Artemis program Overview Updated October 15, 2021

Artemis program

NASA's 21st century plan to return to the moon

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86 'Artemis' stories

February 2020 - October 2021

NASA’s Artemis program is an attempt to land humans on the moon for the first time in almost 50 years. The program is largely the result of Space Policy Directive 1, which tasked NASA with focusing more time on getting back to the moon.

Named after the Greek goddess of the moon, the Artemis program is planned to get a human on the moon by as early as 2024. Artemis I is set to launch in November 2021 with the goal of sending the Orion spacecraft into a retrograde orbit around the moon to test its viability. Artemis II will launch two years later with the same objective, except this time, there will be a crew aboard. Artemis III is set to launch in 2024 and will be the mission that finally puts another human on the moon.

NASA plans on using what they learn from visiting the moon to help take the next giant leap that is visiting Mars.

 

 

 

 

How many people are in space right now?

how many people are in space right now

The International Space Station is designed to always be crewed by cosmonauts and astronauts. For this reason, women and men have been living and working in space constantly since the first Expedition mission in the year 2000. So how many people are in space right now?

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NASA publishes ‘First Woman’ graphic novel with Augmented Reality

This World Space Week, NASA has joined in, sharing a new graphic novel about the first woman to go to the Moon.

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Lockheed Martin to construct factory building near Kennedy Space Center

Lockheed Martin recently opened their STAR Center at the former Astronaut Experience (ATX) attraction location. Now they are moving forward with plans to construct another factory building near their offices and AstroTech.

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Artemis I preparations, Space Force’s new look, NASA leadership split & more top stories

This week, the Space Force gained a new look, NASA human spaceflight leadership has been divided, and preparations continue for Artemis I.

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New AstroVan: NASA Seeks Input from Potential Partners on Next Generation Astromobile

For decades, NASA has used mostly modified motorhomes to transport astronauts to the launch pad. Now, NASA is requesting proposals for the Agency’s next Astrovan.

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Blue Origin-HLS lawsuit built on SpaceX’s use of Flight Readiness Reviews

A federal court released a redacted copy of Blue Origin’s lawsuit against NASA’s Human Landing System selection. In it, we get our first glimpse at what Blue Origin is basing this lawsuit over.

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NASA’s Artemis program gets wings with new engine contract

Aerojet Rocketdyne will design the main engine for NASA’s Orion spacecraft for Artemis missions 6-14.

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NASA Administrator admits 2024 lunar landing date might not happen

Artemis III landing on the Moon in 2024 has always been a lofty goal, but NASA officials stuck to the date even as the previous administration left. Today, they began to officially acknowledge the breakdown of the deadline.

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[UPDATE: More testing and pictures] Orion mass simulator installed atop Artemis I SLS

NASA teams are racing towards the first launch of the SLS rocket at Kennedy Space Center. The final pieces needed for sull stack testing were installed a few days ago, the Orion stage adapter structural test article, and Orion Mass Simulator. The full stack of SLS is expected to roll out to LC-39B for further testing and a Wet Dress Rehearsal.

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Inspiration4 all civilian mission to orbit, West Coast Starlink, Falcon Heavy on display, & more Top stories

This week Inspiration4 launched into orbit and returned to Earth, SpaceX launched polar Starlink satellites from the West Cost, and a Falcon Heavy side booster will be put on display.

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NASA will Announce the landing site of its VIPER moon rover this Monday

Researchers at NASA’s Ames Research center will announce the landing site of the Artemis program’s first robotic rover, VIPER. The rover will explore the lunar south pole in search of resources for crewed missions.

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SpaceX, Blue Origin, Dynetics, and more selected again for further lunar lander concepts

NASA announced contract awards to five companies for further development of lunar lander concepts for its Artemis Program on Tuesday.

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NASA is looking for Lunar Rovers for its Artemis Program

With the continued goal of crewed landings on the Moon in 2024, NASA is in need of more flight hardware for lunar exploration. The next big part will be a rover, NASA put out a request for information regarding proposed Artemis rovers.

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NASA Administrator Bill Nelson meets with Ukrainian President Zelensky

Last Tuesday, NASA Administrator Bill Nelson hosted Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky at NASA’s headquarters in Washington, DC. 

