Nach dem Untertitel von Tolkiens "The Hobbit" gibt es in in der abenteuernden Literatur die Handlung "There and Back Again," zu dt. "Rin in die Kartoffeln, raus aus die Kartoffeln".
Zitat NASA’s Artemis I Moon Rocket to Depart Launch Pad 39B Today
April 25, 2022, 10.16 a.m.
At approximately 5:30 p.m. ET today, NASA’s Artemis I Moon rocket atop the crawler-transporter is scheduled to leave launch pad 39B and begin its 4-mile trek to the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Once inside the VAB, teams will work on replacing a faulty upper stage check valve and a small leak within the tail service mast umbilical ground plate housing on the mobile launcher while the supplier for the gaseous nitrogen makes upgrades to their pipeline configuration to support Artemis I testing and launch. Following completion, teams will return to the launch pad to complete the next wet dress rehearsal attempt.
The NASA Kennedy Twitter account will release an update once the roll has begun. Watch a live stream of the rocket departing the pad and arriving at VAB on the Kennedy Newsroom YouTube channel and check back here for updates.
Landung der Axiom-1-Mission zur ISS gestern, 25.4, 17:06 UTC, nach 17 Tagen (verlängert wg. schlechten Wetters). Start der SpaceX Crew 4 zur ISS morgen, 27.4. 7:52 UTC, Startrampe 39A, Kennedy Space Center (wenn das Wetter mitspielt, momentan stehen die Chancen zu 90% gut).
"Les hommes seront toujours fous; et ceux qui croient les guérir sont les plus fous de la bande." - Voltaire
Zitat von Ulrich Elkmann im Beitrag #11Weder NASA noch SpaceX, hat aber auch mit dem Griff nach den Sternen zu tun. Rocket Lab haben gestern angekündigt, daß sie beim nächsten Start der Electron versuchen wollen, die Startstufe nicht sanft auf dem Erdboden zu landen, sondern in der Luft abzufangen.
Der Versuch steht gerade in Neuseeland an. Countdown bei minus 10 Minuten.
PS. Nächsten Monat steht von Neuseeland übrigens ein weiteren Baustein für den "Rückkehr zum Mond" an: der Start des Capstone-Satelliten.
Zitat Capstone (kurz für Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment) ist ein geplanter Kleinsatellit und Mondorbiter der NASA. Der Satellit soll im Mai 2022 auf den Weg zum Mond gebracht werden. Er hat die Aufgabe, ein Navigationsverfahren im cislunaren Raum – dem Bereich zwischen Mond und Erde – zu erproben. Außerdem soll er eine neuartige Umlaufbahn um den Mond testen, bevor dort die Raumstation Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway (LOP-G) stationiert wird.
00:50 Liftoff. 1 Min. 10 km Höhe, Überschallgewindigkeit. 2:25 Min. Stufentrennung in 75 km Höhe. 00:56 Videofeed von der rückkehrenden Erststufe. 8 Min: Bremsfallschirm entfaltet. 9:00 Hauptfallschirm entfaltet. 10:00 Brennschluß 2. Stufe. 13:00 Fangschlinge im Videofeed vom Helikopter freigegeben. 15:25 Da ist sie! Am Fallschirm. 15:55 Und hat sie. Die Satelliten und die Kickstart-Stufe befinden sich mittlerweile ein ganzes Stück über den Antarktis.
"The “There And Back Again” mission will see Electron deploy 34 satellites to a sun synchronous orbit for a variety of customers including Alba Orbital, Astrix Astronautics, Aurora Propulsion Technologies, E-Space, Spaceflight Inc., and Unseenlabs, and bringing the total number of satellites launched by Electron to 146."
Zitat Spaceflight Now@SpaceflightNow Rocket Lab confirms the recovery helicopter caught the Electron booster over the Pacific Ocean, about 15 minutes after launching from from New Zealand — a major step in the company’s rocket reuse efforts 1:09 AM · May 3, 2022·TweetDeck
Zitat Jonathan McDowell @planet4589 "After the catch the pilot noticed different loads than expected .. and offloaded [i.e. dropped] the stage". Stage splashed down in ocean and will be recovered 1:49 AM · May 3, 2022·TweetDeck
Zitat 05/03/2022 01:59 Stephen Clark Rocket Lab says the recovery helicopter “offloaded” the Electron first stage for splashdown after catching the booster over the Pacific Ocean. The pilot noticed different load characteristics than experienced during previous testing, Rocket Lab said.
