NASA Space Launch System’s Mobile Launcher takes a stroll

Space Coast, FL – Yesterday, the Crawler Transporter 2 & Mobile Launcher rolled out to LC-39B. The roll out started just after midnight and arrived at the top of the pad later in the morning.

Crawler Transporter 2 (CT-2) makes it’s way to LC-39B for further rehearsals | photo: Jon Van Horne

This roll out to the pad is to help prep the launch team for the actual wet dress rehearsal and launch of SLS and Orion on Artemis I. A wet dress rehearsal is when SLS and Orion will be rolled out to LC-39B on top of the mobile launcher to practice fueling operations. This is to happen a couple months before launch.

LC-39B and the Mobile Launch Tower | photo: Jon Van Horne

The mobile launcher will be on the pad for two-weeks. While at Launch Complex 39B engineers will conduct a series of tasks. They will include a timing test which will validate the launch team’s countdown timeline. They will also conduct a top-to-bottom wash down of the mobile launcher. This is to remove any debris remaining from construction and installation of the umbilical arms.

CT-2 rests upon LC-39B | photo: Jon Van Horne

While at the pad, the mobile launcher’s fire suppression system also will be recertified. The last certification was in December 2019 and is due before launch in November 2021.

If all goes well in the testing and rehearsals, the next time the Mobile Launcher rolls out there will be a rocket on it.

Like our content/updates? Give us a follow on our social media channels and check out our new Patreon Page with rewards.

Jon Van Horne
Jon Van Horne

He began his career in media as a multimedia designer and developer in Montreal, Quebec. He developed a passion for media during his job in Photography and Video at a Montreal media content company. Other passions in media, photography/videography and soon going back to school in engineering.