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When will NASA send SLS and Orion on the first Artemis mission around the Moon?

NASA is sending astronauts back to the Moon for the first since Apollo 17 in 1972. The new space exploration program is called Artemis, and the first Artemis mission is just months away from happening. A new report though begs the question of when will NASA truly launch Artemis 1?

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NASA shares new video detailing why we are heading back to the Moon

Tuesday NASA released a video on their YouTube channel that went over why we are heading back to the Moon and what we expect we can learn from going.

Blue Origin’s new lawsuit continues to fight NASA’s lunar lander decision

A few weeks back the US Government Accountability Office denied Blue Origin and Dynetic’s protest of NASA’s Human Landing System contract. Since then Blue Origin has been on a PR campaign to throw mud at the winner, SpaceX, and has started a lawsuit against NASA.

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NASA Astronaut Victor Glover tours his possible future ride to the Moon

NASA Astronaut Victor Glover visited NASA’s Kennedy Space Center to get a tour of the SLS rocket being stacked in the VAB.

SpaceX’s Super Heavy ready for flight in a few weeks, Artemis EVA suits & more Elon tweets

While Blue Origin continues to attack SpaceX’s award of the Human Lander System contract for Artemis, SpaceX remains hard at work towards the first orbital launch from their “non-existent” spaceport. More so, Elon has criticized Bezos for holding back the Artemis program in the very ways that Bezos has previously spoken against.

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Elon Musk offers to help NASA with their delayed next-gen spacesuit program

NASA has been working on a new generation of Extravehicular Mobility Units (EMU), the big white space suits you see on spacewalks, for their Artemis Program. Elon Musk offered his help with xEMU development to make sure it would hit its 2024 deadline.

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NASA test fires SLS RS-25 engine at Stennis, validating new manufacturing process

NASA recently conducted an important 8-minute RS-25 single-engine hot fire test at Stennis Space Center in South Mississippi. Space Launch System (SLS) relies on four RS-25 engines (and two solid rocket boosters) to leave the planet for destinations like the Moon and beyond as part of NASA’s Artemis program.

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GAO backs NASA decision to rely on SpaceX Starship for Moon landing, dismissing Blue Origin-backed protest

SpaceX Starship will officially be the single solution for the first lunar landing mission under NASA’s Artemis program to return to the Moon. This comes after the US GAO backed the decision to use Starship as the lander, stating it didn’t break any laws with the selection. The space agency first announced its decision to land astronauts on the Moon with SpaceX in April, but legal protests from the Blue Origin-led National Team and Dynetics halted progress for the contract.

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Northrop Grumman and NASA finalize contract for Artemis Gateway module

It has been known for a while that Northrop Grumman will be the company tasked with building one of the most important modules on NASA’s Gateway station. It took a while, but now the company has finalized the firm, fixed-priced contract worth $935 million.

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SLS’s next stage gets stacked at the Kennedy Space Center

It’s a slow process but NASA is stacking their first Space Launch System rocket in the VAB at Kennedy Space Center. The newest part was just stacked in the last few days.

Artemis 1 manikin named Campos by public vote

The Artemis program will be launching the first woman and the next man to the Moon. Before humans can step aboard an SLS rocket launching towards the Moon, we need a test run. Inside the Orion capsule for this first launch of the Artemis program, Artemis I, will be a manikin some have dubbed a ‘Moonikin’, but now this dummy has a name.

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General Motors and Lockheed Martin will team up in hope to build NASA’s next lunar rover

Today the two defense contractors announced they will team up to develop the next lunar rover for NASA’s Artemis program.

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Preparations underway for the LC-39B Emergency Egress System

In cases where there is an emergency on the pad and the crew needs to get out of there in a hurry. Companies have designed Emergency Egress Systems (EES) to do just that job. SpaceX and ULA each have them, and in the past, NASA has as well. It looks like Artemis, NASA’s mission to the moon, is in the early stages of having her’s built.

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On the anniversary of Alan Shepard’s historic flight, SpaceX lands Starship SN15 successfully

Today marks the 60th anniversary of Alan Shepard’s fateful flight, now today will mark another first. The first successful landing of a Starship vehicle by SpaceX.

