Vice President Kamala Harris, second gentleman coming to Florida for Artemis launch

Harris chairs National Space Council as part of vice presidential duties

Vice President Kamala Harris announces the cancelation of all federal student loans borrowed to attend any Corinthian Colleges, Thursday, June 2, 2022, at the Department of Education in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. – NASA will try to launch its moon rocket for the first time Monday morning, and Vice President Kamala Harris will be there for the launch.

Harris and second gentleman Doug Emhoff plan to be at Kennedy Space Center for the launch of the new Space Launch Systems rocket as part of the Artemis I mission.

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The two-hour launch window opens at 8:33 a.m. The rocket is expected to lift off from Launch Pad 39B.

Harris is expected to deliver remarks about the maiden launch. She and Emhoff will also tour the progress of the technology for the Artemis II and III missions.

With years of delays, News 6 has asked NASA’s senior vehicle operations manager many times about the possible rollout dates and launch windows.

Artemis I is NASA’s first attempt to return to the moon. The uncrewed mission will orbit the moon during a 42-day mission that will test the SLS and Orion spacecraft’s resiliency in space, including the resiliency of the new heat shield.

There are two backup launch dates:

  • Sept. 2: Two-hour launch window opens at 12:48 p.m., 39-day mission with an Oct. 11 splashdown
  • Sept. 5: One and a half-hour launch window opens at 5:12 p.m., 42-day mission with an Oct. 17 splashdown

If the mission is successful, NASA will proceed to a crewed mission for Artemis II in 2024, where the spacecraft will again orbit the Moon. If that is successful, Artemis III will see the astronauts land on the Moon, potentially in 2025.

Harris chairs the National Space Council as part of her vice presidential duties.

The Space Shuttle — the most complex, but not the most powerful, human-rated spacecraft ever built — rumbled and roared off the launch pad and shook the parking lot at the Kennedy Space Center so hard that car alarms went off. The sound of the shuttle traveled as much as 35, even 40 miles inland, if the wind was right.

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Christie joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021.