NASA Artemis 2 Crewed Mission Update

Wise

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Below is an interesting press release on Mar 10, 2023 from nasa.gov:


Artemis II is the first crewed flight test on the agency’s path to establishing a long-term scientific and human presence on the lunar surface.

NASA and CSA (Canadian Space Agency) will announce during an event at 11 a.m. EDT (10 a.m. CDT) on Monday, April 3, from NASA Johnson Space Center’s Ellington Field in Houston, the four astronauts who will venture around the Moon. Traveling aboard NASA’s Orion spacecraft during Artemis II, the mission is the first crewed flight test on the agency’s path to establishing a long-term scientific and human presence on the lunar surface.
 
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Wise

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An audit of NASA's Office of Inspector General estimated the true cost of the Artemis program at about $93 billion until 2025.

Going to the moon again is definitely interesting. The Artemis program is a robotic and human Moon exploration program led by the United States' National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) along with three partner agencies: European Space Agency (ESA), Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and Canadian Space Agency (CSA).


That crewed moon landing will occur on the Artemis 3 mission. As the first to fly, Artemis 1 will not carry a crew, but will fly on a trip around the moon with instruments, cubesats and more aboard. The mission will use the new Space Launch System to launch an Orion space capsule to the moon and back.

For the benefit of all humanity, NASA and its partners will land the first woman and first person of color on the surface of the Moon with Artemis. Following two Artemis test missions, Artemis III, currently planned for 2025, will mark humanity's first return to the lunar surface in more than 50 years.
 

Taxslave2

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An audit of NASA's Office of Inspector General estimated the true cost of the Artemis program at about $93 billion until 2025.

Going to the moon again is definitely interesting. The Artemis program is a robotic and human Moon exploration program led by the United States' National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) along with three partner agencies: European Space Agency (ESA), Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and Canadian Space Agency (CSA).


That crewed moon landing will occur on the Artemis 3 mission. As the first to fly, Artemis 1 will not carry a crew, but will fly on a trip around the moon with instruments, cubesats and more aboard. The mission will use the new Space Launch System to launch an Orion space capsule to the moon and back.

For the benefit of all humanity, NASA and its partners will land the first woman and first person of color on the surface of the Moon with Artemis. Following two Artemis test missions, Artemis III, currently planned for 2025, will mark humanity's first return to the lunar surface in more than 50 years.
Basing jobs on sex and skin colour will always get you the best of the best.
 
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Taxslave2

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Well, that was the rule in the U.S. from 1609-1964.

At least two Republican senators are on record wanting to go back to that, in the name of "freedom of association."
I'm guessing they take Freedom of Association to also mean Freedom not to Associate.
 

spaminator

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Canada's role in Artemis II a 'major step forward'
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
James McCarten
Published Apr 02, 2023 • 4 minute read

WASHINGTON — Ask Marc Garneau if he’d go back to space and the first Canadian to ever make the trip doesn’t hesitate: “In a wink.”


It’s another matter entirely, of course, whether the now-retired former astronaut and Quebec MP — at 74, he finally gave up his seat in the House of Commons just three weeks ago — still has the right stuff.


“You always wonder, when you reach a certain age, whether you would still have that capability that you had when you were younger,” said Garneau, who flew three Space Shuttle missions between 1984 and 2001.

“Having flown three times, I consider myself blessed beyond any reasonable expectation in life.”


Now the country’s pre-eminent “elder statesman” of space, Garneau has long waited for the day when he’ll be joined in the pantheon of pioneering explorers by the next astronaut to earn the “first Canadian” honorific.


Who will it be? The world finds out Monday.

That’s when NASA and the Canadian Space Agency will introduce the four astronauts — three from the U.S., one from Canada — who will steer the next stage of an ambitious plan to establish a long-term presence on the moon.

Scheduled to blast off as early as November 2024, Artemis II will be the first crewed mission to the moon since the final Apollo mission took flight in 1972. It will also be the first time a Canadian has ventured beyond Earth’s orbit.

Canada’s astronaut corps currently comprises four people, including David Saint-Jacques, an astrophysicist and medical doctor from Montreal and the only member of the group who’s already been to space.

