August 18th, 2008

Obama: Let’s go to moon, and maybe Mars Orlando Sentinel

Sen. Barack Obama released a comprehensive space policy Saturday that endorsed sending astronauts back to the moon by 2020 as a possible precursor for going to Mars — the first time he has committed to that goal — and said the reach for the stars should be a U.S.-led international effort.
“Human exploration beyond low-earth orbit should be a long-term goal and investment for all space-faring countries, with America in the lead,” the policy paper said.
The paper promises funding for an additional flight after the space shuttle’s planned retirement in 2010 and to “expedite” development of a successor. But beyond promising funding to “minimize” the gap until a new rocket flies — now not scheduled until 2015 — the plan makes no specific financial commitment.

March 30th, 2005

Student’s project out of this world Orlando Sentinel

At 18, Matthew Draper might just have an answer for which NASA and others have searched for years. “This is the answer to how we [could] live on Mars,” he said of his science fair project, the result of two years of hard work, $44,000 worth of equipment donated by a national company, $2,000 from another company and $2,000 of his own money. The Eustis High School senior said this is the second year he has taken his project to the Lake County Science Fair.

February 7th, 2005

Proposed NASA budget would keep projects moving forward Orlando Sentinel

President Bush proposed a $16.45 billion budget for NASA in 2006 this morning, a 2.4 percent increase over 2005’s. The budget includes more than $4.5 billion for the space shuttle program, an increase of $366 million, mostly to cover the costs of the effort required to return the fleet to orbit this spring.

June 4th, 2003

Advice to NASA supports nuclear-fueled spaceflight Orlando Sentinel

NASA needs to harness the promise of nuclear technology if it hopes to do meaningful work in the solar system, the agency’s top space-science official said Tuesday. Edward Weiler, NASA’s associate administrator for space science, told lawmakers that the space program’s ambitious plan — called Project Prometheus — will enable the agency to do more than has ever been possible. “If we’re going to have a future in the outer solar system, nuclear power is a must,” Weiler told a subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee.

March 17th, 2002

‘Mars on Earth’ site offers chance to explore ways to explore Orlando Sentinel

William J. Clancey tags along when NASA researchers visit a crater 500 miles north of the Arctic Circle to explore its Marslike environment. “The scientists are studying the crater, the geology and biology of this land, and I’m studying the scientists,” Clancey said. He wants to see how they go about their business to develop ways that computers and other devices can be used to help astronauts explore Mars. Clancey, of the University of West Florida’s Institute of Human and Machine Cognition in Pensacola, is on loan to the NASA Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, California.

March 10th, 2002

Poll: Space program generates low enthusiasm in public Orlando Sentinel

Americans are not enthusiastic about an ambitious space program and would cut NASA’s budget before other critical national priorities, an Orlando Sentinel poll shows. The survey found little support for a long-discussed manned mission to Mars and revealed a general sentiment favoring a space program that yields practical research benefits, said Thomas Riehle, president of Ipsos-Reid U.S. Public Affairs, which conducted the national poll for the Sentinel.

April 15th, 2001

NASA scientists mix dreams, research Orlando Sentinel

Hypersonic jets that zoom into orbit. Ships that sail the solar wind. Rockets fueled with antimatter. Cosmic wormholes connecting distant parts of the galaxy. Such far-out ideas once were relegated to Star Trek reruns and science fiction magazines. Now, they’re the focus of serious research by some of the world’s best rocket scientists. Visionaries at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., occasionally still hear muffled snickers when they talk about their more exotic projects. But research sponsored by the center’s Advanced Space Transportation Program eventually could make some of those dreams come true.

February 4th, 2001

History, pop culture and science look to Mars Orlando Sentinel

Jupiter has its enormous size, Saturn has its rings and Pluto has its distance from the sun. But when it comes to planetary popularity, perhaps no other planet than Mars has inspired human imagination for so long. As far as historians know, Babylonians were the first to mention the planet, identifying it with the god of conflict and battle. The Egyptians also made references to the planet, as did the Greeks and the Romans. Even in more-scientifically enlightened times, Mars retained a strong allure, thanks in part to humankind’s incessant desire to discover extraterrestrial life in the void of space.

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