Buzz Aldrin Proposes Focus on Mars not Moon in a "Unified Space Vision"

Buzz Aldrin Proposes Focus on Mars not Moon in a "Unified Space Vision"

In an op-ed piece in the Washington Post today, the 40th anniversary of the launch of Apollo 11, famed Apollo 11 astronaut and moonwalker Buzz Aldrin outlined his own plan for the future of U.S. human space flight — a Unified Space Vision. He predicted that President Bush’s 2004 Vision for Space Exploration, like Apollo, would be “a dead end littered with broken spacecraft, broken dreams and broken policies.”

Instead, he called for a focus on sending astronauts to Mars. He did not reject a human return to the Moon, but argued that this could be a focus for other countries.

“As the moon should be for all mankind, we should return there as part of an internationally led coalition. Using the landers and heavy-lift boosters developed by our partners, we could test on the moon the tools and equipment that we will need for our ultimate destination: homesteading Mars by way of its moons.”

“As we all reflect upon our historic lunar journey and the future of the space program, I challenge America’s leaders to think boldly and look beyond the moon. Yes, my vision of “Mars for America” requires bold thinking. But as my friend and Gemini crewmate Jim Lovell has noted, our Apollo days were a time when we did bold things in space to achieve leadership. It is time we were bold again in space.”

User Comments has the right (but not the obligation) to monitor the comments and to remove any materials it deems inappropriate.  We do not post comments that include links to other websites since we have no control over that content nor can we verify the security of such links.