thumbnail of A Federal Case II; 9; NASA Appropriations Battle
Transcript
Hide -
If this transcript has significant errors that should be corrected, let us know, so we can add it to FIX IT+
This is a federal case. From Washington D.C. the National Educational radio network brings you an examination of current issues facing our nation and its capital city. This is Howard Dean as the current U.S. space program comes to an end. Congress is deciding what the next step will be. Congress will vote on whether or not to continue sending men into space as an integral part of our exploration program. The nation's current manned program Project Apollo will end in three years. Nasser has proposed manned space station and space shuttle programs to be completed by 1977 or 78 with a total cost of about 20 billion dollars. Many congressmen will feel the money could be better spent by flying unmanned missions. I've been trying to cut the NASA's budget for months. Recently they have been joined by many scientists who have taken an activist role instead of the traditionally quiet one in seeking to stop the funding for the shuttle and station programs. This growing number of congressmen and scientists argue that more
scientific knowledge could be gained at less risk and expense by using unmanned spacecraft. Dr. Thomas Gold chairman of the space science panel of the president's science advisory committee says he supports our exploration of space but we should get the most out of the money spent. I don't wish to be thought of as his wanting to reduce. Our expenditure in space my general feeling is that the country as a whole is spending too little now especially in recent times much too little on all aspects of science and technology. And it is I think leading to in the long run a very serious situation that science and technology are so much in trouble in the country. But nevertheless it's a fact that the money that will be spent in these areas is very limited. And then it becomes even more important than ever before to be sure that the money that goes into a part of the expenditure on science and
technology namely on the space program. But that part is really well spent in the manned program seems to me has had its day of demonstration that it could be done on the glory of landing a man on the moon no doubt live a long time. But at the present time there is not a really serious program in existence that uses women in a purposeful way commensurate with the cost. The US House of Representatives fought off tough opposition and approved 190 million dollar expenditure for the development and planning of the station shuttle programs. So if the NASA's budget is to be cut it will have to be done by the Senate which is proposing to allocate 110 million dollars for the programs the allocation was part of the Senate's independent office's appropriations bill which was vetoed by President Nixon. The president said too much money was allocated for urban renewal and anti pollution which was
also part of this bill. So the bill returns to the Senate where the senator is led by Walter Mondale of Minnesota William Proxmire of Wisconsin and Clifford Case of New Jersey will have another chance to knock out the 110 million dollar allocation and the past efforts to cut the NASS appropriations bill have failed. But the ranks of the dissenters have continued to increase enough so so that in July they lost by only four votes while voting on this very same issue. Now what prominent scientists behind them they hope to cut the national budget when the Senate once again votes on the appropriations. They contend the appropriation is only an installment on the station shuttle program which needs 14 billion dollars to complete. And this leads directly to an expenditure of between 50 and 100 billion dollars for a manned flight to Mars. Dr. Gold says we're not ready to go to Mars yet. As the solar system happens to be constructed Mars is terribly far away. Don't think of Mars as the next step. Just a little beyond the moon a round trip flight
time of a year and a half is a very different matter from a two day or three day trip. The present technology or the technology that we would now start to develop is just not adequate to contemplate a manned trip to Mars unless you are willing to spend probably in excess of a hundred billion dollars which I'm quite sure we're not. If one day manned men go to Mars I'm quite sure it will be long after Mars has been very thoughtfully explored by instrumented vehicles after the pieces have been brought back in the examine carefully on the earth. A lot of other planetary investigations have taken place and it will be in some background of technology which is quite different from the one we have now. To pretend that one is now building a space station for the purpose of making manned flight to Mars possible is just nonsense. It will not be a continuous evolution towards it and it will be a totally
wasted effort. So far as any eventual flight to Mars is concerned it will be like the drawings of Leonardo da Vinci about flying in airplanes. There was no continuous evolution from that to the Wright brothers. Captain Chester mission director for the Apollo program says there will be an unmanned program to Mars and defends the space station project. NASA's does believe in a balanced program and the unmanned effort will go on and with the unmanned effort some of these new systems. Not directly or indirectly related will be developed in the meantime. Let me cite that. Man must also learn to live in space and working and living in NE in Earth orbit. We will learn much and develop many systems that will enable man to understand how to operate in these long voyages. It would not it would be sheer folly I think to
