NASA’s ‘mega moon rocket’ has completed all performance tests, and engineers are now analyzing the Space Launch System (SLS) performance in preparation for the first crewed Artemis missions.
The Space Launch System (SLS) rocket’s performance during NASA’s Artemis I launch on November 16 of last year is still being evaluated by engineers at the space agency.
NASA’s Space Launch System rocket, per the SLS Programme Manager John Honeycutt, “has laid the foundation for the Artemis Generation and the future of spaceflight in deep space.”
‘There is engineering and an art to successfully building and launching a rocket, and the analysis on the SLS rocket’s inaugural flight puts NASA and its partners in a good position to power missions for Artemis II and beyond,” he added.
According to the early post-flight data, all SLS systems operated flawlessly, and the designs are ready to support a crewed mission on Artemis II.
More than 1,000 sensors and 45 miles of cable are included on the Space Launch System (SLS) core stage of the NASA rocket.
The Artemis I flight test was the only way to gather real data on how the rocket performed during events like booster separation.
“The data from Artemis I is critical in building confidence in this rocket to send humanity to the Moon,” said SLS lead engineer John Blevins.
The SLS team will use what we learn from this flight test to better future rocket flights, and they are already applying what they’ve learned about operations and assembly to streamline future missions.
Cameras and sensors also enabled teams to monitor the rocket’s performance during its in-space maneuvers.
Engineers also monitored the extreme temperatures and sounds the rocket experienced just after liftoff.
Through Artemis, NASA will set the stage for a sustained lunar presence and act as a stepping stone for astronauts traveling to Mars by putting the first woman and the first person of color on the Surface of the moon.