The moon is the first stop before the march.
Setting up a base on the Moon has become a necessary first step before a manned Mars mission becomes operational. A lunar base would serve as a test site and stopover for Mars exploration missions. Speaking at the US Space and Rocket Center in Alabama, Pence urged NASA to return to the Moon in 2024 instead of the original 2028 target.
Apollo 11 Saturn V vehicle that carried three astronauts to the moon in 1969
A NEW SPACE-RACE HAS BEGUN
The US has long been in the field but China is hot on its heels and India is also catching up. The space race is no longer dominated by national space agencies with private players making considerable progress. SpaceX is among the market leaders in the private sector by Elon Musk, who has revolutionized rocket launchers to make them reusable and cost effective.
The billionaires Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson have also founded the space carriers Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic. For the US, the use has never been so high. After decades of undisputed dominance, the capable rivals are finally rising and the US is risking losing their lead in space. China has already made history by landing a rover on the other side of the moon earlier this year, with the 2030s aiming to land astronauts on the moon, and India has become an elite with its latest anti-satellite weapon test Club of the nations connected.
NASA's Apollo 11 mission in 1969 brought the first of 12 Americans on the Moon. It was the culmination of the space car from the Cold War era with the Soviet Union
CAN NASA MAKE IT HAPPEN
The US still has the edge in space. It is one of three nations, alongside Russia and China, with human space operations programs and the only one that has landed a man on the moon. But NASA has caused some problems, making the new goal unrealistic for five years.
His rocket, the Space Launch System (SLS), the heavy launcher at NASA's Nasa exploration mission center, is behind schedule and over budget. The alternatives proposed by Pence to SLS may be necessary, and NASA boss Jim Bridenstine recently said a commercial missile such as the spaceX launcher could be a possibility.