The passengers who will travel in Artemis 2’s lunar orbit have finally been given official names by NASA.

The US will be represented by Commander Reid Wiseman, Victor Glover, and Christina Hammock Koch, while Jeremy Hansen of the Canadian Space Agency will travel for his nation. The crew will spend up to 21 days in an Orion spacecraft, which will circle the Earth for 42 hours before traveling to the Moon and splashing down in the Pacific.

For being a female astronaut who spent the most time in space, Hammock Koch is best recognized. Meanwhile, Wiseman, a Navy aviator, participated in the F-35 Lightning II program as a test pilot. Glover contributed to the first actual Crew Dragon flight in 2021, making history in the process. One of the four Canadian astronauts currently serving is combat pilot Hansen.

Related: NASA Publishes A Thorough Map Of The Impending Eclipses

The launch of Artemis 2 in November 2024, assuming everything goes according to plan, will mark the return of people to the Moon for the first time since Apollo 17 in 1972. In November of last year, Artemis 1, an unmanned lunar flyby mission, was launched. Its approximately 26-day journey broke an Apollo flight record. It won’t be until Artemis 3’s planned launch in December 2025 that humans set foot on the Moon. For the actual landing on that flight, a Starship variant from SpaceX will be used.

Artemis has recently received progressively more attention from NASA. The spacesuit for the Artemis 3 landing was revealed in March. The flexible and more accommodating prototype created by Axiom Space allows astronauts to kneel and perform other motions.

The choosing of the crew takes place as NASA seems to have recovered from the problems that beset its Space Launch System (SLS) rocket, including engine problems, fuel leaks, Hurricane Ian, and Tropical Storm Nicole. Having said that, the agency’s initial goal was a 2024 Artemis lunar arrival. The current timeline assumes there won’t be any major technical obstacles, but given SpaceX’s ongoing Starship problems (it has yet to perform an orbital flight test) and the inherent difficulties of landing people on the Moon, there are no assurances of that.


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