Despite the recent publicity about more Ares V variants being the subject of NASA studies a little bit of good news for the Shuttle derived heavy lift crowd eeked out this week in the latest edition of Johnson Space Center’s 8th Floor News

shuttle hlv_NASA W560.JPG
credit: NASA / caption: can it compete with Ares V lite?

The 8th Floor News says “Briefing included hardware and machining tools at [Michoud Assembly Facility] that are ready for excess.  [External tank manufacturing] Hardware will not be removed until the Agency heavy lift vehicle direction is better understood.”

Hyperbola understands that the hardware is now to stay until a notional date of March 2010 but that has no bearing on the actual decision timeframe that the Obama administration will follow

So much for Floridian Senator Bill Nelson’s ideas about a late November Obama spaceflight vision announcement