Upon arrival, the center stage spent the next few weeks on the VAB transfer channel, and was then hoisted to the top of the mobile launch pad to join the two solid rocket boosters already stacked at Gaowan 3.
“This it’s the first time a complete flight unit has been assembled, “Sean Arrieta of NASA’s Earth System Exploration told Space.com in a recent interview. “We are all very excited.”
This summer, as part of the Artemis 1 mission, the agency’s new Orion spacecraft will cooperate with the SLS and be ready for an unmanned test flight around the moon later this year. If all goes according to plan, agency officials said the flight could take place in early November.
View of two NASA lunar rockets: the Apollo Saturn V booster (left) and the Artemis 1 space launch system center booster (right).
View of two NASA moon rockets: the Apollo Saturn V booster (left) and the Artemis 1 Space Launch System
main booster (right).
(Image source: NASA) Center stage
is the backbone of the rocket and is 212 feet (65 meters) high. Workers used a 325-ton crane to lift the central platform into the air and transfer it to a nearby elevated structure. From there, it is stacked on its mobile launch pad and between two solid 177-foot (54 m) rocket boosters. Northrop Grumman makes the
. The thruster is a longer version of a solid rocket engine that once powered the agency’s space shuttle fleet. In fact, each of these five parts performed multiple space shuttle missions before being converted for use in the SLS program.
Click here to view more videos from Space.com… The successful stacking of the
center stage is only the beginning of the process of fully assembling the rocket before launch. If everything goes according to plan, by August, we can see a complete launch system with the Orion spacecraft on top.
NASA will move the 322-foot (98-meter) rocket to platform 39B for pre–flight testing in September or October. At that time, the crew will run the launch countdown program and refueling exercises.
related: NASA launched the first SLS giant rocket for lunar flight
in a key engine test.
NASA’s space launch system rocket is powered by four RS25 engines, which are manufactured by Aerojet Rocketdyne and It was overhauled after the space shuttle program ended.
NASA’s space launch system rocket is powered by four RS25 engines, which were manufactured by Aerojet Rocketdyne and were overhauled after the space shuttle program ended.
(Image source: NASA)
Four RS25 engines, the same as those used to power the space shuttle, will power the SLS, while the dual solid rocket booster will generate more than 8 million pounds of thrust. NASA tested an engine made by Aerojet Rocketdyne earlier this year as part of a series of ecological performance tests. Test
ended the heat test at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Mississippi on March 18, repeating the same test that ended in early January. To simulate an actual launch, the engine fired and burned for more than 8 minutes while firmly fixed on the dyno.
Space Launch System center amplifier was stacked on its mobile launch pad on June 13, prior to its launch in November. The
Space Launch System center amplifier was stacked on its mobile launch pad on June 13, prior to its launch in November. (Image Source: NASA)
This is the main activity of the spacecraft: the last major obstacle that must be cleared before launch day. NASA is expected to launch SLS and the Orion Crew Module during an unmanned test flight around the moon in late November.
The mission, called Artemis 1, will last more than three weeks and will pave the way for Artemis 2, which will fly four crew members around the moon in 2023.
In addition, the agency plans to begin landing astronauts Yuenan near the moon. With the help of a commercially developed lunar lander. In April of this year, NASA selected the first lander, a version of the SpaceX spacecraft, as the first Artemis astronauts to land on the moon.
in the photo: NASA’s Kennedy Space Center modified the launch pad 39B for Orion
. According to NASA, the rest of the construction should be very fast, and the launch will take place in November. The agency said the next step is to install the Launch Vehicle Stage Adapter (LVSA), and then the upper stage, called the Temporary Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (ICPS), which is a hydrogen fuel upper stage. After
, staff will install a frame to simulate Orion’s weight for further testing before installing the actual Orion in late summer.
“We are happy to finally have all the hardware in Florida,” Arietta told Space.com after hitting the main stage. “We encountered some challenges in the process, but we are confident that we can launch this year.”