New US moon-landing timetable throws Canada's Lunar Gateway role into question

The Trump administration has thrown a monkey wrench into Canada's vaunted commitment to build a Canadarm3 for a space station orbiting the moon.

The announcement made Canada the only country to officially join the American project, which could also earn Canadian astronauts tickets to the Lunar Gateway.

"The Lunar Gateway is a big mistake, not just for Canadians but for Americans as well," said Alex Ellery, associate professor in mechanical and aerospace engineering at Carleton University in Ottawa.

"To be honest, it's not necessary to have an orbiting space station to get people onto the moon permanently," he said, calling the Lunar Gateway a "diversion" and a "white elephant."

NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei and crewmate Scott Tingle work outside the International Space Station to perform maintenance on the Canadarm2 robotic arm on Jan. 23, 2018.

Internal CSA briefing notes obtained under access to information show NASA was warning Canada last fall that the agency would go elsewhere if the Liberal government didn't quickly put some money on the table for Lunar Gateway:

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