UPDATE: NASA fired SLS’ four RS-25 main engines just before 5:30 p.m. ET Saturday, but the test ran for less than two minutes due to an unknown issue that caused an automatic shutdown. Stay tuned for more at floridatoday.com/space.
Watch live above as NASA targets 4 p.m. ET Saturday, the opening of a two-hour window, for a long-duration test fire of the agency’s new Space Launch System rocket.
A massive stand at Stennis Space Center in Mississippi will host the final operation in the “Green Run,” a series of Artemis program tests designed to determine the core stage’s reliability. If all goes well, NASA will transport the 212-foot booster to Kennedy Space Center sometime in the first quarter of this year.
From there, it’s slated to fly on the program’s first mission before the end of 2021: Artemis I. That flight will take an uncrewed Orion capsule on a trip around the moon before splashing down and setting the stage for crewed lunar landings no earlier than 2024.
Note: NASA was scheduled to start live coverage at 4:20 p.m. ET Saturday, but teams worked to get ahead of schedule, so the agency moved up live coverage to 3:20 p.m. ET.