The Next Leap for Mankind – The Artemis Program


A picture taken on the Apollo 17 mission, showing an astronaut next to a massive boulder found on the moon.

Ian Meyers

NASA and seven international partners have signed accords for the Artemis program on October 13th, opening the doors for exciting news on space exploration in our solar system.

The Artemis program is NASA’s plan to go back to the Moon. Artemis started in 2017, but was officially announced last year in 2019. Since 1969, we have gone to the Moon six times, the final mission being in December 1972. But why have we stopped going? Well, several reasons. Ignoring the astronomical cost of going to the Moon, we also went just to beat the Soviets back when the Cold War was heating up through the Space Race. Ever since then, there hasn’t been much support for any more manned moon landings.

However, NASA has been making plans to return. Artemis’ goal is to place the first woman and next man on the Moon, where astronauts will spend weeks exploring the Moon and give scientists an idea of how we could operate in space. Because even though Artemis is taking us to the Moon in the next few years, it is also preparing us for our next giant leap – going to Mars.

If someone in 1969 asked you where space travel would be in the next 50 years, they will probably be disappointed to hear the answer. We have discovered hundreds of exoplanets, and even more dwarf planets in our solar system in that time, but as far as landing on different worlds other than our own…it just hasn’t been done.

Luckily, now that Artemis is underway, we will be back on the Moon by 2024, and that mission will be the forerunner to mankind setting foot on another planet. Just a few days ago, NASA announced that seven international partners have joined them on this historic program. While Apollo brought us to the Moon and back, Artemis will take not only Americans to the Moon, but the world to the Moon and beyond.