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Eric Berger, Monday, 4-26-15 April 28, 2015

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Eric Berger, Monday, 4-26-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2462-BWB-2015-04-27.mp3

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Guest:  Eric Berger.  Topics:  Space policy, NASA’s future, commercial space, human spaceflight challenges, & lots more. Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

We welcomed Eric Berger to the program for a wide ranging discussion on US space policy, NASA, our space future, commercial space and more.  During the first segment of our 1 hour 37 minute show, Eric started the discussion by talking about his early interest in space, his contacting NASA as a child, getting back a great set of photos and other information and being hooked and excited about space ever since.  Some of the early topics in this segment included his surprise that we are not yet beyond low earth orbit with manned spaceflight, then he addressed why it is taking so long to go to Mars , why Mars is the next big step for humans and why going to Mars is so hard.  In his discussion of these topics, he referenced Elon Musk and the SpaceX Mars plans, even Mars One.  I asked Eric for his perspective on the NASA ARM mission which led to one of many discussion of NASA budget constraints and the idea that this or that project is all that can be done within the budget permitted by Congress.  Eric started getting lots of listener emails.  Jenkins wrote in saying that its not the budget that is the problems, the choices we make as a country regarding how we spend money that is the problem.  Eric then referenced the human spaceflight study released last year by the NRC regarding the likelihood that we will be living with tight NASA budgets for the foreseeable future.  Paul in New Mexico asked Eric about the impact of commercial space on policy and NASA.  Eric said it was an important impact so don’t miss his full statement.  Later in the segment, we talked about his seven part “Adrift” series last year and I asked him what his biggest surprise was in researching the articles for the series.  He said it was finding a shift in his view on SLS and that SLS could very well be an important part of our spaceflight future but that it needs to be funded to launch real programs.  He also said that maybe Falcon Heavy could do most of what SLS could do, especially in the Earth-Moon systems but that remains to be seen.  We then talked about the time it took to do various parts of Apollo compared to how much time it takes to do just about anything in space today.  Michael Listner called to talk about needing both NASA & commercial space and some realities involved in policy and space issues.  As the segment was ending, a Portland listener asked if competition with China might develop and force the US to spend more and do more in space.  Don’t miss Eric’s answer.

In the second segment, Eric was asked about space settlement being the goal and the purpose of our National Space Policy through a change in law per March Storm and other groups who are advocating this.  Eric was OK with space settlement but listen to his comments for the full context of his message.  He also said it was hard to figure out what to do with SLS but that some changes might be a full ten years out from today.  We talked about space technology advancements and then Gerald Driggers called in to say we had lots more work to do. For example, we talked about the need to fly a centrifuge in space to determine the gravity RX for humans.  The issue of the lack of space leadership came up from the White House down to the congress.  Many times our guest said it would take a change in leadership to get a change in space leadership but that just changing leadership does not mean the new leader(s) will care about or prioritize space.  Regarding commercial space, he went a bit deeper in this segment.  He said there was lots of commercial space activity but that NASA was still the center of it.  He made the case for the industry needing a broader base than just NASA.  I asked about a Europa mission and another listener asked he could articulate the Senator Ted Cruz view on space policy.  We talked timelines for humans to Mars and for a return to the Moon, he was asked if NASA should be eliminated in favor for a return to something like the old NACA, then Benny in Denver asked about the Texas spaceport facilities being developed for SpaceX and the Blue Origin facility.  As we neared the end of the program, Eric again stressed the difficulty in going to Mars, he looked back at our space history including Gemini 4, and he talked about the Obama policy from 2010 about not going back to the Moon though many in NASA do want to go back to the moon.  Bottom line was Mars around 2050.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog. You can reach Eric through me or the Houston Chronicle.

