Senate Commerce Committee Hearing on NASA, September 2020

Senate Commerce Committee Hearing on NASA, September 2020

The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee held a hearing on NASA on September 30, 2020.  The hearing was about a variety of NASA programs, not specifically its FY2021 budget request that is still awaiting action in the Senate.  A major topic was the Artemis program to return astronauts to the Moon by 2024.  NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine was the only witness.

SpacePolicyOnline.com summarized the hearing on September 30: Another Senate Hearing, But Still No Clue on Likely Fate of Artemis Funding

Senate Appropriations CJS Subcommittee Hearing on NASA’s FY2021 Budget Request, September 2020

Senate Appropriations CJS Subcommittee Hearing on NASA’s FY2021 Budget Request, September 2020

The Commerce-Justice-Science (CJS) Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee held a hearing on NASA’s FY2021 budget request on September 23, 2020.  The hearing was delayed for months because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  (The House Appropriations Committee did not hold a NASA budget hearing this year for the same reason.)

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine was the only witness.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published two articles summarizing the hearing:

SASC Hearing on FCC’s Approval of Ligado and Impact on GPS, May 2020

SASC Hearing on FCC’s Approval of Ligado and Impact on GPS, May 2020

The Senate Armed Services Committee held a hearing on May 6, 2020 to discuss the impact on the GPS system of the FCC’s approval of an application by Ligado for a 5G system that will use spectrum close to that utilized by GPS.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on May 6: DOD Wants FCC To Reverse Ligado Decision.

Witnesses were:

  • Dana Deasy, DOD Chief Information Officer (CIO)
  • Mike Griffin, Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (USD/R&E)
  • Gen. John (Jay) Raymond, Chief of Space Operations, and Commander, U.S. Space Command
  • Adm. Thad Allen (Ret.), chair, National Space-Based Postioning, Navigation and Timing (PNT) Advisory Board
House and Senate Hearings on Space Situational Awareness, February 2020

House and Senate Hearings on Space Situational Awareness, February 2020

The House Science, Space, and Technology’s Space Subcommittee held a hearing on space situational awareness (SSA) on February 11, 2020.  The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation committee held a hearing the next day, February 12, on three topics, one of which was SSA (the others were space weather and planetary defense).

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the House hearing and the SSA-related portions of the Senate hearing on February 12:  Office of Space Commerce Seeks Budget Boost to Accelerate SSA Work.

 

 

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.