Friday, August 30th 2019, 5:49 pm - The space agency moved the massive tower indoors to protect it from Hurricane Dorian, expected to hit the area early next week.
NASA's Kennedy Space Center is moving its massive Mobile Launcher tower indoors to protect it from Hurricane Dorian, which is expected to hit the area early next week.
"We have a hurricane, which is forecast to come to Florida," NASA's Derrol Nail said in a video update from the spaceport, "and so this particular launch tower, which is 400 feet [121 metres] tall, is obviously at risk of being damaged by a hurricane if it makes a hit in this area."
The Mobile Launcher is a tower that supports NASA's Space Launch System. It was sitting on an outdoor launchpad that's undergoing testing to send astronauts to the moon in 2024.
The tower will be kept inside the space center's 52-story Vehicle Assembly Building until the storm passes.
Dorian reached Category 3 strength Friday afternoon, with winds of 185 kilometres per hour.
The U.S. National Hurricane Centre is calling Hurricane Dorian an 'extremely dangerous' storm as it marches toward the Bahamas, with an eye on Florida beyond early next week.
"On this track, the core of Dorian should move over the Atlantic well north of the southeastern and central Bahamas tonight and tomorrow, be near or over the northwestern Bahamas on Sunday, and be near the Florida east coast late Monday," the U.S. National Hurricane said in a Friday evening update.