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Congress Set To Give NASA $19 Billion Budget In 2016

NASA's Commercial Crew program will send astronauts to the International Space Station via commercial partners SpaceX and Boeing. Photo: NASA

Congress unveiled the 2016 budget Wednesday, and NASA is a big winner.

The space agency is set to receive $19.3 billion in funding next year. It’s about $1 billion more than NASA requested.

The agency received about $5 billion for science research, which includes funding for the James Webb Space Telescope.

NASA also received more than $1 billion to fund commercial crew efforts – the move to let private companies launch astronauts to the International Space Station.

It’s the first time Congress appropriated NASA’s full request, said Space Florida’s Dale Ketcham.

“This will enable us to that much sooner tell Vladimir Putin we’re done with his services in terms of getting our astronauts to the international space station,” said Ketcham.

Currently, NASA relies on Russian spacecraft to transport the crew. Private companies SpaceX and Boeing are developing capsules that will transport astronauts to the orbiting station.

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Brendan Byrne

About Brendan Byrne

Space Reporter and 'Intersection' Producer

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts "Are We There Yet?", WMFE's space exploration podcast He also helps produce WMFE's twice-weekly public affairs show "Intersection," working with host Matthew Peddie to shape the ... Read Full Bio »