According to Acting NASA Administrator Steve Jurczyk, the agency’s Artemis mission has a new target under President Biden’s budget request: in addition to putting the first woman on the Moon, it would also deliver the first person of colour to the surface of the moon. White men have been the only Earthlings to strike the Moon’s surface so far.
Jurczyk said in a statement, “The president’s discretionary request increases NASA’s ability to better understand Earth and further monitor and predict the impacts of climate change. It also gives us the necessary resources to continue advancing America’s bipartisan Moon to Mars space exploration plan, including landing the first woman and first person of color on the Moon under the Artemis program.”
Biden’s 2022 budget demand encompasses $24.7 billion for NASA.
NASA already confirmed that the Artemis project, named after the Greek Moon goddess and Apollo’s twin sister, will land a woman on the Moon by 2024. The 18 astronauts who will serve on the Artemis mission were announced by NASA in November. There are many people of colour in the party, as well as nine women. It is unknown who will be the first woman or person of colour to walk on the Moon.
The first uncrewed flight of the Space Launch System, the massive rocket that NASA wants to use to carry people to the Moon, is planned for later this year.