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April 12 2013

NASA's big decision: Build a moon base or lasso an asteroid?


While NASA's proposed budget for 2014 unveiled this week reaffirms the space agency's ambitious plan to send astronauts to an asteroid, some members of Congress are pushing for a more familiar goal: a moon base by 2022.

President Barack Obama's federal budget request for 2014, released Wednesday (April 10), gives NASA $105 million to jump-start a bold plan to park an asteroid near the moon. Astronauts would then explore the space rock using the agency's Space Launch System rocket and Orion capsule, with the first visit perhaps coming as early as 2021.

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