Departure to Jupiter, Moon and Asteroids

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Of: Patrick Klapetz

Jupiter will also be a space travel target in 2023. This image provided by NASA shows a false color composite image of Jupiter taken by the James Webb Space Telescope. The planet’s rings and some of its small satellites can be seen along with galaxies in the background. ©NASA

What awaits the world in 2023 in space travel? ESA will launch its astronaut training program, spacecraft will be launched to Jupiter’s moons and asteroids, and many small missions will fly to the moon. The aerospace annual preview 2023.

Berlin – The moon has been reached. That was that big space goal 2022. But what about 2023? Will the moon be forgotten again? Are other celestial bodies also the focus of space agencies and private companies? And when will the European space agency ESA start its astronaut training program?

Space travel 2023: The moon remains a coveted goal in the new year

The moon will continue to be the destination of many missions in 2023. Private space company Intuitive Machines aims to land on the lunar surface for the first time in March 2023. The Houston (Texas, USA)-based start-up’s Nova-C lander is said to have loaded various instruments for lunar exploration and a spider-like rover. The British rover Spacebit is to walk on four legs over the lunar surface.

The US start-up Astrobotic also wants to send its Peregrine lander to the moon in the first quarter of 2023. On board will also be a Radiation meter from the German Aerospace Center DLR condition. The M-42 gauges are designed to Strength of the galactic cosmic rays measure on the lunar surface.

The first man on the moon: On July 20, 1969, NASA astronaut Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon.  Half a billion people follow the mission on television, and a nuclear physicist from Niederdünzebach developed the camera technology.
The first man on the moon: On July 20, 1969, NASA astronaut Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. Half a billion people follow the mission on television, and a nuclear physicist from Niederdünzebach developed the camera technology. © imago

The same type of device has already been used at Artemis I to the moon sent. In addition, Deutsche Post has joined the project and is sending the moonbox to the moon. Paying customers could purchase small honeycomb boxes and fill them with personal items. These will be sent to the moon this year – with no return.

Will India, Japan and Russia go to the moon in 2023?

In addition to private companies, national authorities also want to land on the moon. Roskosmos (Russia) could set off for the moon with its Luna 25 in July 2023. It is supposed to land on the south polar region of the moon – if it does leave. The start is through the current Ukraine war but uncertain.

The situation is different in Japan and India. The Japanese space agency JAXA wants to land the landing module Slim (Smart Lander for Investigating Moon) on the lunar surface. A small rover called Lunar Excursion Vehicle 2 (LEV-2) will then explore the moon. The landing should be accurate to within 100 meters. The mission is scheduled to launch in April 2023.

The Indian moon mission Chandrayaan-3 is scheduled to fly to the moon in June 2023 and do what Chandrayaan-2 failed in September 2019: make a safe and smooth moon landing. A lunar rover will also be on board.

In 2023, many small space probes will fly to the moon

But there is more than moon landings: some small space probes, so-called cubesats, are to set off for the moon. These cubesats are barely larger than a shoebox or microwave oven, making them relatively inexpensive. For example, the Lunar Trailblazer orbiter will search for water on the Earth’s satellite and find out how changes in surface temperature affect water and ice concentrations.

Two commercial payload missions are intended to show how inexpensive moon landings can look like and how a logistics service for the moon should be created. One is from Masten Space Systems of California and the other is from Firefly Aerospace of Texas.

Understand Jupiter’s moons Ganymede, Europa and Callisto better

The Juice mission is supposed to Jupiter walk. The spacecraft was designed by the space agencies ESA and NASA. She is scheduled to launch into space between April 14th and 30th, 2023. The Orbit of Jupiter but it should not reach it until July 2031. There she will, among other things, examine the complex environment of Jupiter, which should create a unique model for the gas giants in the entire universe.

The Juice spacecraft will pay particular attention to the moons Ganymede, Europa and Callisto. According to current theories from science, these could Jupiter moons the potential for strange, simple life Offer. In the future, when humanity sets out to colonize alien interplanetary worlds, these moons could be a starting point or even a destination.

Attention asteroids: approaching space probes

the Japanese spacecraft Osiris-Rex scheduled to return to Earth on September 24, 2023. There she only makes a stopover and becomes a sealed dust and rock sample from the Asteroid Bennu throw off Bennu takes 437 days to orbit the sun once. The sample was taken by the spacecraft on October 20, 2020. The spacecraft will then set off for the next near-Earth asteroid. Apophis should not reach Osiris-Rex until 2029.

Artist's impression: The Nasa space probe
Artist’s impression: The Nasa space probe “Osiris-Rex” has collected material from the asteroid Bennu, which it is now sending back to Earth. Then “Osiris-Rex” is supposed to chase the asteroid Apophis. © imago/symbol picture

The next spacecraft to an asteroid is scheduled to launch on October 10, 2023. psyche is to fly to the asteroid of the same name, which, according to previous observations, is said to have an unusually high metal content. The study of this asteroid should provide information about the metal core of the earth and the formation of our solar system.

ESA launches its training program for astronauts

In November 2022, ESA had their new ones Apprentices for the ESA astronaut training presented. Including two Germans, one Swiss and one Austrian. These four belong to the astronaut reserve. Your training is expected to begin in April 2023. The five selected professional astronauts will probably start their training in the fourth quarter of 2023.

Esa Space Agency
The new cohort of astronauts will be presented at the ESA Ministerial Council meeting in Paris. © Eric Lalmand/dpa

Then there is a person from the UK who is also the first disabled person to be trained to be an astronaut. He will probably be made fit for space with the reserve astronauts in April.

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