05/03/2022 01:59 Stephen Clark Rocket Lab says the Electron booster stage is in “great condition” after splashdown downrange from the launch site in New Zealand.
SLS-Artemis I: LH2 leak that scuttled SLS fueling test last month has been repaired. @NASA preparing for a second attempt at the launch countdown simulation in early June, according to @Astro_CabanaBob, @AviationWeek colleague Mark Carreau reports.
Zitat Stephen Clark @StephenClark1 NASA’s Jim Free confirms the agency will provide live commentary for the next SLS wet dress rehearsal — not clear if he means the periodic updates on Twitter or a NASA TV broadcast. 9:57 PM · May 5, 2022·TweetDeck
NASA just provided the Artemis I launch windows for the rest of the year (thanks Kathryn!): July 26-Aug 9 Aug 23-Sept 6 Sept 19-Oct 4 Oct 17-31 Nov 12-27 Dec 9-22 With the caveat that they only do detailed analysis about 2 months out, so these are preliminary.
Zitat Eric Dahlstrom@EricDahlstrom1 Replying to @SpcPlcyOnline
Interesting. The first 4 are for similar lunar phases. "Artemis I launch windows:" July 26-Aug 9 (before new Moon - after first quarter) Aug 23-Sept 6 Sept 19-Oct 4 Oct 17-31 Nov 12-27 (before third quarter - before first quarter) Dec 9-22 (after full Moon - before new Moon)
NASA's Jim Free says the current schedule for the wet-dress test is early- to mid-June. This target may need to be adjusted as work on the vehicle progresses. They are currently looking at a launch attempt in August, but will set a launch date after the wet dress is completed.
Zitat May 12, 2022 - Scientists Grow Plants in Lunar Soil
In the early days of the space age, the Apollo astronauts took part in a visionary plan: Bring samples of the lunar surface material, known as regolith, back to Earth where they could be studied with state-of-the-art equipment and saved for future research not yet imagined. Fifty years later, at the dawn of the Artemis era and the next astronaut return to the Moon, three of those samples have been used to successfully grow plants. For the first time ever, researchers have grown the hardy and well-studied Arabidopsis thaliana in the nutrient-poor lunar regolith. ... Scientists at the University of Florida have made a breakthrough discovery — decades in the making — that could both enable space exploration and benefit humanity. “Here we are, 50 years later, completing experiments that were started back in the Apollo labs,” said Robert Ferl, a professor in the Horticultural Sciences department at the University of Florida, Gainesville, and a communicating author on a paper published on May 12, 2022, in Communications Biology. “We first asked the question of whether plants can grow in regolith. And second, how might that one day help humans have an extended stay on the Moon.”
The answer to the first question is a resounding yes. Plants can grow in lunar regolith. They were not as robust as plants grown in Earth soil, or even as those in the control group grown in a lunar simulant made from volcanic ash, but they did indeed grow. And by studying how the plants responded in the lunar samples, the team hopes to go on to answer the second question as well, paving the way for future astronauts to someday grow more nutrient-rich plants on the Moon and thrive in deep space. ... To grow the Arabidopsis, the team used samples collected on the Apollo 11, 12, and 17 missions, with only a gram of regolith allotted for each plant. The team added water and then seeds to the samples. They then put the trays into terrarium boxes in a clean room. A nutrient solution was added daily.
“After two days, they started to sprout!” said Anna-Lisa Paul, who is also a professor in Horticultural Sciences at the University of Florida, and who is first author on the paper. “Everything sprouted. I can’t tell you how astonished we were! Every plant – whether in a lunar sample or in a control – looked the same up until about day six.”
After day six, however, it was clear that the plants were not as robust as the control group plants growing in volcanic ash, and the plants were growing differently depending on which type of sample they were in. The plants grew more slowly and had stunted roots; additionally, some had stunted leaves and sported reddish pigmentation.
After 20 days, just before the plants started to flower, the team harvested the plants, ground them up, and studied the RNA. In a biological system, genes are decoded in multiple steps. First, the genes, or DNA, are transcribed into RNA. Then the RNA is translated into a protein sequence. These proteins are responsible for carrying out many of the biological processes in a living organism. Sequencing the RNA revealed the patterns of genes that were expressed, which showed that the plants were indeed under stress and had reacted the way researchers have seen Arabidopsis respond to growth in other harsh environments, such as when soil has too much salt or heavy metals.
