The massif Space Launch System (SLS), is ready to leave his home in New Orleans for an epic journey that will culminate in a journey into space. The ultimate goal of NASA’s latest rocket is to transport astronauts to the moon and to more distant places. However, first, it must be tested.
The test flight, called Artemis 1, it will be carried out by the end of 2020, but officials of the American space agency have said that it could be postponed until 2021. The flight will send an Orion spacecraft around the Moon that will return to our planet again. To prepare for this trip, however, the rocket must arrive at the Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.
Transporting a 65-meter rocket is not easy, which is why it will travel to its destination by barge. In the future, all SLS rockets will fly into space from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. After Artemis I, NASA is planning a second test mission with humans on board in the next two years. Finally, the third mission (Artemis III) will bring astronauts to the moon in 2024.
The huge rocket will include four engines and two liquid propellant tanks. “I will call it the ninth wonder of the world“he declares Douglas Loverro, the new associate administrator of NASA’s exploration and human operations missions. The talk was more about the celebration than the announcements, and the discussion has left several worries in the air on the Artemis program.
In fact, NASA only has contracts with Boeing for the first two SLS missiles. But it is the third rocket in the series that will send astronauts to the moon in 2024 to achieve the agency’s much-touted goal. In addition, NASA has avoided offering a program for Artemis flights or a cost estimate for rockets. We’ll see.