Nasa releases plan for Moon return by 2024

Katie Ramirez
September 22, 2020

The plan is to use the same impetus as with the space race, but deploy innovative technologies to explore more of the lunar surface than ever before, and land the first woman and next man on the Moon. The $28 billion would include the budgetary years of 2021-25.

NASA is definitely targeting the moon's south pole for a crewed landing in 2024 - but that timeline will be hard to achieve if Congress doesn't open its purse strings, and fast, agency chief Jim Bridenstine said.

Artemis III, happening in 2024, will be the mission to return to the moon.

"If we go to March without the $3.2 billion, it becomes more hard", he said. But NASA will need more money to fully develop the auto.

In July 2019, Mr Bridenstine told CNN That the first female astronaut to walk on the moon in 2024 will be someone "proven, someone who flew, someone who was already on the International Space Station".

At the time of this interview, there were 12 active astronauts.

On Monday, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine reaffirmed the United States space agency's commitment to the Artemis programme. But it remains unclear whether they can meet the standards in time to fly their first landing mission in 2024.

"While Nasa is leading the Artemis program, global partnerships will play a key role in achieving a sustainable and robust presence on the moon while preparing to conduct a historic human mission to Mars", the agency wrote in its progress update.

However, he said, "I think it's important that we start identifying the Artemis team early on ... primarily because I think it will serve as a source of inspiration".

The "Artemis-1" mission will be an unmanned mission that will be propelled by Space Launch System in the year 2021 and will take off with Orion capsule.

Artemis I Moon Landing Scheduled for 2024 Crewless Missions in 2021
Artemis Mission. Source NASA

Kathy Lloyders, head of NASA's Human Spaceflight, said Artemis-1 would take about a month to test all critical systems.

"If they push the funding off, our goal will be to get to the moon at the earliest possible opportunity", he said, explaining that going fast reduces Artemis' "political risks", such as cancellation by officials impatient with the pace of progress. Shortly after Orion separates from the interim cryogenic propulsion stage, astronauts will manually pilot Orion as they approach and back away from the stage.

A new test has been added to this task - display of affinity operations.

This will evaluate the handling qualities of the Orion, as well as the performance of the spacecraft's hardware and software.

The NASA plan, dubbed Artemis, is a multi-staged lunar programme involving manned and unmanned missions to the Moon.

Then, by 2024, astronauts will travel some 240,000 miles to reach the Moon's shadowy south pole.

Decades later, the plan called for NASA to establish a base for humans, called the Artemis Base Camp, which would include the infrastructure needed for long-term exploration of the moon.

Compared to Artemis, the value of the Apollo program in the 1960s and 70s exceeded wards 250 billion in inflation-adjusted USA dollars.

NASA's new and powerful rocket, the Space Launch System (SLS) and the Orion spacecraft are getting closer and closer to their dual launch date.

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