“It’s important to invite the public to participate in the naming contests and other challenges to bring people on the journey and inspire the next generation of explorers,” NASA spokeswoman Kathryn Hambleton said via email. “We look forward to the final name chosen for the moonikin and encourage people to follow along as we work towards a long-term presence on and around the Moon and get ready for the first mission to Mars.”
Why a mannequin should go out into space
Engineers will compare Artemis I flight data with previous ground-based tests performed with the same mannequin and humans, NASA said, to prepare for Artemis II.
“It is vital for us to retrieve data from the Artemis I doll to ensure that all of the newly designed systems, combined with an energy-absorbing system on which the seats are mounted, are integrated together and provide the protection needed by crew members in preparation for our first manned mission on Artemis II, “said Jason Hutt, NASA’s Head of Orion Crew Systems Integration, in a statement.
An emergency for which the mannequin has been tested is about astronauts could safely flee their seats if stuck on their heads in water after splashes, Hutt said. “The doll was exposed to a series of drops as engineers confidently figured out how the crew could safely climb out of Orion after spending a few weeks in the deep space.”
The agency also uses anthropometric test units or “crash test dummies” for evaluations that drop a demo Orion from an aircraft to ensure that the Artemis II seat and suit can reduce the risk of head and neck injury during takeoff and landing, the most severe accelerations .
NASA has a history of crowdsourcing names for its space phantoms and devices.
CNN’s Ashley Strickland and Alicia Lee contributed to this story.