What’s Happening in Space Policy June 26-July 2, 2022

What’s Happening in Space Policy June 26-July 2, 2022

Here is SpacePolicyOnline.com’s list of space policy events for the week of June 26-July 2, 2022 and any insight we can offer about them. The House will meet only in pro forma sessions this week, but committees will meet Tuesday-Thursday. The Senate is in session this week, but could leave a bit early for the July 4 recess.

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NASA Not Ready to Commit to Artemis I Launch Date, But Getting Close

NASA Not Ready to Commit to Artemis I Launch Date, But Getting Close

NASA formally announced today that the Wet Dress Rehearsal of the Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft for the Artemis I flight test is complete. The stack will be rolled back to the Vehicle Assembly Building next week to get ready for launch. Officials were not willing to commit to a launch date today, but the next window is at the end of August and early September.

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Software Testing Delays Psyche Asteroid Mission At Least Until Next Year

Software Testing Delays Psyche Asteroid Mission At Least Until Next Year

Launch of NASA’s Psyche mission, the first to study an asteroid made mostly of metal, will have to wait at least until next year. The spacecraft is ready, but the project team ran out of time to test the Guidance, Navigation and Control software, critical to ensuring it gets where it needs to go. The software was delivered late, and may be fine, but they need to validate it before committing to launch. Options in 2023 and 2024 are under review.

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NASA Satisfied With Latest Artemis WDR, Fifth Test Not Needed

NASA Satisfied With Latest Artemis WDR, Fifth Test Not Needed

NASA has concluded that Monday’s Wet Dress Rehearsal test of the Artemis I rocket met enough of its objectives that another test is unnecessary. That brings the agency one step closer to setting a launch date for this uncrewed test flight of the Space Launch System and Orion spacecraft around the Moon. More than three years behind schedule and billions over budget, it is a much-anticipated milestone that one day will lead to putting astronauts back on the lunar surface.

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House Appropriators Recommend Boost for NASA in FY2023, But Not as Much as Requested

House Appropriators Recommend Boost for NASA in FY2023, But Not as Much as Requested

The House Appropriations subcommittee that funds NASA is recommending $25.45 billion for the agency in FY2023. While a substantial increase over current funding of $24.04 billion, the total is half a billion less than the $25.97 billion President Biden requested.

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House Appropriators Warn Space Force Budget Not Credible

House Appropriators Warn Space Force Budget Not Credible

The House Appropriations Committee is warning the U.S. Space Force against starting more programs than it can afford. In a draft of its report on the FY2023 defense appropriations bill, which it will mark up tomorrow, the committee criticized the newest military service for submitting a five-year budget projection that is not credible given its “ambitious” plans.

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A “Good Day” for the Artemis I Test, But Was It Enough?

A “Good Day” for the Artemis I Test, But Was It Enough?

Today’s fourth attempt at a critical test of the Artemis I rocket got much further than three tries in April, but still fell short. Launch Director Charlie Blackwell-Thompson called it a “good day” and an “exciting day” for the program and her team, but they need a chance to look at all the data before deciding whether a fifth test is needed.

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What’s Happening in Space Policy June 19-25, 2022

What’s Happening in Space Policy June 19-25, 2022

Here is SpacePolicyOnline.com’s list of space policy events for the week of June 19-25, 2022 and any insight we can offer about them. The House and Senate are in session this week.

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Another Crew Change for Boeing’s Starliner

Another Crew Change for Boeing’s Starliner

NASA has made yet another change in the crew assigned to test-fly Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft. The Crew Flight Test is expected to launch in the next six to nine months. Two instead of three NASA astronauts will be aboard — Butch Wilmore and Suni Williams. Williams had been assigned to command the first operational Starliner fight after the CFT. It’s the latest round of astronaut musical chairs over the past four years of who will be on the first Starliner missions.

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Artemis I Launch Slips to Late August or September At the Earliest

Artemis I Launch Slips to Late August or September At the Earliest

As NASA gets ready to resume a critical test in preparation for Artemis I, the first launch of the Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft, the head of the Artemis effort conceded today that the launch is unlikely before late August or September at the earliest. A variety of factors constrain the launch to a roughly two-week period each month and the July-early August window is slipping away. Meanwhile, the heads of NASA and ESA spoke today in the Netherlands about the prospects for European astronauts landing on the Moon.

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