In accordance with Section 204 of the NASA Authorization Act 2010, the National Research Council (NRC) will appoint an ad hoc committee to undertake a study to review the long-term goals, core capabilities, and direction of the U.S. human spaceflight program and make recommendations to enable a sustainable U.S. human spaceflight program.
The committee will:
1. Consider the goals for the human spaceflight program as set forth in (a) the National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958, (b) the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Acts of 2005, 2008, and 2010, and (c) the National Space Policy of the United States (2010), and any existing statement of space policy issued by the president of the United States.
2. Solicit broadly-based, but directed, public and stakeholder input to understand better the motivations, goals, and possible evolution of human spaceflight--that is, the foundations of a rationale for a compelling and sustainable U.S. human spaceflight program--and to characterize its value to the public and other stakeholders.
3. Describe the expected value and value proposition of NASA’s human spaceflight activities in the context of national goals--including the needs of government, industry, the economy, and the public good--and in the context of the priorities and programs of current and potential international partners in the spaceflight program.
4. Identify a set of high-priority enduring questions that describe the rationale for and value of human exploration in a national and international context. The questions should motivate a sustainable direction for the long-term exploration of space by humans. The enduring questions may include scientific, engineering, economic, cultural, and social science questions to be addressed by human space exploration and questions on improving the overall human condition.
5. Consider prior studies examining human space exploration, and NASA’s work with international partners, to understand possible exploration pathways (including key technical pursuits and destinations) and the appropriate balance between the "technology push" and "requirements pull". Consideration should include the analysis completed by NASA’s Human Exploration Framework Team, NASA’s Human Spaceflight Architecture Team, the Review of U.S. Human Spaceflight Plans (Augustine Commission), previous NRC reports, and relevant reports identified by the committee.
6. Examine the relationship of national goals to foundational capabilities, robotic activities, technologies, and missions authorized by the NASA Authorization Act of 2010 by assessing them with respect to the set of enduring questions.
7. Provide findings, rationale, prioritized recommendations, and decision rules that could enable and guide future planning for U.S. human space exploration. The recommendations will describe a high-level strategic approach to ensuring the sustainable pursuit of national goals enabled by human space exploration, answering enduring questions, and delivering value to the nation over the fiscal year (FY) period of FY2014 through FY2023, while considering the program’s likely evolution in 2015-2030.
Call for Input (Closed) The Committee on Human Spaceflight invited interested individuals and groups to submit short input papers that addressed the role of human spaceflight and its suggested future. That call for papers is now closed.
Prior to its closing deliberations, the NRC’s Committee on Human Spaceflight opened the study to a final stage of broad public input on Oct. 29th. The Committee collected input via Twitter (#HumansInSpace) on the question of:
What are your best ideas for creating a NASA human spaceflight program that is sustainable over the next several decades?
To enable a rapid exchange of ideas among participants, the conversation was conducted only via Twitter and comments were collected from12:01 a.m. EDT Tuesday,October 29, to 3 a.m. EDT Wednesday, October. 30. In order to view information on this event please go here. In order to view the tweets sent using the event hashtag (#HumansInSpace) please go here.
The committee is appreciative of the numerous comments made by the many participants in this Twitter event. The committee will be integrating the input from this approach with the many other sources of public and stakeholder input utilized in this study—such as submitted white papers, public polling data, an ongoing stakeholder survey, speakers invited to its meetings, conference participation, and direct exchanges with members of the community.
Public Discussion Via Twitter on Oct. 29, 2013 (Event Complete).
The Technical Panel will assist the study committee in executing the statement of task, particularly with regard to facilitating a robust understanding of the technical and engineering aspects of items 5 and 6.
The Public and Stakeholder Opinions Panel will assist the study committee in executing the statement of task, particularly with regard to providing public and stakeholder input to understand better the motivations, goals, and possible evolution of human spaceflight.
Please note: If the presenter has given us permission to post their presentation slides then you may view them here. Any other presentations which were provided during open sessions are available through the Academies Public Access Records Office.