(TheDailyHorn.com) – The last time an American set foot on the moon was in December 1972. Since then, America’s space program hasn’t often gone far beyond the confines of the earth’s atmosphere.
Astronauts say that scientific or technological factors aren’t to blame. Instead, NASA has decided not to return to the lunar surface because of budgetary and political hurdles. In 2019, the Trump administration announced a plan to send NASA back to the moon by 2024.
NASA officially delays the planned return of astronauts to the Moon's surface to 2025:
“The Trump administration’s target of 2024 human landing was not grounded in technical feasibility" – NASA chief Bill Nelsonhttps://t.co/7ksw3HnFP4
— Michael Sheetz (@thesheetztweetz) November 9, 2021
On Tuesday, November 9, NASA officials announced a delay of the Artemis lunar program. Initially expected to launch in 2024, America’s space agency pushed a lunar launch date to no earlier than 2025. So, what is causing the delay? There appear to be two reasons. The first is that Congress cut NASA’s budget, making it reliant on private companies.
Second, Jeff Bezos’ space company, Blue Origin, sued NASA in federal court because it chose Elon Musk’s SpaceX to build the lunar lander for NASA’s Artemis program. The lawsuit delayed progress by seven months. Now that the court has rejected Bezos’ claim, the program is back on track.
NASA wants to launch an unmanned Artemis 1 in February 2022. The mission will send a test flight around the moon and back. Artemis 2 is scheduled to send a crew around the moon in May 2024, and Artemis 3 will send astronauts to the moon sometime in 2025.
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