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posted by martyb on Wednesday April 07 2021, @09:48PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the Now-that's-just-sick! dept.

Pandemic to cost NASA up to $3 billion

A NASA audit concluded that costs imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic on the agency could reach $3 billion, with several major science and exploration programs accounting for much of that cost.

A March 31 report by the NASA Office of Inspector General (OIG) stated that the agency expects that the pandemic's effects on the agency, ranging from closed facilities to disrupted supply chains, to be nearly $3 billion. Of that, about $1.6 billion came from 30 major programs and projects, defined by NASA as those with a total cost of at least $250 million.

[...] The project with the largest cost increase in the report is the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope, formerly known as the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST). It reported $3 million in costs because of the pandemic in fiscal year 2020, but estimates nearly $400 million in additional impacts in future years. The mission has a lifecycle cost of $3.9 billion.

[...] The Space Launch System had the second-highest cost increase in terms of overall dollars, at $363 million, of which $8 million was in fiscal year 2020 and $355 million in fiscal years 2021 through 2023. A three-month delay in the first SLS mission, Artemis 1, along with "rephrasing production" each accounted for about one-third of the costs. The rest came from "surge costs" to compress schedules as well as the costs of facility shutdowns.

The Orion spacecraft suffered $146 million in costs, including $5 million in fiscal year 2020 and $66 million in fiscal year 2021. Because the Orion spacecraft for the Artemis 1 mission was nearly complete at the time the pandemic hit, the largest effects were on the Orion spacecraft for the Artemis 2 and 3 missions, both still in production. Those problems extended to Europe, with delays in the production of the European Service Module for the Artemis 2 Orion.


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NASA Wants to Buy SLS Rockets at Half Price, Fly Them Into the 2050s 27 comments

NASA wants to buy SLS rockets at half price, fly them into the 2050s

NASA has asked the US aerospace industry how it would go about "maximizing the long-term efficiency and sustainability" of the Space Launch System rocket and its associated ground systems.

[...] In its request NASA says it would like to fly the SLS rocket for "30 years or more" as a national capability. Moreover, the agency wants the rocket to become a "sustainable and affordable system for moving humans and large cargo payloads to cislunar and deep-space destinations."

[...] Among the rocket's chief architects was then-Florida Senator Bill Nelson, who steered billions of dollars to Kennedy Space Center in his home state for upgraded ground systems equipment to support the rocket. Back in 2011, he proudly said the rocket would be delivered on time and on budget.

"This rocket is coming in at the cost of... not only what we estimated in the NASA Authorization act, but less," Nelson said at the time. "The cost of the rocket over a five- to six-year period in the NASA authorization bill was to be no more than $11.5 billion. This costs $10 billion for the rocket." Later, he went further, saying, "If we can't do a rocket for $11.5 billion, we ought to close up shop."

After more than 10 years, and more than $30 billion spent on the rocket and its ground systems, NASA has not closed up shop. Rather, Nelson has ascended to become the space agency's administrator.

Previously:


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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @09:55PM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @09:55PM (#1134469)

    Close NASA and give the $3 billion to Elon.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:00PM (2 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:00PM (#1134472)

      Are you in the habit of just giving tax money to billionaires? What are you, a Republican?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:49PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:49PM (#1134494)

        There's nothing of value in the black parts of space. Space is racist!

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:11AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:11AM (#1134534)

          There's a large contingency of dark matter aficionados who disagree with you.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @11:25PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @11:25PM (#1134503)

      NASA does good work when they are allowed to. It is Boeing and Lockheed Martin that aren't pulling their considerable weight.

  • (Score: 0, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:18PM (14 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:18PM (#1134480)

    Like so many orgs - universities, musea, libraries, public schools - living off the government teat, NASA could continue doing nothing but run in maintenance mode for the entire run of the "pandemic" yet to go.

    Grants are going to continue being paid, salaries are going to continue being paid, rents are going to continue being paid, and peers at the NSF are going to continue funneling money on. It's only the poor fools in private industry that actually have to produce something to get paid.

