NASA has just chosen the company that will manufacture the first lunar suits

The NASA continues to make progress on its project to bring its astronauts back to the moon. On Wednesday, September 7, the American space agency unveiled the name of the company that will manufacture the lunar suits for the Artemis 3 mission. This is the company Axiom Space based in Houston. Axiom Space will have to produce the suits for the first mission of the program Artemis which will tread the lunar ground.

Artemis 3 aims to landing astronauts near the lunar south pole in 2025 or 2026. This will be the first-ever manned mission to the surface of the Moon since the mission Apollo 17 in 1972. But NASA is not going to stop there since the agency intends to return to the Moon with the objective to install a permanent base by the end of the decade.

Astronauts on the Moon
NASA Credits

Regarding the choice of Axiom Space, Lara Kearney, responsible for extravehicular activities and mobility of astronauts on the Moon, indicated that the NASA was proud to collaborate with private industry on this historic mission. She added that lessons learned during Artemis 3 and future missions will pave the way for Mars missions.

The choice is made

Last June, NASA announced that it had selected Axiom Space and a team led by Collins Aerospace to develop and manufacture spacesuits for future missions to the Moon and the ISS. The two teams were in competition to win a contract worth around 3.5 billion euros, sum spread over a period of up to 2034.

According to the information, this sum will be allocated through a series of “execution orders”. The contract for Artemis 3 is one such work order and is worth approximately 228 million euros.

In a statement released Wednesday, NASA said Axiom Space will be responsible for the design, development, qualification, certification, and production of suits and equipment for Artemis 3. The space agency, its side, will maintain authority over astronaut training, mission planning, and approval of service systems.

We also know that Axiom Space will have to test the combinations in a space-like environment before the launch of Artemis 3.

Waiting for Artemis 3

For the moment, no Artemis mission has yet been launched. Artemis 1 was due to leave on September 3, but a fuel leak problem forced officials to cancel the flight. NASA’s decision on the new launch date for the mission is still awaited.

Artemis 1 aims to send the capsule Orion without a passenger around the Moon to test the capsule, but also the rocket Space Launch System. If all goes well, this mission will be followed of Artemis 2 which will make the same journey, but with astronauts. Artemis 3 will come next with the goal of landing astronauts on the surface of the Moon.

SOURCE: Space.com

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