Plus, it’d just be pretty damn cool.

The status of the asteroid return mission is not clear at this time.

Overall, the bill seems to be a solid and definitive plan for NASA, and appears to prioritize the agency in ways that make sense: large-scale, deep-space exploration and technology development to NASA, and low-Earth orbit cargo and crew ferrying responsibilities farmed out to commercial enterprises.


An actual bill with a mandate for a Mars landing is a big deal. This may be the best piece of bipartisan legislation to come out of our government in a long time.


Now, we just have to get to the Red Planet before Elon Musk and his army of robots and fanatical Martian Muskovites take the whole damn thing over.