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Why did NASA hide many details of the lunar super rocket test?

Why did NASA hide many details of the lunar super rocket test?  - Photo 1.

NASA’s giant super rocket SLS – Photo: NASA

On April 6, SLS completed a refueling exercise with frozen refueling containers and simulated a countdown in preparation for takeoff.

Although the test was live streamed on the website, many key details about the event were kept secret due to national security concerns, according to the news site. Live Science.

In order for the giant super rocket SLS to propel the 98-meter-tall Orion spacecraft into space, NASA needs to test all of the components of the SLS.

During refueling drills, NASA loaded supercooled liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen into the rocket’s tanks. When these two substances combine, it will create a strong thrust to send the vehicle into space.

“The test runs for about two days and simulates our launch countdown,” said Blackwell-Thompson, NASA’s Artemis program launch director.

Engineers monitor the temperature and pressure in the tanks and take data throughout the maneuver.

While NASA has shared certain milestones about the refueling exercise on social media, the agency has been barred from disclosing any details, fearing violations of the International Arms Trade Regulations. Economic Affairs (ITAR) of the United States. This information is provided by Mr. Tom Whitmeyer, NASA’s deputy administrator for the development of exploration systems, revealed.

ITAR is a regulatory mechanism that restricts the sharing of information about weapons and technology in ways that could harm US national security or foreign policy, according to the US State Department.

“We’re really super sensitive to cryogenic launch vehicles of this size and capability. They’re very similar to ballistic missile capabilities that other countries are very interested in,” he said. Whitmeyer told reporters.

“In particular, hostile nations abroad may want to get as much information as possible about things like the timing, the sequence, the flow rate, the temperature of the launch system,” Whitmeyer added. .

NASA’s upcoming Moon mission is called Artemis 1.

The Orion spacecraft mounted on top of the Space Launch System (SLS), also known by NASA as the “Mega Moon super rocket”.

SLS is the most powerful rocket ever built by NASA. The SLS launch date for the Artemis 1 mission is expected to be no earlier than May 2022.

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