NASA Sets Sept. 27 For Another Moon Rocket Launch Attempt
NASA will make another attempt to launch the giant Moon rocket carrying Orion spacecraft for the Artemis I mission on September 27.
A 70-minute launch window will open at 11:37 a.m. ET; and if the launch turns out to be successful, the rocket is scheduled to land on Moon on November 5.
The US space agency said it will conduct the demonstration test no earlier than September 21, with a potential backup opportunity for launch on October 2 under review.
“The updated dates represent careful consideration of multiple logistical topics, including the additional value of having more time to prepare for the cryogenic demonstration test, and subsequently more time to prepare for the launch. The dates also allow managers to ensure teams have enough rest and to replenish supplies of cryogenic propellants,” NASA said in its latest update.
Two previous attempts to launch the 322-foot-tall stack, consisting of the Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft, from Kennedy Space Center in Florida were failed due to technical glitches.
The historic maiden test flight, originally scheduled for August 29, was abandoned after encountering an issue with one of the four RS-25 engines on the bottom of the rocket’s core stage.
The second launch attempt on September 3 failed when engineers could not overcome a hydrogen leak in a quick disconnect, an interface between the liquid hydrogen fuel feed line and the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket.
Over the weekend, Artemis I teams completed repair work to the area of the hydrogen leak. The Artemis I test flight with no crew on board is aimed at laying the foundation for a sustained long-term human presence on and around the Moon.
Artemis 2 and 3 missions aim to send astronauts back to the lunar surface for the first time after half a century.
Meanwhile, NASA and SpaceX set October 3 for the launch of the Crew-5 mission to the International Space Station. Teams are working the upcoming commercial crew launch in parallel to the Artemis I planning and both launch schedules will continue to be assessed over the coming weeks. NASA and SpaceX will review the Artemis I and Crew-5 prelaunch processing milestones to understand any potential impacts. The agency’s Crew-4 return will continue to be planned following a short handover on the space station with Crew-5, NASA said.
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