NASA begins assembling the rocket for the Artemis moon mission

James Marshall
November 29, 2020

NASA engineers have started collecting the enormous rocket meant to take the main lady to the moon not long from now as a feature of the Artemis program.

Stacking operations began on November 19 with engineers transporting a booster segment from the Rotation, Processing and Surge Facility to the 525-foot-tall Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB).

NASA's Artemis I mission is expected to launch in 2021 With two experimental flights around the moon without astronauts.

The SLS consists of a giant, 65m (212ft) - long core stage with four engines that's flanked by the twin solid fuel boosters.

This can produce a huge 8.8 million pounds of thrust force that will be enough to put astronauts into orbit.

The first of two Artemis I aft booster segments for the Space Launch System is lowered onto the mobile launcher in High Bay 3 of the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on November 23, 2020. They provide 75% of the vehicle's thrust at lift-off.

The mobile launcher they are stacked on is 115 m (380 ft) high, which is used to process and deploy the SLS before moving it to the launch pad.

When the SLS launches the boosters burn six tons of solid, aluminum-based impulse every second.

Andrew Shroble, an integrated operations flow manager with Jacobs, a company working with NASA on the Artemis program said- "Stacking the first piece of the SLS rocket on the mobile launcher marks a major milestone for the Artemis Program".

It is expected that the first woman and next man will be sent to the moon by 2024 and the rocket plays a vital part in NASA's Artemis lunar exploration program. The orange foam covered core stage which is the other big part of the SLS is now undergoing a programme of tests called the Green Run at NASA's Stennis Space Center in Mississippi.

"It shows that the mission is really taking shape and will soon move towards the launch pad".

Orion will not carry any crew on that mission called Artemis-1. It will be used to check out the vehicle's performance before humans are allowed onboard for the Artemis-2 mission, now scheduled for 2023.

This was followed by Artemis-3 in 2024, the first landing on the lunar surface in 1972 after Apollo 17.

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Other reports by Click Lancashire

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