Aug 17, 2022 - Science

NASA's lunar rocket arrives at launch pad before first Artemis mission

NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with the Orion spacecraft aboard at the Kennedy Space Center on Aug. 16.
NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with the Orion spacecraft aboard at the Kennedy Space Center on Aug. 16. Photo: Joel Kowsky/NASA via Getty Images

NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) rocket arrived at a launch pad at Kennedy Space Station on Wednesday, roughly two weeks before it's set to make a debut test launch.

Why it matters: The flight will mark the first mission in NASA's Artemis program, through which the space agency hopes to send astronauts back to the moon.

  • The mission, set for Aug. 29, is expected to take three test dummies in a distant orbit around the moon for several days before returning to Earth for a splashdown in the Pacific Ocean.

The big picture: The SLS's journey with NASA's Orion spacecraft aboard it from its hangar to Launch Complex 39B took nearly 10 hours over Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.

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