Artemis - the NASA mission

Artemis II

Back to the Moon, Steve! :moon:

Today (3 April) NASA announced the four astronauts who will crew the Artemis II mission on a journey to the Moon and back.

The crew will comprise (L-R) of NASA astronauts Christina Koch, Victor Glover, Reid Wiseman (bottom) and CSA astronaut Jeremy Hansen.


Launch is scheduled for November 2024.


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In this news article, I find a disconcerting "wokeism" written within the first sentence. Why could not the writer have noted Victor J Glover Jr. having a Bachelors of Science and THREE Masters degrees ????
Now there's a guy who knows what he's doing!! Content of character people!

OK, the Moon it is...

Not many people know this, but only ONE SCIENTIST has ever been to the Moon. The rest had a background as US Aircraft pilots.

It was Harrison H. Schmitt. A geologist who was deeply interested in the grey Moon rocks, and set the weight record for collecting them.

In fact I am surprised the LEM could even take off.

Harrison H Schmitt.jpg

He held quaint and dated views on Climate Change, but at least was not a Flat Earther:

Notably took this picture of The Earth from Apollo 17:

The Blue Marble.jpg

The Blue Marble... which must have annoyed the Flat Earthers. They doubtless claimed it was a FAKE and that the Apollo Missions never happened! :rolleyes:


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In this news article, I find a disconcerting "wokeism" written within the first sentence. Why could not the writer have noted Victor J Glover Jr. having a Bachelors of Science and THREE Masters degrees ????
Now there's a guy who knows what he's doing!! Content of character people!


Academics are held in disdain in the US. An ignorant American is a good American. University education in particular is frowned on by many Americans. "Woke" is a vague perjorative slung at "liberals" and "smart people."

After my career crashed and burned in 2008 I stopped listing all my academic credentials. When my boss found out I had more academic background than he did he was perturbed and offended. His angle was "why are you working for me?" and I asked myself the same question. Such is life.
Technology has significantly impacted our lives and transformed the way we interact with the world around us. One of the significant technological advancements that have emerged in recent years is Rei Reply Alternative, which refers to the use of nanotechnology to create new materials and devices with unique properties. it has a wide range of applications, from medicine and electronics to energy and environmental science. For instance, in the field of medicine, it is being used to develop nanorobots that can deliver drugs to specific parts of the body and even repair damaged tissues. In electronics, it is being used to develop nanoscale transistors that can make computers even smaller and more powerful. Moreover, in energy and environmental science, it is being used to develop more efficient solar cells and water purification systems. As we continue to explore and develop the potential of it, we can expect to see even more significant advancements in various fields, leading to a more sustainable and innovative future.
The European Space Agency (ESA) successfully launched its “Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer”, or JUICE, today.

In December '34, the probe will end its mission by going into orbit around Ganymede, the planetary sized moon of Jupiter.

Ganymede is thought to have a 60 mile deep salt water ocean buried under a 95 mile thick crust composed mostly of ice.


Now, the exciting thing is that, just like a squash ball warms up when squashed, Ganymede's ocean is being heated as the moon is squashed by Jupiter's enormous gravitational field.

Result, the possibility of the existence of elementary forms of life in Ganymede's ocean. I hope, but doubt, I'll still be around to see evidence of that!
I can feel some Mathematics in the offing here:

Orbit and Rotation

Ganymede orbits Jupiter at a distance of 665,000 miles (1,070,000 kilometers), making it third in distance from Jupiter among the Galilean satellites:

Io: 262,200 miles (422,000 kilometers)
Europa: 417,000 miles (671,000 kilometers)
Ganymede: 665,000 miles (1,070,000 kilometers)
Callisto: 1,170,000 miles (1,883,000 kilometers)

Kepler's Laws:

The orbit of a planet is an ellipse with the Sun at one of the two foci.
A line segment joining a planet and the Sun sweeps out equal areas during equal intervals of time.
The square of a planet's orbital period is proportional to the cube of the length of the semi-major axis of its orbit.

All 4 moons are tidally locked to Jupiter, and have significant eccentricity. In 1.5Bn years, it is estimated the Callisto will join in the extraordinary 1:2:4 orbital resonance to create a 1:2:4:8 resonance!

I have been investigating Mercury recently. Weird things abound with it. A 2:3 rotation/orbital resonance and very high eccentricity:
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A 2:3 rotation resonance and high eccentricity

Meaning that the planet Mercury rotates three times about its spin axis for every two orbits about the Sun.

The following link provides a series of animations showing what the Sun looks like from the point of view of an observer on Mercury:

Weird indeed!

EDIT: Note the effect of increasing eccentricity of the orbit and the longitude of the observer!
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Some Artemis news this week. NASA has awarded the contract to Blue Origin for a second lander design after Starship, so we are looking at Artemis 4 or 5 I think.

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$3.4Bn plus Jeff Bezos has put up another $3.4Bn for the privilege.

Moon looking nice tonight after sunset, here sandwiched between Mars and Venus:

Moon and Venus and Mars.jpg

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Another Astronomical treat.
A 45 Ton lunar lander??? Bezos is doing the Musk BS thing, a bad precedent, over-promising just to keep the funding rolling in... Since the public seems to have a non-existent memory capacity...when was Cybertruck promised, the Semi,...what about Hyperloop, "millions of self-driving cars to be freely used with Lyft, or Uber"...The "gift of gab" just keeps going.

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Thanks, Steve.

It seems that Blue Moon has been in development for several years:

"The larger variant of Blue Moon has been designed to land an ascent vehicle, and is a part of the integrated system chosen by NASA to return humans to the Moon."

Under NASA's contract, Blue Origin and its National Team partners, including Lockheed Martin, Draper, Boeing, Astrobotic, and Honeybee Robotics, will develop and fly both a lunar lander that can make a precision landing anywhere on the Moon’s surface and a cislunar transporter.


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It is well-known that "The Moon" is a dismally dull and grey moon. Nobody in their right mind would want to go there, IMO.

Except to test technologies for further missions.

My favourite is distant Saturn's moon Enceladus!

Enceladus by Cassini.jpg

Could I recommend this splendid free NASA download about planet Saturn and all its mysteries?

You will be gobsmacked by the images that the Cassini-Huygens probe sent us.

What would it be like to have 3 Moons?


Why does Mimas look like the Death Star?


Enquiring minds want to know. :cool:
NASA has developed a 'Cosmic Ray Gun' which they hope will help them better understand the risks of human exploration to the Moon, Mars and beyond.


During deep space missions, galactic cosmic rays could cause astronauts to suffer cognitive impairment, aka 'space brain'.

NASA's cosmic ray simulator is designed to target mice and rats to investigate the effects on the central nervous system.
Fresh on the shelf at Sainsbury's today was this book: "The Future of Geography" by Tim Marshall.

The author reveals how politics in space will change our world.

"Marshall reports on a political landscape in which the ‘Big Three’ of China, the USA and Russia are competing at the vanguard not just of exploration, but also exploitation and conquest."


The basic premise is that the country that takes control of the Moon and cislunar space will take control of the world.

As I implied earlier in this thread, the importance of NASA's Artemis mission should not be underestimated.