As NASA completes its 125th space shuttle mission, attention is shifting to the next phase of space exploration, which will take astronauts back to the moon, and eventually to Mars. "We will go to the moon -- anywhere on the moon. We will stay twice as long as Apollo did with twice as many people, and be able to bring that crew home any time," says Jeff Hanley, manager of NASA's Constellation Program, in an interview with ABC News.
Although ATA Airlines this week downplayed reports it was seeking to cut its operations at Chicago Midway Airport in an effort to stave off bankruptcy, analysts say it is likely the airline will reduce its presence there if it is to survive. One analyst says he thinks ATA Airlines is "probably looking at ways of adjusting what they are doing at Midway ... but when the dust settles, they are going to be flying."
American Airlines said in an SEC filing that its fuel bill will increase by $1 billion this year due to higher oil prices. The airline said fuel costs, combined with lower average fares, likely will cause its third-quarter revenue to dip. Analysts expect the carrier to lose more than $300 million this year.
Although NASA is asking for a 5.6% budget increase next year, a number of legislators on the House Appropriations subcommittee said it may be difficult to fund the full increase. Substantial cuts in NASA's budget would delay President Bush's new space initiative, which eventually is supposed to send manned missions to the moon and Mars.
NASA's Mars rovers nearly have fulfilled their 90-day mission having accomplished almost all of their prescribed tasks. But Spirit and Opportunity keep rolling along, and NASA has extended their mission through September.