NASA’s Orion space capsule landed in the Pacific Ocean on Sunday, completing a successful test mission to the moon and back. An unmanned crew module designed to carry astronauts to the lunar surface on future missions splashed down San Diego Beach 12:40 pm ET.
“This is an extraordinary day,” National Aeronautics and Space Administration Administrator Bill Nelson said in an agency livestream after Orion’s return. “It’s historic because we’re now going back into space, into deep space, with a new generation.”
It was 50 years ago today that astronauts walked on the moon for the last time on Apollo 17, the last mission of NASA’s Apollo program. Artemis is the agency’s program to return astronauts to the Moon, aiming to explore deep space to Mars.
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