-- K. Edgett, firstname.lastname@example.org, 22 May 1994.
Date: Fri, 20 May 94 From: squyres@astrosun.TN.CORNELL.EDU (Steve Squyres) Subject: Mars Surveyor Greetings: I am writing to you concerning the Mars Surveyor program and its status in the Congressional budget process. Mars Surveyor is a new program to send a series of low-cost orbiter and lander missions to Mars. It is the replacement for both Mars Observer and MESUR in NASA's plans for Mars exploration. Mars Surveyor was included for a new start in fiscal year 1995 in the President's budget submission to Congress. Its status in the Congress, however, is uncertain. In the Senate, there appears to be some support. The Senate appropriations committee with NASA oversight has not yet receieved its budget allocation, however, so substantial doubts remain. In the House, the situation is still more difficult. There the budget allocation has been made, and it is clear that some significant cuts will be made in the NASA budget on the House side. In fact, the chairman of the House authorization committee with NASA oversight recently introduced a bill eliminating Mars Surveyor from the budget. However, the House appropriations subcommittee has not yet generated its mark-up of the budget, so there is still some room for maneuvering. If Mars Surveyor were to be approved by one appropriations subcommittee but not the other, it would go to conference committee later this summer for resolution. It is extremely important at this stage in the budget cycle that supporters of space science programs make their support known on Capitol Hill. The House mark-up of the budget is expected on June 6th, so any communications with members of that subcommittee should take place well before then. The Senate mark-up will probably be a few weeks later. I have attached two documents to this note. One is a list of all the members of both the House and Senate appropriations subcommittees that have responsibility for the NASA budget. It gives office addresses, fax numbers, and telephone numbers. For regular mail, it is adequate to use: Honorable _____ Honorable _____ United States Senate United States House of Representatives Washington, DC 20510-1103 Washington, DC 20515-1101 The other document is a writeup generated at JPL and edited by me that describes some key characteristics of the Mars Surveyor program. It does not dwell on Mars science, since I assume that most recipients of this note are already familiar with the important scientific problems at Mars that can be addressed by this program. If you choose to contact Congressional representatives regarding Mars Surveyor, both of these documents may be helpful to you. Along with appropriations subcommittee members, it is also always helpful to contact your own local representatives. One suggestion I would like to make: Mars Surveyor is, in a real sense, in competition with other portions of the NASA budget. Experience has shown that it is productive to promote programs in which you are interested, but counter-productive to do so at the expense of other programs. It will help to say good things about Mars Surveyor, but it will not help to say bad things about other parts of the NASA budget. I am distributing this message widely to members of the planetary science community. Please feel free to forward it to your colleagues. Thank you, Steve Squyres email@example.com ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- HOUSE APPROPRIATIONS SUBCOMMITTEE FOR VA, HUD, AND INDEPENDENT AGENCIES MAJORITY MEMBERS Louis Stokes (Chair) Jim Chapman Esteban Torres 2365 Rayburn House 2417 Rayburn House 1740 Longworth House Washington, DC 20515 Washington, DC 20515 Washington, DC 20515 ph: 202-225-7032 ph: 202-225-3035 ph: 202-225-5256 fax: 202-225-1339 fax: 202-225-7265 fax: 202-225-9711 Allan Mollohan Marcy Kaptur Ray Thornton 2242 Rayburn House 2104 Rayburn House 1214 Longworth House Washington, DC 20515 Washington, DC 20515 Washington, DC 20515 ph: 202-225-4172 ph: 202-225-4146 ph: 202-225-2506 fax: 202-225-7564 fax: 202-225-7711 fax: 202-225-9273 MINORITY MEMBERS Jerry Lewis (Ranking Minority Member) Dean Gallo Tom DeLay 2312 Rayburn House 2447 Rayburn House 407 Cannon House Washington, DC 20515 Washington, DC 20515 Washington, DC 20515 ph: 202-225-5861 ph: 202-225-5034 ph: 202-225-5951 fax: 202-225-6498 fax: 202-225-0658 fax: 202-225-5241 SENATE APPROPRIATIONS SUBCOMMITTEE FOR VA, HUD, AND INDEPENDENT AGENCIES MAJORITY: Barbara Mikulski (Chair) J. Bennett Johnston Frank Lautenberg 709 Hart Senate 136 Hart Senate 506 Hart Senate Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510 ph: 202-224-4654 ph: 202-224-5824 ph: 202-224-4744 fax: 202-224-8858 fax: 202-224-2952 fax: 202-224-9707 J. Robert Kerrey Dianne Feinstein Patrick Leahy 303 Hart Senate 331 Hart Senate 433 Russell Senate Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510 