Saint-Jacques, 53, flew to the International Space Station in 2018. He was selected for the corps in 2009 alongside Jeremy Hansen, 47, of London, Ont., a colonel and CF-18 pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force.


Joining them in 2017 were test pilot and Air Force Lt.-Col. Joshua Kutryk, 41, from Fort Saskatchewan, Alta., and Jennifer Sidey, 34, a mechanical engineer and Cambridge University lecturer from Calgary.

“I’m not in any way jealous or envious,” Garneau said. “I’m just so excited that we are now taking Canada on what I would say is a major, major step forward.”

It’s not quite the giant leap of 1969, but it’s close — about 7,400 kilometres away, to be precise.

The four Artemis astronauts will encircle their home planet before sling-shotting into deep space for a figure-8 manoeuvre around the moon, making Canada and the U.S. the only two countries to ever pass over the dark side of the lunar surface.

“When I think back on 1984, when I first flew, we didn’t know what might happen after that,” Garneau said.


“To now have the opportunity for Canada to be only the second country to have an astronaut go on a lunar mission — this is extraordinary.”

It’s also the product of a tremendous amount of hard work and investment, said Western University professor Gordon Osinski, director of the school’s Institute for Earth and Space Exploration.

Osinski spent the bulk of last week in Houston, taking part in simulated spacewalks to better learn and understand how best to conduct the geological work future astronauts will be required to do on the lunar surface.

While that research isn’t directly related to Artemis, it’s bound to be a key factor down the road as the ultimate mission continues to evolve into something that will bear little resemblance to its Apollo ancestors.


“I can do field geology on Earth with a Star Trek-like instrument that tells me the chemistry of a rock. It wasn’t even imagined 50 years ago,” Osinski said.

“So as we progress in the whole Artemis program, I think you’ll really see 21st-century space exploration like we might imagine from Star Trek and things.”

Even now, Osinski is still incredulous that Canada managed to secure a spot on Artemis II — and he credits everything from the country’s geographical and economic ties with the U.S. to the ongoing work of the Canadian astronaut corps.

Then there’s the Canadarm, the articulated remote manipulators that became a fixture of Space Shuttle and International Space Station missions and a point of national pride for countless Canadians of a certain age.


“The U.S. has let go and said, ‘OK, Canada, we trust you enough that we’ll literally put the lives of our astronauts in your hand,”‘ Osinski said.

“So that trust maybe goes a long way to explain how we did it.”

The plan is to put a man and woman on the moon in 2025 in service of the ultimate goal: eventually dispatching astronauts to Mars. And Canada is expected to play a critical role going forward.

“We’re going back to the moon. The moon, that’s a big thing,” Innovation Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said last week.

“This is Canada on the world stage, doing big things.”

That, ultimately, could be Artemis II’s biggest legacy for Canada: inspiring the next generation of astronauts in much the same way that Apollo did all those years ago.

This time, though, the visuals will be spectacular.

“As much as we get excited about robots and the Canadarm and things, having a personal experience in that could be a huge moment and a big milestone for the Canadian space program,” Osinski said.

“There’s just something about having an astronaut do that.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 2, 2023.
 

spaminator

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London-born astronaut ready for his NASA moon shot
London native Jeremy Hansen has been named one of four astronauts on a new mission to orbit the moon and set the stage for deep space exploration, NASA and the Canadian Space Agency announced.

Author of the article:Randy Richmond
Published Apr 03, 2023 • Last updated 1 day ago • 5 minute read

London native Jeremy Hansen has been named one of four astronauts on a new mission to orbit the moon and set the stage for deep space exploration, NASA and the Canadian Space Agency announced.


“It is glorious,” Hansen, 47, said with a smile on stage at the Johnson Space Center in Houston Monday morning.


“I am left in awe of being reminded what strong leadership, setting big goals, with a passion to collaborate and a can-do attitude can achieve. We are going to the moon together. Let’s go!”

The first Canadian to head to the moon was born in London in 1976, and raised on a farm near Ailsa Craig. At 12, he joined the 614 Royal Canadian Air Cadet Squadron in London, before moving to Ingersoll for high school.

