NASA will conduct a second hot fire test for the central phase of the Space Launch System rocket from the fourth week of February. It will be part of the rocket’s Green Run series of tests to assess the main phase and ensure it is ready for the Artemis I mission, which will send an unmanned Orion spacecraft to the moon. The rocket first hot fire test in mid-January, where all four RS-25 engines fired simultaneously, was halted due to a problem with its hydraulic system. What was supposed to be an eight-minute burn only lasted 67 seconds – NASA wants the second pass to last longer than that so it can collect more data.
The agency also set a goal of eight minutes for the second test, as that is how long it would take to send the rocket into space. According to the NASA announcement, however, the Green Run team analyzed data from the first test firing and determined that four minutes would be sufficient to provide important data that can help verify whether the center stage is really ready for the flight. “Performing a second hot fire test will allow the team to repeat the operations of the first hot fire test and obtain data on how the center stage and motors are operating over a longer period that simulates more activities during rocket launch and ascent, ”NASA wrote. .