Status: 11/22/2022 02:12 AM
The Orion capsule came very close to the Moon for the first time – it flew only 130 kilometers. It aims to collect data on the first manned lunar missions planned for more than 50 years.
About a week after its launch, the Orion space capsule approached the Moon for the first time. And the US space agency “NASA” said that on its way to orbit around the Earth’s satellite, it circled the back of the moon and reached a distance of 130 kilometers from it. With orbit, it must gain momentum to enter its lunar orbit.
30 minutes of radio silence
While the capsule was behind the Moon, there was no radio communication with the Houston Control Center. For about 30 minutes, the engineers there did not know if the primary engine had fired as planned. “This is one of those days that has been thought about and talked about for far too long,” said flight director Zeb Scoville while waiting.
When the capsule resurfaced, the cameras on board sent back an image of Earth – a blue dot shrouded in darkness. At that point, the capsule accelerated to more than 8,000 kilometers per hour, according to NASA. “Our pale blue dot and its population of eight billion are now beginning to emerge,” said Sandra Jones, a spokeswoman for the Center for Control.
Planned hydroplaning in the Pacific Ocean
Orion should stay around the moon for about three weeks. It is “inhabited” by three test dummies who are supposed to collect data for the next step – to return people to the moon. Orion is scheduled to land in the Pacific Ocean in December.
Your flight is part of the “Artemis” lunar mission, which so far has not been auspicious: after delays and high costs in development and construction, the test launch had to be postponed several times.
With the program, named after the Greek goddess of the moon, American astronauts are expected to land on the moon again in the coming years, including a woman and a non-white person for the first time.