Trump criticizes NASA moon mission

WASHINGTON: U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday criticized NASA for aiming to place astronauts again on the moon by 2024 and urged the house company to focus as a substitute on “a lot greater” initiatives like going to Mars, undercutting his earlier help for the lunar initiative.

“For the entire cash we’re spending, NASA ought to NOT be speaking about going to the Moon – We did that 50 years in the past,” the president wrote on Twitter. “They need to be centered on the a lot greater issues we’re doing, together with Mars (of which the Moon is part), Protection and Science!”

Trump’s assertion, tweeted from Air Power One as he returned from Europe, appeared at odds together with his administration’s current push to return people to the lunar floor by 2024 “by any means obligatory,” 5 years ahead of the earlier objective of 2028.

NASA plans to construct an area outpost in lunar orbit that may relay astronauts to the lunar floor by 2024, a part of a broader initiative to make use of the moon as a staging floor for eventual missions to Mars. NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine mentioned Trump was solely reaffirming NASA’s house plan.

“As @POTUS mentioned, @NASA is utilizing the Moon to ship people to Mars!,” he mentioned on Friday in a tweet referring to the President of the USA. The accelerated timetable to land people on the moon by 2024 bumped into early bother when the Trump administration requested a skeptical Congress in Might to extend NASA’s 2020 price range proposal by $1.6 billion as a “down cost” to accommodate the accelerated objective.

The accelerated timetable for going to the moon was a key advice in March of the brand new Nationwide Area Council led by Vice President Mike Pence.

‘SUSTAINABLE HUMAN PRESENCE’

NASA’s web site on Friday mentioned the Artemis program would ship “the primary lady and the subsequent man to the Moon by 2024 and develop a sustainable human presence on the Moon by 2028.” This system takes its identify from the dual sister of Apollo and the goddess of the moon in Greek mythology.

NASA’s Apollo program landed the primary males on the moon 50 years in the past on July 20.

The NASA web site additionally offered particulars on the house company’s plans for making the moon a leaping off level for future missions to Mars and a spot to check tools and know-how for different forays out into the photo voltaic system.

Trump’s feedback in regards to the U.S. manned house program mirror his need to champion a daring new nationwide goal as he mounts a re-election bid, whereas additionally looking for to counter the potential house weaponry capabilities of Russia and China.

Personal firms are additionally becoming a member of the race to the moon.

Billionaire entrepreneur Jeff Bezos final month unveiled a mock-up of a lunar lander being constructed by his Blue Origin rocket firm and touted his moon objectives as a part of a method aimed toward capitalizing on the Trump administration’s push to determine a lunar outpost in simply 5 years.

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