develop a system that can take us to Mars propulsion system in whatever time it might take and not develop man's understanding and man's environmental systems to enable him to make that trip. So in parallel with that in addition to obtaining scientific data of our own earth and developing man's understanding of space we will be developing systems that can go in parallel with the propulsion system and enable us to take these great long voyages and outer space. We put the comments of Captain Lee together with those of Dr. Gold to arrive at a form of dialogue on the man vs. Un-Band controversy. First Dr. Gold in case of a space station going in orbit around the Earth just a bigger thing than you've had for the previous manned missions. Every experiment that is onboard of those things. Could better be done and much more to do with the success of the 16 mission of the Russians to the moon that a very important aspect of
the missions could also have been done on a much smaller expense captain with regard to cost. When you say far cheaper I guess I would question that. Certainly to a degree it is cheaper per mission per se. But as to cost effectiveness I would be another matter of some analysis to determine whether that's correct or not. As to the scientific return. Certainly there are a number of things that machine can do man can build machine to do many things. As to the scientific objectives can be achieved and the degree of success varies too as to. What they specifically are. There are many things that man can do that machine better than a machine can do. Man is. He's more adaptable to surprises someone forseen event occurring. Man is there to take care of it and to correct it and enable us
to get a return rather than a complete total failure. Admittedly there will be cases when there could be a complete failure a man can't fix it on Apollo 12. When we were deploying the thermal device to provide the power for the experiments many of you may recall on watching TV that Albion had trouble getting the thermal unit out of its case it had been carried or even used a hammer to tap it loose. And I ask how would a machine and people generally think that a manned program after all has the advantage that the man is there and can make decisions in some remote location. An instrument can only do what the instrument was told to do that is not the correct an instrument such as for example Luna 16 can be designed to respond in fine detail to a man on the ground. It can be the eyes and the hands are then the manipulative process that the man could could have
can be in the remote location but down on the Earth can be as my friend Casella said his stomach. He can stay on the Earth and indeed he can then be a much more skilled person because he does not have to be at the same time an extremely skillful at this point. He can be a scientist or someone who is but the killer skilled in the discipline and he can move and maneuver and view and examine everything just as well as the men in the remote location constrained as he would be in a space suit. We in effect have a scientist on the earth controlling human eyes when we have our astronauts on the surface and real play providing real time support. The astronauts describe the scenes that we have TV pictures. They pick out interesting spots and they during the day for example during the period between the first and second EVH. They can plan a second traverse to more scientifically interesting and valuable
points of interest. True TV can get some things as a question of resolution which really. I just don't think you can replace the human eye has to fine detail in the human mind to one perfect or to document what one has seen. Don't think that the unmanned program is in some intrinsic sense inferior command program. It can be superior even in the sense of detail the activity in the remote place that is a very important aspect of the technology of the future for many other occasions too. Not only the exploration of the solar system. It's an area where the Soviets on Dr. Lee moving ahead and I hope very much that we won't stay on the wrong track but that we will move into that area. And I've no doubt that instrumentation on the whole we are ahead of the Soviets and we could stay ahead in that area if we don't move into it. But if we insist on maintaining a manned cumbersome heavy over expensive manned
program we will be beaten by them in every important endeavor in space and developing the capability to land man on a mine in return. We have the engineering know how and capability to move in to unmanned. The echoes perhaps even more sophisticated that can do even more things and has just recently been accomplished. The engineering capability has been developed and is available to carry out these things. So overall I don't think we have lost at all. I think overall we have gained and had that man's landing will benefit the unmanned vehicles through the cross-fertilisation of information gained. Captain Lee and Dr. Gold Dr. golds at a TV camera could be controlled from the earth by a scientist and be more effective than a puppet confined in a space suit. But Dr Rock will patrol the Apollo program director says a TV camera would also be constricting.
