The Planetary Society has released its official response to the President’s 2015 NASA budget request, in which it decries the hundreds of millions of dollars of cuts to NASA’s science programs. NASA’s Planetary Science Division, which launches all robotic missions to destinations within the solar system, has been cut for the third year in a row, despite consistent congressional and public support.
The Planetary Society, co-founded by Carl Sagan and today the world’s leading space interest group, has announced a donation of $4.2 million, the largest single donation in its history. The donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, is a member of the Society.
The Planetary Society cannot fully support the FY2015 NASA Budget Request. 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.
CubeSats have made low-cost space missions a reality for universities and research groups. However, these tiny satellites lack propulsion. LightSail will demonstrate the viability of solar sailing for CubeSats.
Planetary Deep Drill is the first drill of its kind. Honeybee intends to fulfill one of the biggest needs for subsurface planetary exploration: lightweight, portable drills that pack enough punch to probe deep beneath planetary surfaces.
Let's Change the World
Become a member of The Planetary Society and together we will create the future of space exploration.