NASA delays critical SLS test due to technical complications

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NASA has suspended a critical test of the gigantic Space Launch System (SLS). On Sunday, the US space agency planned to refuel the rocket and do a countdown, two procedures that will be replicated on the day of the launch of the long-awaited Artemis I mission, but has had to delay its schedule due to technical complications. She will try again later this Monday.

Before loading 700,000 gallons of liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen into the SLS began, NASA discovered that the mobile launcher system had lost pressurization capabilities. Failure, as explained the agency in the blog of the Artemis Program, was based on a vital fan system for the safety of the rocket, which is used for pressurization and prevents the entry of dangerous gases.

A weekend with several problems

After detecting the aforementioned failure, the NASA teams concluded that staff could not work safely with the loading of the propellants in the core stage of the rocket and the interim cryogenic propulsion stage (ICPS). “The teams will meet to determine the next steps and establish a plan moving forward. The next attempt to fill the tank will be on Monday, April 4,” said the agency.

At the time of this writing, the mission management team has given the go-ahead to proceed with filling the tank. However, the resumption of the load is subject to other complementary processes, such as the restoration of the gaseous nitrogen system that is responsible for promoting a non-flammable environment inside the SLS rocket. Once everything is ready, the countdown will resume.

When propellant loading operations begin, liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen will flow into the rocket’s core stage and interim cryogenic propulsion stage tanks. The team, after the problem that arose on Sunday, will also perform leak checks to ensure that propellant loading is done as expected and you will be able to evaluate the overall effectiveness of the test.

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The last few hours have been particularly intense for the NASA teams involved in the SLS tests. Last Saturday, a strong electrical storm hit the John F. Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The complex has six 180-meter towers that are part of its lightning protection system, explain. This was effective when, during the night, four lightning bolts struck near launch pad 39B.

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NASA has suspended a critical test of the gigantic Space Launch System (SLS). On Sunday, the US space agency planned…

NASA has suspended a critical test of the gigantic Space Launch System (SLS). On Sunday, the US space agency planned…

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