House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on Moon/Mars. November 2019

House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on Moon/Mars. November 2019

The Space Subcommittee of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee held a hearing on November 13, 2019 on “Keeping Our Sights on Mars Part 2: Structuring a Moon-Mars Program for Success.”

Witnesses were Gemini/Apollo astronaut Tom Stafford, who currently chairs NASA’s International Space Station Advisory Committee, and NASA and aerospace industry veteran Tom Young, who chairs many independent reviews of military and civil space programs that go awry.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on November 13, 2019.

House Appropriations CJS Subcommittee Hearing on Artemis Program, October 2019

House Appropriations CJS Subcommittee Hearing on Artemis Program, October 2019

The Commerce-Justice-Science (CJS) subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee held a hearing on October 16, 2019 on “NASA’s Proposal to Advance the Next Moon Landing by Four Years.”  That plan, announced by Vice President Pence on March 26, 2019, is now called the Artemis program.

Witnesses were NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and NASA Acting Associate Associate Administrator for Human Exploration and Operations Ken Bowersox.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on October 16: Serrano Worried About Who Will Pay for Accelerating the Moon Program.

House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on Deep Space Human Exploration, September 2019

House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on Deep Space Human Exploration, September 2019

The Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee held a hearing on September 18, 2019 on “Developing Core Capabilities for Deep Space Exploration: An Update on NASA’s SLS, Orion, and Exploration Ground Systems.”  Most of the hearing focused on SLS/Orion/EGS in the context of the Artemis program to return astronauts to Moon’s surface by 2024 although other human space exploration issues were discussed as well.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on September 18:  Skepticism Abounds on Moon-by-2024 Goal at House Hearing. 

Witnesses were:

  • Ken Bowersox, Acting Associate Administrator, Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate, NASA
  • Cristina Chaplain, Director, Contracting and National Security ACquisitions, Government Accountability Office (GAO)
  • Doug Cooke, Cooke Concepts and Solutions, Former NASA Associate Administrator, Exploration Systems
SASC Hearing on Barbara Barrett’s Nomination to be Secretary of the Air Force, September 2019

SASC Hearing on Barbara Barrett’s Nomination to be Secretary of the Air Force, September 2019

The Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) held a hearing on September 12, 2019 to consider the nomination of Barbara Barrett to be Secretary of the Air Force.  Most of the hearing dealt with non-space issues, but Barrett was asked about the Space Force, space launch, and international rules of the road for space.

SpacePolicyOnline.com summarized the space-related aspects of the hearing on September 12:  Barrett Endorses Space Force as Senate Appropriators Approve Funding.

House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on Commercial Space Activities, July 2019

House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on Commercial Space Activities, July 2019

The Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee held a hearing on “The Commercial Space Landscape” on July 25, 2019.  Subcommittee chair Kendra Horn (D-OK) described it as “commercial space 101” to help the subcommittee prioritize what topics it should focus on in future hearings.  Witnesses were:

  • Dr. Bhavya Lal, Research Staff Member, IDA Science and Technology Policy Institute
  • Ms. Carissa Christensen, Chief Executive Officer, Bryce Space and Technology
  • Mr. Eric W. Stallmer, President, Commercial Spaceflight Federation
  • Mr. Mike French, Vice President, Space Systems, Aerospace Industries Association
  • Laura Montgomery, Proprietor, Ground Based Space Matters, Professor, Catholic University’s Columbus School of Law (added July 23)

Stallmer strongly criticized new proposed regulations from the FAA for the commercial space launch business.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing focusing on Stallmer’s remarks on July 25, 2019: CSF’s Stallmer Slams FAA’s Proposed Commercial Space Regulations.

House Appropriations CJS Hearing on OSTP with Comments about Artemis, July 2019

House Appropriations CJS Hearing on OSTP with Comments about Artemis, July 2019

The House Appropriations Commerce-Justice-Science subcommittee held an oversight hearing for the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) on July 24, 2019.  OSTP Director Kelvin Droegemeier was the only witness.  During the hearing, subcommittee chairman José Serrano (D-NY) discussed NASA’s Artemis program to return astronauts to the Moon by 2024.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published an article about that aspect of the hearing on July 24:  Serrano Supports Astronauts on the Moon, but Not By 2024.

Senate Commerce Committee Hearing on NASA’s Moon to Mars Plans, July 2017

Senate Commerce Committee Hearing on NASA’s Moon to Mars Plans, July 2017

The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee held a hearing on July 17, 2019 — during celebrations of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing on the Moon — on “Moon to Mars:  NASA’s Deep Space Exploration Plans.”  Despite the title, the hearing was focused almost entirely on the Trump Administration’s plan to return astronauts to the surface of the Moon by 2024, the Artemis program.

The only witness was NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on July 17, 2019: Senators Press NASA on Green Run Test, Artemis Cost Estimate.

Senate Commerce Subcommittee Hearing re Apollo 11 Anniversary and NASA’s Future Exploration Plans, July 2019

Senate Commerce Subcommittee Hearing re Apollo 11 Anniversary and NASA’s Future Exploration Plans, July 2019

The Aviation and Space Subcommittee of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee held a hearing on July 9, 2019 on “NASA’s Exploration Plans:  Where We Have Been and Where We Are Going.”  The hearing was held a week before the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing on the Moon.  Three icons from the Apollo era were among the witnesses:  Gene Kranz, Apollo 11 and 13 flight director; Homer Hickam, former NASA engineer and author of the Rocket Boys; and Christine Darden, former NASA mathematician and aerospace engineer who was highlighted in the book and movie Hidden Figures.  The hearing also looked out to the next 50 years.  Joining them at the witness table were the presidents of two industry associations:  Mary Lynne Dittmar of the Coalition for Deep Space Exploration and Eric Stallmer of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on July 9, 2019: “Senate Committee Working on New, Bold NASA Authorization Bill.”

House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on NASA’s Science Portfolio, June 2019

House SS&T Subcommittee Hearing on NASA’s Science Portfolio, June 2019

The Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee held a hearing on June 11, 2019 on “Discovery on the Frontiers of Space: Exploring NASA’s Science Mission.”  Witnesses were:

  • Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA Associate Administrator for Science Mission Directorate
  • Chelle Gentemann, Senior Scientist, Earth & Space Research, and co-chair of the National Academies’ Committee on Earth Science and Applications from Space
  • David Spergel, Charles Young Professor of Astronomy, Princeton University; Director, Center for Computational Astrophysics, Flatiron Institute; and past chair of the National Academies’ Space Studies Board
  • Mark Sykes, CEO and Director, Planetary Science Institute

SpacePolicyOnline.com published two articles summarizing different aspects of the hearing on June 11, 2019:

SASC Confirmation Hearing for Scolese (NRO) and Raymond (USSPACECOM)

SASC Confirmation Hearing for Scolese (NRO) and Raymond (USSPACECOM)

On June 4, 2019, the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) held a nomination hearing for Chris Scolese to be Director of the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) and Gen. John “Jay” Raymond to be Commander of U.S. Space Command (USSPACECOM) and continue as Commander of Air Force Space Command (AFSC).

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on June 4:  Scolese, Raymond Breeze Through SASC Confirmation Hearing.