The historic Artemis I mission took flight November 16 after months of anticipation. The journey will send an uncrewed spacecraft around the moon, paving the way for NASA to return astronauts to the lunar surface.
The 322-foot-tall Space Launch System (SLS) emitted up to 9 million pounds of thrust to haul itself off the launchpad in Florida and into the air. Two Northrop Grumman five-segment solid rocket boosters helped successfully launch the SLS rocket from Pad 39B. This is the first in a series of Artemis missions focused on deep space exploration. Booster segments for Artemis II, the first crewed mission, and Artemis III, the mission that will land the first woman on the lunar surface, are complete. Artemis IV segments are currently being cast with propellant. Northrop Grumman will provide ongoing support for SLS and the Artemis missions through 2031.
Aerojet Rocketdyne, meanwhile, provided 39 propulsive elements for the Artemis I mission (38 liquid engines and one solid rocket motor), as well as 14 high-pressure tanks.