Top 5 amazing FIRSTs of ESA in 2022: Artemis I mission, Vega C rocket launch, one year of Webb Telescope

2022 was a year of many ‘firsts’ for the European Space Agency. From witnessing the first European female International Space Station commander, the launch of the first Vega-C rocket to the first Artemis mission launch, and a lot more.  (NASA)

Let’s begin the top highlights of ESA with the first Artemis mission which was launched in November 2022. (NASA) 

Artemis I is the first complex mission that will enable human exploration of the Moon. After its 1.4-million-mile mission beyond the Moon and back, the Orion spacecraft for the Artemis I mission arrived back at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on December 30. (NASA)

The second top achievement by ESA in 2022 in the list is that Astronauts Matthias Maurer and Samantha Cristoforetti performed the first spacewalk. (ESA)

Among these, Samantha Cristoforetti also became the first  European female commander of the International Space Station during her mission. (ESA)

Third on the list is the James Webb Space Telescope. It has completed one year in space. (NASA)

James Webb Telescope was launched on an Ariane 5 rocket on 25 December 2021. The launch vehicle and launch site are part of the European Space Agency's contribution to the mission. (NASA)

Vega-C rocket launch: Operating from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, this rocket extends Europe’s autonomy in space by supporting new mission possibilities, including return-to-Earth operations with ESA's reusable Space Rider reentry vehicle. (ESA)

Vega-C is a single body rocket nearly 35 m high with a mass at liftoff of 210 tonnes. It is able to place about 2300 kg in a reference 700 km-polar orbit. (ESA)

ESA launched the Meteosat Third Generation - Imager satellite developed in collaboration with EUMETSAT, to revolutionise weather forecasting. (ESA)

The first Meteosat Third Generation satellite, the imager MTG-I1, was launched on 13 December on an Ariane 5 launcher. (ESA)

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