Teams at @NASAKennedy continue to work on the main tasks needed to prepare the Space Launch System rocket and @NASA_Orion spacecraft to return to launch pad 39B for the next wet dress rehearsal attempt.
Zitat Teams at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida continue to work on the main tasks needed to prepare the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft to return to launch pad 39B for the next wet dress rehearsal attempt.
After re-tightening the flange bolts on the tail service mast umbilical lines to address a hydrogen leak identified during the previous wet dress rehearsal, engineers determined the seals on the bolts are no longer relaxing, and the system should remain tightly sealed during propellant loading. As a precaution, teams also moved the location of a heavy cantilevered filter on the tail service mast umbilical, which filters out any contaminants in the gaseous helium – a purge gas – that travels through the drain assist purge line. Engineers did not identify any leaks at its previous location, but relocating the filter will ensure it does not contribute to future leaks. Engineers conducted additional leak checks and have not detected any leaks at ambient air temperature.
Additionally, after replacing the helium check valve on the interim cryogenic propulsion stage (ICPS), engineers found a damaged rubber O-ring seal in the flight side of the quick disconnect – the area that separates the ICPS from the mobile launcher during launch. The O-ring came loose and entered the valve, preventing the valve from sealing correctly. Teams removed the flight and ground side of the quick disconnect system and replaced support hardware that was downstream of the check valve. Work is underway to determine the root cause to prevent any recurrences. Next, teams will re-pressurize the system and test the replaced hardware on the upper stage.
There are four primary parameters that dictate launch availability within these periods. These key constraints are unique to the Artemis I mission and future launch availability beyond this flight will be determined based on capabilities and trajectories unique to each mission.
- The launch day must account for the Moon's position in its lunar cycle so that the SLS rocket’s upper stage can time the trans-lunar injection burn with enough performance to successfully intercept the "on ramp" for the lunar distant retrograde orbit. The more powerful Exploration Upper Stage on future configurations of the rocket will enable daily, or near-daily, launch opportunities to the Moon, depending on the orbit desired.
- The resulting trajectory for a given day must ensure Orion is not in darkness for more than 90 minutes at a time so that the solar array wings can receive and convert sunlight to electricity and the spacecraft can maintain an optimal temperature range. Mission planners eliminate potential launch dates that would send Orion into extended eclipses during the flight. This constraint requires knowledge of the Earth, Moon, and Sun along the planned mission trajectory path before the mission ever occurs, as well as an understanding of the Orion spacecraft’s battery state of charge before entering an eclipse.
- The launch date must support a trajectory that allows for the skip entry technique planned during Orion’s return to Earth. A skip entry is a maneuver in which the spacecraft dips into the upper part of Earth’s atmosphere and use that atmosphere, along with the lift of the capsule, to simultaneously slow down and skip back out of the atmosphere, then reenter for final descent and splashdown. The technique allows engineers to pinpoint Orion’s splashdown location and on future missions will help lower the aerodynamic breaking loads astronauts inside the spacecraft will experience, and maintain the spacecraft’s structural loads within design limits.
- The launch date must support daylight conditions for Orion’s splashdown to initially assist recovery personnel when they locate, secure, and retrieve the spacecraft from the Pacific Ocean.
The periods below show launch availability through the end of 2022. Mission planners refine the periods based on updated analysis approximately two months before they begin and are subject to change.
July 26 – August 10 13 launch opportunities No launch availability on August 1, 2, and 6
August 23 – September 6 (preliminary) 12 launch opportunities No launch availability on August 30, 31, and Sept. 1
September 20 – October 4 (preliminary) 14 launch opportunities No launch availability on Sept. 29
October 17 – October 31 (preliminary) 11 launch opportunities No launch availability on October 24, 25, 26, and 28
November 12 – November 27 (preliminary) 12 launch opportunities No launch availability on November 20, 21, and 26
December 9 – December 23 (preliminary) 11 launch opportunities No launch availability on December 10, 14, 18, and 23
Launch Operations Constraints if Core Stage Tanked: - No more than 3 attempts in 7 days - Min 48 hrs between attempts 1 and 2 - Min 72 hrs between attempts 2 and 3
During a budget hearing, CJS subcommittee chair Matt Cartwright references a forthcoming Inspector General report on NASA's Mobile Launcher-2. I've heard the report is a devastating, finding that the second tower will cost about $1 billion; that Bechtel is wildly underperforming.
