SOFIA grounded?!

That’s right.  NASA’s 2015 budget proposes grounding the SOFIA observatory, a huge gamma-ray telescope mounted in the side of a 747.  It’s a beautiful instrument, and it’s only recently become fully operational, but NASA’s budget is limited.  Indeed, this decision was made entirely from the budget office, without any input from (or even warning to) the astronomers and JPL engineers who operate the aircraft.  Unless Congress decides to fight for SOFIA (which seems unlikely), the only hope for keeping it flying next year is for the Germans to supply the necessary funding.  If they don’t, it’ll be parked at Dryden Flight Research Center once the current budget cycle is over.

http://spaceflightnow.com/news/n1403/06sofia/#.UxlEyP07UjI

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