Capitol Hill Policy Update for December 8th through December 21st, 2014

Capitol Hill Policy Update for December 8th through December 21st, 2014

January 10, 2015 Space Policy News


(Left) Congressman John Culberson (R-TX) and

 (Right) Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA)

Culberson and Schiff Push For Bipartisan Planetary Exploration

Representatives John Culberson (R-TX) and Adam Schiff (D-CA) have been champions for NASA’s planetary science funding. Typically being a consideration for cuts in previous fiscal years, planetary science has seen significant increases in allocations. In recent times before cuts, planetary science funding has hovered around $1.5 billion and current efforts through the 2015 FY omnibus have reinstated an operational budget of $1.44 billion.

Space News

Asteroid Redirect Mission Future Unclear

Original intentions of robotic asteroid redirect missions (ARM) indicated goals of moving an entire asteroid into lunar orbit. However, this mission may be amended to only have a smaller chunk of the asteroid transported. NASA Associate Administrator Robert Lightfoot postponed the official decision until sometime in January.


Space Debris Still an Issue, Lacking Concrete Support From Countries

International efforts on space debris mitigation have been focused on a drafted EU code of conduct. The policy would set certain guidelines and regulations for space operations resulting in potential debris. Language is currently vague and large space faring countries such as China, India, and Russia have still not claimed to be official stakeholders in the proposed code.

Space News

Pork Barrel Trophy Standing Tall, Proud, and Unused

NASA’s $349 million A3 test stand at Stennis Space Center in Mississippi was featured in a Washington Post article revealing how bureaucratic and governmental influences can serve interests back home rather than America as a whole for space exploration. The test stand was completed 3 years after the cancellation of the J2-X engine, which was the purpose for the stand’s initial construction. $700K per year will be required to maintain the test facility for future use.

 Space News


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Newsletter Editors:

Joshua Jenkins

Andrew Newman

Calvin Baker


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