Pence to Space Council: Some New Moon Mission Challenges Have Been Met

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Pence to Space Council: Some New Moon Mission Challenges Have Been Met

The U.S. is developing a new rocket, and a new capsule to get us to the moon and Mars.

WASHINGTON, D.C.--America is going back to the moon, says Vice Pres. Mike Pence. And once we get there we may stay for months. Pence talked about the challenges that have been met and the ones that lay ahead for the Artemis moon mission, when he spoke to the National Space Council, at their sixth meeting at the National Air and Space Museum Tuesday, in Washington, D.C.

"Our security, our prosperity and our very way of life depend on American leadership and American leadership in space," said Pence. He updated the council on several pieces of technology that have been developed and completed or are near completion.

The SLS, or the space launch system, is due to be complete by the end of the year. That's the new rocket, the most powerful ever, that will launch the Orion capsule into space.

"Last month we marked the capsule complete on the Orion capsule," said Pence. The Orion is the capsule that will be launched into deep space.

Pence said the Marshal Space Center in Huntsville, Ala., will lead the way in the development of the new lunar lander. But, the lander will be a means to get there for a mission that could last months or even years.

"In order for us to take the next big leap towards the Martian surface, you all here know we have to demonstrate we can live on the moon for months or even years."

That means the astronauts who go on the mission will have to mine ice for water at the moon's south pole. 

To accomplish all of the new objectives, NASA has gotten its biggest budget ever. Congress may approve another $1.6 billion, to cement support for the new mission. 

NASA may also work in some way, with the private agencies that are launching missions into space.

PHOTO: VP Mike Pence on Twitter

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