“The Artemis II crew represents thousands of people working tirelessly to bring us to the stars. This is their crew, this is our crew, this is humanity's crew.”
NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said on Monday as NASA and the Canadian Space Agency announced the names of four astronauts who will travel around the moon no sooner than late 2024.
apr 3, 2023
Why It Matters: The four astronauts will become the first in more than 50 years to go on a lunar mission as part of Artemis II – "the first crewed mission on NASA's path to establishing a long-term presence at the Moon for science and exploration," NASA explains. The astronauts will go on a 10-day mission around the moon, and include the first woman, first African American and first Canadian to travel on a lunar mission. If the Artemis II flight test is carried out successfully, NASA plans to send two astronauts to land on the moon for the first time since 1972 as part of the Artemis III mission. NASA hopes for these missions to eventually help set the stage for the exploration of Mars.
The Artemis II astronauts and their crew assignments:
- Reid Wiseman, a NASA astronaut who will serve as Commander. Artemis II will mark his second trip to space, where he has spent 165+ days and served on the International Space Station.
- Victor Glover, an African American NASA astronaut who will serve as pilot. This will be Glover's second trip to space, where he has spent 168 days. He has served on the International Space Station and completed four spacewalks.
- Christina Hammock Koch, a NASA astronaut who will serve as mission specialist 1. She has "set a record for the longest single spaceflight by a woman with a total of 328 days in space," and has served on the International Space Station (NASA).
- Jeremy Hansen, a Canadian Space Agency astronaut who will serve as mission specialist 2. Artemis II will mark the Canadian Armed Forces colonel and former fighter pilot's first trip to space. Hanson was the first Canadian to lead a NASA astronaut training class of both U.S. and Canadian astronaut candidates.
Nelson said the chosen astronauts each have “their own story, but, together, they represent our creed: E pluribus unum – out of many, one. Together, we are ushering in a new era of exploration for a new generation of star sailors and dreamers – the Artemis Generation.”
Did you know? Artemis is a mythological Greek goddess of the moon and twin sister of the god, Apollo, whom NASA's program that landed the first humans on the moon was named after.
NASA Names Astronauts to Next Moon Mission, First Crew Under Artemis (NASA)
NASA unveils the four astronauts who will fly on the Artemis 2 mission around the moon in 2023 (CNBC)
Watch the announcement of the Artemis II astronauts here!
Image Credit: NASA Astronauts via Twitter