From the space station, to the lunar surface, to our nearest planetary satellite, Mercury, Mercury is one of our planet’s best kept secrets.
It has been around for at least two billion years, and it’s been visited by over 1.6 billion people.
But now, thanks to a breakthrough in artificial intelligence, the space age is about to come to an end.
The UK’s Gemini spacecraft is the first to have completed a manned journey to Mercury since the Apollo missions.
It’s not just a one-off voyage; it’s a major step forward in exploration of the moon and the planets around it.
But is the spacecraft doing enough?
“We can say for certain that we have the capability to get to Mercury without any human intervention,” says John Waugh, project scientist for Gemini.
“This is really significant because it shows we can actually get there and have an operation with humans.”
So why are we on this path?
Geminis mission has proven the viability of space missions to Mercury, Venus, Mars and beyond, and its first step is a return trip to the Moon.
But it’s not all good news.
“There are some challenges we need to address,” says Dr Waugh.
“For example, we have to get Gemini back to Earth to make it operational again and it will be at the same time that we’re in a very close orbit.
The cameras need to have better filters to avoid scattering the light from the sun and so on. “
We’ve got a very low-resolution camera, but the cameras are going to need to be better in the future.
The cameras need to have better filters to avoid scattering the light from the sun and so on.
In terms of human life, Gemini has proven that there’s no shortage of people interested in exploring and exploring Mars. “
But overall, Gemini is a great test for what can be done with robotic spacecraft, because we have some really exciting technologies that are being explored.”
In terms of human life, Gemini has proven that there’s no shortage of people interested in exploring and exploring Mars.
But as human exploration continues, how far can it go?
The Gemini mission will be the final one for NASA’s Journey to Mars, the agency’s ambitious plan to send humans to the Red Planet by 2023.
It is, by far, the most ambitious programme in history, and the programme will require at least 20 years of planning and construction.
While there are still several years to go, Gemini will mark the end of NASA’s long mission to explore the solar system, with a return to the moon being the most tangible achievement.
And as the space race heats up, NASA will be working to explore new frontiers in its own missions.
“It’s been a very long road to get here,” says Waugh of Gemini.
NASA is looking to launch its first unmanned missions in 2019, with the first mission to land on Mars planned for 2021.
The agency also plans to send its first astronauts to Mars in 2021, with Mars One also hoping to send a crew there in 2021.
This year, NASA is also planning to launch the Orion spacecraft, which will carry a crew to the space agency’s Moon base by 2022.
But as it is, the journey to Mars will take many years, which is why it’s essential that humanity’s exploration efforts are sustainable.
Gems mission is just one of many space missions NASA is trying to get off the ground.
In February, NASA plans to launch an unmanned mission to the International Space Station, the first such mission to orbit the Earth since the Soviet Union’s Soyuz spacecraft.
These missions will also be the first time humans have been to orbit Mars and will be vital in making a space race between nations a reality.
Meanwhile, in 2019 NASA is planning to send an unmanned probe to Jupiter, the second probe ever to orbit Jupiter, and could be the largest mission ever to the planet.
More importantly, in 2021 NASA plans a probe to the Alpha Centauri system, the nearest star system to our own solar system.
A trip to Alpha Centauri would mark the first direct landing on the Red Sea.
On January 15th 2021, NASA has an important announcement to make.
“NASA has just announced that it has been selected to lead the mission to Europa, the icy moon of Jupiter, which has been under active exploration since the late 1960s,” says Mike McCready, deputy administrator for science at NASA.
“The Juno mission will launch in 2022, and will study Europa’s magnetic field, oceanography, surface chemistry and possibly even detect hydrothermal vents.”
It is not just NASA that is excited about Europa.
In January 2020, the European Space Agency (ESA) will launch the LISA Pathfinder mission, an exploration mission to Jupiter’s moon Europa.
Jupiter’s moon is known as Io, and while