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Watch NASA's Artemis 1 moon mission launch and prep tests live online for free

Update for Sept. 19: NASA is now targeting no earlier than Sept. 27 for the launch of its Artemis 1 mission to the moon. On Sept. 21, NASA will conduct a fueling test of the mission's Space Launch System rocket. A briefing at 11:30 a.m. EDT (1530 GMT) today will highlight that fueling test.


NASA's huge Artemis 1 rocket is counting down to a second launch attempt to return the moon and when it does, you can watch the historic mission live online for free. 

The Artemis 1 mission is scheduled to launch no earlier than Tuesday, Sept. 12, at 11:37 a.m. EDT (1537 GMT) from Pad 39B of NASA's Kennedy Space Center

NASA will host a series of webcasts leading up to the uncrewed Artemis 1 launch, which will mark the first test flight of the Space Launch System megarocket with its Orion spacecraft. The launch day webcast will include special guests like actors Chris Evans, Jack Black and Keke Palmer. You can already see live views of the Artemis 1 moon rocket atop its pad in the online live feed.

The Space Launch System megarocket sits on Launch Pad 39B at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. (Image credit: NASA)

The last time a rocket this powerful thundered off a KSC pad was back in 1973 when a Saturn V moon rocket carried Skylab into orbit, marking the end of the Apollo era, so this month's event should be quite a show.

Related: NASA's Artemis 1 moon mission: Live updates 

SLS model rocket kit

Estes NASA SLS Model Rocket

(Image credit: Amazon)

You can launch a Space Launch System of your own with this Estes NASA SLS model rocket (opens in new tab) for a 1:200 scale version of NASA's moon megarocket. Read more about it.

According to NASA (opens in new tab), the space agency will deliver comprehensive coverage of prelaunch, launch, and postlaunch activities for Artemis I when it comes time to light the candle. This momentous uncrewed dress rehearsal around the moon will clear the trail for a crewed moon-bound flight test with 2024's Artemis 2, and an actual lunar landing by 2025 as part of Artemis 3.

Those lucky enough to be joining the Artemis 1 spectacle in Florida will be treated to the shock and awe of 8.8 million pounds of thrust fighting gravity and propelling the sleek SLS rocket and Orion space capsule into the heavens. For the rest of us, NASA just released its schedule for the free livestream broadcast to watch the mission  from the safety and comfort of our own homes. 

Live event coverage will air on Space.com courtesy of NASA Television, the NASA mobile app (opens in new tab), and the agency's official website (opens in new tab), with prelaunch activities to be streamed as well.

Sure, it might not provide the same epic experience that the Earth-shuddering blastoff will offer, but it's the next best thing and you don't have to worry about the heat, parking hassles, or huge crowds.  

The stages of the Artemis 1 mission to the moon. (Image credit: NASA)

On launch day, a live broadcast of the festivities includes celebrity appearances by Jack Black, Chris Evans, and Keke Palmer, as well as a patriotic performance of "The Star-Spangled Banner" courtesy of Josh Groban and Herbie Hancock. Then we'll hear "America the Beautiful" played by The Philadelphia Orchestra and cellist Yo-Yo Ma, conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

Here's a rundown of the upcoming launch activities leading up to liftoff.

Monday, Sept. 19: 11:30 am ET - Artemis 1 tanking test preview

On Monday, Sept. 19, NASA will hold a press teleconference to discuss a critical fueling test of the Artemis 1 Space Launch System megarocket. The briefing will begin at 11:30 a.m. EDT (1530 GMT), with NASA providing a live audio of the press conference online. 

The teleconference will review NASA's plan to conduct what it calls a "tanking" test of the Artemis 1 moon rocket. That test, scheduled for Sept. 21, will fuel the massive rocket with its 736,000 gallons of super-chilled liquid propellant. It will test repairs to two liquid hydrogen fuel lines designed to plug leaks that dogged the first two launch attempts. 

