News and Commentary on Space
As analysts had expected, a stark financial and resource refocusing is underway at NASA in which robotic efforts will be planned less for pure science and more for supporting future human spaceflight.
The first mission to the Moon will likely be an orbiter that generates NASA’s first digital map of the pockmarked world, officials said Wednesday. It will be a reconnaissance craft designed to help prepare for a return of astronauts as early as 2015, as envisioned last month by President George W. Bush.
The second new lunar foray, in 2009, will be with a robotic lander whose goals are not yet clear.
“These missions will not be driven by science,” said Ed Weiler, associate administrator for the NASA’s Office of Space Science. “They will be driven by preparations for human landings.”
Music to my ears.
A young girl sets out to prove herself by resolving a long-forgotten mystery. But when she gets close to the truth, what she thought was a harmless adventure becomes a threat to the future of the independent commercial settlements on Mars.