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Trump's NASA Transition Team Moving, New Admin To Appoint New NASA Chief?

Nov 16, 2016 10:02 AM EST

Now that Donald Trump is officially the President-elect of the United States after the Electoral College voted in favor of the businessman, his NASA transition team is said to be preparing for the takeover.

Trumps NASA transition team is officially called the Agency Research Team (ART). The ART team is expected to start immediately when it comes to familiarizing themselves with the agency, according to a report.

Meanwhile, NASA is ready to receive Trump's transition team. The agency administrator, Charles Bolden was even quoted saying that he is confident about the incoming official's support to the causes of the agency. Until Nov. 14, there's still no presence of any member of Trump's transition team at the NASA headquarters.

"The new administration has not yet named its transition team members that interface with NASA, so we don't yet know who we'll be talking to," Greg Williams, deputy associate administrator for policy and plans in the human exploration and operations mission directorate at NASA said in an interview. "We are prepared to talk with them when they arrive."

Like most government agencies including the Defense Department, NASA is yet to face Trump's transition team. Some say this signifies the camp's lack of preparation even before the elections if indeed Trump bags the presidency.

But despite the slow transition progress, NASA officials are hopeful that the new administration and the agency officials will come to an agreement to pursue NASA's space exploration programs most especially the journey to Mars.

"We hope to be building on the consensus we've achieved on the phases of exploration, the progression of human exploration from the ISS all the way to the surface of Mars," Williams added.

But space journalists fear that 'uncertainty' may cloud the future of NASA under the new president. "There's going to be a period of uncertainty as the new administration figures out what their priorities are in space and what NASA programs they might want to continue, which ones they might actually want to accelerate and which ones they might want to get rid of," Jeff Foust, senior writer at SpaceNews said.

Until Trump's transition team arrives at NASA, no one can tell for sure what the future holds for the agency and its space exploration programs.


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