Space: 5 Events Expected In 2022

While the year 2021 ended in beauty with the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, the year 2022 is also shaping up to be very exciting in the field of space exploration missions. We have listed for you 5 events expected in 2022.

1- First data from the James Webb Telescope

The launch of the James Webb Telescope or JWST was the space event of late 2021.

The brand new space telescope, which blasted off on Dec. 25 aboard an Ariane rocket, is on its way to the Lagrange L2 point 1.5 million miles from Earth.

It should reach its destination by the end of January and calibrate its mirrors and instruments during 5 months.

If all goes well, the James Webb Telescope should deliver its first observations in the summer of 2022.

Thanks to it, we will know more about the Orion Nebula (one of its first targets) and we may be able to unlock some of the mysteries of the birth of the universe.

2- The launch of the Artemis lunar program

The Artemis Program is the most ambitious aerospace project of the decade.

With this manned space program, NASA the U.S. space agency aims to bring a crew to the moon by 2025.

This program aims to explore the Moon through the organization of regular missions and should lead to the installation of a permanent post on our natural satellite.

This lunar program should also allow for the testing of equipment and procedures that will be used during future more distant missions... on the surface of the planet Mars!

Although astronauts will return to the moon in 2025 at the earliest, the year 2022 will be marked by the liftoff of the Artemis 1 mission.

For this first test, the Space Launch System heavy lift launcher and Orion capsule will blast off empty. They will make their way to the Moon before returning to land in the Pacific.

Two launch windows are planned for now: between March 12 and 27 and between April 8 and 23, 2022.

Then, during the Artemis 2 mission planned in 2024, four humans will be sent around the Moon.

Finally, during the Artemis 3 mission scheduled in 2025, a man and for the first time a woman will walk on the lunar soil.

3- The first Starship flight

Starship, the spacecraft envisioned by SpaceX is considered by some to be the ship of the future.

Designed to propel a load of more than 100 tons into space, it should allow Elon Musk to realize his wildest dream: to colonize the planet Mars.

Before that, the Starship was chosen to be the lander for the Artemis lunar missions. Its first orbital flight, scheduled for 2022, will therefore be closely scrutinized by NASA and the rest of the world.

For its test flight into Earth orbit, SpaceX's launch vehicle will be launched by the 69-meter-high Super Heavy booster.

4- Ariane 6 takes off

2022 will also be a banner year for the European Space Agency. Ariane 6, the latest European rocket, is indeed scheduled to take off this year.

Its first flight has been postponed because of the health crisis related to the Covid-19 epidemic but should take place during the second half of 2022.

This European launcher is supposed to mark the beginning of a new era.

It has been designed to be more flexible than its elder Ariane 5 and can be used under two different versions: Ariane 62 equipped with 2 engines and Ariane 64 equipped with 4 engines.

5- The first European rover on Mars

Until now, only two countries, the United States and China, have succeeded in landing a working device on the surface of Mars.

Europe would also like to be represented on the red planet by landing the Rosalind Franklin rover.

The rover, named after the researcher who determined the structure of DNA, is expected to take off in the fall of 2022 toward Oxia Planum, a basin near the Martian equator.

Its mission will include searching for traces of past life and studying the Red Planet's atmosphere.

But before that, it will have to succeed its landing planned for spring 2023 and avoid the same fate as Schiaparelli (the previous European lander which crashed on the surface of Mars in 2016).

Author: Audrey
Copyright image: Kevin Gill
Tags: MARS, Moon, James Webb telescope, NASA, aims, Lander, lunar, Ariane 6, SpaceX, rover, DNA, Atmosphere, HEALTH, rocket, European Space Agency, spring, booster, Super Heavy, launch vehicle, Earth orbit, test flight, Artemis, Schiaparelli, Red Planet, Covid-19 epidemic, Rosalind Franklin rover, planet, Europe, China, United States, Oxia Planum, Ariane 64, Ariane, basin, Ariane 5, martian, Equator, crashed, Elon Musk, summer, calibrate, Earth, L2 point, Ariane rocket, Blasted, telescope, brand, JWST, First Data, listed,
In French: Espace : 5 événements attendus en 2022
En español: Espacio: 5 eventos previstos en 2022
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