Friday, April 23, Thomas Pesquet took off for a second mission to the International Space Station (ISS). When he arrives, the French will be one of the 11 occupants of the ISS and he will stay there for six months. Thomas Pesquet will occupy the position of Station Commander for the last month of his mission.
For its part, NASA already has its eyes fixed on other more distant missions. The announced goal of the US space agency is to organize a return to the moon for several astronauts by the end of the decade.
On Friday April 16, 2021, NASA selected SpaceX’s Starship rocket to land on the Moon. Billionaire Elon Musk’s business has previously competed with defense firm Dynetics and Jeff Bezos’s firm, Blue Origin. SpaceX is now alone in contention for the next lunar mission.
Faced with Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk offered an innovative solution that was less expensive than its competitors: $ 2.9 billion, compared to $ 5 billion for Dynetics and $ 10 billion for Blue Origin. SpaceX already provides travel for astronauts to the ISS, and NASA is extending its commitment to bringing in private actors, even for the most complex missions.