After aborted SLS hot-fire test, NASA to try again
Washington, Jan 30 (IANS) NASA will conduct a second hot fire test for its first Space Launch System (SLS) mega rocket in February after the first attempt ended in an early shutdown, earlier than planned this month.
“NASA plans to conduct a second Green Run hot fire test as early as the fourth week in February with the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket’s core stage that will launch the Artemis I mission to the Moon,” the space agency said in a statement on Friday. NASA’s Artemis I mission is an uncrewed flight test that will launch Orion on the agency’s Space Launch System rocket to orbit the Moon and return to Earth.
The Green Run is a comprehensive assessment of the rocket’s core stage prior to launching Artemis missions.
While the first hot fire test marked a major milestone for the program with the firing of all four RS-25 engines together for the first time for about a minute, it ended earlier than planned.
After evaluating data from the first hot fire and the prior seven Green Run tests, NASA and core stage lead contractor Boeing determined that a second, longer hot fire test should be conducted and would pose minimal risk to the Artemis I core stage while providing valuable data to help certify the core stage for flight.Inspections showed the core stage hardware, including its engines, and the B-2 test stand is in excellent condition after the first hot fire test, and no major repairs are needed to prepare for a second hot fire test at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.
All SLS rockets use the same core stage design, so a second Green Run hot fire will reduce risk for not only Artemis I, but also for all future SLS missions.
The Green Run series of tests is designed to certify the core stage design and verify that the new stage is ready for flight. The hot fire test is the final Green Run test and will provide valuable data that minimises risk for US deep space exploration missions for years to come.
A second hot fire test is planned for about eight minutes to simulate the time amount of time it will take to send the rocket to space following launch.