NASA ponders future without shuttles

Mar 10, 2008
NASA logo

U.S. space officials are concerned NASA will have to rely on other countries to carry astronauts into space after its three space shuttles are retired.

NASA plans to retire its aging space shuttles in 2010 because of their high cost and safety concerns, with nothing scheduled to replace them until at least 2015, The Washington Post reported. That means there will be no way to transport astronauts and cargo to the International Space Station without having to pay another country to do it.

Right now, Russia is the only country that can fly humans to the space station. "We will be largely dependent on the Russians, and that is a terrible place for the United States to be. I'm worried and many others are worried." NASA Administrator Michael Griffin told the newspaper.

NASA's current budget calls for spending $2.6 billion for transportation to the space station between fiscal 2009 and 2013.

Copyright 2008 by United Press International

Explore further: SpaceX launches supplies to space station (Update)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA approves space station supply launch

Apr 13, 2014

NASA is pressing ahead with Monday's planned launch of a supply ship despite a critical computer outage at the International Space Station, determining the situation is safe.

Recommended for you

SpaceX launches supplies to space station (Update)

3 hours ago

The SpaceX company returned to orbit Friday, launching fresh supplies to the International Space Station after more than a month's delay and setting the stage for urgent spacewalking repairs.

Sun emits a mid-level solar flare

4 hours ago

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 9:03 a.m. EDT on April 18, 2014, and NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured images of the event. Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful ...

Impact glass stores biodata for millions of years

6 hours ago

(Phys.org) —Bits of plant life encapsulated in molten glass by asteroid and comet impacts millions of years ago give geologists information about climate and life forms on the ancient Earth. Scientists ...

The importance of plumes

6 hours ago

The Hubble Space Telescope is famous for finding black holes. It can pick out thousands of galaxies in a patch of sky the size of a thumbprint. The most powerful space telescope ever built, the Hubble provided ...

Ceres and Vesta Converge in Virgo

9 hours ago

Don't let them pass you by. Right now and continuing through July, the biggest and brightest asteroids will be running on nearly parallel tracks in the constellation Virgo and so close together they'll easily ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

superhuman
not rated yet Mar 11, 2008
>We will be largely dependent on the Russians, and that is a terrible place for the United States to be. I'm worried and many others are worried.

Haha, I bet Russians are happy.

On a serious note I'm a bit surprised that NASA didn't come up with any replacement vehicle yet or at least a plan to prolong the space shuttle service until the next transport is ready. One would think that having the ability to send astronauts into space should be one of their priorities.

Maybe this line about having to relay on Russians is just a scare tactic aimed at congress to get more funding.

More news stories

Impact glass stores biodata for millions of years

(Phys.org) —Bits of plant life encapsulated in molten glass by asteroid and comet impacts millions of years ago give geologists information about climate and life forms on the ancient Earth. Scientists ...

Treating depression in Parkinson's patients

A group of scientists from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging has found interesting new information in a study on depression and neuropsychological function in Parkinson's ...