Moon-to-Mars Plans Emerge: New Agenda or Apollo Retread?

NASA is set to unveil today details of its new space architecture, a “how-to” response to President George W. Bush’s Moon, Mars and beyond vision speech made in January 2004. Bush called for putting astronauts back on the Moon by 2020 and sending humans to Mars thereafter. Last week and Space News reported that NASA will announce today plans to send four astronauts to Moon in 2018. On the list: A re-usable vehicle that’s safer than the shuttle; technology for extracting fuel from the destination; and an airbag landing upon return to Earth. Plans were also detailed for sending robotic scouts first.