HOUSTON, Texas — NASA is on track to return humans to the lunar surface in 2024 and their precursor mission, Artemis I, is busy running tests in outer space.
On Monday at approximately 10:43 a.m. CT the mission’s Orion spacecraft performed a powered flyby of the moon, coming within just 80 miles of its surface. The rocket is on its return trip to Earth after spending nearly three weeks in space gathering data.
According to NASA, the burn lasted about 3.5 minutes and increased Orion’s speed by more than 650 mph. This powered flyby was the last large maneuver of the mission, with only smaller trajectory corrections to target Earth remaining.