Pence says NASA will put people on the moon again

In a statement today, US Vice President Mike Pence stated that NASA will once again put people on the moon, though no time frame for this planned project was given. The announcement appears to be more of an inspirational message than part of a larger concrete plan. Pence touched on the topic of Russian and Chinese anti-satellite technology as part of his speech, ultimately calling such future moon missions 'vital' for the nation.

The announcement joins the revival of the National Space Council, a special Trump administration resurrection slated to hold its first meeting in almost a quarter of a century. The council will aid the Trump administration in developing its 'long-range strategic goals' related to NASA and the nation's space efforts.

VP Pence sits as chairman of the revived council. His statements regarding the administration's space plans largely revolve around outside threats and their apparent threat toward national security, as well as mentions of 'economic development in outer space.'

The duo — Trump and Pence, that is — will soon choose the individuals comprising a Users' Advisory Group that includes 'leaders from America's burgeoning commercial space industry.' Pence has vowed that the administration will promote a variety of educational, regulatory, and technologic reforms for giving US citizens expanded 'opportunities,' presumably related to space.

There's no indication of when NASA may put people back on the moon, nor whether there are any concrete plans in place to make this a reality. Pence also proclaimed that the US will be the first nation to put humans on Mars — whether that will be via NASA or a private company like SpaceX (or a mixture of both) is yet to be seen.