On April 3rd, 2023, NASA and CSA (Canadian Space Agency) will announce the crew of the Artemis II mission! This mission will be the first crewed test flight of the Orion spacecraft, Space Launch System (SLS) rocket, and the ground systems necessary to launch. Artemis II will be an approximately 10 day long mission. During this time, the life support systems onboard the Orion spacecraft will be tested to prove that they will be able to support humans living and working in a deep space environment. You can read more about it at our blog post here.
Artemis II is the second mission in the Artemis program, which is the NASA program that will return human beings to the surface of the Moon. There is still a lot to learn about the Moon, and doing so can help us understand the origin of Earth and the history of our solar system. Getting back to the Moon will allow us to test new technologies and abilities that serve the larger goal of sending people to Mars. A part of this is the development of the Lunar Gateway. This space station will orbit the Moon, and will have Canadarm3. In exchange for this robotic contribution, a crew member on Artemis II is reserved for a CSA astronaut. You can read more about the Artemis program and the Lunar Gateway here.
The crew of Artemis II will consist of three NASA astronauts and one CSA astronaut. There are currently four Canadian astronauts who could get the spot. David Saint-Jacques and Jeremy Hansen were selected to become astronauts in 2009. Jenni Sidey-Gibbons and Joshua Kutryk were selected in 2017. All four are extremely accomplished, with careers ranging in areas from engineering, space science, piloting, and medicine. You can read more about each of the astronauts here.