What’s Happening in Space Policy February 12-16, 2018

What’s Happening in Space Policy February 12-16, 2018

Here is our list of space policy events for the week of February 12-16, 2018 and any insight we can offer about them.  The House and Senate are in session for all or part of this week.

During the Week

All that budget drama last week was about the FY2018 budget.  Tomorrow, a new drama begins with President Trump’s submission of his FY2019 budget request to Congress. (Not that we’re done with FY2018 yet, of course.  What was approved last week funds most government agencies only through March 23.  Now that the budget caps have been lifted, however, finalizing FY2018 should be comparatively straightforward.)

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will release the budget request at 11:30 am ET (www.whitehouse.gov/omb).  The OMB information is very top-level. Details are in the requests for each individual department or agency.

NASA’s FY2019 budget request will be posted on the NASA website (www.nasa.gov/budget) at 12:00 pm ET.  At 1:00 pm ET, Acting NASA Administrator Robert Lightfoot will address the NASA workforce from Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville.  At 5:00 pm ET, Acting NASA CFO Andrew Hunter will brief the media via teleconference.  Both will be broadcast on www.nasa.gov/NASALive.  NASA field centers will be holding “State of NASA” events at various times throughout the day.   Information has leaked out about what the budget request will propose for the International Space Station and congressional reaction so far is not positive, so it will be another interesting year.

DOD Comptroller David Norquist and Lt. Gen. Anthony Ierardi, Director, Force Structure, Resources and Assessment, will conduct a briefing on the budget request for DOD at 12:00 pm ET.  Each service will hold its own briefing later in the day.  The Air Force’s will be at 2:30 pm ET.   We don’t know what will be livestreamed, but DOD’s livestream website is www.defense.gov/live/.

We do not have any information about budget briefings that either the Department of Commerce or NOAA plan to conduct.

Women in Aerospace is holding a “Senior Leaders Budget Discussion” on Tuesday morning.  NASA’s Lightfoot is the keynote speaker, followed by a panel with two DOD representatives.  It is at Lockheed Martin’s Global Vision Center in Crystal City (part of Arlington), VA at 8:30 am ET.

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson will talk about Space as a Warfighting Domain on Friday morning at a Mitchell Institute Space Breakfast at the Capitol Hill Club in Washington, DC beginning at 9:30 am ET.

Over in Kazakhstan, Roscosmos may try again to launch Progress MS-08 on Tuesday, although it is still investigating what went wrong this morning.  On the surface, it looks similar to the problem encountered last October with the launch of Progress MS-07 when an umbilical did not detach from the Soyuz 2.1a rocket seconds before launch.  If it is the same problem, launch on Tuesday is probably a good bet.  Progress MS-07 was delayed by only two days.  When they officially announce a new date and time, we will add it to our calendar.

Those and other events we know about as of Sunday afternoon are shown below.  Check back throughout the week for others we learn about later and add to our calendar.

Monday, February 12

Tuesday, February 13

Tuesday-Thursday, February 13-15

Wednesday, February 14

Wednesday-Thursday, February 14-15

Thursday, February 15

Thursday-Saturday, February 15-17

Friday, February 16






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