SpaceX Starship to the Moon!

I know, I’m a day (or two) late and a dollar short. I’ll let Scott Manley explain it…

Yes, Scott. It is a very big deal. Other big rocket builders are building big rockets…but all of them are DISPOSABLE and not flying yet. virtual Kleenex instead of actual hankies…Paper towel wannabes instead of, well, towels.

Speaking of paper things, two builders of paper rockets are whining that SpaceX was the only applicant of the three of them to offer NASA what they wanted in a Lunar Lander. One would think that the choice that checks all the boxes and then some would be significantly more expensive than the other choices, right? No…SpaceX Lunar Starship filled the requirements and was the only choice that NASA could even afford. The technical and management features were more important than price of course, but the other two teams fell so short on merit and swung so wide on cost so as to totally disqualify themselves. SpaceX was cheaper…and the only choice that qualified…and the only choice that even fit within the money provided by Congress for NASA’s Human Landing System (HLS).

Now, NASA has had to hit the pause button on the HLS project for up to 100 days while they deal with official protest filings from the National Team and Dynetics. Yes, all of us were surprised when NASA down-selected to only SpaceX. I like the Dynetics concept best, but NASA says that it weighs too much and has too much schedule risk. I would have liked to see Blue Origin get into the game…but they teamed up with notoriously overpriced partners to provide their low-risk, Apollo style design option at something like twice the cost of the SpaceX lander. Well you guys…complain in one hand and spit in the other and see which one gets full the fastest.

Isn’t it hilarious that at roughly the same time that Dynetics and the National Team launched these protests against NASA for choosing SpaceX Starship over their paper rockets, SpaceX literally launched and landed an early development prototype of their lander? Maybe if those two losers spent more of their effort paying engineers to launch rockets and less effort paying lawyers and lobbyists to launch protests, they might get somewhere meaningful with their efforts.

Congress is upset of course…well Boo Hoo! NASA requested enough money to down-select to two contractors for this stage of the lander development project, but Congress didn’t provide them with that much money in the latest budget deal. So, NASA couldn’t afford two contractors and the number two choice, Congress’ own fave the Lobby Lander National Team, got nothing.

Hey! Congress! Don’t forget your place! Nobody cares who you think! Your usefulness to NASA begins and ends with the size of the check!

Photo by Pixabay on

This contract is only for the first landing though. NASA wants routine access to the lunar surface after this first landing in 2024. So, if Congress is nice and provides some more money, then maybe their pet contractors can have a piece of the next pie…provided somebody actually builds something. The more these military weapons contractors and their corrupt friends in Congress try to go back to the Old Space days of gazillion dollar bridges to nowhere, the more opportunities and money will slip through their fingers. Now they have to deal with the hype of a SpaceX crewed Lunar Starship lander mission and the privately funded #DearMoon Starship orbiting mission both happening fairly close together at about the same time everyone is supposed to be getting all gaga over the NASA late to the party and over budget Space Launch System…just to remind the world just how much we don’t need Congress or their Old Space buddies or the SLS.

To help punctuate this point, SpaceX has said that during the pause on NASA’s end of the lunar lander contract work…they’re still going to keep working and flying.

Don’t expect that from Dynetics or the Lobby Lander team.

~ by Bill Housley on May 6, 2021.

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