NASA Announces Fiscal Year 2010 Budget
WASHINGTON -- NASA announced Thursday an $18.69 billion budget for fiscal year 2010 to advance Earth science, complete the International Space Station, explore the solar system and conduct aeronautics research. The budget request represents an increase of $903.6 million, or 5 percent, above funding provided in the fiscal year 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act. All totaled, an additional $2 billion has been added to NASA's 2009 and 2010 budgets under the Obama administration.
NASA's fiscal year 2010 request funds a robust program to continue the agency's missions of exploration and research. It supports the administration's commitment to deploy a global climate change research and monitoring system. It funds a strong program of space exploration involving humans and robots with the goal of returning Americans to the moon and exploring other destinations. And it supports the safe flight of the space shuttle to complete assembly of the International Space Station by the shuttle's planned retirement.
Funds freed by the shuttle's retirement will support development of systems to deliver people and cargo to the station, the moon and other destinations. As part of the effort, NASA will invest in private-sector development and the demonstration of vehicles to support the agency's human crew and cargo spaceflight requirements.
With the fiscal year 2010 budget request, NASA will advance global climate change research. NASA's investment in Earth science research satellites, airborne sensors, computer models and analysis has revolutionized scientific knowledge and predictions of climate change and its effects. Using the National Research Council's recommended priorities for space-based Earth science research, NASA will develop new sensors to support the administration's goal of deploying a global climate research and monitoring system.
The budget request also renews NASA's commitment to aeronautics research to address aviation safety, air traffic control, noise and emissions reduction, and fuel efficiency. And NASA's diverse portfolio of science, technology, engineering and mathematics educational activities is aligned with the administration's goal of improving American innovation and global competitiveness.
In conjunction with the budget release, the White House also announced the launch of an independent review of NASA's human spaceflight activities. The Review of United States Human Space Flight Plans will examine NASA development programs and possible alternatives. The goal is to provide options that will ensure the nation's human spaceflight program remains safe, innovative and affordable in the years following the space shuttle's retirement.
The review team will work closely with NASA and seek input from the Congress, the White House, the public, industry and international partners as it develops these options. The panel's results will support an administration decision by August 2009 on how to proceed. Acting NASA Administrator Christopher Scolese expressed his support for the effort.
"The thousands of workers who have given so much over the years to bring human spaceflight to where it is today deserve nothing less than a full assurance their commitment will be applied in the smartest and most practical ways," Scolese said.
A blue-ribbon panel of experts will conduct the review, led by Norman Augustine, a former aerospace industry executive who served on the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology and is a recipient of the National Medal of Technology, the Joint Chiefs of Staff Distinguished Public Service Award and the Department of Defense's Distinguished Service Medal. Augustine also has served as chairman of the American Red Cross and the National Academy of Engineering, and was president of the Boy Scouts of America. Michael Hawes, the associate administrator of NASA's Office of Program Analysis and Evaluation in Washington, will serve as the lead of the NASA team supporting the review.
"It is an honor to be asked to lead this important human spaceflight review, and I am excited about working with my fellow panel members to examine these difficult and complex questions," Augustine said. "I am a real believer in the value of this nation's human spaceflight activities and will do everything I can to provide the information needed to help the country maintain the spectacular arc of progress NASA has fueled for five decades."
Work will continue on NASA's missions of exploration and research while the review is underway.
"With this budget," Scolese said, "NASA is able to support a balanced portfolio of priorities in space exploration, Earth and space science, and aeronautics research."
The NASA budget and supporting information are available online at:
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