It’s official! Canadian astronaut and Royal Canadian Geographic Society Fellow Jeremy Hansen is going to the Moon!
NASA and the Canadian Space Agency today announced the four astronauts selected to venture around the Moon on Artemis II, the first crewed mission on NASA’s path to establishing a long-term presence at the Moon for science and exploration through Artemis. Hansen joins NASA astronauts Reid Wiseman, Victor Glover and Christina Hammock Koch on the mission.
As one of two mission specialists, he will work with the team to execute an ambitious set of demonstrations during the approximately 10-day Artemis II flight test that will pave the way for long-term human exploration missions to the Moon, and eventually Mars.
“There are two reasons a Canadian is going to the moon,” said Hansen to the crowd assembled at Ellington Field near NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. “The first one is American leadership. It is not lost on any of us that the United States could choose to go back to the moon by themselves, but America has made a very deliberate choice over decades to choose to curate a global team and that is true leadership.” He went on emphasize that all of Canada was grateful for the Americans’ global mindset that has allowed Canadians to contribute their very best to a shared mission.
Hansen also used his time in the spotlight to congratulate his thousands of fellow Canadians — scientists, engineers, the Canadian Space Agency, and the Canadian Armed Forces — who have worked for decades in the space program, sharing their expertise in this very special partnership on space exploration. “All of this, step by step, has added up to this moment where a Canadian is going to the moon with an international partnership and it is glorious,” he said to thunderous applause.
“I am left in awe of being reminded what strong leadership, setting big goals, with a passion to collaborate and a can-do attitude can achieve,” he concluded. “We are going to the moon together. Let’s go!”