Political Advocacy - Save Our Science!
We are at a crucial turning point in planetary exploration.
After a decade of success with Cassini at Saturn, the twin rovers Spirit and Opportunity, and the take-your-breath-away excitement of the skycrane landing of Curiosity on Mars, NASA's planetary exploration program was rewarded with budget cuts that seriously impair NASA's ability to explore the Solar System.
The White House proposed deep cuts to Planetary Science in 2013 and 2014. But due to overwhelming public support, Congress rejected the full cuts each time.
Now, for the third year in a row, the White House has proposed to cut Planetary Science. A mission to Europa seems possible, but NASA has not yet committed. We need to make this vision a reality. Take a minute and send your representatives a message (or write the President if you're outside the U.S.).
The Opportunity rover and the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter are both zeroed out in NASA's 2015 budget. Learn why these missions face the axe and why the White House is forcing NASA to choose between existing missions and starting new ones. More »
A Report from the First Hearing on the 2015 NASA Budget
2014/03/27 12:07 CDT | 4 comments
An animated NASA Administrator defended the commercial crew program as the fastest way to return to American access to low-Earth orbit in a hearing before the House Space Subcommittee today. More »
Further Analysis of NASA's FY15 Budget Proposal: Steady As She Goes?
2014/03/22 10:23 CDT
The President’s proposed Fiscal Year 2015 budget details were released last week. For the next several years, the budget proposes a steady as she goes plan, but with two “what are they thinking?” surprises. More »
Calling your senators and representatives about NASA's budget isn't that bad. In fact, I just took 15 minutes out of my day to do it! If you're not sure what to say to support planetary exploration, I hope you'll be inspired by what I've transcribed from my phone call this afternoon. More »
The 2015 Planetary Science Budget Situation - A Short Presentation
2014/03/19 12:09 CDT | 2 comments
I gave a talk at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference this year where I summarized the planetary budget situation. Here is that talk. More »
Our Official Response to NASA's 2015 Budget Proposal
2014/03/14 02:06 CDT | 5 comments
The Planetary Society released its stance on the 2015 budget proposal for NASA today. We can't fully support it. More »
[Updated] To Europa!...Slowly. First Impressions of NASA's New Budget Request
2014/03/07 11:20 CST | 5 comments
Europa may get a mission...eventually. We give our first take on the 2015 NASA Budget request. How does Planetary Exploration fare? Which projects were cancelled? Will NASA capture an asteroid? And most importantly, what can you do about it? More »
The Planetary Society cannot fully support this budget. While there are some positive aspects, the request imposes unacceptable cuts to the Science Mission Directorate that damage the immediate and long-term health of some of NASA's most successful programs, particularly planetary exploration. If this budget is passed unchanged, there will be fewer planetary missions in development by 2019 than at any point in the past few decades. Read the Full Statement >>
See the sorry trend of cuts pursued by the White House since 2013, which have reduced the number of missions to explore the solar system. View the Chart >>
Current Planetary Funding Level
Currently funded at $1.345 billion for FY14, below minimum.