Here is who will speak during the briefing:

  • Tom Whitmeyer, deputy associate administrator for Common Exploration Systems Development, NASA Headquarters
  • Mike Sarafin, Artemis mission manager, NASA Headquarters
  • Jeremy Parsons, deputy manager, Exploration Ground Systems Program, NASA’s Kennedy Space Center
  • John Blevins, chief engineer, Space Launch System Program, NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center

Wednesday, Sept. 21: 7:15 am ET - Artemis 1 fueling test begins

On Wednesday, Sept. 21, NASA will conduct a critical "tanking" test of the Artemis 1 Space Launch System rocket, with live coverage beginning at 7:15 a.m. EDT (1115 GMT)

The test will last several hours, with NASA broadcasting it on both its NASA TV Public and NASA TV Media YouTube and cable channels during the event. 

If you want to follow the fueling process completely, you'll want to use NASA's Media Channel. That's because Sept. 21 is also the launch day for a Russian Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft, which will carry a new three-person crew (including NASA astronaut Frank Rubio) to the International Space Station.

Bonus webcast: 9 am ET - Soyuz MS-22 ISS crew launch and docking

While NASA fuels the Artemis 1 moon rocket, the agency's Russian partner Roscosmos will launch a new crew to the International Space Station

A Russian Soyuz rocket will launch the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft at 9:54 a.m. EDT (1354 GMT) on Sept. 21 from a pad at Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The Soyuz will carry NASA astronaut Frank Rubio and Russian cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin to the space station. 

The three space travelers will fly a swift two-orbit trip to the space station that should last about three hours. Docking is scheduled at 1:11 p.m. EDT (1711 GMT). NASA's docking webcast will begin at 12:15 p.m. EDT (1615 GMT)

At 3:30 p.m. EDT (1930 GMT), NASA will broadcast live coverage of the welcome ceremony aboard the space station for the new crew.

Monday, Sept. 27: Artemis 1 launch countdown resumes

NASA will likely resume its Artemis 1 launch countdown sometime Monday afternoon for a planned Tuesday launch. Exactly when is yet to be announced. 

Sept. 27: TBD - Artemis 1 SLS fueling coverage begins

Tuesday, Sept. 27, is the third launch attempt for NASA's Artemis 1 moon mission and it's going to be a LONG day. 

NASA has not yet listed when it's webcast activities will begin, but fueling coverage has typically begun about 9 hours before liftoff. That would put tanking coverage at around the 2:30 a.m. EDT (0630 GMT) timeframe if the pattern holds, s begin at 5:45 a.m. EDT (0945 GMT), with a live webcast on the fueling of the Space Launch System. The core stage of the SLS rocket can hold about 730,000 gallons of super-cold liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen, so loading that propellant will take up to 3 or 4 hours. 

There is a critical moment to watch for in the fueling: the early chill down of the four main engines on the SLS rocket, something that is critical for the launch to proceed.

Tuesday, Sept. 27: ~9 am ET - Full Artemis 1 launch coverage

NASA's full launch coverage webcast for Artemis 1 will begin again on Sept. 27. This typically begins just over  2 hours before launch, which would put it at around 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT) if the pattern holds. This part of the agency's webcast will be in English. 

"Launch coverage will continue through translunar injection and spacecraft separation, setting Orion on its path to the moon," NASA wrote in a description.

Tuesday, Sept. 27: ~10 am ET - Artemis 1 Spanish broadcast

An hour after NASA's English-language broadcast begins, the agency will begin its Spanish-language webcast to chronicle the Artemis 1 mission. 

The webcast will run through launch and the first 15 minutes of the mission after liftoff. Following the launch, you can get Spanish-language updates on Artemis 1 through the NASA en Español social media channels.

Tuesday, Sept. 27: 11:37 a.m. EDT - Artemis 1 Liftoff

This is the moment of truth for NASA's Artemis 1 mission: the first launch window for the Space Launch System rocket. 

NASA actually has a two-hour window in which to try to launch the SLS booster, so liftoff could occur anytime between 11:37 a.m. to 1:37 p.m. EDT (1537-1737 GMT), weather and technical systems permitting.