A colonel in the Canadian Armed Forces, Hansen has a bachelor of science in space science from Royal Military College of Canada, and a master of science in physics from the same institute.

A CF-18 pilot, he joined the Canadian Space Agency in 2009 and graduated from astronaut candidate training in 2011.


He’s now joining the Artemis 2 mission, the first journey to the moon by astronauts since the end of the Apollo 17 mission in December 1972.

The crew will first orbit Earth, and then rocket hundreds of thousands of kilometres for a figure-eight manoeuvre around the moon before their momentum brings them home.

The 10-day flight will “validate the capabilities and techniques needed for humans to live and work in deep space . . . paving the way for long-term human exploration missions to the moon, and eventually Mars,” NASA said in a news release.

Hansen will join a crew consisting of Americans Christina H. Koch, Victor Glover and Reid Wiseman. Wiseman will command the mission, with Glover as pilot, and Koch and Hansen as mission specialists.


The trip, slated for launch late next year, also will bring the first woman and the first person of colour to the moon. All 24 Apollo astronauts who orbited or walked on the moon were white men.

The next mission, Artemis 3, plans to land the first woman and the first person of colour on the moon, likely near Shackleton crater at the south pole.

“Under Artemis, we will explore the frontiers of space and push the boundaries of what is possible,” said Vanessa E. Wyche, director of the space center, home base for America’s astronaut corps

The astronauts will be the “forerunners as humanity looks to find its place among the stars,” Norm Knight, chief of NASA’s flight director office, said.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Hansen will write a page of history as the first Canadian to travel to the moon.

“I’m very, very excited to see that a Canadian has been chosen to actually go to the moon. It’s a major event for us,” he said, giving credit to Hansen and calling him an “exceptional individual” who “will do all Canadians proud.”


Officials from both countries made the announcement before an enthusiastic crowd that included astronauts, NASA staff and schoolchildren, the ceremony replete with videos and booming theme music befitting a Hollywood movie.

“There are two reasons why a Canadian is going to the moon. That makes me smile when I say that,” Hansen told the crowd.

“The first one is American leadership. It is not lost on any of us that the United States could choose to go back to the moon by themselves. But America has made a very deliberate choice over decades to curate a global team, and that, in my definition, is leadership,” he said.

“As a Canadian I am very proud to reflect that back to you and I am grateful, all of Canada is grateful, for that global mindset and that leadership, so thank you.”


His typically Canadian sense of appreciation earned him applause, as did his next line about his country’s impact on space exploration.

“The second reason is Canada’s can-do attitude,” Hansen said. “For decades now, thousands upon thousands of Canadians have risen to that challenge to bring real value to the international partnership with respect to space exploration.”

Steps taken by Canadian scientists, engineers, military and government staff, “all of those have added up to this moment where a Canadian is going to the moon with our international partnership and it is glorious,” Hansen said.

Canada began working with NASA in 1969, the same year Neil Armstrong became the first human to walk on the moon. The robotic arm for space shuttles, the Canadarm, became a symbol of the co-operation between the two countries and Canada’s technological skills.


The most recent federal budget last month included $1.1-billion to continuing participating in the International Space Station until at least 2030; $1.2-billion to develop a lunar utility vehicle to assist astronauts on the moon; and $76.5-million to support Canadian science on the Lunar Gateway station, a planned space station that will orbit the moon and serve as a hub for future landings.


U.S. President Joe Biden articulated the vision of co-operation last month in his speech to Parliament, seizing on the Artemis mission as a symbol of limitless potential for Canada, elbow-to-elbow with the U.S.

“We choose to return to the moon, together,” Biden enthused, invoking the famous words of John F. Kennedy in 1962.


“Here on Earth, our children who watch that flight are going to learn the names of those new pioneers. They’ll be the ones who carry us into the future we hope to build: the Artemis generation.”

Canada’s Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne echoed a spirit of co-operation Monday, telling the Houston audience the two countries can accomplish “big things” together.

