NASA has no money to save Hubble Space Telescope
This looks to become one of the outcomes of the America’s war on Iraq. NASA is one of the few organizations to have escaped any budget cuts in the president’s proposed 2006 budget, which was unveiled on Monday. It even got a modest spending hike in the budget… however, it is still not good enough for NASA to save the Hubble Space Telescope.
President Bush has allotted USD 16.5 Billion for the NASA out of which little is expected to be spent for software upgrades and other tweaks. However, it would help them to pursue the possibilities of explorations of Moon and Mars in 2006. The budget for NASA is part of the bigger National Science and Technology Budget, which saw cuts in the departments of Energy and Defense.
Estimates claim that NASA has allotted USD 93 million for the Hubble telescope most of which would be spent on bringing it safely to earth. They should be presenting a report on this by March. A senior NASA official said that the proposed budget shows the interest of the president shifting towards manned space exploration missions to Moon and Mars.
The problems with the routine upgrades of the Hubble Telescope started with the explosion of Columbia shuttle on 1 February 2003. The event led to the grounding of the entire Shuttle fleet delaying any work done on the Hubble Space Telescope.