BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — NASA conducted a critical test of its mega moon rocket Wednesday.
Teams had to make repairs because of a hydrogen leak after the agency’s last launch attempt, but those repairs didn’t prevent another leak Wednesday.
However, unlike the last Artemis I launch attempt, teams were able to reseat a seal and manage the leak, allowing them to continue fueling the Space Launch System rocket.
“Right now, things are looking really good,” Dr. Ken Kremer of Space UpClose said. “At this moment, the core stage is fully fueled with liquid oxygen, liquid hydrogen, and the fuel leak is down to a very manageable half a percent.”
The test is critical to firming up NASA”s next launch attempt for its un-crewed mission around the moon.
Artemis I will test the capabilities of both the SLS rocket and Orion spacecraft for future missions with astronauts.
“They’ve still got to do a lot of data analysis, and they’re running up against the clock,” Kremer said. “It’s getting a little tight, and everything else has to go perfectly today.”
The agency started fueling the Space Launch System rocket at 7:15 a.m.
If everything works out and no issues are found, the earliest Artemis I can launch is next week on Sept. 27.
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