“I know Canadians could not be more proud,” he said. “This is more than just about going back to the moon, this is about investing in the future. This is about possibilities, this is about seizing the opportunities of the space economy from health and food security, to climate change, and much more.”

With files from Canadian Press and Postmedia

rrichmond@postmedia.com

Twitter.com/RandyRatLFPress
 

spaminator

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Jeremy Hansen to be first Canadian to encircle moon on Artemis II
The London, Ont. native said American leadership and Canada’s 'can-do attitude' are the reasons why he is going to the moon

Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
James McCarten
Published Apr 03, 2023 • Last updated 1 day ago • 5 minute read

HOUSTON — Jeremy Hansen, a colonel and CF-18 pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force, has been selected to become the first Canadian to venture further into space and orbit the moon.


NASA and the Canadian Space Agency made the long-awaited announcement Monday introducing the four astronauts who will steer the next stage of an ambitious plan to establish a long-term presence on the moon.


“I am left in awe of being reminded what strong leadership, setting big goals, with a passion to collaborate and a can-do attitude can achieve, and we are going to the moon together,” Hansen said after the announcement. “Let’s go!”

The other three astronauts on the Artemis II mission are all American: Christina Hammock Koch, Victor Glover and G. Reid Wiseman.

“It’s difficult to pick just four from a group that by its very definition attracts the best and the brightest that humanity has to offer,” said Norm Knight, chief of NASA’s flight director office.



Knight said the astronauts will be the “forerunners as humanity looks to find its place among the stars.”

Artemis II, as it’s known, is currently slated to launch as early as November 2024 and will be the first crewed mission to the moon since the final Apollo mission took flight in 1972.

The crew will orbit Earth before rocketing hundreds of thousands of kilometres for a figure-8 manoeuvre around the moon before their momentum brings them home.

Vanessa E. Wyche, director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center, home base for America’s astronaut corps, said this mission represents the culmination of years of hard work and dedication by NASA and its partners.

“Under Artemis, we will explore the frontiers of space and push the boundaries of what is possible,” she said.


The plan is to put a man and woman on the moon in 2025 in service of the ultimate goal: eventually dispatching astronauts to Mars.

President Joe Biden articulated the vision last month in his speech to Parliament, seizing on the Artemis mission as a towering symbol of limitless potential for Canada, elbow-to-elbow with the U.S.

“We choose to return to the moon, together,” Biden enthused, invoking the famous words of John F. Kennedy in 1962.

“Here on Earth, our children who watch that flight are going to learn the names of those new pioneers. They’ll be the ones who carry us into the future we hope to build: the Artemis generation.”

Canada’s Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne echoed a spirit of co-operation Monday, telling the Houston audience the two countries can accomplish “big things” together.


“I know Canadians could not be more proud — proud to have for the first time a Canadian astronaut who will travel to space as part of the Artemis II mission,” he said.

Canada is designing, building and operating a lunar utility vehicle to support operations on the mission.

“This is more than just about going back to the moon, this is about investing in the future,” Champagne said. “This is about possibilities, this is about seizing the opportunities of the space economy from health and food security, to climate change, and much more.”

Hansen, 47, from London, Ont. is one of four in Canada’s current astronaut corps.

He said American leadership and Canada’s “can-do attitude” are the reasons why he is going to the moon.


“It is not lost on any of us that the United States could choose to go back to the moon by themselves, but America has made a very deliberate choice over decades to curate a global team,” he said.

He told the crowd gathered at the announcement thousands of Canadians have risen to the challenge of bringing value to space exploration.

“All of those have added up to this moment where a Canadian is going to the moon with our international partnership, and it is glorious,” he said.

Another member of Canada’s astronaut corps is David Saint-Jacques, an astrophysicist and medical doctor from Montreal and the only member of the group who’s already been to space.

Saint-Jacques, 53, flew to the International Space Station in 2018. He was selected for the corps in 2009 alongside Hansen.


Joining Hansen and Saint-Jacques in 2017 were test pilot and Air Force Lt.-Col. Joshua Kutryk, 41, from Fort Saskatchewan, Alta., and Jennifer Sidey-Gibbons, 34, a mechanical engineer and Cambridge University lecturer from Calgary.

