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Government shutdown: What would happen to NASA?

The space agency would have to cease most of its operations and furlough about 98 percent of its workforce, officials say.   

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A government shutdown on Tuesday (Oct. 1) would force NASA to cease most of its operations and furlough the vast majority of its workforce, space agency officials say.

Fewer than 600 of NASA's 18,000 or so employees would likely keep working through a shutdown, with the aim of ensuring the safety of human life and the protection of property, according to a plan the space agency submitted today (Sept. 27) to the Office of Management and Budget.

The International Space Station (ISS) and its six crewmembers would not be hung out to dry.

 

"To protect the life of the crew as well as the assets themselves, we would continue to support planned operations of the ISS during any funding hiatus," the NASA plan states. "Moreover, NASA will be closely monitoring the impact of an extended shutdown to determine if crew transportation or cargo resupply services are required to mitigate imminent threats to life and property on the ISS or other areas."

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