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Hydrogen leak detected during today’s SLS tank test

Though engineers have apparently overcome the issue so that today’s tank test of NASA’s SLS rocket can continue, a hydrogen leak was nonetheless detected during fueling.

The fueling tank test is not yet complete.

At this moment I cannot imagine the military’s range office will allow NASA to launch on September 27th, as the agency has requested. To do so will require the range to ignore the possibility that the flight termination is inoperable, as its batteries are past their use-by date by almost a month. Combined with these ongoing leak issues, it would be irresponsible to do otherwise.

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4 comments

  • Herman D Hurt

    The lousy work of NASA in general is embarrassing to me as an American that has followed this once great organization since the Project Mercury days. However, the governmental incompetence of the Federal government is like a disease and organizational ennui is there for all to see. Poor leadership, incompetent engineering and lack of real vision has rendered NASA a ghost of its former glory. Very sad.

  • David Eastman

    Supposedly the battery manufacturer has provided data showing that there is an enormous margin in that “use-by-date” and they are still plenty capable for the purpose. The NASA SLS team is apparently confident that the Air Force will approve a waiver. We’ll see.

    It’s a real eye opener how after all the hand-wringing over safety and verification and needing insight and hands-on reviews of everything Boeing and SpaceX do in the CRS program, when it’s THEIR program on the line, suddenly all the rules and checks are optional.

  • Jhon B

    I am not surprised by this mishap today. They should roll this thing back in and replace the batteries while they work on the valves because this thing is going nowhere soon. And why has a decision not been made. You know what the decision would be if it was a ‘SpaceX rocket.

  • pzatchok

    This has always been just a fueling test. If it fills to the top NASA will be happy.

    A launch was never expected. Thus they can skip the battery problem.

    I do not think they ever expected to actually launch the thing before October..

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