SpaceX Confident Commercial Crew Flights in One Year

SpaceX Confident Commercial Crew Flights in One Year

A SpaceX official expressed optimism today that the company’s commercial crew system will be ready to take astronauts into space by this time next year.  NASA’s deputy International Space Station (ISS) program manager was a bit more cautious, estimating “in the FY2019 period.”

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What’s Happening in Space Policy August 13-September 1, 2017

What’s Happening in Space Policy August 13-September 1, 2017

Here is our list of space policy events for the next THREE weeks, August 13-September 1, 2017, and any insight we can offer about them.   The House and Senate are in recess until September 5 (except for pro forma sessions).

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RESTORE-L Passes PDR As Future Remains Cloudy

RESTORE-L Passes PDR As Future Remains Cloudy

NASA’s satellite servicing technology development and demonstration mission, Restore-L, passed a milestone today, successfully clearing Preliminary Design Review (PDR). The Trump Administration wants to downscale the program significantly however, and while the House and Senate Appropriations Committees have rallied to its defense, only one approved the money needed to keep it on course.

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Cardillo Champions Regulatory Reform for Commercial Remote Sensing Satellites

Cardillo Champions Regulatory Reform for Commercial Remote Sensing Satellites

Robert Cardillo, Director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), sounded a clarion call for reforming the way the government regulates commercial remote sensing satellites today.  The intelligence community (IC), of which NGA is part, and DOD are often cited as the culprits in lengthy and unexplained delays for those trying to obtain licenses as required by law.  Cardillo pointed out that with the growing number of entities — including elementary and middle schools — needing licenses, the process must change.

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What’s Happening in Space Policy August 6-13, 2017

What’s Happening in Space Policy August 6-13, 2017

Here is our list of space policy events for the week of August 6-13, 2017 and any insight we can offer about them. The House and Senate are in recess (except for pro-forma sessions) until September 5.

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Senate Heads Out for Recess Without Acting on NDAA

Senate Heads Out for Recess Without Acting on NDAA

The Senate headed out of town for a slightly delayed August recess tonight and will return to work on September 5.  The FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) will have to wait until then to be considered by the Senate.

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Updated Fact Sheets Now Available on SpacePolicyOnline.com

Updated Fact Sheets Now Available on SpacePolicyOnline.com

Editor’s Note:   We have updated our fact sheets on NASA’s budget request, NOAA’s budget request, and the 115th Congress Legislative Checklist. Those and other SpacePolicyOnline.com fact sheets are available from our top menu under Reports|SpacePolicyOnline.com|Fact Sheets.

Trump Signs Sanctions Bill

Trump Signs Sanctions Bill

President Trump today signed into law a bill that imposes additional sanctions on Russia.  The final version of the bill exempts NASA’s activities with Russia and space launches conducted for NASA or the commercial sector.

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NOAA’s Polar Follow On Gets Reprieve from Senate Appropriators

NOAA’s Polar Follow On Gets Reprieve from Senate Appropriators

NOAA’s Polar Follow On (PFO) program finally got some good news.  The Senate Appropriations Committee approved $419 million for PFO in its markup of the FY2018 Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill last week.  The Trump Administration wants to “re-plan” the program, which funds the second set of JPSS polar-orbiting weather satellites, JPSS-3 and JPSS-4, and requested $180 million.

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Senate Appropriators Give NASA Mixed News

Senate Appropriators Give NASA Mixed News

The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the FY2018 Commerce-Justice-Science (CJS) appropriations bill on Thursday (July 27).  The news for NASA is mixed.  The committee provided $437 million more than the Trump Administration requested, but $124 million less than current spending. That is in sharp contrast to the House Appropriations Committee, which approved a huge increase both above the request and FY2017.

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