NASA Director Bill Nelson has announced the reorganization of the manned exploration division into two new divisions to optimize the space agency over the next 20 years. The new establishments are the Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate (ESDMD), the Exploration Systems Development Division, and the Space Operations Mission Directorate. NASA is revealing that it is a reorganization to increase missions in low Earth orbit and operate future plans for space exploration outside the solar system.
Specifically, ESDMD is leading the program required for the Artemis program and manned exploration of Mars. In addition, the space mission division is in charge of launch missions, including the operation of the International Space Station (ISS), and is considering expanding the lunar exploration area in the future.
Along with the reorganization, the managers who lead the organization were also announced. First of all, ESDMD will be inaugurated by James Free, a veteran who led various projects such as the ISS and Orion spacecraft, who started his career as an engineer developing a propulsion system at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in 1990. The space operations division will be headed by Kathy Ludaz, who has led the mission of the manned exploration operations mission under former NASA Director Jim Bridensteen. Ludaz has served at NASA since 1992, as well as the Space Shuttle Orbital Control Systems and Reaction Control Systems Maintenance Facility Manager. In the future, ESDMD will also be linked to lead the space operations division, and will serve as a traffic control for NASA’s exploration program to prepare for the next 20 years.
In the new system, it is said that those who maintain a constant development and operation cycle focus on manned space flight, while the other one builds a future space system and achieves space development goals through this. Nelson said the reshuffle will lead to success for NASA and the United States as they seek further space, while continuing to support the commercialization of space missions and research on the International Space Station. As a result, he said the United States will maintain its space leadership for decades to come. Related information can be found here.