...again in Florida. I know this because I've tried to watch NASA launch a Saturn 5 rocket with a Navy MUOS Communication Satellite twice in two days.
Yesterday's launch was scrubbed by high winds aloft...today those high altitude winds brought a heavy cloud layer with scattered showers that forced NASA to postpone launch until Wednesday February 22nd.
Today's weather shortened NASCAR practice 50 miles north of Cape Canaveral at Daytona International Speedway for Saturday's Budweiser Shootout. The Bud Shootout is the first race of a week of stock car racing culminating in the Daytona 500 next Sunday February 26, 2012
Down at the Cape, John Glenn was in attendance for the two launch attempts, just days ahead of the 50th Anniversary of his historic Friendship 7 Orbital Flight.
This all pains me more than a little...it's all happening against the background of deep NASA budget cuts, and the race to turn the Space Shuttle Fleet into flightless museum pieces before they have flown half the flights they were designed for.
The draconian budget cuts will derail our very successful ongoing Mars Mission, where NASA has been launching every two years maintaining a continuous presence in orbit around the Red Planet and on the Martian surface.
With the Shuttle Fleet effectively scuttled, thousands of high paying high tech jobs are lost, and the money they generated will now be sent to Russia who's shaky Soyuz program now charges double to send astronauts and supplies to our multi-billion dollar International Space Station.
The Saturn 5 is the next generation of heavy lift launchers that will carry our astronauts into orbit once the next generation crew capsule, Orion is ready sometime in 2020. Unmanned test flights are scheduled to begin in 2014.
Now I'm no CPA, but the ledger seems to be tipped in Russia's favor...more outsourcing Washington? No kidding...