NASA has been working on calculating Artemis until the launch of Axiom – Spaceflight Now

The NASA Space Launch system for the Artemis 1 mission will land on deck 39B on Monday. Courtesy: NASA / Joel Kowsky

NASA officials said Tuesday they are standing still from a cryogenic loading test on the Space Launch System moon rocket until the launch of a commercial mission from a hostel at the Kennedy Space Center.

A numerical test was postponed Monday by what NASA officials believed was a minor problem, with oxygen water concerns and a manual valve left in the wrong setting before departure. of companies in the SLS advertising board.

The numerical costume training was a serious test before NASA completed the final preparations on the Space Launch System and Orion crew capsule. The massive rock, which stands 322 feet (98 meters) high, was set to launch before June during the untested flight of Artemis 1 around the moon, laying the groundwork for the upcoming lunar mission with astronauts on board.

NASA’s Kennedy crew launched about half of the SLS core stage’s 196,000-gallon liquid oxygen tank on Monday in the 39B launch pad, but cut the refill before burning 537,000 gallons. hydrogen fluid to the base base. The two diffusers are maintained at cryogenic temperatures – water oxygen at least 297 degrees Fahrenheit (min 183 degrees Celsius) and water hydrogen at least 423 degrees Fahrenheit (min 253 degrees Celsius).

The experiment was delayed for several hours due to the cessation of gaseous nitrogen supply at Florida spaceport. The gas is used to clean the parts of the SLS rocket to reduce the risk of fire when it consumes fuel.

The supply of nitrogen, supplied by Air Liquide from an outside plant, was returned to the pipeline after Monday morning, allowing the start -up team to begin preparations to load the propellants in the Space Launch System.

But before the tanking could begin, observers at the pad noticed that the water oxygen temperature was much higher than expected.

Charlie Blackwell-Thompson, director of NASA’s Artemis, said the computers had stopped the process due to concerns about geysering, which could occur when the heat waves are found. water oxygen in feed lines.

“You can make a big oxygen gas pump that can push fast,” he said. “He can do this geyser effect, if you want. The way we degrade is what we call a helium inject. It uses helium, and you put that into your feed line system and it helps to cool down. “

The method of incorporating helium into the flow of liquid oxygen is called an “anti-geyser” system.

“You don’t want a huge slug of warm LOX (oxygen water) going into your feeding system,” Blackwell-Thompson said. “We’re really looking at that because we want to make sure we’re not going to make that hot end. If you can make that big lump … it can be kicked out and then it gets messed up.”

The heat stress of the oxygen water caused the release team to redo their cryogenic processes. Several hours passed, before Blackwell-Thompson gave the “go” to continue operations Monday evening.

After starting to load the liquid oxygen, the engineers were ready to blow the liquid hydrogen into the main field, but an unresponsive window box that did not respond to the rocket prevented the companies from exploding. doing that step. Engineers investigated that problem with a pneumatic pressure board in the telephone release tower behind the rocket.

Blackwell-Thompson finished training the tankers around 5 pm EDT (2100 GMT), 10 hours after the time the tanking first began. The technicians went back to the starting point for inspection and decided on a hand -held box about the press pad that was left in the right place when the pad team left the hard drive earlier in the day. .

NASA officials said there were few problems encountered during Monday’s test, and there was nothing to do with any system on the rocket or plane. A final score test was canceled on Sunday due to the inadequacy of the fans who were required to melt parts of the telephone station and tower.

Tom Whitmeyer, head of NASA’s research development team, said Tuesday that he was “positive” about the fabrication process, with no problems being a testament.

“Most of what we’re collecting is little or no process,” said Mike Sarafin, director of NASA’s Artemis 1. “We have to change a little bit of some of the limits, or some of the setting or a little bit of time … As for the device, the rocket is good. The plane is good.

Global companies at Kennedy are also supplying developers on pad 39B to prepare for a new cryogenic tanking test in the coming days.

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon rolled to 39A on Tuesday in preparation for the private mission of Axiom’s Ax-1. Found: Stephen Clark / Spaceflight Now

NASA officials said Tuesday that the next SLS training countdown will come after the launch of a one -cent SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from a nearby 39A field. That voyage is set to begin Friday at 11:17 am EDT (1517 GMT) with an independent team of four astronauts heading into orbit on a 10 -day flight to the International Space Station.

The commercial aircraft is operated by Axiom Space, which expects to fly a series of private and aerospace cruises in the coming years. Axiom later planned to launch its own commercial module on the International Space Station, and then build its own private research facility in low Earth orbit.

The Ax-1 mission scheduled to launch this week is the international full-time mission to the International Space Station. The voyages were previously organized by a government agency, NASA or the Russian aircraft carrier Roscosmos.

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Follow Stephen Clark on Twitter: @ StephenClark1.

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