CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — It's a big day for NASA and Florida’s Space Coast after President Donald Trump unveiled a proposed $25 billion budget for the agency.
Officials hope the money will get us closer to a historic milestone in space exploration.
The president's 2021 NASA budget request would provide a big boost to the agency as it prepares to return to the moon on its way to Mars.
This is a pivotal year for NASA as it develops the hardware needed to return to the moon.
The agency also plans to launch U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station from U.S. soil for the first time in nearly a decade.
A large portion of the budget would be used to support the agency's moon to Mars initiative.
“This is a 21st century budget worthy of 21st century exploration and one of our strongest budget's in NASA's history,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.
The president's 2021 budget supports critical elements of the Artemis architecture, including $3 billion for the development of lunar human landing system.
NASA is also partnering with the commercial industry to reach its goal of a 2024 moon landing.
“We have the SLS rocket, we have the Orion, what we are missing is the human lander to land on the moon so, this is a really good increase,” said Ken Kremer with Space UpClose.
This budget proposal fully funds the SLS rocket and NASA's Orion crew capsule. It also provides money to develop the Gateway, lunar station, to support future missions.
Next year, NASA will be putting payloads on the lunar surface for the first time since 1972. The proposed budget also earmarks $4 billion for low-Earth orbit and spaceflight operations.
This budget also includes $415 million to launch the James Webb space telescope next year.
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