Watch out, Mars! Earthlings are planning to put their boots on you by 2040 and maybe we have the funding to actually do that for a change. Just, please, no demonic gates to hell.
NASA’s recent State speech revealed its plan to take real humans back to the stars and explore space. This is being supported by a White House budget request of $26 billion in 2023 to help fund various exploration programs.
“Our goal is to apply what we’ve learned living and operating on the Moon and continue in the solar system. Our plan is for humans to walk on Mars by 2040,” Agency Administrator Bill Nelson said during the presentation.
The first step is to work towards the Artemis lunar missions, which NASA says will see the first woman and person of color on the moon. From there the plan is to build an Artemis Base Camp to help with further exploration and research on the moon’s surface, as well as an orbiting Gateway spacecraft.
In 2024, we should see a crew of astronauts back in orbit and then another moon landing in 2026 to continue their research. From there, NASA detailed plans until around 2027, where further landings are planned as part of the Artemis lunar missions in the coming years. All of this will likely be done with other partners like SpaceX, and what we learn there will help with NASA’s goals of getting people to Mars over the next two decades.
The budget will also go to areas that are not always thought of immediately when it comes to space exploration. While about $822 million is planned to return soil samples from Mars and $480 million is dedicated to robotic exploration of the moon, $500 million is planned to help develop more environmentally sustainable aviation strategies. Some are also likely to flinging spaceships into rocksWhy fun is not just for kerbals.
The exploration of Mars is being performed by robots like the Perseverance Rover and the Ingenuity Helicopter. This is giving scientists here on Earth a chance to do as much research as possible before we put our aliens on another planet. For now, tidy up your space by checking out what the Hubble Telescope was looking on your birthday.