The Artemis I mission was, as we know, a complete success, and is destined to represent a clear turning point, to symbolically open (because in fact is already underway) the new race towards the Moon.
Something that involves, as we well know, both the space agencies of different nations, as well as various commercial enterprises. Artemis I was unmanned, being dedicated to verifying the reliability of the Space Launch System, an orbital launch system designed by NASA and derived from that of the Space Shuttle. However, Snoopy was present on board, the zero-gravity indicator who in the photo wears a beautiful smile, just after being “unpacked” from his space carrier, on January 5th of this year.
Such zero-gravity indicators provide a convenient visual indication – simply starting to fluctuate – of when a space probe has reached the state of microgravity. From Snoopy’s smile it can easily be deduced that the mission that has just ended was to his full liking. Unlike other animals, sacrificed in the space race, Snoopy has completed a round trip mission and – as we see – he appears fully healthy on his return to Earth.
It would be nice to say that human awareness has changed for better since the time of the dog Laika , except that the fact of still having a planet marred by wars does not induce too much optimism, in this sense.
Yet Snoopy’s smile speaks to us of something well beyond our limits and more trivial conveniences. He tells us that an infinite sky of stars is still there waiting for us and that exploring the sky can still be an engaging adventure of love and passion. In fact, stopping dreaming won’t bring us closer to peace, far from it. Let’s always keep that in mind.