Wed 17 August 2022:
NASA’s huge Space Launch System moon rocket, topped with an uncrewed astronaut capsule, began an hours-long journey to its launchpad on Tuesday night in preparation for the behemoth’s first test flight later this month.
The 98-meter-tall rocket is scheduled to go into orbit without a human crew on August 29. It will be a crucial and long-awaited demonstration mission to the moon for NASA’s Artemis program, the country’s multibillion-dollar effort to return people to the moon as training for visits to Mars.
Around 10 p.m. EDT (0200 GMT) on Tuesday, the Space Launch System left its assembly building at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida and started the six-kilometer (four-mile) journey to its launchpad. The Space Launch System has been developed over the previous ten years with the help of Boeing Co.
The rollout will take about 11 hours at less than 1 mph (1.6 kph).
The NASA Orion astronaut capsule, made by Lockheed Martin Corp., is perched atop the rocket. It is intended to split from the rocket in outer space, transport people to the moon, and then come together with another spacecraft to deliver astronauts to the lunar surface.
The Orion spacecraft will launch from the Space Launch System on August 29 for the Artemis 1 mission without any humans aboard. It will orbit the moon for 42 days before returning to Earth for a splashdown in the ocean.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration has backup launch dates on September 2 and September 5 in case bad launch weather or a minor technical issue prevents a launch on August 29.
SOURCE: INDEPENDENT PRESS AND NEWS AGENCIES
FOLLOW INDEPENDENT PRESS:
TWITTER (CLICK HERE)
FACEBOOK (CLICK HERE)
Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!