NASA’s Michoud facility to unveil final stage of rocket for next moon mission
NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) -NASA leaders and astronauts at the Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans are hosting “Artemis Day” Monday.
Engineers say they have completed the rocket that will orbit the moon. NASA’s Space Launch System is the size of a 38-story building and will produce 8.8 million pounds of maximum thrust at launch.
NASA will send the rocket into orbit, making it the fastest rocket in NASA history.
Earlier this year, NASA administrators says the purpose of the Artemis and the astronaut’s mission is to test the moon’s resources. The goal is to have the first woman and next man land on the moon by 2024.
To complete assembly of the stage, technicians now are attaching the engines to propulsion and avionics systems inside the core stage, which also houses the flight computers that control the rocket during its first eight minutes of flight.
In December, engineers will perform testing on all the avionics and electrical systems. Then, NASA’s barge, Pegasus, will transport the completed core stage from Michoud to Stennis for the Green Run test series in 2020.
The 212-foot-tall core stage, comprised of two liquid propellant tanks and four RS-25 engines, is the powerhouse of the SLS rocket. It is the largest, most complex rocket stage NASA has built since the Saturn V stages that powered the Apollo missions to the Moon.
SLS and Orion, along with the Gateway in orbit around the Moon, are NASA’s backbone for deep space exploration and the Artemis program, which will send the first woman and next man to the lunar surface by 2024. SLS is the only rocket that can send Orion, astronauts, and supplies to the Moon on a single mission.
Copyright 2019 WVUE. All rights reserved.