NASA’s future Moon rocket completes critical hot-fire test
NASA test-fired the core stage of its massive Space Launch System rocket in Mississippi on Thursday. The team appeared to clinch its second attempt at a hot-fire run after cutting short an initial firing in January. Pending a review of the test’s data, engineers are aiming to ship the rocket stage to Florida ahead of its debut test flight to the Moon under NASA’s Artemis program.
Mounted in a behemoth test facility at NASA’s Stennis Space Center, the 212-foot-tall rocket stage’s four RS-25 engines ignited together for over eight minutes to test the conditions of a real liftoff. NASA and its prime contractor, Boeing, needed to reach at least four minutes of continuous test time to call it a success. With eight minutes, “they should have…