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Griffin to Testify on Status of NASA programs

Press Release From: House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
Posted: Wednesday, November 2, 2005

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House Science Committee: Status of NASA's Programs - Hearing Charter

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Honorable Michael Griffin, Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), will testify before the House Science Committee tomorrow on the status of NASA's plans and programs.

When Administrator Griffin last testified before the Committee four months ago, on June 28th, he described several reviews he had recently initiated, including:

  • The Exploration Systems Architecture Study (ESAS) to define NASA's plans for returning to the Moon;
  • The Shuttle/Station Configuration Options Team (S/SCOT) to examine the range of options for completing the Space Station and retiring the Space Shuttle by 2010;
  • A review of the goals and plans for Project Prometheus, NASA's nuclear power and propulsion program; and
  • Plans for managing the recent $1 billion cost overrun on the James Webb Space Telescope. 

  Since that hearing, NASA has made significant progress in completing these activities.  NASA has completed and released the results of the ESAS study, it has released preliminary results of the S/SCOT study, it has decided to significantly scale back Prometheus to a technology research program, and it has decided to slip the schedule for launch of the Webb telescope by two years.  As a result of these decisions, NASA has begun reprogramming fiscal year 2005 funds and modifying its request for fiscal year 2006 appropriations.

The Committee plans to explore the following overarching questions at the hearing:

  • How can NASA afford to maintain a balanced portfolio of science and aeronautics programs, while also completing the International Space Station and accelerating the human exploration programs, especially given the agency's projected funding shortfalls?
  • What is the status of NASA's plans to define the final configuration of and research agenda for the International Space Station?  What is the status of NASA's plans for returning the Space Shuttle to flight and for retiring it at the end of the decade? 
  • What is the guiding philosophy NASA intends to use in developing new priorities for its aeronautics research program?
  • How does NASA intend to ensure the agency has the appropriate size and skill mix in its workforce, as well as the facilities and infrastructure necessary to support the agency's goals?

  Thursday, November 3, 2005
Full Science Committee - Hearing
Status of NASA's Programs
10:00a.m - 12:00p.m.
2318 Rayburn House Office Building (WEBCAST)

Witness List:

  • The Honorable Michael Griffin, NASA Administrator  

  The hearing charter, which provides background information on the hearing, is attached to this advisory.  For more information, please contact the Science Committee press office at 202-225-4275.

  All Full Committee and subcommittee hearings and markups are webcast live on the Committee website: www.house.gov/science.  The website also includes an archive of webcasts from previous hearings. For Immediate Release

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