By Benjamin Suciu
NASA just picked four people for a space flight around the moon. According to bbc.com Reid Wiseman, Victor Glover, Christina Koch, and Jeremy Hansen will be the four astronauts in this flight. Reid Wiseman will be the leader of this crew during the space flight while Victor Glover will pilot the spacecraft. Christina Koch and Jeremy Hansen will provide additional support to this mission around the moon. All the astronauts picked by NASA have been to space except for Jeremy Hansen. In fact, according to npr.org the leader of this mission and the pilot have both flown in space on flights to the International Space Station. Christina Koch has been in space for 328 days. A mission like this one has not happened since 1968.
According to nasa.gov the space flight planned by NASA in 1968 was referred to as Apollo 8.
This mission will be called Artemis 2 since it is the second phase of the Artemis program. The first phase of this program-the first phase was called Artemis 1-was more of a test of new technology that will be used in Artemis 2, and because Artemis 1 was a test it was unmanned. The new technology that was being tested for Artemis 1 was a spacecraft that will be used in Artemis 2 called Orion. Orion was launched for the first phase of Artemis on November 16, 2022, according to nasa.gov. The mission lasted for 25 days and was a general success although according to npr.org there were some slight issues like bad weather and a gas leak.
Artemis 2, the second phase of this space program, will launch the four astronauts picked by NASA sometime in late 2024 or early 2025. According to abc.go.com and bbc.com after the announcement that was made in Houston Texas on April 3, 2023, at NASA Johnson Space Center’s Ellington field the 4 astronauts will undergo training for the Artemis 2 mission. After Artemis 2, the third phase of the Artemis program which will be referred to as Artemis 3, it is planned tohave astronauts land and set foot on the moon. According to ucf.edu there will be three other missions after Artemis 3. The point of the Artemis program is to return humans back to the moon so humans can eventually travel to mars and asteroids to mine metals that may be worth a lot of money. At Texas where the announcement was made Victor Glover confirms NASA’s plan to travel to Mars when he said, “We need to celebrate this moment in human history because Artemis-2 is more than a mission to the Moon and back; it’s more than a mission that must happen before we send people to the surface of the Moon. It is the next step on the journey that gets humanity to Mars” According to npr.org the estimated cost of this space flight will be over $4 billion dollars.