA is retiring its shuttle fleet to make way for a new space exploration program aimed at sending humans to an asteroid by 2020 and to Mars in the 2030s.


Calling Bruce Willis?!


Source - FOX News - Newt Gingrich On Space Exploration

The final Space Shuttle mission is scheduled to launch in July. Just a few weeks away.

Are we really supposed to believe that this halt in sending our astronauts into space using our OWN program, is due to lack of funds? Due to lack of innovation? Relying on "private corporations" developing their own space programs? Relying on the Russians?????????

This is all so perplexing to me. And frankly, I do not buy it for one moment! As a dear friend of mine said...Why did the Mayans place so much emphasis on this present solar cycle. Scientists says solar cycle 24 is fading?

A quick look into the history of our current cycle, solar cycle 24, as it has released the most power solar flares ever.

Source - NASCA - November 4, 2003 - Largest Solar Flare Ever Recorded

On June 7, 2011, the Sun had the largest particle explosion that has ever been seen.

Source - National Geographic - Solar Flare Sparks Biggest Eruption Ever Seen On The sun

I honestly have no idea what is coming or what is going to happen. What I do know, is that I do not agree with what these "experts & scientists", along with our government, are trying to lead us to believe.

NASA has remained silent. There have been no press conferences discussing these things. Nor have they said anything regarding this solar cycle breaking records, unlike anything we have ever seen. All we know for sure, is that after the July Shuttle Mission, they are more or less, closing the door.

Why? What do the REALLY know? And why are they hiding it?




posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:27 PM
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How about the fact that it is 1970's technology. Maybe the platforms are just too darn old and wearing out? Maybe they are too expensive to replace right now. I mean we are fighting multiple wars and giving welfare to a plethora of illegal aliens after all.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:27 PM
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Probably we're all gonna be sitting in the dark, the sun will wipe everything out and then Niburu comes, boom. We're all dead.
Is that what you wanted to hear ?



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:28 PM
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Originally posted by sonofliberty1776
How about the fact that it is 1970's technology. Maybe the platforms are just too darn old and wearing out? Maybe they are too expensive to replace right now. I mean we are fighting multiple wars and giving welfare to a plethora of illegal aliens after all.


You have a valiant point though.
Amazing they had enough gas to come home after Barry cut the funding.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:28 PM
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They obviously have something else to fly.

We have no need to know.

Besides, it's the old "Were Broke Routine".

Walk away from that Space Station.

Not a chance.

edit on 16-6-2011 by whyamIhere because: spelling



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:31 PM
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Well i'm not seeing the connection your making between the space shuttle and solar problems at all but in regards to the shuttle service being disbanded it makes sense.

The amount of money it was costing to launch and upkeep for them weighed against the gains we were receiving from operating them did not justify keeping it going. Also in regards to research we can send satellites or rovers to do achieve the same results so while we might lose some scientific knowledge that loss does not justify the cost of keeping them up there.

As for sending people to mars or asteroids that is something most politicians pay lip service too but in reality it never comes to anything so I believe that our best shot at eventually colonizing space will be from the private sector.

Give corporations an incentive to go up there, allow them the tools to make it easy, and show them the profit available and you will see us in deep space at a fraction of the cost and half the time it would take NASA to get us up there.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:37 PM
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reply to post by UtahRosebud
 


In my current position, I'm dealing directly with Federal and State entities. I can tell you that the decision to ground the fleet, and require NASA to use commercial services is by far the absolute best thing that can happen to space exploration.

Now, let me explain..

Do you recall the line from Armageddon where they are sitting on the pad, and one guy says "What's to worry about we are sitting on millions of components all of which are assembled by the lowest bidder". This statement is SO TRUE.

When you want to do something as a government employee, you have to buy things from one of these:

1. A "Sole Source" contract. This can only be granted when you have filed (in triplicate) all of the required paperwork, and a committee of people approve it. This takes MONTHS or YEARS to get accomplished.

2. A Request for Proposal. This process also takes months or years, and yes it goes to the lowest bidder, whomever this is.

3. A convenience contract. This depends on either an independent organization doing a RFP and then allowing other government entities to be a "rider", and another organization that adds language to THEIR contract results from a RFP, which authorize them to use this agreement. Oh, and these expire every 3 years.

So, technology literally wastes away during this process.

Instead, they are allowing independent companies the ability to innovate, and provide solutions that are up to date, and are cost effective.

I'm looking forward to seeing what they come up with.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:38 PM
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reply to post by UtahRosebud
 


You answered your question in the third paragraph:


Now we all know that the "official" answer from NASA and the government regarding the shutdown of the Space Shuttle Program, is due to lack of money. But we all also know that when they want something, magically they can make money appear to fund whatever they like.


(Emphasis mine) They don't want the Shuttle.

Politicians in general, and Barack Obama in particular don't give a damn about space exploration.

Your whole post is basically attempting to figure out a non-stupid ulterior motive for what is, in fact a series of stupid decisions. It's as though you expect political decisions to make sense.

That's... quaint. Your faith in government is greater than mine.
edit on 16-6-2011 by Saint Exupery because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:38 PM
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Originally posted by Heartisblack
Probably we're all gonna be sitting in the dark, the sun will wipe everything out and then Niburu comes, boom. We're all dead.
Is that what you wanted to hear ?


