Launch of the SLS lunar rocket is planned no earlier than summer

NASA engineers reported that the elimination of all malfunctions detected in the lunar rocket SLS will take weeks. Therefore, it is unlikely that its start will take place before the middle of summer.

Start of SLS is postponed. Source: Р

Start is postponed until the summer

On Monday, April 18, NASA engineers announced that it would be very difficult to have time to prepare the Space Launch System (SLS) lunar rocket for launch by the launch window, which would open in early June. Therefore, the start dates from the end of June to mid-July are more realistic.

The SLS rocket, the size of a 30-storey skyscraper, spent the entire last month on the launch pad. Engineers tested its systems in conditions close to real preparation for launch. However, serious shortcomings were discovered in the process, which did not allow the tests to be brought to the “10 seconds to start” mark, as planned.

In particular, fuel leakage from the tanks was detected. As a result, it was not possible to refuel the carrier completely. On Friday, April 15, the rocket began to be slowly rolled into the assembly shop for repair work.

When will SLS actually be launched

Restoring the operation of all rocket systems is not such an easy task as it seems. It will spend several weeks in the hangar, so the hope of launching in the May launch window has finally evaporated. But even after the repair, there will be no launch. 

Instead, the SLS will be rolled out to the start again and will begin to perform the check that failed in March — April. But some problems may arise again. According to NASA management, this can be repeated 5-6 more times.

However, it remains unclear how this situation fits in with NASA’s plans to launch the first manned mission to the Moon in 2024, and to land on the Earth satellite in 2025. Even the current test mission may not even start this year.

According to Р