Date set for next Artemis I dress rehearsal attempt

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — NASA has announced a date for their next attempt at the last major test ahead of a planned un-crewed mission around the moon.

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The countdown for the two-day test of the Artemis I system s now set to begin at 5 p.m. Saturday with the T-0 mark planned for 2:40 p.m. Monday.

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Known as a “wet dress rehearsal,” the test will run the Artemis I launch crew through the rocket fueling process and full launch countdown.

They’ll then practice recycling the countdown clock and draining the fuel tanks.

Just before the countdown reaches the point where the rocket’s engines would ignite, they’ll recycle the clock back to the T-10 minute point, then begin and halt the countdown again to practice the “scrub” procedure as well.

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A ground systems issue forced teams to scrub a scheduled dress rehearsal on Sunday. Then, on Monday afternoon, as crews began filling the rocket’s tank with 700,000 gallons of liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen, the test had to be called off again due to a vent valve issue.

The rehearsal is the last major test before the actual launch of the SLS rocket and Orion spacecraft around the moon.

Several days after the wet dress rehearsal, the integrated rocket and spacecraft will be rolled back to the Vehicle Assembly Building where technicians will remove sensors specifically for monitoring during the dress rehearsal, charge the system’s batteries, and run final checks before rolling it back out onto the launch pad one last time about a week before the launch.

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NASA will set a specific target launch date for the Artemis I after a review of the data from the rehearsal.

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