National Space Council Users’ Advisory Group, November 2018

National Space Council Users’ Advisory Group, November 2018

The National Space Council’s Users’ Advisory Group (UAG) held its second meeting on November 15, 2018 at NASA HQ in Washington, DC.  Chaired by Adm. Jim Ellis (Ret.), the UAG provides outside advice to the Space Council, which is chaired by Vice President Mike Pence.

The meeting covered a number of topics, one of which was NASA’s plans to return humans to the Moon.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of that discussion on November 15:  NASA’s Moon Plan Panned by Space Council Advisers.

National Space Council Meeting, October 2018

National Space Council Meeting, October 2018

The White House National Space Council held its fourth public meeting at Ft. McNair, Washington, DC on October 23, 2018.  The main focus was President Trump’s proposal to establish a new military department, the Department of the Space Force, but other topics also were discussed.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published two articles summarizing the meeting.

 

On October 31, the Space Council released the texts of the statements by the three witnesses at the meeting:

Space Force: VP Pence At Washington Post Live Event and Fourth National Space Council Meeting, October 2018

Space Force: VP Pence At Washington Post Live Event and Fourth National Space Council Meeting, October 2018

President Trump’s proposal to create a sixth military department, a Space Force, was the topic of back-to-back meetings on October 23, 2018.

Vice President Mike Pence first was interviewed by Washington Post political reporter Robert Costa at a Washington Post Live event, and then chaired the fourth public meeting of the White House National Space Council at Ft. McNair in Washington, D.C.  The Space Force was the primary topic of the Space Council meeting, which unanimously approved six recommendations offered by Deputy Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the two meetings on October 23:  DOD “Moving Out” on Space Force as Space Council Approves Six Recommendations to President.

Reps. Mike Rogers and Jim Cooper Speak at Aspen Institute on Space Force, September 2018

Reps. Mike Rogers and Jim Cooper Speak at Aspen Institute on Space Force, September 2018

Reps. Mike Rogers (R-AL) and Jim Cooper (D-TN) spoke at the Aspen Institute in Washington, DC on September 27, 2018 on “Making the Space Force a Reality.” The two are the chair and ranking member, respectively, of the Strategic Forces Subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) and have been trying to create a Space Corps within the Air Force analogous to the Marine Corps within the Department of the Navy.  President Trump, however, wants an entirely new military department, a Department of the Space Force.

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of their remarks on September 27: Rogers, Cooper Reject Golf Plating of Space Corps.

CSIS SEMINAR ON SECURING SPACE: THE U.S. SPACE FORCE, September 2018

CSIS SEMINAR ON SECURING SPACE: THE U.S. SPACE FORCE, September 2018

On September 10, 2018, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) held a seminar to discuss President Trump’s proposal to create a sixth military department, a Department of the Space Force. Panelists were:

  • John Hamre, President and CEO, CSIS, and former DOD Comptroller (moderator)
  • Robert Work, former Deputy Secretary of Defense
  • Letitia Long, former Director, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA)
  • Gen. Robert Kehler (Ret.), former Commander, U.S. Strategic Command
  • Sean O’Keefe, former DOD Comptroller, former Secretary of the Navy, former NASA Administrator

SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary on September 10:  Space Force Skeptics Laud Unified Space Command

 

NASA ADVISORY COUNCIL MEETINGS, August 2018

NASA ADVISORY COUNCIL MEETINGS, August 2018

The NASA Advisory Council (NAC) and its committees met at NASA Ames Research Center during the last week of August 2018.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published summaries of the meetings of the Human Exploration and Operations (HEO) Committee on August 27, a joint meeting of the HEO and Science committees on August 28, and of the full NAC on August 29-30.  The following is a list of those articles.

CSIS/SWF SEMINAR ON COUNTERSPACE THREATS, June 2018

CSIS/SWF SEMINAR ON COUNTERSPACE THREATS, June 2018

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the Secure World Foundation (SWF) held a joint event on June 5, 2018 to discuss recent separate assessments they made of global counterspace threats.  SWF’s Global Counterspace Capabilities: An Open Source Assessment was published on April 11.  CSIS issued its Space Threat Assessment 2018 a week later.

SpacePolicyOnline.com live tweeted the event and published a selection of the tweets in a “Today’s Tidbits” column on June 5.

Rep. John Culberson and NASA’s Thomas Zurbuchen at STA Luncheon, June 2018

Rep. John Culberson and NASA’s Thomas Zurbuchen at STA Luncheon, June 2018

On June 8, 2018, Rep. John Culberson and NASA’s Thomas Zurbuchen spoke at a Space Transportation Association (STA) luncheon.  Culberson chairs the Commerce-Justice-Science (CJS) subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, which funds NASA.  Zurbuchen is NASA’s Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate.

Culberson spoke about his passion — finding life elsewhere in the universe and sending a probe to an exoplanet where life might exist.  In that context, he talked about the two missions to Jupiter’s moon Europa that he has enacted into law that NASA must execute in the 2020s, the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST), and other aspects of his 51-year plan for NASA.  Zurbuchen spoke about the recently released findings from the Mars Curiosity rover that found organic molecules in ancient Martian rocks and seasonable variations in methane concentrations in the atmosphere.  He also discussed NASA’s plans for lunar lander and rovers.

SpacePolicyOnline.com summarized the discussion on June 10, 2018.

Jim Bridenstine Sworn In as NASA Administrator, April 2018

Jim Bridenstine Sworn In as NASA Administrator, April 2018

Former Congressman Jim Bridenstine of Oklahoma became the 13th Administrator of NASA on April 23, 2018.  The oath of office was administered by Vice President Mike Pence at NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C.  Pence is also chairman of the White House National Space Council.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the ceremony, which included a live Q&A session with three NASA astronauts aboard the International Space Station and a post-ceremony meeting with senior NASA officials, on April 23.

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