Cruz, Nelson Criticize Plan to End Direct ISS Funding in 2025

International Space Station (Credit: NASA)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

Sharply conflicting opinions about the future of the International Space Station (ISS) and America’s path forward in space were on view last week in a Senate hearing room turned boxing ring.

In one corner was NASA Associate Administrator Bill Gerstenamier, representing a Trump Administration that wants to end direct federal funding for ISS in 2025 in order to pursue an aggressive campaign of sending astronauts back to the moon. NASA would maintain a presence in Earth orbit, becoming one of multiple users aboard a privatized ISS or privately-owned stations.

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NASA IG Sees Problems Ahead for SLS, Orion Programs

Space Launch System in flight. (Credit: NASA)
Space Launch System in flight. (Credit: NASA)

The Space Launch System (SLS) and Orion crew vehicle programs are under short-term and long-term budget pressures that could cause significant schedule delays and limit NASA’s ability to conduct human deep-space exploration until the late 2030’s, the space agency’s watchdog said.

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