Artemis 1 Test Flight: the Artemis Generation Reaches for the Moon With Orion Spacecraft

Artemis 1 Test Flight: the Artemis Generation Reaches for the Moon With Orion Spacecraft

“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
—Neil Armstrong (from the surface of the Moon), July 20, 1969

With those historic words, American astronaut Neil Armstrong announced his “small step” onto the Moon’s surface from the Apollo 11 Lunar Module. More than fifty years ago, Armstrong and Lunar Module Pilot Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first people ever to land on the moon. Weather permitting, the next generation will reach for the Moon again in November with the Orion spacecraft for their inaugural Artemis 1 test flight.

The Artemis Mission was aptly named after Artemis, the twin sister of Apollo (a reference to NASA’s Apollo project) from Greek mythology. Apollo was the son of Zeus and the Greek god of divine distance. His sister, Artemis, was the Olympian goddess of the hunt, the Moon, and chastity. Greek sculptors often depicted her holding a bow and arrow with a short tunic to aid her speedy runs through the woods.

In their article, What is Artemis?, NASA shared how they plan to manifest the attributes of Artemis, “she personifies our path to the Moon as the name of NASA’s efforts to return astronauts and a new wave of science payloads and technology demonstrations to the lunar surface. When they land, American astronauts will step foot where no human has ever been before: the Moon’s South Pole.”

NASA’s Giant Leap to Reach for the Moon

NASA has also shared about their “giant leap” forward in both diversity and technology, “With Artemis missions, NASA will land the first woman and first person of color on the Moon, using innovative technologies to explore more of the lunar surface than ever before. We will collaborate with our commercial and international partners to establish the first long-term human-robotic presence on and around the Moon. Then, we will use what we learn on and at the Moon to take the next giant leap: sending the first astronauts to Mars.”

In our article about Astronaut Christina Hammock Koch, we shared about the selection of the Artemis Team of astronauts and their next steps towards crewed spaceflight. Within the next few history-making days, NASA will take the first big “giant leap” towards their long-term lunar mission with the Artemis 1 Moon Rocket. Artemis 1 is an uncrewed test flight with the Orion spacecraft, launching on their newest heavy-lift rocket, the Space Launch System (SLS).

Artemis 1 Mission & SLS Facts

  • Most powerful rocket in the world
  • Mass at liftoff: 5.75 million pounds
  • Thrust at liftoff: 8.8 million pounds
  • Payload to the Moon: 59,000 pounds
  • Mission duration: 42 days, 3 hours, 20 minutes
  • Uncrewed with three simulated human mannequins
  • Amazon Alexa and Cisco Webex will assist virtually
  • Voyaging 40,000 miles past the Moon in deep space
  • Flying farthest distance from Earth: 280,000 miles
  • Total distance traveled: 1.3 million miles
  • Re-entry speed: 24,500 mph (Mach 32)


“During this flight, the uncrewed Orion spacecraft will launch on the most powerful rocket in the world and travel thousands of miles beyond the Moon, farther than any spacecraft built for humans has ever flown, over the course of about a three-week mission.” (NASA)

Artemis 1 Reserve Blend
Smooth From Start to Finish

To commemorate this milestone in human space exploration, Copper Moon Coffee is producing the limited-run Artemis 1 Reserve, a premium coffee blend inspired by the Artemis 1 Moon Mission. Perfectly balanced right from the first sip, with a smooth start and finish. Reach for the Moon® and enjoy launching into your day with flavor notes of toasted almond, milk chocolate, and blueberry, with a pleasantly crisp finish.

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Artemis 1: We Are Ready to Journey Half a Million Miles

NASA’s Space Launch System Rocket Ready for Moon Launch