Friday, August 21, 2009

NASA assembles new rocket for the ambitious U.S. manned space program

NASA has completed the assembly of its Ares I-X rocket, the first new launch system dedicated to manned spaceflight in a quarter of a century. An important step in the ambitious U.S. manned space program, the Ares I-X is the first version of a series of rockets set to carry the U.S. space agency's next-generation Orion spacecraft after the space shuttle fleet is retired in 2010. The Orion-Ares combination is not due to launch until 2015 at the earliest.

CBC reports:
A report from the U.S. Human Space Flight Plans committee said federal budget cuts have made impossible the agency's current plans to land astronauts on the moon by 2020. The committee said the project's 10-year, $108 billion US budget has been shaved by $30 billion in the most recent federal budget, putting the moon mission plans in jeopardy. READ MORE