Sen. Brown Writes to President Obama on Future NASA Glenn

As Ohio Delegation Meets with New NASA Administrator, Brown Calls on Obama Administration to Bring New Missions, Jobs to Ohio

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) wrote to President Obama last night about the need to bring new work – particularly in the field of alternative energy research and development – to the NASA Glenn Research Facility in Cleveland. Brown sent the letter prior to a meeting of the Ohio Delegation he is convening later today with NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. NASA Glenn conducts critical research, but a new mission would help reverse the 43 percent job loss experienced by the facility since 1993.

“NASA Glenn has helped make Ohio a leader in aerospace,” Brown said. “While NASA Glenn conducts cutting-edge research, it has lost too many jobs and missions over the years. That’s why I’m working with President Obama to retain critical research and development at NASA Glenn and bring new missions to the facility. The Glenn Research Center is a leader in space, aeronautics, and exploration and it must play a central role in NASA’s future.”

Brown has also been urging the administration to bring an alternative energy mission to NASA Glenn.  Brown outlined why NASA Glenn would be well suited for the field.

“NASA Glenn has a long history of developing alternative energy.  It had the first mass generating windmill, led the way in solar development, and was an innovator of alternative fuels,” Brown wrote in the letter to Pres. Obama sent late last evening. “Creating a robust alternative energy mission there would help retain and grow Glenn’s expertise while supporting existing NASA missions since much of this work would overlap.”

A full copy of Brown’s letter to Pres. Obama can be found below:


January 19, 2010


President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear President Obama,

As you make the final decisions on your budget for Fiscal Year 2011, I urge you to give a high priority to strengthening the research and development capabilities of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

In order to lay the foundation for successful programs in space and aeronautics, NASA needs to pursue fundamental research and technology development in those fields.  Advances in in-space propulsion and refueling, space communications, microgravity research, and resource utilization beyond the Earth will be critical for future space exploration.

With a track-record of offering expertise in research and development that dates back to the 1940’s, NASA’s Glenn Research Center is particularly well-suited to meeting our Nation’s needs in these areas.  The Glenn Research Center can also offer expertise in areas such as modeling and simulation, materials science, and test facilities that benefit vehicles in both air and space.

In addition to its successful work in these areas, NASA Glenn has a long history of developing alternative energy.  It had the first mass generating windmill, led the way in solar development, and was an innovator of alternative fuels.  Creating a robust alternative energy mission there would help retain and grow Glenn’s expertise while supporting existing NASA missions since much of this work would complement other missions. 

As NASA contemplates its future and the future of US human spaceflight, growing an alternative energy mission at Glenn will further NASA’s long term goals during a critical time for the Agency.  A robust alternative energy mission at Glenn would allow the Center to grow and help support the administration’s bold efforts to secure our national and economic security in a lower-carbon future.  

In advance, I appreciate your attention to this request.

Sincerely,

Sherrod Brown
United States Senator

cc: The Honorable Peter Orszag
      The Honorable Charles Bolden, Jr.

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