After firing its engines close to the moon, NASA's Artemis 1 mission was able to leave contact with Earth.
The uncrewed Artemis 1 has been cruising toward the moon since it was launched.
During an Artemis 1 livestream on Monday (Nov. 21) at 8:26 a.m, NASA's Sandra Jones said that the burn sent the spaceship close to the lunar surface to leverage the moon's gravity. It took almost an hour after the burn.
During the burn on the far side of the moon, NASA was in the dark because of the lack of radio signals from Earth. The craft skimmed 80 miles above the lunar surface at 7:44 a.m. The time is 12:44
The capsule took advantage of the close approach to its main engine in a powered flyby burn which will set it on course to enter lunar orbit.
The goal of Artemis 1 is to set up a research base on the moon by the end of the 2020s. The debut of the SLS rocket was marked by the Artemis 1 liftoff.
A crucial maneuver will be set up on Nov. 25 after Monday's successful burn. The capsule will remain in the DRO until December 1, when it will return to Earth.
During the Apollo program, the spaceship and its crew traveled much closer to the lunar surface in a more circular fashion, according to Jones. Distant retrograde is important because it helps us understand how a spacecraft works.
After hitting Earth's atmosphere at tremendous speeds, the spaceship will splash down in the ocean off the coast of California.
NASA will be free to start preparing for Artemis 2 if Artemis 1 goes well.
The site of the proposed research base will be near the moon's south pole. Artemis 3 will be the first crewed lunar landing since 1972 and the first time a woman and a person of color will be on the moon.
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