NASA is sending a crew for its first human mission to the moon in more than 50 years, including a woman and a black astronaut for the first time.
According to the French news agency AFP, NASA astronaut Christina Cook, who holds the record for the longest space flight by a woman, will be part of the Artemis Two mission next year.
US Navy test pilot Victor Glover will pilot the Orion spacecraft to orbit the moon in November 2024, becoming the first black astronaut to participate in a lunar mission.
The crew includes astronaut Reid Wiseman, 47, a U.S. Navy pilot who once served as chief of the astronaut office at NASA, and former fighter pilot Jeremy Hanson, 47, who is now with the Canadian space agency.
Three Americans and one Canadian will become the first astronauts to go deep into space since the historic Apollo mission in 1972.
The Artemis Two flight marks the first return of humans to the Moon in half a century and a precursor to an eventual mission to Mars.
All three American astronauts have spent all their time on the International Space Station, while Jeremy Henson will make his first space flight.
The four astronauts, dressed in blue flight suits, were introduced by NASA Administrator Bill Nelson at a ceremony at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.
The intensive training phase of these astronauts will begin in which they will be prepared for this mission.
“The biggest, most powerful rocket in the world is taking them up into the sky and up,” Bill Nelson said.
44-year-old female astronaut Christina Cook is an electrical engineer who spent 11 consecutive months in space.
‘Am I excited, absolutely,’ says Cook.
“Artemis Two is more than a mission to the moon,” says Victor Glover, a 46-year-old black astronaut.
He said that this is the next step that will take humanity to Mars.