May 19, 2022


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Third test of NASA Megarocket thwarted by hydrogen leak

Third test of NASA Megarocket thwarted by hydrogen leak

A NASA Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with the Orion spacecraft is seen aboard a mobile launcher at Launch Complex 39B, Monday, April 4, 2022.

NASA’s third attempt at Modified rehearsal The Space Launch System (SLS) was discontinued on Thursday When the liquid hydrogen leak was Found during tank operations. The space agency plans to conduct another lunar rocket test no later than April 21.

These are the latest setbacks in several setbacks to the missile test, including delays due to weather, malfunctioning ventilation fans, and LED issues.

All of the issues we’re facing are procedural and lessons learned,” Artemis mission director Mike Sarafin said during a press conference. Friday.

a The rehearsal takes place when the 322-foot rocket is full of fuel as it sits atop the launch pad, and the team performs a mock countdown to prepare for launch day. Rehearsal is necessary to launch Artemis I, an unmanned mission to the moon and back, and the first step to returning humans to the moon by 2026.

This is amazing The rehearsal was first scheduled for April 1, but was initially postponed due to Technical problems that prevented the missile crew from being loaded with fuel. Before the next test Date On April 11, the team discovered a valve defect, Which led them to modify the rehearsal and plan to supply only the primary stage for the SLS, Not the upper stage.

Thursday Third attempt Unfortunately it was not magic, Where the team discovered a liquid hydrogen leak from the servo’s mast tail, which connects the base of the portable actuator to the primary stage. Liquid hydrogen is one of the two propellants used for the rocket, and the other Being liquid oxygen.

By the time the rehearsal was stopped, about 49% of the tank was filled with liquid oxygen, And only 5% of the other tank is filled with liquid hydrogen. team successfully It was able to cool the lines used to load propellant into the upper stage, but was unable to flow any propellant into the stage due to a valve problem.

still, The team behind the SLS rocket says they’re not to give in. “I have no doubt that we will finish this trial campaign, “We’ll look at the hardware and data that will lead us to the next steps,” Artemis launch director Charlie Blackwell Thompson said during the conference call. We are going to launch this car… We will be ready to fly.”

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