SonicSpike shares a report from Futurism: It appears that NASA’s Artemis 1 rocket launch pad caught way more damage than expected when it finally took off from the Kennedy Space Center last week. As Reuters space reporter Joey Roulette tweeteda source within the agency said that damage to the launchpad “exceeded mission management’s expectations,” and per his description, it sounds fairly severe.
“Elevator blast doors were blown right off, various pipes were broken, some large sheets of metal left laying around,” the Reuters reporter noted in response to SpaceNews’ Jeff Foust, who on Friday summarized a NASA statement conceding that the launchpad’s elevators weren’t working because a “pressure wave” blew off the blast doors. Shortly after the launch, NASA acknowledged that debris was seen falling off the rocket, although officials maintain that it caused “no additional risk” to the mission. In spite of those sanguine claims, however, reporters revealed that NASA seemed very intent on them not photographing the Artemis launch tower — and now, with these preliminary reports about how messed up it seems to have gotten, we may know why.