NASA may try to send its new mega-rocket to the moon on September 23 or 27, after it was twice thwarted by technical problems, the US space agency’s senior official Jim Free announced during a briefing on Thursday. .
This much-anticipated test flight of the Artemis 1 mission, without a crew on board, was supposed to test the SLS rocket (for the Space Launch System) in real conditions and test the Orion capsule at its summit, where astronauts would walk in the future.
Frei said a possible shooting window on September 23 would open at 6:47 a.m. local time, while the 27th would open at 11:37 a.m. local time.
A planned launch from Kennedy Space Center in Florida was canceled at last minute on Saturday for the second time in a week, a setback that delayed the actual launch of the US program to the moon Artemis.
During the process of filling the rocket tanks, a fuel leak occurred early in the morning.
The orange and white SLS rocket, which has yet to fly, has been in development for more than a decade to become the world’s most powerful.
Fifty years after the last Apollo mission, the Orion capsule on top of the Artemis 1 rocket can be verified as safe to carry astronauts to the moon in the future.
For this first mission, Orion will travel 64,000 kilometers behind the Moon, the furthest of any living spacecraft so far.
The main objective was to test the largest heat shield ever built. When it returns to the Earth’s atmosphere, it will endure a speed of 40,000 km per hour and half as hot as the surface of the Sun.
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