NASA plans to present a Mars robotic exploration architecture at a National Academies panel meeting to be held in late August, Space News reported Monday.
Michael Meyer, lead scientist for NASA’s Mars Exploration Program, said the new Mars architecture will support sample return missions and that he is working to get “agency endorsement” of the proposed architecture before the August presentation.
The August meeting seeks to evaluate NASA’s efforts to implement the 2011 planetary science decadal survey.
“We’re on the hook to present something because this is actually something that Congress has asked for in their appropriations,” he said during a teleconference meeting of the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group Monday.
NASA’s budget request for fiscal 2018 allocated $2.9 million in funds for future exploration missions to Mars such as follow-on Mars 2020 rover missions and development plans for a new orbiter, the report added.