Science

United States: Moon target this Monday!

NASA’s new Artemis 1 megarocket is due to lift off this morning from the Kennedy Center in Florida (2:33 p.m. in France) for a six-week mission. It will have to send an Orion capsule without passengers into orbit around our satellite.

The planet Mars in the NASA viewfinder

Thus, the Artemis-1 Orion capsule will be thrown 450,000 kilometers away from us and 64,000 kilometers beyond the moon before returning to Earth with all its operating systems. If the US returns to the moon, our satellite will not be the end point of the journey: it is Mars, which NASA astronauts could walk on. “We’re going back to the Moon to learn how to live, work and survive” in space, according to NASA spokesman Bill Nelson. “How to keep people alive in hostile conditions? This is the question we will try to answer. We will learn how to use lunar resources to create the things of the future when we are millions and millions of miles away from Earth, even light years away.d.”

Sustained human presence in space

If Artemis 1 succeeds in its six-week Earth-to-Moon flight, as planned by the US space agency, it will enter a manned flight period at a rate of one flight per year. In 2024, Artemis 2 will take over and have the mission of putting an astronaut capsule into orbit before Artemis 3 will land two astronauts, including the first woman, at the Moon’s South Pole in 2025. Their spacecraft will be Starship, straight from Elon Musk’s factories. Starship’s role will be to allow astronauts to travel between the Moon’s surface and Artemis 3. Now NASA wants to “sustained human presenceon the Moon to learn about our solar system and prepare for the extreme conditions of life on the Red Planet.

Maud Baeng Daisy

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