NASA Langley chief to highlight center's role in Artemis Moon mission

Posted at 4:52 AM, Feb 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-10 11:23:25-05

HAMPTON, Va. - In just a few years, we'll be gathered around our screens just like in 1969, watching our first visit to the Moon in decades.

That mission will include the next man and, for the first time, a woman. And guess what - she might be local! Williamsburg native Zena Cardman recently graduated as one of NASA's newest astronauts.

The Artemis program is named for the Greek goddess of the Moon and the twin sister of Apollo. Just like the Apollo missions 50 years ago, NASA Langley Research Center is expected to play a big role.

On Monday at 1 p.m., NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine will address agency workers via video conference from Stennis Space Center in Mississippi.

Bridenstine is expected to give an update on the Artemis program and announce the president's 2021 NASA budget request.

Afterward, NASA Langley's Director, Clayton Turner, and NASA’s Associate Administrator for the Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate, Robert Pearce, are expected to reveal more information about the center's role in the mission.

Currently, Langley is wind tunnel testing a scaled-down model of the Space Launch System rocket. Engineers are also working with virtual reality to simulate the lunar surface and have designed a Lunar Lander simulation.

The goal is to get back to the Moon by 2024 and use that as a jumping off point for manned missions to Mars.