5 June 2014
The National Research Council (NRC) released a report, co-chaired by Cornell University astronomer Jonathan Lunine and former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, saying that NASA needs to focus on sending astronauts to Mars, but will not be able to do so by the 2030s unless it is given a greater budget because the current path is going nowhere. Under current projections, the report found “no viable pathways to Mars,” including the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), which will result in “dead end technologies not needed for Mars.” Instead, a unified human exploration strategy is recommended that would involve international partners like the ISS partners and China. The report comes while there is political fighting over where NASA should go next and debate over whether the Space Launch System is needed and worth the money. (Image Credit: NASA-JPL)
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