Space

NASA and ESA finalize agreement to build Gateway deep space outpost

NASA and ESA finalize agreemen...
Artist's concept of the Gateway outpost
Artist's concept of the Gateway outpost
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Artist's concept of the Gateway outpost
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Artist's concept of the Gateway outpost

NASA and ESA have formally entered into a partnership agreement for building NASA's Artemis Gateway deep space outpost. The agreement signed on Tuesday is part of the US effort to attract international partners for the lunar exploration project.

Scheduled to begin construction in cislunar orbit in 2024, the Gateway outpost is intended to act as a staging point for missions to the lunar surface, and deep space, and, ultimately, for the first crewed missions to Mars. One-sixth the size of the International Space Station (ISS), the Gateway will be assembled as modules launched into a Near Rectilinear Halo Orbit, where it will not revolve around the Earth or the Moon, but one of the Lagrange points where the gravitational fields of the Earth and Moon balance out.

After it becomes operational, the Gateway will be visited by astronauts traveling in the Orion spacecraft. Onboard Gateway, the crew will be able to remotely control lunar rovers or embark on landers to descend to the Moon's surface.

NASA says that under the new agreement, ESA will provide habitation and refueling modules as well as enhanced lunar communications. The refueling module will be equipped with windows for the crew to see outside and ESA will handle operations of its modules. In addition, ESA is building two more European Service Modules (ESMs) for the Orion spacecraft that will include propulsion, power, air, and water systems for the crew capsule.

Gateway will be open for use by both international partners and private companies wishing to launch lunar missions. It will also be used to test technologies for crewed Mars missions and to demonstrate the remote management and long-term reliability of autonomous systems.

"The Gateway is designed to be supplemented by additional capabilities provided by our international partners to support sustainable exploration," says Kathy Lueders, NASA associate administrator for the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters. "Gateway is going to give us access to explore more of the lunar surface than ever before, and we’re pleased that partners like ESA will join us on these groundbreaking efforts."

Source: NASA

6 comments
paul314
So they're going to start on-orbit construction in 4 years or less, using a launch vehicle that's not yet qualified for the job and components that have not yet started being built. Have the components at least been designed? Has NASA gotten the multi-billion-dollar budget increases for this rush job?
WB
ok exactly what we need some other space station sitting in the middle of nowhere, doing nothing and costing hundreds of billions.. all that proposed by some orion spacecraft that costs double and does half than what spacex already does. Time to ditch orion and boeing.. focus on spacex, ditch those lame space stations and go and check out Mars. It's embarassing that these guys come up with one lame idea after another. The other space station kept us locked on earth for the past half century, we don't need another one doing the same... spacex rocket can take us straight to moon and mars.. no staging needed. And they are building that spaceship RIGHT NOW!
Username
It will most definitely revolve around the earth.
Kevin Ritchey
One would think that building such a location should be many times larger than the ISS and should be paid for by commercial interests. Remember the old show Babylon Five?
Emil Atik
Username(what a too simple and dull name,tbh,btw..anyways,that was slightly irrelevant),the article or the scientists/experts(listen to what they ,THEY know best in their own hard-winning field,they're specialized and educated to get way more than any others after all,so just don't be another anarchistic kinda type,whether it's a ultra-liberalist or a ultra-nationalist) says it clearly that it won't,so the let us instead see it for the time being if they even got the tech matured enough to do so right now(if not,they would get it son to have done as SAID,and giving up halfway,that's how you live in this civilization as you do,both politically,tech wise and how rational most people have become on average compared several 100 years ago,it's not giving up or be doing the usual or common or existing stuff...Good,then..),but theoretically it's possible today or in a few years,max.only funding, and mostly expertise,which they possess nowadays would tells us it 100 %,yeah:-)
Emil Atik
Username(what a too simple and dull name,tbh,btw..anyways,that was slightly irrelevant),the article or the scientists/experts(listen to what they ,THEY know best in their own hard-winning field,they're specialized and educated to get way more than any others after all,so just don't be another anarchistic kinda type,whether it's a ultra-liberalist or a ultra-nationalist) says it clearly that it won't,so the let us instead see it for the time being if they even got the tech matured enough to do so right now(if not,they would get it son to have done as SAID,and giving up halfway,that's how you live in this civilization as you do,both politically,tech wise and how rational most people have become on average compared several 100 years ago,it's not giving up or be doing the usual or common or existing stuff...Good,then..),but theoretically it's possible today or in a few years,max.only funding, and mostly expertise,which they possess nowadays would tells us it 100 %,yeah:-)