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TECHNOLOGY

What to know about NASA’s Artemis I lunar mission pre-launch events and coverage

After the initial launch was postponed the new launch is set for September 3. Find out all the details of NASA’s Artemis programme and its aims here.

Update:
After the initial launch was postponed the new launch is set for September 3. Find out all the details of NASA’s Artemis programme and its aims here.
CHANDAN KHANNAGetty

Artemis I will take off from Launch Complex 39B at Kennedy Space Center. The Space Launch System (SLS) rocket is capable of generating some 8.8 million pounds of thrust during liftoff, making it the most powerful NASA rocket to date.

The SLS will carry the Orion module, NASA’s new exploration spacecraft, into orbit before the rocket’s core stage separates from the spacecraft. The SLS’ interim cryogenic propulsion stage will then produce the thrust required to take Orion out of Earth orbit and towards the moon.

Once Orion reaches the moon, it will come to within 62 miles of the lunar surface, before settling into an orbit at an altitude of about 40,000 miles. After six days in lunar orbit, it will begin its journey back to Earth.

When is the launch?

Artemis I was scheduled to lift off from Launch Pad 39B at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Monday 29 August, but technical difficulties forced controllers to delay the launch. Operators found a component fuel leak on the launch pad and decided that they had no choice but to postpone the long-awaited event.

How can the launch be watched?

Despite Monday’s setback, the launch will still be broadcast by NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website, nasa.gov once the mechanical concerns have been assuaged.

Coverage will also be available on the agency’s Facebook, Twitch and NASA YouTube channel, as well as in 4k on NASA’s UHD channel.

We will also be hosting a live feed event right here on AS USA, bringing you all the latest information from from the Kennedy Space Center.

When will humans be back on the moon?

Artemis’ initial aim was to land humans on the moon in 2024, but NASA Administrator Bill Nelson admitted last November that this objective will not be met.

“2024 was not a goal that was really technically feasible,” Nelson told reporters. “We are estimating no earlier than 2025.”

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