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Petition created to name NASA’s Lunar Gateway after Michael Collins

Earlier this week we lost a great hero of NASA’s space program and now a petition for a great way to honor him is out there.

SpaceX Starship as NASA’s Artemis lunar human landing system tidbits

NASA is buying SpaceX’s Starship rocket a $2.9 billion ticket to the Moon, and the ramifications of that decision are plentiful. The Washington Post was first to report that Starship is NASA’s sole choice for the Artemis human landing system for astronauts going to the Moon. The agency later held a press conference with reporters during which it made the news official while adding more color to the story. NASA has also published a source selection statement written by Kathy Lueders detailing specifics around its decision.

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NASA selects SpaceX to develop human landing system for Artemis moon mission using Starship

NASA is actively working on Artemis, a space exploration program that includes a mission to send the first woman and first person of color to the Moon during this decade. Astronauts will travel from Earth in NASA’s Orion spacecraft which will launch on the space agency’s Space Launch System rocket. SLS gives Orion the boost it needs to reach the Moon, but Orion doesn’t touch down on the lunar surface. A third vehicle called a human landing system is needed to transport astronauts to the surface of the Moon. One year ago, NASA selected three potential partners for providing the human landing system for Artemis 3, the first mission in the program that includes walking on the Moon.

Later today, the U.S. space agency will officially announce which partner it will proceed in funding for development. Ace Washington Post space reporter and author Christian Davenport has scooped the 4 p.m. EDT press conference with source selection details. According to Davenport, SpaceX has won the contract with its Starship-based human landing system bid.

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[Update: Test Window Announced] Artemis I booster stacking is now complete; Awaits first Core Stage

Over the last few years, the pieces of NASA’s Artemis I mission have slowly been making their way to Kennedy Space Center for final checkouts and stacking. For the past couple of months, NASA has been preparing to receive the final parts of the rocket with the first step towards a fully stacked SLS finishing the other day.

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SpaceX selected to launch the first modules for NASA’s lunar outpost

A key part of NASA’s Artemis program is Gateway, a lunar outpost 1/6 the size of its cousin the International Space Station. It will be used as the orbital research lab for Earth-faring astronauts destined to explore the lunar surface and possibly as a rest stop for those heading to Mars. The first two modules are planned to launch in 2024 on top of the party pleaser Falcon Heavy rocket.

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SLS: NASA says aborted hot fire test met several goals of the test and clarifies cryo-cycling concern

After the SLS Core Stage hot fire test that aborted just over a minute into the test, it was uncertain what objectives were met and if they would need to do a second test fire. During the second press conference Tuesday afternoon, concerns arose about the Core Stage reaching its cryo-cycling limit before the launch but today NASA shares the Core Stage and Artemis 1 timeline may be in better shape than first thought.

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Why did Space Launch System’s Green Run hot fire test abruptly end early? NASA can explain …

NASA released a statement this week detailing information about some of the findings that contributed to the early shutdown of the Artemis 1 Core Stage during the Green Run Hot Fire test on Saturday. The test was originally supposed to last about 8 minutes, but ended up only lasting 67.2 seconds, far short of the minimum amount of time needed to certify the core.

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[UPDATED] NASA’s upgraded mobile launcher for larger Space Launch System rocket moving forward

NASA recently submitted a permit detailing facility construction and modification plans to support its next Mobile Launch Platform for Space Launch System, the agency’s nearly complete rocket to the Moon. We first have to go back to where SLS all started with the Constellation program to understand why NASA is building a new Mobile Launch Platform.

The current Mobile Launcher, ML-1, was initially built for the Constellation program between 2009 and 2010. When the Constellation program was canned in October 2010, NASA started reworking ML-1 to support their new program for the Space Launch System. With the increased complexity and weight of SLS, issues quickly began to arise.

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NASA prepares for Artemis 1 with SLS booster stacking and Orion capsule preparations [Gallery]

NASA invited media to Kennedy Space Center to witness the progress being made with the stacking of the SLS Solid Rocket Motors and to see the Orion Crew Capsule as it is being prepared to be moved to one of the final processing facilities before being stacked later this year.

