Houston (UPI) Apr 15, 2011
NASA says its Mission Control Center will be renamed to honor Christopher C. Kraft Jr., America's first flight director of human space missions.
A ceremony was held at the Johnson Space Center in Houston to unveil a nameplate on the historic building designating it the Christopher C. Kraft Jr. Mission Control Center, a NASA release said.
As flight director, Kraft managed all of the Mercury and several Gemini missions, and was in that role for America's first human spaceflight, first human orbital flight and first spacewalk, NASA said.
"Dr. Kraft's life stands as a testament to his dream of exploring space. A dream he realized here on Earth, in this building and at this center, through his engineering and managerial expertise," Johnson Space Center Director Michael Coats said.
He is a space pioneer without whom we'd never have heard those historic words on the surface of the moon, 'Houston, Tranquility base here. The Eagle has landed.'"
Kraft served the nation's space program for 45 years.
"When we started the Space Task Group in 1958," Kraft said, "I don't think any of us appreciated what we were up to, where we were going, what it was going to result in, the impact on the country, the impact on the world."
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NASA spared cuts in US spending bill passage
Washington (AFP) April 15, 2011
NASA breathed a sigh of relief Friday after Congress approved a government spending bill that secured $18.5 billion for the US space agency, sparing it from the prospect of cuts. "We appreciate the work of Congress to pass a 2011 spending bill," NASA administrator Charles Bolden said in a statement after the passage of the bill Thursday, adding that it "gives us a clear path forward to conti ... read more
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