Artemis I Has Launched

Image (Credit): NASA’s Space Launch System rocket carrying the Orion spacecraft launches on the Artemis I flight test, Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022, from Launch Complex 39B at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

After multiple attempts, NASA’s Artemis I mission started earlier today when the Space Launch System took off from the Kennedy Space Center carrying the uncrewed Orion spacecraft. It was a successful start to 25 day mission.

For a third time now, I am providing the mission facts, which are more meaningful given that we have a true launch:

  • Launch date: Nov. 16, 2022
  • Mission duration: 25 days, 11 hours, 36 minutes
  • Total distance traveled: 1.3 miIlion miles
  • Re-entry speed: 24,500 mph (Mach 32)
  • Splashdown: Dec. 11, 2022

This first test of the rocket and capsule will get us to the Artemis II mission, which includes a crewed Orion capsule.

Apollo II Astronaut Michael Collins said “I think a future flight should include a poet, a priest and a philosopher . . . we might get a much better idea of what we saw.” At the moment we are sending dummies around the Moon, but let hopes the others follow shortly.