Thursday, November 20, 2008

Happy 10th Birthday International Space Station!

The ISS turned ten today and isn't it truly amazing how time has flown by. In those ten years the station has covered just enough miles in space to have gone to Saturn and back. The station has grown from that first module to the largest man-made object ever put into space. Let's hope that now as construction in nearing an end that we will maximize the potential our orbiting outpost has and leverage it as a platform to assemble and launch other vehicles to enhance our capabilties in space.

The work shouldn't end when the construction ends. We'll need a robust vision and plan to keep the station maintained and a vision to continue to enhance its function beyond research. The participating nations in the station program have antied up somewhere in the neighborhood of one-hundred billion dollars to get to where we are today with the U.S. portion of that projected at forty-one billion. With such a world-wide committment and investment we can't walk away now or leave the station to be ravaged by time and space. The right plan and vision and we'll be celebrating another milestone birthday in another ten years.

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