Artemis I Launch Countdown Commences

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with the Orion spacecraft aboard is seen atop a mobile launcher at Launch Pad 39B, Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2022, after being rolled out to the launch pad at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA’s Artemis I mission is the first integrated test of the agency’s deep space exploration systems: the Orion spacecraft, SLS rocket, and supporting ground systems. Launch of the uncrewed flight test is targeted for no earlier than Aug. 29. Photo Credit: (NASA/Joel Kowsky)

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The mission management team for Artemis I met this morning to review the status of operations and have polled “go” to proceed with the launch countdown. The countdown commenced at 10:23 a.m. EDT, Aug. 27, after the launch team arrived at their stations in the Rocco A. Petrone Launch Control Center at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Throughout the day, teams will power up the Orion spacecraft and the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket’s core stage and prepare the four RS-25 engines.

Meteorologists with Space Launch Delta 45 predict a 70% chance of favorable weather for launch on Monday, Aug. 29. The weather guidelines for NASA’s Artemis I flight test identify conditions to launch the agency’s Space Launch System and Orion spacecraft.

Tune in to NASA Television, the NASA app, or the agency’s website at 11 a.m. for a prelaunch media briefing. Participants include:

  • Mike Sarafin, Artemis mission manager, NASA Headquarters
  • Charlie Blackwell-Thompson, Artemis launch director, Exploration Ground Systems Program, Kennedy
  • Judd Freiling, ascent and entry flight director, Johnson
  • Rick LaBrode, lead flight director, Johnson
  • Melissa Jones, recovery director, Exploration Ground Systems Program, Kennedy
  • Melody Lovin, weather officer, Space Launch Delta 45
  • Jacob Bleacher, chief exploration scientist, Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters

Stay tuned for a briefing at 2:30 p.m. on the agency’s Moon to Mars exploration plans with the following participants:

  • Bill Nelson, NASA administrator
  • Bhavya Lal, NASA associate administrator for technology, policy, and strategy
  • Jim Free, NASA associate administrator, Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate
  • Kathy Lueders, NASA associate administrator, Space Operations Mission Directorate
  • Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA associate administrator, Science Mission Directorate
  • Prasun Desai, NASA deputy associate administrator, Space Technology Mission Directorate
  • Randy Bresnik, NASA astronaut

Read more about NASA’s briefings and events coverage. NASA’s Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft are scheduled to lift off from Kennedy’s Launch Pad 39B during a two-hour launch window that opens at 8:33 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 29.


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