NASA has all the plans ready to reach the moon by the early part of the year of 2019. This will be totally fulfilled when the agency awards the very first contract meant for lunar “Gateway Program”. The name for this mission is given as “The Lunar Orbital Platform- Gateway” is said to be the stage which is being developed for the purpose of studying the moon as well as the deep space environment. Finally, the idea is that it will function as a way station which will help the astronauts to go to Mars and come back.
The mission in details
NASA will be spending a huge amount for the development of the power and propulsion requirements within the early phase of next year. This spending will be followed by habitation components. This confirmation was given by the Associate Administrator William Gerstenmaier at the Colorado Springs, Colorado. These will probably be launched in a sequential order, starting from 2022.
The Space Agency has plans to position the station within the orbit of the moon by 2025. Mr. Gerstenmaier, who is a highly experienced person in the field of operations and human exploration. He further added that a team of four astronauts will go to the moon on a 30-day mission. This platform will also be used for the purpose of yet another landing of the humans on the moon. This will in turn help to find out whether water accumulated near the surface can be utilized to build up propellant for the purpose of deep-space missions. Moreover, the moon’s gravity will, in turn, help the spacecraft to reduce the tremendous speed for the purpose of six month’s voyage from and to Mars, which in turn helps to re-enter into Earth’s Atmosphere.
Preparation for the mission
Last November NASA had selected five companies for the purpose of studying a high power solar electric propulsion system which can be used for the purpose of deep-space missions. This is mainly done because of the fact that subsequent human missions will need a power system which will generate the energy three times than that of the current system.
In addition, the trips to the “gateway” will be done by Orion. It is a spacecraft which is manufactured by Lockheed Martin Corp while the service modules will be given by European Space Agency. The first flight of Orion will be scheduled early in the next year and it will be without the crew.