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NASA's Orion spacecraft returns to the planet

NASA's Orion spacecraft touched down in the Pacific Ocean this Sunday, west of Baja California, after an unprecedented mission, traveling more than 1.4 million miles on a path around the Moon and returning safely to the Moon. Earth, with which the flight test of the Artemis I was completed. The landing was the final phase of the Artemis I mission that began with a successful liftoff of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) rocket on November 16, and over 25.5 days NASA tested Orion in the harsh environment of space. deep, before taking the astronauts aboard the Artemis II. “The landing of the Orion spacecraft, which occurred 50 years after the Apollo 17 landing on the Moon, is the crowning achievement of Artemis I. From launching the world's most powerful rocket to the exceptional journey around the Moon and return to Earth, being a great step forward in the lunar exploration of the Artemis Generation, ”said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson. He added that over the years, thousands of people have devoted themselves to this mission, which is inspiring the world to work together to reach new cosmic shores. "Today is a great victory for NASA, the United States, our international partners and all of humanity."

During the mission, Orion made two lunar flybys, coming within 80 miles of the lunar surface. At its farthest distance during the mission, it traveled nearly 270,000 miles from our planet, more than 1,000 times farther than where the International Space Station orbits Earth, to intentionally stress systems before it flies with a crew. "With Orion safely returning to Earth, we can begin to see our next mission on the horizon, which will take the crew to the Moon for the first time as part of the next era of exploration," said Jim Free, associate administrator for Orion. NASA for Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate. Before entering the Earth's atmosphere, the crew module was separated from its service module, which is the propulsion power plant provided by the ESA (European Space Agency). During reentry, Orion endured temperatures about half as hot as the Sun's surface at about 5,000 degrees Fahrenheit. In about 20 minutes, he slowed from nearly 25,000 mph to about 20 mph for his parachute-assisted landing. In the next few days, Orion will return to shore where technicians will unload the spacecraft and transfer it by truck back to Kennedy. Once on Kennedy, the teams will open the hatch and download various payloads, including Commander Moonikin Campos, space biology experiments, Snoopy, and the official flight kit. The capsule and its heat shield will then undergo testing and analysis over the course of several months. Through Artemissions, NASA will land the first woman and first person of color on the surface of the Moon, paving the way for a long-term lunar presence and serving as a springboard for astronauts on the way to Mars.

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