“This is a big moment for humanity,” Champagne said Sunday after touring the Johnson Space Center in Houston, where he had a chance to chat with astronauts and visit Mission Control.

“This time Canada is writing history with our American friends ⦠it’s not even a new chapter. For me, it’s almost like a new book in space exploration.”

On the ground, Canada is engaged in a variety of cutting-edge research endeavours that will be of mutual benefit to Artemis, Champagne said.

In the “Deep Space Food Challenge,” launched in 2021, participants must develop ways to produce food in the harsh environments of deep space with few resources — think Matt Damon in “The Martian” — that will one day be necessary to sustain life.


Those challenges will only become more difficult as Artemis moves into its later stages, which include a long-term presence on the moon and ultimately voyaging to Mars.

“As one scientist only recently said, ‘The science of today is the economy of tomorrow,”’ Champagne said. “By increasing the complexity, that’s why we push the boundaries of science and innovation.”

Former astronaut and now-retired Quebec MP Marc Garneau, who back in 1984 became the first Canadian to ever go to space, said Biden’s speech left him with a “flashback” to another seminal moment in Canada-U.S. space relations.

Garneau’s maiden Space Shuttle flight was still three weeks away when he got an invitation to go to the White House along with two of his fellow crew members to meet the U.S. president.


As it turned out, he wasn’t the only Canadian meeting Ronald Reagan that day in the Oval Office. So too was Canada’s newly elected prime minister, Brian Mulroney, whose friendship with Reagan has since become the stuff of bilateral lore.

“We were invited to the White House — to the Oval Office, in fact — and met with the president and the new prime minister as they met for the first time,” Garneau recalled.

“That was an example of space being one of those things that exemplifies how Canada and the United States have been really, really good partners ⦠and how close our two countries really are with respect to space, and in other ways as well.”

Canada and NASA have been working together since the early 1960s and the headiest days of the U.S. space program, when Canada’s first satellite was launched on a U.S. rocket, Garneau said.

The Canadarm, that iconic, Maple Leaf-emblazoned fixture of the shuttle program, would later cement Canada’s status as a country the U.S. could count on.

“It’s built on the fact that Canada has always been a reliable, dependable partner that has delivered what it said it would do,” Garneau said.

“We have an incredibly good reputation from that point of view.”
 

spaminator

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Moon mission could boost Canadian health-care, climate efforts: Artemis II astronauts
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Dylan Robertson
Published Apr 25, 2023 • Last updated 1 day ago • 5 minute read

OTTAWA — Four astronauts selected to orbit the moon say the Artemis II mission can help inform how Canada responds to food insecurity, health-care needs and climate adaptation in the Arctic.


“How do we actually get eight billion people to row in the same direction and work on these problems? Because these are global problems,” said Jeremy Hansen, a Canadian colonel who will join three Americans in space.


“We can do great things together. We can do better as a human race. And here’s one small example,” he said alongside his crewmates in a Tuesday interview with The Canadian Press.

The mission planned for November 2024 is part of an ambitious plan to establish a long-term presence on the moon, and has NASA hoping Ottawa further boosts its spending on outer space.

The 10-day mission involves slingshotting into deep space for a figure-8 manoeuvre around the dark side of the moon.

If it is successful, Artemis II will mark the first time any human has ventured so far from Earth.


It will also set the stage for another mission planned for 2025 that will include driving a vehicle on the moon’s surface and seeking materials that could be converted into fuel and building supplies.

Mission pilot Victor Glover said the diversity of the small but highly specialized crew, which includes people of two nationalities, a woman and a person of colour, is a deliberate message to the planet.

“This is an example of what we can accomplish, the challenges we can overcome,” said Glover, who is Black.

“When we bring our diverse skill sets together, our countries together, we can do what the president said in your Parliament: ‘big things,”‘ he said, referencing President Joe Biden’s address to the House of Commons last month.


NASA’s audit branch estimates the Artemis program, which successfully sent an unmanned spacecraft around the moon last November and plans to have astronauts stay a week on the moon, will cost US$93 billion through fall 2025.

