NASA: ‘It’s an important moment’ for space agency
NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy will become the first American woman to walk on the moon next month when the agency’s Orion capsule takes off in a controlled descent to the surface of the moon.
Cassidy, who was a member of the crew of the Apollo 11 spacecraft that took off in 1969, was the first female to walk the lunar surface.
NASA has announced that it will also announce that two astronauts will join the Expedition 41 crew of astronauts that will explore the moon for the first time.
The space agency said Wednesday that the two astronauts from its crew of five, including Cassidy, will be joined by two more women.
NASA is also preparing to announce that it has selected a third astronaut for a mission to the moon, this time with two women.
The mission will be the third in a planned series of missions to the Moon.
Cassidy and astronaut Nicole Robinson, the first woman to fly on an unmanned capsule, will depart the International Space Station on a six-month mission on Oct. 7.
In the mission, which will be called the Dawn mission, the two will begin a two-week mission that will culminate with a lunar landing on the lunar side of the Moon on Oct, 25.
Robinson and Cassidy, both former members of the U.S. Air Force Reserve, have been selected for the mission after being interviewed by NASA’s human exploration and operations director.
It will be Cassidy’s first trip to the lunar poles.
Joint press secretary Joe Lockhart said in a statement that NASA is “working to confirm” the mission’s date.
The astronauts will stay in Earth orbit for about a week and then will return to Earth.
“This mission is a very significant milestone in our exploration of the solar system, and it is important that we do everything we can to ensure that all Americans are prepared for this moment,” Lockhart added.
A mission that has been shrouded in secrecy since the 1960s is now being revealed in public for the very first time, at least for the time being.
The Apollo missions were supposed to have been conducted in the shadows, with little public scrutiny of what was to come.
The first mission was conducted by a crew of six, including Apollo 11 astronauts Aldrin and Buzz Aldrin, who became the first humans to walk to the center of the Earth.
They were part of the first Apollo 11 mission in 1969.
NASA began using a remote-controlled vehicle to conduct the mission in 1971 and later, in the 1980s, the spacecraft was brought into the spacecraft bay of the International Launch System rocket and then flown to the station.
The two spacecraft have been in the shuttle fleet since 1996.
But NASA has recently made some progress with unmanned spacecraft in space.
The agency launched a trio of unmanned Orion capsules in 2010 and has two more in development, each slated to be launched by 2019.
NASA is now preparing to send one of the capsules to the space station and the other to the International Airport in Houston, Texas.
(AP Photo/NASA, Justin Sullivan)NASA also announced that a second unmanned Orion capsule will be launched in 2019 and then land on the station in 2021.
The capsule, which is expected to carry astronauts on a mission that could last five years, is expected later this year.
While the first manned mission to Mars was made in 1965, the mission of the next manned mission is still far off.
In 2021, the agency is expected try and send humans to Mars by the end of the decade, although the timetable is uncertain.