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Space Policy

House Introduces Space Leadership Preservation Act

On Sept. 20, six members of the U.S. House of Representatives introduced the Space Leadership Preservation Act (H.R. 6491), which is aimed at providing NASA with more stability and predictability. Among other things H.R. 6491 would do are: Create a 10-year term for the NASA administrator Establish a board of directors to provide a quadrennial…

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Senate Committee Hearing Raises Beyond-LEO Concerns

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation held a hearing last month on “The Path from LEO to Mars,” which examined NASA’s exploration portfolio, both robotic and human, beyond low-Earth orbit (LEO) to the surface of Mars. Steve Squyres, Ph.D., testified that there are two areas of concern regarding getting beyond LEO and eventually…

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Industry Stresses Need for Continued SLS, Orion Crew Capsule Funding

The U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics, Committee on Science, Space and Technology held a hearing in September on “Examining NASA’s Development of the Space Launch System and Orion Crew Capsule” at which representatives from industry testified that Orion is currently advancing toward its Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1) in 2014. EFT-1 mission…

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FAA Update: Subcommittee Looks at Commercial Launch; House Appropriations Bill Approved; MOU Signed

Subcommittee Looks at Commercial Launch Market The House Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics held a hearing in June on “An Examination of Future Commercial Launch Markets & FAA’s Launch Indemnification Program.” The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) launch indemnification program was created in the 1980s to provide a structured risk-sharing regime to…

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NASA and the Future of Human Spaceflight

The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Subcommittee on Science and Space held a hearing in June on “Risks, Opportunities and Oversight of Commercial Space.” According to NASA Associate Administrator of Human Exploration and Operations William H. Gerstenmaier, commercial space will provide NASA an opportunity to obtain critical services to the ISS at a reduced cost…

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Congressional Legislative Updates

The House of Representatives has approved the Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 Commerce, Justice, Science (CJS) Appropriations bill (H.R. 5326), which funds several federal agencies, including NASA and NOAA. The House bill would provide NASA with $17.447 billion in FY 2013, $263 million below the President’s request. In addition, the House bill would provide $4.961 billion…

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