Inquisitive minds may want to know what NASA’s budget looks like now, since Bush proposes redirecting 11 billion dollars of the budget to a moon mission. I’m way into the moon mission; I just wanna know where the money is coming from. I found 2004 budget information here.
This is not an exhaustive examination of the budget, it’s just a summary based on their request. That said, onward. Hm, this is long — follow the link for the bulk of the discussion and information.
NASA asked for a hair over four billion for space science. This included 1.359 billion for solar system exploration, including a program to develop nuclear-powered spacecraft. It also included a program to research laser-based communication for speedier feedback and a number of solar system probes. It also included 570 million for Mars exploration; 877 million for researching the origins of life, life outside the solar system, and galaxy formation; 432 million for studying the nature of the universe, including telescope research and building; and 770 million for studying the Sun.
NASA asked for 1.552 billion for earth science. Most of that would go to three satellites with instruments to study our climate, the ozone layer, and so on. 75 million would go to leveraging their research to help other federal agencies.
NASA asked for 973 million for biological and physical research. 359 million of this would go to studying how to keep people healthy in space. 353 million would go to studying more or less basic physics and laws of nature, in ways that take advantage of our space capacity. 261 million would go to research partnerships.
Practical stuff! 959 million for aeronautics, including aviation safety — anti-terrorism stuff. 1.05 billion would go to working on space launch capacity. 438 million would go to mission and scientific measurement technologies. Finally, another 169 million for partnerships with industry and academia.
NASA asked for a mere 170 million for education. Cheap at the cost, if you ask me.
There’s no amount listed for the International Space Station. The space shuttle would get 3.968 billion, and miscellaneous space flight support would get 434 million.
OK, that’s all the data. Now, how does this all work out? The 11 billion is spread out over 5 years, so it’s about 2 billion a year. You gotta assume it’s not coming from space flight or aerospace technology, since that’s where the new money will be spent. Ditto the space science, at least the new propulsion technology portion of it.
So chances are it’s the biological science and the earth science that are gonna get whacked. Sigh.