Alone on Europa

Updated: May 16, 2019

In 2050, Chloe Fillmore was selected from more than 11,000 applicants to participate in the NASA Solo Mission to Europa and was scheduled to become the first woman to complete a solo mission to discover a new planet. As the solitary member of the AOE-50-F Argo Mission, she will travel to Europa, an Earth-like planet, and send samples back home.

Mission AOE-30-F was launched by a Europa VI rocket from Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island, Florida on July 24, 2050 and was the first solo manned mission project of NASA’s Argo Project.

The Argo spacecraft has three parts: The command Module with a cabin for one astronaut, and the only part of the spacecraft that will return to earth; a service module, which supports the command module in its propulsion stage, while providing electrical power, oxygen, and water; and a lunar module to help the spacecraft land on Europa.

Two hours into the launch, the spacecraft separated from its boosters and traveled for three years until Astronaut Fillmore was able to land the Argo on Europa’s surface. Fillmore describes her first steps onto Europa as not only life changing for her but for the entire galaxy. She continues to research the planet and to send her stories and discoveries back to earth.

Despite her hard work, Fillmore will not make a return mission to the Earth. She is destined to become a permanent human fixture on a new and foreign planet. When we look to the sky, we will remember that she is up there, representing the promise of human existence fulfilled.

Natalie: This photo series was done by using the Platinum Palladium technique, a technique that’s the most durable of all the photographic processes and, if made properly, is estimated to last thousands of years. Despite its very delicate and large tonal range, platinum palladium prints are incredibly durable, much like the machines that launch astronauts light years across the universe to distant planets. NASA requires machines that can stand the demands of intergalactic travel, and the platinum palladium print process rises to that challenge to document planets where no man or woman has gone before.

platinum palladium prints

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