NASA ruled out the launch of the Artemis I mission in April; perhaps it will take place in May

(ORDO NEWS) — NASA Artemis I (Artemis 1) Mission Managers have updated the mission status ahead of the March delivery of the Space Launch System super-heavy rocket and the Orion spacecraft to Kennedy Space Center Site 39-B for a full rocket bench test. An assembly with a full refueling of fuel components, but without ignition, called wet dress rehearsal by foreign experts.

While the 6.7-kilometer journey to the launch pad is scheduled for 6 p.m. local time March 16, the agency will need a month or more to test and ship the rocket back to the assembly hangar before NASA gives permission for a launch attempt. Therefore, the April launch window can no longer be used for launching.

April is ruled out. We’re targeting the end of May for now,” said Tom Whitmyer, associate assistant administrator for NASA’s Space Exploration Systems Development. “But to be honest, it has to be done really carefully this time. We need these few weeks of testing to see if the rocket is ready for launch.”

The next starting ones open from May 7 to 21, from June 6 to 16 and from June 29 to July 12.

Much of the work being done at the assembly hangar will already be completed before the rocket is delivered to the test bench, Whitmyer said, including the latest major equipment test, which involved installing devices to detonate the rocket in the event of a launch cancellation.

“By completing these tests, we will be able to complete the rocket and prepare it for delivery to the launch pad,” he said.

This unmanned flight will be the first in a series of Artemis missions, while the second flight of this lunar program will not occur until May 2024.

This second space mission involves a flyby of the Moon without landing on its surface. It is not until a mission called Artemis III that NASA plans to land astronauts, including the first woman. According to NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, a third Artemis mission should not be expected before 2025.


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