of the titles of this article is ambiguous. For further meanings see NASA (term clarifying).

The N ational A eronautics and S pace A dministration (NASA, based 1958) is civilian US - federal authority for air and space travel.

To Logo of the Apollo program

table of contents

vision and mission

NASA designation as its vision „the life improving here to expand after lives outside and to find lives there outside “. From it the mission results „our homeland planets to understand and protect to investigate and look for for lives the universe and to inspire the next generation from researchers to “.


race in the universe

major item: Race in the universe

the Soviet Union made 1957 with the first artificial satellite in the universe, Sputnik 1, which the USA on its own space program attentively, which was still in the child shoes. The congress saw a danger for national security and the technological projection/lead of the USA in Soviet success and required immediate and consistent measures during US president Dwight D. Eisenhower and its advisors rather for a calm, thought itself reaction out discussions. After months-long consultation it was clear that a new authority should be created, which should be responsible for all non-military space activities.

To 29. July 1958 signed president Eisenhower “national the Aeronautics and space act”, which planned the creation of NASA. The new authority took at the 1. October 1958 their work up. At that time it consisted of four laboratories and approximately 8000 coworkers, which originated from that already 46 years old national Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA).

The first projects of NASA concerned themselves with manned space travel and were at the pressure race in the universe. The Mercury program of 1958 was the first step: One examined whether and under which conditions humans in the universe could survive.

To 5. May 1961 was so far it. Alan B. Shepard Jr. the first American was in the universe, when he reached space with Freedom 7 15 minutes long in an arc-shaped flight. The first American, that the earth circled was John Glenn with a five-hour flight of the Friendship 7 to 20. February 1962.

After the Mercury Project had proven the fact that manned space missions are possible brought NASA the Gemini project into being. With this project experiments should be accomplished and be worked on problem definitions concerning a moon-landing mission. First manned flight of a Gemini rocket became to 23. March 1965 of Virgil “Gus” Grissom and John W. Young accomplished. Nine further missions followed, with which the feasibility of longer space stays and the meeting and Andockens of two spaceships was proven. In addition these flights collected medical data over the effects of weightlessness on the human body.

the Apollo program

after the success of the Mercury and Gemini program was started the Apollo program, in order to accomplish further experiments in the universe and to bring in the case of ideal even humans into the proximity of the moon. A substantial change in its conception experienced the Apollo program by the announcement of new president, John F. Kennedy. To 25. He, the United States said May 1961 should plan to set until 1970 “humans off on the moon and to return him again surely on earth”. From now on it was thus a goal of the Apollo program of bringing astronauts on the moon.

After eight years of preparing missions, at which also the first large misfortune in the history of NASA took place, with which NASA all three crew members of the Apollo 1 - mission lost, when the rocket on the launch pad began to burn, finally reached the Apollo program its goal: To 20. July 1969 landed with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin first humans on the moon and turned to 24. July surely on earth back. Amstrongs first words, when it stepped from the lunar excursion module of the Apollo 11, could more appropriate not have been: “That's one small steps for [A] one, one giant leap for one child.” (“That is a small step for humans, but an enormous jump for mankind. ”). After Armstrong and Aldrin still ten further humans on the moon landed up to the end of the Apollo program in December 1972.

NASA had won the race with the landing on the moon in the universe. Actually that represented desired success, however now a goal was missing, on which it was worthwhile itself in addition-works. In addition shrank the interest of the public, which was absolutely necessary, in order to guarantee large budgets by the congress. With Lyndon Johnson, NASA lost then also still its most important political supporter. For it became who ago of brown active as lobbyist in Washington.

There were plans for ambitious subsequent projects to start like the establishment of a space station or a moon basis or until 1990 a manned Mars mission after the end of the procurement of Saturn and Apollo rockets gave it in addition however hardly still to support. After it would have come with Apollo 13 almost to a disaster, with which an oxygen explosion would have killed all three astronauts, got NASA again more attention from the population, but although still Apollo missions to Apollo 20 were planned, Apollo 17 was the last mission under the designation “Apollo”. Reasons for the end of the missions were budget shortening, partly due to the Viet Nam war, and hope to be able to build in the near future a re-usable spaceship.

annual budget

the budget of NASA
year budget
1998 13.6 billion US Dollar
1999 13.7 billion US Dollar
2000 13.6 billion US Dollar
2001 14.3 billion US Dollar
2002 14.9 billion US Dollar
2003 15.4 billion US Dollar
2004 15.1 billion US Dollar
2005 16.2 billion US Dollar
2006 16.5 billion US Dollar *
2007 17.0 billion US Dollar *
2008 17.3 billion US Dollar *
2009 17.6 billion US Dollar *
2010 18.0 billion US Dollar *
(*) estimated

list of the NASA administrators

  1. T. Keith Glennan (1958-1961)
  2. James E. Webb (1961-1968)
  3. Thomas's O. Paine (1969-1970)
  4. James C. Fletcher (1971-1977)
  5. Robert A. Frog (1977-1981)
  6. James M. Beggs (1981-1985)
  7. James C. Fletcher (1986-1989)
  8. smelling pool of broadcasting corporations H. Truly (1989-1992)
  9. Daniel S. Goldin (1992-2001)
  10. Sean O'Keefe (2001-2005)
  11. Michael Griffin (2005)


NASA consists of a set of mechanisms. In addition jet

space programs of NASA Mercury program

see also

to ESA, Russian space agency, Japan Aerospace exploration Agency

Web on the left of

Commons: NASA - Pictures, videos and/or audio files

  • the section “history” is partly based on a translation of the article EN: NASA of 16. July 2005 in the English-language Wikipedia.

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