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Artemis: NASA to announce sites on Moon

  • Category
    Ecology and Environment
  • Published
    27th Aug, 2022

Context

NASA has recently announced the 13 potential landing sites for its upcoming Artemis III mission, under which the US space agency will send the first woman and person of colour to the Moon.

About

  • NASA has identified the following 13 regions as candidates for the landing of its Artemis 3 lunar mission:
  • Faustini Rim A
  • Peak Near Shackleton
  • Connecting Ridge
  • Connecting Ridge Extension
  • de Gerlache Rim 1
  • de Gerlache Rim 2
  • de Gerlache-Kocher Massif
  • Haworth
  • Malapert Massif
  • Leibnitz Beta Plateau
  • Nobile Rim 1
  • Nobile Rim 2
  • Amundsen Rim

 

  • Each region is located within six degrees of the latitude of the lunar South Pole, and this proximity makes these sites scientifically significant.
  • This is because the lunar South Pole has permanently shadowed regions rich in resources; it also has terrain unexplored by humans.

Why is sunlight critical for the mission?

  • Sunlight is required for a long-term stay on the Moon as it provides a power source and minimises temperature variations.
  • Within each candidate site, there are areas with continuous access to sunlight throughout a period of six-and-a-half days, which is the planned duration of Artemis III.

What is the Artemis mission?

  • Next generation of lunar exploration-NASA’s Artemis mission is touted as the next generation of lunar exploration, and is named after the twin sister of Apollo from Greek mythology.
  • Uncrewed space mission-It is an uncrewed space mission where the spacecraft will launch on SLS — the most powerful rocket in the world — and travel 2,80,000 miles from the earth for over four to six weeks during the course of the mission.
  • Land humans on the moon- With the Artemis programme, NASA aims to land humans on the moon by 2024, and it also plans to land the first woman and first person of colour on the moon.

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