NASA’s original plan to get astronauts on the moon in 2028 was brought forward to 2024 during the Trump administration, but has now seen a delay to 2025. Reasons for this delay were attributed to safety and feasibility, as well as the litigation with Blue Origin, according to NASA administrator Bill Nelson.
Michael Sheetz of CBNC reported on Tuesday, November 9 that NASA’s moon landing mission has been delayed until 2025. During a call with reporters, NASA administrator Bill Nelson stated, “The Trump administration’s target of 2024 human landing was not grounded in technical feasibility.”
Previously, the agency had targeted 2028 as the year humans would step on the moon again, so bringing a plan like this forward by four years would have been quite the feat. While 2024 is unattainable, it seems as if 2025 is within NASA’s reach.
Part of the reason the delay has taken place is due to Blue Origin’s (Jeff Bezos’ own spacerace company) lawsuit which it filed against NASA. According to Nelson, this lawsuit is responsible for delaying roughly seven months’ worth of work. The lawsuit was regarding Elon Musk’s SpaceX company, which had secured a $2.9 billion dollar contract to build the Human Landing System program.
As of October, 2021, SpaceX’s valuation topped $100 billion following a secondary share offering. The company continues to make great advancements in the aerospace and technology sphere, with its SN10 rocket successfully taking off and landing.
During the conference, Nelson stated that part of the new, aggressive push to get “boots on the moon” is due to China’s own spaceflight advancements. The nation’s space program also includes its military. Though the initial date has been brought forward to 2025 from 2028, and the race is on to beat China to the moon, Nelson hammers home the importance of safety for this mission, stating that NASA will continue its efforts “in a safe and technically feasible way”.
Sam Chandler posted a new article, NASA astronaut moon landing mission delayed to 2025
certainly for the best
I didn't have a problem with the previous administration trying to push the date up. It helps us push ourselves and stretch. The fact that NASA came back and said that 2025 was doable makes it seem like the original 2028 date was just a date out on the horizon to begin with. So, moving it to 2024 was just kind of like saying, let's get serious. And so serious gets us to 2025, but doable.
It wasn't covered here, but I've read other articles about some of the challenges. The whole thing with the space suits I find facinating. You would think we, as a civilization I guess I would say, would be able to quickly build upon past accomplishments like making desinging and making space suits. But, apparently that's not the case as there isn't any way to just remake the old suits. Plus, the requirements are higher for new suits going forward. One huge challenge is still the backpack. There are hard physical limits there and physics does not appear to be our friend. There just isn't much they can do to get the bulk down with everything that it has to do for life support. Space suit technology is a awesome STEM field to explore. So many things you've just never thought about that takes a staggering amount of science and engineering to solve for. I'm still blown away that my oldest even thought about a career in designing suits. Not sure if she'll actually pursue it past her pre-teen years, but I'm so proud that she even thought of it on her own.