The president of the United States, Joe Biden, placed a piece of moon rock on the Oval Office as soon as he began his administration in the White House.
But what does this moon rock mean and why is it in Joe Biden's Oval Office? It is nothing more than a declaration of intentions.
According to NASA , the rock was collected in 1972 by Apollo 17 astronauts Ronald Evans and Harrison Schmitt and Eugene Cernan – the last humans to walk on the Moon – and is placed in the Oval Office as a symbolic recognition of the missions of the 1960s and 1970s, which marked the leadership of the United States in the space race. But, at the same time, they are a sign of the commitment of the United States Government to the space exploration program, which aims, first, at the Moon, and later, at Mars.
The first step of the new US space program is spearheaded by Artemis , whose goal is to re-explore the Moon, once again taking a man, but also the first woman, to the South Pole of the Moon in 2024. But what? what's the point of exploring an already known site? Neither more nor less than establishing the first human base outside Earth ( nuclear reactor included ), and from which, at some point, it is planned to send humans to Mars based on the principle that, without gravity, less fuel is needed to take off .
That is why the 332 gram rock, classified by NASA as sample number 76015,143, is in the sight of President Joe Biden.
The United States seeks to affirm its leadership at the forefront of space exploration at a time when the world's other superpower, China, has made huge strides in its space advancements . But despite the competition, the United States found the eccentric Elon Musk the perfect ally to achieve its ambitious goal: to reach the Moon to reach Mars.