The John Batchelor Show Hotel Mars, Wednesday, 10-16-13 October 17, 2013

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The John Batchelor Show Hotel Mars, Wednesday, 10-16-13

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2106-BWB-2013-10-16.mp3

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Guests: John Batchelor, Dr. Joan Johnson-Freese, Gordon Chang Dr. David Livingston:  Topics:  ITAR, NASA & Chinese restriction, Kepler Conference at AMES.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We do not permit the commercial use of any Space Show program or part thereof, nor do we permit Space Show programs to be edited, placed on YouTube, or other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted in news articles, papers, academic & research work but must be cited or referenced in the proper citation format. Contact Dr. Livingston for questions about our copyright and trademark policies which we do enforce.  This program is archived on The Space Show website, podcasting, and blog sites with permission from John Batchelor. Please visit the John Batchelor Show website for more information about this fine program, www.johnbatchelorshow.com.  Remember, your Amazon Purchases Can Help Support The Space Show/OGLF (www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm).

 During our 11 minute plus discussion, John, Dr. Joan Johnson-Freese, Gordon Chang  and I talked about recent restrictions placed on Chinese students and space industry professionals in attending the Kepler Conference to be held at NASA Ames.  We talked ITAR in general, the Chinese space program which is not a civil program, ITAR’s lack of standards and enforcement, and related issues.  We also discussed related national security issues and choices available to NASA based on congressional actions on these issues.

Please post any comments/questions you might have on The Space Show blog.  You can contact any of  us through drspace@thespaceshow.com.

Marcia Smith, Sunday, 11-27-11 November 28, 2011

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Marcia Smith, Sunday, 11-27-11

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1661-BWB-2011-11-27.mp3

GuestSearch:  Marcia Smith.  Topics:  U.S. Space Policy and budget issues.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. The Space Show/OGLF is now engaged in its annual fundraising drive. Please see & act upon our appeal at https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com/2011/11/21/space-show-2011-fundraising-campaign.  We welcomed back Marcia Smith of SpacePolicyOnline.com to discuss the recently passed Minibus FY 2012 NASA budget as well as some of the issues for space policy as a result of the failure of the Supercommittee.  Here are some specific URLs from SpacePolicyOnline.com that you will find useful for this discussion as well as understanding what is going on:  1) Re the Minibus:   www.spacepolicyonline.com/pages/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2008:minibus-signed-into-law&catid=67:news&Itemid=27; 2) Re the Supercommittee: www.spacepolicyonline.com/pages/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2016:the-day-after-whats-next-for-nasa-after-the-supercommittee-failure&catid=67:news&Itemid=27; 3) The NASA FY 2012 Budget: www.spacepolicyonline.com/pages/images/stories/NASAs_FY2012_Budget_Request.pdf.  We started our discussion with the statement that we are in “unchartered territory.”  Ms. Smith described the Poison Pill which goes into effect from 2013-2021 regarding pending budget cuts which will be significant but are not clearly understood at this time. There might be a 7-8% across the board cuts.  The cuts also impact discretionary spending, not just defense or some entitlement programs.  Ms. Smith explained this to us so don’t miss the discussion.  NASA’s FY 2012 budget was down about 4% from what the President sought.  Commercial crew was cut by about one-half to $406 million. Marcia confirmed that thought is being given to funding only one commercial company due to the reduction in funding. We also discussed the current pricing for buying rides on the Soyuz to the ISS as compared to the current pricing quoted for the Space X Dragon.  Other topics in this segment includes SLS, MPCV and crew transportation in general.  We talked about funding for the SLS and the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) in the FY 12 budget.  Ms. Smith reported to us that NASA Administrator Bolden recently testified that the three top priorities for NASA were SLS/MPCV, ISS, and the JWST.  Marcia was asked about the OMB and their role in the budget process, specifically concerning future Mars missions.  In our second segment, we talked more about the Minibus bill and some of the specific funding project within the FY 12 budget.  Dave called in with a most interesting perspective on the issues from within NASA, asking us to focus on more than just the budget lines.  Don’t miss what Dave had to say.  As we approached the end of the program, we talked about DOD and National Security Space Policy  using NOAA and the DOD NPOESS satellite programs as an example of the challenges ahead.  Please post your comments and questions on The Space Show blog URL above. You can email Ms. Smith through www.spacepolicyonline.com.