A lightning hardly missed the SLS rocket

The presented picture was taken on August 27 on the territory of the Kennedy Space Center. That day there was a severe thunderstorm at Cape Canaveral. One of the lightningі hit the LC-39B launch complex, where the SLS booster rocket is installed, preparing for launch.

A lightning strike near the SLS rocket. Source: NASA/Bill Ingalls

SLS was saved by one of the surrounding launch pad protective towers with a lightning rod. It took the entire discharge and the giant rocket left unharmed, giving NASA the opportunity to continue preparations for the launch.

This is not the first time that lightning nearly derailed a NASA lunar expedition. The previous similar incident happened in November 1969. Then, during the launch of the Apollo 12 mission, two lightning bolts hit the Saturn V rocket at once. This led to the failure of the ship’s fuel cells, resulting failure of almost all electrical systems inside it.

Fortunately, this did not affect the navigation of the Saturn V itself, and the rocket continued its flight along the given trajectory. This gave engineers time to understand the situation and tell the astronauts what needed to be done to restore the normal operation of all systems of the ship. You can learn about the main goals and objectives of the Artemis I mission from our article.