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Space Studies Board Search: Jump to Top NewsJump to Science in the Subscribe to our FREE e- Headlines newsletter! NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES NATIONAL ACADEMY OF ENGINEERING INSTITUTE OF MEDICINE NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL June 18, 2004 Current Operating Status 1990 Update to Strategy for nExploration of the Inner Planets 1 Introduction The responsibility of writing a strategy for exploration includes a corresponding responsibility to assess the extent to which its recommendations are carried out. It also requires a periodic review of the strategy to determine its relevance as its objectives are fulfilled and as the scientific field advances. In view of this advisory responsibility, the Committee on Planetary and Lunar Exploration (COMPLEX) has undertaken to review and revise the 1978 report Strategy for Exploration of the Inner Planets, 1977-1987 (National Academy of Sciences, Washington, D.C., 1978). The committee has found the 1978 report to be generally still pertinent, with some exceptions. COMPLEX therefore issues its new report in the form of an update. The previous report is not superseded, but modified as described below. The committee re-affirms the basic objectives for exploration of the planets: to determine the present state of the planets and their satellites, to understand the processes active now and at the origin of the solar system, and to understand planetary evolution, including the appearance of fife and its relation to the chemical history of the solar system. This update incorporates as appropriate the advice provided by other relevant reports of COMPLEX and the Space Studies Board (SSB) during the period since the publication of the 1978 report. The committee completed the update pursuant to the following charge: 1. Identify those portions of the 1978 strategy that remain valid and those that require reassessment. 2. Briefly summarize significant changes in the state of scientific knowledge regarding Mercury, Venus, the Moon, and Mars since the publication of the 1978 strategy. http://www7.nationalacademies.org/ssb/innerch1.html (1 of 2) [6/18/2004 10:06:24 AM]
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