NASA continues work on key test of Artemis I mission

This content was published on September 16, 2022 – 21:48

Miami, Sep 16 (EFE) .- NASA engineers continue their work this Friday in preparation for an important test that will take place next week, before the liftoff of the unmanned mission Artemis and whose launch from Cape Canaveral (Florida) Tentative date is September 27.

The US space agency announced today that it will hold a teleconference on Monday to report on the “cryogenic demonstration test” which will take place next Wednesday morning, which will allow it to check whether the hydrogen leak in the SLS rocket which was observed was repaired during the second launch attempt of Artemis I carried out at the beginning of September.

During next week’s tests, launch controllers will load supercold liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen into the core and mid-stage of the SLS, the most powerful rocket built to date and that the NASA plans to power manned missions to the Moon and possibly Mars.

These charges will be used to check the tightness of two plates on the side of the rocket that connect to the liquid hydrogen supply line quick disconnect system, which was the area where the leak occurred.

Also that day, evaluations of updated propellant loading procedures, which have been designed to reduce thermal stresses on the rocket system, among other tests, will also be conducted.

NASA technicians have been working for the past few days under a tent-like enclosure to protect materials and equipment from weather and other environmental conditions on Launch Pad 39B at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, where the rocket and the Orion spacecraft are still preserved.

If Wednesday’s demonstration is successful, NASA will have a better chance of being able to start this historic mission on the 27th of this month and, in this case, if all goes as planned, the Orion spacecraft will return to Earth on November 5. .

The 70-minute launch window will open at 11:37 a.m. (1537 GMT) on September 27.

As an alternative date for the launch, still awaiting confirmation, October 2 is being studied and in this case the Orion spacecraft would return on November 11, with a 109-minute launch window that would open at 2:52 p.m. (6:52 p.m. GMT). .

In the meantime, NASA is sticking with the plan to send SpaceX’s manned mission to the International Space Station (ISS), dubbed Crew-5, no earlier than 12:45 p.m. (4:45 p.m. GMT) on Monday, October 3.

The first launch attempt of Artemis I took place on August 29, but was canceled due to a failure of one of the 4 RS-25 engines of the powerful SLS rocket, which is 98 meters high. This was followed by a second attempt on September 3, suspended due to a liquid hydrogen leak.

The goal of the first Artemis mission is to test the capabilities of the SLS and the Orion spacecraft before a manned trip originally scheduled for 2024, which will be followed by a third in which for the first time since 1972 American astronauts , including a woman and a person of color, will walk on the lunar surface.

The Artemis I mission, which will take off without a crew, has a duration of 37 days, 23 hours and 53 minutes, during which time, removing round trips, the Orion spacecraft will be in orbit around the Moon. EFE


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