|Tuesday / 2 May 2006|
Wingo on Marburger: Economic Development of Moon Central to VSE. Space entrepreneur and author Dennis Wingo calls Presidential Science Advisor John Marburger's speech, made at the '44th AAS Goddard Symposium' in March, "the most important statement on the development of the space frontier from the [US] government" since JFK's Apollo speech. Wingo agrees with Marburger's main idea -- that in terms of priority, "space is losing the funding battle within the government as it is not perceived to contribute to future economic competitiveness." Wingo says the Vision for Space Exploration (VSE) and NASA space science must be realigned to support future economic competitiveness in the USA. Marburger states in his speech that the Moon, followed by NEOs, has the greatest potential for economic development. To take advantage of the Moon's resources, Wingo says NASA's Robotic Lunar Exploration Program should "reflect a resource prospecting theme" and support future human operations such as GPS / communications infrastructure, lunar surface beacons and preparatory work for a lunar base. Without a core focus on the economic development of the Moon, Wingo does not think any lunar architecture can achieve a truly sustainable human presence. Since the VSE was announced over two years ago, two constant themes have emerged for achieving economic development and sustainability on the Moon and in space: commercialism and internationalism. Only by utilizing the great resources of private industry and international cooperation can humanity hope to open the space frontier to all and become a multiplanet species. Source SpaceRef.