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HomeNewsNASA: Artemis launch in October 'difficult' but not ‘off the table’

NASA: Artemis launch in October ‘difficult’ but not ‘off the table’


NASA will find it “‘difficult” to try again to launch its Moon rocket in October while a launch in November seems more feasible, as per a NASA official. In order to protect it from Hurricane Ian’s approach, NASA’s most potent rocket yet, the SLS, had to be brought back to its storage hangar for the night.

It will take days to raise the 320-foot-tall rocket, move it to the launch pad and then set it up for takeoff. The launch of the eagerly anticipated Artemis 1 mission will thus be severely delayed as a result of the most recent setback.

Also Read: NASA rolls back Artemis rocket as Hurricane Ian approaches

The next potential launch windows are October 17-31 and then November 12-27. The dates are based on the positions of the Earth and the Moon. “We know that the earliest it could go is late October, but more than likely we’ll go in the window in the middle of November,” NASA administrator Bill Nelson told CNN.

Jim Free, an associate administrator for NASA, said it would be “difficult”. However, as per Free, NASA is not taking “anything off the table”.

Also Read: NASA DART mission: Spacecraft slams into asteroid 9.6 million km away

On September 21, NASA successfully performed a crucial fuelling test for the enormous Space Launch System rocket to launch an unmanned spacecraft to orbit the moon. The purpose of the fuelling test was to see if NASA had successfully corrected the leak that prevented the rocket from launching on September 3. Despite certain leaks and technological difficulties, NASA claimed that the test succeeded in achieving all of its goals.

After the hurricane has gone, NASA will need to set aside some time to perform a challenging procedure in the storage hangar: changing the batteries in the rocket’s self-destruct system.

Also Read: This is how Mars looks: NASA James Webb Space Telescope images are here

Technical issues, such as a leak during fueling the rocket, previously forced the cancellation of two launch attempts, one at the end of August and the other at the start of September. Artemis 1, 50 years after the final Apollo mission, will be used to check that the Orion capsule is secure for bringing a crew to the Moon in the future.

(With agency inputs)

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