Footage Shows Lightning Striking NASA's New Moon Rocket
| Last updated
Featured Image Credit: NASA/@JerryPikePhoto/Twitter
Footage shared to Twitter shows the moment lightning hit the Moon-bound Space Launch System rocket.
NASA confirmed the hit yesterday, 2 April in a statement about the rocket set to be at the centre of the Artemis 1 mission, which aims to establish a long-term human presence on the moon.
While the Space Agency didn't release footage of the lightning strike, a drone user did publish a clip to Twitter yesterday.
(1/2) The launch team is continuing to monitor severe weather in the area surrounding LC 39B. This afternoon, one of the three, nearly 600 ft lightning towers was struck. The lightning protection system works together to protect the rocket from lightning strikes.— NASA's Exploration Ground Systems (@NASAGroundSys) April 2, 2022
The hit was also confirmed by NASA who released a statement following the incident.
"Engineers confirmed there were four lightning strikes to the lightning towers within the perimeter of Launch Pad 39B.
"Teams have determined the first three were low intensity strikes to tower two and are continuing to review data from the fourth strike, which was higher in intensity to tower one," the statement continued.
However, NASA noted that the team sees 'no constraints proceeding with the test countdown timeline' and that they will continue procedures overnight.
A slowed-down version of the lightning strike hitting the structure was also shared to Twitter.
"Overnight, engineers will also work to make up time for activities that were paused due to the severe weather. The Mission Management Team will review the schedule and data from the power ups and sensors at the pad at a 6 a.m," the statement added.
It is unclear whether the incident will alter NASA's decision to conduct the testing of its Space Launch System without press present.
One publisher, Steven Young, said that the lack of press in attendance for the 'wet dress rehearsal', the final pre-launch before the launch of a rocket, didn't bode well for the Artemis 1 mission.
NASA announced it will conduct the SLS wet dress rehearsal behind closed doors. No independent media coverage. Never in the history of U.S. human spaceflight has the press corps or the public been left this much in the dark about a new NASA vehicle: https://t.co/hh6XKTl0VD— Steven Young (@stevenyoungsfn) March 28, 2022
"NASA announced it will conduct the SLS wet dress rehearsal behind closed doors. No independent media coverage. Never in the history of US human spaceflight has the press corps or the public been left this much in the dark about a new NASA vehicle", Young said in a tweet.
Typically press are looped into countdowns for major missions, however, this isn't the case with the Artemis 1 pre-launch, as per Futurism.
However, according to Tom Whitmeyer, the deputy associate administrator for NASA, the agency will be 'avoiding any specific timing, flow other types of things that would inadvertently give an indication towards specific characteristics of the operations that we're going through.'
If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]