This is the result of a NASA flight readiness review conducted on Monday. The review was an in-depth assessment of the readiness of the 322-foot (98-meter) stack consisting of the Space Launch System rocket and the Orion spacecraft currently on the launch pad at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. .
The Artemis team is targeting its first two-hour launch window from 8:33 AM ET to 10:33 AM ET on Monday, August 29th. There are backup launch windows for 2 and 5 September.
The rocket pack arrived at the launch pad on August 17 after leaving the Vehicle Assembly Building after a 4-mile (6.4 km) ride aboard one of NASA’s giant Apollo-era crawlers from the assembly building to the launch pad – just like shuttle. Apollo Saturn V missions and rockets once did.
The unmanned Artemis I will go on a mission that will go beyond the moon and return to Earth. After launch, the spacecraft will enter a deep retrograde orbit around the Moon, traveling 1.3 million miles (2.1 million kilometers) over 42 days. Artemis I will land in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of San Diego on October 10th. Orion’s return will be swift and hotter than any spacecraft has ever experienced on its way back to Earth.
According to NASA, the Orion spacecraft will fly further than any spacecraft built for humans has ever flown, reaching 40,000 miles (64,000 kilometers) beyond the far side of the Moon.
There are no people on board, but the Orion will carry 120 pounds (54.4 kg) of souvenirs, including toys, Apollo 11 items, and three dummies.
Sitting in the Orion’s command chair will be Commander Munikin Campos, a mannequin in a suit that can collect data on what future human crews might experience during a lunar journey. The dummy will wear the new Orion Crew Survival System suit, designed for astronauts during launch and re-entry. The suit has two radiation sensors.
This mission will kick-start NASA’s Artemis program, which aims to return humans to the Moon and land the first woman and the first person of color on the lunar surface by 2025—and ultimately free up space for human exploration of Mars.
Artemis I will also conduct a number of science experiments, some of which will be installed after the rocket and spacecraft arrive at the launch pad.