NASA Chief said at a hearing yesterday,
NASA Administrator Michael Griffin said that date is the earliest the new spaceship, or crew exploration vehicle, or CEV, could be developed no matter how much money the agency received.
Currently, the target date for building a new vehicle is 2014.
With his pitch to Congress, Griffin underscored a point he has made previously about completing the spaceship on a faster time frame.
Pressed by Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Florida, Griffin acknowledged an additional $1 billion could accelerate the program's completion.
Getting rid of the shuttle earlier than later whould save us from loss of life and vehicle. It will cost us more now, but in the long run we will save more if we abandon the shuttle now.