We are in a very important decade for the space race as we aim to return to the moon with the Artemis program. A mission with a very clear goal: Mars. Can we look back in 2030 and see that everything we have done has already led us to the red planet? We are in the process and 2022 will be the year the adventure begins. As NASA has published, there is already a window for the first launches of the Artemis program. At the moment without a crew, this will come in 2024, the first bet is that we can see the first launch to the moon on August 29, September 2 or September 5. Depending on the weather and preparations for the launch.
Thus, this will be the first mission of the Artemis program. It will be an unmanned flight, that is, the control will be from the Earth. The ship will fly around the moon several times and after six days will disintegrate on the way to Earth. After this joint mission between NASA and ESA, the lunar return program will become a reality. With the idea of sending more people to our satellite in the future, including the first woman to walk on the moon. But this will not be the only thing that will be done regarding the Artemisa program.
The space agencies then set their sights on two interesting projects: the Moon base and the Gateway orbiter.
Next step: Artemis lunar base
The Artemisa moon base is a project more focused on the 2030s. Lunar Orbiter Gateway It will be similar to the International Space Station (ISS), but it will orbit the moon. This will be a stopover after the base is built on the satellite, but it has yet to be built.
Construction of the orbiter is scheduled to begin in 2023, and if all goes according to plan, it could be ready in 2028. Thus, the ISS will complete its work and be able to retireWhile this could last until 2030, it will depend on many factors. But the idea is to stop using it as soon as the gateway is ready.
As is the case with other NASA projects, private companies such as SpaceX, Boeing or Blue Origin are seeking to participate in the Artemis program in one way or another, from ships to landers on the Moon.
As part of the Artemis program three missions already planned. The first will be launched in the same 2021, as we have already mentioned, and will last about twenty-five days. But there will be two more missions: Artemis-2 and Artemis-3. The second of these missions will be very similar to the first and will only last ten days in 2022. On the other hand, Artemis 3 will already take humans to the surface of the moon in 2024, and all indications are that the first woman among astronauts will set foot on the moon. If everything goes well 2024 will be a historic year for humanity, but especially for women. Who will be lucky enough to get to our satellite first?
Looking at Mars
It seems that returning to the moon with the Artemis program is already a fact, we’ve done it before, so it shouldn’t be difficult. But what will happen to Mars? Will there be a solid project before 2030?
Mars is always a fixed point in a person’s obsessions.always eager to explore. Get there, explore and create a place to live. Of course, if this is done, then it will be necessary to be under the surface of Mars, since the atmosphere of the planet is so thin that it barely protects from the solar wind and cosmic rays. But not only is life on Mars difficult, but getting there, It takes about 8 months to leave and another 8 months to return. And this is at best. Plus the time the crew spends on their mission. Training these astronauts, who will travel for months to reach a nearby planet, is very difficult and complex, but research is already underway on how to train these astronauts so they can travel when the time is right.
It’s not an easy task, but the idea is to get humans to Mars in 2024. At least that’s the idea that SpaceX, led by Elon Musk, has in mind. Nonetheless, it is foreseeable that this may be delayed before 2030, since the idea is to complete the important stages of the Artemis program before launch to the red planet. But you never know, maybe Musk’s desire to set foot on the Martian surface will eventually turn out to be victorious … However, the key date on the calendar cannot yet be marked until the company’s tests with Starship and NASA (and possibly some other space agency) are over ) give the go-ahead for the mission. Therefore, it remains only to wait.
And all this is exactly what sending people into space does, because more missions will be released both in 2021 and throughout the decade with the idea of exploring space and our environment in the solar system. There is still a lot of work to be done in the field of space exploration. And the next ten years will be key in the Artemis Program, since we could settle beyond Earth more or less continuously. Or stay only in a dream.
The space race is more alive than ever thanks to the Artemis program. and all he promises is progress. However, at the end of the decade, we will be able to tell how many of all these plans have become a reality, and how many have remained unfulfilled dreams.
This is an updated version of an article previously published in Hipertextual.
Source: Hiper Textual