NASA budget

So it seems that a Senate panel have approved President Bush's plan for exploring the Moon, Mars and beyond with humans. This plan has caused some concern among scientists as it squeezes budgets on important science programmes within NASA. However, things aren't as bleak as they may have appeared for astronomy and science as the Senate committee are concerned too:

While the Committee applauds those goals, it is concerned that the strong, balanced science program that has served the Nation so successfully for many years could be left behind instead of being nurtured and sustained. That science program has been based on a set of carefully crafted scientific strategies that are founded on scientific and technical merit, relevance to overall national needs, and broad consultation with the scientific community. NASA is encouraged to look for ways to maintain a balance with the productive science NASA is known for and currently has underway, while taking the steps to fulfill the exploration vision.

The committee go on to advise that the US segment of the ISS is turned into a national facility and shuttle capability is retained until a replacement is actually working. They even recommend an increase of USD250,000,000 to provide a servicing mission to Hubble. Fantastic!

These astronomical sums of money - NASA's budget is over USD16,000,000,000 - make the UK's £175,000,000 space budget look quite pathetic really.

Posted in astro blog by Stuart on Saturday 25th Jun 2005 (00:14 UTC) | Permalink
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