Front Page: Europe Delivers Module For First Astronaut Mission To The Moon

dWeb.News Article from Daniel Webster dWeb.News

dWeb.News Article from Daniel Webster dWeb.News
Science & Exploration

13/10/2021 488 views 20 likes

The second European Service Module for NASA’s Orion spacecraft is on its way to USA. This is the last stopover in Earth before the made-in-Europe spacecraft takes the first astronauts to the Moon on Artemis II.

An Antonov aircraft flew the module across the Atlantic this morning in a specially-built container from Bremen, Germany. The second European Service Module (ESM-2), which is the European Service Module for Europe, will be connected to crew module upon arrival at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. They form the Orion spacecraft.

Take-off for the Moon

The service module is a critical element for Orion – it provides propulsion, power and thermal control and will supply astronauts with water and oxygen.

With parts made in ten countries in Europe, there is one element that returns to American soil after testing in Germany: the service module’s main engine is a refurbished engine from Space Shuttle Atlantis that will steer the spacecraft on its way to the Moon.

Extensive testing awaits before integration with the launcher. Artemis II will be the first crewed mission to the Moon since the Apollo 17 mission in 1972.

We are going

“This is another big step forward to the Moon for ESA. Orion will carry our astronauts to the lunar Gateway. We are currently working to get ESA astronauts on board Orion, and we will keep our eyes on Mars as the goal of huma exploration.” says David Parker, ESA director of human-robot exploration.

Putting the pieces together

European industry is committed to deliver one service module per year. Philippe Deloo is the ESA’s ESM project Manager. He says, “The cooperation between ESA & NASA is going beyond – we’re a truly reliable partner.”

ESA is delivering up to six modules to NASA, with three more currently under negotiation for the lunar Gateway. ESA’s prime contractor is Airbus for the construction of the six first service modules.

Full Moon schedule

The Kennedy Space Center is humming with lunar activity this week. Three Orion spacecraft from Orion will be present at different stages of integration and assembly for the first time.

The Space Launch System rocket will carry the first Orion spacecraft. This is part of its final preparations for Artemis I, an uncrewed mission. The European Service Module will take the spacecraft more than 64 000 km beyond the Moon in a test flight to demonstrate its capabilities.

Loading ESM-2

“Agencies, industry and teams from different continents are working around the clock in a tremendous international effort to take this complex spacecraft to the launch pad,” said Cathy Koerner, NASA Orion programme manager, during a press event held by Airbus last week.

Two new arrivals mark the lunar weeks on site: ESM-2, the main pressure vessel for Artemis III. This will see the first woman and the next man set foot on the Moon. In Europe, the third European Service module is in the beginning of its integration phase. Here equipment dummies and brackets will be added to the structure.

More on Orion

Check our blog and this media kit to learn more about Orion, Artemis, the journey to the Moon and how European hardware and know-how is making it happen.

More dWeb.News Space News https://dweb.news/category/space-news/

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