photo taken in the dark of person in mock spacesuit bending over some scientific equipment

For a feature in Nature, Alexandra Witze joined a NASA team on its biggest dress rehearsal for Artemis III, the next human mission to the moon. In the high desert of northern Arizona at night, astronauts practiced walking in spacesuits, conducting field geology, and communicating with mission control — all while working in the harsh conditions and eerie lighting of the lunar south pole and troubleshooting realistic glitches. Witze’s writing and on-the-ground reporting bring us in the midst of the NASA teams as they prepare for one of the highest-profile missions the agency has undertaken in decades. Photo: NASA/Josh Valcarcel