A NASA official said humans could stay on the moon for extended periods of time this decade. NASA on the BBC.
Howard Hu, who leads the Orion lunar rover program, said the habitats will be needed to support science missions.
The launch of NASA’s Artemis rocket is a historic day
He also said Wednesday’s launch of the Artemis rocket carrying Orion was “aHistory day for human spaceflight.
The missile Artemis The 100 Meter was launched from the Kennedy Space Center as part of NASA’s mission to return astronauts to Earth’s satellite.
On top of the rocket is the Orion spacecraft which, for this first mission, is unmanned but equipped with a human dummy that records the effects of flight on the human body.
Hu Jintao said that watching the missile take off was “an incredible feeling” and “a dream come true.”
NASA: We’ll go back to the moon
“It’s the first step we’re taking in long-term deep space exploration, not just for the United States but for the world,” he said.
“And I think this is a historic day for NASA, but it’s also a historic day for all the people who love human spaceflight and deep space exploration.”
“We’re going to go back to the moon, we’re working on a sustainable program, and this is the vehicle that will carry the people who are going to take us back to the moon,” he said.
He then explained that if the current Artemis flight was successful, the crew would be next, followed by a third flight where astronauts would land on the Moon again for the first time since Apollo 17 50 years earlier in December 1972.
The plan is for people to live on the moon “this decade.”
He told the BBC that the current mission is progressing well, with all systems working and the mission team preparing for the next Orion launch at noon on Monday to put the spacecraft into orbit far from the moon.
One of the most important phases of the Artemis I mission is the safe return of the Orion module to Earth. It will re-enter the planet’s atmosphere at a speed of 38,000 km / h, or 32 times the speed of sound, and the shield at its bottom will be exposed to temperatures approaching 3,000 degrees Celsius.
Once Artemis components and systems have been tested and proven safe, the plan is for humans to live on the Moon “this decade.”
Hu added that one of the main reasons for returning to the Moon is to see if water is present at the south pole of the satellite, because that could turn into providing fuel for vehicles going deeper into space – to Mars, for example.
“We will send people to the roof and they will live on this roof and do science,” Hu Jintao said.
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