Griffin Drafts DARPA to Create DOD Space Development Agency

Mike Griffin

SpaceNews reports that Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering Mike Griffin has drafted DARPA to help put together the DOD’s Space Development Agency, which is designed to help cut through red tape to develop new systems rapidly.

In a Dec. 6 memo titled, “Space Development Agency Study Team Direction and Tasking,” Griffin directed Fred Kennedy, director of DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office, to lead a study team and come up with recommendations for the “implementation of the Space Development Agency.”

A DoD source shared the contents of the memo with SpaceNews. The memo was sent to key leaders across the department, including the secretaries of the military services, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, U.S. Strategic Command, as well as the director of the National Reconnaissance Office.

Kennedy was not given a lot of time to complete the study. “I expect this effort will require 45 to 60 days,” Griffin wrote. The DARPA team has to provide an “interim progress report” within 30 days to Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and the space governance committee.

NASA’s Lunar Plans Panned by National Space Council’s Users Group

The Lunar Gateway formerly known as the Deep Space Gateway (Credit: NASA)

SpaceNews reports that NASA’s plan to put a lunar gateway in orbit around the moon and get astronauts down to the surface in 2028 took quite a pounding from some members of the National Space Council’s Users’ Advisory Group during the body’s first meeting last week.

“Personally, I think 2028 for humans on the moon, that’s 10 years from now. It just seems like it’s so far off,” said former astronaut Eileen Collins. “We can do it sooner.”
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Wilson, Griffin at Odds Over How to Create Military Space Development Agency

Mike Griffin

Space News reports that Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson and former NASA administrator Mike Griffin, who serves as undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, are at odds over how to create a new space development agency designed to transform how the military creates advanced space technologies.

In her memo, Wilson suggests the Space Development Agency should be organized under the existing Space Rapid Capabilities Office and that it should be geographically and organizationally connected to U.S. Space Command. She recommends using “existing structures designed and chartered to acquire capabilities rapidly, rather than establishing new structures.”

Griffin is proposing a new D.C.-based agency with a staff of 112 government personnel that would report to him initially, but eventually would shift to the control of a new assistant secretary of defense for space, an office that would first have to be approved by Congress.

In Wilson’s plan, the Space Development Agency and other acquisition organizations would transition to the new Department of the Space Force. She pointedly pushes back on the idea of having an assistant secretary of defense for space or a Space Development Agency that reports to that office. She argues that such a setup would create additional bureaucracy that would be removed from the operators who use and maintain the equipment.

The space development agency is part of an effort by the Trump Administration to establish an independent space force within the Department of Defense.

Trump Nominates Mike Griffin for Defense Post

Former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin

President Donald Trump has nominated former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin to serve as principal deputy under secretary of defense for acquisition, technology, and logistics.

Griffin, who led the space agency from 2005 to 2009, was most recently chairman and CEO of the Schafer Corporation, a provider of scientific, engineering, and technical services and products in the national security sector.

In his new position, Griffin will serve as the principal staff assistant and advisor to the secretary of Defense and deputy secretary of Defense for all matters concerning acquisition, technology, and logistics.

During his stint at NASA, Griffin established the architecture for space shuttle replacement and human return to the Moon and initiated the first development of commercial cargo delivery service to Earth orbit in the agency’s history.

He is a recipient of the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal, the AIAA Space Systems Medal, and the Department of Defense Distinguished Public Service Medal.

Dr. Griffin is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University, the Catholic University of America, the University of Maryland, the University of Southern California, Loyola College; and George Washington University.

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New NASA Administrator Names: Bridenstine, Griffin, Collins & Albrecht

Rep. Jim Bridenstine
Rep. Jim Bridenstine

Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK) is a leading candidate  to replace Charlie Bolden as the new NASA Administrator when President Barack Obama’s term ends in January.

“He’s made it clear to the campaign that if asked to serve as NASA Administrator or Air Force secretary, he would be willing,” the official said. The person added that there would likely be “a clearer path to NASA” than the Air Force.

Other names that have been circulated include: former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin, who served under President George W. Bush; former astronaut Collins, who spoke during the Republican National Convention in support of Trump; and space veteran Mark Albrecht, who served as executive secretary of the National Space Council under President George H.W. Bush.

