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Artemis I returning to the launch pad for the wet dress rehearsal

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (WHNT) — Repairs are nearing completion on the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket that will be used for NASA’s first Artemis mission and a new test date has been set.

The Artemis I rocket was moved from Launch Pad 39B to the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) on April 25 after it failed three wet-suit rehearsal tests designed to subject the rocket to a simulated launch, without actually launch the rocket.

The problems discovered during these attempts have since been corrected and the SLS is ready to return to the launch pad. The new wetsuit rehearsal test is scheduled to begin with rolling the VAB rocket to the launch pad from midnight on June 6.

An upper stage helium check valve was tested and replaced and a small piece of rubber debris was found to be the cause of the problem. Crews also repaired a small leak in the tail service mast umbilical ground plate housing on the mobile launcher. The software involved in powering the central stage has also been updated.

Upgrades were also completed to the facility that supplies nitrogen gas for all launch operations at Kennedy Space Flight Center.

While the SLS was in the VAB, the crews also continued work that was originally scheduled to be completed after the wetsuit rehearsal. Some of the upcoming work included opening the Orion Crew Module hatch to install some of the Artemis I mission payloads and replacing some ground systems panels with flight panels.

After the rocket completes the 4.2-mile journey to the launch pad, it will take about two weeks to prepare the rocket and ground launch systems for dress rehearsal. The test is due to start on June 19.


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