Mars: A Journey We Will Take Together

Nearly everywhere I travel, I meet people who are excited to learn more about NASA’s Journey to Mars and NASA’s plan, timetable and vision for getting there. This past week, we released a detailed outline of our plan – a clear, affordable sustainable, roadmap for sending our astronauts to Mars in the 2030s.

It’s called “NASA’s Journey to Mars: Pioneering Next Steps in Space Exploration” and I hope you’ll take a moment to give it a look, here.

A Journey such as this is something that no one person, crew, or Agency can undertake alone. As I like to tell the young people with whom I meet, it will take not only astronauts, scientists and engineers, but also, physicists, physicians, programmers, poets, teachers, designers, human capital professionals, entrepreneurs and parents who talk to their kids and get them excited about space. It will take folks working both in and out of government.

A mission of this magnitude is made stronger with international partnership – the sort of spirit and cooperation that is demonstrated so vividly by the tens of thousands of people across 15 countries who have been involved in the development and operation of the International Space Station.

This is the message I plan to share with our friends and partners next week at the International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in Jerusalem.

Yesterday I joined the leaders of space agencies from around the world to talk about NASA’s Journey to Mars and the partnerships and cooperation that help make humanity’s common dreams a reality.

Tuesday, I’ll join leaders of the Israeli Space Agency to sign a framework agreement to continue ongoing cooperation. It extends our decades-long relationship working together in Earth science, discoveries in space and new technologies.

The late Israeli astronaut Ilan Ramon – who grew up about 50 miles from where we’ll be meeting – commented that “There is no better place to emphasize the unity of people in the world than flying in space. We are all the same people, we are all human beings, and I believe that most of us, almost all of us, are good people.”

Having been blessed with the opportunity to see the Earth from space with my own eyes, I cannot agree more with this sentiment.

NASA’s Journey to Mars is ongoing right now — from our Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft to new propulsion and habitation systems – and our partnerships across sectors, across states and across the world make it stronger.