Hexbyte Glen Cove Uncrewed Artemis I mission to Moon pushed back

Hexbyte Glen Cove

NASA’s giant SLS rocket will be used for the Artemis mission to take humans back to the Moon.

The first mission in NASA’s program to take humans back to the Moon has been delayed until spring at the earliest, the US space agency said Wednesday, saying it needed more time to complete safety checks.

The Artemis I launch, initially scheduled for late 2021 and then postponed twice more, will now happen no earlier than April.

“Teams are taking operations a step at a time to ensure the integrated system is ready to safely launch the Artemis I mission. NASA is reviewing launch opportunities in April and May,” NASA said in a statement.

Artemis I will be an uncrewed flight test, but will signal the real start of the program, which could eventually see the first woman and the first person of color to step foot on the Moon.

Artemis I also will be the first flight of the massive Space Launch System (SLS) rocket, which will carry the Orion capsule to the Moon, where it will be put into orbit before returning to Earth.

The testing of the SLS system, which had been set for this month, is now expected to take place at Kennedy Space Center in Florida in March, NASA said.

For that test, the rocket will be moved to the , fueled up and the launch sequence initiated—except for the actual take-off.

This test will then help the US agency set an actual launch date.

There is no “specific” issue that sparked the additional delays, Tom Whitmeyer, the deputy associate administrator for exploration systems development at NASA Headquarters in Washington, told reporters.

“It could be something as simple as a scratch that needs to be polished out or some paint that needs to be fixed. There’s just a lot of that—it’s a really big vehicle,” he said.

A few months ago, a government audit indicated that Artemis I would likely take place “in the summer of 2022.”



© 2022 AFP

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Hexbyte Glen Cove US targeting Feb. 2022 to launch new lunar program Artemis

Hexbyte Glen Cove

A NASA employee holds the official Artemis mission patch at NASA Plum Brook Station in Sandusky, Ohio.

NASA is aiming to launch its uncrewed lunar mission Artemis 1 in February next year, the space agency said Friday, the first step in America’s plan to return humans to the Moon.

The agency had initially hoped to launch the by the end of this year, with astronauts set to walk on the Moon by 2024.

It achieved a major milestone Wednesday when it stacked the Orion crew capsule atop its Space Launch System megarocket, which now stands 322 feet (98 meters) tall inside the Vehicle Assembly Building at NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

After further tests, it will be wheeled out to the launchpad for a “wet dress rehearsal” in January, with the first window for launch opening in February, officials told reporters on a call.

“The February launch period opens on the 12th and our last opportunity in February is on the 27th,” said Mike Sarafin, Artemis 1 mission manager. The next windows are in March and April.

These potential launch periods are dependent on orbital mechanics and the relative position of the Earth with respect to the Moon. The mission duration is expected to be four to six weeks.

NASA will also deploy small satellites, known as CubeSats, to perform experiments and technology demonstrations.

NASA achieved a major milestone when it stacked the Orion crew capsule atop its Space Launch System megarocket.

Artemis 2 is then scheduled for 2023 and Artemis 3 for the following year, when humans will walk on the Moon for the first time since 1972. Both missions are now likely to be pushed back, however.

NASA says the moonwalkers will include the first woman and first person of color to make the trip.

The is seeking to establish a sustainable presence on the Moon as well as use the lessons it learns to plan a crewed trip to Mars in the 2030s.

Selfies with the Moon

Orion first flew into in 2014, launched by a Delta IV rocket, making two circumnavigations of Earth and testing its heat shield on re-entry into the atmosphere.

But this time, NASA’s Sarafin said, the capsule will travel much faster and the temperature will be much higher when it returns from the Moon.

Artemis 1 has several objectives: to demonstrate Orion’s ability to return from the Moon and operate in where it is “much colder than in low Earth orbit,” and to successfully recover the spacecraft, he added.

The mission also plans to study radiation and take selfies of the capsule with the Moon in the background.



© 2021 AFP

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US targeting Feb. 2022 to launch new lunar program Artemis (2021, October 23)
retrieved 23 October 2021
from https://phys.org/news/2021-10-feb-lunar-artemis.html

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part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

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Hexbyte Glen Cove NASA targeting Feb. 2022 to launch new lunar program Artemis

Hexbyte Glen Cove

A NASA employee holds the official Artemis mission patch at NASA Plum Brook Station in Sandusky, Ohio.

NASA said Friday it is now targeting February 2022 for the uncrewed lunar mission Artemis 1, the first step in America’s plan to return humans to the Moon later this decade.

The had initially wanted to launch the by the end of this year, with astronauts on the ground by 2024 on Artemis 3, but the timeline has slipped back.

It achieved a major milestone Wednesday when it stacked the Orion crew capsule atop its Space Launch System megarocket, which now stands 322 feet (98 meters) tall inside the Vehicle Assembly Building at NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

After further tests, it will be wheeled out to the for a final test known as the “wet dress rehearsal” in January, with the first window for launch opening in February, officials told reporters on a call.

“The February launch period opens on the 12th and our last opportunity in February is on the 27th,” said Mike Sarafin, Artemis 1 manager.

The next windows are in March and then April.

These potential launch periods are dependent on orbital mechanics and the relative position of the Earth with respect to its .

The mission duration is expected to be four to six weeks.

It will also deploy a number of small satellites, known as CubeSats, to perform experiments and technology demonstrations.

Although likely to be pushed back, Artemis 2 is technically scheduled for 2023 and Artemis 3 for 2024, humanity’s return to the Moon for the first time since the Apollo 17 mission in 1972.

NASA says the moonwalkers will include the first woman and first person of color to make the trip.

The agency is seeking to establish a sustainable presence on the Moon, and use the lessons it learns to plan a crewed trip to Mars in the 2030s.



© 2021 AFP

Citation:
NASA targeting Feb. 2022 to launch new lunar program Artemis (2021, October 22)
retrieved 23 October 2021
from https://phys.org/news/2021-10-nasa-feb-lunar-artemis.html

This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no
part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

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