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The news site of Ludlow High School

The Cub

Odysseus Lander: The Launch of a Space Exploration Renaissance

Odysseus+Lander%3A+The+Launch+of+a+Space+Exploration+Renaissance

Named after the Greek King of Ithaca featured in Homer’s The Odyssey, The Odysseus Lander is the first American spacecraft in 52 years to have landed on the surface of the moon. This could be the start of a golden age of space exploration that could see the colonization of the moon and celestial cruises become reality. 

Created by Houston-based company Intuitive Machines, the Odyessus lander on Thursday, February 22nd at 6:23 pm EST made history as the first American spacecraft since the final Apollo mission to have touched down on the moon, and the first privately owned spacecraft to do so entirely. However, NASA was a big funder paying 118 million dollars for scientific data.

It launched from a SpaceX rocket on February 15th from Cape Canaveral Florida onto the moon’s south pole that could potentially contain ice and other resources. 

Flawed Landing 

It was reported by Intuitive Machines on February 23rd that Oddeyssus had tipped during landing, likely due to a lunar rock that caught on one of its six feet. Fortunately, the lander is still in operation and will be able to acquire and store valuable scientific data, before its battery is expected to run out of power about 9 days after landing. 

This is not what the company had wished or anticipated, but at least Odysseus’s mission did not play out like the Pittsburgh-based, Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander did last month.  Astrobiotic’s Peregrine Lunar Lander was on a similar NASA-backed mission to the Moon and had burned in the atmosphere after experiencing a propellant leak.

Luckily, the successfully collected data from Odysseus will ultimately be beneficial to NASA as they prepare for their Artemis 2 mission which plans to put the manned crew in the moon’s orbit in late 2025, and Artemis 3 mission which is set to land a manned crew on the moon’s south pole in 2026.

What This Could Hold for The Future of Space Exploration 

Now with private companies like Intuitive Machines and SpaceX running successful missions receiving funding from and collaborating with NASA, as well as future manned missions to the surface of the moon, we could be at the forefront of a Space Renaissance.

In our lifetimes, we could be inhabiting lunar cities, cruising through the cosmos, and mining normally scarce resources on Earth like iridium, silver, platinum, and gold by the tons. The jump could be made to bring civilization to more places like Mars and other favorable planets. The exploration of these uncharted areas would also solve some of the endless mysteries of the ever-growing universe awaiting discovery.

Even those not living extraterrestrial lifestyles would still thrive in a safer, more technologically advanced, and sustainable environment, which would mean a bright future for both Earth and Mankind.

Photos From The Lander 

https://www.nasa.gov/missions/lro/nasas-lro-images-intuitive-machines-odysseus-lander/

https://blogs.nasa.gov/artemis/2024/02/21/intuitive-machines-nasa-science-progress-toward-moon-landing/

Latest Updates on The Odysseus Lander

https://www.intuitivemachines.com/im-1

 

 

 

 

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About the Contributor
Jacob Moquin, Opinion Editor
Jacob Moquin is a part of the Class of 2024 at Ludlow High School. This is his first year as a writer for the Cub. He is also a part of Leading Lions and LHS cares, and was the former Vice President of the French Club. Outside of school and sleeping he enjoys partaking in painting and looking through his telescope on a clear night. After graduating, Jacob plans on pursuing a doctorate in veterinary medicine and aspires to have a practice of his own. However for the time being he plans on sharing his many opinions for readers to enjoy.

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