Tuesday, Sept. 27: 1 hour after liftoff - Artemis 1 post-launch briefing

After launch, NASA will hold a post-launch press conference scheduled for no earlier than 1 hour after the launch broadcast ends. NASA will hold a briefing around12:30-1 p.m. EDT (1630-1700 GMT) start time for this briefing, but that could change as the day progresses.

Below are the NASA officials scheduled to speak in the briefing.

  • Bill Nelson, NASA administrator 
  • Mike Sarafin, Artemis mission manager, NASA Headquarters
  • Mike Bolger, Exploration Ground Systems Program manager, Kennedy
  • Howard Hu, Orion Program manager, NASA’s Johnson Space Center
  • John Honeycutt, Space Launch System Program manager, Marshall
  • Emily Nelson, chief flight director, Johnson

Sept. 27: 1:03 p.m. ET- Orion trajectory burn

If all goes well with the launch, NASA will host a webcast to highlight the first trajectory maneuver to send the Artemis 1 Orion beyond Earth orbit and off to the moon. 

The time of this coverage may change depending on the launch time of the Artemis 1 mission. 

Sept. 27: TBD - Orion views of the Earth

The last major Artemis 1 launch day event is when the Orion spacecraft is expected to beam its first views of the Earth from space.

Like the outbound trajectory maneuver, the timing of this broadcast is subject to change depending on the exact launch time and the health of the Orion spacecraft.

Previous Artemis 1 briefings

Monday, Aug. 22: Artemis 1 flight readiness review

One week from launch, on Monday, Aug. 22, NASA Artemis 1 mission managers will meet in a day-long Flight Readiness Review to decide of the Artemis 1 SLS rocket is ready for launch.

At 7 p.m. EDT (2300 GMT), NASA will hold a press conference to report on the results of that meeting and if the Artemis 1 moon rocket is still on track for its Aug. 29 liftoff. 

Here's who will appear in that briefing.

  • Janet Petro, director, Kennedy Space Center
  • Jim Free, associate administrator for Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters
  • Mike Sarafin, Artemis mission manager, NASA Headquarters
  • Charlie Blackwell-Thompson, Artemis launch director, Exploration Ground Systems Program, Kennedy
  • Howard Hu, Orion Program manager, NASA’s Johnson Space Center
  • John Honeycutt, Space Launch System Program manager, NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center

Friday, Aug. 26: NASA briefing on space industry exploration

On Friday, Aug. 26, NASA will hold a press conference at 10 a.m. EDT (1400 GMT) to highlight the role of commercial space industry on the Artemis 1 mission. 

The briefing will feature experts from NASA, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Boeing (which built the Space Launch System), Jacobs aerospace, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Airbus. 

  • Jim Free, associate administrator, Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters
  • Jeff Zotti, RS-25 program director, Aerojet Rocketdyne
  • Jennifer Boland-Masterson, director of operations, Michoud Assembly Facility, Boeing
  • Randy Lycans, vice president/general manager of NASA Enterprise Solutions, Jacobs
  • Kelly DeFazio, director of Orion production, Lockheed Martin
  • Doug Hurley, senior director of business development, Northrop Grumman
  • Ralf Zimmermann, head of Moon programs and Orion European Service Module, Airbus

Saturday, Aug. 27: NASA Artemis 1 countdown begins

The Artemis 1 launch countdown will begin at 10:23 a.m. EDT (1423 GMT) on Saturday, Aug. 27. Flight controllers will be called to their stations on this day and begin the two-day countdown to the final launch target. 

Saturday, Aug. 27: NASA Artemis 1 prelaunch briefing

On Saturday, Aug. 27, NASA will hold a two briefings to discuss the Artemis 1 mission. The first will be at 11 a.m. EDT (1500 GMT), when mission managers will meet to review the launch plan for Artemis 1 as well as its mission goals. 

The briefing will include an overview of the mission, a look at the weather forecast and NASA's backup plans in case an Aug. 29 launch date is delayed. Backup days for the mission are currently targeted for Sept. 2 and Sept. 5.

