NASA - Out of Business Sale
- The Democrats and Republicans in Congress share the blame for this national humiliation. The two parties fall all over each other spending mountains of cash to build a Socialistic welfare state, but in a deliberate act they destroyed our space program.
- Thank God the Russians have a space program so we can beg them for a ride.
From the Los Angeles Times - Does anyone need a 15,000-foot landing strip? How about a place to assemble rocket ships? Or a parachute-packing plant? A launchpad?
Make us an offer, says NASA, which is quietly holding a going-out-of-business sale for the facilities used by its space shuttle program.
The last shuttle flight was in July 2011, when Atlantis made its final touchdown. That orbiter, like its sisters Discovery and Endeavour, is now a museum piece. As soon as some remaining cleanup is finished at Kennedy Space Center, the shuttle program will be history.
That has prompted NASA to advertise a long list of space center facilities and equipment available for use, lease or, in some cases, purchase by the right business.
Among them: Launchpad 39A, where shuttles took off; space in the Vehicle Assembly Building, the 526-foot-tall structure first used to assemble Saturn V-Apollo rockets; the Orbiter Processing Facilities, essentially huge garages where the shuttles were maintained; Hangar N and its high-tech test equipment; the launch control center; and various other buildings and chunks of undeveloped property.
A lot of the stuff needs to be transferred by the end of 2013, when federal maintenance money will run out. When it does, machinery will start to rust, and buildings will deteriorate in the harsh coastal-marsh environment of Cape Canaveral.
The process is mostly secret because NASA has agreed to let bidders make their proposals out of the view of competitors and the public. NASA has at times published official notices seeking proposals and spelled out that they should be space-related, although the agency will consider alternative uses.
But information about who wants to do what may not be revealed until agency officials select finalists.
"The first deals should start coming together in the next six months. We look at what's available, the prospects for commercial space businesses moving into Kennedy facilities and the possible effects on the space center," Riquelme said.
NASA already has deals with Space Florida and Boeing, which is leasing one of the shuttle garages. Boeing, under a Space Florida contract, intends to assemble and refurbish its planned CST-100 capsules that might be used to take up to seven astronauts at a time to the International Space Station.
(Los Angeles Times)