NASA has revealed that it is targeting March 18 for the second hot fire test for the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket core stage. According to the announcement, the test will be conducted at the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi.
This latest announcement comes after NASA performed tests that demonstrated recently repaired liquid oxygen pre-valve was working correctly. During the repairing process, the team continued to prepare for the core stage and its four RS-25 engines and the B-2 test stand for the second hot fire test.
This hot fire is the last test before the Artemis I core stage is shipped to the agency’s Kennedy Space Center for assembly and integration with the rest of the rocket’s major elements and the Orion spacecraft. Exploration Ground Systems teams at Kennedy have stacked all parts of the solid rocket boosters for Artemis I in the Vehicle Assembly Building and are finishing up booster assembly. After the core stage arrives, it will be lifted and placed between the two boosters and attached at the core stage engine and intertank sections. Other parts of the rocket and the Orion spacecraft are also at Kennedy and are being prepared for final assembly and integration.
NASA’s SLS rocket is the most powerful rocket in the world, built to send both astronauts aboard Orion and supplies on missions to the Moon and beyond. The Green Run is a comprehensive test of the SLS core stage, a complex new rocket stage that not only includes four RS-25 engines and enormous propellant tanks that hold more than 700,000 gallons of super cold propellant, but also flight computers and avionics that control the first eight minutes of flight. The Green Run test series will help validate that the SLS core stage is ready for its first flight on Artemis I and subsequent missions.