Artemis II Astronaut Crew

The Artemis mission to land the first person of color and woman on the moon has officially launched. The first part of the mission, Artemis l, launched on November 16, 2022, which means Artemis ll can be started. The first step of it though is to introduce the astronauts who will circle the moon and land back on Earth. The team will consist of a commander, a pilot, and two mission specialists. 

For the Artemis ll mission, the commander will be Reid Wisemen, who is a 47-year-old American astronaut. This is also not Wisemen’s first time in space, since he was a flight engineer on the International Space Station (ISS) for 165 days. As it was his first spacetime, he completed over 80 hours of research and 13 hours on spacewalks. Wisemen will be more than ready to be the commander of Artemis ll.

The pilot of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Artemis ll mission will be 46-year-old Victor Glover. He will also be the first person of color to land on the moon. Glover’s astronaut journey began when he was chosen in 2013 while working in the United States Senate. Along with those two achievements, he has been a Naval Aviator, and over his time as a pilot, Glover has collected 3,000 flight hours in almost 40 different aircraft. Similar to his commander, he has worked on the ISS serving as a Flight Engineer. 

Artemis II astronauts. Left to right: Jeremy Hasen, Reid Wisemen, Victor Glover, and Christina Koch. Photo provided by CNN.

As the woman with the longest single spaceflight accounting for 328 days, Christina Koch will also be the first woman to land on the moon. She has been involved in the first few all-female spacewalks, and she also participated in Expeditions 59, 60, and 61. For those expeditions, she was the first flight engineer to work aboard the ISS, which will be great knowledge for her duty as Mission Specialist 1 on Artemis ll. 

Last but not least, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) astronaut, Jeremy Hasen, will be the second mission specialist on Artemis ll. His journey on the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket will be history for the CSA since Hasen will be the first Canadian to travel to the moon. Bachelor’s Degree in Space Science and has experience flying being a fighter pilot. Although, on the ocean floor, he has been a crewmember of NEEMO 19, which simulated deep-sea exploration for seven days off the coast of Key Largo, Florida. 

With their achievements and experiences combined, the four Artemis ll astronauts will be more than ready to circle the moon and return back to Earth. NASA is sending these astronauts to the moon in hopes to take another step forward to land astronauts on the red planet known as Mars. 

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