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Why did NASA cancel the launch of Artemis I Moon for the second time?

For the second time this week, NASA canceled the launch of Artemis I on Saturday morning due to technical problems. The launch was originally planned for August 29, but will now have to be rescheduled again due to a fuel leak.

Saturday’s launch was called off when rocket operators sent an order to fill the rocket’s tank and sounded an alarm that there was a hydrogen leak. The launch team attempted various troubleshooting measures to fix the leak, but were unsuccessful. The rocket requires liquid hydrogen, so the leak will need to be sealed before launch.

Before the first mission attempt, former NASA Space Shuttle Program Manager Wayne Hale predicted uncertainty about the launch.

“I don’t want to bring Debbie down, but I rate the chances of #Artemis1 launching on Monday at about 50/50 not counting the weather. It is the first launch of a complex new rocket and there are likely to be bugs still to be ironed out. I’m sorry if that upsets people, but it’s better to be realistic.” Hale tweeted on August 27.

Artemis I is a lunar-orbiting mission that will test whether new rocket technology will be able to safely accommodate astronauts on subsequent missions that NASA has planned over the next several years to reinvigorate human exploration of the moon and Mars.

Casting attempts that require multiple attempts are not uncommon, and generally err on the side of caution. Space reporter Kenneth Chang compared Artemis I to a 2009 NASA mission with the Endeavor rocket that was only successful on its sixth attempt.

Why was the launch of the first Artemis I postponed?

The rocket used in Artemis I, called the Space Launch System, is the most powerful rocket NASA has yet to develop, and is fueled by burning roughly three million liters of liquid hydrogen and oxygen in four large engines under the rocket.

The engines must cool down during the countdown to prevent a system shock from launch and on August 29, prior to the initial planned launch, a temperature reading indicated that one of the engines was not cool enough. A hydrogen-related fuel leak also appeared during the first launch attempt, a problem NASA experienced while practicing protocols for the spring launch of the rocket.

Lightning and stormy weather at the launch site in Cape Canaveral, Florida. it appeared on Saturday, but NASA officials said they did not believe it would cause any interference. Ultimately, it was technical concerns with the engines that delayed the launch.

We’ll go when you’re ready. We’re not going until then, especially now on a test flight because we’re going to emphasize this, and test it, and test that heat shield and make sure it’s okay before we put four humans on it.” NASA Administrator Bill Nelson he said after the second release of Artemis I was cancelled.

When is the launch expected to happen now?

Although NASA has the opportunity to try to launch Artemis I again on September 5 or 6, the agency does not feel ready to launch on one of these days. At a news conference Saturday afternoon, Nelson and other NASA officials shared that the rocket team will continue to work diligently to repair the leak and that a complete and safe repair is their top priority.

“It was a much bigger leak,” Nelson said. “The techniques we used on Monday, for this magnitude of leak, just weren’t working in our favor.”

NASA will reassess the rocket’s condition and discuss a possible launch date next week, which likely won’t be until October at the earliest, when there’s a window of optimal weather conditions.

Until the next launch attempt, the rocket will have to leave the launch pad to the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB), the NASA engineering building where the rocket was assembled. Both the platform and the VAB are located in the Kennedy Space Center complex.

Artemis I will not carry passengers, but it will test the safety of the rocket for a future crew, as well as carrying 10 small satellites to collect scientific and technical information for potential discoveries. NASA has expressed great optimism about all three parts artemis programnamed to complement the famous Apollo program.

“With #Artemis, @NASA will land the first woman and first person of color on the Moon. Take the next big leap with us.” POT He has written on his Twitter profile.

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