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Why the Space Leadership Preservation Act Solves Nothing

Michael Griffin, Eileen Collins and Cristina Chaplain testify (Credit: House Science Committee)
Michael Griffin, Eileen Collins and Cristina Chaplain testify (Credit: House Science Committee)

By House Science Committee Democrats

WASHINGTON, DC  – Today, the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology held a hearing to receive testimony on H.R. 2093, the Space Leadership Preservation Act, and to consider the issue of maintaining a “constancy of purpose” for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The Committee also held a hearing on the Space Leadership Preservation Act last Congress.
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Why the Space Leadership Preservation Act is Necessary

Capitol Building
By House Science Committee Republicans

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The House Science, Space, and Technology Committee today held a hearing on The Space Leadership Preservation Act and the need for stability at NASA. The hearing featured input from former astronaut and first female Space Shuttle pilot and commander, Eileen Collins, former NASA Administrator Michael Griffin, and Rep. John Culberson, author of the Space Leadership Preservation Act.

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Hearing on Space Leadership Preservation Act Set for Thursday

Capitol Building
Full House Science Committee Hearing

The Space Leadership Preservation Act and the Need for Stability at NASA
Thursday, February 25, 2016 – 10:00 am

Witnesses

Panel 1:

The Honorable John Culberson
Member, U.S. House of Representatives

Panel 2:

The Honorable Michael Griffin
Former Administrator, NASA

Colonel Eileen Collins
USAF (Retired); NASA Astronaut, Commander, STS-93 and 114; NASA Astronaut, Pilot, STS-63 and 94

Ms. Cristina Chaplain
Director of Acquisition and Sourcing Management, U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO)

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This Week on The Space Show

spaceshowlogo
This Week on The Space Show with Dr. David Livingston:

1. Monday, Sept. 15, 2014: 2-3:30 PM PDT (5-6:30 PM EDT, 4-5:30 PM CDT): We welcome back DR. ERIK SEEDHOUSE regarding his new book, “Beyond Human: Engineering Our Future Evolution.”

2. Tuesday, Sept. 16 , 2014:,7-8:30 PM PDT (10-11:30 PM EDT, 9-10:30 PM CDT): We welcome back DR. MIKE GRIFFIN, former NASA Administrator and current CEO of Schafer Corp.

3. Friday, Sept. 19, 2014, 9:30 -11 AM PDT (12;30-2 PM EDT; 11:30-1 PM CDT): We welcome STEWART MONEY to discuss is new best selling book, “Here Be Dragons: The Rise of SpaceX and the Journey to Mars.”

4. Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014, 12-1:30 PM PDT (3-4:30 PM EDT, 2-3:30 PM CDT). We welcome back noted space and science writer MICHAEL BELFIORE. Check out his website at http://michaelbelfiore.com.

Mike Griffin to Drop By The Space Show

spaceshowlogo
This week on The Space Show with David Livingston:

1. Monday, Oct. 28, 2013, 2-3:30 PM PDT (5-6:30 PM EDT, 4-5:30 PM CDT): No show as final day of setting up after moving the studio location.

2. Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013, 7-8:30 PM PDT (10-11:30 PM EDT, 9-10:30 PM CDT): We welcome back to the program DR. MIKE GRIFFIN, former NASA Administrator.

3. Friday, Nov. 1, 2013, 9:30-11 AM PDT (11:30- 1 PM CDT, 12:30PM-2:00 PM EDT): We welcome back DR. ANITA SENGUPTA OF JPL

4. Sunday, Nov. 3, 2013, 12-1:30 PM PDT (3-4:30 PM EDT, 2-3:30 PM CDT). We welcome back RICHARD EASTON along with ERIC FRAZIER to discuss their new book, “GPS Declassified: From Smart Bombs to Smartphones.”

Ex-NASA Chief Mike Griffin Takes Over as Schafer Corporation CEO

Former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin

WASHINGTON, Aug 14, 2012 (Schafer PR) — Schafer Corporation, a leading provider of scientific, engineering, and technical services and products applied to defeating national security threats, today announced that Michael D. Griffin will assume the role of Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

Griffin is the former Administrator of the National Aeronautics & Space Administration (NASA), serving in that position from 2005 to 2009. In addition to spending ten years at NASA in various capacities, he has also served in a variety of senior government, commercial, and academic roles, including Deputy Director for Technology of the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization, Director and CEO of Magellan, Inc., Professor of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, and Space Department Head at Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Laboratory.

