First person on Mars 'likely to be a woman'

Rodiano Bonacci
Marzo 13, 2019

The space agency says that $8 million has been awarded to these selected teams, which include four NASA research centers, the universities of Arizona, Cal-Berkeley and New Mexico, and the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory and Mount Holyoke College/Planetary Science Institute.

Bridenstine responded "absolutely" to a question from a Twitter user who asked whether women will be included in the agency's next trip to the moon.

Looking forward, NASA and other scientific groups have discussed the potential of using the moon as a sort of jumping-off point for missions deeper into space.

NASA will also have its first all-female spacewalk at the end of the month, when astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch will get to float around in space. So NASA is committed to making sure that we have a broad and diverse set of talent.

In fact, he said the next person on the moon is also likely to be a woman.

NASA announced last week that it's planning for the first all-female spacewalk later this month, which is coincidentally Women's History Month.

Lead flight director Mary Lawrence will oversee the station crew from Mission Control and Jackie Kagey will serve as lead spacewalk officer. Today, women make up 34% of active NASA astronauts, and while that's still well short of half, it's a lot closer than it has been in the past.

The space agency has come a long way since the 1970s when just six women were in the astronaut corps.

A new $21 billion 2020 budget marks almost a six per cent increase from last year's.

"By studying these precious lunar samples for the first time, a new generation of scientists will help advance our understanding of our lunar neighbor and prepare for the next era of exploration of the Moon and beyond", Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA's associate administrator for its Science Mission Directorate, said in a news release.

'This time, when we go to the Moon, we will stay.

Forget everything you've learned about men and Mars.

The plan, which has been in development over the last few years, relies on the developing Space Launch System and Orion spacecraft, along with the Gateway orbital platform.

Construction on Gateway - an orbiting lunar outpost - is expected to begin construction as soon as 2022.

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