NASA plans to send Artemis to follow the historic Apollo mission for the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing. NASA’s ambition is to launch the space program and to send humans to the Moon by 2024. The US space agency has the plan to send first instruments and tools on the dark side of the Moon with Artemis. Afterward, they will send astronauts. Everything is expected to go by plan somewhere around 2020 and 2021.
NASA is planning the launch in 2020 with its powerful Space Launch System (SLS) rocket together with Orion spacecraft from the Space Center in Florida. The flight test is called Artemis 1 and NASA will demonstrate its capability to send once again humans on the lunar orbit and even on the surface of the Moon. When SLS is launched, a various number of CubeSats will perform some experiments for demonstrating their technology. The focus this time is on the Moon South pole, in which Artemis will have the purpose to explore the far region of the Moon.
NASA Is Vowing to Land on the Dark Side of the Moon in 2020
Besides this, from Earth, we only see the same side of the Moon. This is happening because the lunar orbit is rotating on its axis, just like the Moon does with the Earth. So, there is also the so-called dark side of the Moon, that wasn’t explored by astronomers, and NASA thinks that it’s rich in ice. NASA has in mind to have a permanent mission to the dark side of the Moon in the future, and maybe the astronomers could find resources of frozen water.
However, the incredible goal set by NASA was announced in April this year, and the US space agency wants to send American astronauts where no man has ever been before. Steven Clarke, who is the deputy associate administrator of the Science Mission Directorate at NASA, says that from all the observations, they are sure that the South Pole contains ice, and maybe other abundant resources.
To sum up, the dark side of the Moon is an unexplored world, and this will be a unique challenge for NASA and its astronomers because they will have to build the capabilities to travel much further into space.
Jasmine holds a Master’s in Journalism from Ryerson University in Toronto and writes professionally in a broad variety of genres. She has worked as a senior manager in public relations and communications for major telecommunication companies, and is the former Deputy Director for Media Relations with the Modern Coalition. Jasmine writes primarily in our LGBTTQQIAAP and Science section.