We now know what the next NASA astronauts will wear on the moon.
NASA announced on Wednesday (September 7) that it has chosen Houston Axiom Space to build the moon space suits For Artemis 3, a mission that aims to land astronauts near the south pole of the moon in 2025 or 2026.
Artemis 3 He will make the first manned moon landing since the final Apollo A trip in 1972, if all goes according to plan. NASA intends to continue to return with Artemis programEstablishment of an inhabited outpost on Earth’s nearest neighbors by the end of 2020.
Related: The evolution of the space suit
“NASA is proud to partner with the commercial industry on this historic mission that will begin the United States to build a lasting presence on the surface.” the moonLara Kearney, director of the NASA Extravehicular Activity and Surface Human Mobility Program, He said in a statement (Opens in a new tab).
“What we learn about Artemis 3 and future missions on and around the moon will pave the way for missions MarsKearney added. Spacesuits enable us to literally take the next step. “
In June of this year, NASA announced They have selected Axiom and a team led by Collins Aerospace to develop and build spacesuits for future missions to the Moon and International Space Station. The two private teams were awarded the right to compete for a total of $3.5 billion through 2034.
This money will be disbursed through a series of ‘task orders’. The newly announced Artemis 3 award is one such order, with a base value of $228.5 million.
“Using more than 50 years of experience in spacesuits, NASA has defined the technical and safety requirements for the next generation of spacesuits. Axiom Space will be responsible for the design, development, qualification, certification and production of its spacesuits and support equipment that meet these requirements,” agency officials said. In a statement on Wednesday, “Major Agency Requirements for Artemis 3.”
They added that “NASA experts will retain the authority to train astronauts, plan missions, and approve service systems.” “Axiom Space will be required to test the suits in a space-like environment before Artemis 3.”
NASA officials said a future mission order would cover subsequent manned Artemis missions.
NASA has not yet launched any Artemis missions, but that should change soon. The agency is preparing for the next launch attempt of Artemis 1which will send the agency’s Orion capsule on an uncrewed flight to lunar orbit and back.
NASA attempted to launch Artemis 1 on August 29 and September 3 but I cleared both attempts due to technical problems. The agency has not yet announced a target date for the next attempt.
Mike Wall is the author of “Abroad (Opens in a new tab)Book (Great Grand Publishing House, 2018; illustrated by Carl Tate), a book on the search for extraterrestrials. Follow him on Twitter Tweet embed (Opens in a new tab). Follow us on Twitter Tweet embed (Opens in a new tab) or on Facebook (Opens in a new tab).