WASHINGTON — Just days after NASA said it was ready to perform a second static-fire test of the Space Launch System core stage, the agency announced Feb. 22 that the test would be delayed because of a valve problem.
NASA said it was postponing the Green Run static-fire test, which had been scheduled for Feb. 25, after discovering a problem with one of eight valves called “prevalves” associated with the stage’s four RS-25 main engines. The valve, which supplies liquid oxygen, was “not working properly,” NASA said in a statement, but didn’t elaborate on the problem.
Engineers identified the problem during preparations over the weekend for the test. NASA said it will work with Boeing, the prime contractor for the core stage, to “identify a path forward in the days ahead and reschedule the hot fire test” but did not set a new date for the test.
This is not the first time a problem with valves delayed Green Run testing of the core stage. In November, NASA reported a problem with a liquid hydrogen prevalve on the core stage, which required workers to design a special tool to repair the valve on the test stand. That, along with the ...