"Because in Cyberspace, no one can hear you scream."
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
(Space.com) U.S. astronauts will launch to the moon on sleek, single, shuttle booster rockets and the first new upper-stage rocket this country has developed in more than a decade, NASA and the Pentagon have told the White House.
Lunar landers and other gear needed for extended visits to the moon will be lofted by gargantuan launchers as big as the
Apollo-era Saturn 5, the most powerful rockets ever flown.
It looks as if NASA is transitioning away from the shuttle model, as in the past they have proven to be quite dangerous as Columbia has recently proved. Although these new rockets are probably more expensive, they will be able to go at a much greater range than it's shuttle cousins, as they can not only break free from the atmosphere but reach the moon as well.
"NASA will initiate development of a Crew Launch Vehicle derived from space shuttle solid rocket boosters with a new upper stage for human spaceflight," said the letter, signed by NASA Administrator Mike Griffin and the Pentagon's top space official, ex-astronaut Ron Sega...
"NASA then plans to develop a new 100-metric-ton-class launch vehicle derived from existing capabilities with the space shuttle external tanks and solid rocket boosters for future missions to the moon," the letter said.
NASA is planning on using these new shuttles to replace the current models, with industry forecasters predicting a launch as early as 2014. The new rocket design will differ slightly from it's predecessors, in the fact that the crew and cargo would launch separately from two different rockets each and join up in space later on. Launching this way will hopefully avoid future disasters, giving more support towards NASA revisiting the stars.
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