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NASA flourished under Obama’s Presidency but failed to make remarkable explorations

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The last eight years of Barak Obama’s presidency were the golden-most era for NASA. The US-based space agency saw numerous strides during these eight-years; including some significant launches and research projects on Space. In these dynamic eight years, NASA landed the Curiosity Rover on Mars, introduced Kepler mission to find extraterrestrial bodies and planets outside of the Solar System, placed its Juno spacecraft into orbit around Jupiter, and made a New Horizons operation flew by Pluto.

Simultaneously, the largest space agency in the US also has witnessed a stable human attendance in its biggest artificial space laboratory the “International Space Station (ISS)’, located in lower Earth orbit, and also planned to lengthen the operations of ISS until 2024. And in all these achievements of NASA, one common thing was the involvement of ex-president of US – Barak Obama.  During his government, Mr. Obama announced the hike in NASA’s financial support by $6 billion over five years, which in other ways helped NASA to accomplish a number of remarkable achievements.

U.S. President Barak Obama, during his government, lent his utmost support towards the growth of NASA’s commercial space endeavors including the mission of placing a human on Mars.  However, apart from all his supports and notable steps to strengthen NASA’s commercial division, some decisions of the ex-president also failed to get appraisable results. For example, we can consider the uncertain shut down of The Space Shuttle program, leaving the US helpless to send human to space without shaking hand with Russia. In addition, the president also shifted the focus of NASA from Manned Lunar mission to Mars mission, which was still a matter of question.

Some Advantageous Points

Throughout Obama’s government, NASA has come across hands-off approaches to buying spaceships and services from the private space industries. With this, NASA, in these dynamic eight years experienced some notable strides in the commercial space industry. The commercial inaugurations like Commercial Cargo Program in 2005 and signing contracts with Orbital ATK and SpaceX in 2008 are few examples of its successful eight years under Obama’s presidency.

In addition to these advancements, NASA also had gotten sufficient support from Obama for its Earth Science endeavors. Barak Obama, during his administration, gave utmost priority on the satellite missions for studying the Earth’s climate. On this context, Obama also raised the annual resources for NASA Earth Science from $1.2 billion in 2007 to $1.9 billion in 2016.

In addition to these commercial advancements, NASA also set up the Space Technology Mission Directorate under the administration of Obama. Obama sanctioned a yearly budget of $687 million for the same purpose to NASA in 2016. It is helping the agency to give more focus on technological researches and developments.

Some Unfavorable decisions

Among the most unfavorable decisions, Obama’s choice to transit NASA’s focus from Lunar Mission to Mars Manned mission was quite distinguished.  With the shutdown of Space Shuttle mission in 2011, Obama’s NASA created a certain gap between America and Space exploration missions. Before the retirement decision for Space Shuttle, NASA was working on a Lunar mission called Constellation program, which was programmed for sending two new rockets to the moon by 2020. However, Obama’s pronouncement changed the entire scenario and NASA shifted its focus from Moon to Mars.

Moreover, NASA also lost the opportunity to develop new rockets for Space missions, due to the restraint of budget last year, as a result of which, currently NASA is firmly depending on Russia to send its crews to ISS.

About the author

Dave Mustaine

Dave, one of the associate writers at Science Examiner, has been taking care of all the space-related coverage. He loves to write about the latest happenings in space, and before joining Science Examiner, Dave was a part of the editorial board of a local magazine.

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