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February 22, 1986 | By William F. Buckley Jr
One of this week's headlines reads, "Investigator says booster tempterature was 'absurd'. " So is becoming absurd the feverish investigation into the tragedy of the space shuttle Challenger. Not because it is absurd to inquire into the causes of accidents, but because the spirit of this inquiry gives off unhealthy odors, one part Luddite, one part ideological, one part opportunistic. Here is some perspective on the Challenger accident. On May 2, 1953, 37 passengers and six crew members of a BOAC Comet jetliner were killed when the aircraft crashed, in a storm, 30 miles from Calcutta, India.
NEWS
March 27, 1992 | By GREGORY C. FARRINGTON
Anyone who is debating whether we should fund the space program should remember Queen Isabella of Spain. What did she think when Christopher Columbus asked her to finance his crazy plan to go east by sailing west? Presumably he had a good proposal, one that promised cheaper spices, faster transportation routes, even the possibility of discovering a new island or two. Just as likely, the queen had plenty of other demands on her purse. Surely one of her ministers pointed out that Columbus had not received many grants previously and had a spotty record.
NEWS
July 25, 1995 | BY DONALD KAUL
"Apollo 13" is one of the big movie hits of the summer, right up there with "Batman Forever" and "Pocahontas. " It deserves to be. Rather than being a multimillion-dollar cartoon strip that talks, it is solidly based in reality - a 1969 moon walk mission that went bad and very nearly left three astronauts stranded in space, with no escape or rescue possible, as a horrified nation looked on. The averting of that disaster, the details of which the...
NEWS
February 3, 2014 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
  Budget cuts scrubbed Northeast High School's acclaimed space research program. Supporters saved it. On Monday - just a few weeks after The Inquirer reported that the Philadelphia School District's budget crunch had killed the trailblazing, NASA-recognized program - it will resume operation. Alumni and friends of "SPARC," as the program is known, have funded it for the rest of the school year with plans to update outdated technology, find industry partnerships, and ensure its long-term survival.
NEWS
January 12, 2004 | Walter Cronkite is a nationally syndicated columnist
The United States, NASA and its Jet Propulsion Laboratory at Cal Tech can rejoice over the successful Jan. 3 landing on Mars of the spacecraft called Spirit. Soon it will be commanded to begin moving from its landing site to search for evidence that there once was life on the red planet. Meanwhile, space buffs, many of whom are known for their vivid imaginations, predict another activity for the craft: breakdown. During the past three years, several American and British robots have reached Mars only to refuse to communicate with their masters on Earth.
NEWS
September 29, 1988 | By John Marks and Burt Edelson
The United States was once the only superpower that was open about its space program. From the beginning, U.S. launches were shown live on television. While full disclosure had embarrassing and tragic moments, it added greatly to the effect of successes. It also promoted support for space activities and recognition of American leadership - in the years when the United States was ahead. Now the Soviet Union has started to practice glasnost, or openness, in space. Not only have the Soviets started to televise their liftoffs, but also in recent weeks they have given extensive publicity to two missions that got into serious trouble: a near-disaster that occurred in bringing two cosmonauts back to Earth, followed by the failure of an automated spacecraft that was launched in July to probe the moons of Mars.
NEWS
August 17, 1989 | BY SALVATORE PASTINO
In celebrating the 20th anniversary of Apollo 11's manned lunar landing, many Americans have wondered why this nation did not surge forward in its efforts to conquer and explore space. Why did America stop going to the moon in 1972 after only six missions? What happened to all the elaborate hopes and dreams for planetary exploration and the establishment of a space station? Why does America have such a hard time getting back into the real space race? At first, space exploration was a mere idea, but we were scared into making it a reality in 1957 when the Soviets launched the Sputnik satellite.
NEWS
July 25, 1997 | by Dale McFeatters
All you have to do is look at the scientists and engineers behind the Mars program to know where all the high school audio-visual squads have gone. They have the same endearing goofiness of the Science Club when a project of theirs actually worked in a way that didn't require evacuation of the school and presence of the Fire Department. The NASA team successfully sent a spacecraft 119 million miles, sent it screaming down through the Martian atmosphere at 16,000 mph and gently set it on the surface of another planet, where it transmits back pictures of a rock named Scooby Doo. Gang, what we're missing here is excitement, sex appeal, suspense - in short, marketing.
NEWS
February 5, 2003 | By Paul Root Wolpe
It was July 20, 1969, and I was 12. Like most Americans, I was sitting with my family in front of the television set, witnessing a turning point in human history. We all understood the gravity of the moment. With the words "Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed," some new measure of the grandeur of human achievement was impressed on my 12-year-old soul. I developed a passionate, though casual, connection to the space program, which persists in a childlike part of me, wrapped in wonder.
