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‘Gateway’ Lunar Space Station of ‘Artemis Mission’: UAE to provide an Airlock  

UAE’s MBR Space Centre has collaborated with NASA to provide an airlock for the first lunar space station Gateway that will orbit the Moon to support long-term exploration of the Moon under NASA’s Artemis Interplanetary Mission. An Air lock is an intermediate chamber with two airtight doors that permits passage between regions of differing air pressures. 

Earlier in 2020, European Space Agency (ESA) had partnered with NASA to contribute habitation and refuelling modules to the Gateway.  

Gateway will be humanity’s first space station in deep space, an orbiting outpost in near- rectilinear halo orbit (NRHO) around the Moon. It will act as the point of aggregation for crewed vehicle, Human landing system, logistic supply craft and vehicles transiting further into deep space to Mars and will provide vital support for a long-term human presence on the Moon and beyond on Mars. Habitation module, Refuelling module, Power and Propulsion Element, Airlock, Robotic system, are some important components of the Gateway.  

Gateway, alongwith Space Launch System, Orion spacecraft, Human Landing System, Surface Operations, Exploration Ground Systems, Space Communications & Navigation, Surface Mobility, Spacesuits, and Surface Infrastructure form important components of Artemis mission hardware.  

Artemis Moon Mission will build a base camp on the lunar surface to give astronauts a home to live and work on the Moon. This nly create long-term human presence on and around the Moon in preparation for human missions and habitations on Mars. Artemis is a beginning towards deep space human habitation for making humans a multi-planet species.  

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References:  

  1. NASA 2024. News – NASA, United Arab Emirates Announce Artemis Lunar Gateway Airlock. Posted 07 January 2024. Available at https://www.nasa.gov/news-release/nasa-united-arab-emirates-announce-artemis-lunar-gateway-airlock/ 
  2. NASA 2024. Mission – Gateway. Available at https://www.nasa.gov/mission/gateway/  
  3. Lehnhardt E., and Connell D., 2024. The Gateway Program as Part of NASA’s Plans for Human Exploration Beyond Low Earth Orbit. IEEE Aerospace Conference (AeroConf), 2024.  Available at https://ntrs.nasa.gov/api/citations/20230014342/downloads/IEEE%20-%20Gateway%20Overview%20FINAL%20100223.pdf  
  4. Fuller S., et al 2022. Gateway program status and overview. Journal of Space Safety Engineering. Volume 9, Issue 4, December 2022, Pages 625-628. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsse.2022.07.008  
  5. Cohen B.,2023. Artemis Program Overview. Endurance Science Workshop, 2023. Available athttps://ntrs.nasa.gov/api/citations/20230012221/downloads/Cohenartemispresentation.pdf 

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Umesh Prasad
Umesh Prasad
Science journalist | Founder editor, Scientific European magazine

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