THIS WEEK @NASA: Next Element for Artemis I Moon Rocket Gets Stacked at Kennedy Space Center

latest happenings around NASA

ABOVE VIDEO: Spacewalking astronauts work outside the space station, NASA’s new deputy administrator is sworn-in, and putting another piece of our Artemis I Moon rocket in place … a few of the stories to tell you about – This Week at NASA!

Spacewalks Continue to Install New Station Solar Arrays

On June 25, astronauts Shane Kimbrough of NASA and Thomas Pesquet of the European Space Agency conducted the third spacewalk in 10 days outside the International Space Station.

The pair worked to install and deploy the second of six new ISS Roll-Out Solar Arrays (iROSA).

The arrays will help increase the station’s total available power and are the same solar array design that will power elements of the agency’s Gateway lunar-orbiting outpost.

Melroy Sworn in as NASA Deputy Administrator

“I, Pamela Ann Melroy.”

On June 21, former astronaut Pam Melroy took office as NASA’s new Deputy Administrator, after being given the oath of office by Administrator Bill Nelson in a ceremony at our Mary W. Jackson NASA Headquarters building in Washington.

“I’m very honored to be teamed with Administrator Nelson and our Associate Administrator Bob Cabana and the rest of the broader team. It’s our intention, I believe to not just lead today’s NASA, but also lead us forward into the future and support the generations of fantastic things that NASA will continue to do.”—Pam Melroy, NASA Deputy Administrator

“What a grand occasion for us and what an appropriate nominee, now confirmed. And so we’ve got someone that is extremely skilled, experienced and ready for this job.—Bill Nelson, NASA Administrator

Melroy was nominated in April by President Biden and confirmed by the Senate on June 17. She is one of only two women to command a space shuttle and logged more than 38 days in space as an astronaut.

Next Element for Artemis I Moon Rocket Gets Stacked

Workers at our Kennedy Space Center have stacked the launch vehicle stage adapter atop the Space Launch System or SLS rocket’s core stage, ahead of the uncrewed Artemis I Moon mission targeted for later this year. The cone shaped adapter connects the core stage and the interim cryogenic propulsion stage (ICPS), which provides the Orion spacecraft with the additional thrust needed to travel tens of thousands of miles beyond the Moon. Artemis I is the first integrated test of Orion and SLS ahead of missions to the Moon with astronauts.

Ocean-Observing Satellite Starts Providing Science Data

After several months of check-outs and calibrations following its launch last November, the ocean-observing Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite made its first science data available to the public on June 22. The satellite is a U.S.-European collaboration to measure sea surface height and other key ocean features, such as ocean surface wind speed and wave height, and is part of a series of satellites that has been gathering precise ocean height measurements for nearly 30 years.

Funds Awarded to Minority-Serving Institutions for Ocean Research

Cooperative agreements and funding have been awarded to 10 minority-serving institutions with projects that support NASA’s effort to better understand the role of oceans in the Earth system. The awards are through NASA’s Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP), part of the agency’s Office of STEM Engagement. It supports the training and development of students and faculty at minority-serving institutions in STEM fields.

That’s what’s up this week @NASA

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