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Old January 16 2008, 05:11 PM   #4
Mark de Vries
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Location: Groningen, the Netherlands
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Re: Set your own goals for NASA

- Establish reliable and efficient Low Earth Orbit capability, ideally in cooperation with ESA, Roskosmos, JAXA and other international partners. The ISS will have its place in this as the central hub of activities. It will, however, be equipped to handle six-person crew sooner than the plan is now. I'd also work with the Brits on their proposal to build and maintain two crew habitat modules on the ISS.

- Maintain a solid and steady program of interplanetary probes that can work for years on end without serious degradation of performance. Take the MER rovers, Deep Impact and New Horizons as examples and build on that.

- Take a developed LEO infrastructure as an integral part of further human exploration of the Moon and Mars. Get the Orion programme off the ground as a first step in that. Medium- to long-term missions on the ISS could be used as part of an astronauts training for a mission to the Moon, an asteroid or Mars.

All elements will be integrated in one clear vision for further exploration and development of the solar system. Unmanned missions for initial exploration, LEO activites as an experimentation and training ground, and manned missions to develop things further.
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