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Pence pledges that United States will go to the moon, Mars and beyond
06 October 2017, 12:45 | Clyde Nash
Enlarge Vice President Mike Pence speaks at Kennedy Space Center earlier this
"We will return American astronauts to the moon, not only to leave behind footprints and flags, but [also] to build the foundation we need to send Americans to Mars and beyond", Pence said today (Oct. 5) at the first meeting of the newly reinstated National Space Council (NSC).
Within the next few weeks, the administration will form a Users' Advisory Group comprised of various leaders in the commercial space industry. And they're promising that in five years, astronauts could be working around the moon.
The location of the first ever meeting of the National Space Council, with Space Shuttle Discovery in the background.
Indeed, as Pence put it, "Business is leading the way on space technology, and we intend to draw from the bottomless well of innovation to solve the challenges ahead".
The National Space Council met Thursday for the first time in 25 years in an effort to return the United States to the forefront of space exploration.
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"Today, in the shadow of this history, we pledge to do what America has always done: We will push the boundaries of human knowledge", he said. Trump re-established the National Space Council in an executive order signed in June. Mars may be a medium-to-long-term goal, but NASA should use the moon as a jumping-off point.
According to NASA, the council was known as the National Aeronautics and Space Council from 1958 to 1973, and as the National Space Council from 1989 to 1993. The representatives of these companies discussed how their organizations could best serve NASA in achieving its goals, either by providing rockets and services or by building new space vehicles.
"The U.S. pays Russian Federation more than $76 million a seat to carry American astronauts to the International Space Station, since we have no vehicle capable of performing this task", Pence wrote. "We can only decide to match and raise our adversaries who are already weaponizing space", former NASA chief Michael Griffin said. 'But now we start again'. Perhaps we'll see some changes to the budget later this year, or perhaps with the president's budget request early next year.
"Renew America's commitment to creating the space technology needed to protect national security".
He said the Space Council's mandate is to find a way to maintain 'a constant commercial, human presence in low-Earth orbit'.
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