Congressman Lamar Smith

Representing the 21st District of Texas
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Science and Technology

Sign saying Neighbors Lane

As Chairman of the Science, Space, and Technology Committee, Representative Smith is an advocate for America’s innovators by promoting policies that encourage scientific discoveries, space exploration, and the development of new innovations to expand our economy and create jobs for American workers.  The Science Committee oversees agency budgets totaling $39 billion, most of which is focused on research and development.  The purpose of the Science Committee is to encourage the basic research that leads to new innovations. 
The Committee was established in 1958 as the primary congressional body to oversee NASA, our nation’s newly formed space agency.  Throughout the years, its jurisdiction has expanded, and now includes the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, the Federal Aviation Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, among others.
The Committee is currently working on legislation to reauthorize NASA’s programs and give direction to our space agency as it undergoes a period of uncertainty and transition following various administration proposals. Space exploration is an investment in our nation’s future—often the far distant future.  But space exploration also captures the minds of Americans and encourages future generations to dream big, work hard and shoot for the stars.  The Committee will also be considering various bills in the coming months with the common theme of making sure America stays competitive in the global marketplace.
As Chairman of the Science Committee, Representative Smith is looking for ways to not only encourage students to study science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), but also to inspire them to pursue careers in STEM fields. That means preparing students for advanced degrees and ensuring that young adults have the scientific and mathematic literacy to thrive in a technology-based economy.
The Science Committee plays an important role in promoting the work of Texas’ innovators, from the high-tech industry in Austin and San Antonio to the energy and space sectors in Houston.  For more information on the House Science, Space and Technology Committee, please visit the website,


More on Science and Technology

Apr 13, 2017

The Cassini space probe detected hydrogen coming from Saturn’s moon, Enceladus, which suggests alien life could develop there, according to NASA.

NASA said Enceladus has “almost all of the ingredients needed to support life as we know it on Earth,” but admitted they found no living organisms. Hydrogen is an excellent source of chemical energy that supports life near deep sea hydrothermal vents on Earth. Scientists think this kind of chemical reaction could have been the origin of life on Earth.

Apr 12, 2017

Lamar Smith, the U.S. Representative for Texas’ 21st congressional district, which includes most of the Austin-San Antonio corridor, visited Memorial Early College High School on April 10 for a question and answer session with students.

Apr 6, 2017

Thursday, April 6, 2017, 3:14 - With bipartisan support, both houses of Congress have passed the Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act of 2017, H.R. 353.

The bill aims at improving the quality of both short and long range high impact weather events and their effects.

It also gives National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Weather Service the go-ahead to establish a number of programs to enhance forecasting and alerts.

Apr 6, 2017

New legislation that restricts the Environmental Protection Agency from initiating some scientific studies will rein in frivolous research that was backed by the Obama administration, Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, told Newsmax TV.

Apr 4, 2017

A sweeping piece of legislation that aims to improve forecasts for everything from Category 5 hurricanes to El Nino has passed both houses of Congress.

Years in the making, it will become the first major weather legislation enacted since the early 1990s if signed by President Trump.

Mar 31, 2017

The solar energy industry is growing the fastest in some of the most politically conservative corners of the Lone Star State, a new report from the Solar Foundation shows.

Mar 30, 2017

Congressman Smith speaks at the 2017 Statesmanship Dinner.

WASHINGTON – On Wednesday, Congressman Lamar Smith (TX-21) received the 2017 Statesmanship Award for “Empowering Tomorrow’s Technology Leaders” by the Association of Former Members of Congress (FMC).

Mar 22, 2017

NASA gets a solid boost from the White House.

Austin/San Antonio representative Lamar Smith was among the Texas lawmakers who worked to get the NASA Authorization act signed into law by President Trump yesterday.  "The President talked about space in his State of the Union speech. He wants to make America's space program great again and that's what this bill will do."

Mar 21, 2017

President Donald Trump signed a bill to authorize and fund NASA for a mission to Mars by 2033.

The new law pumps $19.5 billion into deep space human exploration programs, including a manned mission to Mars. The law also instructs NASA to accelerate plans to put U.S. astronauts to lunar orbit in 2019 and send a crewed mission to Mars in 16 years.

Mar 8, 2017

WASHINGTON — For the first time in nearly six and a half years, Congress has passed a NASA authorization bill with the approval of such a bill March 7 in the House of Representatives.

The House approved on a voice vote the NASA Transition Authorization Act of 2017, S.442, after a brief discussion on the House floor where no members spoke against the bill. The same bill passed the Senate by unanimous consent Feb. 17.