The ultimate later ambition is to install a manned outpost in orbit around the moon.

The crew noted that beyond the positive message of co-operation that the mission sends, there is a range of what Glover called “inspirational returns” and economic spinoffs.

Hansen argued the scientific research involved in the mission is particularly important for Canadians, as it will gather reams of data relevant to climate change and test out new ways of coping with remote environments.

He said there is “significant overlap” between having a sustained presence on the lunar surface, and eventually Mars, and dealing with some of the problems back on Earth.


“If we can’t grow food in the Canadian Arctic, how can we expect to do it on the moon and on Mars?” he said.

“These are areas that we can use the inspiration of space to help us bring real benefits to Canadians on the planet and society in general.”

The Canadian Space Agency also sees the mission as a way to advance tech jobs in commercial space robotics, building on the success of the Canadarm series of robotic arms.

Hansen said Canadians must recognize “opportunity lies ahead for us, to leverage a program like Artemis.”

For decades now, the International Space Station has been the only destination for astronauts. Artemis II will be the first crewed mission to the moon since the final Apollo mission took flight in 1972, and the four astronauts will be the first humans to use the Orion spacecraft, which re-entered Earth last December after orbiting the moon.


“We don’t have a training plan that’s laid out, that’s tried and true and has been done a bunch of times,” said astronaut Christina Hammock Koch.

“We get to invent it as we go, and it’s incumbent upon us to make it the best that it can be for the future Artemis flyers.”

Koch knows a thing or two about what it is like to adjust to being off the planet, having spent 328 days in the space station.

“Down can feel like up. You can literally feel like you’re moving when you’re not,” she said of the first 48 hours in space.

Yet during that period, her team will be tasked with “some of the most critical mission operations,” such as steering the vehicle and measuring its proximity to other objects, she said.

Mission commander Reid Wiseman said the diversity of the mission was a result of choosing who was best for each role.



“They’ve got outstanding backgrounds and great skills,” he said.

Still, the agency’s head, Bill Nelson, made the point of saying a woman will be among those chosen to walk the surface of the moon when Artemis III gets underway, likely in 2025.

But he did not say whether the first non-American to step onto the moon will be a Canadian.

“It will be the first woman and the next man to walk on the moon. Any allocation of those assignments is way too early to talk about,” said Nelson, a former astronaut.

He noted that the European Space Agency and Japanese Space Agency have both made “substantial investment” in joint programs with NASA.

“Each has flown multiple astronauts with us. Each is increasing their budgets for their space program, and I think we will see a parallel track with Canada as well,” Nelson said.



“Now, with Jeremy going to the moon, I think Canada’s participation is going to increase.”

For now, Ottawa has been basking in the limelight, with MPs giving the astronauts a standing ovation Tuesday when they appeared in the gallery of the House of Commons, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met with the four.

Hansen, the only astronaut on the mission who hasn’t already been to space, said he wants to show that it’s possible to go from being raised on a farm in rural Ontario to reaching the dark side of the moon.

“My message to Canadians is: ‘Don’t keep yourself small.’ I think we have a habit of doing that,” he said. “There’s so much genius across the country to contribute to the world.”

He said he’s excited by what the Artemis missions plan to discover, from monitoring climate conditions to seeing whether the regolith that coats the moon could be used to create structures that resemble concrete buildings.

“We’re going to have humans walking on the moon, we’re going have humans going to Mars and we’re going to be solving real huge problems on the planet,” Hansen said.

“This is not the pinnacle. This is just one small step.”
 

