Bolden should know no plan survives contact with the enemy

by | Mar 4, 2010 | commercial launch services, Constellation, International Space Station, NASA, Space Shuttle | 1 comment

Former US Marine Corp Major-General Charles Bolden must by now be reflecting upon the military axiom, no plan survives contact with an enemy. In this case Bolden’s enemies are the Congressmen and women hell bent on not accepting the president Barack Obama spaceflight plan

Now the Wall Street Journal reports of a NASA memo talking about plan Bs

So what could Bolden’s boys and girls come up with? They might want to use the draft bill’s contents as a guide. Why not pre-empt the bill and have an ISS assessment carried out immediately that will address the ideas of Shuttle extension and crew and cargo transportation needs for the flying laboratory?

Let’s not beat around the bush, the politicians are concerned about jobs both within NASA and of those supplying the agency. They want centers maintained and industry supported. So what could be done considering a $19 billion budget?

  • Wind down Shuttle slowly with fewer flights per year and a shift to two orbiters
  • Augustine recommended a flight proven booster for the commercial crew program, use NASA resources to help develop the modified Atlas V for that
  • Rapidly select a heavy lift concept and fund it for post-2020 deployment
  • Rename Orion the Deep Space Exploration Vehicle by adding a habitat module to it 
  • lastly provide a sliding scale of delivery based on NASA funding increases that Congress can understand

To keep Shuttle going will avoid massive job losses at a time when there are mid term elections. At least adding the mooted STS-135 flight would give some workers a breathing space. With this heavy lift, Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle and related Orion work there is plenty for the NASA centers to be getting on with and entrepreneurial companies still have a chance with crew and cargo transport

About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to

Related Articles

Atlas V launches Trojan asteroid surveyor Lucy on mission for NASA…then has trouble locking out one of her solar arrays

An Atlas V rocket from ULA (United Launch Alliance) has launched a Lockheed Martin-built, NASA Discovery-class spacecraft into orbit. Lift-off Read more

Landsat 9 has been launched to continue NASA Earth sciences project

A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket has carried the NASA Landsat 9 (and four co-payloads) into low Earth Read more

ULA launches SBIRS GEO-5 to bolster American missile launch detection capability

The United Launch Alliance (ULA) successfully launched the SBIRS GEO-5, TDO 3 and TDO 4 satellites into a GTO orbit Read more

Delta IV Heavy launches NRO L-82 reconnaissance satellite

A Delta IV Heavy rocket, operated by the United Launch Alliance (ULA) launched the NRO L-82 payload into orbit on Read more

Seradata Space Conference 2021: Full agenda is now available

Seradata has now completed its agenda for its two-half day (UK afternoons) virtual conference on 23-24 June 2021.  In addition, Read more

Amazon selects ULA Atlas V launches for upcoming LEO constellation Project Kuiper

Amazon has made its first official contract award for its future LEO satellite internet constellation – known as Project Kuiper. The award, Read more

US Space Force hands out four launch contracts: two apiece to ULA and SpaceX

On 9 March 2021 the US Space Force (USSF) awarded launch contracts for four upcoming missions planned to launch in Read more

NRO L-44 mission is launched successfully by upgraded Delta IV Heavy

The NRO L-44 (ORION 10) spacecraft of the US National Reconnaissance Office, was finally launched by an upgraded Delta IV Read more