NASA Claims That We Must Be the First to Land on the Moon Once More

NASA Claims That We Must Be the First to Land on the Moon Once More

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said the United Powers is “in a space race with China” and wants American astronauts back on the Moon before anyone else, in order to prevent foreign powers from seizing control of water and other resources on Earth’s natural satellite.

In a news briefing on the progress of the Artemis II mission on Tuesday, the administrator of the US space agency outlined plans to establish a long-term lunar base in the “for all mankind” spirit of the Apollo missions half a century ago, from which astronauts can explore the Solar System further out to Mars and beyond.

One ambition is to land on the Moon’s south pole, where scientists believe there is water and ice, both of which are essential for human survival. “I don’t want China to get to the South Pole first, then say, ‘This is ours, stay out…'” If there is abundant water there that might be used for future crews and spacecraft, we want to make sure it is available to all, not just the one who claims it,” Nelson said.

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NASA Claims That We Must Be the First to Land on the Moon Once More

Russia has similar ambitions and plans to launch Luna-25, a robotic lander designed to investigate the regolith, plasma, and dust in the lunar polar exosphere, on Friday. Nelson, on the other hand, believes Russia poses less of a concern. The US has worked with Roscosmos for decades, and the Kremlin is unlikely to be able to send cosmonauts to the Moon for some time.

In November 2024, NASA’s Artemis II mission will transport four humans around the Moon on a ten-day trek, marking the agency’s first-ever crewed test of its Orion capsule and Space Launch System rocket.

NASA Commander Reid Wiseman, pilot Victor Glover, mission specialist Christina Hammock Koch, and Canadian Space Agency mission Specialist Jeremy Hansen comprise the team. They got an excellent look at the lunar spacecraft they’ll be traveling in this week.

“We’re fired up,” Wiseman added. He predicted that if the Artemis II mission was successful, the following group would be able to set foot on the Moon’s surface, NASA would erect its lunar Gateway facility, and men would one day visit Mars. “Artemis II has the tiniest footprint in the Artemis campaign,” remarked the commander.

NASA deputy administrator Pam Melroy stated that the space agency will undertake research on the impact of radiation on the Artemis II crew. “We have hardware in place not only for Artemis II, but for flights all the way out to Artemis VI,” she noted.

Engineers will be upgrading and repairing components from the first test flight as they continue to prepare for the mission. For example, the core stage of the SLS launch vehicle must be repaired. NASA is also currently investigating what caused the heat shield, which is supposed to protect the Orion lunar capsule as it returns to Earth, to burn up faster than predicted.

The problem is currently the “biggest open issue” in preparation for returning to the Moon, according to Jim Free, the space agency’s associate administrator, Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate.