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Why will the return trip to the Moon take longer than expected?

Why will the return trip to the Moon take longer than expected?

In 1969, the Apollo mission landed humans on the moon for the first time. Today, the Artemis program faces the challenge of sending people there again. But why does it take so long despite significant technological advances?

This is due to a range of factors such as funding, political decisions and the specific objectives of the missions. The Apollo missions once consumed nearly five percent of the United States' national budget, which today equates to about $260 billion.

NASA currently receives less than half a percent of the budget. The Artemis program has cost about $90 billion so far, a relatively small amount compared to previous missions, he wrote space.com.

The political landscape is different

NASA's smaller budget can also be explained by the current political landscape. During the 1960s, the so-called Space Race between the United States of America and the Soviet Union was in full swing.

The goal was to be the first to achieve significant achievements in space, in particular sending people to the moon. This captivated not only politicians but also the public. But this race is history now.

Sending people to the moon again no longer generates the same enthusiasm and excitement among politicians and the general public as it once did. This results in the Artemis program having less urgency and financial support than the Apollo missions.

Less risks, different priorities

These days, NASA is also taking a more cautious stance, avoiding the risks it had previously encountered on Apollo missions. Bold and hasty projects are a thing of the past.

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Another difference lies in the mission objectives: While Apollo was designed primarily to put people on the moon, the Artemis program has more complex objectives.

Artemis aims to create infrastructure on the moon that would allow a permanent human presence. This includes building fuel stations to orbit the Moon and selecting sites for future colonies.

All of these factors explain why it now takes much longer to return people to the Moon.

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