Feeds

NASA plans week-long lunar trip

Wish you were here?

Intelligent flash storage arrays

NASA is preparing to lay out its plans for returning to the moon and plans to send a four-person mission back to our largest satellite in 2018. The astronauts will stay on the lunar surface for a week.

NASA briefed Congress on its plans last Friday, according to the BBC. The agency told elected officials that developing the spacecraft and associated technologies for the mission would cost in the region of $100bn.

The 2018 mission would happen in several stages. First, NASA will have to put a lunar landing module, and a propulsion stage, into orbit around Earth. Next, Shuttle's replacement, the so-called Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV), and a new launcher would dock with the landing module before heading for the moon.

The agency also proposes building a rudimentary lunar base from which astronauts could begin to exploit lunar resources by mining for water and fuel.

Getting a $100bn project signed off in the current political climate could prove a tough task, however. The US government is already heavily committed to the war in Iraq, and also, post-Katrina, to vast restoration efforts along the Gulf Coast.

Representative Bart Gordon, a Tennessee Democrat on the US House Science Committee, issued a statement saying that "strong presidential leadership will be needed" if there is to be agreement on the mission.

If NASA gets the green light, it will be the first manned mission to the moon since 1972. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
You can crunch it all you like, but the answer is NOT always in the data
Hear that, 'data journalists'? Our analytics prof holds forth
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft
674 days in space for US Air Force's mystery orbital vehicle
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.