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Here's what history has to say about when Trump's NASA administrator will take office

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/19 06:04 CST | 3 comments

This Friday, Charles Bolden resigns as NASA administrator after a stint of 2,744 days. Robert Lightfoot, the agency's highest-ranking civil servant, will take over as acting admin. How long will Lightfoot serve? If history serves as a guide, it could be a while.

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Blitzing Congress for NASA
Or, How I Spent My Day Off in DC

Posted by Bill Gowan on 2017/01/12 11:40 CST

Last February, a group called the Space Exploration Alliance held their annual "legislative blitz," walking the halls of Congress to sway lawmakers toward increased support for NASA's 2017 budget.

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China outlines its space exploration ambitions
Missions to the Moon and Mars will dominate China's focus

Posted by Andrew Jones on 2016/12/27 02:04 CST | 1 comments

China released a new white paper on its policy and activities in space, outlining ambitious deep space exploration, human spaceflight and space science projects as major priorities for the years up to 2020 and beyond.

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Congress Delays Action on NASA's 2017 Budget
A 'continuing resolution' extends NASA's current budget through 2017

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/12/09 01:02 CST | 2 comments

Congress stands ready to punt on NASA's budget, meaning the space program will have to operate on a short budgetary leash until April of next year.

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NASA Under Trump
Policy intentions aside, NASA won't go anywhere with massive cuts to spending

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/11/18 11:22 CST | 3 comments

NASA under a Trump Administration will be hard times for Earth Science, and human spaceflight to the Moon will likely get renewed focus. However, NASA won't go anywhere if massive cuts to spending are enacted as promised.

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ESA opens its ears to citizens of Europe

Posted by Ruth McAvinia on 2016/10/04 10:14 CDT

In September, the European Space Agency gathered 2,000 people around the continent to discuss their future in space.

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An Astronomer Learns to Make His CASE

Posted by Kevin Cooke on 2016/06/24 01:32 CDT

Science in America depends on federal funding, yet many young scientists don't understand how the U.S. government decides to spend its money on science, nor are they encouraged to use their new degrees to advise the process. This is changing with support from the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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Announcing Planetary Radio: Space Policy Edition
New episodes monthly

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2016/06/03 03:46 CDT | 2 comments

Announcing Planetary Radio Extra: Space Policy Edition (PRE:SPE for short)—a new spinoff of Planetary Radio that will delve into the weeds of space policy and politics.

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What NASA Can Learn from SpaceX
A man, a plan, Mars

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/04/28 11:42 CDT | 23 comments

SpaceX's announcement that it will send Dragon capsules to Mars demonstrates the advantage of having a clear plan to explore the red planet. NASA should take note.

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The Senate Just Proposed to Slash Planetary Science Funding
But I'm not worrying—yet

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/04/26 01:54 CDT | 2 comments

The Senate has released its draft of NASA's 2017 budget which, despite increasing NASA's top-line by $300 million, would cut $270 million from the Planetary Science Division. Here's why we shouldn't worry—yet.

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Does Presidential Intervention Undermine Consensus for NASA?
Being on the presidential agenda may induce opposition that could have been avoided

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/04/13 05:54 CDT | 14 comments

Presidents induce polarization on topics they choose to promote. So is the best way for a President to promote consensus in NASA to speak quietly?

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Russia approves its 10-year space strategy

Posted by Anatoly Zak on 2016/03/23 09:20 CDT | 4 comments

After months of delays, the Russian government finally approved the nation’s 10-year space program worth 1.406 trillion rubles ($20.5 billion) last week.

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Challenges to Enabling a Richer Planetary Exploration Program

Posted by Van Kane on 2016/03/21 08:01 CDT | 5 comments

This past week brought to the fore two challenges for NASA’s managers as they try to enable the richest possible mix of coming planetary missions. At stake are whether the agency will be able to select two Discovery missions from the current competition, and whether there will be the possibility of a mission selected for Enceladus and/or Titan in the next decade.

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NASA's New Budget Would Gut Europa But Otherwise Support Planetary Exploration
All these worlds are yours, except for...

Posted by Van Kane on 2016/02/18 08:02 CST | 8 comments

It’s clear that the President’s budget officers really don’t want to fund a mission to Europa. Other than that, the proposed Fiscal Year 2017 budget submitted by the President last week to Congress would be great for planetary exploration.

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Data Dump: NASA's Planetary Science Program By the Numbers
We comb through NASA budget documents so you don't have to

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/02/16 08:58 CST | 3 comments

We provide you the gritty budget breakdown by program and mission for NASA's Planetary Science Division.

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What Does a 'Good' Budget for Planetary Science Look Like?
How to evaluate the coming 2017 budget request and projections

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/02/08 05:31 CST | 1 comments

NASA's 2017 budget request comes out on Tuesday, here's how you can evaluate if the budget for the Planetary Science Division is good or not. It's not just about 2017, but the next five years.

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Three Things to Look for in NASA’s Coming Budget Request
Let the 2017 budget season begin

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/02/04 02:27 CST

The 2017 budget season is almost here. Next week, the White House will release its budget request for NASA. Here are three things I will immediately look for upon its release.

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Europa Budget Bulge

Posted by Van Kane on 2016/01/25 07:04 CST

Van Kane explains how the key development for NASA’s mission to Europa will be an agreement on how the agency plans to accommodate the monetary bulge that will come from funding the mission.

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A Lander for NASA’s Europa Mission

Posted by Van Kane on 2016/01/05 07:03 CST | 9 comments

While there’s at least eight years until it launches, this has been a pivotal year for developing NASA’s Europa mission.

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Could Sino-U.S. cooperation bring The Martian home?

Posted by Yong-Chun Zheng on 2015/11/10 01:03 CST | 1 comments

In the The Martian, NASA astronaut Mark Watney is stranded on Mars. At a critical moment, China offers to help the U.S. bring him back to Earth. But can these two countries cooperate to explore space in reality?

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