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  2013 U.S. National Space Transportation Policy

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Author Topic:   2013 U.S. National Space Transportation Policy
Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 28179
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 11-21-2013 09:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
White House release
National Space Transportation Policy

Space activities are critical to the nation’s technological advancement, scientific discovery, security, and economic growth. As outlined in the National Space Policy, the utilization of space has transformed every aspect of society, and the United States remains committed to maintaining its role as the leading space-faring nation.

Space transportation capabilities play a vital role in enabling these space activities by providing the United States with access to diverse regions of space.

The U.S. space transportation sector is undergoing a period of change as new actors and capabilities emerge and nontraditional public-private partnerships are established. At the same time, the sector faces challenges to include increased proliferation concerns and international competition.

To assure continued leadership in this arena, it is essential that the United States foster more efficient and capable space transportation systems and approaches that can address such challenges and enable new activities and discoveries in and from space.

Maintaining an assured capability to meet United States government needs, while also taking the necessary steps to strengthen U.S. competitiveness in the international commercial launch market, is important to ensuring that U.S. space transportation capabilities will be reliable, robust, safe, and affordable in the future.

Among other steps, improving the cost effectiveness of U.S. space transportation services could help achieve this goal by allowing the United States government to invest a greater share of its resources in other needs such as facilities modernization, technology advancement, scientific discovery, and national security.

Further, a healthier, more competitive U.S. space transportation industry would facilitate new markets, encourage new industries, create high technology jobs, lead to greater economic growth and security, and would further the nation’s leadership role in space.

Read: 2013 United States National Space Transportation Policy (PDF)

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 28179
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 11-21-2013 09:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Coalition for Space Exploration release
New National Space Transportation Policy Reaffirms that Investment in Space is a Good Investment for the Future of Our Nation

The Coalition for Space Exploration congratulates the Administration on signing a balanced National Space Transportation Policy allowing NASA to continue to expand domestic commercial space industry access to low Earth orbit, while continuing to develop the heavy lift launch capability needed to take humans to Mars and other deep space destinations. With so many important issues facing our nation's decision makers, this shows that they have not lost focus on the critical space exploration sector, which has been proven time and time again that it is one of the best investments the government makes for the realized return.

"The space industry at large fosters technology development, spurs economic growth, and inspires youth to attain high-tech careers" said George Torres, chair of the Coalition for Space Exploration. "A balanced approach between government and commercial efforts will help spur innovation and technology development in a more cost-effective manner than ever done before."

This long-term vision is also indicative of the maturity of our industry. Since we have been sending crews to low Earth orbit since 1961, these capabilities have matured so NASA can outsource these efforts in order to focus on more difficult missions. However, humans have not traveled beyond low Earth orbit since the last crew walked on the Moon in 1972. With the continued development of the Orion crew capsule and the Space Launch System (SLS), our nation will have the capability to take the next significant steps into deep space. SLS enables the most far reaching human space exploration, but it is also an absolute game-changer for ambitious robotic missions to the outer planets and large unprecedented astronomical observatories.

Recent events have shown that other nations recognize the value of space exploration, with both Russia and China announcing plans for heavy lift launch capabilities. Providing NASA with the necessary resources to push the boundaries of deep space exploration enables us to pursue new and enduring technologies which will maintain America's position as a world leader in many economic and scientific fields.

We look forward to our industry's accomplishments on the horizon, including stepping stone missions over the next decade that will lead us to lay footprints on Mars in the 2030's. The SLS and Orion enable these stepping stone missions to begin in 2017, with increasingly difficult steps throughout the 2020's. With support from the Administration, the combination of SLS and Orion will effectively establish a highway to the entire solar system, paving the way for new technology, fueling economic growth, creating new jobs and inspiring youth for generations to come.

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