NASA may soon unveil new manned missions to Moon
- Mali hostage crisis ends as security forces gun down militants; 27 killed
- Sheena Bora case: Peter charged with murder, criminal conspiracy
- Nitish Kumar sworn in as Bihar Chief Minister; Lalu's sons in Cabinet
- UP keeps its distance from Bihar: Why Mulayam, Akhilesh didn't attend Nitish swearing-in
- Madras HC stays cancellation of Greenpeace India registration
NASA is likely to announce new plans to send astronauts back to the Moon following the outcome of the US presidential elections, according to reports.
The space agency was serious about sending astronauts back to the Moon's neighbourhood and will likely unveil its ambitious plans soon now that President Barack Obama has been re-elected, experts say.
The space agency has apparently been thinking about setting up a manned outpost beyond the Moon's far side, both to establish a human presence in deep space and to build momentum towards a planned visit to an asteroid in 2025, the Space.com reported.
The new plans have probably already been cleared with the Obama Administration but were kept under wraps in case Republican candidate Mitt Romney had won presidential election earlier this week, said space policy expert John Logsdon, a professor emeritus at George Washington University.
"NASA has been evolving its thinking, and its latest charts have inserted a new element of cislunar/lunar gateway/Earth-moon L2 sort of stuff into the plan," Logsdon said.
"They've been holding off announcing that until after the election," Logsdon added, noting that Romney had pledged to reassess and possibly revise NASA's missions and direction.
NASA is also likely to be able to achieve these goals within the USD 17.7 billion budget that was outlined in the proposed 2013 federal budget, according to Logsdon.
"They're not talking about plans that imply significant budget increases," Logsdon added: "It gives a more focused use for SLS and Orion before an asteroid mission."
- Modi can leverage foreign policy to repair his domestic image
- Muslims biggest losers from our reservation policy, one that Bhagwat rightly wants reviewed
- If Pak state really cared for its people, it would put national economy above all else
- Despite little coverage in India, the Argentinian presidential election is significant
- Uday lacks a strong, accessible monitoring mechanism critical for its success
- What Mr Mani Shankar Aiyar won’t say