You must log in or register to comment.

H-K_47 t1_iyg4t3g wrote

> “I have a candidate for you for flying to the moon,” the French president told U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris as the two met at NASA headquarters Wednesday, according to a video posted on social media.

> The contender standing next to him was Thomas Pesquet, a 44-year-old Frenchman first selected as a European Space Agency astronaut in 2009, who has since been to the International Space Station twice.

> The U.S. government is aiming to return humans to the surface of the moon around 2025 under the third stage of its Artemis program.

> The third Artemis mission, which won’t happen until 2025 at the earliest, will then aim to transport humans back to the lunar surface.

> “He wants to go to Artemis 3,” Macron said of Pesquet in the video posted to his personal Twitter account, putting his compatriot forward as a willing candidate.

> However, the standing deal was not expected to include a spot on Artemis 3 and, regardless, the ESA’s management, not national leaders, usually decides which of the serving astronauts are put forward for international missions.

> [NASA] has so far not publicly selected who from its recently enlarged astronaut core would be selected for any future moon mission. However, Pesquet is keen to fly and previously told POLITICO he’d like to see Europe embark on its own human spaceflight program.

That's exciting. I know a Canadian is slated to go on the Artemis 2 flyby, but they haven't announced anything for the other missions yet. I believe Artemis 3 and 4 will each only carry 2 astronauts down to the surface, so it's pretty limited. I can't imagine the government agreeing to put anyone other than 2 Americans on A3, but there's a chance for an international crewmate on A4.

I really hope they can expand the crew sizes eventually. The planned lander is certainly large enough to accommodate a whole bunch of people, but Orion is too small and is limited to only 4 at a time. But maybe in time they'll upgrade to a bigger capsule. Would be fantastic to land like a dozen people all at once from multiple Artemis Accords partners.


ballthyrm t1_iyhe8ql wrote

I think that's exactly what's going to happen.
They are going to get there on starship with big astronaut crews.
If they want to build their moon base, they going to need a lot of qualified people.
If kg -> moon is not an issue, you will start running out of Astronauts.


hawkwings t1_iyhj1by wrote

France would be better off recommending a younger person. 44 is not too old, but it will be too old in 6 years. A 33 year old who can wait 10 years would be better.


mfb- t1_iyh10h0 wrote

Luckily neither one of them will decide that.

I don't mind trying to get a European spot on Artemis 3 (although I don't see NASA sending a European astronaut to the surface there), but the decision who should be made by ESA and NASA, not by politicians supporting someone from their country.

ESA has 7 active astronauts, by 2025 all of them will have made at least one half-year stay at the ISS (Andreas Mogensen is the last one with only a short flight, he is expected to fly on Crew-7 in fall 2023 for a half-year stay), four of them will have made two stays and lived on the ISS for about a year in total.


OcculusSniffed t1_iyhxqde wrote

The head of NASA is a political appointment, so Harris absolutely has influence over that decision.


JefferyGoldberg t1_iygpofp wrote

I'm sure Kamala Harris will be heavily involved in who goes to the moon in 2025... What kind of article is this?


TheoremaEgregium t1_iyhauw8 wrote

He's probably saying it to everybody he meets on his trip. Just in case.


JuteuxConcombre t1_iyhpib9 wrote

They met at NASA HQ to discuss space cooperation between the US and France I think


TheAmericanQ t1_iyhpr7o wrote

NASA is part of the executive and crew selection needs to happen years in advance. I’d absolutely believe the second highest ranking member of the executive branch has the power to lobby for crew placement. Also, if 2025 is really the target, serious discussions of who will be in the crew are likely happening now making the timing of Macron’s comments make sense.


vibrunazo t1_iyk8teq wrote

He's probably Reddit's favorite Astronaut. Pesquet shitposting from the Moon would next level awesome.


ShiningInTheLight t1_iyhpggb wrote

France is our oldest ally. It would be a nice gesture to put one of their astronauts on the moon.


HolyGig t1_iyhue88 wrote

That's not really a decision for the US though, Europe's participation in Artemis is through the ESA.

I know Canada and Japan both have astronauts on early Artemis missions but I don't think its been decided who will be the first non-American to step on the Moon. That certainly won't happen on Artemis III but I bet it is a European given ESA's contributions. Will be an interesting and I assume hard fought over political decision when it does happen. Wouldn't surprise me if it did end up being a French astronaut though


ReturnOfDaSnack420 t1_iyibc9r wrote

I have no doubt Pesquet will go to the Moon as part of the Artemis program as long as the Artemis program follows through on its objectives.


Decronym t1_iyk8uhl wrote

Acronyms, initialisms, abbreviations, contractions, and other phrases which expand to something larger, that I've seen in this thread:

|Fewer Letters|More Letters| |-------|---------|---| |ESA|European Space Agency| |Isp|Specific impulse (as explained by Scott Manley on YouTube)| | |Internet Service Provider| |LEO|Low Earth Orbit (180-2000km)| | |Law Enforcement Officer (most often mentioned during transport operations)| |N1|Raketa Nositel-1, Soviet super-heavy-lift ("Russian Saturn V")| |SLS|Space Launch System heavy-lift| |TPS|Thermal Protection System for a spacecraft (on the Falcon 9 first stage, the engine "Dance floor")|

|Jargon|Definition| |-------|---------|---| |Raptor|Methane-fueled rocket engine under development by SpaceX|

^([Thread #8373 for this sub, first seen 2nd Dec 2022, 00:33]) ^[FAQ] ^([Full list]) ^[Contact] ^([Source code])


Few_Carpenter_9185 t1_iyj54dj wrote

Macron knows it's not cheese, right? One never likes to stereotype, but stereotypes have bit of truth to them. And we all know how the French feel about cheese.

Just checking. I want to be sure everyone's base assumptions are aligned. Imagine there's a parade by the Arc 'd Triumph, a big photo op with their share of the samples, and the confusion, disappointment etc. when it's just some rocks, and not a chunk of nice Roquefort aged 4.5 bn years or whatnot. And Macron has to be all apologetic and send home a blue-ribbon panel of chemists and Michelin star rated chefs they had assembled.

If one takes a look at the historical blips in light sweet crude futures each time Apollo landed, it's clear what a bunch of folks figured America was going there in the first place for.

Probably speaks to a greater need for transparency in space science and exploration overall.