Board Exam Result 2019

NASA dubs 2024 Moon mission 'Artemis,' asks for US dollar 1.6 billion

Washington, AFP | Updated : 14 May 2019, 12:30 PM
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine told reporters on Monday the agency would need an additional USD 1.6 billion to pay for the new ground and space vehicles
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine told reporters on Monday the agency would need an additional USD 1.6 billion to pay for the new ground and space vehicles

NASA’s next mission to the Moon will be called Artemis, the US space agency has announced, though it’s still looking for the money to make the journey happen by its accelerated 2024 deadline. In March, US President Donald Trump’s administration moved the date for the next American lunar mission up by four years from its original goal of 2028 while pledging to get a female astronaut to the Moon’s surface for the first time.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine told reporters on Monday the agency would need an additional USD 1.6 billion to pay for the new ground and space vehicles needed to meet the deadline.

“This additional investment, I want to be clear, is a down payment on NASA’s efforts to land humans on the Moon by 2024,” he said.

Bridenstine said the mission was named Artemis after the Greek mythological goddess of the Moon and twin sister to Apollo, namesake of the program that sent 12 American astronauts to the Moon between 1969 and 1972.

NASA’s total annual budget is approximately USD 21.5 billion, and in the 2019 fiscal year, the agency spent about USD 4.5 billion on developing the Orion spacecraft, the Space Launch System (SLS) heavy rocket and a new lunar orbital mini-station, three elements essential to the Artemis mission.

But many experts and lawmakers are concerned that NASA cannot meet the accelerated deadline, especially given the major delays in development of the SLS, which is being built by aerospace giant Boeing.

Asked how much the new mission would cost in total, Bridenstine demurred, telling a reporter: “I would love to tell you that." 

First Published: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 12:30 PM
For all the latest Science News Download the News Nation App available on Android and iOS.