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posted by martyb on Friday March 09 2018, @03:55PM   Printer-friendly
from the pork-is-expensive dept.

Trump on Falcon Heavy: "I'm so used to hearing different numbers with NASA"

During a cabinet meeting on Thursday inside the White House, President Donald Trump called attention to several model rockets on the table before him. They included an Atlas V, a Falcon 9, a Space Launch System, and more. The president seemed enthused to see the launch vehicles. "Before me are some rocket ships," the president said. "You haven't seen that for this country in a long time."

Then, in remarks probably best characterized as spur of the moment, the president proceeded to absolutely demolish the government's own effort to build rockets by noting the recent launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket. He cited the cost as $80 million. (The list price on SpaceX's website is $90 million.)

"I noticed the prices of the last one they say cost $80 million," Trump said. "If the government did it, the same thing would have cost probably 40 or 50 times that amount of money. I mean literally. When I heard $80 million, I'm so used to hearing different numbers with NASA.''

NASA has not, in fact, set a price for flying the SLS rocket. But Ars has previously estimated that, including the billions of dollars in development cost, the per-flight fees for the SLS rocket will probably be close to $3 billion. Indeed, the development costs of SLS and its ground systems between now and its first flight could purchase 86 launches of the privately developed Falcon Heavy rocket. So President Trump's estimate of NASA's costs compared to private industry does not appear to be wildly off the mark.

[*] SLS: Space Launch System

Related: Maiden Flight of the Space Launch System Delayed to 2019
WFIRST Space Observatory Could be Scaled Back Due to Costs
Safety Panel Raises Concerns Over SpaceX and Boeing Commercial Crew Plans
After the Falcon Heavy Launch, Time to Defund the Space Launch System?
Trump Administration Budget Proposal Would Cancel WFIRST
Leaning Tower of NASA
NASA Moving to Scale Back the Space Technology Mission Directorate


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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by aristarchus on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:53AM (1 child)

    by aristarchus (2645) on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:53AM (#650459) Journal

    If you are going to do Haiku, you go to the master, Matsuo Bashô (松尾芭蕉) [carlsensei.com]

    古池
    蛙飛び込む
    水の音

    Furu ike ya
    kawazu tobikomu
    mizu no oto

    SoylentNews version:

    An ancient pond,
    khallow jumps in.
    The sound of water.

    *the sound of water here can be construed as the basis for climate change denial, but then we are still faced with the fact that khallow is a frog in this haiku, which means, according to Kermit, that "Time's fun when you're having flies."

    Starting Score:    1  point
    Moderation   +1  
       Insightful=1, Total=1
    Extra 'Insightful' Modifier   0  
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   3  
  • (Score: 1) by khallow on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:00AM

    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:00AM (#650462) Journal
    How dare you dirty my five Trump haiku!