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Congressional Bills Set NASA’s Long-Term Goals

Artist's concept of SLS/Orion on the launch pad. Photo: NASA

The “MANIFEST for Human Spaceflight Act of 2017” was filed in the House and Senate – making Mars a key goal in NASA’s long-term, human spaceflight vision.

The bills require a strategic plan for NASA to work its way up to Mars, including missions to cis-lunar space – that’s the area between the Earth and the moon.

The legislation requires the use of NASA’s new rocket system and capsule, the SLS and Orion, to lead exploration into deep space.

Another bill, filed by central Florida Republican Congressman Bill Posey, calls for a return to the moon and the development of a sustained human presence on the lunar surface.

The bills are making their ways through committee in each of the chambers. Congress is responsible for funding NASA’s budget each year.

NASA is currently without a permanent administrator as President Obama’s appointee stepped down after the Trump administration took over, and President Trump has yet to name a new administrator.


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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 »

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