NASA will launch its massive rocket to fly around the moon ahead of schedule.
The agency had targeted the Artemis 1 Space Launch System (SLS) rocket on Thursday (Aug. 18) for the slow walk to Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39B before blasting off on Aug. 29. august But Monday (August). . 15), NASA announced (opens in a new tab) that plan changed, with the launch being moved to Tuesday evening (August 16). You can watch coverage of the launch starting at 3:00 PM EDT (1900 GMT) courtesy of NASA.
“@NASA is targeting a launch of @NASA_SLS as early as 9pm EDT on Tuesday, August 16 ahead of the launch of #Artemis I on August 29,” agency officials wrote in a tweet (opens in a new tab).
Live updates: NASA’s Artemis 1 moon mission
The Artemis 1 stack will roll to the launch pad atop the Apollo-era Transporter Crawler 2. Although the crawler and rocket will only travel 4 miles (6.4 kilometers), the trip will last eight to 12 hours, according to previous NASA statements.
This week’s launch will mark the rocket’s third parade from the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) to the launch pad. The previous launches, in March and June, preceded attempts at what NASA calls a wet dress rehearsal, during which the rocket is fueled and personnel go through all the pre-launch steps.
Both visits ended with the Artemis 1 stack, consisting of the SLS rocket and Orion capsule, making its way to the massive VAB for adjustments and preparation work.
Today we are very ready!! 👏 Crawler-transporter 2 has begun its march to the vehicle assembly building, in what could be called the first move to launch Artemis I! pic.twitter.com/Bwxtk2p2NxAugust 15, 2022
This time, if all goes well, the rocket will make a much more dramatic exit from the launch pad, blasting off on an unmanned test mission around the Moon that NASA hopes will pave the way for today’s astronauts to put feet on the moon The launch could happen as early as August 29; additional launch opportunities are available on September 2nd and 5th.
Depending on the launch date, the Artemis 1 mission will last between 39 and 42 days, agency officials said. During that time, NASA will be able to assess how the Orion capsule is doing in space before its first manned flight, Artemis 2, which is scheduled to launch in 2024.
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