The Artemis 1 mission is scheduled to start on August 29th. The US space agency Nasa recently confirmed the launch of its water-reconnaissance Cube (CubeSat) satellite Lunar IceCub, along with a host of other miniaturized satellites, as part of the Artemis-1 mission. Artemis 1 will make a four-mile journey from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on August 18 as part of the Satellite Launch System (SLS) rocket, eventually rolling on an unmanned lunar journey by August 29.
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Artemis 1 marks the first-ever launch of the SLS rocket, which has been integrated into the satellites. The Lunar IceCube cubeSat, which weighs just 31 pounds, will study the moon one at a time. Orbiting the moon, the Lunar IceCube will use a spectrometer to study lunar ice, the space agency says on its website. While previous NASA expeditions have discovered the presence of water ice on the Moon, the Artemis 1 mission will continue to study the dynamics of water ice on the celestial body to understand how it changes and interacts with its environment, Nasa said in a statement .
According to NASA, “Scientists are interested in how water is absorbed into and released from the regolith – the rocky and dusty surface of the moon.” This would not only expand NASA’s understanding of the elements on the moon, but also the possibility open up to assess the atmosphere surrounding the moon – the exosphere, a very thin, atmosphere-like volume surrounding the moon.
The attempt would be to test the viability of these elements as possible resources for future missions. With the many satellites on board Artemis 1, Nasa would try to expand its investigation into different elements, resources, atmospheric dynamics of water ice on the moon and finally the red planet Mars.
Astronauts last explored the moon in 1972. The first of the 12 moonwalkers, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, walked the dusty gray surface on July 20, 1969 while Michael Collins orbited the moon AP report explained. The report explains, “The 30-story Space Launch System rocket and attached Orion capsule are currently in the Kennedy Space Center hangar after repairs were completed from last month’s countdown test. During NASA’s repeated launch trials, fuel leaks and other technical issues arose on the pad.”
At 98 meters, the rocket and the Orion capsule are taller than the Statue of Liberty. If Orion’s journey to the moon and back goes well, astronauts could board for a lunar orbit in 2023 and actually land in 2025, the report adds.
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