NASA’s Mega Lunar Rocket Engines (Artemis 1) test was unexpectedly short.
NASA’s deep space reconnaissance rocket built by Boeing briefly fired all four engines of the massive rocket on Saturday.
However, after the ignition, the test was unexpectedly short. This means keeping a test planned to take people to the moon and delayed by the US government program for years, and it is remarkable. This test, conducted by NASA at the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi, took about 1 minute.
“Today was a good day,” NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine told a press conference after the test. He explained that they have a lot of data behind them that they can sort out to determine if a new action is needed. He said that in this way, they could launch the rocket in November 2021 and that there was no problem. Before the test, Boeing and NASA had the possibility to delay the first launch to 2022 because the test could be repeated. However, such a situation does not appear for now. NASA’s SLS program manager, John Honeycutt, also stated that post-test data review is ongoing and the public will be informed of hot developments.
NASA’s SLS program is just three years behind the planned level and exceeds the budget by approximately $ 3 billion. For this reason, critics also recommend that NASA turn to different alternatives. Critics arguing that NASA should move in favor of newer commercial alternatives that promise lower cost, and that core technologies of launch rockets, which cost $ 1 billion per mission, would be more accurate for now. How the company will respond to these recommendations and criticisms is still unknown. However, as it is understood from the statements, NASA’s continuation of the tests means that they have closed their ears to the criticism.
Finally, let’s note that you can watch the experiment in question from the YouTube livestream replay right below.