Completed repairs for NASA SLS and Artemis I, the CAPSTONE probe is in ” safe mode ”

At the launch pad of the Artemis I mission the engineers and technicians have completed the replacement of the seals which may have been the cause of the leak of liquid hydrogen which blocked the launch attempt of NASA SLS on September 3. As we know this caused the launch to be postponed to not before 23 September with another possible launch date on September 27th.

A few operations are still missing and a test will need to be performed to ensure that the repair was actually successful. Otherwise the launch of the big space rocket it could be postponed until the end of October. It will therefore be necessary to wait a few more days (the test will not take place before 17 September) before having a possible confirmation of the new launch dates for the Artemis I mission direct in lunar orbit (unmanned). Furthermore, again with regard to the Artemis missions, it was announced that the CAPSTONE probe is currently in “safe mode”.

NASA: Completed repairs to the pad, the CAPSTONE probe has a problem

In accordance to officially reported in the blog of Artemis missionthe ground crew technicians removed and replaced the plates of the called propellant transfer system quick disconnect. These plates are present on both the rocket and the ground system of the Mobile Launch Platform. The seals of the central stage were then replaced NASA SLS which could be the main cause of the loss of liquid hydrogen during the launch attempt on September 3.

nasa sls

In particular, there is one gasket for the 20 cm line which serves to fill and drain liquid hydrogen from the central stage. Then there is the 10 cm line gasket which is used for bleeding the system. Both were replaced while other seals were also checked for safety. During these hours, reconnections and inspections are underway to ensure that all work has been done correctly.

As written above, from 17 September there may be a refill operation for liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen to ensure that the repairs carried out by the technicians of the NASA withstand the extreme temperatures of liquid hydrogen. A system purge test will then be performed and finally a pre-pressurization test. After the tests the data will be examined and the launch operations could be started (not before 23 September).

NASA CAPSTONE is in “ safe mode ”

Always for the Artemis missions it must be remembered that a few months ago the CAPSTONE mission useful for verifying a new lunar orbit that will be used by the Lunar Gateway when it is operational. In the past, communication with the probe had been interrupted and then resumed after a short timebut now there seems to be a new problem.

nasa capstone

According to what is reported by the NASA on the official blog a trajectory correction as planned began on 8 September, but since then a problem has been detected through telemetry that led to the insertion of the “safe mode” for the probe during the final phase of the maneuver.

However, the team has not lost contact with the spacecraft and is working on solving the problem using the Deep Space Network (DSN) antennas. Already yesterday had been noticed how the spacecraft seems to be able to receive signals but not to relay new information back to Earth.

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Completed repairs for NASA SLS and Artemis I, the CAPSTONE probe is in ” safe mode ”

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