President Donald Trump has signed into law a bill that authorizes funding for NASA’s deep-space exploration and discovery missions in the 2017 budget cycle.
The NASA Transition Authorization Act of 2017 requires the space agency to develop and implement a deep space human exploration plan and invest in science, technology and aeronautics programs, the White House said Monday.
The bill also seeks to ensure that astronauts who participate in space exploration missions will have access to healthcare services.
Congress’ passage of the legislation represents the first comprehensive NASA authorization approved in the last six years.
“NASA would like to thank President Trump for his unwavering support of the agency and express our gratitude to a bipartisan Congress for its thoughtful consideration of NASA’s future,” said Robert Lightfoot, acting NASA administrator.
Lightfoot added the agency “stands ready to meet the challenge of pioneering new frontiers in space.”