Der Mobile Launcher ist der Transport-Raupenschlepper, die für die Mondmission die beiden jetzt über 50 Jahre alten Crawler ersetzen soll, um das SLS vom Vehicle Assembly Building zur Startrampe zu tranportieren und dort als Startplattform dienen soll.
Zitat Bechtel will contribute decades of engineering and construction capability to the mission by constructing Mobile Launcher 2 (ML2). Selected in 2019, Bechtel will design, build, test, and commission ML2: a ground structure used to assemble and launch the Space Launch System (SLS) Rocket and Orion spacecraft from Launch Pad 39B at Kennedy Space Center.
The cost-plus-award-fee contract carries an estimated value of approximately $402 million with a term of 47 months. When complete, ML2 will be 380 feet tall and will include a launch platform for SLS and physical connections to NASA’s ground infrastructure, providing several functions before launch. The tower portion of ML2 will be equipped with several connection lines called umbilicals, as well as launch accessories that will provide SLS and Orion with power, communications, coolant, fuel, and stabilization prior to launch. The scope also includes all project management, architectural and engineering design, technical integration, fabrication, construction, testing, commissioning, and quality control for ML2.
Zitat Jeff Foust @jeff_foust NASa says they’re planning a June 6 rollout of SLS back to LC-39B for another wet dress rehearsal attempt.
Zitat NASA@NASA · 20m LIVE NOW: Leaders discuss the status of the “wet dress rehearsal” test for the @NASAArtemis I Moon mission, now that @NASAGroundSys teams have successfully addressed items from previous tests: https://youtu.be/jAumudhOFAI
6:07 PM · May 27, 2022·Tweetbot for Mac
Jeff Foust@jeff_foust·13m Replying to @jeff_foust WDR itself, in terms of propellant loading, is no earlier than June 19.
NASA’s Cliff Lanham says some of the get-ahead work they did on SLS/Orion while back in the VAB (work that would have been done after WDR) helps “lessen risk” on the schedule for launch, but no specific schedule savings.
Zitat NASA plans to haul its huge Space Launch System moon rocket back to the launch pad June 5-6 for a fourth attempt to load it with 730,000 gallons of supercold propellants in a dress-rehearsal countdown to clear the way for a maiden test flight later this summer, officials said Friday.
“Teams have been hard at work preparing the Space Launch System rocket and the Orion spacecraft to return back to pad 39B,” said Cliff Lanham, senior vehicle operations manager at the spaceport. “We’re planning for that to occur on June 6 in preparation for our next wet dress rehearsal.”
If all goes well, the three-day countdown will begin around June 17, leading to propellant loading and the terminal countdown no earlier than June 19.
“We have built in two weather days that could move that date around slightly,” Lanham said. “Again, it is Florida in June. So thunderstorms are expected.”
Zitat Two attempts were made to transition from hydrogen “slow fill” to “fast fill,” but in both cases sensors detected higher-than-allowable levels of gaseous hydrogen near the umbilical. The fueling test was called off at that point and on April 15, engineers began hauling the SLS back to the Vehicle Assembly Building for troubleshooting and repairs.
As it turned out, the upper stage helium valve failed to work because a bit of rubber debris had lodged in the mechanism. The valve was replaced and troubleshooters worked to eliminate any additional sources of foreign object debris.
“Teams have performed several leak checks,” Lanham said. “We noticed the flange bolts on the … umbilical had loosened over time. So we went in there and retightened the bolts and conducted several leak tests and observed the system to be sure they did not loosen a loosen back up. And all looks good there.”
SLS and @NASA_Orion are targeted to return to launch pad 39B at @NASAKennedy June 6 for the next wet dress rehearsal attempt ahead of the #Artemis I mission. First motion is slated for 12:01 a.m. the morning of the 6th.
Zitat NASA just picked these 2 companies to build next-gen spacesuits for the moon, space station
By Elizabeth Howell published about 14 hours ago
The contracts will support the International Space Station and the Artemis moon program through 2034.
NASA has selected two companies to make spacesuits for its Artemis moon program and future International Space Station (ISS) missions.
Teams led by Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace (with ILC Dover as a major contributor) received access to a contract worth up to a total of $3.5 billion to supply spacesuits for future NASA missions through 2034, agency officials announced today (June 1).
