President Bush is expected to announce in his coming State of the Union speech his support for an initiative NASA proposes to use nuclear power for space exploration. NASA expects that it could do this in the next decade.
Nuclear power is said to propel rockets much faster than the rocket fuel used for conventional space craft. Sean O'Keefe, the chief of NASA, stated last summer that nuclear power is necessary for a long voyage to Mars. It would save on food and fuel.
NASA is playing down this proposal and appears to be awaiting Bush's announcement first. Anti-nuclear groups are expected to express opposition since they fear such projects could backfire and lead to nuclear contamination. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2684329.stm