NASA will launch a mission to an unexplored world in 2022

The wealth of space missions launched in 2021 guarantees a year filled with new discoveries from the entire solar system – and beyond.

Several countries plan for 2022 to be the year they send robotic explorers to the moon – while they plan ahead for humans to return to the moon’s surface in the future.

Here’s what you can expect from our space exploration in 2022.

Exploring Mars

Mars was a hotspot in 2021 with three missions from separate countries arriving at the red planet early in the year, and interest in fourth planet from the sun is only heating up.

Prepare to inspire new flights with NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter, which is still far beyond its life expectancy, and the beginning of the Perseverance rover’s study of the intriguing remnants of an ancient river delta on Mars beginning in summer. Samples collected that could reveal whether organic molecules associated with signs of life, or even microfossils, are present on Mars.

Another robot explorer will also land on the red planet. Europe’s first planetary rover is ready for launch.

ExoMar’s Rosalind Franklin rover, a joint venture between the European Space Agency and the Russian space agency Roscosmos, is expected to rise in September. It was originally scheduled for launch in July 2020, but agencies mentioned concerns about coronavirus and preparedness for spacecraft components.
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The larger ExoMars program includes the Trace Gas Orbiter, which was launched to Mars in 2016 and has sent scientific data back. The Trace Gas Orbiter will also pass on information collected by the rover after it lands on Mars.

When the ExoMars rover launches in September from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, it will spend nine months cruising through space before reaching Mars on June 10, 2023. The rover will land at Oxia Planum, an area just north of the Mars equator. Oxia Planum is an area containing layers of muddy minerals formed under wet conditions 4 billion years ago.

The mission is designed to search for life on Mars and investigate its history with water. The rover has the ability to drill below the surface of Mars to a depth of 6.5 feet (2 meters), where scientists hope they can find signs of life.

Across the solar system

Prepare for more amazing images from NASA’s Juno mission, which has orbited Jupiter since 2016. During its extended mission, the spacecraft moves forward to observe some of Jupiter’s 79 moons. It will come close to one of its most captivating moons, Europe, in September.

Europe fascinates scientists because a global ocean is located under its ice shell and it can support life. Occasionally, tabs emerge from holes in the ice into space. Juno can observe these tabs in action.

Expect the first images and scientific data from the James Webb Space Telescope in June and July. The telescope is on a quest to look into the atmospheres of exoplanets and look deeper into the universe than ever before.
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NASA will launch the spacecraft Psyche in August and send it on a four-year journey to an unexplored potato-shaped world in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. The mission will study a metal-rich asteroid that appears only as a blurred blur for terrestrial and space-based telescopes.
The unusual object may be a remnant metal core from a planet or a piece of watch material that never melted, according to NASA. Psyche can help astronomers learn more about the formation of our solar system.
In September, prepare for yet another first, as NASA deliberately crashes the DART spacecraft into the moon of an asteroid to change the motion of a near-Earth asteroid.
NASA launches mission to crash into a terrestrial asteroid to try to change its motion in space
The Double Asteroid Redirection Test will target Dimorphos, a small moon orbiting the near-terrestrial asteroid Didymos. This will be the Agency’s first full-scale demonstration of this type of technology on behalf of planetary defense. Although this asteroid and its moon do not pose a threat to Earth, it is a good way to test asteroid deflection technology.

The collision will be recorded by LICIACube, or Light Italian Cubesat for Imaging of Asteroids, an accompanying cube satellite provided by the Italian space agency. Three minutes after the crash, CubeSat will fly past Dimorphos to record photos and video.

The video of the impact will be streamed back to Earth, which should be “pretty exciting,” said Elena Adams, DART mission systems engineer at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory.

Eyes on the moon

In 2022, everyone is looking to send robots to the moon.

The Indian space research organization will send its Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft on a lunar mission in 2022.

The first Chandrayaan mission was launched in October 2008 as India’s first unmanned lunar spacecraft. The orbiter “played a crucial role in the discovery of water molecules” on the moon, according to NASA. Although quiet in 2009, NASA was able to detect the spacecraft’s location in 2017.
In 2019, ISRO sought to land Chandrayaan-2 near the moon’s south pole, but it crashed shortly after teams lost contact with the lander. NASA later found the crash site and the waste field created by the crash.

However, the orbiter of that mission has remained safe as it continues to orbit the moon and will be used as a communication relay for Chandrayaan-3. The mission will include a lunar lander and rover similar to the one from Chandrayaan-2.

Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency is expected to launch SLIM, or Smart Lander for the Investigating Moon mission, in 2022.

The small spacecraft will be used to demonstrate accurate lunar landing techniques to form the basis for future lunar exploration missions, according to the agency. It will also return a lunar sample to Earth.
Russia is also pushing ahead with its Luna-25 mission in 2022, which is to be the first Russian lunar mission since 1976. It will land near the moon’s south pole at the Boguslavsky crater with scientific instruments and cameras to study its surroundings.

Preparation for human spaceflight

In 2022, China will put the finishing touches on its space station, and NASA and Roscosmo’s crews will continue to come and go from the International Space Station. The European Space Agency will also announce its new class of astronauts in November.
India is preparing to send the country’s first astronauts into space in 2023, so this year the Indian space research organization will launch the first two unmanned Gaganyaan missions to test the vehicle’s capabilities.
Meanwhile, 2022 is expected to be a stress test for NASA’s Artemis program, which will land the first woman and first colored person on the moon by 2025.
NASA says the lunar landing target has been pushed to 2025 due to Blue Origin disputes, other factors

In January, the stacked spacecraft and rocket will undergo the final test, called a wet rehearsal, which includes completing the full set of operations to refuel the fuel tanks and counting down the launch – pretty much everything needed for a launch without actually launching.

The launch of Artemis I, an unmanned mission serving as the first step in the ambitious program, is likely to increase in March or April.

During the flight, the Orion spacecraft will launch on top of the SLS rocket to reach the moon and travel thousands of miles beyond it – far more than any spacecraft designed to transport humans has ever traveled. This mission is expected to last for a few weeks and will end with Orion splashing down into the Pacific Ocean.

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