Related: NASA's Artemis 1 moon mission explained in photos 

  • Mike Sarafin, Artemis mission manager, NASA Headquarters
  • Charlie Blackwell-Thompson, Artemis launch director, Exploration Ground Systems Program, Kennedy
  • Judd Freiling, ascent and entry flight director, Johnson
  • Rick LaBrode, lead flight director, Johnson
  • Melissa Jones, recovery director, Exploration Ground Systems Program, Kennedy 
  • Melody Lovin, weather officer, Space Launch Delta 45 
  • Jacob Bleacher, chief exploration scientist, Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters

Saturday, Aug. 27: NASA Artemis Moon to Mars briefing

After the prelaunch briefing, NASA will hold a press conference on Saturday, Aug. 27 at 2:30 p.m. EDT (1830 GMT), led by NASA Administrator Bill Nelson to discuss the agency's plans to explore the moon, Mars and beyond.. 

NASA has billed the talk as a "briefing on the agency’s Moon to Mars exploration plans" and it will feature presentations by Nelson and representatives from across the agency's exploration, space technology and spaceflight branches to outline plans to reach Mars from the moon under the Artemis program.

  • Bill Nelson, NASA administrator 
  • Bhavya Lal, NASA associate administrator for technology, policy, and strategy
  • Jim Free, NASA associate administrator, Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate 
  • Kathy Lueders, NASA associate administrator, Space Operations Mission Directorate 
  • Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA associate administrator, Science Mission Directorate 
  • Prasun Desai, NASA deputy associate administrator, Space Technology Mission Directorate 
  • Randy Bresnik, NASA astronaut

Sunday, Aug. 28: NASA Artemis 1 launch countdown update

On Sunday, Aug. 28, NASA will hold a short briefing at 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT) to give an update on the launch progress for Artemis 1.

The briefing will review the mission's countdown status with Jeff Spaulding, NASA's Artemis 1 senior test director, as well as Melody Lovin, weather officer with Space Launch Delta 45 at the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station near KSC.

  • Jeff Spaulding, Artemis I senior NASA test director
  • Melody Lovin, weather officer, Space Launch Delta 45

Monday, Aug. 29: 12 a.m. EDT - Artemis 1 Launch Day - Fueling coverage

Monday, Aug. 29, was the first launch attempt for NASA's Artemis 1 moon mission and it's going to be a LONG day. 

NASA's webcast activities began at 12 a.m. EDT (0400 GMT), with a live webcast on the fueling  operations, which NASA calls tanking, of the Space Launch System. The core stage of the SLS rocket can hold about 730,000 gallons of super-cold liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen, so loading that propellant will take up to four hours. 

NASA ultimately could not chill down one of the SLS rocket's main engines to its target temperature, delaying launch.

Monday, Aug. 29: 1 p.m. ET - Artemis 1 post-scrub news conference

After launch, NASA held a post-launch press conference scheduled for no earlier than 1 hour after the launch broadcast ends. NASA held it a 1 p.m. EDT (1700 GMT) start time for this briefing, but that could change as the day progresses.

Below are the NASA officials scheduled to speak in the briefing.

  • Bill Nelson, NASA Administrator
  • Mike Sarafin, Artemis 1 mission manager
  • Jeff Free, NASA associate adminstrator for exploration systems development.

Tuesday, Aug. 30: 6 p.m. ET - Artemis 1 teleconference

NASA held a post-scrub press briefing (opens in new tab) on Tuesday (Aug. 30) at 6:00 p.m. ET (2200 GMT). The teleconference discussed the next steps for the flight test of the agency's Space Launch System mega moon rocket and uncrewed Orion spacecraft following the scrubbed launch attempt on Monday (Aug. 29).

Participants included: Mike Sarafin, Artemis mission manager; Charlie Blackwell-Thompson, Artemis launch director; and John Honeycutt, manager of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) Program.

Friday, Sept. 3 is the next window for launch attempt for NASA's Artemis 1 moon mission. The agency has not yet stated whether an attempt will be made in this window after encountering an issue with one of the rocket's four RS-25 engines on its core stage.

