NASA has shared an amazing shot (below) showing the four engines that will power the first manned mission to the Moon in five decades.
There were four RS-25 engines. recently attached The main booster of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket, which will carry four astronauts to the Moon in the Artemis II mission, currently scheduled for November next year.
The engines were attached to the core stage at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, Louisiana.
In total, the engines are capable of generating approximately 2.2 million pounds of thrust at launch. Working with the vehicle’s two side boosters, the SLS generated an impressive 8.8 million pounds of thrust when the rocket made its first flight in November last year, and an uncrewed Orion on a flyby of the moon in the Artemis I mission Sent the capsule.
The first four Artemis missions are actually using refurbished engines that powered the Space Shuttle until the program was shut down in 2011.
The Artemis II mission will send NASA astronauts Christina Koch, Victor Glover and Reed Wiseman along with Canadian Space Agency astronaut Jeremy Hansen on a similar journey to the Artemis I mission. There will be no landing on the Moon, but rather a flyby that will take the crew to within just 80 miles of the Moon’s surface.
Seeing the core stage come together will certainly give the four astronauts a boost as their mission date approaches. In August, the crew were able to get a close-up look for the first time at the actual Orion capsule that will take them on their epic journey next year.
The Artemis II mission will confirm the safe operation of Orion’s crew support systems and potentially pave the way for the highly anticipated crew landing in 2025. The astronauts for that mission have not been named yet.
Additionally, NASA plans to build a permanent base on the Moon for long-term stays, similar to how astronauts today spend extended periods aboard the International Space Station near Earth.