You could do much with television but you're not going to have the resolution not going have the depth you're not going to have the feel of it. You're also not going to be able to see what's off to the side. You know in a plane you can look at down a narrow alley. It's always like looking through a straw. So I won't be little what can be done with the machine. I'll also say it's very difficult. We have looked at for example we call it dual mode Rover. A rover that we could ma'am first then one man laughed. Continue to operate at unmanned. We did not believe it was so expensive. But as a project one could undertake it now from Earth you could command it to move slowly look look at the ground. But then when you pick the rock up it's got to bring it somewhere else you've got to rendezvous with the ship. If you want to rendezvous with an unmanned ship you've got to bring this thing around the surface. It would be extremely complex I won't say it can't be done. After all you know we have made a man landing on the moon we sure could make a manned landing. I will not say it will be quite in the knowledge you get back and then you still have got to return your specimen some way which again you'd have
to find a way to rendezvous your machine picking up your specimens with the machinists to come back. It certainly can be done but I'm. I will state frankly in a very deep so that you have made on the lunar surface exploration that the machine cannot do what a man can do. The decision making ability plus the training and perception I think is the one thing that the man can add that a machine cannot. And what the Russians did engineering wise. Certainly a great feat. I don't take it away from. The terms of science return. It doesn't compare and I think you can tell by the reaction of the world that it doesn't compare. It's certainly in it. If they had done it without our doing ours it would have been the most tremendous scientific feat done but have been done in the life of Apollo. It's a fairly small feat. Yet I must give them great credit for what they did. But Dr. Gold on the other hand urges the development of an unmanned lunar rover.
I would very strongly urge that an unmanned program to the moon. He started an unmanned program that goes way beyond the one that the Russians have so fly executed namely an unmanned program that lends a vehicle capable of rolling big distances on the ground picking up things in the view of its television eyes. And eventually like the Luna 16 delivering a small package of this material so picked up back so I would include the roving capabilities. I would think it terribly important because out of this activity and perhaps not out of the coattail the Apollo missions. Perhaps I don't know will come the basic understanding of the structure of the moon and with the origin of the earth and the other planets and that will become such a vital piece of scientific. Understanding of our universe that I don't want that relegated. To anyone else if I can help it.
Dr. Nassif already is planning things such as the rover to man would get out and they would be able to travel great distances. So what would be a public reaction to sending an unmanned mission to the moon to do essentially what the manned program is already thinking and planning on doing. Think of the think of the case of landing somewhere in the middle of the desert here in the US in the middle of the Sahara Desert with a thousand miles clear in each direction of desert. And there you go on a. Six mile radius with a little weather little vehicle with a little taxi on a six mile radius around the point that you have land in the middle of a sodden desert. It isn't that different from the idea of crossing the whole of Africa shall we say from one end to the other. From one end to the other instead of a little six mile circle at one place. That's what we're talking about a roving vehicle unmanned because it will go day after day mile after mile and it will cross across maybe the whole face of the moon. The discovery that.
Can be done in that getting into it into the mountains into the rills into valleys into all kinds of places is totally different from the discovery that you would make if you were forced to land in a very flat piece of terrain because that's the only place where they can land and circle it by six miles so it's not really a step backward. You know the unmanned program will have an enormously larger capability for reaching interesting sights on the moon and that. Is a capability which the Soviets apparently are working to. They will have because they already have shown that they're well on the way to this. One of the biggest things after launching the first Vanguard was let's look ahead to a manned mission. And now that we've got manned missions we're looking back to one manned missions. Do you think this is really what the public wants and most support. I don't think that that the public. It considers itself in the
first place competent to judge what the nation ought to have in this regard. But perhaps the public is not fully aware of is that all the purposes to which the manned flight has been put can be better served at much lower expense with unmanned flight and also the public may not be able be aware of is just how interesting thrilling it will be to have really sophisticated instruments in remote places. It would be just as much fun to observe the roving vehicle on the moon. Reaching new exciting places showing you through its television camera the details that it sees the debate as to whether we should go here or there tomorrow. All this the debate whether we pick up the stone and that stone and do what we can see on them which ones we should bring back to the earth. All of that will be in the end a very gripping and exciting story to which the kids in school will love and be really interested in. Once the public understands that there is not only