    • (Score: 4, Touché) by Tork on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:22PM (13 children)

      by Tork (3914) on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:22PM (#1134482)
      That's an excellent argument for not privatizing the post office.
      --
      Slashdolt Logic: "24 year old jokes about sharks and lasers are +5, Funny." 💩
      • (Score: -1, Troll) by Ethanol-fueled on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:45PM (12 children)

        by Ethanol-fueled (2792) on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:45PM (#1134493) Homepage

        The post office is world-renowned for its good benefits, fat pensions, and actual diversity. Hell, I think it would be good to offer them a domestic monopoly on shipping, and anybody who has experienced the cheap felonious Mexicans of FedEx and UPS manhandling their packages would agree.

        After we kick the Jews out of it, of course. We don't want them interfering with elections, or anything, like they tried to do last time.

        • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Tork on Wednesday April 07 2021, @11:17PM (8 children)

          by Tork (3914) on Wednesday April 07 2021, @11:17PM (#1134500)
          It was the Trump Administration that sabotaged the post-office during the pandemic. That was over fear that making voting more accessible in any way means the Republicans will lose. (That's also why Trump tried to get Ukraine to conjure up dirt on Biden [Hunter's laptop anyone?] even though he was NOT the front-running-candidate at the time.) This same fear is why Georgia's going "ruh roh!" and legislating... bringing water to ppl in line to vote.


          It turns out the GOP's strategy of "appeal to white people's fear of strangers" doesn't work when, for example, someone of the Jewish Faith becomes part of your family by marriage. Normally I would have said "Muslim Faith" but one day you're gonna say the wrong thing in front of the wrong person and my words will echo in your head.
          --
          Slashdolt Logic: "24 year old jokes about sharks and lasers are +5, Funny." 💩
          • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Thursday April 08 2021, @03:36AM (7 children)

            by fustakrakich (6150) on Thursday April 08 2021, @03:36AM (#1134630) Journal

            It was the Trump Administration that sabotaged the post-office during the pandemic.

            He's late to the party. The big bomb was dropped on the post office with the pension rule imposed in 2006 [ips-dc.org]. Congress has a real opportunity to fix it now, but will most likely squander it to expediency. Whatever happens to the post office presents no threat to their reelection.

            --
            Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
            • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @04:12AM (3 children)

              by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @04:12AM (#1134636)

              Machinery was removed last summer.

              • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Thursday April 08 2021, @04:21AM

                by fustakrakich (6150) on Thursday April 08 2021, @04:21AM (#1134638) Journal

                Yes, he added to the problem. That's in the past. Congress can still cut the losses, if they are interested.

                --
                Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @11:24AM (1 child)

                by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @11:24AM (#1134729)

                Yeah, that 2002 Dell was *critical* to prevent COVID / BLM outrage / voter suppression.

                • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:39PM

                  by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:39PM (#1134761)

                  Your news sources are omitting important details.

            • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Friday April 09 2021, @01:39PM (2 children)

              by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Friday April 09 2021, @01:39PM (#1135284) Homepage
              Yup. John Oliver, yeah, yeah, whatever, covered the issue last year and his segment corroborates your identifying of 2006 as when the shit was launched towards the fan.
              https://www.boston.com/culture/entertainment/2020/05/11/john-oliver-postal-service
              --
              Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 09 2021, @02:29PM (1 child)

                by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 09 2021, @02:29PM (#1135299)
                No one's disputing that, but if we didn't have the Trump Administration in power last year we would not have the removal of sorting machines during a pandemic.

                "Alderaan, it's been destroyed!" "Eh, it's just as well, they hadn't winterized their power stations anyway."
                • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Friday April 09 2021, @05:50PM

                  by fustakrakich (6150) on Friday April 09 2021, @05:50PM (#1135401) Journal

                  Trumps actions were comparatively inconsequential. We have an ongoing problem that needs to be fixed now, and the democrats are dragging their feet. Even an executive order could fix it until congress passes legislation.

                  --
                  Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:16AM (2 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:16AM (#1134538)

          Having recently talked to a 28 year carrier now working in postal maintenance, he told me that there is no pension, only a pre-tax contribution option, and salaries are a lot lower and conditions are worse than private carriers like UPS.

          • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:15AM (1 child)

            by Reziac (2489) on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:15AM (#1134566) Homepage

            When I asked a couple years ago, I was told that temporary USPS positions start at $17/hour. What does UPS pay entry-level employees?

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @02:54PM

              by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @02:54PM (#1134792)

              Don't know about entry level, but he said at 30 years' service, he was making 60k, highest paid USPS low level employees could make 90k, while established UPS drivers were supposedly making 6 figures.

  • (Score: 1) by melyan on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:54PM (8 children)

    by melyan (14385) on Wednesday April 07 2021, @10:54PM (#1134496) Journal

    Up to $100 trillion at this point?

    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @11:47PM (7 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 07 2021, @11:47PM (#1134520)

      This is what happens when bureaucrats get unchecked power; to gift $5 trillion to their billionaire friends, they destroy 20 times more.

      The Soviet Union self-destructed in exactly the same manner. Seems no one has learned anything from that.

      • (Score: 0, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:13AM (5 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:13AM (#1134536)

        Let's send the bill to China.... after they pay they'll think twice about developing any more bioweapons.

        • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:16AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:16AM (#1134539)

          *laughs in Mandarin*

        • (Score: 2) by PartTimeZombie on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:19AM (3 children)

          by PartTimeZombie (4827) on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:19AM (#1134540)

          There are some particularly stupid comments on this site today, but this one might be the stupidist.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:23AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:23AM (#1134550)

            Starring Part Time Zombie as The Stupidist. His powers of spelling will astound you!

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:29AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:29AM (#1134555)

            哈哈哈 I thought it was funny

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:14PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:14PM (#1134752)

            Don't be so hard on yourself.

      • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Friday April 09 2021, @01:40PM

        by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Friday April 09 2021, @01:40PM (#1135285) Homepage
        The Soviet Union self-destructed because of US interference in their political system.
        --
        Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
  • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:12AM (5 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:12AM (#1134535) Homepage Journal

    $3 Billion is just a drop. Not even a drop in a bucket, but a drop in a swimming pool. All across America, how many businesses have been shut down, that will never reopen? How many more have been severely crippled, they might survive, but that infamous "return on investment" has been blown to hell. And, all the other businesses, big and small, that are losing money during the down time. Not crippled, like those I've already mentioned, but just bleeding money.

    Then, there are all those private citizens who are losing money.

    Stack $3 Billion up against all of that, nationwide. Less than a drop in a swimming pool. The question is, should it be an Olympic sized pool?

    --
    There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
    • (Score: 2) by PartTimeZombie on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:20AM (3 children)

      by PartTimeZombie (4827) on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:20AM (#1134544)

      What point do you think you're making?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:27AM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:27AM (#1134554)

        I think the point is that when you've got a problem that needs stupidizing, you should remember to visit The Stupidist.

        • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:08AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:08AM (#1134564)

          We did hear from Runaway1956, who in a recent pole, was voted the most stupidest Soylentil. Now he's opining on economics, which is usually khallow's obsessive compulsive topic.

                  Small businesses? Closed? Never to re-open? Well, good. If they can't make it through a one-year pandemic shut-down, probably mismanaged and a front for drug-dealing. And besides, the "personal responsibility" crowd do not realize that small businesses only exist to recycle any capital accumulation from the petit bourgeosie, but getting them to put up their savings, and then lose them in the inevitable bankruptcy. Kind of a Trump business plan. And then, they have to go back to work for a living.

          • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Friday April 09 2021, @01:44PM

            by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Friday April 09 2021, @01:44PM (#1135287) Homepage
            I suspect Runaway knows the difference between a "poll" and a "pole". At least this proves that you're "punching up".
            --
            Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
    • (Score: 1) by melyan on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:27AM

      by melyan (14385) on Thursday April 08 2021, @12:27AM (#1134553) Journal

      America is about $10 trillion.

  • (Score: 2) by Frosty Piss on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:44AM

    by Frosty Piss (4971) on Thursday April 08 2021, @01:44AM (#1134573)

    I hear that Elon Musk did and is doing it for a *lot* less.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @02:07AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 08 2021, @02:07AM (#1134584)

    A redneck, a nurse, and a postal worker walk into a bar...

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