NASA aims to begin critical Artemis 1 lunar mission testing on today

NASA aims to begin critical Artemis 1 lunar mission testing on today
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This weekend, NASA will attempt another vital test of its Artemis 1 lunar mission.

Last Friday (April 1), NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC) in Florida began the Artemis 1 “wet dress rehearsal,” a practise run of the most crucial prelaunch tasks, including rocket fueling. Everything was scheduled to be finished in about 48 hours, but that didn’t happen because the Artemis 1 crew ran into many complications that caused the test to be delayed.

That pause was requested earlier this week to accommodate Ax-1, a private astronaut trip to the International Space Station that launched today (April 8) from a nearby pad at KSC. The Artemis 1 wet dress may resume operations now that Ax-1 is safely on its way.

NASA officials announced in a blog post yesterday that the test will resume with a “call to stations” at 5 p.m. EDT (2100 GMT) on Saturday (April 9). (April 7). The fueling of Artemis 1’s massive Space Launch System (SLS) rocket, as well as multiple practise countdowns, will take place on Monday (April 11) if everything goes according to plan.

However, agency officials cautioned that this deadline is only a guideline.

“Teams continue to troubleshoot and refine the test schedule to account for insights gained during the previous runs and activities,” NASA officials wrote via Twitter yesterday (opens in new tab).

The first flight of the SLS and NASA’s Artemis lunar exploration programme, Artemis 1, will launch an uncrewed Orion capsule on a month-long journey around the moon. The mission is scheduled to launch in June or later; NASA will not specify a target date until the wet dress rehearsal is completed and the data has been reviewed.

Artemis 2 will send men on a similar around-the-moon trip in 2024, and Artemis 3 will land astronauts near the lunar south pole in 2025 or 2026, if all goes well with Artemis 1.

Topics #Artemis 1 lunar mission #Kennedy Space Center #NASA

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