much better scientific purpose in the unmanned flight. Much lower costs but also indeed the feeling that one is achieving something. Once caught up in the enterprise once that becomes clear I think the public will favor. The unmanned flight. Another disputed aspect of the Man in Space program surrounds project Sky Lab scheduled to be launched in late 1072 this Earth orbiting workshop is designed to test the effects of long duration spaceflight on its three man crews. Three different crews work aboard the spacecraft at different times. The first crew remaining for 28 days in the next two crews for 56 days each. This project is a natural stepping stone leading to the controversial manned space station. Many scientists feel man will encounter many medical problems during long periods in space and projects Skylab is designed to see if they are right. Presuming they are right legislators like Senator Mondale and scientists
like Dr. Gold feel it would be a waste of money at this time to start designing a space station. Dr. Gold says we shouldn't design it now especially since we don't know if men can survive in one. I personally think that at the moment the medical problems are not solved. I don't think that we're going to fly out 56 days of continuous manned flight in Skylab. There are serious medical problems and perhaps they will one day be solved but only by. Serious medical program. There is no adequate medical probate program now being planned. The urgency for long duration manned flight. Is now not very great because we don't have any real purpose for that. If one day we have much better technology so that it really becomes reasonable to take a ship to Mars and landed then fly back. If that were reasonable but the moment not even claims it it's reasonable if there were one day reasonable. Well then there's going to be time before that becomes reasonable but you can see it on
the horizon. There's still plenty of time to improve the biomedical situation for long duration and flight. We don't need to go to great expense now and then put that piece of knowledge on the shelf reports from the Soviet Union tend to support the doctor's beliefs. Soviet cosmonaut Colonel Andrea Nikolayev reported that the muscles of the Soyuz nine for all or so atrophied after their 18 day mission in orbit last June that they felt as if they were glued to their chairs. He said that one after much difficulty they reached a standing position. They walked with a peculiar little stepping steps upon landing they were so weak the ground crew had to help them out of the hatch. Colonel Nicholai of said Special Needs must be developed to help the recovery of astronauts after future flights of a month or more. Although the Soyuz nine crew performed exercises and space to retard the atrophy his report suggests more extensive exercise may be needed for extended flights such as those two other planets he said it now appeared that simulation of gravity would be required.
There appears to be dissension even among the ranks of those favoring unmanned space flights. Although Dr. Gold would like to see an unmanned rover spacecraft covering the surface of the moon Dr. James Abe and Alan would not. Dr. Van Allen is designer of the satellite that discovered the Van Allen radiation belt in space and chairman of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Iowa. He says let's move on to something other than the moon. I think by the completion of. The for further Apollo flights we will have done the moon more than just us you know in relationship to other topics of interest. So I would not advocate developing the unmanned lunar mode at this time unless we wanted to do that as a prototype system for doing it to Mars. My own interest sort of turns away from the moon at this point and moves on to the other planet and the planets more particularly Minnesota Senator Walter Mondale explained the legislators position that this 110 million dollar allocation now would lead to an
expenditure of billions later. Congress will soon have to decide whether to begin development of NASA's next manned space extravaganza the space shuttle station. The startup cost for this ambitious program is only one hundred ten million dollars. But the real cost implications are at least 14 billion dollars and the ultimate cost will probably go much higher. If this project is approved the dominance of manned space operations will be ensured for years to come. Despite the strong belief in the scientific community that unmanned space flights are far cheaper and yield greater technological benefits. The successful flight of Luna 16 reinforces this view. Development of the space shuttle station will also mean that NASA's projected budget by 1979 will be seven billion dollars a year more than
twice its present budget. A sophisticated strong unmanned space program could be funded at somewhere in the neighborhood of two billion dollars a year. A saving of over five billion and with a much higher scientific return. The president indeed doing the Hyde NASS appropriations bill chose to do battle over desperately needed funds for the cities and the environment while sanctioning the beginning of another multibillion dollar space extravaganza. It is tragic enough that we cannot find the resources for urgent domestic needs when we are spending three point Dubh 2 billion on space what will happen when that budget rises to 7 billion. We are very hopeful that in this next struggle we will be able to strike the one hundred ten million dollars involved for so called hardening of the design. And we think that the brilliant work of Dr. Van