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SLS: Green Run engine test ends early, likely pushing back first Artemis Moon mission [Gallery]

NASA is returning astronauts to the Moon for the first time since the Apollo program ended in the 1970s, but first the space agency must develop a new rocket capable of reaching lunar orbit. Space Launch System is that rocket, and it’s been in development for several years.

Over the weekend, NASA’s Stennis Space Center in South Mississippi conducted a critical engine test on the core stage of Space Launch System and its four RS-25 engines. While these engines aren’t new — they actually date back to use on the space shuttle — but being configured on a rocket to the Moon is untested.

The epic engine test wasn’t a total success, however, as the vehicle detected an anomaly and stopped firing its engines well before the required test duration. The good news is NASA says both the rocket core stage and its engines remain in good shape.

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What is the Artemis program and how will it take us back to the Moon and beyond?

Signed on the 45th anniversary of the final crewed mission to the Moon, Space Policy Directive 1 directed NASA to begin a mission to send the next man and first woman to the Moon with a pathway to continue onto the crewed exploration of Mars. Since then, the Artemis program has expanded to include already existing programs as well as new commercialized contracts for new services.

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How to watch NASA’s epic 8-minute-long Space Launch System rocket core stage hot fire test

This Saturday NASA and their contractors are planning on conducting the final Green Run test for NASA’s Artemis-1 core stage of the Space Launch System rocket. This will be the only time the stage will be fired for a full 8 minutes before its flight.

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NASA developing lunar navigation architecture for its upcoming Artemis missions

Preparations for NASA’s Artemis program are in full swing as the first mission, Artemis I, is set to launch later this year. However, one crucial part of the program that still requires a solution is navigation architecture. With extended stays on the moon, humans and autonomous robots alike would benefit greatly from having a system similar to GPS available.

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A look at NASA’s new xEMU spacesuits

Good spacesuits are arguably the most crucial aspect of any mission to space that involves humans. Even an uncomfortable spacesuit could impose substantial issues or limitations that you wouldn’t expect. That’s why engineers and designers at NASA have been hard at work designing a next-generation spacesuit called xEMU.

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Artemis: Dynetics hits milestone on ‘crew-centric, sustainable solution’ for Human Landing System

Huntsville-based firm Dynetics announced today that is has completed the submission process for its Human Landing System proposal for NASA’s Artemis Moon program. If selected, the Leidos-owned subsidiary would be responsible for the vehicle used to take astronauts from the Orion capsule to the surface of the Moon.

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SLS: NASA targeting core stage hot fire test for ‘as early as January 17’

A couple of weeks ago, on December 20, NASA completed the wet dress rehearsal test for the Space Launch System (SLS) core stage. And then today, the agency finally announced that it would be moving forward with the green run hot fire test, targeting a date “as early as January 17.”

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NASA testing new ‘super resolution’ flash lidar landing technology

Researchers at NASA’s Langley Research Center are working with Blue Origin in testing a new, more accurate version of flash lidar. The testing is part of NASA’s suite of lunar lander technologies that will be used as part of the Artemis program.

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Astronauts to begin testing using new Orion spacecraft simulator

A couple of weeks ago, NASA announced a cadre of astronauts selected to participate in the agency’s Artemis program. Those same astronauts will now get the opportunity to test out the Orion spacecraft hardware with a new simulator that recently arrived at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

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SLS: Core stage wet dress rehearsal complete, ‘early shutdown’ in fueling test being evaluated

After a few weeks of trial and error, NASA says it has completed the wet dress rehearsal test step for the core stage of Space Launch System, the agency’s rocket to the Moon and beyond. This is the final step before NASA and Boeing engineers fire the core stage in place for eight minutes to collect data.

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Artemis I: NASA opts to “use as is” after an Orion backup Power and Data Unit comms card failed

Earlier this month it was reported that NASA’s Orion spacecraft to the Moon had a dead backup channel on a Power and Data Unit communication card. The Verge shared an internal document that showed multiple approaches to address the failed redundant channel, and the option to fully restore it was estimated to take up to a year. NASA has now issued a decision on how it will move forward with the Orion spacecraft ahead of its first uncrewed mission around the Moon.

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