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Bush Signs New NASA Authorization Act: One More Shuttle, Faster Orion (News) October 17, 2008

Posted by Nick Azer in Bush, Current News, NASA, Obama, Orion (craft), Soyuz, Space Shuttle.
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Today, President Bush signed into law a new NASA Authorization Act with some interesting folds in regards to NASA’s development, especially in regards to the Space Shuttle program.

The act authorizes $20.2 billion for NASA, including funding for an additional space shuttle flight , originally planned for retirement in 2010.

The gap between the shuttle’s retirement and the first flights of the Orion craft in 2014-2015 has created some concern, with the Russian Soyuz being the main stopgap option; recently, a measure was passed in Congress to allow NASA to purchase Soyuz craft (instead of having to piggyback); an interesting side note is that the Soyuz purchase waiver was something that Barack Obama discussed and then became involved with, with his running mate Joe Biden being the sponsor of the waiver. NASA’s future is clearly attracting some high-profile attention lately.

The new authorization act also calls for $1 billion in additional funding to accelerate the Orion program.

For the full text of the act, check out the always dependable SpaceRef.com’s posting of it here.

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