NEWS
January 26, 2012 | By Thomas Fitzgerald, Inquirer Politics Writer
COCOA, Fla. - Newt Gingrich . . .. to infinity, and beyond! Gingrich, the former House speaker and Republican candidate for president, pledged Wednesday to colonize the moon and develop a "continuous propulsion system" capable of rapid travel to Mars, drawing cheers from a crowd of 700 here on America's "space coast," economically hard hit by cutbacks at NASA. "By the end of my second term, we will have the first permanent base on the moon, and it will be American," Gingrich said, adding that it is a "tragedy" that the U.S. has abandoned manned space flight.
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NEWS
November 8, 2014 | Inquirer Editorial Board
Gone are the inspiring images of heroic astronauts marching toward the gantry, helmets cradled in their arms and smiles on their faces. The latest portrayals of American space travel suggest it has devolved into an odd combination of futuristic trucking firms and pricey amusement park rides. Two commercial spacecraft accidents last month raised serious concerns about private-sector space travel as well as the federal government's broader space policy. Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo disintegrated above California's Mojave Desert on Oct. 31, killing one pilot and injuring another, just days after the liftoff explosion of Orbital Sciences Corp.'s Antares rocket on Wallops Island, Va. Officials from the Federal Aviation Administration, National Transportation Safety Board, and NASA are investigating the accidents.
NEWS
February 3, 2014 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
  Budget cuts scrubbed Northeast High School's acclaimed space research program. Supporters saved it. On Monday - just a few weeks after The Inquirer reported that the Philadelphia School District's budget crunch had killed the trailblazing, NASA-recognized program - it will resume operation. Alumni and friends of "SPARC," as the program is known, have funded it for the rest of the school year with plans to update outdated technology, find industry partnerships, and ensure its long-term survival.
NEWS
December 24, 2013 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
For 50 years, Northeast High School students have taken part in sophisticated simulated space missions that halted asteroids speeding toward Earth, repaired satellites, and landed on the moon. That era is over. Last week, the nationally acclaimed Space Research Center after-school program - and dozens of other academic clubs - were eliminated, yet more victims of the Philadelphia School District's ongoing budget cuts. "It's really, really unfortunate," Northeast junior Leon Frame said.
NEWS
July 12, 2013 | By Jan Hefler, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Burlington County Board of Freeholders unanimously approved a $184.2 million budget Wednesday that calls for a slight rise in the tax rate, increasing revenue by $5 million. The board previously decided to cut the tax rate for the open space program so that in effect, there will be no increase in the tax rate or levy. Freeholder Director Joe Donnelly proposed the cut, noting the rate and levy have not increased over the last five years. He said he wanted to continue the trend.
NEWS
July 11, 2013 | By Jan Hefler, Inquirer Staff Writer
In an election year when control of the Burlington County freeholder board is at stake, the political bantering has begun - and the issues are the budget, taxes, and open space funding. Freeholder Director Joe Donnelly, a Republican up for reelection who speaks for the board, often cites reports showing the county tax rate has stayed flat during his five-year tenure. This year, in order to continue the trend, the GOP-controlled freeholder board changed the way it reports its tax rate and slashed the land preservation budget by more than half.
NEWS
March 24, 2013 | By Tom Avril, Inquirer Staff Writer
A giant blinking eye appears on the screen, followed by a close-up of how optic nerves are connected to the brain. Before long, viewers are whizzing through space. The computer-rendered graphics are worthy of any science-fiction film, but this is a movie about science facts. Called To Space & Back , coproduced by the Franklin Institute and a New Hampshire company called Sky-Scan Inc., the film explores the benefits of space exploration. It started showing daily at the science museum this week.
NEWS
March 21, 2013 | By Sam Wood, PHILLY.COM
When an unexpected visitor comes crashing into Earth with the force of 20 atomic bombs, Congress sits up and notices. And then schedules a meeting. The House of Representatives heard testimony Tuesday about the meteor that surprised the world Feb. 15 when it lit up the Russian sky with the light of a thousand suns. Neither the head of NASA nor the commander of the Air Force Space Command had comforting words for the congressmen. Rep. Bill Posey (R-Fla.) asked what NASA director Charles F. Bolden Jr. what the space agency could do if, with only three weeks notice, a large asteroid was heading on a collision course with our planet.
NEWS
January 31, 2013 | By Sam Kim, Associated Press
SEOUL, South Korea - A South Korean satellite was working normally and transmitting data on its orbit, officials said Thursday, a day after a launch that marked an advance in the country's space program at a time of high tensions over archrival North Korea's recent threat to test a third nuclear device. The South Korean rocket blasted off from a launch pad Wednesday in the southwestern coastal village of Goheung. Science officials told cheering spectators minutes later that the rocket delivered an observational satellite into orbit.
NEWS
January 11, 2013
Living in a state that's so heavily developed, New Jerseyans time and again have shown themselves savvy enough to embrace the need to invest millions of dollars in preserving open space, farmland, and historic sites. Under the umbrella of the Garden State Preservation Trust, the state for more than a decade has earmarked an average of $200 million a year to help keep New Jersey greener. Statewide ballot measures to generate funding have an unbroken record of voter approval going back a number of years.
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