POT plans to launch today unmanned mission Artemis Ia potential big step for the space agency as it promotes send astronauts to the moon for the first time since 1972
Fuel leaks and a possible crack discovered during final lift preparations threatened to delay the launch of NASA’s powerful rocket into the new moon on Monday morning during its test flight from three test dummies on board.
How precious minutes ticked by POT repeatedly stopped and started refueling Space launch system a rocket with almost 1 million gallons of ultra-cold hydrogen and oxygen due to a leak. The gas station was already late by almost an hour due to a thunderstorm at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
The leak appeared in the same place where I saw the page during the dress rehearsal back in the spring.
Then a second apparent valve leak was discovered.
Later in the morning, a crack or some other defect was found in the main stage, a large orange fuel tank with four main engines, and frost formed around the suspicious area, NASA officials said. Engineers began to study the build-up.
The rocket was supposed to launch with a mission launch a crewed capsule into orbit around the moon. The launch represents a major milestone in America’s quest to return astronauts to the lunar surface for the first time since the end of the Apollo program 50 years ago.
NASA Assistant Director of Launch, Jeremy Graeber, said after repeated problems with the first leak that the space agency would have to decide whether to proceed with the launch on Monday morning. “We have a lot of work to do to achieve this,” Graeber warned.
If the launch on Monday does not take place, the next attempt will not be earlier. Friday is the earliest. The 322-foot (98-meter) rocket is the most powerful NASA ever built, surpassing even the No. 1 Saturn V in strength. Apollo astronauts on the moon.
There were no astronauts inside Orion rocket capsule. Instead, test dummies, equipped with sensors to measure vibration, radiation and other conditions, were ready for a six-week mission that would culminate in a splashdown in the Pacific Ocean in October.
Despite the fact that no one was on board, thousands of people gathered on the shore to watch the rocket take off. Deputy President Kamala Harris expected among VIPs.
The launch is the first flight of NASA’s 21st century lunar exploration program, named Artemis after Apollo’s mythological twin sister.
If the test is successful, astronauts will board for a second flight and circle the moon and back as early as 2024. Landing on the moon of two people can take place by the end of 2025..
Monday’s problems were reminiscent of NASA’s space shuttle era, when leaks of hydrogen fuel disrupted the countdown and delayed a series of launches as far back as 1990.
Launch director Charlie Blackwell-Thompson and her team also had to contend with a communications problem with the Orion capsule.
The engineers tried to understand 11 minute delay in the communications links between Launch Control and Orion that surfaced late Sunday evening. Although the problem was fixed by Monday morning, NASA needed to know why it had occurred before launching.