Vice President Pence, chairman of the National Space Council, this week directed an acceleration of work to return U.S. astronauts to the Moon. In the process, he confirmed that a super-rocket Boeing is developing will remain the centerpiece of NASA’s human spaceflight program. Called the Space Launch System, it will be the biggest rocket ever built, and its first big mission is to carry Americans back to the Moon. An evolved version will later go to Mars. But Pence made clear that Boeing’s role, and that of every other contractor on the program, depends on speeding up their efforts. He wants Americans back on the lunar surface by 2024, before China launches its own astronaut mission. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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