The Constellation program has been finished off. President Obama is calling on NASA to cancel the program that was to return humans to the Moon by 2020, and focus instead on radically new space technologies.To pay for the new technology development, the budget calls for a complete stop in NASA's Constellation program, the rockets and spacecraft that NASA has been working on for the past four years to replace the space shuttles. The proposal would officially end aspirations to return astronauts to the Moon by 2020 - President George W. Bush's "vision for space exploration" developed in the aftermath of the loss of the space shuttle Columbia in 2003.
In place of the Moon mission, Mr. Obama's vision offers, at least initially, nothing in terms of human exploration of the solar system. What the administration calls a "bold new initiative" does not spell out a next destination or timetable for getting there.
In the meantime. instead of using the Constellation's Ares I rocket and Orion crew capsule to ferry astronauts to the International Space Station, $6 billion would instead go to financing space taxi services from commercial companies.
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