Published: Thu, March 14, 2019
Science | By Michele Flores

Nasa May Pick All-Women Team to be First on Mars

Nasa May Pick All-Women Team to be First on Mars

Nasa administrator Jim Bridenstine said, "the first person on Mars is likely to be a woman", during an interview with Science Friday.

Additional delays with a Boeing rocket has NASA considering commercial help to mitigate further schedule slips in launching the agency's future deep-space exploration craft.

The Trump administration's ultimate goal, he said, is a mission to Mars.

"It's likely to be a woman, the first next person on the Moon". Bridenstine even said NASA could launch that effort this year if things go well.

"We are talking about a rocket that is bigger than any rocket that has been built in human history with a payload capable of carrying volumes that we've never seen before, taller than the Statue of Liberty", he said.

He added: "We are going to the moon with innovative new technologies and systems to explore more locations across the surface than we ever thought possible. We have fantastic capability that exists right now that we can use off the shelf" to accomplish EM-1, while it would "not change the direction of the SLS and EM-2".

That's where the Space Launch System, or SLS, comes in. The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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As for testing SLS, it already is scheduled for a full-up "Green Run" test at Stennis.

A new $21 billion 2020 budget marks almost a six per cent increase from last year's.

After the hearing, Bridenstine told the industry publication Space News that he hadn't spoken with ULA or Elon Musk's SpaceX about using their heavy-lift vehicles for the EM-1 mission.

United States space agency NASA has selected nine teams to study the moon samples collected during the Apollo missions in the 1970s, Trend reports citing Xinhua.

The two most capable "off the shelf" rockets in the USA fleet right now are ULA's Delta IV and SpaceX's Falcon Heavy. "And we are looking forward to the first woman on the moon", he said.

Scientists are continuously monitoring the moon using the data from Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter which is orbiting around the moon. Orion would have to dock with the upper stage in orbit around Earth, before heading to the moon. The Orion spacecraft would dock with it, and the propulsion module would shoot Orion to the moon. "Lunar water can potentially be used by humans to make fuel or to use for radiation shielding or thermal management; if these materials do not need to be launched from Earth, that makes these future missions more affordable". "So, between now and 2020, we would have to make that a reality".

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