space This new capsule is currently traveling more than 64,000 kilometers from the Moon
NASA's Orion capsule is now circling the Moon in an orbit spanning tens of thousands of miles — /AP/SIPA
NASA's Orion spacecraft has placed itself in distant lunar orbit on Friday, the tenth day of the Artemis 1 mission, reported the US Space Agency on Friday. “During this lunar orbit, flight controllers will be monitoring critical (Orion) systems and performing checks related to the deep space environment,” the agency in a blog post.
This new capsule, which should take astronauts to the Moon in the coming years – the first to tread the surface since the last Apollo mission in 1972 -, thus currently traveling to; more than 64,000 kilometers from the Moon. At this distance, it will take no less than six days to travel half a lunar orbit, before beginning the return journey to Earth.
Landing scheduled for December 11
This first test flight of the Orion spacecraft, without a crew at edge, must be used to make sure the vehicle is safe. Landing in the Pacific Ocean is scheduled for December 11, after just over 25 days of flight.
On the success of this mission depends the future of Arté ;mis 2, which will take astronauts around the Moon without landing, then Artemis 3, which will finally mark the return of humans to the lunar surface. These missions are officially scheduled to take place in 2024 and 2025, respectively.