NASA could receive $500 million more next year and A mission to "Europa"

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President Obama desires to give NASA’s missions a big lift. Monday afternoon, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden updated the nation on the state of its space agency, mentioning that the Obama administration is suggesting an $18.5 billion financial plan for NASA for the 2016 fiscal year. That’s about $500 million more than the agency got for 2015.

The resources are intended at covering the expenses of NASA’s ongoing, manned deep-space exploration projects, such as sending cosmonauts to Mars. But money is also being set aside for some new, very thrilling projects. The project we're most eager about is a journey to Jupiter’s moon, Europa; it's a big applicant for discovering possible life elsewhere in our solar system, and now that the White House has permitted the mission, it can at last begin.


Of course, much of the money is dedicated on getting to our red neighbour first. About $8.51 billion of the suggested budget is assigned to human exploration, and a large lump of that--$2.863 billion--will go to the Orion Crew Capsule and Space Launch System. Named NASA’s “monster” rocket, the SLS is at present in progress at the Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, and executives hope to use the vehicle to send the astronaut-carrying Orion to Mars sometime in the 2030s.

"[NASA] is firmly on a journey to Mars. Make no mistake, this journey will help guide and define our generation,” Bolden said on Monday.

The rest of the human exploration budget is geared to maintaining the ISS ($3.106 billion), as well as financing the space taxis that will transport American cosmonauts to the orbiting laboratory. Over the Commercial Crew Program, NASA bestowed private companies SpaceX and Boeing with agreements to design and build crew vehicles that will ship astronauts to and from the ISS. Under the projected budget, the program will get $1.244 billion for 2016, indicating a $400 million rise from the 2015 Commercial Crew budget. Bolden says the amplified allotment will support both companies reach the goal of operating space station flights by 2017.

However the really fascinating stuff lies in the budget for science, which will get $5.288 billion. Whereas $1.947 billion of that is going to Earth science (e.g. upholding its SMAP satellite), $1.361 billion is going to planetary science, and that comprises capital for a long-awaited robotic mission to Europa. The satellite is supposed to house a vast ocean beneath its icy crust, leading many researchers to wonder if the waters are home to organic life. Even though Congress provided NASA $100 million to start the design process on a Europa mission in 2015, the projected White House budget will add on $30 million. And with NASA being a supervisory branch agency, President Obama’s sanction means NASA can now get started on the project.

This post was written by Usman Abrar. To contact the writer write to iamusamn93@gmail.com. Follow on Facebook

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