ph: 202-224-6551 ph: 202-224-3841 ph: 202-224-4242 fax: 202-224-7645 fax: 202-228-3954 fax: NONE MINORTIY MEMBERS Phil Gramm Alfonse D'Amato Don Nickles (Ranking Minority Member) 520 Hart Senate 133 Hart Senate 370 Russell Senate Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510 ph: 202-224-6542 ph: 202-224-5754 ph: 202-224-2934 fax: 202-224-5871 fax: 202-224-5754 fax: 202-228-2856 Christopher (Kit) Bond Conrad Burns 293 Russell Senate 183 Dirksen Senate Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510 ph: 202-224-5721 ph: 202-224-2644 fax: 202-224-8149 fax: 202-224-8594 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- MARS SURVEYOR Mars Surveyor is an aggressive but cost constrained program to explore Mars over the decade extending from 1997 through 2006. Consisting of small orbiters and landers built by industry and launched to Mars at 26-month intervals from 1996 through 2005, the Surveyor Program will conduct investigations designed to address the mysteries surrounding the most Earth-like planet in our solar system. It will acquire much of the data that would have been returned by Mars Observer, and also replaces the Mars Environmental Survey (MESUR) mission in NASA's plans. The cost of Mars Surveyor is quite modest compared to these other missions: $120-150 million per year, including all flight systems, launch costs, mission operations, and data analysis. The first mission in the Mars Surveyor Program, designated the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS), is scheduled for launch in November 1996 aboard a Delta launch vehicle and is designed to accomplish many of the objectives of the original Mars Observer mission as well as provide a data relay capability for future surface missions. The 1996 MGS mission is followed with two launches during the 1998 opportunity: a small orbiter approximately one-half the size of MGS with the goal of carrying the balance of the Mars Observer payload; and a small lander derived from, but smaller than the 1996 Mars Pathfinder lander. Both 1998 spacecraft are planned for launch aboard a new launch vehicle, designated the "Med-Lite", which provides approximately one-half the performance of a Delta for approximately one-half the cost. Additional landers and orbiters are planned for launch during the 2001, 2003, and 2005 Mars launch opportunities to continue and expand the investigations initiated by the 1996 and 1998 orbital and surface missions. It is envisioned that this portion of the Mars Surveyor Program would serve as the cornerstone for an international Mars exploration program involving many countries in a highly synergistic and cost-effective approach to establishing a network of environmental monitoring stations on the surface of Mars. Because of the inherent interest and excitement generated by planetary exploration, particularly the allure of Mars, the Surveyor Program provides an excellent vehicle for conducting a far reaching science, mathematics, and space education program directed to grammar, middle, and high school students. The key to Mars Surveyor educational outreach plans is the connection of the engineering, science, and management problems faced during the implementation of Mars missions to the fundamental physical, as well as economic and social, principles typically taught at various levels from kindergarten through graduate school. Significant funds have been set aside within the Mars Surveyor program for educational programs. Mars Surveyor also provides an opportunity for significant technology development, infusion, and transfer. The cost constrained nature of Mars Surveyor mandates the development and infusion of technologies which provide either significant reductions in the size and weight of spacecraft or increased autonomy of spacecraft in carrying out their exploration and science missions. Small spacecraft can be launched by smaller, cheaper launch vehicles. Highly autonomous spacecraft reduce operations costs by requiring a much smaller number of flight controllers than required to monitor and command current spacecraft. Technologies which have potential dual use applications by commercial enterprises will be identified and mechanisms will be established to insure the efficient transfer of these technologies to industry. In summary, the Mars Surveyor Program exemplifies the faster, better, cheaper philosophy critical to the successful re-invention of NASA and other government agencies. Faster - the maximum development cycle for any mission in the Surveyor suite is less than 3 years. Better - multiple launches of small spacecraft and the prospects of international cooperation provide for a high science return from a program that is not reliant on the success of any single component or mission. Cheaper - total annual costs for the Surveyor Program are capped at less than $150M.