The American space agency NASA is preparing to send humans to the moon again after almost half a century through its moon mission Artemis. The first step in this direction will be taken on August 29 i.e. Monday. The first test flight of the mission, Artemis-1, will be launched from the Florida Space Coast at 6:30 PM.
What is the goal of the Artemis-1 mission?
Artemis-1 is an unmanned mission. The goal of scientists with the first flight is to find out if the conditions on the moon are right for astronauts. Also, will the astronauts be able to return safely to the earth after going to the moon or not?
According to NASA, the new Space Launch System (SLS) megarocket and Orion crew capsule will reach the Moon. Astronauts usually live in crew capsules, but this time it will be empty. This mission lasts 42 days, 3 hours and 20 minutes, after which the capsule will return to Earth on October 10. The spacecraft will travel a total of 20 lakh 92 thousand 147 kilometers.
Understand the complete Artemis mission in three points…
- Jack Burns, a professor and scientist at the University of Colorado Boulder, says that the Artemis-1 rocket is a ‘heavy lift’ and has the most powerful engine of any rocket ever built. It will go to the moon, release some small satellites into its orbit and then settle into orbit itself.
- Artemis-2 is planned to launch around 2024. Some astronauts will also go there, but they will not step on the moon. They will just orbit the moon and come back. However, its time period will be longer.
- After this the final mission Artemis-3 will be launched. Astronauts going in it will land on the surface of the moon. This mission can be launched around 2030. For the first time, women will also be part of the human moon mission. According to Burns, a person of color would also be a crew member. Everyone will go to the South Pole of the Moon to search for water and ice.
How is Artemis different from the Apollo missions?
The Apollo mission was conceived by former US President JF Kennedy to defeat the Soviet Union. His goal was not only to travel to space, but to establish America in the first place in the world in the field of science and technology. However, almost 50 years later, the atmosphere is different.
Now America does not want to defeat Russia or China through Artemis mission. NASA’s mission is to thoroughly explore things beyond Earth. Scientists want to go to the moon and try to make fuel, food and buildings from the ice and soil there.
NASA’s human moon mission has been delayed for decades
The SLS rocket was built in 2010 under former US President Barack Obama. At this time, they wanted to send astronauts to the moon through the ‘Constellation Program’, but after many delays in the mission, the government decided to stop it.
According to NASA’s new planning, the SLS rocket was to be launched in 2016. After this delay, in 2019, the then NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine found out that it would take another year to prepare the rocket.
This year, a government report revealed that the government is losing millions of dollars due to the delay in NASA’s mission. However, from Donald Trump to Joe Biden, all the presidents of the country continued to try to make the Artemis mission a success.