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Elon Musk’s SpaceX selected by NASA to land next human mission on the Moon (space news).

April 17, 2021 | By | Reply More

Elon Musk will be sending his next few motors into space in celebration, as his rocket company SpaceX has just been selected by NASA to land next human mission on the Moon, in a contract worth nearly 3 billion dollars.

NASA is flying astronauts to the Moon as part of its Artemis program, and SpaceX will provide the first commercial human lander to carry a pair of American astronauts to the lunar surface – one of those two becoming the first woman on the Moon (and first person of colour, to boot).

NASA’s Space Launch System rocket will launch four astronauts aboard their Orion spacecraft for their journey to lunar orbit. There, the lucky two crew members will transfer to the SpaceX human landing system (HLS) for the final leg of their journey to the surface of the Moon.

After a week exploring the surface, the brave explorers will board the lander for a short trip back to orbit before heading back to Earth.

Elon Musk's SpaceX selected by NASA to land next human mission on the Moon (space news).

Elon Musk’s SpaceX selected by NASA to land next human mission on the Moon (space news).

SpaceX’s HLS Starship, designed to land on the Moon, leans on the company’s Raptor engines and Falcon and Dragon vehicles. Starship includes a spacious cabin and two airlocks for astronaut moonwalks. The Starship architecture is intended to evolve to a fully reusable launch and landing system designed for travel to the Moon, Mars, and other destinations.

“With this award, NASA and our partners will complete the first crewed demonstration mission to the surface of the Moon in the 21st century as the agency takes a step forward for women’s equality and long-term deep space exploration,” said Kathy Lueders, NASA’s associate administrator for Human Explorations and Operations Mission Directorate. “This critical step puts humanity on a path to sustainable lunar exploration and keeps our eyes on missions farther into the solar system, including Mars.”

“This is an exciting time for NASA and especially the Artemis team,” said Lisa Watson-Morgan, program manager for HLS at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. “During the Apollo program, we proved that it is possible to do the seemingly impossible: land humans on the Moon. By taking a collaborative approach in working with industry while leveraging NASA’s proven technical expertise and capabilities, we will return American astronauts to the Moon’s surface once again, this time to explore new areas for longer periods of time.”

On the Moon, NASA has proposed building a new habitat and rovers, testing new power systems and other advancements under the Artemis program to ensure that its ready for the exploration of Mars.

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Colonel Frog is a long time science fiction and fantasy fan. He loves reading novels in the field, and he also enjoys watching movies (as well as reading lots of other genre books).

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