Shhh! Keep it under your hat. Tick a lock.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:46 PM
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Originally posted by UtahRosebud


I urge you to take a thorough look through this thread, which provides compelling
evidence to indicate the the whole shuttle program, from its inception, was an
enormous deception.

Nasa Shuttle Fakery Deception

This evidence blows me away.
The implications, if true, are vast.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:47 PM
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I have often sat and wondered why, if they are going to discontinue the shuttles, why not send at least two up on a trajectory path to the unknown......if they are indeed no longer of service, just send them up and let them go.....

How incredible would that be to see one drift off into one area as another goes the opposite direction....I apologize for being in a rush and just posting that possibility as I could expand for days on these thoughts....perhaps I will do so later, however, just think about the possibilities of that.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:48 PM
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Originally posted by savageheart
I have often sat and wondered why, if they are going to discontinue the shuttles, why not send at least two up on a trajectory path to the unknown......if they are indeed no longer of service, just send them up and let them go.....

How incredible would that be to see one drift off into one area as another goes the opposite direction....I apologize for being in a rush and just posting that possibility as I could expand for days on these thoughts....perhaps I will do so later, however, just think about the possibilities of that.


And if they put a guy named Buck Rogers in it that would really be a hoot.




posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:49 PM
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Originally posted by sonofliberty1776
How about the fact that it is 1970's technology. Maybe the platforms are just too darn old and wearing out? Maybe they are too expensive to replace right now. I mean we are fighting multiple wars and giving welfare to a plethora of illegal aliens after all.


Excellent points! I too have wondered those things myself. However we have had lots of time to work on improvements and moving forward with our technology in this area. I'm sure that is all a big secret as well... but I personally do not recall them ever speaking to this, or even giving us the slightest hint that improvements have been worked on.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:55 PM
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Originally posted by Heartisblack
Probably we're all gonna be sitting in the dark, the sun will wipe everything out and then Niburu comes, boom. We're all dead.
Is that what you wanted to hear ?


Actually no. LOL

Sadly, I don't think we will ever know what the "truth" is, whatever that may be.

I do welcome all thoughts and opinions, in hopes of having a great conversation. Knowledge is power. We all have brains. It's possible we could have a very enlightening conversation here. It's also possible it could be dangerous. I suppose time will tell.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 05:56 PM
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reply to post by UtahRosebud
 


Look up Orion. Boeing has a nearly complete module already constructed. The heavy lift rockets were going to use the Shuttle's components, and surplus. Funding was cut by Obama.



Scale comparisons.



Module configurations.



A simple NASA search will show you much more and actual photos.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 06:01 PM
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reply to post by UtahRosebud
 


Don't be so conspiracy minded, its kind of really really hard to heavy lift unnoticed by millions of people that would live within hundreds of miles from a launch site, or the myriad of space observation and surveillance governments and agencies and amateur astronomers in this world. Just because you might not know the actual payload doesn't mean anyone can launch a heavy lift rocket unnoticed anymore, or even in the 70's.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 06:01 PM
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reply to post by Illustronic
 

That is all well and good, but we did that in the 60's. Where are the space planes? Where are the rail guns for heavy lifting? We should have that by now. I cannot believe we are going backwards like that. It makes no sense.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 06:02 PM
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Originally posted by matadoor
reply to post by UtahRosebud
 


In my current position, I'm dealing directly with Federal and State entities. I can tell you that the decision to ground the fleet, and require NASA to use commercial services is by far the absolute best thing that can happen to space exploration.

Now, let me explain..

Do you recall the line from Armageddon where they are sitting on the pad, and one guy says "What's to worry about we are sitting on millions of components all of which are assembled by the lowest bidder". This statement is SO TRUE.

When you want to do something as a government employee, you have to buy things from one of these:

1. A "Sole Source" contract. This can only be granted when you have filed (in triplicate) all of the required paperwork, and a committee of people approve it. This takes MONTHS or YEARS to get accomplished.

2. A Request for Proposal. This process also takes months or years, and yes it goes to the lowest bidder, whomever this is.

3. A convenience contract. This depends on either an independent organization doing a RFP and then allowing other government entities to be a "rider", and another organization that adds language to THEIR contract results from a RFP, which authorize them to use this agreement. Oh, and these expire every 3 years.

So, technology literally wastes away during this process.

Instead, they are allowing independent companies the ability to innovate, and provide solutions that are up to date, and are cost effective.

I'm looking forward to seeing what they come up with.



Thank you for sharing that... and it does make sense.

I too am looking foward to seeing what they come up with. However it's the timing of it all that bothers me. Halting during this solar cycle. Whether it's at a maximum or a minimum is obviously debatable from contradicting findings and reports. Which is why I am posing the question and sharing my thoughts.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 06:02 PM
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reply to post by UtahRosebud
 


it's very simple answer ....they have technology way beyond curent space shutle .They just waiting for right moment to show the world ....possible they will use 2012 event to do so. Just my though.



posted on Jun, 16 2011 @ 06:02 PM
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Who is behind Obama's shocking decision to end the moon mission? You would never guess.




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