The vice president of the United States, Mike Pence, ratified yesterday the commitment of the Administration of the president, Donald Trump, to return to the Moon in the next five years, and predicted that the first woman and the next man to step on the Earth's satellite will be Americans.
"As President Donald Trump has made clear: the policy of this Administration is for the United States to send American astronauts back to the Moon within the next five years," Pence said in a speech at the national meeting of the Space Council. And he predicted: "The first woman and the next man on the Moon, both will be American astronauts, launched by American rockets, from American soil."
Speaking at the Space Council's national meeting, which was held at the Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama, Pence considered the return of American astronauts to the Moon as the "next giant leap" of the spacecraft. country. Similarly, he stressed that the United States plans to "develop technology to go to Mars and worlds beyond."
The vice president highlighted the presence at the meeting of astronaut Edwin Buzz Aldrin, the pilot of the lunar module of Apollo 11, the first mission that put a man on the Moon and that this 2019 celebrates its 50th anniversary.
During that mission, which departed from Earth on July 16, 1969 and landed four days later on the Moon, Aldrin and Neil Armstrong, both American astronauts, managed to walk on the lunar surface. Also part of that crew was Michael Collins, who was pilot of the command module.
In response to the vice president, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine wrote on Twitter: "Challenge accepted." "We will go to the moon with new technologies and innovative systems to explore more locations on the surface than was ever thought possible," Bridenstine said in a statement posted on NASA's website, in which he indicated that Trump has ordered the return to satellite before 2024.
In that statement, call Explore Moon to Mars (Exploring the Moon to Mars), Bridenstine said that this time the US "will stay on the Moon." "And then we will use what we learn on the Moon to take the next big leap: send astronauts to Mars," he added.
In 2011, NASA put an end to the flights of its space shuttles and, since then, it depends on Russia to take its astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS). Trump asked in April 2017, three months after taking office, that NASA accelerate "a little" their plans for space exploration, whose goal is to send humans to Mars in the 2030s, for an American to step on the red planet during his first term or, "in the worst case", in an eventual second