NASA’s Artemis I Parachutes Back Down to Earth After 2 Lunar Flybys


After 25 days, NASA’s Artemis I capsule successfully returned to Earth Sunday afternoon, hurtling through the atmosphere at more than 25,000 miles per hour and through an inferno of 5,000 degrees.

No humans were on board, but it wasn’t empty — some test dummies equipped to collect data and a Snoopy doll took the trip.

Three parachutes floated the nine-ton Orion capsule into the waters 200 miles off the coast of Baja, California.

For the landing, there was a U.S. Navy ship, a helicopter, boats and other vessels nearby.

CBS News reports NASA Administrator Bill Nelson has stated. “I’m overwhelmed. This is an extraordinary day. It’s historic, because we are now going back into deep space with a new generation.”

NASA says that during the mission, Orion performed two lunar flybys, coming within 80 miles of the moon’s surface. 

Orion was nearly 270,000 miles away from Earth at its furthest point during the mission. This distance is more than 1,000 times greater than the International Space Station orbiting Earth. This was done intentionally so as to ensure the system will be ready to handle conditions before it flies a crew.

CNN reports Orion covered 1.3 million miles in this mission. This is more than any other spacecraft that was designed to carry people. 

The end of this unmanned test mission coincided with the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 17 moon landing, marking the last time astronauts were there. 






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