NASA has made it clear they want astronauts back on the Moon at 2024, and Today , they are zeroing in on the Red Planet – the US space agency confirmed that it Needs People to reach Mars by 2033.
Jim Bridenstine, NASA’s administrator, said Tuesday that in order to attain that goal, other areas of the program – like a lunar landing – need to move forward more quickly.
“We want to attain a Mars landing in 2033,” Bridenstine told lawmakers at a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill.
“We can proceed up the Mars landing by shifting up the Moon landing. The Moon is the proving ground,” added the former Republican congressman, who had been appointed by President Donald Trump.
NASA is racing to enact the plans of Trump, who dispatched Vice President Mike Pence to declare the schedule for once again putting man on the Moon had been cut from four years to 2024.
The date is politically significant: it would be the final season in Trump’s eventual second semester in the White House.
Many experts and lawmakers are worried that NASA cannot make the deadline, particularly given the significant flaws in development of its new heavy-lift rocket, the Space Launch System, which is being constructed by aerospace giant Boeing.
Any mission to Mars would take at least two years, given the distance to be travelled. Getting there alone would require six months, rather than the three times needed to reach the Moon.
A round trip to Mars can only take place as soon as the Red Earth is placed on the same side of the Sun as Earth – which happens about every 26 months, so the dates are 2031, 2033, and so forth.
In 2017, a NASA budget bill set 2033 since the target for the first manned mission to Mars, but NASA itself has talked about the”2030s” in its own roadmap.
NASA would like to understand how to extract and utilize the heaps of ice at the Moon’s south pole.
“Water represents air to breathe, so it represents water to consume, it represents fuel,” Bridenstine explained.
“The intent of course is not to just get people to the surface of the Moon but prove that we can live and work on a different world.”
Democratic lawmaker Eddie Bernice Johnson, the chair of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, requested Bridenstine to put a price tag on the new program.
The NASA chief said he would create his upgraded budget request by April 15.