NASA to study moon samples brought back by Apollo missions

Jan Cross
March 14, 2019

NASA's missions and ranks today may be inching closer to some semblance of equality, but Hidden Figures depicted better than anyone how different the reality was during the Apollo moon missions.

SLS and Orion are expected to be ready for their first uncrewed test flight in 2020. The Space Station has had two decades of successful operations in orbit and is the world's largest cooperative programme in science and technology, with over 100 countries having used it for research and education. "The goal is to get back on track", Bridenstine told a Senate committee.

Boeing is using more than 1,000 subcontractors in 43 USA states to get the job done.

Bridenstine said NASA found out last week that SLS faces another delay from the original plan to launch for the first time in 2020 on a flight called Exploration Mission 1 (EM-1). But Bridenstine said the agency had recently been informed that there was going to be yet another schedule delay in what's known as Exploration Mission-1, or EM-1.

"Other teams will be studying samples that have also been specially curated, some from Apollo 17 that were brought to Earth and then kept frozen, and samples from the Apollo 15 mission which have been stored in helium since 1971", NASA added. "Every moment counts." He conceded that additional "help" might be needed from Congress to pay for it.

Congress directed NASA to build SLS in the 2010 NASA Authorization Act and specified its capabilities in law. Funding for the development of the rocket in 2020 will account for $1.7 billion of NASA's budget, down by $375 million from 2019.

Trump's budget request also included plans faster return to the moon than is now scheduled.

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Republicans and Democrats in Congress were outraged at the abrupt cancellation of Constellation.

Anne McClain is a Washington native and NASA astronaut.

The announcement was a blow for Boeing, one of the prime contractors on the SLS rocket, as it was facing serious repercussions in the wake of the crashes involving its 737 Max 8 airplane. NASA kept Orion as the MPCV.

He did not specify which private company he had in mind, but SpaceX - founded by billionaire Elon Musk - would be a natural candidate with its Falcon Heavy rocket.

In the end, Congress will have to decide whether to pass the space budget as is or request changes that would preserve the SLS program's place in upcoming missions.

Note: This article was updated with the quote from ULA.

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