From: Coalition for Deep Space Exploration
Posted: Monday, March 26, 2018
The Coalition for Deep Space Exploration (Coalition) applauds the enactment of the FY 2018 Omnibus Appropriations Act, which includes a record $21.7 billion funding level for NASA, including strong funding levels for the agency’s exploration and space science programs. The bill increased funding for NASA by more than $1 billion above the FY 2017 levels, with a nearly $500 million increase to space science missions, nearly $500 million increase for human exploration systems and nearly $100 million increase for space technology programs.
Within these appropriations, NASA’s flagship human exploration systems, the Space Launch System (SLS), Orion and Exploration Ground Systems, received full funding to maintain schedule for Exploration Mission-1 and to fly crew to lunar orbit as early as possible on Exploration Mission-2. The funding provides for continued development of the Exploration Upper Stage, the construction of a second Mobile Launcher to accelerate mission cadence for upcoming deep space missions and other associated mission components. The bill provides incremental funding authority for these programs, which allows NASA to better plan and procure systems for future missions.
The Omnibus also provides full funding for the James Webb Space Telescope, WFIRST development activities, Europa Clipper and Lander missions, and Mars 2020, among other missions. The Planetary, Astrophysics and Heliophysics divisions all received increased funding above the FY 2017 levels in the Omnibus. The Coalition also supports the strong funding levels for thermal nuclear propulsion included in the Space Technology Directorate to support advanced propulsion for future exploration missions.
“The strong funding levels provided in the Omnibus for NASA demonstrates the continued bipartisan commitment in Congress for our nation’s human exploration and space science programs,” said Dr. Mary Lynne Dittmar, CEO and President of the Coalition for Deep Space Exploration. “Chairman Culberson, Ranking Member Serrano, Chairman Shelby and Ranking Member Sheheen should be commended for their leadership in developing a final bill that supports the broad range of NASA’s exploration, science and technology priorities.”
About the Coalition for Deep Space Exploration
The Coalition for Deep Space Exploration is a national organization of more than 70 space industry businesses and advocacy groups focused on ensuring the United States remains a leader in space, science and technology. Based in Washington D.C., the Coalition engages in outreach and education reinforcing the value and benefits of human space exploration and space science with the public and our nation’s leaders, building lasting support for a long-term, sustainable, strategic direction for our nation’s space program.
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