NASA’s unmanned Orion spacecraft mission, which intended to take astronauts to Mars one day, couldn’t take off today (December 4) as a series of mishaps forced the mission controllers at the US space agency to scrub the planned launch.
Orion spacecraft is the latest space capsule that is created to eventually take the astronauts into deeper space than ever before.
According to the astronauts, obstacles like sticking fuel valves, wind gusts and a rogue boat entered the launch site that eventually forced the rocket carrying Orion to remain outside the launch window.
The unmanned spacecraft was due to take off at 12.05, UK time, today (December 4) from Cape Canaveral in Florida.
The team behind the mission said they will make another attempt to launch Orion into orbit tomorrow morning.
“Despite the valiant attempts of the launch team and mission managers around the country, we basically ran out of time in trying to troubleshoot,” said NASA’s Mike Curie.
The American space agency is hoping to make best use of Orion in carrying the astronauts back on the moon by the year 2020 and then take them to the Red Planet ‘Mars’ by the 2030s. NASA says a midway asteroid mission is also on the cards.
This is for the first time when NASA is sending a space capsule thousands of miles above the Earth. The scientists also wished to retrieve the space capsule again when it splashes down in the Pacific Ocean.
Orion will be making two orbits of our planet. The spacecraft will be flying about 3,600 miles (5,800 kilometers) above Earth, i.e. close to 15 times higher than International Space Station’s (ISS) orbit.