NASA said Friday it would attempt to launch its Moon mega rocket in November, without pinning a precise date for the much-delayed Artemis 1 mission.
The US space agency, which had to postpone its final launch attempt due to the massive Hurricane Ian that hit Florida this week, announced it was preparing its next launch window for November 12 to November 27.
“Over the next few days,” NASA said in a blog post, the team will assess conditions and necessary work and “set a specific date for the next launch attempt.”
Officials had so far refused to close the door completely on an earlier attempt in October.
The SLS rocket, the most powerful ever designed by NASA, had to be returned to its storage hangar at the Kennedy Space Center on Tuesday to protect it from the approach of Hurricane Ian.
The storm devastated parts of Florida, but the rocket itself was not damaged, NASA said.
Planning efforts for the November launch window will “give Kennedy employees time to meet the needs of their families and homes after the storm” and leading up to the next mission attempt.
Lifting the 98-meter-tall (320 feet) rocket and transporting it to the launch pad before being configured for takeoff will also take days.
NASA has already made two attempts to launch the unmanned Artemis 1 mission in late August and early September, but both had to be canceled at the last minute due to technical issues.
SLS has been in development for over a decade and has never flown before.
Fifty years after the last mission of the Apollo program, Artemis is NASA’s new flagship program.
Artemis 1 will be used to ensure that the Orion capsule, at the top of the rocket, can safely transport a crew to the moon in the future.
NASA moon rocket back in hangar, launch unlikely until November
© 2022 AFP
Quote: NASA looks to November for lunar rocket launch attempt (2022, October 1), retrieved October 1, 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-10-nasa-eyes-november-moon-rocket.html
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