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beecee

'Artemis' 2024 Moon mission:

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https://phys.org/news/2019-05-nasa-unveils-artemis-moon-mission.html

NASA on Thursday unveiled the calendar for the "Artemis" program that will return astronauts to the Moon for the first time in half a century, including eight scheduled launches and a mini-station in lunar orbit by 2024.

The original lunar missions were named for Apollo—Artemis was his twin sister in Greek mythology, and the goddess of hunting, wilderness and the Moon.

Administrator Jim Bridenstine confirmed that Artemis 1 will be an uncrewed mission around the Moon planned for 2020.

Next will come Artemis 2, which will orbit Earth's satellite with a crew around 2022; followed finally by Artemis 3 that will put astronauts on lunar soil in 2024, including the first woman.

The three will be launched into space by the biggest rocket of all time, the Boeing-led Space Launch System (SLS), which is currently under development but has seen numerous delays and has been criticized in some quarters as a bloated jobs program.

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20 hours ago, et pet said:

“If the $1.6 billion does not materialize, we will fall back on the previous plan, which was to land in 2028,” the NASA chief told reporters at a news conference earlier in the day.   " 

Thanks for that update et pet...interesting to say the least.

What we can be reasonably certain of though, is that in time, NASA [or someone else] will return to the Moon, and I see that probably as a prelude to eventual boots on Mars. I'm not really interested in the question/s "should we do these things?", the reality is that we will do these things in the course of time. 

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https://www.universetoday.com/142283/nasa-has-picked-the-companies-thatll-help-build-its-lunar-landers/#more-142283

NASA has Picked the Companies That’ll Help Build its Lunar Landers

NASA has chosen 11 American companies to help them build the next lunar landers that will carry humans to the surface of the Moon. The 11 companies will conduct studies and work on prototype landers in the coming years. It’s all part of NASA’s Artemis mission, and the mission’s 2024 date with the surface of the Moon.


“Our team is excited to get back to the Moon quickly as possible, and our public/private partnerships to study human landing systems are an important step in that process.”

 

Aerojet Rocketdyne

Boeing

Blue Origin

Lockheed Martin

Northrop Grumman

Sierra Nevada

SpaceX

Last week, the timeline for NASA’s Artemis mission to the Moon was moved up by several years, to 2024. That means there’s a lot of work to be done. To help these 11 companies get going on their work, NASA is using what they call undefined contract actions. That allows the companies to begin working while the contract is still being negotiated. Sounds like NASA will lose some leverage, but that’s what you get when politicians step in to dictate a timeline for a complex mission.

The undefined contract actions announced by NASA will help the 11 chosen companies get going on the ambitious timeline for Artemis. But NASA still needs the Space Launch System (SLS) and the Orion capsule to make Artemis meet its 2024 goal. And both of those developments have seen delays

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https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-awards-artemis-contract-for-lunar-gateway-power-propulsion

May 24, 2019

RELEASE 19-042

NASA Awards Artemis Contract for Lunar Gateway Power, Propulsion:

In one of the first steps of the agency’s Artemis lunar exploration plans, NASA announced on Thursday the selection of Maxar Technologies, formerly SSL, in Westminster, Colorado, to develop and demonstrate power, propulsion and communications capabilities for NASA’s lunar Gateway.

“The power and propulsion element is the foundation of Gateway and a fine example of how partnerships with U.S. companies can help expedite NASA’s return to the Moon with the first woman and next man by 2024,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. “It will be the key component upon which we will build our lunar Gateway outpost, the cornerstone of NASA’s sustainable and reusable Artemis exploration architecture on and around the Moon.”

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Posted (edited)

 https://qz.com/1625496/house-rejects-trumps-nasa-and-space-force-plans/ 

   " Donald Trump is not getting his space money 

     Last week, the White House submitted a late funding request for an additional $1.6 billion in spending on a proposed Artemis moon program to return astronauts to the lunar surface by 2024. Today, the House Appropriations committee left that request out of its spending plan for NASA and ignored many of the administration’s other space priorities.

Without that funding, any hope of the accelerated mission to the moon touted by Vice President Mike Pence is likely to disappear. "   https://qz.com/1625496/house-rejects-trumps-nasa-and-space-force-plans/ 

 

Edited by et pet

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Whether this is government funded, or privately funded, whether the "accelerated" time frame eventuates or not, will not change the fact that a return to the Moon will in time eventuate.

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Posted (edited)

https://www.theverge.com/2019/5/15/18622884/nasa-moon-artemis-program-bridenstine-congress-money-budget

extract: 

"NASA’s first big hurdle is a political one. Over the next few months, the space agency must sell this initiative to Congress, which controls the government’s budget. Lawmakers may like the idea of putting women on the Moon, but they may not want to raid the budgets of other federal programs to help NASA achieve its goal. Plus, Congress has to buy into NASA’s blueprint for this lunar return mission, and lawmakers will be taking a close look at how the space agency plans to get there".