Here's NASA chief Bill Nelson's remarks on the scrub.

Thursday, Sept. 1: 6 pm ET - Artemis 1 prelaunch briefing

On Thursday, Sept. 1, NASA will hold a press conference at 6 p.m. EDT (2200 GMT) to once again discuss the launch readiness of the Artemis 1 mission. 

The press conference will follow a day-long mission management team meeting in which NASA officials decide if the Artemis 1 Space Launch System and its Orion spacecraft are ready for a 2nd launch attempt. 

Speaking in this prelaunch briefing will be:

Friday, Sept. 2: 9 a.m. ET - Artemis 1 prelaunch briefing

On Friday, Sept. 2, at 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT), NASA will hold one final press conference on the status of Artemis 1 going into its second launch attempt. 

During the briefing, NASA will discuss any new issues that have cropped up as Artemis prepares to launch, as well as any weather concerns.

Speaking in the briefing are: 

  • Jeff Spaulding, Artemis senior NASA test director, NASA Kennedy
  • Melody Lovin, weather officer, Space Launch Delta 45

Saturday, Sept. 3: 4:37 a.m. ET - Artemis 1 launch countdown resumes

NASA will resume its Artemis 1 launch countdown on Saturday, Sept. 3, at 4:37 a.m. EDT (0837 GMT) at the beginning of a 2.5-hour planned hold.  

The clock will begin ticking down toward launch at the end of the 2.5-hour hold. 

Sept. 3: 5:45 a.m ET - Artemis 1 SLS fueling coverage begins

Saturday, Sept.3, is the second launch attempt for NASA's Artemis 1 moon mission and it's going to be a LONG day. 

NASA's webcast activities begin at 5:45 a.m. EDT (0945 GMT), with a live webcast on the fueling  operations, which NASA calls tanking, of the Space Launch System. The core stage of the SLS rocket can hold about 730,000 gallons of super-cold liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen, so loading that propellant will take up to 3 or 4 hours. 

There is a critical moment to watch for in the fueling: the early chill down of the four main engines on the SLS rocket. One of those engines, Engine No. 3, did not reach anywhere near its target temperature during the first launch attempt, prompting the scrub.

Saturday, Sept. 3 - Artemis 1 scrub update

NASA scrubbed the Sept. 3 launch attempt of Artemis 1 at 11:17 a.m. EDT (1517 GMT) due to a hydrogen leak on the Space Launch System core stage. 

Shortly after the scrub, NASA held a press conference on the agency's next steps. You can see it above. 

Speaking in the briefing were:

  • NASA Administrator Bill Nelson 
  • Jim Free, associate administrator for Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters 
  • Mike Sarafin, Artemis mission manager, NASA Headquarters

Sept. 8: Artemis 1 launch status update

On Thursday, Sept. 8, NASA held a teleconference to discuss plans for a new launch attempt for the Artemis 1 mission. 

The briefing, which you can listen to above, detailed the agency's plan to repair a liquid hydrogen leak on the Artemis 1 Space Launch System rocket, seek a waiver from the U.S. Space Force for a flight termination systems battery check and conduct a critical fueling test to ensure the leak fixes worked.

Speaking in the briefing were the following mission officials:

  • Jim Free, associate administrator, Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters 
  • Mike Bolger, Exploration Ground Systems program manager, Kennedy 
  • John Blevins, SLS chief engineer, NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center

For a complete rundown of all the talks and activities surrounding Artemis 1's thrilling flight, check out NASA's detailed coverage schedule (opens in new tab).

Whether staking out a sweet in-person spot to watch Artemis 1 or taking it all in via NASA's livestream options, it’s destined to be the pyrotechnics show of the summer!

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Jeff Spry
Contributing Writer

Jeff Spry is an award-winning screenwriter and veteran freelance journalist covering TV, movies, video games, books, and comics. His work has appeared at SYFY Wire, Inverse, Collider, Bleeding Cool and elsewhere. Jeff lives in beautiful Bend, Oregon amid the ponderosa pines, classic muscle cars, a crypt of collector horror comics, and two loyal English Setters.