The Coalition for Deep Space Exploration (Coalition) applauds Congress for passage of the FY 2021 Consolidated Appropriations Act, with strong funding for NASA’s science and exploration programs. The bill increases funding for NASA by more than $642 million above appropriated FY 2020 levels, with a $538 million dollar increase for Exploration and a $162 million increase for Science.


“The Coalition is pleased to see ongoing and robust support for our nation’s deep space exploration and science programs, and for our continued presence in low Earth orbit,” said Dr. Mary Lynne Dittmar, CEO and President of the Coalition for Deep Space Exploration. “In a year when so many challenges have faced our nation, this strong support for NASA’s programs is a powerful commitment to the future, ensuring that the United States will continue to lead and inspire in space.”


The bill reiterates bipartisan and bicameral Congressional support for NASA’s deep space human exploration systems. The Space Launch System (SLS), Orion crew vehicle, and Exploration Ground systems received funding to continue progress toward their first flight next year. The bill also provides continued development of capabilities for future missions, with $400 million in funding for the Exploration Upper Stage, and $1.973 billion for Exploration Research and Development, allocating $699 million for the lunar Gateway and $850 million for the Human Landing System.


With regard to science, the bill provides $415 million for the James Webb Space Telescope to launch next year on a journey that will extend humanity’s vision to the early universe. $505 million is provided for the next generation Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope (WFIRST) development activities, and $404 million for Europa Clipper and Lander missions. Lunar Discovery and Exploration activities received $452 million, including the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) and Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS). In addition, the bill provides funding for work on the Mars Sample Return mission set to launch in 2026, among other missions and initiatives.


For more information on the Coalition, its members and mission, visit


About the Coalition for Deep Space Exploration

The Coalition for Deep Space Exploration is a national organization of more than 60 space industry businesses and universities focused on ensuring the United States remains a leader in space, science and technology. Based in Washington D.C., the Coalition engages in outreach and education reinforcing the value and benefits of human space exploration, space science and commerce with the public and our nation’s leaders, building lasting support for a long-term, sustainable, strategic direction for our nation’s space program.