NASA has given the “go” for launch of Artemis I. The unmanned test flight has been sent to orbit the moon on November 16th, 2022. A combination of engines will be used to send the Orion Crew Capsule on the 38-day test flight. The mission has been a unified effort between many companies including Aerospace Fabrication & Materials. One of the main components that AFM has engineered is the Space Launch System’s (SLS) thermal control. The SLS is the super heavy lift launch vehicle that has been developed by NASA since 2011.
AFM has collaborated to develop passive thermal insulation blankets for a variety of components, including temperature-sensitive tanks on the SLS.
AFM’s experience with cryogenic tank super insulation and high temperature multilayer insulation was sought after to cover the innovative structures and components of the SLS. This includes Liquid Oxygen Tanks, Helium Tanks, and the components surrounding the rocket nozzles that generate ultra-high temperatures. AFM has provided many distinct parts of the SLS starting in 2017 and expects to aid in the subsequent scheduled flights that will be a steppingstone to landing humans on Mars.
We will be tuning into the upcoming Liftoff in anticipation of the launch. Although this is an unmanned test flight, it is the beginning of the program’s goal to explore deep space. This launch has been previously delayed; however, NASA is certain that the upcoming tests will ensure that the November 16th launch window. To watch the launch, tune into NASA’s YouTube channel: Artemis I Launch to the Moon (Official NASA Broadcast)