So as yet, certainly not a "faite accompli" with regards to any cancellation as yet. 

Ambitious, yep certainly, but again, if NASA and the USA want to maintain their undoubted superiority in space exploration, then being ambitious is the way to go. Again also I raise the possibility of an International effort. Wouldn't it be great for humanity to focus on such an endeavour, and the obvious benefits for human kind, not only in returning to the Moon, but the next step after that, then the next, and the next. Look at the incredible benefits that have been forthcoming, with the so far "baby steps" that have been taken, with the limited LEO and robotic probes. While I have seen many arguments that question  "why should we go back to the Moon", I have seen none that dispute the fact that in time, "we will go back to the Moon".

Quote

"Taking money from an education program is sure to draw strong backlash, especially from Democrats. It also runs the risk of making this whole Artemis program a partisan issue, which is something that NASA has mostly been able to avoid as political divides have grown stronger during the Trump administration. “The showstopper here is if this is interpreted as a partisan project,” says Miller".

Wouldn't that be a terrible decision for the US lawmakers to make, based on party politics! I see enough of that crap in my own country of late. Trump maybe a few cents short of a dollar, but that is no reason why politicians of other persuasions should not recognise a good thing when they see it, and not like little school children, spit the dummy and say no just to be contrary. Even if Trump's reasons are not what they should be...that is for the advancement of science and not just personal recognition or self interests.

https://www.space.com/nasa-lunar-gateway-start-small.html

NASA's Grand Plan for a Lunar Gateway Is to Start Small

By Mike Wall 3 days ago

The space agency had been targeting 2028 for the first post-Apollo crewed lunar landing. But in March, Vice President Mike Pence announced a newly aggressive timeline, pushing the moon shot up four years. 

To make sure Gateway is ready to go in 2024, NASA will go first with a scaled-down, bare-bones versionconsisting solely of a Power and Propulsion Element (PPE), scheduled to launch in 2022, and a miniature "utilization module." This first incarnation of Gateway will be able to support two-person missions to the lunar surface, NASA officials have said.

 

more at link......

 

In the meantime I prefer to remain hopeful and optimistic, in recognising the fact that even if the ambitious 2024 return and the Artemis program falls short, it is simply delaying the inevitable, and also leaving the door open for another power to achieve a return to the Moon.

Edited by beecee

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https://phys.org/news/2019-05-nasa-equipment-moon.html

MAY 31, 2019

NASA plans to send equipment to Moon from 2020:

For the first time since the 1970s, the United States is planning to send equipment to the surface of the Moon in 2020 and 2021, in anticipation of a crewed lunar mission in 2024, NASA said Friday.

 

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https://phys.org/news/2019-06-nasa-woman-moon-world.html

NASA to land first woman on the moon. 'It would be out of this world.'

From 1969 to 1972, six NASA missions named for the Greek god Apollo successfully landed 12 men on the surface of the moon; Neil, "Buzz," two men named Alan, two men named Charles, Edgar, David, James, John, Jack and Eugene.

At the time of Neil and Buzz's 1969 moonwalk, Libertyville author and former rocket test engineer Suzanne Slade was 4 years old. She remembers none of it. She does remember three years later, when Eugene and Jack—the last of the men to have walked the moon—made their trip out of earth and back.

"It was almost unbelievable," she said.

Now, nearly 50 years later, NASA has set out on a mission that would have then been considered even more unbelievable—to land the first woman on the moon.

more at link........

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The  new projected mission will be called "Artemis" the Greek goddess of the Moon and as I have interestingly just found out, Apollo's twin sister...quite appropriate!

The other interesting fact is that this projected landing will take place at or near the Lunar South pole...NB: The polar regions of the Moon are conjectured to probably contain surface water ice in craters, due to the negligible Lunar axial  tilt and being in permanent "shadow,"  

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https://phys.org/news/2019-07-moon.html

What will it take to live on the moon?

With NASA planning to revisit the lunar surface by 2024 and send multiple expeditions by 2028, Rutgers University's Haym Benaroya is optimistic that people will someday live on the moon.

Benaroya, a distinguished professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, has spent most of his career focusing on lunar settlement and space exploration issues.

Benaroya, who works in the School of Engineering and wrote "Turning Dust to Gold: Building a Future on the Moon and Mars" and "Building Habitats on the Moon," and specializes in designing structures for extreme environments, discussed the challenges of living on the moon.

 

 

more at link...................

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