Tecumsehsbones

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“How do we actually get eight billion people to row in the same direction and work on these problems? Because these are global problems,” said Jeremy Hansen, a Canadian colonel who will join three Americans in space.
Well, first you need to get your head around the fact that the launch vehicles will not be oar-powered, you thick Canadian fuck.
 

spaminator

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Astronauts get first look at the spacecraft that will fly them around the moon
Author of the article:Associated Press
Associated Press
Marcia Dunn
Published Aug 08, 2023 • 2 minute read
The crew of Artemis II (left to right) U.S. astronauts Reid Wiseman, commander; Victor Glover, pilot; Christina Hammock Koch, mission specialist; and Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen, mission specialist, speak in front of the Artemis II crew module (rear) inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Aug. 8, 2023.
The crew of Artemis II (left to right) U.S. astronauts Reid Wiseman, commander; Victor Glover, pilot; Christina Hammock Koch, mission specialist; and Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen, mission specialist, speak in front of the Artemis II crew module (rear) inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Aug. 8, 2023. PHOTO BY CHANDAN KHANNA /AFP via Getty Images
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The four astronauts assigned to fly around the moon in another year got their first look at their spacecraft, as NASA warned Tuesday there could be more delays.


They peeked into their unfinished Orion capsule, red “Remove Before Flight” tags still dangling from it, and came away impressed.


“Nothing else looks like that … that’s what gave me shivers,” astronaut Christina Koch told reporters.

The U.S.-Canadian crew inspected the capsule during a visit to Kennedy Space Center late Monday and Tuesday. NASA plans to send the four around the moon and back late next year.

Investigations into the capsule’s heat shield, however, could delay this first lunar trip by astronauts in more than half a century. Last year’s test flight around the moon, with no one on board, resulted in unexpected charring and loss of material from the heat shield at the bottom of the capsule. The heat shield is meant to protect the capsule against the extreme heat of reentry.


The following mission of the Artemis program — a moon landing _ faces even more hurdles and may slip from late 2025 into 2026. The main issue remains SpaceX’s Starship, the rocketship that will carry two NASA astronauts from lunar orbit down to the south pole.

With only one test flight so far for Starship — resulting in an explosion a few minutes after liftoff in April — NASA is concerned whether Elon Musk’s SpaceX can pull everything off in time. The space agency will not commit to a moon landing using Starship, until SpaceX conducts multiple Starship orbital flights, sets up a refueling depot around Earth and completes a moon-landing dress rehearsal.

NASA’s exploration systems development chief, Jim Free, said the space agency should have a clearer handle on where things stand this fall.


“It’s clear that we have a lot of work to do,” said astronaut Victor Glover.

Despite such lingering worries, the mood inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building — named after the first man to step onto the moon — was upbeat Tuesday. The astronauts _ assigned to the mission amid hoopla last spring — were asked what it felt like to be in such hallowed grounds.

Crew commander Reid Wiseman said it wasn’t their own trip but the next moon landing that is “going to carry the dream for us.”

More than 200 rock concert speakers were stacked around the capsule for an acoustic test later this week. NASA planned to blast the place with up to 143 decibels of rumbling noise — imitating the thunderous sounds of liftoff — to see how well the windows, wiring and other parts of the capsule hold up.

Gesturing toward the capsule, Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen said: “That’s real … It’s not a dream.”
artemis-scaled-e1691544352124[1].jpg
 

spaminator

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Q+A: Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen on his moon mission
London, Ont-born Hansen will be doing a lap around the moon before flying back to earth on the Artemis 2 mission.

Author of the article:Brian Williams • Local Journalism Initiative reporter
Published Dec 31, 2023 • Last updated 9 hours ago • 4 minute read

Jeremy Hansen, who grew up on a farm near Ailsa Craig and in Ingersoll, will be the first Canadian to go into deep space – flying around the moon as early as 2024 on NASA’s Artemis II mission. It will be the first crewed test of a new spacecraft and heavy-lift rocket, designed to take astronauts back to the moon for the first time since 1972 and pave the way for Mars exploration. LFP’s Brian Williams spoke to the Ingersoll District collegiate institute alum, from Houston, about the mission ahead.


Q: Is there anything about being a former farm kid that helps you as an astronaut?
A: I feel it really (has). I learned a few important things on the farm. One of them is the value of hard work. You’re going to have to work hard, physically hard. That was a valuable skill that I still use today. And when you grow up on a farm, you really do learn that sort of a sense of team. . . . Everybody comes together and helps.

