NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said he saw the head of SpaceX last weekend and wanted to hear just one thing from her in light of company owner Elon Musk’s tumultuous Twitter takeover.
“Tell me the distraction we’re having with Elon on Twitter doesn’t affect SpaceX,” Nelson said, recalling a conversation he had with Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX’s president and CEO.
“Oh, sure, it’s not,” Shotwell replied, according to Nelson. “You have nothing to worry about.”
Nelson, who first named the trade before Sunday after the news conference in Houston said the rally took place after the Kennedy Center Honors in Washington, DC, on Dec. 5. and that he was completely amicable because he knows Shotwell — not Musk — runs SpaceX.
“I put a smile on my face because I know that thing is running. It runs SpaceX, Nelson said.
Asked if he had any concerns about SpaceX, Nelson said, “No, no.”
NASA pays billions to SpaceX to transport astronauts and transports to and from the International Space Station. The company is also competing to take Americans to the moon by the end of 2025 as part of NASA’s Diana III mission.
“Who will enter the lunar orbit, and the crew will transfer to the land of the SpaceX lander, and will go down to the surface of the moon,” Nelson said, praising SpaceX for cutting costs and providing good services “in terms of delivery of both crew and cargo to the International Space Station.”
SpaceX could not immediately be reached for comment Sunday.
Nelson, a former US senator and member of the House from Florida, represented the Kennedy Space Center in the old Congressional district, and flew on the Columbia Shuttle mission as a member of the House in 1986.
Nelson, a longtime friend and Senate colleague of former President Joe Biden, was tapped to lead NASA last year and has been on a course for public-private space exploration, particularly with SpaceX. To quote a Department of Defense official, Nelson told a Senate panel in May that SpaceX would have saved taxpayers as much as $40 billion in launch costs.
Shortly after taking over NASA, Nelson had a major troll problem, but it had nothing to do with Musk — because of belligerent tweets by Dimitry Olegovich Rogozin, the head of Russia’s space agency, Roscosmos, who suggested that Moscow be interspersed. Leave the space station on Earth or the US astronaut behind. Nelson urged calm and soon Russian President Vladimir Putin replaced Rogozin with Yuri Borisov, whom Nelson called a “real professional.”
From a space perspective, Nelson said, the relationship with Russia is “the greatest professional relationship since the 1975 Apollo-Soyuz,” which won the first international space mission between the US and Russia as it was then known. to the Soviet Union.
And about Musk’s tweets, Nelson said he didn’t focus on them outside of the friendship he exchanged with Shotwell.
“It’s proven in football,” Nelson said. “Look at what SpaceX will deliver in crew and cargo to the space station.”
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