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NASA intends to send astronauts to the moon in 2025 or 2026

Two American astronauts may land on the moon’s surface at the end of 2025 or the beginning of 2026 as part of the Artemis-3 mission, according to the head of the United States’ National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Bill Nelson, speaking at a House appropriations committee hearing.

“At the end of 2025 or the beginning of 2026, we’re sending a crew of four to lunar orbit. They will rendezvous with SpaceX’s landing module, and two of the four will be on the surface for a six-day mission,” he said, noting that a woman astronaut may become the first person to set foot on the moon during this landing.

Nelson reminded the committee that NASA recently announced the crew for the Artemis 2 mission. The team includes American astronauts Christina Koch, Victor Glover, and Reid Wiseman, as well as Canadian Jeremy Hansen. According to NASA’s plans, they will make a flight around the moon in November 2024, after which they will spend about a year preparing for the Artemis-3 mission.

In the spring of 2019, NASA announced the Artemis lunar program, which will consist of three stages. The first stage (Artemis 1) involves an unmanned flight of the Orion spacecraft mounted on the Space Launch System rocket around the moon and its return to Earth. The flight took place from November 16 to December 11, 2022. The second stage (Artemis 2) involves orbiting the natural satellite of Earth with a crew on board. In the third stage of the mission (Artemis 3), NASA plans to land astronauts on the moon and then send them to Mars in the mid-2030s.

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