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Cleveland Has More to Worry About From Romney than Obama

Former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin

By Douglas Messier
Parabolic Arc Managing Editor

When Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney unveiled his space advisory group at the end of January, one might reasonably have expected that the group would have gone to work producing some sort of plan for the candidate to run on in relatively short order.

Five months later, there is no sign of such a document. However, two members of that body — former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin and his former deputy, Scott Pace — showed up in Cleveland this week to scare people with allegations that the  Obama Administration plans to cut back staff at the NASA Glenn Research Center.

They failed to mention, however, that Romney’s budget proposals would cut NASA’s spending plan even more.

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Mike Griffin to Unveil Non-Partisan Space Policy Goals

Former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin

AIAA President to Call for Space Exploration Policy Goals Which Transcend Partisan Political Concerns

Event Features AIAA President Dr. Michael Griffin

What:

The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) will call on Congress to establish space exploration policy goals which transcend partisan political differences, enhancing the future of the US space program and its ability to cooperate more fully with its international partners.

When:

12:15 p.m. – 1:00 p.m., Tuesday, May 22

Where:

The Marquette Room, L’Enfant Plaza Hotel, 480 L’Enfant Plaza Southwest, Washington, D.C. held in conjunction with the Global Space Exploration Conference, May 22 – 24

Who:

Dr. Michael Griffin, president, AIAA, and King-McDonald Eminent Scholar and Professor, University of Alabama in Huntsville

Editor’s Note: This ought to be interesting. Griffin has done nothing but try to derail the current Administration’s space agenda. He is a member of space advisory board for Mitt Romney’s campaign. And he’d probably like nothing more than to have his old job back as NASA administrator in a Romney government.

All these activities are within his rights as an American. I’m just not sure he should be espousing on  what qualifies as non-partisan space policy goals on behalf of an organization that is supposed to be largely above politics. He has to wear two hats here. It will be interesting to see how he manages it.

I have similar misgivings about Eric Anderson, who is also advising Romney on space policy while serving as chairman of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation. He’s working to get Romney elected at the same time the federation he chairs needs all hands on deck to help push the Obama Administration’s space policy through Congress.  The more successful the federation is at the latter, the more difficult the former objective becomes.

Is Paul Allen Buying Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne?

Paul Allen

Here’s an interesting bit of news from Aviation Week:

United Technologies Corp. (UTC) is expected to complete the sale of its Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne rocket propulsion arm within the next two weeks as part of efforts to raise $3 billion to help finance its acquisition of Goodrich Corp….

The group believed to be most strongly linked to the acquisition is thought to involve Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, former Scaled Composites CEO Burt Rutan and former NASA administrator Mike Griffin. The three are behind Stratolaunch Systems, the company founded in late 2011 to develop a next-generation, mobile, airborne launch system based on a hybrid aircraft formed from two Boeing 747s (Aerospace DAILY, Dec. 14). Another board member of Stratolaunch is Dave King, vice president of Dynetics, the Huntsville, Ala.-based company that will be responsible for integration of the launch vehicle and carrier aircraft systems.

It’s a bit of a puzzle why they would be purchasing PWR if they’re using Space Falcon rockets for Stratolaunch. A possible explanation is that they have other projects in mind that would use the company’s expertise.

We’ll follow this story and let you know more as information becomes available.

Read the full story.

SFF to Romney: Fire Mike Griffin From Space Advisory Board

Mitt Romney. (Credit: Gage Skidmore)

SFF PR — Jacksonville, FL — During last night’s Republican presidential debate, Governor Mitt Romney stated that “a moonbase would be an enormous expense,” and later stated that if someone had come to him saying they had wanted to spend a few hundred billion dollars to put a colony on the moon, he would’ve said “You’re fired.”

Today, it was revealed that former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin is member of the Romney Space Policy Advisory Group. This is the same NASA Administrator who was the chief architect of an unaffordable and unsustainable plan to return humans to the Moon that would have cost about $200 Billion.

We can only assume that Gov. Romney did not know who Mike Griffin is or what he did as NASA Administrator when he asked Griffin to serve in his group of space policy leaders. At the time of its cancellation, the Augustine Committee, a national committee composed of military, civilian and commercial space leaders, concluded that Mike Griffin’s strategy would only work if NASA received a $3 Billion per year budget increase to $22 Billion. This would result in a total cost that was almost $200 Billion.

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