Like the private outfits that send cargo and astronauts to the International Space Station, Axiom and Collins don't have guaranteed orders yet under the contract. (The Collins-ILC Dover team has decades of experience supplying spacesuits to NASA, while Axiom is a new entrant.)
But they will have opportunities to vie for task orders for missions as soon as 2025, including a demonstration mission outside the ISS and the debut Artemis moon landing during the Artemis 3 mission, which is targeted for 2025 or 2026, NASA officials said during a press conference today.
Axiom Space is seeking to install a module on the ISS by 2024 as the core of a new, independent space station. The company has already run one private crewed mission to the ISS — Ax-1, which launched and landed in April — and has others in the works as well.
The spacesuit designs are still at an early stage, although the companies emphasized that their units will be somewhat modular, as lightweight and flexible as possible, and will integrate feedback from astronauts and the flight community in assessing the best path forward for completion.
For example, NASA officials said that the next generation of spacesuits will have a more flexible fit for a wider variety of body types, addressing a criticism of the spacesuits that agency astronauts use at the moment. NASA has conducted just one all-woman spacewalk to date, in 2019, largely due to the difficulty of swapping out the right-sized spacesuit parts in orbit.
The new suits will replace the agency's extravehicular mobility units (EMUs), two generations of which have been produced since 1983 to serve space shuttle and ISS missions. Both EMU versions were produced by a team led by ILC Dover and Collins Aerospace.
NASA said today that the EMUs are "aging." An example: Astronauts are unable to use EMUs on the space station for routine spacewalks at the moment, due to a spacesuit water leak in March that is still being investigated. (The cause will take time to determine, as the affected unit needs to be shipped to Earth for analysis; it's the most severe incident of its type since a resolved leaking issue in 2013.)
NASA has been working on its own sets of next-generation spacesuits for about 15 years across several programs. The latest designed to support the Artemis program, for example, was called the Exploration Extravehicular Mobility Unit (xEMU). But an August 2021 report from the NASA Office of Inspector General found that setbacks in xEMU development would likely delay the first Artemis landing at least a year from 2024, among other issues.
If you needed any more evidence that Artemis III is not happening in 2025, it came yesterday. During the EVA suit presser, both companies said they were hoping to demonstrate their suits in LEO in 2025. That must happen before any Moon landing.
Zitat NASA's Kennedy Space Center @NASAKennedy Attention all passengers: crawler-transporter 2 is now boarding.
The 6.65 million pound crawler is now moving inside of the Vehicle Assembly Buidling to pick up @NASA_SLS and @NASA_Orion. In a few days, it'll roll out to Launch Complex 39B to drop off the #Artemis I Moon rocket.
Stand bei 8 Stunden, 28 Minuten der Fahrt. Fahrbeginn war um 6:12 heute morgen.
Zitat NASA’s first Space Launch System moon rocket is rolling out to its launch pad early Monday at the Kennedy Space Center for another attempt later this month to fully load it with super-cold propellants, the culmination of a countdown rehearsal officials aim to complete before moving forward with launch later this summer.
The towering 322-foot-tall (98-meter) rocket began the journey at approximately 12:15 a.m. EDT (0415 GMT) Monday with first motion out of High Bay 3 inside the Vehicle Assembly Building, the iconic hangar at Kennedy originally built to stack and service Saturn 5 moon rockets during the Apollo program.
The SLS moon rocket and its mobile launch platform are riding to pad 39B on a diesel-powered crawler-transporter. The 4.2-mile (6.8-kilometer) journey will take about 8 to 12 hours to complete, with arrival on top of the ramp at pad 39B expected after sunrise Monday. The full stack weighs about 21.4 million pounds for rollout.
Zitat The Artemis 1 launcher rolled back to the hangar April 26, and technicians inside the high bay tightened seals on the umbilical connection in hopes of fixing the hydrogen leak. Workers also swapped out the balky helium valve on the upper stage, which failed due to rubber debris stuck in the mechanism. NASA said teams inside the VAB also worked to ensure no more debris would pose a problem for the new valve.
Meanwhile, upgrades at an off-site nitrogen gas plant near the Kennedy Space Center were completed to expand the system’s capacity for the SLS moon rocket. The nitrogen facility is operated by Air Liquide.
With the troubleshooting behind them, NASA teams decided to return to the Artemis 1 moon rocket to pad 39B for another countdown dress rehearsal, or WDR, later this month. If all goes according to plan, the next attempt to fully load the SLS moon rocket with propellant is scheduled for June 19.
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