NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine will make a significant announcement about the Artemis program’s lunar exploration plans at 1 p.m. EDT Thursday, May 23, at the Florida Institute of Technology. The remarks will be carried live on NASA Television and the agency’s website.
Administrator Bridenstine will announce the commercial partner selection to develop and build the first segment of NASA’s Gateway outpost – the power and propulsion element (PPE). Gateway will be the lunar orbiting staging point to send astronauts to the Moon’s surface in five years.
Following his remarks, Bridenstine will answer questions from media at 2:10 p.m., in the Digital Scholarship Lab at Florida Institute of Technology’s Evans Library, 2949 Science Cir., Melbourne.
NASA also will host a media teleconference at 2:45 p.m. The teleconference participants include:
- Bill Gerstenmaier, associate administrator, NASA’s Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters in Washington
- Michele Gates, PPE director, NASA’s Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters in Washington
- Dan Hartman, Gateway program manager, NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston
- Mike Barrett, PPE project manager, NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland
Teleconference audio will stream live at:
For dial-in information, media must contact Jimi Russell at [email protected] or 216-704-2412 no later than 1 p.m., May 23. Questions may be submitted on Twitter during the teleconference using the hashtag #askNASA.
The Gateway’s power and propulsion element is a high-power, 50-kW solar electric propulsion spacecraft section that will provide astronauts access to the entire surface of the Moon. It also will allow the Gateway to serve as a mobile command and service module by providing a communications relay for human and robotic expeditions to the lunar surface.
Charged with returning to the Moon by 2024, NASA’s lunar exploration plans are based on a two-phased approach: the first is focused on speed – landing on the Moon in five years – while the second will establish a sustained human presence on and around the Moon by 2028. NASA will use the Gateway to access the Moon, and the agency is targeting launch of the power and propulsion element in late 2022.