Artemis I launch

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The Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with the Orion spacecraft aboard lifted off at 07:47 CET from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA on 16 September 2022.

The most powerful rocket ever built sent NASA’s Orion spacecraft and ESA’s European Service Module (ESM) to a journey beyond the Moon and back. No crew will be on board Orion this time, and the spacecraft will be controlled by teams on Earth.

ESM provides for all astronauts’ basic needs, such as water, oxygen, nitrogen, temperature control, power and propulsion.

Much like a train engine pulls passenger carriages and supplies power, the European Service Module will take the Orion capsule to its destination and back.

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