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Showing posts from August, 2018

NASA Administrator Bridenstine says US will launch astronauts from US soil next year

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We really are going back to the moon and then on to Mars

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The significance of Vice President Mike Pence’s recent speech at the Johnson Spaceflight Center was not that it made any new news, but the fact that it was made at all. One of the failings of the deep space exploration programs of both presidents Bush was that, after the initial speeches that announced them, going back to the moon and on to Mars were hardly mentioned at all. President Trump, to his credit, rarely makes a campaign speech without mentioning NASA, not to mention his proposed Space Force.

Pence’s purpose in speaking before the assembled at NASA's Johnson Space Center was to demonstrate that the Trump administration, perhaps unlike some of its predecessors, really means it. As NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine has said more than once, this is not Lucy and the football again. We really are going back to the moon and then on to Mars.

Pence’s speech lacked much of the soaring rhetoric of, say, the famous Rice University address made by President John F. Kennedy. The fac…

Pence outlines plan for new Space Force by 2020

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Faced with growing competition and threats from Russia and China, the White House on Thursday said it will create the U.S. Space Force as a sixth, separate military service by 2020.

Vice President Mike Pence told a Pentagon audience that the plan fulfills President Donald Trump's vow to ensure America's dominance in space — a domain that was once peaceful and uncontested that has now become crowded and adversarial.

"Now the time has come to write the next great chapter in the history of our armed forces, to prepare for the next battlefield where America's best and bravest will be called to deter and defeat a new generation of threats to our people, to our nation," said Pence. "The time has come to establish the United States Space Force."

Trump marked Pence's announcement with a tweet: "Space Force all the way!"

Trump has called for a "separate but equal" space force, a complicated and expensive move that requi…