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Our Hearing Summaries

House Hearing on Exoplanet Discoveries, May 2013

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 09-May-2013 (Updated: 09-May-2013 05:48 PM)
Two subcommittees of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee held a hearing on May 9, 2013 on "ExoPlanet Discoveries:  Have We Found Other Earths? "    Witnesses were Laurance Doyle of the SETI Institute, John Grunsfeld, NASA Associate Administrator for Science Mission Directorate, and Jim Ulvestad, National Science Foundation Director of Division of Astronomical Sciences.   SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on May 9, 2013.

SASC and HASC Hearings on Military/National Security Space Programs: FY2014

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 28-Apr-2013 (Updated: 17-Aug-2014 06:52 PM)

The Strategic Forces Subcommittees of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) and House Armed Services Committee (HASC) held hearings on April 24 and April 25, 2013 respectively on the FY2014 budget requests for military/national security space programs.   SpacePolicyOnline.com published three articles summarizing various aspects of these hearings:

HASC Hearing on FY2014 National Security Space Budget Request

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 27-Apr-2013 (Updated: 17-Aug-2014 06:45 PM)

The Strategic Forces Subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) held a hearing on the FY2014 budget request for national security space activities on April 25, 2013.   One of the topics discussed was the somewhat surprising revelation that the Department of Defense is using a Chinese communications satellite for services needed for a particular area of operations.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on April 27, 2013.

 Witnesses were:

  • Douglas Loverro, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space Policy
  • Gil Klinger, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Space and Intelligence Office
  • Gen. William Shelton, Commander, Air Force Space Command
  • Betty Sapp, Director, National Reconnaissance Office

Senate Appropriations Hearing on NASA's FY2014 Budget Request

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 25-Apr-2013 (Updated: 25-Apr-2013 04:49 PM)
The Commerce-Justice-Science subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee held a hearing on NASA's FY2014 budget request on April 25, 2013.  The hearing was quite short, just 45 minutes, because of a briefing Senators needed to attend.  In that short time, the questions posed to NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden focused on funding for the Space Launch System versus commercial crew, the consequences for NASA if sequestration remains in place beyond FY2013, and the status of the James Webb Space Telescope.   Bolden said that if the sequester remains in force in FY2014, he would probably have to furlough civil servants and "all bets are off" for NASA's programs.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on April 25.

House SS&T Hearing on NASA's FY2014 Budget Request

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 25-Apr-2013 (Updated: 25-Apr-2013 03:53 PM)

The Space Subcommittee of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee held a hearing on NASA's FY2014 budget request on April 24, 2013.  NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden was the witness.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on April 24.  Major topics discussed were

  • NASA's new proposal for an asteroid retrieval mission;
  • concerns about funding for the Space Launch System versus commercial crew;
  • whether NASA will be given sufficient resources to pay for new responsibilities it has been assigned for building climate sensors, for operating a plutonium-238 production facility that for decades has been operated by the Department of Energy, and for initiating a new program to build a follow-on Landsat satellite that the Obama Administration had hoped to assign to the U.S. Geological Survey instead of NASA; and
  • the proposed government-wide restructuring of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) programs that will see NASA's role in these programs sharply diminished.

Senate Hearing on Challenges and Opportunities in Human Spaceflight

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 23-Apr-2013 (Updated: 17-Aug-2014 06:54 PM)

The Subcommittee on Science and Space of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee held a hearing on April 23, 2013 on Challenges and Opportunities in Human Spaceflight.  Bill Gerstenmaier, NASA Associate Administrator for Human Spaceflight; Lt. Gen. Tom Stafford (Ret.); and Steve Cook, Director, Space Technologies, Dynetics, were the witnesses.  The hearing addressed NASA's FY2014 budget request for human spaceflight including the new asteroid retrieval strategy to capture an asteroid, place it into lunar orbit, and send astronauts to obtain a sample.   It also looked at international cooperation in future human spaceflight missions and the role of the private sector.   SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on April 23.

House Hearing on the FY2014 Budget Request for Federal Research and Development

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 21-Apr-2013 (Updated: 21-Apr-2013 10:07 AM)
The House Science, Space and Technology Committee held a hearing on April 17, 2013 on the FY2014 budget request for federal research and development.  The witness was John Holdren, the President's Science Adviser and the Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.   On April 18, 2013, SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the portions of the hearing that discussed NASA as well as separate comments by committee chairman Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) the next day in an op-ed in the Houston Chronicle.

House Appropriations CJS Subcommittee Hearing on NASA Issues, March 2013

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 20-Mar-2013 (Updated: 17-Aug-2014 06:46 PM)
The House Appropriations Commerce-Justice-Science subcommittee held a hearing on March 20, 2013 with NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden.  Ordinarily, this would be the hearing where NASA and the subcommittee discussed the budget request for the upcoming fiscal year, but the Obama Administration has not yet submitted that request.  Instead the hearing focused on subcommittee chairman Rep. Frank Wolf's (R-VA) deep concern about Chinese access to NASA facilities and information, and generally on the budget situation at NASA.   SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on March 20, 2013.

House Hearing on Space Leadership Preservation Act

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 02-Mar-2013 (Updated: 02-Mar-2013 07:17 PM)
On February 27, 2013, the Space Subcommittee of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee held a hearing on the Space Leadership Preservation Act introduced by Rep. John Culberson (R-TX) and Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) in the 113th Congress (H.R. 823).   It is a revised version of legislation they introduced last Congress.   Both Congressmen testified at the hearing, as did A. Thomas (Tom) Young, Lockheed Martin (retired) and Elliot Pulham, CEO of The Space Foundation.   SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on March 1, 2013.

House Hearing on NASA's Strategic Direction

Marcia S. Smith
Posted: 30-Dec-2012 (Updated: 30-Dec-2012 01:31 PM)

The House Science, Space and Technology Committee held a hearing on December 12, 2012 on NASA's future.  SpacePolicyOnline.com published a summary of the hearing on December 14, 2012.  The hearing included testimony by Ron Sega, who was vice-chair of a National Research Council (NRC) report on NASA's Strategic Direction that was released the week prior to the hearing.   The full list of witnesses include the following:

  • Honorable Robert Walker, Wexler and Walker (former chairman of the House Science Committee)
  • Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Ron Sega, former astronaut, currently University of Colorado and vice-chair of the National Research Council (NRC) Committee on NASA's Strategic Direction
  • Marion Blakey, President, Aerospace Industries Association
  • Dr. Thomas Zurbuchen, University of Michigan Space Physics Laboratory
  • Dr. Scott Pace, George Washington University