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Space & Astronomy

NASA set to roll world's largest rocket out to the launch pad

March 17, 2022 | Comment icon 15 comments

The rocket is even larger than the Saturn V. Image Credit: NASA
The first mission of NASA's Artemis moon program will be launching within the next few months.
It has been a very long time - more than 50 years in fact - since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin set foot on the lunar surface as part of NASA's historic Apollo 11 mission in 1969.

Within just three years, however, the incentive to keep sending humans to the Moon was gone (as was the budget necessary to do so), resulting in a hiatus lasting several decades.

Now at last, it looks like this hiatus may finally be coming to an end, with the first mission of NASA's brand new lunar program - Artemis 1 - set to launch in just a few months' time.

Because this is the first mission there won't actually be astronauts on board. Instead, it will serve as a demonstration of the technology - traveling out to lunar orbit and then back over a period of 3 weeks.
Today the fully stacked rocket - which consists of the Space Launch System (SLS) and Orion spacecraft - will be heading out to the launch pad to begin preliminary launch rehearsals.

It is the largest rocket that has ever existed - even larger than the Apollo program's Saturn V.

Watching it roll out will certainly be a sight to behold.

You'll be able to see it on the live feed below from 5pm EDT (9pm GMT) tonight.

Source: | Comments (15)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #6 Posted by AnthonyS 4 months ago
Comment icon #7 Posted by Still Waters 4 months ago
Latest: NASA rules out April for Artemis I launch, could target May NASA mission managers updated Artemis I progress ahead of the March rollout of the massive Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft to Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39-B for what the agency calls a wet dress rehearsal. While it's targeting March 16 at 6 p.m. for the 322-foot-tall rocket to make the 4.2-mile journey to the pad, the agency will need a month or more for testing and a rollback to the Vehicle Assembly Building before NASA signs off on a launch attempt. So an April launch window has been taken off the boa... [More]
Comment icon #8 Posted by Still Waters 4 months ago
Your name can fly around the moon on NASA's Artemis 1 mission You can send your name on a trip around the moon with just a few clicks of your keyboard. NASA is inviting people to put their names on a flash drive that will launch on the agency's Artemis 1 mission, which will send an uncrewed Orion capsule around the moon and back a few months from now. Coming aboard in this manner is easy and free; just click the "get boarding pass" button at this NASA page.
Comment icon #9 Posted by Still Waters 4 months ago
NASA’s Gigantic Crawler on the Move As Rollout of Mega Moon Rocket Inches Closer Yesterday, engineers and technicians at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida drove Crawler Transporter-2, which will carry NASA’s Moon rocket to the launch pad, to the doors of the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB). Soon, the 6.6-million-pound crawler will go inside the VAB and slide under the Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft placed on the Mobile Launcher. Technicians will finish up preparations to transport the rocket traveling at a top speed of 1 mph to Launch Complex 39B for a wet dress rehearsal... [More]
Comment icon #10 Posted by Desertrat56 3 months ago
NASA Atemis 1 moon megarocket rools out to the lalunch pad today CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida — The first mission in NASA's Artemis moon program is set to roll out to the launch pad today (March 17).  More than 50 years after NASA landed the first humans on the moon with Apollo 11, the agency is gearing up to launch its next human lunar missions as part of the Artemis program. And the program's first mission, Artemis 1, will take a big step toward launch today, when the mission's rocket and spacecraft will roll ... [More]
Comment icon #11 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 3 months ago
Nope, Starship will take many test flights until it is operational, SLS/Orion will, if all goes well, be operational after it's first test flight. NASA and SpaceX work very differently. SpaceX launches expecting failure. It then fixes whatever failed and launches again. It may take many launches before success. NASA, on the otherhand, test and test multiple times to ensure that their vehicles should work first time. Starship and Artemis I may both be sitting on the pad awaiting there first launches later this year but NASA expects their mission to succeed, SpaceX expects theirs to fail. There ... [More]
Comment icon #12 Posted by Hammerclaw 3 months ago
It doesn't have one, yet. Besides, if it's going to fly all the way to the moon and land, it's doesn't even need Artemis. NASA's way is obsolete--even Russia has a better system. Boeing is doing it NASA's way and neither has put a man in orbit. Space can't be subject to the whim of politicians, anymore, nor can craft be built, efficiently and economically, by egalitarian government committee. SpaceX is an investment in the future, whereas NASA is a taxpayer funded charity that squanders billions.
Comment icon #13 Posted by Jon the frog 3 months ago Again scrubbed... fudge.
Comment icon #14 Posted by Still Waters 2 months ago
Fuel leak thwarts NASA's dress rehearsal for moon rocket NASA's latest attempt to fuel its huge moon rocket for a countdown test was thwarted Thursday by a hazardous hydrogen leak, the latest in a series of vexing equipment trouble. The launch team had just begun loading fuel into the core stage of the rocket when the leak cropped up. This was NASA's third shot at a dress rehearsal, a required step ahead of a test flight to the moon.
Comment icon #15 Posted by Still Waters 28 days ago
NASA targets June 5 for redo of Artemis moon rocket dress rehearsal NASA discovered a bevy of headaches in its first three tries to run through a dress rehearsal countdown of the Artemis I moon rocket at Kennedy Space Center earlier this year. Now it's ready for attempt No. 4. The agency is targeting a call-to-stations on Sunday, June 5, with a start of rollout at midnight, June 6, for the 4.4-mile, 11-hour journey from the Vehicle Assembly Building back to Launch Pad 39-B.

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