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Colorado-based space expert says scrubbed Artemis launch is actually a common occurrence

NASA Artemis Rocket Test
Posted at 12:15 PM, Sep 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-04 14:30:50-04

DENVER — The second attempt to launch NASA’s Artemis 1 has been scrubbed again after a fuel leak was discovered. NASA says the team will be standing down for the current launch period, which ends Tuesday.

While many space enthusiasts were disappointed by this news, it's actually a common occurrence with these types of missions.

Jack Burns, a professor of astrophysics at the University of Colorado Boulder, says several failed launch attempts are not unusual. The same thing happened with the first few missions of Apollo, and he is confident the Artemis 1 mission will happen.

Colorado-based space expert says scrubbed Artemis launch is actually a common occurrence

“The spacecraft, these rockets are very complicated. And it’s not at all surprising it didn’t go the first time Monday or didn’t go the second time,” said Burns.

Burns says it may take several more times before the rocket heads into space. NASA stopped the Artemis 1 launch from happening Saturday after teams say they encountered a liquid hydrogen leak while loading the propellant into the rocket’s core stage, which NASA says it will assess over the next few days.

Colorado-based Lockheed Martin Space is the prime contractor for the Orion capsule, which is attached to the rocket, and will be flown without astronauts on this mission as the first step in returning people to the moon.

Lockheed Martin tweeted that it appreciates the work NASA is doing and will continue to keep the Orion spacecraft ready for the next launch opportunity.

“They designed it. They built it and they’re building capsules. They’ve already completed building the Artemis 2 capsule and Artemis 3,” said Burns.

Artemis 2 will go around the moon with a crew and return while Artemis 3 will land on the moon’s surface, also with a crew. Burns says with the ultimate goal of continuing to grow the space program for years to come.

“It’s about creating a sustainable presence in space in which we are going to live and work first on the moon than on mars and beyond,” said Burns.

NASA says it has decided to forego additional launch attempts in early September, so it could be several more weeks or October before all eyes are on the Kennedy Space Center again.