Q: Have you talked about your mission to Chris Hadfield, the retired astronaut from the Sarnia area?
A: He’s been a mentor for me. I talk to him on a fairly regular basis. Astronauts have to absorb a lot of information, but then you sort of have to boil it down into what really matters. Chris has this technique where he makes these little one-pagers for different systems, so he can quickly remind himself of the most important things. (Things) that can kill you, or cause you to fail your objectives. That’s a little tip I picked up from Chris.


Q: What is the crew’s goal for the Artemis II mission?
A: Our goal is to (ensure) the capsule (is satisfactory) for the follow-on missions. When you have a campaign and missions that get more and more complex with each mission we fly, just like the Apollo missions did, we try to take bite-sized chunks – proving out the system, testing them, buying down risk.

Q: What’s the biggest thing people wouldn’t know about training to go into space?
A: How diverse (it) is, like how many different things you touch as an astronaut getting ready to go to space. It’s extraordinary. And it’s really represented by the size of the team that makes this possible. When you look at how many details have to go right, for four humans to leave Earth and get thrown around the moon and come back and actually hit the Earth on the way back . . . it takes a huge team of people who are experts in their fields to manage all that. There’s a lot of trust involved.


Q: Anything you’re looking forward to most about the mission?
A: The one that sort of really (stands out) – and I can’t dismiss it – is seeing the Earth in all its glory, hanging in the vacuum of space. For me, it’s going to reinforce a fundamental truth that I already believe, and that is that every single human on the planet has equal value.

Q: Any thoughts about things that could go wrong?
A: We spend a lot of our days talking about the things that could go wrong. We can land in many different places on the Earth, you know — vast portions of the Pacific Ocean or the Atlantic. We talk about being all the way toward the moon and losing the cooling systems in the capsule that would result in loss of crew. There’s a long list of ways that you could die. But, what’s good about that is that we do talk about them, we do think about them. And for all the really critical ones, we always try to have at least one backup system. One backup way to survive, and that’s how we keep the risk mitigated.


Q: How did being an aquanaut – you spent seven days in 2014 living and working in an undersea lab off the Florida coast – help prepare you for your upcoming mission?
A: An intention of the (astronaut training) is looking for experiences like the (underwater) NEEMO mission and habitats, because what we want to do is have situations on Earth before we send astronauts to space, managing real risks. A lot of our training is done in simulators, but simulators don’t kill you. Underwater missions are very realistic training opportunities for us because of the actual risk we’re managing. I’ve been a scuba diver for a long time, but it is completely different to live on the ocean floor.

Q: What are some of your personal interests?

A: My biggest interest is probably my family. I’m a husband and a father. I don’t have a ton of free time, but the free time I do have, I like to dedicate it to my family. It’s probably my biggest hobby, if you will. And I’m pretty fortunate in that most of the things that I love to do are actually a part of my job. I really do love to fly, but If I didn’t fly for my job, I would want to fly as a hobby.

Q: You’ve had a career most people can only dream of – fighter pilot, aquanaut, astronaut. What’s next after Artemis II?
A: I’ll still be very passionate about space exploration. I don’t know how I’ll be asked to contribute, but I care deeply about continuing to move Canada towards a future where we’re contributing our genius in the areas of leveraging space to bring value to not just Canadians, but others around the planet as well.

bwilliams@postmedia.com

@BrianWatLFPress
 
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NASA delays Artemis II moon mission that includes Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Published Jan 09, 2024 • 1 minute read

NASA says it will be delaying the Artemis II moon mission that includes Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen, initially scheduled for November of this year.


The U.S. space agency provided an update today on the timeline for the upcoming mission around the moon and said it will be pushed back to September 2025 due to a number of technical issues and to allow more preparation time.


A subsequent mission, Artemis III, which will land astronauts on the moon for the first time in more than 50 years, has been delayed until at least September 2026.

Hansen’s maiden space voyage alongside veteran NASA astronauts Reid Wiseman, Victor Glover and Christina Koch was to be the first crewed flight of the Orion capsule and the first mission to the moon since the last Apollo mission in 1972.

The Artemis II mission involves a lunar flyby, performing a figure-eight manoeuvre around the far side of the moon before returning to Earth.

Another Canadian astronaut, Jenni Gibbons, was appointed in November as backup to Hansen.