Allen and Dr. Gold and others in the scientific community such such as Doctor that they help underscore the importance of this drug. Wisconsin Senator William Proxmire says the national budget should be cut not funds for domestic needs. The president in vetoing the bill vetoed it because funds exceeded his requests for grants for local sewer and water by three hundred fifty million dollars for. Veterans medical care by some hundred five million dollars and urban renewal by three hundred fifty million dollars. Now there isn't the independent offices appropriation bill. Almost a billion and a half dollars for a manned flight. And it seems to me that we can make a strong case that a cut in the 3 billion dollar overall appropriation for space by five hundred forty million dollars would bring the budget in do line with the monetary amount the
president requests. New Jersey senator Clifford Kay says this would lead to an almost irrevocable expenditure of billions of dollars in respect to the shuttle and long term flight. We just don't know enough it seems to me medically to know whether this makes sense or not and not just a decision or to be answered on the basis of careful examination and experimentation before we start it almost irrevocably on a course which is going to lead to the expenditure of billions of dollars. Captain Chester Lee disagrees with Senator case. I don't agree with that this necessarily means that I don't tend I can million dollar commitment this time means that we're committing ourselves. Definitely two hundred billion dollar program. They hundred ten million permits us to move forward to develop a capability for for further ex space exploration. Initially it's certainly going to be Earth orbital which can provide many many returns many benefits to do mankind.
Just knowing more about our own Earth Congress and controls the money and any time they want to cut off a program it's certainly their prerogative and they can do it. If this space shuttle is successful and is developed and it proves to be economical and it develops our capability in Earth orbit and this then is a natural step to further exploration and a cut country then accepts and willing yes will go on but if it doesn't. Or other problems mean we have to slow it and it will be slowed down but it's certainly not ever irretrievably a decision that we'll then commit ourselves by saying on in general you know we're committing a hundred billion certainly. Dr. Rocco petroleum concurs it's up to Congress now. I want depends upon the future very much a political decision and the scientists will make an input. The rational people here many times which is science represent one element of man in
space. Far as I'm concerned is man's destiny. You might turn it back five years you might turn it back 10. But you're not going to turn it off any more than the seas could turn man off from going to explore. It may have turned him on for a thousand years but he finally went across the water and he found something. We went across the water went to the moon. It's not going to be turned off it might be delayed. Man's destiny is to explore man's destiny to expand. Recently a member of the Soviet Academy of Sciences said Russia will rely on unmanned space exploration more than manned missions in the future. He said there is ground to believe that the cost of the lunar rock brought back by the Soviet automatic be a go. It's considerably less than the cost of the Iraq taken to work by the piloted ships. His statement was reported in the Soviet newspaper Prada that the successful mission of the lunar 16 moon scooper which brought back to work samples of the moon soil. So the debate over manned versus unmanned space exploration moves into the U.S. Senate. They will vote on the appropriations bill for the manned space station and space shuttle programs.
Series
A Federal Case II
Episode Number
9
Episode
NASA Appropriations Battle
Producing Organization
National Educational Radio Network
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
AAPB ID
cpb-aacip/500-fb4wn897
If you have more information about this item than what is given here, or if you have concerns about this record, we want to know! Contact us, indicating the AAPB ID (cpb-aacip/500-fb4wn897).
Description
Other Description
"A Federal Case II" is a weekly program produced by the National Educational Radio Network which examines current political topics in the United States and Washington, D.C. Each episode features interviews with experts, members of the public, and lawmakers concerning a specific issue of government.
Date
1970-00-00
Genres
Documentary
Topics
Education
Public Affairs
Politics and Government
Media type
Sound
Duration
00:29:59
Embed Code
Copy and paste this HTML to include AAPB content on your blog or webpage.
Credits
Producing Organization: National Educational Radio Network
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 70-18-9 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:30:00?
If you have a copy of this asset and would like us to add it to our catalog, please contact us.
Citations
Chicago: “A Federal Case II; 9; NASA Appropriations Battle,” 1970-00-00, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed August 17, 2022, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-fb4wn897.
MLA: “A Federal Case II; 9; NASA Appropriations Battle.” 1970-00-00. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. August 17, 2022. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-fb4wn897>.
APA: A Federal Case II; 9; NASA Appropriations Battle. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-fb4wn897